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Is suicide wrong? It's obvious that suicide should not be the first solution tried in order to fix a problem, but who's to say that someone shouldn't take their own life if they so wish? Under what circumstance is it alright, if ever?

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"I agree with the idea that one's life is one's life, and if he/she chooses to end it the choice should be available." - Marci B

So if a 5-year-old wants to off themselves, this is OK? 10-year-old? 15-year-old? The reason you would probably balk at those hypotheticals is that we understand children are (in general!) less equipped to make such complex and impactful decisions than their older guardians. The flaw in your suggestion to allow suicide is that this 'right' should be denied to most people contemplating suicide on the same basis that you would deny children this 'right' - diminished capacity. Suicidal thinking is a strong indicator of some sort of mental illness (has to be fairly set-in, too, in order to overcome the natural survival instinct), and we as a society understand that people wih mental illnesses sometimes need to be protected from themselves, and/or have the society protected from them.

Personally, the only 'suicide' I can contemplate accepting (as a rule rather than exception) probably doesn't really qualify as suicide; being able to ask for death in the case of ever becoming a vegetable, where complete or major brain death has occurred. In that situation I would definitely want my organs, corneas, whatever is useful harvested and my plug to be pulled - unfortunately it's not feasible to allow such action for lesser ailments, including terminally ill people in pain with no hope of recovery, since there is just too much potential for abuse of any system put into place. You know the saying, "better 100 guilty men at liberty than one innocent man in prison", well.. same goes for assisted suicides; better 100 people have to suffer a bit longer than 1 person who did not want to die get offed by their family/doctor/etc..

I realize I'm rambling a bit, stopping now... :P

As others have said in different ways, most people who commit (or attempt to commit) suicide have problems in the way they perceive reality, are not 'thinking straight', and can benefit more from treatment or other help, than from ending their lives.
I don't know the exact statistics, but from what I'm aware of, it seems at least the upper 90% of suicides are due to a mental illness; unwarranted depression etc. A smaller percentage due to excess real emotional pain, which we all know in those cases to make tomorrow better. But at the time, for the individual, it doesn't seem possible.

All of these cases, suicide is simply not the answer, or any answer for that matter.

However, there is a very tiny percentage of suicides that I cannot simply sweep aside as "wrong"... these would be by those who have no chance of escaping severe pain or physical vegetation for the rest of their life. These people don't want to live the rest of their life in absolute torment. It is in these rare cases that I cannot say suicide isn't an answer.

Much the same way we put an animal out of it's misery rather than watch it suffer for hours, days or weeks on end. Sometimes ending ones life is the only humane thing left to do.

Of course, as I said, these cases are incredibly rare.

Most cases of suicide are of course completely avoidable.
well suicides must be legalized in my opinion. For some due to some reasons death is the only way to solve all their problems. Can any govt. stop me if i want to commit suicide? nobody tells anyone that he is going to commit suicide tonight! well it is better to die rather then living a life full of suffering. If there are solutions to your problems then you can live but what about those who don't have any solutions to their problems?
Its my life, why shouldn't I be allowed to do with it as I will? I say suicided is acceptable as long as it is an informed decision. That is baring any mental illness that alters my mind and is treatable.
I have PTSD and it has caused me problems but with help I've been able to manage. At times killing myself seemed like a reasonable recourse. However I knew that I wasn't in my right state of mind and at least didn't make that hasty decision. If there was no treatment for it, I'm sure I wouldn't be here today.
Some torments and pain are short term, you can make it through them by yourself or with help. If you are plagued with an incurable disease and your future is to suffer it should be your right to end the pain permanently.
When I was 13, my friend hanged himself.

When it is time for me to check out, suicide is my preferred route. Death is a meaningful event to be left in the hands of other people and the elements.

Choosing the day is the best part.
I'm shooting for death by motorcycle on the last day I am physically capable of riding!

I don't think suicide is wrong, but it is often irrational. I am attracted to the Viking idea of a good death. Live well and die well ;-)
I have an ex-wife that "attempted" suicide seven times in the last ten years of the marriage. She always did it in such a way(overdoses) that she would most probably be found by myself or my children before she croaked all the way. I currently have a housemate that got hurt on the job and has been severly screwed over by workman's comp, so he's broke, depressed, in a lot physical pain, and with no effective pain meds started drinking to deal with the pain. Now he's drinking heavily, and I braced him about it after he had been on a seven day drunken binge. One day later, with a .4 alcohol level, he sliced his wrist(crosswise, not along the veins) at a time of night when he knew I would probably be home in time to save him.

My point is that most suicide "attempts" are cries for help, but also very selfish acts. You won't put up with my insane behavior so I'll show you. Most unsuccessul suicides are acted out under the influence of heavy drug or alchohol use. This current roomate was recently sober and leading a hard but effective life. He's deteriorated into a manic depressive and his aquaintences talk only half kiddingly about starting a dead pool. He's in denial and doesn't admit to a problem.

Sorry to dump like this, perhaps I have my own personality defect that makes me collect sick cats and mad dogs, but this crap is getting old. We need a comprehensive national health system that makes mental health treatment available to everyone. I think I've about completed the home study for advanced psychology, but I'm too close to the situation. I just want to tell him to man the f up and hold out for better times, but he needs someone without emotional attachment to convince him that his own behaviour is now a bigger problem than his string of bad luck, and probably meds to stop the cycles or spirals that he is going through.

I don't suffer from depression, but everyone else's is sure getting to be a load.
No. Making value judgements about actions of other people is futile unless one has access to their brain functions.

I'll drink to that.
Right, but "too burdensome" is of course pretty subjective, and that I think that conclusion should be reached after actually trying or researching other alternatives. Otherwise it seems like a waste.

That being said I plan on punching my own ticket if I become mentally incapable but physically fit (eg Alzheimer's) or physically incapable but mentally fit (paralyzed) or probably just really old and broke.
I don't believe it is "wrong," but I believe that people that desperate (assuming they aren't dying anyway as with illnesses or old age) of a situation are unable to clearly consider the situation. Therefore, I believe they need help to make the best of their life instead of opting out.

Most importantly is the family they leave behind. Suicide is so selfish. If a relatively well person wishes to end their live regardless of their family, and therapy doesn't help, then so be it. I personally think it's cowardice, not progressive thought.
I would never commit suicide unless I was going to die. Like, 100%, no chance of surviving, terminal, 1-week to live, extremely painful cancer. However, I can understand wanting death in a terrible situation.
I don't see any reason why it would not be acceptable. It is very hard to establish a base on which to assess the ethics of this action. If we assume, as I tend to believe, that the only truly unethical action is harming or killing another human (it gets a little more tricky when talking about animals as well) then as long as you are not harming anyone else in the process of suicide it is completely ethical. However, it could conceivably be claimed that since one would cause grief among family and friends, this could be seen as harming them and thus unethical.


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