The Easterner

No level of money, fame or success can ever make some people happy

It is often hard to understand why somebody would choose to commit suicide.

By The Easterner, Editorial Board

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It is often hard to understand why somebody would choose to commit suicide. It is even harder to understand when, on the outside, they look like they have everything going for them. You see people like Robin Williams, or more recently Chris Cornell, who to us it looks like they have everything anyone could ever want.

But we are not them, and we don’t understand what they are going through. In some cases you can never fully understand what someone is struggling with, even if they are a close loved one. After a tragic loss like suicide, those close to the person who died are interviewed and for the most part they say the same thing: “I could never have imagined them doing this. They were the nicest and most caring person.”

No level of money, fame or success can ever make some people happy. It is not because they are greedy or ungrateful people, it is that material things don’t fill the holes in their lives. It is hard for some people to imagine, but those who have achieved high levels of success and fame like Jim Carrey, have spoken about it. “I think everybody should get rich and famous and do everything they ever dreamed of so they can see that it’s not the answer.”

Ryan Holiday wrote a piece for “Thought Catalog” called “You’ll Never Really Feel Like You’ve ‘Made It’ (And Why That’s A Good Thing).” In it he uses an example of how when you are in fourth grade and look at sixth graders you think how cool they are, and in two years you will be one of those cool kids. But, as he says, “You never end up feeling like a sixth grader. You never actually ‘arrive’”.  

I think this speaks to the misconceptions people have about what they think they will feel like when something happens. Things like graduating from college, getting the job you desire or getting a promotion you have always dreamed of. They fill the void for sometime, but a few months of weeks later, you are no longer satisfied with the promotion and you want more.

After someone takes their life there is always a list of the warning signs experts tell you to look for to try to stop future tragedies.  Unfortunately, most people who commit suicide never show the signs experts tell you to look for. According to Dr. Michael Miller, assistant professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School Many people who commit suicide do so without letting on they are thinking about it or planning it.” The warning signs, while helpful with certain individuals, are not a one size fits all approach to prevention.

Help is out there for those who need it, that part is clear. But no amount of free help will do any good if people don’t seek it. Getting help or even just talking to somebody about problems or issues you are facing can sometimes mean the difference between life and death.

At EWU, counseling is free to all students through the CAPS services. It is something that everybody could benefit from, because everybody has issues—some worse than others. Students are also encouraged to call the Student Health Clinic at (509) 235-6151, or Spokane Mental Health at (509) 838-4651. Websites such as BetterHelp also provide e-counseling to those who need help with depression, stress, anxiety, grief and more. You’ll be matched to a licensed, professional therapist based off of factors such as gender, age, relationship status, whether or not you’ve ever had counseling or therapy before, and more.

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1 Comment

One Response to “No level of money, fame or success can ever make some people happy”

  1. Stacey Chay on January 28th, 2018 1:50 pm

    Please be aware that the term “committed” suicide is very outdated and reinforces stigma. In our culture, the term committed is often associated with crimes, inpatient psychiatric hospitalization, and even sin. The CDC and WHO have recommended for several years to simply say “death by suicide or died by suicide.” While not used in this editorial, the terms completed and successful are also outdated and should never be used to describe a suicide attempt or death by suicide. We also should not be saying, “failed attempt.”

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No level of money, fame or success can ever make some people happy