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Does Thinking Of Suicide Lead To Suicide?

Question:

If you think of suicide does that mean you will flip and do it? Because of health reasons (injury) and a dishonest atorney I am left with a wife 3 kids house (losing it) dog .We have lost everything. Had the perfect life. Church 3 times a week, made around 100k year. Really enjoyed life. After I got hurt everythig went south.I attend what I can of church well really a fellowship group sometimes. Most Sundays I hurt and I am heavely medicated (have been since 02). I have abouve average problem solving ability and very high IQ level. Was diagnosed as autistic when I was young but it was a misdiagnosis. So lets say I have a little bit of common sense and a lot of education within the system. I went far. At points I have thought of doing the deed as my young family could move on and have a normal life. We are mid 30s and She and the children don’t need to deal with this there whole lives. I know that if I do I will go to hell so I have not nor would I in sane mind. Anytime I have gotten the thought I throw it right out of my head. The question is just because you think about it sometimes but not often does that mean you will flip out and do it?

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Answer:

This is a beautiful world, but there certainly is no end of trouble to be had in it. It looks like you’ve had your share too. I’m sorry to hear about your injury, and the disability and financial difficulties you’ve had since that event. What seems to be the case currently is that you’ve developed a chronic pain condition, and possibly more than that. Depression can easily occur in the aftermath of disabling events, and can easily contribute to chronic pain conditions. Also, some of the medications that are used to treat pain can be addictive, leading to further troubles.

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p> It is easy to think suicidal thoughts when you are in chronic pain and/or depressed. Suicidal thoughts are, in fact, a symptom of depression. To answer your question directly, it is not the case that you will necessarily “flip out” and kill yourself just because you have them. Many depressed people experience suicidal thoughts and the vast majority of them do not go on to kill themselves. Some do, of course, but the vast majority of people do not. Fleeting thoughts about killing yourself are of least concern within the spectrum of sucidal thoughts. Get more worried when you start making detailed plans as to how you will do yourself in.

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p> Don’t ignore those thoughts, even if they don’t mean you will kill yourself tomorrow. They are a sort of cry for help; suggesting that you are in such a state (not only of physical pain, but also I suspect, of shame for not being the provider you once were) that you see no other way to lead a satisfying life other than to exit from life. Clearly, you could benefit from professional help. Please seek out medical assistance specifically for chronic pain and for depression conditions. A psychiatrist might be the best sort of doctor to consult with in this circumstance, as they best understand the complex relationships between physical and emotional pain. Please also seek out psychotherapy or counseling. I know money must be tight, but this is worth doing as we are talking about your very life here. Your pain doctor (whomever is medicating you for your injury) might know of local behavioral health psychologists who specialize in psychological treatment of chronic pain (yes – it exists and it can be very effective). The same sort of psychologist can probably also help you with depression (as I said before, chronic pain and depression can go hand in hand).

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p> One other thought is that you may have a real resource in your church that you should not ignore. There are more reasons to not kill yourself than that you would “go to hell”. If fear of going to hell is all that you think church is about, you are missing out on something important. There are actually positive reasons to go to church too, not just negative ones. After all, a central message of most churches is that despair can be overcome by way of grace, is it not? Seek out some of that grace, if you are a believer; it may ultimately provide the motivation that helps you snap out of this uncomfortable place you’re stuck in.

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