If not that we were indoctrinated while growing up that if you take your own life you will go straight to hell, the rate of suicides in Nigeria would've been so alarming. I must tell you, that's only what is holding a lot of folks not to end it all. It has gotten that worst. Most of the suicide cases we hear occasionally are of folks who damned the consequence.
Some people are of the opinion to ban "Sniper." To tell you the truth, Sniper is not what is killing these people, there's more to it than just banning that substance.
Banning that substance is more like treating just the surface symptoms. If we ban it, people would find other means to die.
Instead of clamouring to ban Sniper, we should focus on getting rid of the root cause of people commiting suicide in our society. These we can do. It is a collective work.
So how can we do this?
First, we need to practice 'empathy' in our respective lives. Reach out to people around you and offer help in any way you can to alleviate what they're passing through. I must tell you smiles conceal a lot. Beautiful picture upload hides people suffering deeply. Many are hurting and dying silently. Some are at the brink of taking sniper. Life has become so meaningless and distasteful for them.
So when next you ask someone "How are you", enclose in a bracket: "Be Sincere". I believe this would open them up to pour out what's really going on in their lives. And when they do, please don't abuse it, do what you can. What you can do might be to offer monetary gift, material, a piece of information, a piece of advice, recommendation, a listening ear, shoulder to lean on, an encouragement, wise counsel, little care etc. Anything you can do please do. Your little act of empathy and kind words can uplift their spirits and give them a glimpse of hope to hold on to life and thus, heal the very causes of suicide.
Secondly, I'll call on parents, teachers and the clergy to teach people under their care how to handle rejection, a no, disappointments, failures, heartbreaks, difficulties and set-backs. It is evident that as we go through life we'll be faced with one of any these one time in our life. Teach them to understand that this Life is not all about succeeding or it being always easy.
There would be days we'll fail, your plans won't work out, whether you're religious or not. These are harsh realities of life. If they are equipped with these facts, when it eventually happens, frustrations wouldn't kick in, depression would be so far away from them.
When one is equipped with the right knowledge on how to handle these life's inevitable circumstances, they'll do much better not to let it get to them or make them slide into depression that might lead one to consider suicide. A person with this knowledge will understand whatsoever pain or situations they're going through is only but a phase, it will pass too.
Finally, is there something troubling your mind? Are you feeling depressed? Seek help. Seek for a therapist or a doctor. Speak to a friend. Stop dying silently. Don't let shyness or shame deprive you of help. There are people willing to help but they can't read your mind. When you speak out you get helped. There is this soothing relief that comes from airing out what's troubling you. Suicide don't end pain. Hold on pain ends. Your life can get better again. Things can turn round for good. It will only take a while. Please choose life over suicide. I'm always here anytime you need a friend.
It is our collective job to end this scourge in our midst before it gets worst. I call on you to help out as much as you can. Let's collectively be "the saving grace(s)" of people around us. Show genuine love, care and concerns and you'll forever remain blessed.
Thank you for accepting to do the best you can to make our world free from suicides.
Much love from #MattCares😊
Etumnu Matthew Chidi