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*SENSITIVE* AIBU to think some people come across as ignorant nobs about suicide? *TRIGGERS*

(291 Posts)
SelectAUserName Wed 19-Feb-14 07:58:12

FB (sorry!) friend posted a status update complaining about being late home last night because someone threw themselves under their train. She and one of her FB friends (who I don't know) swapped several comments which included the phrases "selfish", "inconsiderate", "I would quite like to get home and enjoy my life thank you very much" etc.

I posted fairly mildly saying that it must have been frustrating but at least it was a minor inconvenience for her in the scheme of things and it was safe to say the other person, not to mention the driver, had had a far worse day. FB friend then claimed it was "light-hearted" and said they could post what they liked on their own news feed. I said that for some people, there is nothing "light-hearted" about suicide and they couldn't guarantee some of those people wouldn't be using social media; if they chose to post about a sensitive subject they could expect to get pulled up on it.

It wasn't long before I was accused (by FB friend's friend IYSWIM) of being "PC" (oh, how original) and of "attacking" my friend. I reiterated that this was an emotive subject and that maybe they should step back, re-read with an open mind and see that they weren't coming across as very empathic. And then I left it as it was starting to get to me.

AIBU to think that a woman in her 30s should have a bit more compassion about someone in the absolute depths of despair? Or am I being a sanctimonious old trout and "dictating" (that word was used too) what people can and can't say on their FB timeline?

I think if she'd said "sorry, I know I came across as a bit me me me - I was just letting off steam" it wouldn't have bothered me, but to use the word "light-hearted" as self-justification (there was nothing inherently humorous, OTT-for-effect or anything else to suggest light-heartedness about her OP - just a straight rant at have her evening plans disrupted) seemed totally inappropriate.

SelectAUserName Wed 19-Feb-14 07:58:59


HairyGrotter Wed 19-Feb-14 08:01:59

Well, it is her FB page therefore she is entitled to write anything she pleases, and the onus of offence is on those who take it. Suicide is selfish and inconsiderate, that's the basic crux of it.

She was brash in writing about it, not really on but she has every right to vent her frustration as much as the victim had every right to end their life

EddieBlizzard Wed 19-Feb-14 08:02:56

Suicide is selfish but the person who committed the suicide would've been in such a bad place that they probably thought they were doing the world a favour. So I hate it when people say it's selfish etc and minimize just how awful it is for the person and for their loved ones.

It's one of the most tragic things that can happen to a person/their loved ones (I've been there, both as the suicidal person and as the loved one).

I think you were perfectly reasonable. Some will disagree though as it is a very emotive subject.

EddieBlizzard Wed 19-Feb-14 08:04:38

And FB is a social media site, so you should think before you post some things unless you don't mind the backlash.

DarlingGrace Wed 19-Feb-14 08:07:25

Peoples actions always impact on others.

Where as suicides always make me melancholic purely because I cant imagine someone being that low, with no one to turn to, that no one noticed or cared about them ..... I have to confess, when I worked up town, if my train was held up, I would get very angry because I couldn't afford to pay the CM any more money for not collecting on time.

BarbarianMum Wed 19-Feb-14 08:08:50

<<Suicide is selfish>>

I find that really offensive, actually. The 2 people who committed suicide I've known were broken and desperate, not selfish.

So tell me, what's selfish about it (as a whole, as we're going for sweeping statements here)?

Polyethyl Wed 19-Feb-14 08:09:02

In Japan the families of suicide by train are fined for the inconvenience and clear up. It's such a selfish thing to do. The distress to the train driver. The awfulness for whoever has to shovel up the remains and wash away the blood and the delays to everyone else.
Committing suicide is bad enough but doing it in such a selfish way - deserves criticism.

MrsWolowitz Wed 19-Feb-14 08:09:27

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

MrsWolowitz Wed 19-Feb-14 08:10:33

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

HaymitchAbarnathy Wed 19-Feb-14 08:10:36

Absolute failure of empathy on this thread.

Uptheanty Wed 19-Feb-14 08:10:51

This is why im no longer on Facebook.

There is enough shit going on in my life without getting involved in other peoples shit.

Being on FB means you will be faced with ignorant behaviour daily, either ignore it or comment, but don't expect to be thanked for it.


HairyGrotter Wed 19-Feb-14 08:12:01

Well, given that the relatives/friends of the person are affected, as are any witnesses to such horror...I've first hand experience of suicide from BOTH sides, yes the turmoil, pain, confusion, frustration, the wanting to stop it occupies your WHOLE being, you don't stop to think about anyone else being affected, therefore it is selfish in the most basic of language terms

HoratiaDrelincourt Wed 19-Feb-14 08:13:19

If she would have been equally frustrated by somebody having a fatal heart attack and delaying her journey then fair enough.

But most people feel they have the right to criticise suicide in some way, as though it weren't in the vast majority of cases accurately described as "death by mental illness, and as though other deaths are blameless, inevitable, and more worthy of reverence.

I think from your description you responded calmly and appropriately.

HoratiaDrelincourt Wed 19-Feb-14 08:14:25

Suicide has selfish consequences but is unlikely to have resulted from selfish motives.

Birnamwood Wed 19-Feb-14 08:14:28

I have done the same thing op, when a 'friend' posted about being inconvenienced and late home. Her friend then waded in with some vicious comments.

Said 'friend' knew my dad had committed suicide when I was 17. (Not by means of train tho)

I get very angry when people think and complain only of their immediate situation and don't consider the person who was at such a low ebb that they felt the need to kill themselves and also of their family and of course, the poor train driver.

DarlingGrace Wed 19-Feb-14 08:14:40

>waves< I've empathised.

Butterfly flaps its wings etc.

My colleagues husband is a tube driver, been one all his working life. 36 jumpers have landed on the tracks in front of his trains. That's almost one a year. She (my colleague) would have a very different take on whether suicide is selfish or not.

MrsWolowitz Wed 19-Feb-14 08:16:11

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Birnamwood Wed 19-Feb-14 08:16:19

Horatia, thank you, I have been trying for years to find an appropriate phrase to describe the 'selfishness' of suicide. You've nailed it in one sentence.

WanderingAway Wed 19-Feb-14 08:18:19

I agree with Poly.

What about the train driver? Their life could be ruined because of someone jumping in front of their train. Doesnt the train driver deserve a moments thought.

I dont think suicide is selfish but the way in which some people carry it out is selfish.

Yonineedaminute Wed 19-Feb-14 08:21:31

But when you are suicidal you honestly think that the world will be a better place without you and that people will be happy/relieved you are gone, so not really selfish.

I know a few people like the fb friend of the op. I just think they must be so self centred to be more worried about their day being inconvenienced, than to stop and think about the poor bastard that was in the grip of a mental illness so severe that they actually went through with taking their life in the most foolproof way possible.

This particular topic does rather give me the rage. But I know there will be people along in a mo who say 'oh well when you are a commuter you become desensitised to these things' etc etc.

BarbarianMum Wed 19-Feb-14 08:23:12

Hairy when a person is very unhappy friends and family are affected anyway, at least in my experience.

My mum's friend committed suicide when I was a teen. Her husband had died of cancer. A couple of years later her heavily pregnant daughter fainted in the bath and drowned. This woman continued trying to live her life for 6 years, she had counseling, went to support groups, held down a job and went out with friends but she was drowning in grief the whole time. In the end she couldn't take it any more.

My mum found her (we think she arranged it that way). She was very upset but at the same time glad her friend wasn't hurting anymore. Obviously it would have been better if someone could have helped her but wanting her to live that unhappily so that we wouldn't be upset, now that would have been selfish.

MrsMagnificent Wed 19-Feb-14 08:23:12

Suicide is selfish

Suicide isn't a selfish act in most cases. It's an act of pure desperation. Yes it's horrific for those left behind but it's equally horrific what the person has been going through themselves to get to that point.

OP your friend can write what she wants on FB but I don't think you were wrong for what you said. If you put something out there on social media (especially something as ignorant as that) you should expect people will have different opinions.

YWNBU for what you said.

lionheart Wed 19-Feb-14 08:25:03

I don't think terms like selfish and inconsiderate are at all useful when it comes to this issue.

I don't think YABU OP but don't be surprised if worse things are said on this thread than appeared in the FB post which upset you in the first place. sad

Greenandcabbagelooking Wed 19-Feb-14 08:25:25

Yes, it's a little annoying when the train is delayed, for whatever reason. But I can't help thinking how sad and desperate someone's life has become that the only way they can see to make it stop is a painful death by their own hand.

I also feel for the driver. You were the moving object that killed someone, but you could do nothing about it. There's a documentary on YouTube called One Under. It's sad, but worth a watch.

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