Lethal wisdom

Reddit is usually a place for news, views, updates and little sardonic (or sometimes plain silly) humor on the side that will, at its best, make you think for a few minutes and then go on with what you were doing. But every now and then, in the heap of obscure cultural references and inside jokes, you find a gem that truly stands out.

I present to you today, dear reader, one such gem. A Reddit user suffering from depression declared on Reddit (because that’s what you do on Reddit when you’re suffering from depression, you discuss it with fellow Redditors!) that he wished he had a terminal disease so he could die a slow and peaceful death. Little did he know that he would catch the attention of a man who actually happens to be suffering from such a disease and is willing to share his perspective on it. The comment is incredibly honest, hard hitting and perhaps macabre, but it has a lot of wisdom in it; and just like millions of catchy titles on UpWorthy seem to claim, it will change the way you think.

User WantedDead‘s comment on the thread:

It happens that I do have terminal cancer. And I don’t honestly blame you for your feelings on the matter. There is a quality to knowing that you’re going to die and that there’s nothing you can do about it which is in a way liberating. But, the thing is, if you’ve ever sat at someone’s bedside and watched as that evil fucking weed took everything from them and left nothing behind but the sort of agony that no drug can drown out, you would not think it an easy death.

Please don’t think I’m trying to belittle you or invalidate your thoughts. It’s just that there’s a growing movement among the terminally ill (though it can only grow so large before shrinking again due to factors which should be obvious) that waiting for the cancer to take its toll might not be the best idea. And while some of the more civilized folks may be lobbying to legalize assisted suicide, this crazy old redneck is gonna use a 3 inch magnum double-ought buckshot shell and his 12-gauge to leave this world with his boots on once he’s no longer able to live his life in the manner to which he’s become accustomed. I’m thinking somewhere agrarian with a nice view after a good meal and a better glass of bourbon. Hopefully I’ll make it to Spring so the flowers will be in bloom.

And on that day, there will be no one left behind to update this account or browse the front page, read the comment section of really interesting articles, and decide it’s best not to piss into the wind by presenting his genuine opinion. On that day, you’ll still be alive hopefully. And six billion other people on the planet will go about their business as if I had never existed and my death meant nothing at all to them. Because it doesn’t. My life and my death are valuable to me and possibly to a few annoying relatives I really wish I didn’t have. Maybe a few friends will remember my name. That would be nice. But that’s it. No more mornings and a Monster energy drink for a kick in the ass. No more evenings with a decaf and a percocet to help deal with life’s aches and pains.

And that’s the crux of it, I think. Life is supposed to hurt. Because when the pain is gone, you’re dead, and the one person to whom your life and death was most valuable is now gone.

I hope you can find the strength to fight the current that wants to drag you under and pull you to an ignominious fate. Depression, as I’ve found, is just like trying to wade up river. Each step takes all the energy you can muster, bringing about with it a new sense of despair with such little achievement for so strenuous an effort. And every bone in your body is begging you to just give in to the pull of the waters around you.

You could become the sort of masochist who enjoys the suffering. I’ve met a few like that, and probably had my own episodes if I’m honest. Or you could find your way to shore. Good luck.

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15 comments

  1. Wow, thank you for sharing! I am a redditor and horribly depressed. Good read, however extremely depressing. What do you feel like this person was trying to say exactly?

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    1. In essence, he is saying that there is no real purpose of life and that your existence is just a tiny speck in the grand scheme of the Universe. But you exist, you are, and that is what matters. It may be painful, sad, annoying or scary, but it is life and it’s better than nothingness (which is going to happen eventually). You won’t get another chance at this life, so you better make the most of it.

      Thanks for stopping by the blog. Why are you depressed, though? (if you don’t mind sharing)

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    2. About your Depression – Hang in there! Read more such life wisdom. Take it a day at a time. And do not hesitate to reach out to people – for discussions, perspective, advice and reflections. Another pro-tip – seek people, events and activities to keep yourself engaged and to experience new novel things in life. Don’t think of the failures of the past or the uncertainties of the future. Just be in the moment, and learn to be engaged in whatever you do. Good luck!

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  2. Woah! Gave me goosebumps! It’s not reassuring the OP by any means, but it’s exactly what the OP needs to hear. Depression is sick and tough, but a little outside perspective always kicks you in the nuts, and makes you think of your own fortunes and misfortunes in relation to others – and then you probably might indulge less in self pity and more in actually fighting the battle with more rigor. This guy’s got balls. And I wish him well. And I also wish him a dignified and peaceful death of his choosing – and not wither away painfully as he says.

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    1. Exactly. Rosy words don’t help in depression any way, I guess. That’s why I have titled the post Lethal Wisdom :)

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      1. I can attest to that myself – ultimately life is a lonely journey and I pretty much arrived organically at more or less the same conclusion as this above gentleman about the nature of man’s lonely existence. And the nature of life as a battlefield of suffering, with the fleeting moments of pure joy and the transient states of happiness. And I think everyone has to figure it out by themselves, and sooner or later will hopefully come to the same conclusion. And accept life for what it is. And just exist, and live and thrive for as long as possible. Rosy words definitely don’t help in this process. Self realization and catharsis, discovered intuitively and organically by your own life journeys is what helps in the end.

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        1. Yes. It has to come from within. But a nudge (or a shove, in some cases) in the right direction, does help ;-)

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          1. Yes indeed. The nudge or the shove – Either you do it to yourself, or hopefully you are fortunate to have caring people around you to do it for you. Or in the worst case, life’s gonna kick, shove, and punch the shit out of you till you submit to it in the right direction. Either which ways, the nudge and shove is coming! :P

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  3. I don’t like the violence of his imagined suicide.
    But he wrote it so well.. I don’t know how to feel.

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    1. I felt like hugging that man and crying.

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    2. Okay, that crying thing was a bit too much. I did feel like hugging him, though. He’s so brutally honest.

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  4. Well although depression is a chemical thing in ya brain, I feel it’s very situational for me. I had a terrible past, and a traumatic last couple of years, and now I’m in a transitional period in my life. I left my job because it was making me depressed, and I’m desperately trying to find a job, even in fast food, but no one will hire me. I’m also afraid that whatever job I get will continue to make me depressed. I’m regressing back to having a hard time coping with things from the past. I’m finding myself today sort of changing into a different person and wanting different things out of life and having negative views on my future. I’m also really lonely. Thanks for asking Aamil. You can read more of my saddness and misadventures on my blog! It’s funny sometimes.

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    1. I am sorry. I hope you find solace in that fact that this too shall pass.

      Hard times are bad and especially when one is lonely. Feel free to holler here. I’ll be more than happy to lend an ear.

      I did go through your blog. I wonder where you’re from. I’m from India.

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      1. I’m from The United States. Thanks for checking out my blog and for the friendship!

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        1. You’re most welcome :)

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