October 15, 2004 - 1:01 pm

Never in a million years would I think that someone has killed themselves or attempted to kill themselves for attention.

However, I've recently acquired the knowledge that there are people in this world who are willing to shrug off a suicidal friend/acquaintance by telling themselves that said friend is just looking to get attention by attempting to kill themselves.

How does this work exactly?

Let's say the person succeeds and dies. Yes, I'd have to say that people might come to the funeral, thereby giving some attention to the person. But then what?

That person is DEAD. In case one of these "friends" hadn't noticed, they're not around to receive the attention they were (according to "friends") craving.

Now let's say the person survives. That person is still alive and this is what they deal with afterwards.

From then on, that person will be treated differently by most of their friends. People will walk on eggshells with them afraid something they might say would send them off the deep end. People will judge them as someone who "isn't all there" or "has issues". People will talk in hushed voices about how this person tried to kill themself. This person will henceforward be known as unstable, manic, etc.

This is reality and this is what I'm dealing with. I am surrounded by judgements. I try to tell myself that people don't know how to react to suicide and that is why they tend to treat someone who has tried it negatively.

Please keep in mind that I am by NO MEANS complaining. I attempted to kill myself, it's true. Now I have to deal with the consequences. I can be accountable for that.

Yet it is so beyond me as to why anyone would crave the type of attention that I have gotten since I tried killing myself.

It's not fun. It does not make me feel better or validated or cared for or loved. It makes me feel like a freak.

Please also understand that I have never in my life had a problem coming up with creative ways to get attention. I have never once complained that I'm not getting enough attention from someone or something.

I get all the attention I need. I've been known to be a bit of a 'drama queen'.

But to think that my attempt to take my own life, to rid myself of pain, to be in a place where no one matters any more and the only thing I can focus on is how I want this hurt to stop -to think that THAT is an attempt at gettign attention is utterly ridiculous.

I'll get attention by flashing my boobs, by cracking politically incorrect jokes.

But I do not ask for attention by getting drunk and sitting over my bathtub, slicing and slicing at my left wrist because I want all of this to stop.

I do not believe that anyone would want this type of attention.

I cannot even fathom that any person would do such a thing for attention. I can't believe that a person would hurt themselves, would leave a scar, would put up with the judgements and being treated differently, just to get attention.

The entry is a lesson. Some of you may be thinking, "Well if she doesn't want attention, why is she writing about this in a public journal?"

I am writing about it because this is the part I want to receive all your attention. Above, those are just details. This is the important part:

If a friend is hurting themselves, find out what is wrong. It may be scary to approach someone who is trying to take their lives. You may not know how to act, but that friend needs you. You could save a life.

Don't let your own fear of death consume you to the point where you start creating ludicrous reasons to explain this persons actions just to let yourself off the hook.

There may not be anything you can do. Know that as well. This person may be so far gone they push you away. That will happen at times.

Don't take it personally. They are not themselves, they are not in control. Suicide is all consuming. Your friend is hurting and can't see beyond that, they're not going to be rational. This does not need to be pointed out to them until later, however.

Friends are important, they add value to life. In fact, they are life.

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