People who commit suicide are very selfish people. They do not inflict their own pain. They inflict pain on their innocent family and friends they leave behind–the ones that are capable of caring and loving unselfishly. Nobody deserves that much pain.

We might have all said this at one time or another, ?I?m going to kill myself,? or ?I might as well be dead, no one will care.? We might have all thought it from one time or another. I admit that I have said it and contemplated it.

I believe my two older brothers had made sacrifices for me–in a morbid sense. They each committed suicide in a way that saved me. Their methods were different, but the meaning was the same. My brothers? weaknesses are my strength.

My oldest brother, Donald, put his revolver in his mouth and blew himself away. I was the unfortunate one to discover his violent way out. After this traumatic incident, I never thought about suicide again. This was his sacrifice for me.

I believe if there were anti-depressants available then, in the early-to mid ?70s, as they are widely used today, he may have been saved. He was awestruck at what Valium did to calm his nerves. If Wellbutrine was prescribed back then, it may have taken him out of depression, like it has done for me.

There are many anti-depressant drugs on the market today that works wonders. This requires a doctor visit and a prescription. Some of these wonder drugs are, Wellbutrine, Celexa, Prozac, Paxil, Zoloft,
Effexor and Serzone. These drugs are the alternative to depression. It surely is worth a try to help prevent a deadly choice of suicide.

My second oldest brother, Mark, killed himself in a fashion that took him years to accomplish–he drank himself to death. His years of alcohol abuse, kept me in check most of the time. After experiencing his health declining with cirrhosis of the liver and eventual death, I finally made the decision to stop drinking because I was going down the same road as he traveled for years. This was his sacrifice for me.

No matter how awful, cruel and fearful the world seems at times, it should never constitute a reason to eliminate yourself. Doing this is cowardly. It doesn?t take courage to kill yourself–only selfish determination. Their survivors were not allowed any alternatives or considerations–only guilt, grief and pain.

Through the years, I have had friends that have killed themselves. Take for instance, my long-time friend, Rick, who overdosed on morphine. His obituary read that it was an accidental overdose. My understanding is if you mess with a killer drug, like morphine, you should expect to die. I wouldn?t call morphine a recreational drug. I wouldn?t call Rick?s death an accidental overdose, rather than– a suicide.

I felt really lost for a long while after Rick died. I can only imagine what his family had to go through. It was my first experience of having someone close to me die like that–so mysteriously. We went to school together, started out drinking together, consuming drugs, sneaking out his parents car and chasing girls.

Because of the nature of his death–suicide, his family and friends were left with questions and guilt, along with grief. He left behind his young wife and baby daughter to suffer because of his actions. He had his whole life ahead of him. He was only twenty-two years old.

About two years later, my oldest brother, Donald, put his revolver in his mouth and blew himself away. His suicide was a violent death. He left our family and his friends with many unanswered questions and tons of guilt and grief. For me, it was very hard to separate my grief from my anger. I was angry at him for doing this and leaving us with so much pain to deal with. He left behind a four year old son. He was divorced from his wife. He was only thirty-six years old.

A friend I use to know through school, named Harky, put a hose to his car exhaust and stuck it through a port in the interior as he dosed off into suicide. His explanation in a note was that he couldn?t go on without the girl who left him. I was pretty distant from him when he died, but there is no doubt what his family went through. He was thirty-something at the time.

Another friend of mine, named Mike, hung himself on a bathroom door with a belt. Everyone was surprised by his actions. His girlfriend was watching television in the other room at the time. There was no note. This was another case of a heavy burden of questions, guilt and grief his family had to deal with. He was a thirty-nine year old fire fighter.

A distant friend I knew, named Steve, overdosed on heroin. It was speculated his death was an accidental overdose, too. He was living his life precariously on the edge. And he, too, left behind a monster of unanswered questions, guilt and grief for his family. He was thirty-something.

A fellow worker of mine, named Jerry, arrived at work early to hang himself beside a boiler in the boiler room of the school where he worked. He was a nice and friendly, easy-going man. Again, why would he want to put his family and friends through this to grieve hard and feel guilt, shame and anger? He was forty-something at the time.

Another friend and fellow-worker, named Brian, decided to take the easy way out and overdose himself with a variety of pills. His body was found near his opened refrigerator door. He had been despondent over a broken up relationship with his girlfriend. He left a rambling and incoherent letter behind. He also left a family in shock with grief, anger and lots of unanswered questions. He was fifty-nine years old.

My other older brother, Mark, drank for about forty years. He developed cirrhosis of the liver and died a very slow, agonizing death. He was almost unrecognizable. He refused help and continued to drink right up until the fifth day before his death. It was horrible. His death was suicide-by-drinking. Of course, that is my terminology and not the coroner?s. But I believe it was suicide on all accounts.

In Mark?s case, I thought I was prepared for his upcoming date with death. I was surprised he had survived as long as he did. I didn?t think I would experience the grief and anger like I did. He had so much potential. He was a good looking, intelligent, talented musician and artist, before this ugly disease took a hook to him and battered his ambitions and choices in life–to hell. He was a brother I became ashamed of because alcohol turned him into a blithering idiot. I knew he was once intelligent and that booze was his ultimate demon. I tried to look past his faults, but it was our family who failed to recognize his serious disease. The denial of his disease turned him into a mentally disturbed man. He was fifty-five years old.

If there is a message I could relay to the young and old contemplating suicide, I would advise them not to be ashamed to seek professional help. I also would recommend them to assess their desperate decision and think their actions out. I would make them aware of how their decision to end their life would deeply affect their family and friends. I would ask them why they would want to inflict such pain and sorrow on their loved ones. Most of all, I would inform them that all things must pass and that what seems unbearable to them now will seem so insignificant if you give it time.

The act of committing suicide is not recommended and approved by God. There will be no guarantee that your spirit and soul will reach heaven. Suicide is final. It is the easy road for some, but it means tears and pain for others.

Earl D. Erickson is a grateful, recovering alcoholic. He loves writing, photography, watching old classic television and films and listening to music. He is an internet author and has writen for Ezine Articles in the past. He is currently writing a book on his life and his struggles with alcoholism, drugs, depression, grief and loss. His book is entitled, Abstinence Makes The Heart Grow Fonder. He hopes to be finished with that project by early next year.

Earl owns and manages two websites. They are, dedicated to his late wife, Bobbie, and to cancer research. His other website is
His love of writing true stories about his experiences bring him happiness and satisfaction. He hopes his stories help his readers identify their struggles they have encountered in similar events in their lives.

Earl is a native and resident of Tacoma, Washington.

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