The Domino Effect

Suicide Takes One, but Inevitably Affects All

Stanley Francispillai  (Contributor)


39.42 seconds. Every 39.42 seconds, something leaves us forever.

Every 39.42 seconds, someone in the world closes their eyes, making the conscious decision to never open them again.

In 39.42 seconds, someone will commit suicide.

It seems as though around every corner, something hinders us from reaching our desires and achieving our dreams. For teenagers, we’ve got all the drama and complications that come hand-in-hand with our 21st-century age-group…

I understand that.

From grades to goals, family to friends, relationships, and more, everything combines into the complicated whole that is our present lives. For most, that sums up our everyday life. However, for many of the people you saw or will see today, there are deeper, darker thoughts that plague their minds.

The numbers are real.
Even scarier is that they’re under-estimated. According to the World Health Organization, over 800,000 people commit suicide every year, excluding those who attempt it.

Look around, Abbott. Everywhere your eyes travel, there is someone with a story, for we all have our own. You may or may not know them, but they’re there. They smile, yet the effort to maintain it is unimaginable. They do it for fear of being found out of the life they lead.

Because for every person that wakes up to a “Good morning” greeting and warm breakfast, there is someone who awakens to raised voices and slamming doors. For every kid that enjoys the luxury of pocket-change for use at the cafeteria, there is another striving to obtain nourishment, or debating whether or not to eat. For every student that goes to school, comes home and does homework, there is the other that must balance his education with multiple jobs to get by…

For every person that goes to sleep reminiscing on memories of the day and looking forward to the next, there is another who lays awake, crying, afflicted by the struggles they faced, pleading to someone, anyone, for tomorrow to never come.

Divide the 525,600 minutes in a year by the 800,000 in the same way that suicide divides the living from the lost… Both results are equally heart-breaking.

Think of the eight-hundred thousand families, friends, worlds, lives; the damage is unconceivable. Moreover, whilst reading this, approximately four more forty-second intervals have passed…

Everything has consequence. It’s as though every fabric of our existence is connected by invisible threads; each word you make and step you take lead to something more. Like dominos, one touches the next; nothing is left unaffected.

No burden is easy to hold, but we mustn’t bear them alone. Reaching out to one another and allowing them into our lives demonstrates that we are human, but human together. Someone out there has it worse. For all you know, they’re sitting beside you.

There is more to life than we presently see; however, we must make the decision to wait and witness it, for it will come.

Keep your head up, Abbott.

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