It’s a rather interesting article. You can view New York Times take on why we have the urge to end it all.

Some interesting notes on jumper-type suiciders:

  • With regards to jumping on a suicide attempt, there’s “high degree of impulsivity associated with that method”.
  • For generations, the people of Britain heated their homes and fueled their stoves with coal gas. This released very high levels of carbon monoxide. “Sticking one’s head in the oven” became so common in Britain that by the late 1950s it accounted for some 2,500 suicides a year, almost half the nation’s total.
  • By the early 1970s, the government phase out coal gas in favor of the much cleaner natural gas. During those same years, Britain’s national suicide rate dropped by nearly a third, and it has remained close to that reduced level ever since.
  • In a moment of deep despair or rage or sadness, they turned to what was easy and quick and deadly – “the execution chamber in everyone’s kitchen,” as one psychologist described it – and that instrument allowed little time for second thoughts. Remove it, and the process slowed down; it allowed time for the dark passion to pass.
  • Many who choose to jump seem to be drawn by a set of environmental cues that, together, offer three crucial ingredients: ease, speed and the certainty of death.
  • “At the risk of stating the obvious,” Seiden said, “people who attempt suicide aren’t thinking clearly. They might have a Plan A, but there’s no Plan B. They get fixated. They don’t say, ‘Well, I can’t jump, so now I’m going to go shoot myself.’ And that fixation extends to whatever method they’ve chosen. They decide they’re going to jump off a particular spot on a particular bridge, or maybe they decide that when they get there, but if they discover the bridge is closed for renovations or the railing is higher than they thought, most of them don’t look around for another place to do it. They just retreat.”
  • A man was grabbed after passers-by noticed him pacing and growing increasingly despondent. The reason? He had picked out a spot on the western promenade that he wanted to jump from, but separated by six lanes of traffic, he was afraid of getting hit by a car on his way there.
  • Once someone attempts a suicide and survive, they are unlikely to have another impulse toward suicide.

And… On an unrelated note, New York Times has this short paragraph on Scott Anderson, the writer of the article. It says, “Scott Anderson is a frequent contributor to the magazine. His last article was about the war in Lebanon in 2006.” How is an article after 2 years considered frequent.

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