For instance: You have toddlers in your house. Silence is not a good thing. Silence with an occasional giggle is definitely time for alarm. Most likely you are going to walk into the next room to find: a) Powdered sugar/flour/cornstarch or some other necessary staple spread from here to breakfast, with little tiny, half naked "ghost" toddlers running, hiding and giggling up a storm. Time to break out the vacuum and bubble bath, or better yet, if its warm outside, break out the sprinkler and let them get the mess off themselves by running through it. Oh, but when whatever it is that they've gotten all over themselves is rinsed off, better break out the sunscreen...don't want sunburned "ghosts."
b) Your best make-up spread all over the carpet. Of course said carpet is most likely white or light colored (might want to look into that dark brown your husband is so fond of. Just saying), and the red lipstick smiley face is just the accent you needed to brighten up the room. Not to mention the "tattooed" little one with the bright blue eyelids and kohl eyeliner smiling back at you from the puddle of lace that used to be your wedding dress.
c) Markers. The dreaded sharpies and gel pens that inevitably find their way to your walls, furniture and quite possibly the dog...the cat was smart enough to beat feet and hide in the closet when he got the chance. Now Fido looks like Petey from Little Rascals, except the circle around his eye is purple and green and hot pink, and he has a hangman on his hind end in black permanent marker.
And let's not forget the puppies and kittens out there. They may not have opposable thumbs but sure as the sun rises in the east, they're either going to find trouble or trouble finds them. Its not an if situation, but a when one.
Puppy looks all pooped out from chasing bugs outside and flops by the t.v. console? Hope those wires are protected because that little darling is probably going to teeth on your coaxial cable. Have sauerkraut fermenting on the counter? Hope your kitten doesn't get a taste for sour food. Of course there's also the oft-times present fish tank or bird cage that will keep Fluffy entertained for hours until snack time, then silence is not that particular snack's, I mean, animal's friend. Puppies? Anytime they're quiet (unless they're sleeping, of course, but even then, its good to keep them away from anything they can chew on in their sleep), is cause for suspicion.
So how about anyone over say six? Why is silence suspicious and how could any silence be a good thing? Well, I'm glad you asked.
Let's approach the good, first. Sometimes its good to have that silent time. A time to reflect, to reconnect to you, a time to meditate on God's Word. A time that is only yours and you can be selfish if you want to. Everyone needs that silent time so that they can be in their own little bubble and there's a "no gurls allowd" or "no boyz aloud" sign posted. Its your time to focus on what you need to focus on, whether its a new novel from your favorite author, a piece of classical music, art, hiking, sailing...whatever turns your focus away from the rat race outside for a small moment, well, that's a good thing.
When its not a good thing is when the focus is too much on the "demons" of this world or even our own private ones. When everything seems so overwhelming that even the silence that you impose on yourself is fraught with voices that tell you how worthless you are or that no one would miss you if you're gone. Then, dear friends, silence is not so golden. Silence could be deadly. Realistically, all of the above references to silence, can have consequences that are harmful and to be on one's toes is of the utmost importance, but the silence I'm addressing right here is thisclose to deadly all the time. The deadly I'm talking about, is suicide. Certainly there are those who self mutilate to draw attention to themselves...those who do it to relieve pain, whether mental or physical, and while most are not suicidal, one wrong slip of the knife could turn fatal. The ones who are purely suicidal, though, will show subtle (and sometimes, not so subtle) signs that this is their thought process.
If you, or someone you know exhibit these signs, please, please seek help through the National Suicide Prevention Line (1 (800) 273-8255. The hot line is available 24/7. The website address is: suicidepreventionlifeline.org ). Now, I want to make a disclaimer here. I am not now, nor will I ever be a professional medical anything. I pulled this from the Internet from reliable sources. If you have any doubt as to whether or not someone is thinking of suicide, please give them the hot line information.
These are the some of the signs that a person is thinking of suicide, although not everyone is the same. These are guidelines.
(Excerpt from WebMD)
Suicide is not a mental illness in itself, but a serious potential consequence of treatable mental disorders that include major depression, bipolar disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, borderline personality disorder, schizophrenia, substance use disorders, andanxiety disorders like bulimia and anorexia nervosa.
Suicide Warning Signs
Any of the following could be potential warning signs for suicide:
- Excessive sadness or moodiness: Long-lasting sadness, mood swings, and unexpected rage.
- Hopelessness: Feeling a deep sense of hopelessness about the future, with little expectation that circumstances can improve.
- Sleep problems.
- Sudden calmness: Suddenly becoming calm after a period ofdepression or moodiness can be a sign that the person has made a decision to end his or her life.
- Withdrawal: Choosing to be alone and avoiding friends or social activities also are possible symptoms of depression, a leading cause of suicide. This includes the loss of interest or pleasure in activities the person previously enjoyed.
- Changes in personality and/or appearance: A person who is considering suicide might exhibit a change in attitude or behavior, such as speaking or moving with unusual speed or slowness. In addition, the person might suddenly become less concerned about his or her personal appearance.
- Dangerous or self-harmful behavior: Potentially dangerous behavior, such as reckless driving, engaging in unsafe sex, and increased use of drugs and/or alcohol might indicate that the person no longer values his or her life.
- Recent trauma or life crisis: A major life crises might trigger a suicide attempt. Crises include the death of a loved one or pet, divorce or break-up of a relationship, diagnosis of a major illness, loss of a job, or serious financial problems.
- Making preparations: Often, a person considering suicide will begin to put his or her personal business in order. This might include visiting friends and family members, giving away personal possessions, making a will, and cleaning up his or her room or home. Some people will write a note before committing suicide. Some will buy a firearm or other means like poison.
- Threatening suicide: From 50% to 75% of those considering suicide will give someone -- a friend or relative -- a warning sign. However, not everyone who is considering suicide will say so, and not everyone who threatens suicide will follow through with it. Every threat of suicide should be taken seriously.
Recognizing Suicidal Behavior
Who Is Most Likely to Commit Suicide?Suicide rates are highest in teens, young adults, and the elderly. White men over the age of 65 have the highest rate of suicide. Suicide risk also is higher in the following groups:
Although women are three times as likely to attempt suicide, men are far more likely to complete the act.
- Older people who have lost a spouse through death or divorce
- People who have attempted suicide in the past
- People with a family history of suicide
- People with a friend or co-worker who committed suicide
- People with a history of physical, emotional, or sexual abuse
- People who are unmarried, unskilled, or unemployed
- People with long-term pain or a disabling or terminal illness
- People who are prone to violent or impulsive behavior
- People who have recently been released from a psychiatric hospitalization (This often is a very frightening period of transition.)
- People in certain professions, such as police officers and health careproviders who work with terminally ill patients
- People with substance abuse problems
Can Suicide Be Prevented?Suicide can't be prevented with certainty, but risks can often be reduced with timely intervention. Research suggests that the best way to prevent suicide is to know the risk factors, be alert to the signs of depression and other mental disorders, recognize the warning signs for suicide, and intervene before the person can complete the process of self-destruction.
What Should I Do if I Think Someone is Suicidal?People who receive support from caring friends and family and who have access to mental health services are less likely to act on their suicidal impulses than are those who are socially isolated. If someone you know is exhibiting warning signs for suicide:
- Don't be afraid to ask if he or she is depressed or thinking about suicide.
- Ask if he or she is seeing a therapist or taking medication.
- Rather than trying to talk the person out of suicide, let him or her know that depression is temporary and treatable.
- In some cases, the person just needs to know that someone cares and is looking for the chance to talk about his or her feelings. You can then encourage the person to seek professional help.
Recognizing Suicidal Behavior
What Should I Do if I See the Warning Signs of Suicide?If you believe someone you know is in immediate danger of killing himself or herself:
- Do not leave the person alone. If possible, ask for help from friends or other family members.
- Ask the person to give you any weapons he or she might have. Take away or remove sharp objects or anything else that the person could use to hurt himself or herself.
- If the person is already in psychiatric treatment, help him or her to contact the doctor or therapist for guidance and help.
- Try to keep the person as calm as possible.
- Call 911 or take the person to an emergency room.
Silence can be a good thing. It can be an amusing thing, or a frustrating thing. But sometimes, Silence can be fatal. Please. Call someone and get help.
*I pray that if there are any out there who are seeking self harm that You will hold them in Your Mighty hand, oh Father God, and stop them from seeking to harm to themselves.. Help them to know that You care for them, that they have a purpose in this life, even when they cannot see it now. Focus their eyes, their hearts and their minds to You, Father so that they can see clearly that they are loved by You. Amen.