Updated: Aug 10, 2021
Written by Stacey Freedenthal, PhD, LCSW
Often, intense, ongoing psychological pain fuels chronic suicidal thoughts. But even seemingly minor challenges can intensify the wish to die.
Frank King captures this dynamic well in his TedX talk, A Matter of Laugh or Death. Although King is a comedian, he provides this example in all seriousness:
“See, people don’t understand. Let’s say my car breaks down. I have three choices: Get it fixed, get a new one, or I could just kill myself. I know, doesn’t that sound absurd? But that thought actually pops into my head… It’s always on the menu.”
Some people say it comforts them to know they can die by suicide if ever the pain of life gets to be too much for them. The soothing nature of having an escape has led some experts to refer to “suicide fantasy as life-sustaining recourse.”