Before you post online that you’re glad someone is dead, consider this.
This week, former Glee star Mark Salling died. Media reports say it was suicide. Salling was facing prison time following a guilty plea to child pornography charges. He was scheduled for sentencing in March.
Several people in the social media universe are arguing about whether or not it’s acceptable to publicly post that you are glad that someone ended their life. Particularly someone who did something as heinous as keep and receive child pornography.
It is not acceptable.
It’s difficult to say how someone should feel about another person’s death, however, it’s important to remember the possible effects of your own behavior when you publicly declare that a person is a monster and does not deserve any sympathy or empathy.
Let’s suppose for a moment that you have decided that you are glad someone killed themselves. Even further, let’s suppose that you are so glad about it that you decide to publicly state it on social media with no regard for whether the person’s mother, father, siblings, or children see your post. You have decided you don’t care about these people. Got it.
Now think about the people considering suicide right now. They are everywhere. Most of these people have never committed a crime that would meet the “monster” standard. These are men and women, young and old who are struggling every minute of every day. They are so desperate to be out of pain that suicide is something they feel will make everything better for everyone. Yes, everyone. That’s because when a person is close to the final decision to commit suicide, they have a dark cloud over them that no longer permits them to think rationally. They stop thinking people will miss them and start believing that the people who care about them will be relieved and grateful they’re gone. No matter how far that is from the truth, that’s what they believe.
Now consider that this incredibly desperate person who is no longer thinking rationally, sees your post that you’re grateful a bad person completed suicide. They don’t just see one post, they see a hundred. Those posts have put in to print what this person in crisis is already rationalizing: people who are unworthy are doing others a favor when they kill themselves. That message could have tragic consequences.
And it could be avoided by keeping your feelings out of public view.
Still don’t care? Perhaps you’re the monster.
If you are considering suicide, there is help. Please call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (1-800-273-TALK . Someone is ready to talk to you.
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