Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Not a RIP Robin Post

Lately I have seen a lot of posts about Robin Williams. Obviously this is because he committed suicide a few days ago. There are loads of people sharing fond memories, celebrating his life, mourning our loss, and just generally posting about mental health.
To be totally frank, it all makes me pretty angry.

Millions of people all around the world are writing about the tragedy that is, the suicide of Robin Williams. They are writing about the wonderful, kind, caring, warm, and hilarious man that he was, they are writing about how he changed their lives for the better, which is all great, but also part of what makes me so angry.
To all of you who are saying that you already knew that you love Robin Williams, and that you already knew how important he is to you, I say, how often did you tell him that?
This isn't just about Robin either. It is about a whole facet of society just begging to have someone smile at them. This group of severely depressed people who feel so alone and hated that they end up killing themselves, only to then have a giant memorial thrown in their honour, filled with people crying and missing them.
I know some people who have committed suicide, and every single one of those deaths has been contributed to by unkind people such as teachers, parents, 'friends' and even complete strangers who criticise, bully, belittle and ignore. The perpetrators aren't bad people, and they usually don't even realise the impact of what they do.
I hate that we haven't learned the importance of showing people what they mean to you.
I'm not saying that any of this would have made a difference to Robin Williams, I am just saying that it makes a difference.

Before the news of his death was broadcast around the globe, Robin Williams would almost never come up in conversation. There were not many articles, stories or posts dedicated to him. He was nowhere to be seen. Now, the world has exploded with quotes, images, and tributes.
What makes me mad is the timing.
Why is all this love and affection coming out now, now that he is dead and it can no longer brighten his life?
Why the hell does someone have to die before we realise how much they mean to us?

Did you write to him? tweet him? draw him pictures?
Did you ever try to connect with him as a human?
You probably never did. You almost certainly didn't do that last, and most important one.

It happens all the time. All the fucking time.

This is something that I have seen time and time again. People never learn.
Someone we cared about dies, they take their own life, and we are filled with sorrow, but also with regret. Regret for not telling them we had a crush on them, for not smile back at them from across a class room, for teasing them the day before it happened.
This regret should be the sign that something needs to change, that we need to be kind to other people.
Everyone is fighting a battle. We shouldn't be trying to make that fight even harder.

But for the person who ends up dead, it all tends to feel like a whole world of hate, and often just one kind person trying to make a connection makes all the difference.

I hate that people are still feeling so alone and unloved, that death is all they have left.

Smiling at someone on the street might be what convinces them not to jump off the bridge that they were walking to.

Reach across the space between us,
meet me where I stand.
Stretch you arm out across the gap
and take my trembling hand.

All I need is to feel a connection,
to know that someone cares.
People say that I matter,
but they're so caught up in their own affairs.

No one sees that I’m falling,
into this dark abyss of despair.
I feel like I’m drowning in sorrow,
struggling for every gasp of air.

I don’t want to be seen as a whinger,
someone who will just sit and moan.
I’m not looking for attention,
I’m just so tired of being alone.

Cherish the people you love, and most importantly, let them know that they are loved.

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