If a person lost the will to live, how do you help them?

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If a person lost the will to live, how do you help them?

Postby Dugu » Mon Nov 23, 2009 3:56 am

My friend is going through some hard time right now and she told me today she doesn't want to live anymore. She's going to be 50 and she suffering from loneliness. Besides telling her to seek professional help (which she has before), is there a Buddhist solution to this problem?
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Re: If a person lost the will to live, how do you help them?

Postby jcsuperstar » Mon Nov 23, 2009 4:00 am

is she Buddhist?

but a good way to get over yourself is to care about something or someone else
สัพเพ สัตตา สุขีตา โหนตุ

the mountain may be heavy in and of itself, but if you're not trying to carry it it's not heavy to you- Ajaan Suwat
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Re: If a person lost the will to live, how do you help them?

Postby Dugu » Mon Nov 23, 2009 4:03 am

jcsuperstar wrote:is she Buddhist?

but a good way to get over yourself is to care about something or someone else


She's not. She was a Christian at one point.
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Re: If a person lost the will to live, how do you help them?

Postby Cittasanto » Mon Nov 23, 2009 4:04 am

be there for her and listen
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
With Metta
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Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: If a person lost the will to live, how do you help them?

Postby Dugu » Mon Nov 23, 2009 4:06 am

Manapa wrote:be there for her and listen


I have.. it's been slowly spiraling down since last year.
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Re: If a person lost the will to live, how do you help them?

Postby jcsuperstar » Mon Nov 23, 2009 4:07 am

Dugu wrote:
jcsuperstar wrote:is she Buddhist?

but a good way to get over yourself is to care about something or someone else


She's not. She was a Christian at one point.


see a Buddhist answer is probably not going to work then.
สัพเพ สัตตา สุขีตา โหนตุ

the mountain may be heavy in and of itself, but if you're not trying to carry it it's not heavy to you- Ajaan Suwat
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Re: If a person lost the will to live, how do you help them?

Postby Cittasanto » Mon Nov 23, 2009 4:08 am

have you talked to her? I mean actually talk, share your life with her
This offering maybe right, or wrong, but it is one, the other, both, or neither!
With Metta
Upāsaka Cittasanto
Blog, - Some Suttas Translated, Ajahn Chah.
"Others will misconstrue reality due to their personal perspectives, doggedly holding onto and not easily discarding them; We shall not misconstrue reality due to our own personal perspectives, nor doggedly holding onto them, but will discard them easily. This effacement shall be done."
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Re: If a person lost the will to live, how do you help them?

Postby Dugu » Mon Nov 23, 2009 4:10 am

jcsuperstar wrote:
Dugu wrote:
jcsuperstar wrote:is she Buddhist?

but a good way to get over yourself is to care about something or someone else


She's not. She was a Christian at one point.


see a Buddhist answer is probably not going to work then.


What did you have in mind? Never know, it might help her.
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Re: If a person lost the will to live, how do you help them?

Postby jcsuperstar » Mon Nov 23, 2009 4:16 am

all i know is that when i was super low in life, and i mean low. some of what helped me was other people being around, comedy, lots of comedy, its pretty hard to feel down when youre laughing your head off, and goals, any kind of goals, although i would stay away from the type of goals that are easy to fail at as that is just going to reinforce any negative views. fixation on the self that is hurting isn't going to do much good, just remind her you don't have to believe everything you think. but cognitive dissidence can be a good thing, just remember the mind cant think two different things at once, thats why the comedy helps, and the goals help, your mind is fixated on funny not sad, a better future not the dreary past etc.
สัพเพ สัตตา สุขีตา โหนตุ

the mountain may be heavy in and of itself, but if you're not trying to carry it it's not heavy to you- Ajaan Suwat
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Re: If a person lost the will to live, how do you help them?

Postby Dan74 » Mon Nov 23, 2009 4:43 am

Do metta meditation for her.

As much as you can, depending on how much you care.

Also related Tonglen practice may be good. http://www.shambhala.org/teachers/pema/tonglen1.php

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Re: If a person lost the will to live, how do you help them?

Postby pink_trike » Mon Nov 23, 2009 4:48 am

Dugu wrote:My friend is going through some hard time right now and she told me today she doesn't want to live anymore. She's going to be 50 and she suffering from loneliness. Besides telling her to seek professional help (which she has before), is there a Buddhist solution to this problem?

Loneliness is epidemic among older people in our modern society. Older people have very little value in a consumer culture unless they have buckets of disposal cash. This is one of the uglier realities of modern life - older people are disposable and invisible.

You might gently and casually plant the seed that being alone can be an opportunity to get to know oneself better...sort of a "time out" from a busy world - something that most people don't have time for. Often people are lonely because they've never met themselves at any level of depth...they are often perfect strangers to themselves, having molded themselves to external factors all their life. Maybe you can find a way to suggest that there is a whole universe to explore within.

Invite her to hang out in the lounge here. :smile:
Vision is Mind
Mind is Empty
Emptiness is Clear Light
Clear Light is Union
Union is Great Bliss

- Dawa Gyaltsen

---

Disclaimer: I'm a non-religious practitioner of Theravada, Mahayana/Vajrayana, and Tibetan Bon Dzogchen mind-training.
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Re: If a person lost the will to live, how do you help them?

Postby cooran » Mon Nov 23, 2009 4:55 am

Dugu wrote:My friend is going through some hard time right now and she told me today she doesn't want to live anymore. She's going to be 50 and she suffering from loneliness. Besides telling her to seek professional help (which she has before), is there a Buddhist solution to this problem?

Hello Dugu,

Does she have any friends or family who may not realise she is hurting?

metta
Chris
---The trouble is that you think you have time---
---Worry is the Interest, paid in advance, on a debt you may never owe---
---It's not what happens to you in life that is important ~ it's what you do with it ---
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Re: If a person lost the will to live, how do you help them?

Postby Laurens » Mon Nov 23, 2009 2:09 pm

That is a tough question. I guess what I would do is show that person kindness and generousity, I would do my best to bring them joy and show them the other side of things, hopefully that would lift their spirits. Let them truely know that you care for them, it might be all that they need.
"For me, it is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring."

Carl Sagan
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Re: If a person lost the will to live, how do you help them?

Postby Dugu » Mon Nov 23, 2009 9:56 pm

Manapa wrote:have you talked to her? I mean actually talk, share your life with her


Yes, on many occasions. She knows the many struggles I have overcome. She knows I am a Buddhist and I have shared Dharma talks with her. She's beginning to understand the Noble Truths, but she just can't cope at the moment and her mind constantly dwells in the past and worries about the future. It is hardly in the present.
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Re: If a person lost the will to live, how do you help them?

Postby Dugu » Mon Nov 23, 2009 9:58 pm

jcsuperstar wrote:all i know is that when i was super low in life, and i mean low. some of what helped me was other people being around, comedy, lots of comedy, its pretty hard to feel down when youre laughing your head off, and goals, any kind of goals, although i would stay away from the type of goals that are easy to fail at as that is just going to reinforce any negative views. fixation on the self that is hurting isn't going to do much good, just remind her you don't have to believe everything you think. but cognitive dissidence can be a good thing, just remember the mind cant think two different things at once, thats why the comedy helps, and the goals help, your mind is fixated on funny not sad, a better future not the dreary past etc.


Yes I agree. I have encourage her to get out of the house more often.
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Re: If a person lost the will to live, how do you help them?

Postby Dugu » Mon Nov 23, 2009 10:02 pm

pink_trike wrote:
Dugu wrote:My friend is going through some hard time right now and she told me today she doesn't want to live anymore. She's going to be 50 and she suffering from loneliness. Besides telling her to seek professional help (which she has before), is there a Buddhist solution to this problem?

Loneliness is epidemic among older people in our modern society. Older people have very little value in a consumer culture unless they have buckets of disposal cash. This is one of the uglier realities of modern life - older people are disposable and invisible.

You might gently and casually plant the seed that being alone can be an opportunity to get to know oneself better...sort of a "time out" from a busy world - something that most people don't have time for. Often people are lonely because they've never met themselves at any level of depth...they are often perfect strangers to themselves, having molded themselves to external factors all their life. Maybe you can find a way to suggest that there is a whole universe to explore within.

Invite her to hang out in the lounge here. :smile:


Yes you are right pink trike. It is a major problem in this world today. Ironically, I suffer from loneliness at a young age and it drove me to seek a solution to my problems. And that's how I ended up becoming Buddhist and loneliness isn't an issue for me anymore. I like to say I enjoy dwelling in solitude. :namaste:
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Re: If a person lost the will to live, how do you help them?

Postby Dugu » Mon Nov 23, 2009 10:05 pm

Chris wrote:
Dugu wrote:My friend is going through some hard time right now and she told me today she doesn't want to live anymore. She's going to be 50 and she suffering from loneliness. Besides telling her to seek professional help (which she has before), is there a Buddhist solution to this problem?

Hello Dugu,

Does she have any friends or family who may not realise she is hurting?

metta
Chris


She doesn't really have any friends besides me. She has 3 daughters that are grown and have their own lives. They do know she is suffering and they worry about her as well.
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Re: If a person lost the will to live, how do you help them?

Postby acinteyyo » Mon Nov 23, 2009 10:24 pm

Dugu wrote:My friend is going through some hard time right now and she told me today she doesn't want to live anymore. She's going to be 50 and she suffering from loneliness. Besides telling her to seek professional help (which she has before), is there a Buddhist solution to this problem?

Hi Dugu,

you could try to show her that death is not the end of suffering. That this life, the here and now is the only chance to end suffering. Maybe it is also helpful if she would know what suffering is, it's origin, it's cessation and the path which leads to the cessation. So that she maybe find a kind of "working point", which gives her the will to end suffering.

best wishes, acinteyyo
Pubbe cāhaṃ bhikkhave, etarahi ca dukkhañceva paññāpemi, dukkhassa ca nirodhaṃ. (M.22)
Both formerly, monks, and now, it is just suffering that I make known and the ending of suffering.
Pathabyā ekarajjena, saggassa gamanena vā sabbalokādhipaccena, sotāpattiphalaṃ varaṃ. (Dhp 178)
Sole dominion over the earth, going to heaven or lordship over all worlds: the fruit of stream-entry excels them.

:anjali:
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Re: If a person lost the will to live, how do you help them?

Postby Dugu » Mon Nov 23, 2009 10:40 pm

acinteyyo wrote:
Dugu wrote:My friend is going through some hard time right now and she told me today she doesn't want to live anymore. She's going to be 50 and she suffering from loneliness. Besides telling her to seek professional help (which she has before), is there a Buddhist solution to this problem?

Hi Dugu,

you could try to show her that death is not the end of suffering. That this life, the here and now is the only chance to end suffering. Maybe it is also helpful if she would know what suffering is, it's origin, it's cessation and the path which leads to the cessation. So that she maybe find a kind of "working point", which gives her the will to end suffering.

best wishes, acinteyyo


Yes, I have touch on the Four Noble Truths with her before. It hard for her to fully grasp at the moment.
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