Another Suicide rate record high. 685 deaths.
More articles with ‘WHERE TO GET HELP’ lists of phone numbers as if that changes anything.
More young men, older men and old men destroying themselves in the ultimate act of self mutilation and despair.
Tell those men in the grave about how much privilege they have.
No connection between the suicide rate with male depression and the negative messages we bombard men with.
We NEVER as the why of suicide!
We never ask WHY so many young men kill themselves!
We never ask WHY so many older men kill themselves!
We never ask WHY so many Māori & PI men kill themselves!
In a media landscape where men are the first to be blamed and smeared, we never ask what that’s doing, we just mock and laugh their fragile toxic masculinity and drink their ‘delicious’ tears.
Suicide is like a cultural scab we no longer pick at because the shame is too great and the weeping wound too painful to even acknowledge.
The horror of our suicide rate gives us a glimpse behind the ‘she’ll be right’ facade of our society and the dark torment of an alpha male macho mental landscape that is terribly fragile.
Our under funded social infrastructure, our ‘me first’ consumerism, our 30 years of neoliberal mythology, our disconnection from one another, our untreated pain, our lack of hope from grinding poverty in a first world country, our damaged masculinity, the intergenerational consequences of colonialism, our unspoken rage culture, our inability to express emotion beyond anger – all of this demands questions we don’t want to hear and the shame of suicide continues to hide and smother any healing.
In a country that has no religious faith and all the maturity of a can of coke, the bonds which keep us attached are withered and disconnected. In our fetishisation of individualism we have lost the central part of the human condition – connection.
We have traded in our interwoven threads of whanau, friendship and kin for a rat race where no one wins.
The reason we can’t talk about suicide is because we can’t stand to talk about the dark treacle of self hate and loneliness at the core of consumer culture. We don’t dare confront the hollowness of our existence on these far flung rocks for fear of what we will reveal about ourselves.
Damaged individuals competing for a self identity too fragile for the storms and tempests of life.
Thanks to neoliberalism, we are further from each other than ever before.
Look at the manner in which our suicide rates jumped after the neoliberal reforms of the 1980s, where we moved away from the communal towards the individual…
…we huddle frightened on these lonely crags at the end of the world and slowly one by one slip off into the swallowing dark. Until we are prepared to confront many of the individualism-over-all myths and rebuild our tattered communities, our suicide rate will remain reminding us of our whispered deceptions.
We refuse to ask the why of suicide because we are too frightened to know the answer is a reflection of the shallow and lonely community we have become. Instead we reel off a list of phone numbers whenever we dare mention suicide as if that means a fucking thing.
We are broken nation of fatherless sons and no one wants to admit that or challenge it.