Posted by: Spacehamster74 | 01/07/2011

It takes more guts to go on living…

I don’t like sharing depressing news with people (for obvious reasons). But what was chronicled in this article was so shocking that I had to write about it. Bill Zeller was a brilliant Fifth Year graduate student in Computer Science. He hadn’t even left Uni and he was already developing some, quite frankly, really great applications. He was popular, widely respected, and it appears that he had one heck of a future ahead of him.

Here’s the suicide letter he wrote (warning: It’s really depressing).

I can certainly empathize a little with what Bill Zeller wrote about. My teenage years were socially isolated and very lonely. Looks and appearances are everything when you’re a teenager. Let’s face it, a 16 year-old overweight acne-ridden Asian guy isn’t going to have many friends, right? There were some really dark moments when I honestly contemplated doing what Bill Zeller did. And then I remembered a quote from a book I read: “It takes more guts to go on living than to just give up and die.”. It’s twenty years later, and I’m incredibly grateful that I listened to that advice.

I’ve never talked with anyone about this. Ever. Partly because at the time I believe it would’ve brought shame and embarrassment upon my family. Also because I don’t think my parents would’ve been very sympathetic to someone with a potential mental issue  that really did need treatment. And because I’m certain that people would’ve laughed at me and despised me even more than they already did. And mostly because, twenty years on, I’d left it all behind me and became a better well-adjusted person in the process. Looking back on that dark period of my life, I’m amazed and extraordinarily grateful that I made it out the other end.

To anyone reading this who’s either going through what I did back then, or contemplating doing what Bill Zeller did, remember this: You are not alone. There are approximately 6 billion people living on this planet, and I can guarantee that quite a few of them are going through what you’re experiencing. Talk to someone. Write it down. Get help. Just don’t give up, because it takes more courage to go on living than to just give up and die.

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