View Full Version : Depressed teenager in communication with me
01-28-2005, 02:58 PM
I am at a loss. This kid and I have been exchanging PMs as he is terrified of death. He wants me to agree with his chosen view that death is "dreamless sleep" .Since I won't agree with him, he has resorted to telling me never to make wrong, horrible, and "unhumanist" statements again.
This kid is sick and I don't know what to do.
BTW, he has stated the exact same things in several threads, so I am not divulging any private info here. We seem to have simply taken the verbatim discussion to PM.
01-28-2005, 03:18 PM
I can't imagine a better guess than "dreamless sleep" to describe death, personally. But if you think he's suicidal then you should encourage him to seek the input of a professional counselor, not random, anonymous people posting on an Internet discussion board.
01-28-2005, 03:32 PM
No, he doesn't seem to be suicidal, he just can't seem to accept "non-existence" and gets angry about it. He really, really wants to ensure that his existence matters in some cosmic way. Even when I said "Fine, you're right and I'm wrong" he got mad because I didn't sincerely agree with him. In fact, his arguments have become so nonsensicle and quibbling I don't even know what he is trying to get me to agree to anymore.
I, and several others, have told him to get help, but he refuses saying it will hurt his future employment (which he won't elaborate on).
01-28-2005, 04:36 PM
He really, really wants to ensure that his existence matters in some cosmic way.
Does he smoke a load of pot????
Actually to stop being facetious - here's what I would do personally, ask him how he feels about life when he feels at his lowest. Ask him how he thinks that speaking to you is helpful in any way. Tell him about people who have suffered from depression and have not had their future careers impinged in anyway. Talk to him about the benefits of seeking help early - sometimes with depression things get worse and worse.
Be aware that he might be a discontented individual who is using you, don't allow yourself to get too sucked in, as an internet person you can only offer limited help.
I have no idea of the person you are talking about so these are general things that I would do and of course they could be totally wrong.
Off topic - I'm wondering what the substantive difference is between a dreamless sleep and non-existence is :) And if you want to continue with the subject then ask him how he views his existence before he was born.
Personally I find topics like this interesting, the way people think fascinates me (and I'm always hoping it will give me insight into the way I think too ;)) but for me these topics are explorations of someone else's thoughts - their chances of bringing me round to their point of view is very small (although they may make me re-examine my own beliefs and biases) and I assume that this is the same for the person I'm discussing things with.
01-28-2005, 05:14 PM
I'm wondering what the substantive difference is between a dreamless sleep and non-existence is
The most noticeable difference is that you still exist while you're sleeping (your mind is working even if not conciously, it registers passage of time. Your body is still working, etc.) and you usually wake up.
01-28-2005, 07:39 PM
Hey, is this the guy who was arguing that same point in one of the secular lifestyle fora on IIDB?
01-28-2005, 09:29 PM
Yes seebs. I am not sure why he chose to repeat the discussion with me in PM.
01-29-2005, 03:47 AM
Who is it? I betcha I'd make him feel better. :D
Brandi, be careful. Sometimes mentally ill people can suck you in.
01-29-2005, 04:42 AM
Beth, you're right. I told him I didn't think we should continue our discussions and he should get help.
01-29-2005, 05:26 AM
I thought he reached some kind of understanding over the issue at IIDB?
It really does seem like a tiresome exercise to ponder existence/non-existence in such a way.
The substance that is our body is permanent star-stuff and, therefore, eternal.
His musings are simply over individual life "personality/consciousness".
He is subsequently trying to use his consciousness now to percieve it's own fate without itself after death.
A circular exercise at best. A true tail chaser.
Life isn't ever too short. It's the longest thing anyone will ever do.
02-09-2005, 03:57 PM
Is this (http://www.iidb.org/vbb/showthread.php?t=115080) the guy, Shea? Poor kid; he seems really desperate. :(
02-09-2005, 04:07 PM
That is the guy, livius. He finally stated that my withdrawal from the PM discussion was a forfeit and he "won", as if it were ever a contest :(. I simply didn't respond. He is very desperate to believe whatever it is he is trying to believe.
02-09-2005, 05:30 PM
Do you have any idea what brought on the P&C thread now, some time after the demise of your PM communications? Whatever it is, clearly the "nihilism" issue is preying on his mind.
02-09-2005, 05:39 PM
It does prey on his mind, and he sees it as a personal attack of some kind. You may recall a certain other desperate young man who read anything against his desired state of being as a personal attack. I am reminded of him.
Wow. I would definitely avoid speaking to him. His hostility seems unfounded.
02-10-2005, 12:36 AM
This is horrible. This is so horrible I probably shouldn't even be posting it. But... when that thread popped up in P&C I dearly wished that civilians were allowed to post, so when he accused LadyShea of being a nihilist I could reply "Really? Must be exhausting." Or "Nice marmot!" or "To the best of my knowledge she doesn't have a nine-toed woman, though."
Anyway, that kid does sound really screwed up. I'm sure that you did your best, Shea -- and that's something, considering how famously helpful you are with others' spiritual crises -- but some people are beyond help until they're really committed to accepting help.
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