Artwork by Kenojuak Ashevak.

Through My Eyes

Article
Suicide

By Calinda Nimiqtaqtuq

Has anyone close to you ever attempt suicide or committed suicide? I’ve had two close people commit suicide. Four out of five people who die by suicide have made at least one previous attempt. It always makes me question myself “Why did they do it?” Also, it makes me question what could I have done to prevent it? They both could have been around, there would have been no sadness happening to all of us. I start feeling guilty, sad and scared when it is someone close to me. The last thing on my mind that comes to me when I think of suicide is, “What if that person had found someone to talk to, they then wouldn’t have killed themselves?” Suicide occurs in all age, economic, social and ethnic boundaries.

Throughout the times before their death, it always seemed to be that those that committed suicide are feeling okay with everything. Although there must have been something bothering them so much, I mean so much, that they had done it. There is no doubt that the people who did it really wanted to talk with someone, but could not find the person that seemed best to talk to. I think it would be best if the elders make meetings to talk to the youth about life and what the Inuit beliefs and stories are. Also, the youth need to open up, talk about what or how they are feeling. The community should get involved and make events for the youth to entertain themselves with. No matter who has done it, I still want to cry when it happens.

There have been many people in Nunavut who has committed suicide, and it’s a tragic thing for small communities to cope to.

All those people who had lost their child, niece, nephew, grandchild, and parents are surely feeling guilty, and wish to see their faces again. Some of the people from where I live who have committed suicide I will never get to meet. Some of the people who committed suicide are my family members, my friends’ family, my boyfriend’s family and some of our friends. No Inuk should feel this bad, and Inuit should not kill themselves over anything,; there will always be a bright light ahead of you. Far or near, it’s still there. For those people who had lost their family members, I give condolences to all of you. So then, I will never see them again.

Suicide affects me because it’s not a natural way to die and it leaves people sad and depressed. Suicide occurs on all ages, economics, social and ethnic boundaries. Another reason why suicide affects me is because I’ve had at least one person try doing it in front of me. You know? It’s not a good thing to see, it’s nothing anyone deserves to see. No matter who has done it, I still want to cry when it happens. I won’t be able to see them again.

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