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Sanctioned Suicide

Sanctioned Suicide

Mar 17, 2018
  • What is SanctionedSuicide?
Sanctionedsuicide is a forum dedicated to the discussion of mental health, difficult emotions, loss, suicide, well-being, and recovery.
The forum was created in 2018, after the closing of the /r/sanctionedsuicide subreddit on social media site reddit.com. At the time the community was very large, but the closing of the subforum left its members without a place to vent or at times to call home. This website attempts to provide a place to open up discussion of taboo topics that would be censored in other places.

  • Why is it called SanctionedSuicide?
"Sanctioned" can mean a number of things, but in particular it is the acknowledging of something: a consideration, influence, or principle that dictates an ethical choice. It is important to understand that *acknowledging* does not equal *encouraging*. We accept that suicide is a personal, ethical choice, that may be considered in extreme situations (such as by a person in terminal pain) as long as they are in a rational, non-impulsive state. We do not, however, encourage suicide, and this has been the stance of the community since the old days of reddit communities, where sanctionedsuicide lived for many years.
The name of the site was kept identical to that of its original reddit counterpart to keep it familiar and preserve its identity as an empathetic and safe space for everyone.

  • Why does SanctionedSuicide exist?
Good question. Sadly, it feels like depression and suicidal thoughts are a common part of life for many people today. Some feel like they can't keep going, like they need to talk to someone about their problems, vent, or just listen to the experiences others are having to know they are not alone in their struggles.
SanctionedSuicide tries to be just that: A place to share and listen, to understand and empathize, to help and support. It is not the forum what makes this possible; it is the people in it. The people who join every day to share their feelings, or to help others feel understood, or to just nod in silence and provide emotional support.
It may seem strange to rely on a forum when therapists are widely available (at least in developed countries), but there is little surprise in this: Therapists require schedules, payments, face-to-face encounters or at the very least voice chatting, which can be stressful, and carry the "danger" of having emergency services called on the person, which may result in involuntary commitment and/or heavy payments for ambulances and services that the person may not be able to afford in the first place. Danger is in quotes because everything is subjective: A person who is an impulsive, suicidal state could definitely use the help, but not everyone is, and not everyone does. Sometimes a person just wants to talk for a while in an anonymous manner. Moreover, not every therapist fits the needs of every person, while the forum lets users choose who to interact with.
At the end of the day, being on the forum is a voluntary choice. We respect that choice, and understand that suicide is too complex a topic to forbid or force anyone to do anything.
If we had to say in a sentence what the purpose of the forum is, it would be to provide a space to discuss taboo topics without being judged, and to help other people be happier and have a more fulfilling life - suicidal thoughts are a serious concern, and we all deserve a chance at a happy life.

  • Do you provide mental health support?
Yes. If you look at the front page you'll see that our Recovery section is just as prominent as any other, and that we link hotlines and recovery resources at the very top. We do want users to be proactive in their search for well being and happiness.
It should also be remembered that the entirety of the net is bent on denying suicidal people a genuine ability to express themselves. Sometimes a person just wishes to talk about their frustrations without having others tell them what they should do. If you have cancer or face impending homelessness, finding that you are getting the police called on you, being forced into a mental institution, or being linked to a phone number as if it was a type of magical solution may only make you feel worse. In fact, over half of all suicides are committed by people who do not have a mental health condition, supporting the idea that suicide is most of the time a rational, non-impulsive calculated choice. For these individuals, a space to speak their mind and find an empathetic community that can simply sympathise and feel with them might be more valuable than an impersonal phone number thrown their way.
With that said, again, recovery resources and hotlines are readily available on the site for anyone who may need them.

What steps do you take to ensure the safety of users?
For one, applications to create a user on the site are heavily moderated. We only accept users who are over 18 years old, who are of sound mind, and who have the community's best interest in mind.
Users who are deemed to be abusive, manipulative, who encourage, or who discriminate on the forum are banned immediately. We also strictly forbid any kind of "exchange"; that includes selling, buying, sharing, or gifting anything, including money and products. We also will cooperate with authorities if a user is caught attempting to force users to commit acts against their will. Moreover, we provide an account deletion feature available to anyone who needs or wants to leave the site permanently. More than anything, SanctionedSuicide complies with the law.

  • I feel this site should not exist!
Understand that making this site disappear will not fix the issue of suicide. "See no evil, hear no evil" embodies this idea: If this site didn't exist, people in need wouldn't miraculously find themselves feeling better - they would simply have one less space to talk about their problems. Please respect the decision of those who use this website. If you do not, consider discontinuing your visits to the site. Otherwise, you are free to join our community and experience it firsthand.
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