DEAR JERKASS: I'm 13, and I'm writing you about my best friend. Her life at home has always sucked, but now it has reached a new level. Her grandmother is no longer paying for her tuition, her parents verbally abuse her and yesterday she attempted suicide. Luckily, she called me and I talked her through it.
I don't know how to help her. I can't talk to her parents because they'll be no help, but I don't know what will happen if I tell my parents. Please help me. -- NEEDS ANSWERS IN CALIFORNIA
DEAR ABOUT TO BE ALONE: I'm not even going to be sensitive about this. Why bother? To this date I have never found a decent reason for people to NOT kill themselves. Sure, it might make other people sad, and the argument exists that "you have your whole life ahead of you, think of all the things you'll miss out on", but the fact is that cognitive function ceases after death. You won't know if you'll miss anything because you'll be dead. You won't care if you "win" or "lose" at life. Hitler and Mother Theresa do not and cannot care what living people think of them, or if people miss them or hate them.
So give this little chestnut to your friend: go ahead and do it. Set a date a year from now, a Death Anniversary. But make sure she gets a bucket list going beforehand! Since she's going to kill herself and life sucks so bad, get her to work on all the things she would at least like to do and think about before she dies. Go ask out that hottie, and don't worry if they reject you because as soon as you're dead you won't feel sad anymore. Get her to tell off her parents. Give all her worldly possessions to people that actually need it (like people and teens living on the street. Like, go out into the actual street and find some homeless kids and tell them how much your life sucks while handing out your tamagotchis). Get a part time job and save up money to run away with, get as far away as you can and never call home for help. Try to make it to somewhere cool, with people different from yourself. If some things might take more than a year, push back the date if she wants. It won't matter if she fails at everything on the list, because it won't matter after she's dead. This is a free pass to try AND fail and not worry about it. Winning and losing don't matter, anymore. If she's going to die anyway, she might as well stir up some shit first. She's already tried doing nothing, might as well try something different.
If she does everything on her bucket list, and only after she has actually tried all of them, then tell her she can kill herself. Tell her she can add to the list whenever she wants, but she can't cross anything off until it's tried.
Your life is what you make it, and if you do nothing to change your circumstances, then grandma's tuition is going to do nothing except keep you alive, not help you live.
*I'm going to give an ass covering caveat here: I'm not a doctor and don't blame me if you don't like the results of my "advice". I take no responsibility for teeny-boppers killing themselves. You want to kill yourself, that's your choice, not mine. Push the button below to talk to real people who want to help you.
Judas' Advice Column
This is where I take a Dear Abby column, and add my own brand of advice. I started by calling it Dear Crabby, but that's taken and JERKASS seems more fun.