Hi, I’ve asked many Halacha shallow to you before. I’m sorry to involve you in this, but my cousin, a 21 yr old girl suffering from depression, and stays in her house a lot of the day. She sees psychologists and takes medication. She doesn’t date.
She recently told me that she made a decision she is not going to try anything anymore and will wait to enjoy things in the afterlife. She talks about living a life of yisurim. I don’t think it’s just her being in a bad mood because she’s started to say it many times. She has mentioned that she was thinking of killing herself but it’s assur. It is very hard for me to hear this and I told her I don’t see how what she decided to do (give up on life) is any different than suicide halachically. In addition, she is very yeshivish and is 21 years old so I’m worried she will not be able to get a shidduch if she waits around doing this too much longer.
What is the Halacha? Is she correct saying that she has a choice to do this over killing herself r”l?
Halachically they aren’t the same thing, because one is doing a positive action and the other isn’t. Never the less we are commanded to keep ourselves healthy, and to promote our lives, as the Torah says “v’chai bohem”. However this is not the real issue here. We have someone that is depressed and in dire need of help.
We have to try to find her ways to make her happy, lift her up and feel accomplished. She needs people that will befriend her, call her on the phone and take an interest in her. She doesn’t have a job, we need to help her find one. Maybe slowly get her involved doing chesed for other people, ( babysitting, visiting sick people, helping older people, helping out in a chesed organization, working for a gemach) . When a person gives to others, it gives them a sense of importance. She is talking about yisurim because this is what she is experiencing.
Another suggestion .It would help her out to concentrate on making her tefillah better. After having a heart- to- heart talk with H-shem, will make her feel closer to Him, and might make her feel better. There are a few English books with a daily two minute lesson, and chizuk iin davening, such as “Praying with fire”. She might find it helpful.
She might also find that listening to Chazak, a hotline with may different type of speeches and stories that will give her chizuk. Their number is 718-258-2008 in the USA , and in Israel 03-929-0707. A particularly recommended extension is “Daily Emuna” by R’ David Ashear shit”a.
May HKB”H give both her and you the strength to pull through this and all of your nisyonos and challenges.