Capes on the Couch Blog Doc’s Issues: Vash Hates Suicide, but He Hurts Himself

Doc’s Issues: Vash Hates Suicide, but He Hurts Himself


Life at all costs. Is there any more that needs to be said?

Not if you’re Vash the Stampede. September is Suicide Awareness Month. Fitting that Anthony and I ended our sabbatical with a character study on the one who put it best. “Suicide? To tell you the truth, I disapprove of suicide more than anything.” And yet, he places himself at risk when few others would be willing to do so. He’s quite durable. The scars prove that. And yet, that makes me worry even more about him.

See, Vash is representative of the millions of people in the world who carry a great burden. They’re the caregivers. They sacrifice parts of their routine lives (careers, relationships, hobbies) to make sure that others still have a place in the world. They’re considered selfless in a chaotic miasma of selfish hypocrites looking to advance their status in life. They do it for family. They do it for the disabled. They do it for the oft forgotten. Bless them, please. But they are at risk. As each kind gesture goes unnoticed, they become resentful. As their own actions lead to physical exhaustion, they lose a sense of control. As each perceived opportunity slips by, they become depressed. Plus, there’s the chance their own source of effort, the person(s) they hold so dear, cause more turmoil for them. I’m sure misery loves company at that point.

Being there for someone in a time of need is one of the best things a person can do for humanity. But it comes with a heavy price. Vash has tasked himself with protecting a whole planet…and he’s got a whooooooole lot of time to kill…um, you get the point.  Is there anyone who knows how to handle outliving the ones they love? Imagine that happening several generations in a row. Where does it end? Who fills their cup when they are considered the one and only reservoir? (Hint: if you are in this situation and you don’t have an answer to that question, then you yourself are at risk).

I’m thankful that Vash has such a clear purpose. Sure, there are shades of gray that get worse at the end of life. Hospice is an amazing, underutilized service. Look up what a POLST form is (if it’s in your state), or at least get medical proxy and advance directives written. Tell people what your wishes are so the ones remaining are not guessing. But I beg of you, do it when you can still remember the good in yourself, the worthiness of others, and not in a moment of temporary panic and anguish. Those types of decisions should NOT come in the form of a suicide note. It should be so that you have lived whatever natural progression of value-filled existence has run its course, optimistically with friends and family surrounding you in the ultimate form of closure.

Not with untreated mental conditions.

Not from a suicide attempt.

Not from a reckless path of YOLO. (Hey Vash. This may be a bit controversial. You know those destroyed cities that weren’t your fault? They were your problem. You gave your brother the ability to control you because you refused to acknowledge or develop any part of yourself beyond caring for others. Thanks for that.)

Hmph. Maybe not life at all costs. Quality of life at all costs. That’s approximately correct.

PURSUIT of quality of life at all costs. That’s it. That’s my take.

Just a friendly reminder that I’m glad you’re still here, and I hope that things continue to get better for you. You are not alone, and help is out there.

~ Doctor Issues

Apple Podcasts: here

Google Play: here

Stitcher: here

TuneIn: here

iHeartRadio: here







Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Related Post