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A life saved


Aliya Bashir
“There should be no fear of death, for the death of the body is but a gentle passing to a much freer life,” was written on tiny bits of paper which were scattered all over in her dimly-lit room. All bright-coloured curtains were spread on white coloured windows and there was hardly any interference of outside world.
As, I entered my friend’s room who had called me up to visit her home, I saw her sunken eyes and shivering hands flipping the photo-album of her childhood . I made a quick remark, what’s the issue and why did you call me at an emergency. “I am sorry. I know you are very busy. But I just want to bid a good bye for the last time before my death,” she said while embracing the album close to her heart. What non-sense you are talking about, “Look I can’t resist my failures. I love my life but I feel very hapless. I can’t even manage my own affairs. No one would be responsible for my death,” she added.
My friend was planning for a suicide attempt after her eight-year love-affair went awry. She was neck- deep in her affair and she was messed up handle her arrogant boy-friend. He had turned elusive and had terrorised her up to the extent that she failed to come out of that tangled relationship. He would kick up a storm for her movement with any of her friends. He had both literally and virtually barred her to talk and move out and in turn, he would keep himself busy throughout the day, leaving my friend in solitude.
One day her boy-friend slapped her in the busy-market of Lal-chowk in Srinagar, “I told you: no ties with your friends. So why was your phone-coming busy,” he had barked as she had stood before him crying and begging. But of little avail.
She refused. “I’d made up my mind. I am going to do it.” I had always heard that suicidal behaviour is a cry for help .I knew it that my friend is going to kill herself, nothing can stop her.
What I did was that I tried to detoxify her from the home. After taking a nice walk of half an hour from the dusty run-down mill of famous gaad-koch (fish-market) we did everything that my friend liked the most. I suggested her to take the last chance of her life by enjoying at least one week in the way she wanted to live and then decide whether to kill her or survive.
After one week she broke up with her boy-friend and went for further studies and started her life with a new beginning. Today, she is a mother of two children, a successful wife (arranged marriage) and professionally sound project coordinator with an international NGO.
There are hundreds of such cases in Kashmir who due to various dimensions of human suffering are going for many suicidal attempts. Nearly all suicidal people suffer from conditions that will pass with time or with the assistance of a recovery program.



Myrthe's picture

Thank you for sharing your

Thank you for sharing your story. Your friend was very fortunate to have you by her side, someone who listened and cared.

pheebsabroad's picture


Is so powerful and in cases of domestic abuse and neglect it can be one's only lifeline outside the home. It had to have been so important for your friend to have you there with her just to have someone beside her in her hour of need. I hope you both continue to live happy fulfilled lives.


Frances Faulkner's picture

spreading the word


Your story sheds light on how easily a woman might consider herself worthless in light of a man telling her that she is, and how little it takes (such a great idea you had for your friend - spending a week truly alive) to break away from that if only we are all paying attention and helping each other out at crucial times. I appreciate hearing this story, as I had recently heard some statistics about suicide among women in India, but had a hard time relating to it without hearing personal stories. I would love to hear more.


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