Menu

Vishal Ostwal

I Write About Life

Life Lessons from People Who Committed Suicide

A few days ago I was playing Castle of Glass. I’ve been listening to Linkin Park since I was in high-school. It hurts to know that Chester hanged himself.


I don’t know why he did so. I don’t even want to get into whether suicide is right or wrong – I haven’t been through those sufferings, after all.

However, it hurts to know how some inspiring people killed themselves and then they’re defined by the way they ended their lives.

Yet, they were about a lot more stories and feelings. It seems equally important to talk about their lives as much as their controversial deaths.

So, what can they really teach?

I’ve admired several artists and people merely for their personalities – even if I haven’t necessarily read their autobiographies (or known them in person, obviously).

Still, when I observe the kind of lives they lived, it appears that they had some beautiful perspectives about life itself.

Before they decided to shoot or hang themselves, they were completely normal humans who were actually having the kind of success and blissful life one could wish for.

Then, what did they really want us to know about life while they were at their best?

Here’s a quick list of life lessons from people who committed suicide

1. Ernest Hemingway

“Every man’s life ends the same way. It is only the details of how he lived and how he died that distinguish one man from another.”

Maybe we’re all the same path to finding contentment, happiness or something we don’t even know we want – still, the journey itself matters more than anything else.

Hemmingway shot himself at the age of 61.

2. Kurt Kobain

“I really haven’t had that exciting of a life. There are a lot of things I wish I would have done, instead of just sitting around and complaining about having a boring life. So I pretty much like to make it up. I’d rather tell a story about somebody else.”

Kurt Kobain, who led the Nirvana rock band once, wasn’t satisfied with his own life. He had mentioned his feelings in his suicide letter.

Yet, what can be learned is that some blankness always exists in life – even when you’re at your best. What matters in the end, is simply what matters to you.

Kurt Kobain suicided by shooting himself at the young age of 27.

3. Avicii

“When I was 16, my father said, ‘You can do anything you want with your life, you just have to be willing to work hard to get it.’ That’s when I decided when I die, I want to be remembered for the life I live, not the money I make.”

It’s a perfect definition for a meaningful life. In the end, the best that one can ask for is to live a life that’s worthwhile and is memorable.

It’s far more noble and satisfying than fulfilling selfish personal motives. Life’s meant to be about a greater idea or purpose.

Avicii injured himself with a broken wine bottle until he suffered from blood loss and finally died.

4. Vincent Van Gogh

“As we advance in life it becomes more and more difficult, but in fighting the difficulties the inmost strength of the heart is developed.”

Van Gogh may resemble a hopeless example to many, still, he nobly spent a lifetime creating art and doing the work he loved.

That matters, because most people can almost never gather the courage to persist for so long. Now, he’s considered as a legend.

Van Gogh shot himself. His last words were,“this sadness will last forever.”

4. Chester Bennington

“I don’t like to hold back, because that’s how you hurt yourself.”

We’re all fearful, and we gather a pile of “I should’ve”s as we grow old. But there are sudden realizations when we find what we want – and going after it makes sense. Holding back seems too hard, so we set ourselves free and we live.

Chester hanged himself at his home in California, at the age of 41.

5. Virginia Woolf

“If you do not tell the truth about yourself you cannot tell it about other people.”

It’s alright to be vulnerable and weak. We lie to ourselves and act like we’re absolutely normal beings – although we’re not.

It’s only when we decide to peel-off our fake masks and strip our feelings that we actually feel alive.

Virginia Woolf wrote a suicide letter and drowned in a river near her house at the age of 59. Her body was found three weeks later.

6. Robin Williams

“No matter what people tell you, words and ideas can change the world.”

Finally, it’s important to know that the tiny stuff you do, as an artist or as a human, really matters.

It’s the little things we do which finally make the world what it really is. And our words and ideas as such things. They disperse in the universe – and wonderful things happen.

Robin Williams hanged himself at the age of 63 years in California.

The conclusion

If there has to be a conclusion to this post (which I don’t think matters), then it is that we remember the honest things people talk about and live by.

People can behave wise, remain happy and live a perfect life – but you never know when they might just give up on life. That doesn’t make them cowards. Their lives still remain inspiring.

Leave a Reply