Suicide – Riding Through Difficult Emotions Sometimes life may seem hopeless, we need to learn how to cope with painful emotions

I’ve loved watching Anthony Bourdain’s Food Travel shows.

Those dark bleak days when alone parenting my child, struggling with depression, and hopelessness. I’d switch on the TV to watch Anthony’s No Reservations. My son and I would forget our worries and be lost in the fascinating world of different foods in exotic places.

Suicide – Riding Through Difficult Emotions
Understanding our emotions helps us manage and control them  

We did not travel to any exotic places, but my son and I have had some fun memories of eating in small, cheap places on our travels where the food was interesting.

Thanks to Anthony Bourdain he made eating even in ordinary places glamorous and exciting.

Bourdain’s Suicide – A Personal Loss

Hearing about Anthony Bourdain’s suicide has felt like a personal loss.

And that he leaves behind a young daughter makes me feel doubly sad.

Couldn’t the thought of his little daughter stop him from taking this drastic step?

Struggling through years of abuse, suicide was just a thought away. Even though I’ve never got down to it. There were times I seriously thought of doing it. But somehow I managed to ride the wave of pain to hope. Believing there is a solution down the road. And thus I have been pushing myself to overcome the waves of sadness and despair.

Moreover, since becoming a mother, even in my most hopeless times, the thought of my son alone was a pain that overcame every other pain.

Psychotherapist Kristin Barton Cuthriell, in her book The Snowball Effect, explains how to ride through difficult emotions

Emotions are temporary. They do pass. Sometimes we just need to be able to ride the wave and resist the urge to do anything at all. When an upsetting event occurs, if we can just stop for a moment, identify the emotions that we are feeling, accept them without judging them, and remind ourselves that they will pass, we may find the courage to endure them for a little while.

In that small space between the event and your response, remind yourself to ride the wave, and you will, without a doubt, make a wiser decision about how to handle the situation. Remember, emotions make us human. We can experience our feelings and make rational decisions all at the same time. We just need to make sure that we are in a wise state of mind before we respond. Ride the wave of emotion without reacting at all. It definitely is a wave worth riding.

Sadly the punchline of the show No Reservations was:

The trip No Reservations takes us on is not about easy answers or giving up. It’s about seeing the world with open eyes, stepping outside your comfort zone, and taking the bitter with the sweet.

Oh, why couldn’t Bourdain believe and actually have the strength to live that maxim?

Riding Difficult Emotions

From my own experience, I can say that even though it may seem tough and hopeless. We need to learn to steady the board and surf on it. Believing that the next wave will wash you safely ashore.

Believing and trusting that all is not lost even though we may be all wet and battered.  At these difficult times, we need to know how to ride the wave of painful emotions, Accepting and tolerating the emotion without jumping to a quick fix of permanently stopping it.

Teaching our kids how to ride the waves of difficult times is one of the best life skills we can empower our kids with. Suicide is never the solution. Tough times don’t last but tough people do.

Image Source: Pixabay

Further Reading:

Whole Again: Healing Your Heart and Rediscovering Your True Self After Toxic Relationships and Emotional Abuse – Jackson MacKenzie

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Linda Chapman
Linda Chapman
5 years ago

Thx. As a survivor of decades of suicidal ideations & numerous attempts…glad 2 have gained control over my spiraling destructive thinking patterns. We are so easily manipulated until we do. I personally find Anthony Bourdain a highly suspicious suicide candidate. He exemplified the opposite attitude towards life. My view shows a guy that let his enjoyment of the “quest for the best of life”…take him too far. Feels like drug use & playing with the wrong friends did him in. I do pray his sacrifice will save his daughters life. Dangerous games the hungry play sometimes…