Suicidal
For much of his thirties, Jesse Bering thought he was probably going to kill himself. He was a successful psychologist and writer, with books to his name and bylines in major magazines. But none of that mattered. The impulse to take his own life remained. At times it felt all but inescapable.   Bering survived. And in addition to relief, the fading of his suicidal thoughts brought curiosity. Where had they come from? Would they return? Is the suicidal impulse found in other animals? Or is our vulnerability to suicide a uniquely human evolutionary development? In Suicidal, Bering answers all these questions and more, taking us through the science and psychology of suicide, revealing its cognitive secrets and the subtle tricks our minds play on us when we’re easy emotional prey. Scientific studies, personal stories, and remarkable cross-species comparisons come together to help readers critically analyze their own doomsday thoughts while gaining broad insight into a problem that, tragically, will most likely touch all of us at some point in our lives. But while the subject is certainly a heavy one, Bering’s touch is light. Having been through this himself, he knows that sometimes the most effective response to our darkest moments is a gentle humor, one that, while not denying the seriousness of suffering, at the same time acknowledges our complicated, flawed, and yet precious existence.   Authoritative, accessible, personal, profound—there’s never been a book on suicide like this. It will help you understand yourself and your loved ones, and it will change the way you think about this most vexing of human problems.

Suicidal Details

TitleSuicidal
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseOct 30th, 2018
PublisherUniversity of Chicago Press
ISBN-139780226463322
Rating
GenreNonfiction, Psychology, Health, Mental Health, Mental Illness, Science

Suicidal Review

  • Valerity (Val)
    January 1, 1970
    – All the inconveniences in the world are not considerable enough that a man should die to evade them; and, besides, there being so many, so sudden and unexpected changes in human things, it is hard rightly to judge when we are at the end of our hope…Michel de Montaigne, A Custom of the Isle of Cea (1574)This is quite a good book on the topic of suicide, which seems to be a hot topic this year, with all of the people we have lost to it...think of all the big names that have taken their lives rec – All the inconveniences in the world are not considerable enough that a man should die to evade them; and, besides, there being so many, so sudden and unexpected changes in human things, it is hard rightly to judge when we are at the end of our hope…Michel de Montaigne, A Custom of the Isle of Cea (1574)This is quite a good book on the topic of suicide, which seems to be a hot topic this year, with all of the people we have lost to it...think of all the big names that have taken their lives recently, and maybe the people you know personally too. Written by an author who personally has had issues with it, so he knows whereof he speaks, and has also done his homework, so it makes for very interesting reading on this fascinating subject.The book takes on the question of whether non-human animals commit suicide, among many other issues. Think of the dog who lays by his master’s grave, refusing to eat or leave, brokenheartedly awaiting his return. It also discusses some unusual ways that people have used to commit suicide and delves into different studies and papers on suicide published by different scholars.There’s a bit of something for just about any interest in the subject, and it was worth a read. My thanks for the advance electronic copy that was provided by NetGalley, author Jesse Bering, and the publisher for my fair review.University of Chicago PressPub: Oct 30th, 2018My BookZone blog:https://wordpress.com/post/bookblog20...
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  • Joseph
    January 1, 1970
    Suicidal: Why We Kill Ourselves by Jesse Bering is a study of suicide and with explanations and theories. Bering is an award-winning science writer specializing in evolutionary psychology and human behavior. His “Bering in Mind” column at Scientific American was a 2010 Webby Award Honoree for the Blog-Cultural category by The International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences. Bering’s first book, The Belief Instinct (2011), was included on the American Library Association’s Top 25 Books of the Suicidal: Why We Kill Ourselves by Jesse Bering is a study of suicide and with explanations and theories. Bering is an award-winning science writer specializing in evolutionary psychology and human behavior. His “Bering in Mind” column at Scientific American was a 2010 Webby Award Honoree for the Blog-Cultural category by The International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences. Bering’s first book, The Belief Instinct (2011), was included on the American Library Association’s Top 25 Books of the Year. This was followed by a collection of his previously published essays, Why Is the Penis Shaped Like That? (2012), and Perv (2013), a taboo-breaking work that received widespread critical acclaim and was named as a New York Times Editor’s Choice.Bering holds a Ph.D. in behavioral psychology and uses his expertise and personal experience to create a very readable and informative book on the topic of suicide. Real-world examples as well as theory lift the taboo from the subject. Humans are the only animals that commit suicide (animal "suicide" is explained in the book). When did suicide become a human action? How far back does one have to go to find the first suicide? Dawkins brings up the point of suicide in primitive man and relates it to an artificial action of society. Suicide is new and seems to be a side effect of civilization. Every animal's primary instinct is to live to reproduce as often as possible. Colony insects offer a challenge on the basis that they will die for the colony but, there, in the case of ants the workers are essentially clones of each other and do not reproduce.Bering does not include assisted suicide for those with terminal illnesses in the book but looks at phenomena of suicide contagion, the internet, and societal shame. The methods and evolution of suicide throughout history and the differences between the sexes are covered. Suicide among the religions is briefly discussed, and interestingly the Bible says little on the subject except that several people from Saul to Judas committed suicide without much backlash. When and how did suicide become a sin is discussed as well as how religion plays a role in the act --a religious couple dies together so they can go to a better place together. Bering provides a detailed and informative study of suicide. Having thought of taking his own life, he is in a unique position to offer opinion and insight. Suicidal is a societal and theoretical look at suicide rather than a clinical study.  Despite the subject matter, it is not a depressing read, but rather informative. One cannot help but wonder how taking man out of the wild and creating civilization might have been the genesis of suicide. 
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  • Michelle
    January 1, 1970
    As a gifted academic, research psychologist and professor at Otago University (New Zealand) Jesse Bering is a bestselling author, his books have been translated in several languages. In “Suicidal: Why We Kill Ourselves” Bering delves into what he calls the “specter of suicide”-- among the darkest moments of the human condition. With about one million deaths (globally) each year, it is important to understand suicidal ideation in its various forms and patterns, the heartbreak and grief of survivo As a gifted academic, research psychologist and professor at Otago University (New Zealand) Jesse Bering is a bestselling author, his books have been translated in several languages. In “Suicidal: Why We Kill Ourselves” Bering delves into what he calls the “specter of suicide”-- among the darkest moments of the human condition. With about one million deaths (globally) each year, it is important to understand suicidal ideation in its various forms and patterns, the heartbreak and grief of survivors, many are compelled to seek and search for answers to understand this deadly final act.Throughout the book, Bering shares his personal story: beginning as an anxious gay teen, Bering then had a rewarding grad school education, waves of accomplishment, excellence in combination with crushing academic disappointment and defeat; and later, more impressive success and authorship. In addition, Bering shares his deepest darkest moments and times with the “secrets” of suicidal impulses. Excellent research is combined with scientific and academic findings, literature, true stories from survivors and family members, also the subject of animal suicide make for some interesting and fascinating reading. During war time there is a considerable drop in suicidal deaths: the same statistical decline in America was noted following the assassination of JFK, the Challenger Space Shuttle, and the 9/11 attacks. “To be rooted” observed Simone Weil “is perhaps the most important and least recognized need of the human soul.” Viktor Frankel attributed the Jewish survival rate and lack of suicide deaths from the horrific conditions of the Nazi concentration camps to the “innate human ability to find purpose in life.” In the book, “Suicide and the Holocaust” (2005) suicidologist David Lester reported that suicide deaths were high in the Jewish ghetto’s and concentration camps but either not reported or under reported by Nazi guards. The “Werther Effect”-- the phenomenon and contagion of copy-cat suicide was explored in length. Following the release of the Goethe classic novel “The Sorrows of the Young Werther” (1776) the book was banned in several European countries due to the increase of suicide deaths copied from the book. The controversial Netflix series “13 Reasons Why…” (2017) teen Hanna Barker committed suicide because she felt she was badly treated by others. The disturbing scenes of her death were compared to horror movies. The concern of prevention specialists raised alarms over the risk of the show being aimed at impressionable vulnerable teens. In order to show an “honest” portrayal television executives ignored scientific data. The online media, cyberbullying was covered briefly. A 17 year old teen, Victoria “Vic” McLeod, left behind a detailed journal of four months of her crippling anxiety and suicidal thought process. Vic ended her life after jumping from a 10 story building in Singapore (2014). The journal entries were indeed “extraordinary”. Vic’s parents wanted to share their daughters story in order to help others.There was no discussion of the Aokigahara Forest (a suicide “hot spot”) located at the base of Mt. Fuji. However, an Asian suicide epidemic began after the unusual “burning charcoal death” of Jessica Choi yuk-Chun, a Hong Kong engineering executive (1998). In New Zealand, (suicide was a crime until 1961) the rates of suicide deaths are high. Often, depressed missing individuals are last seen on beaches, relatives plead with the public for any information; when the bodies are found, “No foul play suspected” is listed on the official report. This is not to conceal evidence, but used as a proven tactic in suicide prevention. In the last part of the book, the methods used and detailed in suicide prevention clearly saved lives. However, if an individual is determined to conceal suicidal thoughts or intent to avoid intervention or hospitalization, even a skilled psychiatric mental health professional would be unable to detect a possible suicide attempt/death. In a large psychiatric clinic, The Implicit Association Test (IAT) a five minute computer program that flashed images and words across the screen was a more accurate predictor of people with suicidal risk over doctor interviews The development of new technologies are highly promising in suicide education and prevention. With thanks and appreciation to the University of Chicago Press via NetGalley for the DDC for the purpose of review.
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  • Rob Sica
    January 1, 1970
    As an academic librarian with some familiarity with current scholarship on suicide (through both my research assistance and my recreational interest), I unreservedly and enthusiastically recommend this superbly written, scientifically informed, and richly insightful book accessible to a wide and varied readership. Whether you are fortunate enough to have only a casual or more distantly philosophical interest in the topic, or have been personally touched or harrowed by suicide in the various ways As an academic librarian with some familiarity with current scholarship on suicide (through both my research assistance and my recreational interest), I unreservedly and enthusiastically recommend this superbly written, scientifically informed, and richly insightful book accessible to a wide and varied readership. Whether you are fortunate enough to have only a casual or more distantly philosophical interest in the topic, or have been personally touched or harrowed by suicide in the various ways sensitively and masterfully illuminated by Bering, there is something of lasting value for nearly any possible reader. Bering's unique combination of (1) professional background in cognitive and evolutionary psychology, in which he has made substantial contributions, and in award-winning popular scientific writing, (2) longstanding personal experience contending with suicidal ideation, and (3) exquisitely fluent and dexterous writing skill -- this singular synthesis confers upon SUICIDAL an authority and pathos scarcely matched by any other book in recent years on this darkly enigmatic and perhaps uniquely human phenomenon which, according the the World Health Organization, on average claims a life every 40 seconds.
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  • Bart van der Meer
    January 1, 1970
    Bam, in your face. Wat een rit was dit boek zeg, van de psychologische benadering van zelfmoord tot zeer persoonlijke verhalen van mensen die zelfmoord pleegden. Nogmaals, verplichte kost voor psychologen, maar niet voor iedereen weggelegd.
  • Mrs. Europaea
    January 1, 1970
    In Suicidal, Bering discusses the risk factors of suicide via psychological, sociological, and biological theories. The psychological theories focused on the functioning of the human mind by examining thoughts, emotions, behaviors, etc., while his research on biological theories of suicide are derived from the understanding of suicide behaviors and attempts as they relate to the functioning of the human body was most intriguing as well.Bering discusses how the importance of suicide theories cann In Suicidal, Bering discusses the risk factors of suicide via psychological, sociological, and biological theories. The psychological theories focused on the functioning of the human mind by examining thoughts, emotions, behaviors, etc., while his research on biological theories of suicide are derived from the understanding of suicide behaviors and attempts as they relate to the functioning of the human body was most intriguing as well.Bering discusses how the importance of suicide theories cannot be stressed enough and by gaining understanding of this taboo and controversial issue, potential suicides can be averted. He uses his own experience with suicidal ideation to bring home his points and revelations.
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  • Aimee
    January 1, 1970
    Have you thought about suicide? Have you been affected by suicide? Are you just interested in what causes suicide and what makes some people more susceptible than others? If so, this is an excellent book for you. The book covers:• A brief overview of how genetics and differences in VENs (contributing to our ability to think about what others think of us) in the brain contribute to suicidal ideation.• Parasuicide and theory of mind (attempting to figure out what the individual was thinking prior Have you thought about suicide? Have you been affected by suicide? Are you just interested in what causes suicide and what makes some people more susceptible than others? If so, this is an excellent book for you. The book covers:• A brief overview of how genetics and differences in VENs (contributing to our ability to think about what others think of us) in the brain contribute to suicidal ideation.• Parasuicide and theory of mind (attempting to figure out what the individual was thinking prior to death).• Theories for how suicide works with survival of the fittest• The social contagion of suicide and what makes some suicides more contagious than others and also what part the internet has played.• The six phases in thinking that suicidal people go through when suicidal and how our minds can be tricked into making a fatal decision.• A historical look at changing perspectives of suicide and social/religious forces surrounding the issue now. Also, how the sometimes-irrational stigma we place on suicide a can actually be a protective force (causing people to be less likely to act on those impulses).• How mental health experts can be very bad at deciphering if someone is suicidal and what tools are much more effective. The author beautifully and compassionately unfolds the story and factors that contribute to suicide. He weaves his own personal struggle with suicidal ideation along with the struggles of others who suffer from those same issues or have lost a loved one to suicide. The most powerful example of this was using Victoria McLeod’s diary to take the abstract concepts of the six phases of suicidal thinking and make them tangible and concrete.The author takes a very dark taboo subject and actually makes it more entertaining and easier to read about than you would think possible while still retaining the respect for the subject matter. While he is a bit wordy at times and has a tendency to go off on tangents sometimes, this is a thoughtful, informative book and an excellent read to boot.Thanks so much to Netgalley, the publishers, and the author for providing me with a copy for an honest review.
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  • Diane Hernandez
    January 1, 1970
    Theories abound, but few conclusions are reached in the interesting, but ultimately disappointing, Suicidal: Why We Kill Ourselves.Recently, there has been a spate of celebrity suicides: Kate Spade, Anthony Bourdain and Avicii (Tim Bergling). Despite having an outwardly successful life, these people, and many others over the years felt that suicide was the best choice. Suicidal: Why We Kill Ourselves attempts to answer that question using scientific studies and the author’s own suicidal tendenci Theories abound, but few conclusions are reached in the interesting, but ultimately disappointing, Suicidal: Why We Kill Ourselves.Recently, there has been a spate of celebrity suicides: Kate Spade, Anthony Bourdain and Avicii (Tim Bergling). Despite having an outwardly successful life, these people, and many others over the years felt that suicide was the best choice. Suicidal: Why We Kill Ourselves attempts to answer that question using scientific studies and the author’s own suicidal tendencies as a roadmap.The statistics and studies are fascinating. For example, 43% of suicides are caused by genetics, and 57% are caused by environment. 90% of the genetic issues are mood disorders like depression or bipolar disorder. The worst risk is when a person genetically predisposed to suicide runs into one of the environmental issues like the death of a loved one or loss of a job. The risks stack rather than run concurrently. However, the book’s episodic nature jumps from the police’s difficulty of determining suicidal intent conclusively to whether animals commit suicide to pure scientific research about brain chemistry. Suicidal: Why We Kill Ourselves attempts to answer the “why are people suicidal” question. However, the presentation of a multitude of theories, many of them conflicting, fails to provide a clear answer. The conclusion presents some interesting facts about prevention, which answers only the “how are suicides done” question. The why remains a mystery.Readers interested in how to prevent suicide rather than why suicide occurs will enjoy this book. Also, therapists or police officers interested in learning the results of studies of suicides would appreciate it. However, it is not recommended for families dealing with a suicide that has already occurred as it will generate more questions than answers. Also, anyone contemplating suicide would be better served by reading one of the many self-help or therapeutic books on the subject. 3 stars.Thanks to University of Chicago Press and NetGalley for an advance copy in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Neil H
    January 1, 1970
    I half expected this book to be a frivolous read. I admit bias when the author confesses his literary work with such lurid names as Why Is a Penis Shaped Like That amongst others. But as one of many others who have a history of addiction, mental and suicidal thoughts. I thought this might come in handy with understanding the profundity of taking one's life. Jesse writes and I agree that aside from morality, religious or libertarian we have an immense history of self harm and for loads of fathoma I half expected this book to be a frivolous read. I admit bias when the author confesses his literary work with such lurid names as Why Is a Penis Shaped Like That amongst others. But as one of many others who have a history of addiction, mental and suicidal thoughts. I thought this might come in handy with understanding the profundity of taking one's life. Jesse writes and I agree that aside from morality, religious or libertarian we have an immense history of self harm and for loads of fathomable and mysterious reasons. Some quick to commit, some use it as an attention seeking tool. Whatever the flavors a person's descent into self non existence is. Nobody close to its action/actor is immune to its affects and effects. History and philosophical persuasion aside. Unless we are in their shoes, we will never understand the motivation. It's not a mind disease. It's not a survival or adaptive behaviour. It's a social affliction that persists.
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  • Maddy Reid
    January 1, 1970
    In A Very Human Ending: How suicide haunts our species, Jesse Bering attempts to unravel the seemingly impenetrable mind of the suicidal individual through psychological, biological, evolutionary and sociological exploratory lenses, but perhaps most emotively, through personal testimonies. Exploring Roy Baumeister's stages of suicidality, Bering presents the story of Victoria-a seventeen-year-old who took her own life-in her own candid words taken from her diary, correlating each step with chron In A Very Human Ending: How suicide haunts our species, Jesse Bering attempts to unravel the seemingly impenetrable mind of the suicidal individual through psychological, biological, evolutionary and sociological exploratory lenses, but perhaps most emotively, through personal testimonies. Exploring Roy Baumeister's stages of suicidality, Bering presents the story of Victoria-a seventeen-year-old who took her own life-in her own candid words taken from her diary, correlating each step with chronological entries that evidence such a progressive deterioration in her ability to think her way out of that dark chasm. Bering's theory is that by understanding why humans are the only animals to end their lives whilst fully understanding the finality of the act, it may offer insight into the aspect of human nature that makes us unique in this sense and thus allow "reverse-engineering...to defuse the suicidal brain's default wiring". The subject is covered sensitively and Bering's open discussion around his own battle with suicidal thoughts gives the book a personal feel that makes it all the more compelling, readable and accessible.Suicide rates are rising, according the World Health Organisation (WHO), and are predicted to increase by 2020 from 1 every 40 seconds globally, to 1 every 20 seconds. This worrying trend alone signifies the importance and timeliness of this book. Highly recommended.
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  • MentalHealthAtHome
    January 1, 1970
    Suicidal: Why We Kill Ourselves by psychologist Jesse Bering is an attempt to make sense of the complex phenomenon of suicide from a variety of different angles including psychological, biological, spiritual, and evolutionary.  The author admits that he takes an intellectualized, scientific perspective to try to gain a broader understanding, and he does a good job of examining both the strengths and weaknesses of various ideas on the subject.  He encourages the reader to set preconceptions aside Suicidal: Why We Kill Ourselves by psychologist Jesse Bering is an attempt to make sense of the complex phenomenon of suicide from a variety of different angles including psychological, biological, spiritual, and evolutionary.  The author admits that he takes an intellectualized, scientific perspective to try to gain a broader understanding, and he does a good job of examining both the strengths and weaknesses of various ideas on the subject.  He encourages the reader to set preconceptions aside and consider the array of different experiences of those who struggle with suicidality.  He also brings to the table his own "recurring compulsion to end my life, which flares up like a sore tooth at the whims of bad fortune".The book covers a broad range of biopsychosocial contributors to suicide risk.  Some information may be familiar to the reader, such as the genetic component to suicide risk, while other information may be new, including anthropological evidence that indicates that suicide occurs across many different cultural groups.  The risk of suicide contagion is also discussed, and the Netflix series 13 Reasons Why is considered in this context.Certain phrases in the book resonated very strongly with me and my own experience with suicidality.  Bering writes: "For the truly suicidal, consciousness is incapacitating."  He also writes about the agonizing slowness of time when one feels suicidal, part of a process called cognitive deconstruction: "When each new dawn welcomes what feels like an eternity of mental anguish, the yawning expanse between youth and old age might as well be interminable Hell itself."This is not a book that sidesteps around the grim reality of suicidality.  The author points out the while suicide may appear to come out of nowhere, this is because of the tendency to stay silent about our own unravelling.  He also acknowledges the reality that sometimes people will find themselves in "very tricky situations where, frankly, it's hard not to see suicide as a rational decision".  He expressed his view that over-emphasis on the semantics of suicide does nothing to actually combat the problem of suicide, and may potentially restrict discourse.  While this may be controversial, I'm actually inclined to agree with him.The book includes some controversial and even distasteful ideas, but they are presented in a way that seems geared to inform and examine rather than persuade.  Bering cites one researcher who suggested that from a purely ecological perspective, suicide could be considered adaptive, as it may not ultimately affect the likelihood of that person's genes propagating.  He also mentions the view (although he disagrees with it) that depression results from social problems, and "should abate when a problem is perceived to be truly unsolvable".  The two researchers that put forward this idea described suicide attempts as a sort of trading card to be played to motivate those close to them to help, something one anthropologist referred to this as the "social bargaining hypothesis".One chapter that disturbed me examined the diary left behind on the laptop of a 17-year-old girl who killed herself, which the parents had shared with the author.  It is considered in terms of a theoretical perspective of the stages of suicidality.  To me this felt like a profound invasion of privacy, and I would be horrified at the idea of my journal being shared with the world if I were to die by suicide.  It was not the content of the diary that I found distressing, but the fact that these were her most private, vulnerable thoughts not intended to be shared.A chapter I found fascinating looked at suicide in the context of religion.  The author explains that the Christian bible actually does not explicitly mention suicide, and takes a matter of fact tone with regards to the suicide of such biblical figures as Judas, King Saul, and Samson.  The Catholic church took a strong stance in the fifth century when St. Augustine deemed suicide to be a sin; later in 1485 Saint Thomas Aquinas declared suicide to be one of the worst mortal sins.  The Islamic hadith (sayings of the prophet Mohammed) denounce suicide, and in several Muslim countries attempting suicide is a criminal offense.  Hindu scriptures are ambiguous regarding suicide, but for centuries there was an expectation that widows should self-immolate on their husband's funeral pyre.  The chapter covered a range of other religious traditions, and presented facts rather than making religious arguments.In the acknowledgements at the end of the book, the author admits he was having thoughts of suicide when he began the book, but found the writing of it cathartic.  I was actually experiencing suicidal thoughts as I read the book, but perhaps surprisingly I didn't find it overly triggering.  I freely admit to being very much a geek, and the intellectual aspect of this book certainly connected to that inner geek.  It was highly informative without having any of the dryness and impersonality an an academic work.  I would definitely recommend this book for anyone who's interested in finding out more about the phenomenon of suicidality from a broad perspective.I received a reviewer copy of this book from the publisher through NetGalley.com.
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  • Kat
    January 1, 1970
    A very good albeit terrifying read that examines the reasons, biological, social, moral, and historical, that people have to end their lives. The downward spiral that leads to suicide is a frighteningly easy one to slip down; many of the descriptions of the thought processes and perceptions rang true for me since I've experienced at least the beginnings of that spiral only a few years ago. This book is more story-like in that it uses the author's experiences and anecdotal evidence a lot, but doe A very good albeit terrifying read that examines the reasons, biological, social, moral, and historical, that people have to end their lives. The downward spiral that leads to suicide is a frighteningly easy one to slip down; many of the descriptions of the thought processes and perceptions rang true for me since I've experienced at least the beginnings of that spiral only a few years ago. This book is more story-like in that it uses the author's experiences and anecdotal evidence a lot, but does include "drier" facts and figures, as well as resources and further suggested reading. Definitely a timely book for the modern age.
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  • Aaron
    January 1, 1970
    Very confronting text but still manages to find just enough humor to make this a great read. If you're looking for a self-help book on suicide, this is probably not the book for you. However if you want direct and no BS you will be richly rewarded by reading this. Beware the author is atheist and does not believe in the afterlife so for religious people this book well may offend. For me I found it got under my skin and left me thinking for some time afterward which is my measure of an important Very confronting text but still manages to find just enough humor to make this a great read. If you're looking for a self-help book on suicide, this is probably not the book for you. However if you want direct and no BS you will be richly rewarded by reading this. Beware the author is atheist and does not believe in the afterlife so for religious people this book well may offend. For me I found it got under my skin and left me thinking for some time afterward which is my measure of an important book.
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  • Emma Pulling
    January 1, 1970
    This book seems to me like the author had a word limit to hit so he just wrote about random stuff in places. However, I do think everyone should give this book a read, especially the chapter about a young girl named Vic. Beautifully written
  • Cindy Hall
    January 1, 1970
    Great writing by my mate Jesse about a very difficult and complex topic. Take your time with this one -- especially the chapter about the young woman Vic.
  • Hanna
    January 1, 1970
    This book was jarring and very difficult to read at times. It was also however very good. It was well researched and had a nice mix of anecdotes, scientific data and studies, and philosophy.
  • Oryx
    January 1, 1970
    A Sacksian investigation into suicide that is not just timely, but necessary, vital, groundbreaking and wholly awe-some. 4.6666666698
  • Ruth Cierkens
    January 1, 1970
    Interessante kijk op een heel interessant thema. Heel nuchter geschreven, verschillende visies die aanbod komen en wetenschappelijk onderbouwd. Boeiend!
  • Bob
    January 1, 1970
    Outstanding, timely book on an important subject. Dr. Bering does an excellent job of summarizing what we know about suicide while weaving in his own struggles with suicidal ideation. Research results are outlined and complemented by relevant experiences, including current media (e.g., 13 Reasons Why) and the journal entries and notes left by people who died by suicide. It was especially helpful to read two chapters focused on the 1990 research of Roy Baumeister on why people die by suicide (i.e Outstanding, timely book on an important subject. Dr. Bering does an excellent job of summarizing what we know about suicide while weaving in his own struggles with suicidal ideation. Research results are outlined and complemented by relevant experiences, including current media (e.g., 13 Reasons Why) and the journal entries and notes left by people who died by suicide. It was especially helpful to read two chapters focused on the 1990 research of Roy Baumeister on why people die by suicide (i.e., Suicide as escape from self, http://psycnet.apa.org/buy/1990-14898...). Bering helps show how what we know so far about suicide has transformed over time, yet there is still so much more left for us to know. As a suicide prevention advocate, I found it helpful to read detailed descriptions that help uncover the intricacies, complexities, and ambivalence inherent in the mind and behavior of the suicidal person.Thanks to the publisher for allowing me to read the advance net galley of this book.
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  • Seth
    January 1, 1970
    Have you ever talked with someone and you never knew exactly what they were getting at, or how what they were talking about was related? If yes, then you know how this book will read. While reading this book I could never really understand what the author's conclusion was at the end of each chapter, what the content in the chapter related to each other in the chapter, and sometimes how the chapter was related to suicide. The author, who said this in the beginning of the book, cherry-picked data, Have you ever talked with someone and you never knew exactly what they were getting at, or how what they were talking about was related? If yes, then you know how this book will read. While reading this book I could never really understand what the author's conclusion was at the end of each chapter, what the content in the chapter related to each other in the chapter, and sometimes how the chapter was related to suicide. The author, who said this in the beginning of the book, cherry-picked data, and that is clear; he also mostly included theories that he agreed with, and some he absolutely disagreed with. This book is by no means an objective overview of suicide theories. I was left very disappointed; it offered no insight. I would suggest reading other books on suicide. [Got an ARC from NetGalley.com]
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