Peer Review by StepsJK (Australia)

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Through the Darkness

By: punk_princess_23


30,000-The number of people who commit suicide each year in the U.S. 

4, 250-The number of teenagers who decide they just can't go on. 

750,000-The amount of people who tried to kill themselves in the U.S. each year

Hardly anyone wants to talk about suicide
It's a topic that most people would like to avoid
Would like to ignore
We think that if we don't talk about
Depression
Anxiety
Suicide
That will all just...

Go away.

But it won't!
4,250 teens commit suicide every year
That's not counting the teens who just
Think about it
Or who try-
And Fail

So much pressure is put upon teens to 
"Do Well"
And society tells us that we must
Look a certain way and 
Act a certain way
Even though that's just not possible 
Because we are all human.
And we are all unique, in our own way.

Kids with depression think they're
Alone 
But what they don't know
Is the boy sitting next to them in science contemplated 
Suicide last night
What they don't know is that their cashier at the local
McDonald's was hospitalized for overdosing on painkillers.

The average teenager will have a 
Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat 
On a daily basis we see people telling us
What we should look like
What we should wear, 
And who we should be, 
Even if it contradicts our own feelings

So many teenagers feel that they're not worth it
So they try to find worth in someone else
Kids who are 8 years old are having their first kiss
Because love is something that we should experiment with, 
So maybe we can find someone who loves us as much as 
We should love ourselves.

I go on my own Facebook and I see girls and boys alike 
Calling themselves ugly
Saying they're stupid, 
Telling the world that they wish it would all end

And yet, we ignore it, 
We don't believe they want to do it 
Because they post about it so much
But maybe they're just scared
Stuck in a limbo where they're 
Afraid to follow through
But even more terrified of telling someone
How they feel

Because no one will understand, right? 
No one cares about us. 
No one wants us around. 
We're ugly
We're stupid
And we don't matter

So why do we stick around? 

I am a onlooker
I have never had depression
I have never had anxiety
I have no idea what it's like
To feel on a daily basis that 
I don't matter
Because I know I matter

And I know you matter.
Because when I go to school, I see people
That would get into fights for their friends
I see kids who have hopes and dreams, 
I see kids who would do whatever it takes to keep their friends alive
I see kids who don't want to break people's hearts
I see kids who are afraid of what they're going to do
After school 
When we're adults out in the world
I see kids
Who are struggling, but who 
Still 
Get out of bed every day, and try their best
To make it through school 

Life is like a tunnel
Everyone starts at someplace
Some start in the light
And some
Start in the dark, 
And when you're left alone in the dark 
You feel like you'll never get out
You feel like that darkness will stretch on forever

But what you don't know
What 4,250 kids a year don't know
Is that standing next to you 
In the darkness
Are people just like you
You can reach out to them.
They're right along beside you.

Suicide has become so stigmatized that
Some say you are weak
If you try to end your life
Some say you're selfish
But how can it be selfish when all you're thinking about 
Is how much people hate you
And how much they don't care?

How are you weak when you think
You're making life better for everyone else 
By ending your own? 

So when you feel sad or lonely, 
Or believe that life cannot possibly
Go on
Just remember the tunnel
And remember, 
That even if you can't see what ahead, 
There's somebody standing, 
Braving the darkness with you, 
Heading towards the light ahead. 

“In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life: it goes on.” 
~Robert Frost
 

Suicide Statistics from http://www.suicide.org/suicide-faqs.html

Peer Review

I lost my Mum to suicide this year, so this a topic that I feel very strongly about. Just seeing someone writing about it is sure to catch my attention. I also love your style, almost like a poem. It encompasses everything I believe in, and tracks wonderfully through why we should be talking about this, why we aren't talking about this, and how to cope with suicidal thoughts. This is a brilliant speech.


It is just beautiful to read something that fits in so strongly with everything I believe. I love the blatant statement of "I am an onlooker". I can't put my finger on it, but something about it makes the speech better. (Yay, vague compliments!)


Proofreading could get rid of a few random capitalised letters. Also, maybe we have a different internal voice, but I feel like although 97% of this flows beautifully, some bits don't. "Kids with depression think they're [new line] Alone" sounds weird in my head because of the random new line. Also, between "And I know you matter" and "To make it through school", there could be a few pauses thrown in/taken out to make it all flow better.


Apart from those (very small) things -which, to be honest, is just me being picky - there isn't much left for you to do. I love your speech and the fact that someone else out there is talking about this, and your writing style is incredibly beautiful. Keep going! :D


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