Crossing the Line: Will We or Won't We?

An earlier post where we wondered whether or not we should provide a suicidal reader precise information as to how many Ambien one needs to take to finally draw down the curtain on this life provoked some interesting responses. Mostly, you don't want us to have any fun. A sampling of the responses we received can be found after the jump, along with our final decision as to dispensing the advice in question. See you on the other side.

  • "My .02 is that you don't supply the lethal dose info. Although I'm sure there are quite a few of your readers who you feel would be doing the world a favor by taking the right amount of pills, things posted on your site are searchable by pretty much anyone. Some hipster whose iPod is stuck on Bright Eyes? Fine...but what about a 14 y/o kid without the access to a counselor or the ability to get help? You not posting it might buy them some extra time if they find themselves in a state of desperation. Just a thought. Keep up the good work."
  • "There is NO need for Gawker to dabble in assisted suicide. Do what you do best - help us procrastinate, not die."
  • "Suicide should be creative, like Lidle in a Plane with a Building. Your enquirer may think he's clever, but his family will not, and they will blame you. Blame as in LAWSUIT."
  • "No, NO, NOOOOOOO. If they're going to do it - they'll do it on their own. Give no assistance, or if you do, steer them to the Hemlock Society. I truly do know someone who got help from the Hemlock Society (although they were suffering from terminal cancer)."
  • "Wow. You guys really DO want user feedback! Holy crap — if someone really did send in an email like that — well, actually — you're handling it quite well. If it's a joke — you've told it to us — and if it's some weird cry for help — you've publicized it... As you were..."
  • "I love Gawker - love it! And 50% of me thinks you're joking about this. There really is no justifiable reason for giving an answer to that incredibly sad question. And seriously: I've done some stupid things in my life - some might have even called me a douchebag. But YOU Gawkers, have REALLY out douched me this time! Douch !"

    On the other hand, there was this:

  • "I'd have to go with answering this one:

    a] Death by pills is a lot cleaner than some other more over-dramatic queen styles. Let's send this one off without the clumpy blood mess all over the hotel bathroom floor or something. We don't want to make some illegal immigrant's day too stressful with having to scrub grout, do we? OK, maybe we do.

    b] What the hell. This one wants a little attention. Why not make somebody's day. -especially if it's their last. What better way to go out than with a send off from the Interweb. It's so "now" or whatever.

    c] I haven't seen a quality chart in some time. I like informative color bars."

    So, all things being equal, we're going to go with the pro-suicide advice. Here you go, sad little e-mailer: You take one pill. You lie down. You sleep. You wake up and look around and remind yourself that, as dark as things might seem, the world is full of wonder and surprise and you may be one day away from undergoing an experience that will change your life and make you see things in an incredibly different way. Depression is a terrible illness, but it can be treated. Death is forever. Choose life.

    Nah, we're just kidding. Take the whole bottle.

    Earlier: Crossing the Line: Gawker Suicide Service