This post is meant for rational discussion. If you are contemplating suicide, please speak to a friend or call a hotline that’s close to you to talk about it.

I hold a belief that while people are often scared of death and don’t want to die, it might have little to do with the fact that they will cease to exist. An important factor is that death is associated with pain, and no one wants to go through an awful lot of pain, even while dying.

To that point, I—and I can’t be the only one—have often wondered how painful exactly it is to take one’s own life. I found some sort of an answer today: suicide methods rated by lethality, time to die and the agony one has to go through. It’s a fascinating read. (I don’t know how they calculated the agony. “Congratulations on your successful suicide. Do you have a few moments to take a quick survey?”)

It is so strange that in 2013, when we can perform the most complex of surgeries without feeling much pain, we still have no way to end our lives* with dignity and without pain. As of now, shotgun to the head is the most effective way we’ve come up with. And that’s a few centuries old method.

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*or to give birth for that matter. Imagine telling our future generations that for the specie that figured out space travel, the most brilliant method we came up with to give birth was, “Push!”

C-sections are not a solution to pain-free birth. They are a solution for complex births and for doctors to have weekends off.

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While we’re at that for some reason I figured that C-sections meant cutting a nice rectangle in the mother’s lower abdomen to remove the baby. Turns out, I’m dumb and in reality only one transverse incision is needed. NSFW image.

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