I divorced my husband just over two years ago after a 20+ year marriage. He was on a path of self-destruction and I could no longer be a part of what he had become. His decline accelerated over the next two years until this morning when he called to tell me he intended to kill himself and he just wanted to say goodbye and thank you for trying my best. A part of me is attempting to convince myself that I must do something to stop him while another is telling me that I must trust God to handle such a serious situation and accept the outcome without judgment or guilt. I don't think any issue has left me so completely divided. Is it my place to believe I can save anyone? Am I obligated under the ideas of love and compassion to stop him, or does love and compassion allow for letting the suffering complete itself in this way if a person chooses it?
We cannot help someone who refuses to be helped, and we only damage ourselves trying to save someone who is intent on self-destruction. But this doesn't mean we stand by and just watch someone we love take the dark path. In this instance, a man calls to announce his intention, which means he wants attention. (Should he directly intend to kill himself, he would have done so.) Which leaves this: If giving your attention means being drawn back into a destructive relationship for the sake of trying to reconcile something that can't be reconciled, then there is no responsibility to do so. What's left, realizing some action must be taken? Call in some other family members, or an outside authority... and inform them of this man's imbalanced state, and his pronouncement to take his own life.
It is very hard to watch someone destroy his or her own life, but whether this is a slow corruption or a final act of desperation doesn't change the fact that if someone is intent on killing himself, there is no law that says you must die with them. Again, there is clearly some action to be taken here... as a last effort to save a human life, but whose effort this is to be... is something only you can decide.