Have you ever wondered how socks feel when they seem to have lost their mate? They start off paired up, but some take off and end up in a clothes hamper, while their mates descend to a lower life undercover or under the bed. From then on, there is a risk of becoming a lonely sock.

Therefore, I have decided to start a lonely socks club. You can check out other lonely sock clubs on our website, pair-up.sock, to see who you might match with. There are many lonely socks wondering where their mate is.

Fortunately, a few mates have returned after they’ve gone through some treatment trying to get the stains and dirt out of them. But many never do return and wind up just being someone’s sock monkey, dust rag or beanbag.

Although they are being used, the more fortunate ones, who never return to their mates, may wind up being used to store holiday decorations, or precious trinkets in a drawer.

Unfortunately there have been several deaths in Sockittume, one of the most recent being the one at the Come Clean Laundromat last night. The owner of the Laundromat found him in a washing machine and told the police that the sock had said he wanted to wash up after being used as a hand puppet for days and then left for the dog to play with.

The coroner reported there were large doses of bleach found in the washer and realized someone had put a sock in it, which most likely tore the sock apart.

The writer of this story would like to give his sympathies to the family who lost the sock. I am also accepting donations of socks for the family, preferably size 9 1/2 and made by Nike.

I have written this piece as an analogy (a thing that is comparable to something else in significant respects) because I have heard about two sad incidents involving suicides of two graduates from the same high school my daughter had attended. They left their mates — and children — behind by taking their own lives.

This is not a subject that most people or I like to talk about. However, by doing so I would like to encourage those who are dealing with matters that may wind up in tragic situations, such as suicide, to be more in touch with those who are contemplating such actions.

Whatever you may think about suicide, in most cases it is a decision made out of desperation, hopelessness, isolation and loneliness by the individual — like feeling as though a black hole has consumed them — feeling like there is no way out. But when you reference the survivors, you need to understand what effect it has had on the children, spouses, other family members and friends.

An article I recently read on suicide prevention says, “It is well known that most people contemplating suicide don’t seem to be able to ask for the help that they need to overcome their mental illness. Therefore, those closest to them need to know the warning signs for suicide. The majority of people who are contemplating suicide will tell someone about their intention.”

So, listen when people talk. Make eye contact. And for the love of the person, put down that ridiculous not-so-SmartPhone and be human! Check in on friends struggling with depression. Make an effort to let them know that you are there for them. Friendship is about listening and being present.

Suicide may end the problems and troubles for the person who dies by it, but it creates a ton of problems for the loved ones left behind.

In conclusion, I would like to give my sympathies to those families who have lost their loved ones and continue to deal with the tragedy of their losses.

The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is 1-800-273-8255. For more, go to suicide preventionlifeline.org.

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