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Lines In The Sand

Every relationship has ground rules, and everyone who has been in a relationship for an appreciable length of time knows what they are.

So when you’re arguing, you know that there are certain buttons you just don’t push, certain subjects that you just don’t broach.

You Just Don’t Go There.

And when you cross those boundaries, you know there will be consequences, ranging from getting the cold shoulder for the next few days, to unwilling celibacy for the foreseeable future, to having her/him toss you out on your ass.

And when your argument spills over into physical violence, expect that one or both of you will go to jail when the cops get involved.

Likewise, there are some things you Just Don’t Get To Say.

If your spouse/lover/life partner/ babydaddy chose to get the police involved, or if a third party overheard your argument and called 911…

… well, suffice it to say we don’t grant Mulligans. You don’t get to take it back.

And chief among those things You Just Don’t Get To Say in an argument is, “I’m just going to kill myself.”

Almost as bad, but without the implied threat, is, “I wish I was dead.”

Make the threat more specific, like say, threatening a specific way to do harm to yourself, just adds the element of a defined plan to your suicide threat, and makes it all the more credible.

Say those things, and I can guarantee you one outcome: You. Will. Go. To. The. Hospital.

Your only choices are whether you go restrained or unrestrained. You don’t get to say no any more.

And yes, I am perfectly willing to believe that you said it in the heat of anger and didn’t really mean it.

I also believe that someone who seriously intends to kill him/herself would be willing to tell any lie necessary to get the cops and paramedics to leave so they can get on with mixing their hemlock smoothie.

You don’t get to be that person.

And no, I don’t really give a rat’s ass if you get a mental health record or if you have class/work/social engagements in the morning that you just can’t miss.

Neither am I going to lose sleep over the fact that a 48-hour stint in the psych ward ruins your chance at that law enforcement career you’ve been so zealously pursuing, or takes you out if the running for Man Of The Year at the local Rotary Club.

Pleading with me for lenience is only going to fall on deaf ears. The only leniency you get is the ability to choose the pleasantness of the ride.

You made the threat. I don’t get to decide whether it is credible, nor do I want that responsibility. Plead your case to the ED doc and the mental health tech if you want. Sometimes, if they believe your story, they’ll cut you loose.

But it’s my job to get you there for that conversation, and get you there I will.

Fighting with me is pointless. I will win that fight, every single time, and all your struggle only guarantees that you will spend the next 48-72 hours walking around in shoes without laces and talking to psychiatrists about things you’d rather not discuss with strangers.

So, consequences.

Don’t like ’em, then don’t say those things. Don’t cross that line in the sand.

Hugs and Kisses,
Your friendly neighborhood Ambulance Driver

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