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5 actors (Gender can vary and be easily changed) scripted dialogue portion is 7 – 8 mins. Free script.
A SUICIDE SESSION
Written by Warren Sager
MODERATOR: Works as an emcee to ask questions of the panel and perhaps lead a discussion afterward.
GUEST #1: A non-believer or atheist, who has lost his job and coincidentally also lost his wife. He is very bitter and has completely given up. He is considering suicide.
GUEST #2: A teenage girl who has Christian friends and non-Christian friends. She is not a believer and she is feeling the pressures of teen-age life. Having just broken up with her boyfriend, she feels that pain and the pressures of schoolwork and grades and getting into college and she is feeling rejected and unloved and is considering ending it all.
GUEST #3: A Christian man and very family oriented. His child was killed and the grief is unbearable. As the father, he blames himself and thinks it would be better if he was gone.
GUEST #4: An elderly person who feels unloved and rejected by family. Perhaps he or she is living in a nursing home in poor health and nobody visits this person. So, it seems that a suicide attempt (overdose of pills) would be the best option to escape and get out of the misery.
MODERATOR: We are here today to talk about a very serious subject: suicide. I have some guests here who I will be interviewing about what is going on in their lives and what they have been contemplating. Let’s hear from our first guest. We will call him, Tom.
GUEST #1: I just figure I have nothing to live for anymore. What’s the use?
MODERATOR: Tell us what happened, Tom.
GUEST #1: Okay. It was like this: Everything was going great, or at least I thought it was. Suddenly I get laid off. Zip! That’s it! 20 years down the tubes! I can’t get another job! I don’t know how to do anything else and I’m too old to learn anything new. I tried, believe me I tried. But being at home and without work… well, I was getting depressed. Not having a job is really demeaning to a guy. My wife was trying to be understanding, but it was really hard. She was a peach. I would have fallen apart sooner if it wasn’t for her. She was my whole life. That was when she was diagnosed with cancer. What little savings we had was quickly drained with medical bills. I just didn’t have the strength to be looking for work while my wife was sick. I was getting sick with worry. And that was it! She lost her battle to cancer and died in just six months! If there is a God, He must hate me or something. I don’t believe in that stuff anyway… and this kind of clinches it for me. There is nothing more in this life than what we have now. We live and we die and it’s over. Well, as far as I’m concerned, my life is over already. I’ll just speed things up and end it now. I might as well. Maybe there is something out there, and I can join my wife. Or I can just be rid of all the pain. That sounds really good to me.
MODERATOR: Our second guest is Stacey and she is 16 years old. She also has been contemplating suicide. Will you tell us what made you think about doing this?
GUEST #2: I broke up with my boyfriend. I know that sounds so small in comparison with others, but it really was a big thing for me. We were doing so well, I thought. He just didn’t love me and wanted to be out of the relationship. He wanted to be able to date other girls. I didn’t want to break up. But that was what ended up happening. We had a fight and then it was just real ugly and it all ended. Now I can’t concentrate on anything. My grades are slipping. If I don’t get them back up, it could mess up my chances of getting into college. My parents are on my back about it. They really want me to be a success, so that they can look like successful parents. That is all they are concerned about. Just how things look to the world, to their friends. I don’t think they even love me. My friends don’t understand me. They try to help. I have some friends, who are Christians, and they are nice and they are trying to help me. But, that is just to give them points with God or something. Sometimes they start in talking about God and how He loves me and how I should become a Christian, but I just don’t see Him doing anything for me. I am miserable all the time. Where is God in this? Where is that love they keep talking about? I think they need to live in my shoes for awhile. No… actually I don’t wish that on anybody. I don’t even want to live in my shoes anymore. I really just want to get away from all of it. How can I do that? I can’t leave school. I can’t forget about college. I can’t go away from my parents. Taking my life has actually come up several times and believe me it is looking better all the time. Maybe then people will begin to understand me.
MODERATOR: Now we come to George, who is a family man, and a Christian… that makes this harder to understand. How can someone who calls himself a Christian think about taking his life?
GUEST #3: I know it is wrong. I think it is a sin to kill yourself, but I know it isn’t the unpardonable sin. You may think that a Christian person would not have any reason to take his life, but in my situation…. well, I have a wife and a child. Well, that’s just it, I had a child. He was taken from us in a split second. We were on our way to a game. He loved to go to the games. It was my fault. I was driving too fast. We were running late. My wife had been bugging me to get ready, so we wouldn’t be late, but I was late anyway, and I knew that parking was going to be murder. I hate missing the start of a game. Suddenly that car came from nowhere, and I was going way too fast to stop or even swerve… of course I did try, and the car flipped over and rolled. My wife was hurt real bad, and our son was killed. My wife may never be the same. She won’t talk to me. She had been telling me to slow down right before it happened. I’ve been to see the pastor, and everyone has been praying for us. But this looks really bad, like I could even be charged with my son’s death and do some time. Fine by me. It was all my fault. I don’t feel bad for him; because I know he is with Jesus now, but the pain of what happened will always be there with me and with my wife. I don’t know what is going to become of her, but I just think it would be better if I were gone. I need to pay for what happened, and that is my way. Living with the pain and the guilt is more than I can bear.
MODERATOR: Our last guest is currently living in a senior assisted care home. She/He feels that she has not much longer on this earth anyway… and she/he just wants to speed up the process. Can you tell us why you want to do that?
GUEST #4: There comes a point in one’s life when you realize that you are no longer viable to society. They have me in a home. No one cares what happens to me, and no one comes to visit me. I’m sick most of the time and even when I’m well, I never feel quite right… there are aches and pains on my aches and pains. I have poor eyesight, so it is hard to read, and I try watching TV, but nothing is interesting, and I have a hard time hearing it. I have no friends, and my family has rejected me. I really have nothing to live for anymore. I see folks in this place kicking the bucket all the time. Some of them have a real hard time of it, and go with a lot of pain and suffering. I would like to just take a bunch of pills and end it all quickly. I don’t even know if anyone would come to my funeral.
MODERATOR: Thank you to all of our guests. It was not easy for you to be here today and tell us your stories. I would like to open up this session to the audience and see if anyone has any questions for our panel. (This is an opportunity for an open discussion on this subject, with each guest staying in character as they answer the questions in the manner that they feel their character would. You could have scripted questions, or just let the members of the audience think of things to ask them or even try to give them reasons why they should not commit suicide. This could work into a good discussion. The actors would need to be able to improvise. Having a speaker come and share after the skit would be a good way to close the session.)