Mike Collins wrote:
Quitting is ALWAYS an option. Has to be that way.
Most of the time that's true. But I've been on some climbs where turning around and retreating is exponentially more dangerous than going up over the top. Mentally you throw in the towel, but to survive you keep going up. I have had to run over the top of a peak to get to place where I could shelter from a storm. I was risking death or injury; I heard the static in my ears as I ran over the summit. But I had a better chance at survival by going up and over where there was a crevasse to shelter in than by staying where I was. Not a fun position to be in.
There's lots of motivations for quitting. Facing adversity is much like breaking through a wall when you don't really know for sure what's on the other side. It can be frightening - the unknown is always frightening. So sometimes you quit out of fear. It can be hard. Very hard. So sometimes you quit because it's not worth it, or you just can't do it. And sometimes you just decide you have better things to do, or you just don't care that much. The point is to be honest with yourself and what you want, and to understand why it is that you're quitting. If you give up when you could have succeeded, I'd say you've cheated yourself of something.