4 Things I Want People to Know About Suicide
Suicide is becoming all too common in our society. Sometimes when people feel like they have no other place to turn, suicide becomes the only perceivable option.
As someone who has attempted multiple times, I would like to help explain to those searching for answers to why someone might feel suicidal and how you can help those who feel this way.
About three years ago was my first attempt. I was 14 and scared. Life was harsh. Years of abuse and mental illness rattled my younger years and I was becoming afraid I’d never get to experience a happy existence. I knew I wasn’t alone in this feeling but the thought of continuing on choked me. I felt used up and exhausted.
After my attempt, I remember the looks on the faces of my family members. The confusion that washed over them. I don’t think they truly realized how sick I really was. If I could go back to that time, I would have said something sooner, but at the time I couldn’t get myself to admit what was happening affected me as badly as it did.
So, to help you understand why someone might feel suicidal, I would like to explain four things to you. I hope this information can help save a life.
1. Attempting suicide was never my first choice.
I spent years in misery. I fretted for days upon days upon weeks and months about how to help myself. I had stumbled onto the idea of suicide before, but I believed I could find another way. There had to be another way for me to express what was wrong with me. It wasn’t until I experienced complete hopelessness that I felt suicide was the only way to find release from the pain I was experiencing. Some people think it came out of the blue, but it doesn’t. Suicide isn’t the first option, it’s usually the last.
2. When someone reaches out, listen.
I needed someone desperately, but I felt like when I reached out, no one would listen to what I had to say. I felt trapped in my body with all these haunting thoughts. Having someone who would have sat down with me and heard my troubles would have prevented me from feeling so alone. It’s important to take suicide seriously and all claims of wanting to die, because even though some find it funny to joke about, there are those who say it and really mean it. Be there for those who reach out, and if you can’t, guide them into the direction of someone who can.
3. Sometimes people attempt suicide to stop the debate.
It’s been three years since my first attempt, and the thought of whether I should or should not kill myself still lingers daily. One of my two suicide attempts was because I needed to stop the debate in my head. I wanted the intrusive thoughts to end, and I know I can’t be the only one who understands what it’s like to walk about constantly finding reasons to put in the “I need to die” category. This most certainly isn’t the only reason someone may try to end their life, but it was one of the reasons for me.
4. Mental illness play a big part in suicide.
I’ve been diagnosed with three disorders, borderline personality disorder (BPD), obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). It’s hard to live when your mind is constantly fighting against you. Days don’t feel like days, they feel like walking miles with my feet stuck on concrete. Had I not been dealt the unfortunate cards of mental illness, I don’t think suicide would have felt like an option to me. I would imagine many others experience this too. I was very difficult to wake up thinking, “I have a sick mind.” Please know if you suspect someone has a disorder, ask them to seek out professional help. Getting someone to see a therapist early could prevent them from getting too deep into murky waters.
There is a lot more I could explain to you about suicide, but for now, I think I have expressed all that needs to be. Suicide is serious, and should be taken seriously.
If there is one thing you can take from my article, please take away that suicide isn’t what the person initially wanted. It’s a hard and dangerous road to suicide, but it can be prevented. Please, speak up and reach out.
If you or someone you know needs help, visit our suicide prevention resources page.
If you need support right now, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255 or text “START” to 741-741.
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Unsplash photo via Remy_Loz.