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The One Person Who Didn’t Walk Past Me When I Was Contemplating Suicide

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In the few days running up to this act of kindness, I’d been lower than low. I was currently in a psychiatric hospital, my fourth admission this year. I just couldn’t handle the intense emotions that come with borderline personality disorder (BPD). I’d been feeling so overwhelmingly sad. No matter how many people told me, “It’ll get better,” I just couldn’t see any other way out.

So when I asked a support worker if I could go out for a walk, I had no intention of coming back. It was 8:15 by the time I got to where I was going to end my life. All the way there, I had felt this calmness wash over me. I felt at peace knowing that I wouldn’t have to deal with having BPD anymore.

I sat on a wall overlooking a river for what felt like an eternity. As I made my way closer to the edge, I became scared. Scared that I was going to survive. I cried until I felt like there were no more tears left in me. Not one person stopped to ask if I was OK, until one young man came along.

“Are you OK?”

I was scared, tired, suicidal and shocked. Why had he stopped to talk to me? Everyone else had just walked past me without a care in the world. He stood and talked to me for more than half an hour about everything. He made me feel calm and at ease.

I asked him why he had stopped to talk to me.

His reply was, “I know nothing about mental illness, but I couldn’t have it on my conscious knowing I’d walked past someone who wanted to take their own life.”

This man saved my life. Before he came along, I was edging closer and closer to the edge of that wall, and I was gathering the courage to jump. I often think about that man and how if he hadn’t stopped, I might not be here right now.

If you or someone you know needs help, visit our suicide prevention resources page.

If you need support right now, call the Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255. You can reach the Crisis Text Line by texting “START” to 741-741.

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Image via Thinkstock.

Originally published: December 21, 2016
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