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To the Person Contemplating Suicide Right Now

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My dearest,

I don’t know you. I’ve never met you and I probably never will. But let me say this to you: I love you. I accept you as you are. I understand.

I understand because, for long periods of time in my life, I’ve contemplated the same thing. I’ve been torn between knowing that I will hurt the people who love me the most and thinking they’ll be better off without me. One voice in my head screams for an end of the emotional torment and another whispers at me to just hold on.

I’m so, so sorry you’re in pain. I’ve heard the demons in my head, too. I’ve heard them say I’m not good enough. I’ve heard them say I’m not worth it. I’ve heard them say I’m not worth life.

People have tried to help. People have pointed out how good our lives are. People have said there’s no reason for us to feel this way — that these thoughts are just thoughts. Let me refute them: your feelings are valid. Your thoughts are not silly. What you’re going through right now is horrible. Even I can’t completely imagine what you are going through.

You might have been told you have depression — you might not have. You might have abstract thoughts about the possibility, you might have made concrete plans. You might have been thinking about it for a long time or a thought might have crossed your mind a few moments ago. You might have attempted suicide before, you might never have entertained the notion. You might be absolutely determined, you might not even care whether you lived or not.

Whatever your situation right now, I’m afraid the only thing I can tell you is something a doctor said to me once. “There is no magic wand someone can wave or a set of words someone can say to you that will make you feel better.” I can’t propose a solution. All I can tell you to do is wait.

I know it’s impossible to see from where you’re standing. But your feelings will change. I know it seems like there is no end to the torment. That’s part of the lie. That’s part of the lethal deception that those demons feed you. That’s part of the blanket that smothers away hope. But hope is still there, even though it’s out of sight. It might take a long time. You and I don’t know when the day will come when you catch sight of that hope again. But that day is coming — I promise.

I wish I could gather you in my arms and just hold you. You’re still here. You’re still holding on. It’s a battle just to get to the end of each day. It’s hard —I acknowledge that. I cannot begin to imagine the strength and determination it takes.

Remember: you are loved. You are immeasurably valuable. You are worthy of life.

All my love to you.

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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Thinkstock photo via Archv.

Originally published: June 13, 2017
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