I’m going to talk about something today that isn’t talked about enough, and for that reason, it can be very misunderstood. Suicidal thoughts and ideation are experienced by many people, but bringing up a conversation with someone about them is difficult. This is mainly due to the stigma attached to them, and that you will potentially be seen as attention seeking, or that they will have you detained in a mental hospital because of it. The truth is, it’s not attention seeking, because the last thing that person probably wants is your attention, but they want your help not to feel like that anymore. As for being detained, the wards are full, and people are shipped all over the country just to find an available space. Those spaces are taken by people who have or intend to act on those thoughts.
If you’ve never experienced those thoughts, or aren’t sure if you have, I’m going to tell you a little about what it is like to feel them, however this is my perspective only and doesn’t reflect this for everyone.
For me, I have had suicidal thoughts since I was around 11 years old. They have gone away sometimes, but at other times they are relentless.
My thoughts and feelings began when I was bullied at school. I was slut shamed, insulted, put down, laughed at, and made to feel like a piece of shit. What was the point in life if that’s what people think of me? I would get myself into a spiral of debt and worry about how I would ever afford to repay it, and dealing with creditors on the phone and with their letters, worrying that I would lose my home, my family – everything. So I thought about how they’d be better off if I was dead. Maybe it would wipe the slate clean. I have feelings of low self worth, I don’t think I’m doing a good job at anything, like literally anything from cleaning my house to doing my actual job. If I can’t do the job, then what is the point in me being here? It would be easier for everyone if I wasn’t. They could find someone else, someone better.
I have PTSD from previous Domestic Violence, and I often think about the hurtful things he said and did to me. I wonder if all those things he said about me are true, because he sure said them enough. I have nightmares about him to this day and think if I were to die then at least I would be free of him. I think too much, and wonder what my purpose here is? I don’t feel like I have done well in my career compared to others, I don’t feel I have much money compared to others, my health is poor, and I don’t have the family I thought I’d have. I wonder what the whole purpose of life is, for anyone, especially for someone like me who makes such a small difference to the world. I’m going to die one day, so why prolong it? I need to stop comparing, but as a society it’s something we do all too often. I know how I would do it (I won’t say how), but I don’t have a plan of action in place to carry this out. Sometimes I think about the finer points of it though, for example where I would do it, because I still have the presence of mind to think about the person who would find me, and to think about any unanswered questions people may have, and how I could answer them. Suicidal thoughts and ideation are any thoughts of being better off not here, not good enough, or the more extreme planning and wishing you were dead.
I’m able to push the thoughts aside for the most part, and I have go-to thoughts that help me through. I imagine my children’s faces crying for mummy, and me not being there for them. I can’t leave them. They’re keeping me alive. They are my life.
There is a part of me that knows that suicide is not in my near future, but somewhere inside me I have this feeling that when I die, this will be how. I think it’s just because my thoughts have been so consumed for so long now, that I don’t know how not to think like this. Hopefully with changes in medication and therapy I will feel differently, but for me, this is part of my suicidal ideation. Suicidal thoughts are nothing to be ashamed of, and you are always better off for telling someone. Whether it’s your best friend, your neighbour, your mum, your doctor or even someone at the Samaritans. Telling someone will make it feel better, and help you on the way to get help.
*******A huge thanks to our anonymous blogger this week, we know it is a difficult subject to discuss and hope this will help some of our followers. We’d like to confirm that she is receiving practical and emotional help with her thoughts and feelings. If you or someone you know are struggling with suicidal thoughts, please reach out to your GP, or in a crisis, Visit your nearest A&E. You can also contact the Samaritans on 116 123.******