Suicide, the dark place….a taboo subject.
Just lying in bed and I suddenly thought of my house exploding around me, sensing a big explosion; feeling my heart suddenly rush and flutter at the thought of it as well as a weird sickly, heavy feeling at the pit of my stomach. I could feel the pulse heavy in my throat……and that’s before I went to sleep….when will it end…..when can I go to bed and not worry about what is to come….I’m just so tired of it all….
That last sentence is something that regularly runs through my mind. At times there is nothing I want more than to shut myself in my big white treasure chest and forget this horrible world exists the way it does for me right now. When I think I’m at my lowest I try to surround myself with people I love, people who make me want to fight the hardest I’ve ever fought in my life. Sadly though not everyone has this anchor to keep them afloat.
Therefore to try to help, I would like to attempt to highlight some warning signs you could look out for. The ones I mention here may not be extant and some are more obvious than others. If you spot any of these then you may be able to help and be an anchor for someone else. If they talk about suicide in any way or say something like ‘I’m better off dead’, if they are hoarding an unusually large amount of pills, feeling like there is little point in doing anything; like they’ve lost hope. I still have a feeling of helplessness and on low days I don’t see much of a future for myself. Any feelings of worthlessness or self destructive behaviour completely out of character, especially excessive alcohol or drug taking. This is done to compensate or try to forget what is really going on; an attempt to beat the demons scraping at their brains.
If you recognise any of this then don’t be afraid of talking to your loved ones or colleagues about it. Hiding from it or not mentioning the ‘taboo subject’ will not help it go away. I have been open and told my family and my counsellor how low I have reached having considered ending my life. I have even thought of ways I could do it to make it look like an accident. One of the regular ideas was to have some vegetables out on a chopping board, chop up a few carrots with a large knife, have some water on the floor, make it look like I slipped with the knife upright in my hand and have it stuck in my neck as if I had slammed onto it during the fall. Not a nice thought I know but that is the reality of my despair. I also often wonder how long it would be before someone found me….
The best thing to do if you suspect someone you know may be in this place is to talk about it and open up about your feelings. Don’t think that if they are talking about ending their lives that they won’t actually do it. I’ve heard it said on many occasions and a familiar comment from my time in the NHS was ‘it’s a cry for help’. However, trust me when I say I have been to enough call outs to know this is a fallacy. Most of the time those who attempt or complete a suicide don’t want to give up and die, they just see no other way of killing off those demons to end the pain. Especially those who seek help but are treated like a leper, or they are on yet another waiting list. Whoever said this suicide mallarky was easy obviously hasn’t been in that dark place. It takes guts but so does deciding to stick with it. I’m stubborn and won’t give in to it. It won’t stop me having these feelings but the way I see it, as long as I keep talking about it I’m fighting it.
The other night I had a chat with a friend on Facebook messenger and a dear friend Lexi, who I have spoken about on previous posts, came into the conversation. Sadly it was too late for anyone to help her. The warning signs where there but unless you know them it’s difficult to help. Unfortunately Lexi was signed off sick and then it was too late. Such a sad end to such a beautiful lady.
Everyone has heard, and potentially said themselves, that those who attempt or complete suicide are selfish. Having been close to it myself I have to disagree. There is just absolutely no other way out for them. When you reach the dark place it is just that, really really dark. You can’t see anything else other than that final task in front of you. By this stage you’ve lost all emotion for anything except fear and they see no other way….
That could have been me but thankfully I have been blessed to have sighted my anchor in time to save me. In the depths of my darkness I saw the light shining on the ones left behind. I see the very thing I want to escape from being transferred to them. The way I see it I then haven’t beaten the demons, yes it’s an escape for me but those I love have to live with what I have done. Not only that but they would also potentially be hung by guilt thinking they hadn’t done enough or they hadn’t spotted a problem in time. There is no way I would want my enemies (if I have any) never mind my loved ones, to inherit the demons I have to live with. The only way to beat this is to drag myself through by my fingernails if that’s what it takes….