Today is World Suicide Prevention Day.
I am someone who has attempted suicide, I am someone who is fighting every day to stay alive.
At the moment I decided I didn’t want to be here anymore I wasn’t being selfish, I genuinely thought the world and the people I love would be better off without me.
I was in so much pain, my heart felt like it had broken, I couldn’t cope with the weight of my emotions, my depression, my anxiety anymore. I just wanted to be free from that.
When you call someone who has attempted suicide selfish or attention seeking you miss the point entirely.
Mental illness causes pain and terror, just like physical illness can, and has no cure. Yes you can manage your condition but you’ll never be entirely free from it.
Walking through the Tube station I spotted posters telling people to speak out if they’re having suicidal thoughts but that’s easier said than done.
I’ve been told to ‘walk it off’ after an anxiety attack that left me unable to breathe or stop shaking. I’ve been told to stop being so dramatic, to do some exercise, to eat healthier, to just relax.
You don’t say anything after a while, you get tired of dealing with people’s responses, with the unhelpful things they say. You’re already dealing with the voices of disappointment and self-loathing that sound just like yours, you don’t need to hear theirs.
For the time being I’m still here – but I’m not predicting anything. I know that this darkness swirls inside me, kept just at bay by meds and support. I cannot guarantee that it won’t ever reach up and drag me with it. But for now I’m alive.
If you feel like you can’t cope anymore, please know you’re not alone, there are others who feel the same. There is help, if you feel able to ask for it, please do.
#stayalive is one of the hashtags related to World Suicide Prevention Day and if you want to share your story – please use it so we can support others in their journey and let them know they’re not alone.