With one in four of us estimated to have experienced or expected to experience a serious mental illness within our lifetime, it’s no wonder that the vast majority of us will have pondered “what’s the point of being alive?” at some point or another. For some, these thoughts visit fleetingly proceeding an upsetting event-for others, they develop into a devastating downward spiral of deep and prolonged despair.
When I was thirteen, on top of my already present PTSD and OCD, I developed severe clinical depression: something which clouded my sky and eradicated all hope and positivity from the world around me. It took me a long time to open up-there’s something about the black wall of the illness that obscures realistic thought processes; I saw myself as a burden, nothing more than an inconvenience to those closest to me. Surrounded by a terrible lack of support from the mental health services, I turned to Pro-Self Harm and Suicide sites; which is not something I would ever want anybody else to be exposed to-these sites are run by bad people. Not only are they in a bad place themselves, but they get a twisted kick out of encouraging other vulnerable people to do the unthinkable.
At the time, being unstable myself, I was not in the right frame of mind to dismiss these sites as “evil”.I saw their terrible emotional manipulation and could acknowledge that they were fundamentally wrong: but their promise of “we understand that you want to let go, and we’re going to help you do that” was somewhat appealing to my already suicidal mind.
I’m not going to go into great detail about what I considered doing and the finer details of exactly how; for one, I wouldn’t want to inspire anyone. And equally, it’s not relevant: this is about how I survived it, and how you can too.
Know That Life Gets Better
And it changes, constantly. In two years time, you may be the happiest that you have ever been. Tonight you could win the lottery. Tomorrow you could find the love of your life. Next week you could be lying on a beach in the Caribbean. Don’t throw away that chance card.
Think of Your Loved Ones
Like many others, I hate the misconception that suicide is somehow “selfish”-after all, its cause is often illness, whether it be visible or not. Dying from depression or any other disorder is really no more optional than dying from stroke; the sufferer does not “choose” to succumb to suicide: rather, they’re victimised by their own mental state.
However, there’s no doubt about the fact that a self-inflicted death effects family and friends in ways that will go on to haunt them for the rest of their lives.
You Don’t Want to Die
You want the pain to end. The problem with suicide is that, whilst the hurt will go, you’ll feel no relief-no comfort, no joy about this fact. You’ll be gone, and there’s no coming back from that.
Instead, you need to expand your coping capacities. Whether it be through talking, watching a movie, having a bath, eating a giant bar of Galaxy, you need to find a release. For me, relaxing has never really soothed the distress-personally, using the web to talk to other people who are going through the exact same thing as me has always been my comfort. I met my best friend, Alex (https://journeytoeuphoriasite.wordpress.com/), this way.
There are always medications
And you shouldn’t be ashamed to take them. If you had diabetes, you’d seek medical treatment, and having a potential chemical imbalance should be treated no less significantly. If one doesn’t work, try another; go back to the doctor and tweak the dose. Although not for everyone, headmeds can be life-saving.
You Are Not Alone
There are over 7 billion people on this planet; statistically, it’s almost guaranteed that a fair amount of people have felt the same way as you have. They’ve felt the same fears, the same angst and the same anguish-most likely, they’ll have lived to tell the tale. In this day and age, it’s easier than ever to find them.
There’s Someone on Earth That Cares About You
Very much. If not at home, then over the Internet. Never hesitate to reach out for help-after all, it might just save your life.
Resources-Where to Get Help
I’m always here if you need me, and here’s a small list of online support groups and helplines.
Phone: 116 123 (24 hours)
Phone: 08444 775 774 (Mon-Fri, 9.30am-5.30pm)
Mental Health Foundation
For anxiety and OCD sufferers.
Phone: 0844 967 4848 (daily, 10am-10pm)
Phone: 0845 390 6232 (Mon-Fri, 9.30am-5pm)
Phone: Parents’ helpline 0808 802 5544 (Mon-Fri, 9.30am-4pm)
Phone: 0808 802 9999 (daily, 12-2.30pm, 7-9.30pm)