To view part one of This World Is Not Done With You, click here.
In my last post I began to discuss the things that one does not think about when they are thinking about suicide. The first thing is that you have no idea how amazing your life will be. The second is that you don’t realize how important you are to people. And the third is that you don’t understand the pain a family feels when suicide is brought in. I cut off the post there because suicide is so complex and intricate. It is hard for me to understand what I was going through, let alone anyone else. However, I have learned a lot. Like I said in the last post, I can’t stop anyone from feeling suicidal.I can’t change minds. All I can do is offer insight from my own experiences and hope that I can save a few people from a lot of heartache.
I still think about Thursday, June 23, 2011 every single day. Which leads me to the number one thing that you don’t think about when you think about suicide.
What if you survive?
You will think about how nice it would be to not have to deal with the world anymore. You’ll consider the relief of no longer hiding how unhappy you are. You’ll try to tell yourself that everyone will be much better off. You don’t consider becoming one of the large percentage of people who survive a suicide attempt. I can not possibly explain to you how hard it is to look someone you love in the eye and tell them that you tried to kill yourself. It is painful to hear the comments about how you did it all for attention when you are just trying to recover. It is exhausting to spend night after night having flashbacks to when you attempted and the time leading up to it. It is tedious to have to constantly reassure people that you are truly doing well.
I am one of the lucky survivors. I have emotional issues to deal with and physical scars from self-injuring, but many people become permanently disabled from their attempts. It is truly a miracle not only that I am alive, but that my kidney’s are functioning. I know of someone who survived a suicide attempt but became a quadriplegic from the severity of the attempt. And to think they thought they were miserable before. A lot of people tell themselves that if they survive, they’ll just try it again. It’s not that easy.
You will be watched constantly by the people who do not want to lose you. And yes. There are people who do not want to lose you. Eventually, the thoughts will slow down or go away. But you will feel like people will always consider you a risk. You’ll be able to see in their eyes when they’re wondering if you’ll be there the next morning. You will constantly wonder if the people you love are thinking about what you did. That too will die down. What doesn’t go away so easily is the constant feeling of needing to show people that you’re doing better.
I’m not saying that you’ll always feel the need to seem totally happy. You will still have bad days. You’ll still have days where you could punch someone in the face for breathing too loud. But you will constantly want to show the people you love that you are doing okay. You will do anything to prove that you aren’t at risk anymore and you will spend nights laying awake feeling guilty for the peace of mind that you stole from people you love.
I am almost at my two year anniversary of my suicide attempt and it was only a few months ago that I finally started to feel like I could relax and stop trying to prove myself. I have done everything in my power to stay genuine with my condition since I attempted, but sometimes, when the depression would get really bad, I would find myself still trying to comfort my parents. I just wanted to reassure to them that I was going to be there the next morning if it were up to me.
When you attempt suicide, you don’t think about having to recover if you survive. I’m still recovering. I don’t have thoughts of suicide anymore. That doesn’t mean that I’m totally healed from the whole thing. I have really bad nights and I have really good nights. It’s not predictable. It’s not comfortable. It’s not easy. It’s hard to find people who will be willing to stick with you through the recovery process. I am blessed to have such supportive friends, family, and a therapist that I trust and respect.
To close, I just want my readers to understand that these are only a few of the things that you learn after you survive a suicide attempt. And no one thinks that they’ll be one of the survivors. If you are thinking about suicide, please seek help. It is serious. There are so many things that you don’t know. Life is worth living.
This World Is Not Done With You