A Personal Post About Suicide

by | Jan 2, 2018 | 0 comments

I was going to kickstart this new adventure of actually blogging with a post about smoothies. I’m sure those posts will come. So will posts about television shows or movies I watch or possibly some (hopefully) humorous comments on life in general.

But news of another suicide locally and a video shared by the Gallia County Sheriff’s Office changed all that. The reality is, two months ago I would not have put this post out. I would have second-guessed myself. I would have probably written this post, but never shared it. But I made a promise to myself two months ago when I quit my job to pursue a full-time career as a writer. That was to write. No more fear. Whether I was writing in my full-time gig, creative writing or writing on this blog, if I felt compelled to write I was going to jump in with both feet and do it.

And with this, I feel more than compelled. I feel called on and maybe there is a reason. If this helps just one person who is struggling with thoughts of suicide or who feels worthless get help, then for me it’s worth it.

So here it goes.

Over 20 years ago, I contemplated suicide. Honestly, I did more than contemplate it. I knew exactly how I was going to do it and, had it not been for some extremely observant friends, I have no doubt in my mind I would not be here today.

I think it’s important to share because it really was not a planned event in my life. It was a split-second decision, drowned in alcohol and low self-esteem, a normally harmless side remark and the sudden desire to just end it all.

Looking back now, it’s easy for me to look at that time in my life and think my younger self an idiot for feeling that way. I had friends. I was in college and living on my own. I had a family who loved me. But that younger version of myself saw things differently. In that moment, none of that mattered. None of it was even thought about. Well, it was thought about, but not in the way I can see it now.

Having managed to free myself from an abusive relationship not long before, my self-esteem was non-existent at that time. He had made sure of that. And if I am being completely honest with myself, I had self-esteem issues long before I was ever subjected to abuse at the hands of someone I loved and trusted. As far as the family that loved me—and they did and still do love me—all I focused on was how I had disappointed them with the decisions I had made in my life to that point and the struggles I had put them through. Most days, I dealt with it all, put my head down and plowed forward to my next goal.

But that night, something changed. That night, I must not have been in a good place and that night, I went to a party anyway and had a few drinks. Then a guy sat next to me, put his arm around me and asked me to pretend to be his girlfriend so another girl would stop bothering him.

And that was it.

Just that comment.

Completely harmless, really. But in my head, all I could focus on was that I was only good enough to pretend to be his girlfriend, not actually be his girlfriend.

Silly. Right? It’s okay to say it. The adult me agrees. Because it is silly to contemplate killing yourself over something like that.

But that younger version of me didn’t think it was silly. And it obviously was not the actual reason. It was just the catalyst. The icing on the cake, so to speak.

I remember standing up. I remember walking out of that party. I remember walking to my apartment. I remember knowing what knife I was going to use. I remember knowing how I was going to do it. I remember not caring that it was going to hurt. I remember thinking I was numb enough I probably wouldn’t feel it anyway. I remember my friends. I don’t remember how they got there. I don’t remember when they followed me. But I remember them refusing to leave and staying right there until the next morning. And I remember the very direct discussions, led by those friends, that took place the next day.

Had it not been for those friends, I have no doubt I would have killed myself that night. No doubt. Because the thought of what it would do to my loved ones just wasn’t there in that moment. It just wasn’t there. I just wanted the pain to end. And the next morning, the guilt over what I had almost done to them was overwhelming.

I sought help after that. As it turned out, a close friend—one with a huge heart, an ear to listen, and words that built me back up—was all I needed. For others, that might not work. For others, they might need more.

The thought of suicide hasn’t crossed my mind since.

Don’t get me wrong. I’ve had bad times that seem like they will never end. But I know, for every storm, there is a rainbow coming. Sometimes you must wait it out. And sometimes you must march right out into it and make your way through it. But there are clear skies again. I also know another storm will come and I’ll do it all over again because that is just life.

And most of all, I learned to be happy with who I am, just as I am. To not let other’s thoughts and judgments of me define my actions. To take the mistakes I made in my life and turn them into lessons.

All lessons I would have never learned had that night gone differently.

So, if this post makes it to you and you have reached a point in your life where you don’t feel worthy or you feel you have disappointed the ones you love, please seek help. If you find yourself making side comments or thoughts go through your mind about how it would just be easier to let it all end, please seek help. Even if the thoughts of your family are keeping you from doing it right now, seek help.

Visit the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline website, where you can chat with someone. Call (800) 273-8255. Text 741741 to text a crisis counselor. Talk to a trusted friend. Seek therapy. Whatever you have to do, do it.


You can also find a lot of great information on the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline website about warning signs and how to help a friend or family member who is struggling.