Yes I have been suicidal and yes I have tried to end my life… a couple of times.
I guess there have been a few times in my life where everything has overwhelmed me so much… to the point beyond rational thinking.
That would be the moment that the idea begins… the idea that maybe the pain and confusion can end, maybe I don’t have to be here anymore.
A long time ago…..
I was alone, my partner had abandoned me with my first child and I was living with barely enough money to make ends meet.
I was taking care of many other members of my family at the time as well and I had no support. I was the support.
I had no idea of the way forward and it all seemed so hopeless.
So I made a terrible decision that I regret and I would take it back if I could…
Thoughts of who will miss me anyway cross my mind briefly (yes there’s always people that will miss me, in every possible journey, every aspect of my life so far, always).
I mean once the choice is made its made in concrete and there is just no turning back from that point… is there?
One time when I felt my life had turned to shit and there could never be any possible positive outcomes no matter which direction I made a move in… in the early hours of the morning around 3 or 4 am I decided to hell with it all and fuck everyone I am out, I am out for good and I am leaving this shit hole of a life forever.
Did I mean it though? I don’t think so or I wouldn’t still be here right? I think at that moment it was all I felt I had in terms of choices and I chose poorly.
I had a box of razor-blades, seriously nasty and as sharp as a barber shop razor.
Add some alcohol to that as well, no irrational life or death decision was ever made without the booze or drugs…
It just made it feel easier to do it. I didn’t care as much because I was drunk and time stood still for me in that moment, sort of like an all or nothing really.
In that moment I had to make a choice, and I chose to take that razor blade and run it across my arm over and over and over again. I moved positions and ran it back and forth and I pushed down with it into my skin as hard as I could.
I did not do a vertical cut up my arm from my elbow to wrist. I didn’t even do a horizontal cut across my wrists (although I had made earlier teenage half-hearted attempts at this), instead I cut and shredded the top half of my arm. Then I lay back and let it bleed out all over my bed.
After half an hour, I think I realised that I wasn’t dying, my blood had clotted nicely and the wounds were not pumping out copious amounts of blood like I had imagined.
I attempted a re-cut of the bloody mess of my arm to get things flowing again.
Did it hurt? Hell yes it hurt, it hurt so much as I made each incision, but only as I cut – which I did very quickly, otherwise it was a dull continuous ache.
Another half hour passes, and by this point I am feeling weak but who knows that could be the alcohol. I take a look at the mess, I can never forget this and I still feel queasy at the thought, near where my arm has been laying it looks as if someone has made a lovely wobbly jelly and then just dumped it onto my bed. That was the pile of my congealed blood next to me and all over my pillow too.
I felt scared, I began to think that I had made a horrible mistake… really stupid this time.
At this time in my life I was flatting with a relative… I had to call out to her because I wasn’t even sure if I could get up and walk, I was afraid to try. Sobriety had began to kick in as did the horrid realisation of what I have done. What I have done to myself.
This is fucking terrible. How can I tell her. Oh My God.
I started by calling out her name and saying I have done something stupid and I need some help. Of course she came right away, she was sickened, I could tell by her face and I was too so I understood how she felt.
She was much younger than me and never should have had to go through dealing with that sort of drama. She was very diplomatic about it all, called an ambulance for me, told other relatives… honestly, the aftermath is a hazy memory for me now.
I was taken to hospital, I do remember having my arm inspected by medical professionals. I remember looking down at my mess of an arm and asking what that yellow stuff is in there… the medic told me it was fatty tissue inside my arm…. oh god, revolting. Just revolting.
They put me out and I woke up in a hospital gown with my arm all bandaged up. I woke as my gurney was being pushed back to my room… we were going past a lot of relatives, some that I hadn’t seen for a long long time.
I went home the next day. Family members came to visit, bring me flowers, have an awkward chat but no-one mentions the elephant in the room, my family is like that… and I hate it.
It took me a long time to get past feeling that way. Feeling so desperate that I would rather die than stay here living in depression and hopelessness.
I worked through it, and its never easy coping with anxiety and depression, its hard work and it takes time. It like a full rebuild, total system reboot.
From that experience I have learnt not to be so hard on myself. I am only one person after all. I am not perfect, and neither is any one else.
Walk a day in my shoes… a lifetime.
This is the first time I have ever written about my attempt at suicide.
I am in a much better place now, but it still haunts me.
I have full use of my arm, a lucky shot. There are scars… very obvious deep scars all over the top half of my arm that I have to live with.
Occasionally people notice the scars and ask me how I got them, I am so embarrassed, I don’t think I could ever tell anyone the truth so I say I was in an accident and I keep it vague…
Next time someone asks… I wonder if I did tell the truth? How would that go down in conversation?