(Originally published 10 Sep 2013)
It's been a little while since I've wrote anything on here, but today being World Suicide Prevention Day it seemed like an appropriate opportunity to talk a little about my experiences. I've tried it twice; suicide....not writing. If I'm honest I'd say one attempt was absolutely serious and the other, well, maybe not so much but I don't say that to make it any less genuine. To say the first was a 'spur of the moment' decision robs it of the gravitas such an action deserves, but that's what it was. The cliche is to say that 'something snapped' in my head, but it's true. I held a photo of my family and waited for the end that never came. My wife found me - what a horrendous thing that must have been for her - and called an ambulance. Thank you for that and, even though I've said it a million times, I'm sorry.
The second attempt was planned. I collected all the pills I could get my hands on. I stopped taking my meds so I could have more of them. I had a bottle of Vodka, plastic tie-wraps to go around my neck and a need to help my family become unburdened by not having me around. Of course I knew the pain it would cause them, but that was nothing compared to the relief it would mean not having me around. Talk about mixed up. My family found my kit before I could get to use it and took steps to prevent a reoccurrence, unbeknownst to me. When I found myself in a position to try again, I was found by those who love me. Thank you.
Neither attempts were the 'cry for help' often associated with suicide. I absolutely wanted to die both times, no question about it, I just couldn't cope and my head was ready to explode. When the present looks as black as night, the future doesn't even register as a possibility, let alone a necessity. It never ceases to amaze me that when you read stories about suicides in the paper or online, that people always tend to project their own sense of normality onto it. They are often called 'cowards' or that it's an' easy way out'. How wrong can you be. They talk as if those caught up in the maelstrom of those heightened emotions are acting rationally. They aren't. They are seriously ill. Patience, understanding and help is all they need, not snide comments and judgement.
My thoughts go out to the families of those affected by it. Remember, if you're feeling like there is no hope, talk to someone, everyone will be pleased you did. The UK Samaritans number is 08457 90 90 90.