WARNING: Potential trigger alert. If my honesty about this particular experience may hurt you, please do not read. Thank you.
I used to drink quite heavily, and not because I liked the taste of alcohol. Any sign (no matter how big or small) of discomfort or trigger of an anxiety attack would result in me saying, “I need a drink.”
Here’s why… I had this cycle of thinking that every bad thing that happened was bound to do so because it was something I deserved anyway. That way of thinking came with a tremendous amount of guilt. When I got drunk however, at least in the beginning, I remember feeling like I could do whatever I wanted to do and people would still love and care for me.
For a while that was true, but I realized my suicidal thoughts would intensify when I was the most intoxicated and not only is that no way to live, but that is the quickest route to death. I did whatever I could to drown memories/years of abandonment, mistakes, sexual abuse, verbal abuse, bullying, and rejection.
I can recall one instance where I was completely wasted, so much so that I decided it would be a good idea to walk from the bar I liked to frequent to my home (not a short walk). I was shouting things that I genuinely can’t remember (otherwise I would tell you) and laughing all while thinking to myself, “I cannot wait to die.”
When I got home I planned out how I was going to die and went to sleep, then woke up unable to move much less commit suicide. I also remember this one instance turning into multiple instances… and I remember placing the biggest burden you can ever put on someone which is depending on them to save your life or give meaning to it.
It’s crazy thinking about now because the very thing that was causing me such anxiety and depression, humanity, the thing that is faulty most times and unreliable others (seemingly more so as of late).. was the thing I was relying on to save me. I wanted help, love, and companionship SO badly and I did not care who provided that for me. When I believed that no one wanted to do that, that’s when I actually attempted suicide.
I felt that way 2 years ago, and now I will do whatever I can to make sure that NO ONE does. Suicide is 100% preventable and there are so many survivors out there who have the ability to initiate change by using what they have to help others.
What saved my life was therapy and the pure grace of God. I had to grow mentally and spiritually on my own (meaning without much support from family and friends which is something I do not recommend), and I now continue to grow with a community of people who are open about their mental illness/mood disorders. We all live as if we have nothing to hide and that has initiated freedom for ourselves and, hopefully, others who hear our stories. I really believe taking the time to share ourselves with others can give them hope, end stigma, and affect society overall.
You aren’t alone, survivors, nor will you ever be if you reach out for help.
Learn how to end the silence and blog about your experience with suicide here: http://msw.usc.edu/mswusc-blog/suicide-prevention-and-awareness-blog-day-kick-off/?utm_source=promoted&utm_medium=social&utm_campaign=blog
USC’s MSW Programs Blog Day.