Before I start this post, I want to issue a “Trigger Warning”. This post is about a suicide attempt. This is your chance to stop reading if you feel this will trigger you.
I’ve mentioned that I suffer from Anxiety and Depression in another post. And my story has really not been shared because I never felt the need to share it. I have a friend who has shared some of her trials with her children who have attempted suicide. And she has started doing #starttalkingtuesday posts to end the silence and stigma about Mental Health and Mental Illnesses. When she first started doing these posts I think about a year ago, I felt inclined to share my story. Yet, here we are a year later and I’m struggling to write this post.
My story isn’t just about me. There are more people involved. My family for one, and an ex-boyfriend and his mom. I’m not going to say names because my purpose here isn’t to name blame or point fingers. I realize my actions were just that. My actions. I am also sparing details, because my family will probably read this, and some things are meant to be private.
When I was first diagnosed, it was a circus. The Physician’s Assistant that diagnosed me, changed my diagnosis and my medicine a few times in just a few months span. I had gone in for ADD medication to help me in college, and came out with the Diagnosis of Bipolar Disorder and antidepressants. The next month I went in and it was no longer Bipolar Disorder but now Depression. Enter adjustment of medication. I’m not sure how much this messed me up, but I’m sure it didn’t help. After not getting a solid diagnosis from the PA, my parents decided to take me to a new Doctor, one that studied mental health. The final diagnosis: Mood Imbalance. Basically when I’m happy, I’m super happy. But when I’m sad, I’m really sad. I got new medications and was starting to get better.
While all the misdiagnoses and medication stuff was going on, I was dating a lot of guys. Not all at the same time. Just a lot of dates. I have always had problems making and keeping friends which I am almost certain stems from my bullying experience. (You can read about that here) During High School I wasn’t ever really interested in boys. I had a few friends that I hung out with and that was enough for me. I went to a few dances with guys but nothing serious. Of course I had crushes…who didn’t. But after High School is when I really went boy crazy. And for the first time in my life they were giving me attention.
I had been dating one guy and we broke it off for some reason, it’s a little hazy, anyways I started dating other guys and the first guy wanted to come back around. One night we met up and hung out and made out. He told me that we would be back together, everything would be great again. I was going to go pick him up to hang up the next day.
The next day I went to his house to pick him up. I didn’t want to go to the door because I wasn’t ready to face his family again. So I waited in the car for him and text him I was there. To my surprise when the car door opened it was his mom. She got in the car and started calling me names whore and slut are the ones I can remember. She told me what a bad influence I was on her son and that she didn’t want me around him. She got out and I looked at my phone…a text from him saying sorry he just couldn’t do it. Tears started flowing as I drove off. So bad I had to pull over at one point. I can’t remember where I pulled off, but I remember a car pulling up next to me and a man rolling down his window to ask if I was ok. I told him I was and kept driving. When I got home no one was there. I was alone. I was so angry and sad. Another text. I can’t be with you, I don’t think we should talk anymore either. I felt so used. I felt like scum. Maybe I was all those words his mom called me. I text back. Don’t worry you’ll never hear from me again. I went to the medicine cabinet and I pulled out my meds and a few others. I dumped some on to the counter and started taking them. I can’t remember how many I took, or what I took.
I remember immediately walking to the phone to call 911. However when I picked it up there was a familiar voice on the line…his mom. She sounded panicked and asked me not to do anything. I told her I already had. She told me to call 911. I hung up and dialed. I can’t remember what I told the 911 operator. But I remember feeling so stupid. My dad was on the volunteer Fire Department and I knew most of the Firefighters. The ones now coming into my house. I felt so ashamed. The time they were at my house was a blur. I remember being put on the stretcher to go to the hospital. I remember seeing him and his dad running over. They didn’t let him in the ambulance thank goodness. I was given activated charcoal and kept being told “stay with us” “stay awake”. I was so tired but I fought it.
Another embarrassing moment was my nurse was one of the ones I worked with at a Nursing Home…I knew him.
They were getting me all set up in the room and in he walks. I was so uncomfortable and couldn’t even look at him. The nurse could sense it and asked me if I wanted him out of the room. I couldn’t speak and just shook my head. He kept telling me how it was all going to be better and we would be together. I couldn’t. I knew I could never ever be with him again.
The part that broke my heart…to this day still breaks my heart. Seeing my mom come around the corner with tears in her eyes and a look of panic on her face. I did that. I put those tears in her eyes and panic on her face. I began to cry as she came in the room.
The next while is a blur and before I knew it I was discharged. I was walking out to the car with my mom. He walked out with us to. My mom offered a ride but he said he would take the bus. I was relieved.
The days and weeks that followed were horrible. Medicine was locked up, I wasn’t trusted. But could I blame them? I had just put them through the ringer and back. I remember we went out to dinner one night and walking in my dad asked to hold my hand, and he told me how much he loved me and wanted me here.
Writing this has been the most emotional and heart wrenching thing I have done. Remembering all the details was especially hard. I’ve tucked them in for so long. Because it’s not a pleasant thing to remember. But I can say now that this September will be 10 years since I attempted. And it was my only attempt. And I am beyond proud of that. No my life hasn’t been all cupcakes and rainbows since then. I’ve had some pretty hard times. And medication is always going to be there. I literally can not live without it. It is my lifeline.
Coming to these terms in a world that
doesn’t won’t talk about Mental Health and Mental Illness was hard. It’s not the norm. And if you tell someone your on medication for depression or whatever they don’t get it. They think it’s made up. Or all in your head. I’m here to tell you it’s not. It’s as real as I am alive. You wouldn’t tell someone with cancer that “it’s all in their head, get over it” would you? Absolutely not. So why is it ok to tell some one with Depression or any other Mental Illness? You shouldn’t.
If you are having problems with depression or balancing your moods. Talk to someone! Talk to your parents, a Doctor, a Therapist or even me. I am always willing to talk. Get the help you need and deserve. You need to be here. The world needs YOU! Please don’t be ashamed to tell your story. It needs to be told. End the silence and start the discussion.