Mental illness and the mental health crises in the United States are reaching epidemic levels, but there are still stigmas and unfounded opinions that can halt progression – and getting people the help they need. If you’ve got someone in your life you’re worried about, or think you should be worried about – or if you’re worried about yourself – read through these 15 honest confessions.
You might realize that you, too, have something worth living for.
#15. Even if she has no idea.
“I tried to commit suicide this time roughly 2 years ago. I had taken all the pills in the vicinity and was ready to nap when I had a sudden anxiety thought of ‘if I die, I can’t take my niece to Disney on Ice!’ To this day she’s still my little saviour, even if she has no idea.”
#14. It might get better.
“I struggle with this at times. What I do is, I tell myself that I can always commit suicide later. I tell myself to just keep trying and see what happens. It might get better. (Spoiler: it always does.) But if it doesn’t, then I can kill myself, knowing I gave it my best try.
It’s still difficult to get through, yes. But realizing that I have a choice, that the choice is mine, to do it or not, and I’m making an active choice to stay alive and see what happens, helps a lot.”
#13. It’s slow but it’s good.
“I had May 19th as my suicide day. The long weekend. Always a lonely time for me. On the Monday leading up to that Saturday, a friend dropped by and found me in a bit of a state. Sitting on the floor in my ginch crying and surrounded by letters to people. He knows that I’ve always struggled with depression and suicidal thoughts. When he left, he called my Ma who came over. She called the cops who took me in to a secure psychiatric hospital. I stayed for a week and was inundated with therapists and Drs. Finally got a proper diagnosis and actually started taking meds. When I got out I vowed to never go back to who I’ve always been. I see a therapist often, have opened up to friends, family and my GP. It’s slow but it’s good. I wish you the best.”
#12. The painful choice.
“My husband saved my life. He had me involuntarily admitted to the hospital. I spent 9 days there and underwent treatment. I am now on medication for depression, anxiety and sleep. I also see a psychiatrist. This may not be for everyone but it helped me tremendously. If not for him and the painful choice he had to make, I would not be here.”
#11. Comfortable with living.
“I read an article that explored people who didn’t become successful until their 40s. It made me think that my life might still have some purpose. I was 22 then. I never tried killing myself again. I’d previously tried a couple of times.
It will sound cliche, but each time I feel like ending it I think of all the things I wouldn’t have done, seen, etc if I’d died at 22.
As someone else said, suicidal people never stop being suicidal. I’ve just become comfortable with living.”
#10. Meditation and Buddhism.
“Buddhism saved my life – well first it was drugs – but then it became meditation and Buddhism.”
“I started being nicer to myself. It feels fake and dumb at first. “Its okay I didnt do anything today. My soul is hurting. It’s okay to rest when you’re hurting.” Stuff like that. Then gently get yourself to do things. “Okay baby. Let’s brush our teeth. Dont have the energy? That’s okay. Just put your leg outside the bed. Okay. Can we stand up? Just for a second. Then we can go back to sleep if we want.” 9 times out of 10, I would end up doing the hard thing I didnt think I had enough energy to do. It’s all about baby steps and momentum.
The more I did, the better I felt. It’s really fucking hard. Especially in the beginning. But I went from being a NEET to travelling to the other side of the country and working/living in a National Park and meeting lots of cool people on the way. We’re more capable than we think we are.”
#8. Hurting her too.
“I suffer from depression and attempted suicide when I was 15. Stayed in a mental hospital for a week. Depression started back up again a year ago when I first started college and I started giving up on life. Got home for thanksgiving break and almost cried when i saw my dog. All she did was follow me around and wanted to sleep in my bed. Could never hurt myself because i’ll end up up hurting her too.”
#7. Talk to people.
“The suicide attempt of a good friend. I was close, real close. Then she tried to kill herself and I felt the gravity of the entire situation. All of us were devastated and she still hasn’t physically recovered from everything. She wasn’t able to dance ever since, which was somethibg she loved doing but… she got better. And then I knew I couldn’t. I couldn’t hurt the people around me so much and there is sometjing worth living. It got a lot worse first, bit I’m slowly getting better.
Honestly, just talk to people. They love you, they care for you, they don’t want to lose you. Cut out the one’s that are toxic and find yourself a second family. You wouldn’t want to hurt them, would you? Then don’t. Live for yourself, live for them. It will always get a lot worse before it gets better, but at a certain point, it’ll be worth it.”
#6. Be honest and easy.
“My dumbass couldn’t position the gun correctly and that is how I survived.
Loads of therapy helped me not try a second time.
Removing, getting rid off, and burning all toxic people in your life.
Being honest and easy with yourself.
Speaking out with close friends about your issues.”
#5. My brother called.
“My brother called me while I was driving around, looking for a place to park and shoot myself. He called me because he missed me and wanted to hang out that night. I went over to his place and basically broke down. Up until that moment, he didnt know about the depression and suicidal thoughts I’ve been having. Ever since I’ve been accepting his help, things have gotten a whole bunch easier. He helped me confront some unresolved things that I could not have done myself. Went a long way.”
#4. Come down and play.
“My 6 year old niece yelled upstairs to me to come down and play, while I had my gun in my mouth.
Kick anyone with a toxic or negative attitude out of your life. Then put people who truly love and appreciate you in that place.”
#3. Man’s best friend.
“I got a dog.”
#2. Professional help.
“I suffered from depression for many years before I got help. In high school it was just thoughts of, “what would really happen if I let my car drift into the other lane or if I drove into that tree?” but without any real plan or intent to take action. I kept on going, just journaling a lot and hiding my pain. I honestly didn’t understand that I was depressed. I just thought I was weak and needed to toughen up.
Then I went to college and in some ways it got better. I escaped my old environment and started over. However, the thing is, I couldn’t run away from my depression forever. It then got so much worse. I started actively planning how I wanted to kill myself, how to tell my family (note, not beforehand), and where to do it. The things that held me back: the pain I knew I would cause my family and knowing someone would have to find my body. I didn’t want to do that to my roommate (or a stranger) but also wanted to be comfortable. At this point it still never really crossed my mind that I should get help. Most people were entirely oblivious to what was going on inside and the couple people who did know I was unhappy had no clue as to the extent. I never told a single person about my suicidal thoughts. The thing was, I wanted to erase myself without impacting anyone at all. I wasn’t trying to get attention – far from it.
By the beginning of my senior year in college I would get physically ill leading up to having to head back to school. I had my first panic attack and finally went to go get help. Once I could breathe again, I went to my school’s counseling office and asked for an emergency appointment. That day was the day that broke me and made me see that I needed help. Once it wasn’t “just my brain,” (the panic attack) I realized that I wasn’t just weak, but that my body was failing me.
Day one, the day I broke down, started me spiraling. It was like something physically cracked. I couldn’t keep my emotions bottled up anymore. I sobbed and sobbed like never before. Prior to that day, none of my peers had seen me cry. I’ll never forget the concerned looks and the one gentleman who told me that I looked terrible. ???? I lost my appetite and had a few saltines over the course of the next week. I really only ate because my therapist insisted I eat something. I stopped getting out of bed entirely unless it was to go to counseling.
The worst part of the experience was probably having to tell my parents. My therapist wanted me to start taking antidepressants and I knew that if I used my dad’s insurance, he might be informed. I called my parents and told them the short story. At first they were angry – I had hidden this part of my life from them (long story as to why I felt that I couldn’t talk to them) and they took it as me blaming them for the situation. In the end, it ended up being very positive. My parents became a lot kinder to me and I slowly regained some control over my life.
I still ended up having another panic attack, almost failed my senior year (shout out to the wonderful professors who worked with me to help me scrape out that year), and didn’t walk away happily ever after. However, I did talk out a lot of my past pain and realize things about myself.
My therapist said that, “depression is anger turned inwards.” At first I thought that was total garbage. I wasn’t angry. I was sad. And hurt. And lonely. And scared. Then I thought about it and she was at least a little right. I was angry. I was angry that I had lived so long with so much pain. I was angry that no one had helped me. I realized that it was unreasonable, but I still felt betrayed. I was angry that out of everyone I knew, and everyone who had taught me, no one saw what was going on or taught me about depression and what signs to look for. I thought I was just too weak and not that my brain chemistry was out of balance.
Today I am honestly happy. I’m not claiming things are perfect or that I haven’t had down times. In the end though, I no longer think of ending my life and I smile sincerely. If you are struggling, my advice is to talk to someone. At first I managed with just journaling. It was a way to stop from drowning in my feelings. However, I really only got better when I had a proper sounding board, one who could ask me the right questions and validate my feelings. That and get me on antidepressants. Part of my issue was definitely that my brain chemistry was not right. If you are thinking suicide, find a counselor. If it doesn’t help, try a different one. Feel free to message me if you want. Good luck. You can get through it.”
#1. What tomorrow brings.
“Oh I’ve tried. Numerous times. Never works though. I stopped one day when I had a thought. Why not see what happens next? Nothing’s matters any ways so why not see what tomorrow brings?
I don’t really have any advice because I still consider it multiple times a day, every day. Just, talk to someone. Any one. There are people who will find you fascinating if you’d only talk to them.”