My life

Lurching from one disaster to another...just a suburban princess trying to get by!

Wednesday, 13 June 2012


Warning: This post contains details regarding mental health and suicide. 
If you are unable to cope with these concepts or would rather not proceed then please don't read on.

Part 4 of my series on depression & suicide.  Please find Part 1 , Part 2 & Part 3 via these links.

I will admit it. I just didn't understand people who either comitted or even attempted suicide. 

I understood depression well enough, I have suffered it on and off for years.

My automatic thought when learning of someone's suicide was that they were so selfish, nothing was bad enough to justify the mess and pain left behind.  To give up on life, on family & friends, on God was the ultimate act of selfishness.

Then something changed.  My disease morphed into a savage, evil, all-consuming beast.  My depression turned into one so severe that I truly believed that suicide was the ONLY way out.  Thought didn't come into it.  I just wanted to end the pain, the blackness, to stop feeling.

Winston Churchill was right when he coined the name "The Black Dog" to describe his depression.  If it were a real dog you would euthanise it, trust me!

The problem is that it isn't the sufferer who is selfish, it is the disease.  Something I have learnt the hard way.

This bout of depression has been my worst ever, in the past, a month or two, a couple of courses of medication and I was OK.  This is different, has been going on for over 12 months if I am completely honest.  I have been treated since September last year, and this year despite medication, regular GP visits and councelling it spiralled out of control.

This is my second bout of suicidal ideation this year, and by far the worst.  Last time (February), more meds and a change of scene seemed to make a difference.  Afterwards I seemed to be better...until I decided to kill myself.

I have now been in hospital for over a month, am on my third lot of meds, plus anti-anxiety medication and medication to help me sleep, plus pain medication to overcome the effects of the others.  I do not sleep, and whilst I am not suicidal, I'm not particularly interested either way if I live or die.  I am able to say that whilst here in hospital I am safe, and I can handle short periods away from the hospital.

I will still be here for some time, the new medication has not yet kicked in.  But in the meantime I am learning strategies to manage my disease, my warning signs, my triggers, how to handle the outside world.  I am learning to practice mindfulness, to live in the moment, to be grateful for the small things.

I have a brilliant, loving and supportive band of family and friends, everything to live for, but it still frightens me how quickly destructive thoughts can kick in and take over.

I am living day by day, no, make that hour by hour, in the knowledge that my mood can change in an instant and I am not well enough to look after myself yet.

So if you were of the same opinion as me, that those who commit suicide are somehow weak and selfish, the next time you hear that someone has either committed or attempted suicide, try to think again, I know I will!

If you are suffering a mental illness or considering suicide,
please talk to someone, your GP, call Lifeline on 13 11 44
or go to your local hospital emergency department.

If you are in physical danger please call 000 (Australia only).

Jo xxx

1 comment:

  1. I don't know what to say but I am thinking of you. A close friend just spent 3-4 wks in public mental health hospital .


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