Let’s Talk about Suicide. Because no one wants to.

If you or someone you know is in an emergency, call The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-TALK (8255) 

You can also visit the Maryland Chapter of the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention https://afsp.org/chapter/maryland 

I am telling you, there is someone in your life who has lived with suicidal thoughts and ideation and you don’t know it. In fact, there is a good chance they are currently living with these thoughts as you read this. They did, or do, want their life to end because they are living with a brain so chronically sick the only treatment they can see as successful is to stop existing. But you don’t know it.

You don’t know it because they are hiding it in plain sight, living their life as “normal” as possible. Their entire public persona is built around making sure no one knows they are in crisis. You see them smiling and laughing at gatherings or in the workplace. They’ve offered to help you out in your time of emotional need, giving you a sympathetic shoulder on which to lean. Maybe they have allowed you to vent your frustrations about all that is currently wrong with the world. When you were sick they made you a meal. Or they have simply helped you carry in a package from your overloaded arms. They have remembered your birthdays and sent well wishes, maybe even a card or a gift. In every instance they have wished to be gone from the Earth. But you had no clue.

The people in your life who live with suicide as an option don’t want to be a bother or a burden to anyone around them. Because a burden is what they believe they are. Each day they tell themselves they are a waste of space, oxygen, time and care. The people who want to stop existing wished they had never started. The desire to undo their own birth is one of the greatest they have. To make the world a better place they simply need to not be in it. And they are not worth getting any help.

Those who live with suicidal brains know there are people in their lives who have situations so much worse than they do. They reason, “Everyone has their own battles to fight, so there is no point in burdening someone with these thoughts.” The person who just lost their job or loved one is going through real pain and suffering, not the trivial worries of someone who shouldn’t have been born. 

The people who live with suicidal thoughts and ideation can sometimes be the most empathetic and thoughtful people in your life. This is because they don’t want anyone else to feel the pain, loneliness and bleak suffering they themselves feel. And yet they believe they do not deserve the same treatment or help. So they don’t reach out to anyone.

I know this as fact, because it is something I have lived with since I was in elementary school.

Before you read further or grow unnecessarily worried, know at this point and time I am more than fine. As I wrote before about my depression, I am currently at a place with my mental illness where I can safely talk about it. I am not currently in crisis. I have been many times, but this is not one. If it was, I would not be writing this at all. If I was in crisis you would not know. That’s the point of this article.

If you are rattled by what you read, I hope you are more aware. If you can relate to anything I wrote, I feel for you more than others could comprehend and I am here for you. Please reach out to me, or to anyone you trust. YOU ARE WORTH IT. I know your own brain is against you, but I also know you are so much more than your brain is telling you. You do matter and you are loved and you will be missed. You may not believe what you read from strangers or random memes or social media posts, but you can believe me – because I have lived it just as you are.

This week is Suicide Awareness Week and September is Suicide Awareness Month. Every Monday in September I will be writing about suicide: personally living with thought process and the mental illnesses that accompany it, how to get help, and losing someone to mental illness. I will also tackle the myths and stigmas that surround suicide to help those who don’t live it understand why people are reluctant to get help.

So many people are in mental health crises and are currently being untreated. Some you know of and many you don’t. I hope this month you will take time to learn about suicide. It may not be something you want to talk about, but ignoring it never helped anyone.
If you or someone you know is in an emergency, call The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-TALK (8255)

The article, Let’s Talk about Suicide. Because no one wants to. was written by Elizabeth Schap and first appeared on just B more.


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