National Suicide Awareness Day: A Reason To Swim

kettle mag
Written by Taylor

Tomorrow I meet with my 9th therapist.

Tomorrow I meet with my 9th therapist. This time, however, it’s different. It is MY choice. Not my doctor’s, not my parents’, not my work colleagues or friends. Mine. Will this make a difference?


The Mental Health Foundation stated that “1 in 4 people will experience some kind of mental health problem in the course of a year.” I am one of those 1 in 4 people.


I have clinical depression. And this has been ongoing for years now. It started in high school, and it was made particularly worse after an almost-fatal car crash I was involved in, as a passenger, back in 2010.


With the tragic demise of Robin Williams, it is only fair that the illness that is depression has come to the forefront. But what do we do about it? I have seen 8 therapists, tried to kill myself, and been so full of anti-depressants that I honestly wasn’t aware of who I was anymore.


Running out of solutions


Crying on bathroom floors became “my thing.” My friends lost interest in me. My family put me on “suicide watch.” All I wanted was to disappear, to no longer exist.


It’s hard to explain why you feel so sad. I would – and still do – get a tightening of the chest, a drowning, suffocating feeling. I can almost picture the water coming up over my head and I panic. I cling on and on, telling myself that I have a great family, a great life.


But when that water goes above your head? It’s too late. You can’t breathe. There is nothing that can convince you to feel happy. You feel disconnected with the world. You feel this utter despair. You feel alone.


Therapy didn’t work for me as, by nature, I am cynical. Therapists sit there with a sympathetic smile upon their faces and ask “and how did that make you feel?”


Please. Really? Ugh. I hated them trying to blame everything on other people, or giving me breathing exercises and telling me to workout. (I’m in ripped jeans, an old fusty smelling hoodie, and my hair hasn’t been washed in a week. You really think I can make myself exercise?)


One even gave me a basket of toys to play with. Another kept calling me ‘Laura.’


I'm ready to talk


So why have I chosen to go back? I can feel another meltdown coming. I can see that water starting to rise. This time though, I am ready to talk about things. I am ready to talk about that car crash, I am ready to talk about my failed relationships, and I am ready to talk about how I feel.


If this is what makes the difference, then how do we get people to this point before it’s too late?


Therapy and medication did not work for me for years, and I was lucky I was found before I took that knife to myself. What if I hadn’t been found? And what if this doesn’t stop the oncoming meltdown? Then what?


Today is National Suicide Awareness Day. More awareness has to be made. We can’t afford to lose any more people this way. We need to give a reason to swim.


What do you think? Have your say in the comments section below.