"Why Would You Try To Kill Yourself?"
I can't talk for anyone but me, and I wouldn't try to, the reason for one trying to take their own life aren't always complicated, but they are so personal. There are so many songs, films, and books about the subject that sometimes I feel we can become desensitised to the act of suicide, especially when you're the one who's tried to kill yourself.
I am unfazed by the fact that I don't know how many times I tried to kill myself, (5 or 6 last year, 0 this year, go me), but not everyone has a blasé acceptance of the act. These are people, fathers, sons, daughters, mothers who are people and they think, breath, and they are hurting, so much. There's always a path of destruction around attempted and successful suicides, with family and friends angry, hurt, scared. Never under estimate the fear of almost losing someone, or that fear ruling the mouth and the brain to say hurtful things.
When I was a youngling and started self harming I met a fantastic woman, who works so hard to bring awareness to the growing issue that is youth self harm, youth suicide, and mental illness. Jude focus' on the trauma's that can set this all in motion. Wellbeing projects attempts to dispel myths, but more importantly, bring faces to the amount of data we are subjected to.
10% of young people in the UK self harm
It's a number, and it's hard to relate to, but every young person that makes up that 10% is just like you, or me, and they are scared or unhappy and they need support, understanding and help.
After 13 years of self harm, countless suicide attempts and all the rest, I can't honestly say I'll never try to kill myself again, I've felt low this month, and the month previously, and the idea of eternal respite has crossed my mind, but I haven't acted on it. I am never surprised when I find out someone, a friend, has hurt or tried to hurt themselves, I'm more surprised that they haven't.
Those of us that are clients of the secondary health services in the Uk exist in a world where scars on the arms, stories of being chased by the police and restrained by doctors and nurses are commonplace, and thats unnerving. If I sit back and actually think about it, it's not normal. Broken bones, stitches, stomach pumped can become a badge of honour, "Hey look, I've been REALLY ill". Mental Illness is predominantly un-seen, but the effects of it are seen, the wounds, the broken homes, the broken relationships, the gaps on the cv, it all whispers to this world where living just isn't worth it. When those on the outside look in, the wounds are a proof that things aren't actually ok. Hospital becomes verification from the establishment that actually, you are ill, and it's ok.
I don't agree with the 1 in 4 suffer from Mental Illness, it lumps those of us with Personality Disorders, Mood Disorders and Psychotic Disorders all together, it pushes us into a statistic. My PD diagnosis is so different from a Schizophrenics, we face different challenges, different therapies will work, different medications won't. It also brings together those with biological factors, and organic mental health problems, and those with situational mental health illness. Where again, support, and advice will differ.
My problem with it all is, it is numbers, and numbers can mean nothing. They are an abstract.
These are people, and they are hurting.