For National Suicide Prevention Week, we sent an email to our audience asking them a few questions about their experience with suicidal thoughts — specifically, how did they get through those trying times, and what advice or thoughts helped them along the way? We pulled out some common themes based on their responses.
Keep in mind that some responses may be triggering to readers. Please use discretion before continuing on.
Writing and Distraction
“I suffer with suicidal thoughts on a regular basis. It might be something I always have to deal with. When I’m really, really suicidal, I sit in my room, put on some positive, strengthening power songs, and write. I write all about the things going on in my life at that moment. Sometimes it comes out as poetry or prose, but mostly, just lots of scrawl on a page. But it helps. Eventually, I find myself writing positively; things that make me feel just a bit better about myself and my life.” - Pippa Lily
Pets, Family and the Consequences Suicide Has for Them
“There’s the fact that if I went through with it, my dog would be incredibly confused about why I never came back for her. Considering she's my service dog and we're constantly together, I imagine it'd be pretty bad for her.” - Briana Hedgepeth
“The best piece of advice I ever got was from a friend struggling from depression also. They said to think about my family and my friends and how devastated they would be if I committed suicide.” - Nancy Karg
“Thinking about my mom and what would happen to her if I committed suicide.” - Adam P.
Optimism for the Future
“When I am thinking about suicide, what keeps me going is the fact that I think that it will not be permanent and that tomorrow will be a new day; that a new hope will come for me and I will be happy during the next days to come.” - Amor Ranosa
“'Tomorrow's another day.’” - Rebecca Ann
"You've been here before and you survived and thrived ... You will survive and thrive again." - Liz Wilson
“Even in my darkest hour, I knew there was much more to live for in this life, and I did not want to miss out. Even when I attempted suicide at 17, I struggled when the drugs took hold because I knew I wasn't finished yet. I've had suicidal thoughts, but knowing that tomorrow could be better, brighter and bolder helped me keep the demons at bay.” - Lisa Rabey
Everyone Has Value and Worth
“It's not exactly advice, but there's a Tumblr post I saw a while back that's kind of stuck with me. If I could find it, I'd link it, but I think it starts off talking about how a lot of us feel worthless sometimes because we aren't being as efficient as others. Towards the end, it says something to the effect of, ‘Maybe some of us are only here to take dangerous things out of our dog's mouth, but that's just as useful.’” - Briana Hedgepeth
“'You matter to me.’” - Adam P.
“'I love you. Don't go.’” - Lisa Rabey
If you are thinking about suicide, help is available. Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255). You can also reach the Crisis Text Line by texting START to 741-741. For a list of international crisis centers visit this page: http://iasp.info/resources/Crisis_Centres/
If you are not in a crisis and would like someone to talk to online, visit the website www.7cups.com to chat for free with a trained listener.