Monday, 11 January 2016

Depression

Seems like a weird title for a post doesn't it but if you've suffered from it or know someone who has or does then you will have some understanding as to how debilitating this can be to a sufferer and those who suffer alongside them - it can literally fracture a family, a relationship, a person and can lead sufferers to a dark dark place where the only option that makes any sense to them is to take their own life.
But so many of us know this right? The death of Robin Williams bought the subject of depression to the forefront and for what seemed like the first time (certainly in my lifetime) depression became a topic that people openly discussed and for the majority of what I heard or read people seemed genuinely understanding of it, or were at least sympathetic to a condition that they had previously not given thought to or had thought of it as a mental thing we don't talk about.

I was 8 years old when I first attempted to kill myself!
With no internet back then my 8 year old brain was limited in its capacity to understand how to go about this act - thankfully! I think it went as far as "stop breathing" - I mean that's the gyst of it right? Just stop breathing! So my method went as far as tying a plastic bag over my head and laying on my hands. I can laugh about it now but deep deep down I can still feel that desperation that took me to that point.
Looking back I honestly believe I came into this world damaged/fractured/with baggage - call it what you will - and with a tenacious ability to absorb worry/stress/a belief that I was unloved and not good enough. I distinctly remember looking at the world as cold and heartless though I would not have been able to percieve it as that back then. Back then the world just sucked!
Obviously my attempt to "stop breathing" by way of plastic bag did not work, I think it's absolutely impossible for someone to kill themself that way because no matter how much you believe you want it, the survival instinct kicks in and you whip that bag of your head and then cry/scream/berate yourself for being so fucking useless that you can't even get that right.
It didn't work the first time, nor the second, nor the third and it slowly began to sink in that I was stuck here because I seriously did not have the knowledge to think any further. I did however decide one day that I was going to jump from my parents bedroom window, I think I had been fighting with my brother as kids do and any mean thing said to me would just flip me over the edge. So I climbed that window ledge believing this would do the trick - I could "stop breathing" - but my brother dragged me back in.
Looking back I think the jumping from the window experience was more about trying to show someone - my brother at this point - how much I was hurting, not an actual attempt to "stop breathing". I say this because although alot of the incident is a blur and my brother probably remembers it alot different to me bless him, I distinctly remember sitting on the ledge for an amount of time first - surely if I had meant it I would have just jumped?
I guess I should thank my brother for saving me that day because let's face it, had I jumped I don't think from that height it would have killed me, I think it's much more likely I would have broken legs or worse, broke my back.

I can talk about these things now and I have learned what it was that put my head in that place at that time. As an adult I can process things differently but as an 8 year old, 9 year old, 10 year old etc I just did not have that ability.
I should also say that not once in my attempt to "stop breathing" was it ever about a cry for help, it was never in the hope of being found and someone realising something was wrong and it was never to punish anyone. I didn't want help, I simply didn't want to exist anymore!

1 comment:

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