Yesterday was World Suicide Prevention Day. I had sworn off doing anything remotely productive that day, so I didn’t post then, but now I feel I should have said something.
Things have been going quite well in my life for months. So far in my Abnormal Psychology class I have a perfect score, and even though we haven’t reached the first exam yet I have every online quiz done for the whole semester. All the little details of college have been falling into place. I’ve managed to drive to campus 6 times on my own.
Then I had some personal losses. Brent began working in inpatient and I was no longer able to see him, so instead of meeting his replacement I transferred all my prescriptions over to my family doctor. I tried to share good news with some people who’ve been very important to me in the past and despite knowing what to expect it still hurt terribly.
I had a conflict with Sadie and e-mailed her to say I wanted to terminate therapy. She said we’d discuss it in person the next Monday (2 weeks after my previous appointment) and then was sick that day and I couldn’t get another appointment for 2 more weeks.
I got some hopes up about possibly becoming part-time at work, so when I was asked to work every other weekend (instead of every 6th) I agreed, thinking that was the solution to making me part-time. As soon as I said yes I was told I would only be a .3 (part time is .5). I was so frustrated and upset, and went to talk to HR about it, where I was told my supervisor can’t make these kinds of changes without consulting them. So they planned to get involved, but I had no idea where that would lead.
I was working the weekend immediately following that Friday, and my weekend was going well. There was a short period of panic Sunday morning when the phones weren’t working correctly, but other than that it was a quiet weekend. Then I was walking casually down the hall, returning to my department, and out of nowhere I felt an intense urge to slit my wrists. Not the kind that results in a few bandages, but the kind where you bleed to death. I got downstairs and locked myself in my department, sobbing about how this kind of thing is going to keep happening over and over and I will never be fit to be a therapist for someone else when I can’t get my own life together.
That evening I struggled with these suicidal urges. And again on Monday, and still on Tuesday, when I followed up on DBT group by walking over to the main CMHC building and asking to speak with the on-call therapist, Jan. I rambled a bit incoherently and she smacked me with reality a few times. She said it’s quite possible that I won’t be able to work with people who are acutely suicidal or actively self-harming, but that leaves a wide variety of options that I can handle. She also talked about no one ever having their life together and feeling like an adult.
I explained about the plan to stop seeing Sadie, and how I said it was a Wise Mind decision, that I would be able to focus better on school if I wasn’t dealing with therapy and the reminders that I’m ill. I admitted that I was trying to pretend none of it was real. “And when has that ever been helpful?” Never. And I can never pretend it’s not real because I have to take medication four times a day, so there’s 1,460 reminders a year. After nearly a month of not seeing Sadie I’m no longer even sure about my decision. I felt confident at first, but over time I became sad and scared.
Jan went to talk to Dr. Bhatia, telling me that she worries about me sometimes and could go either way on the subject of inpatient. I begged her not to send me, as missing school would just make my life get worse. She came back from consulting him and had me sign a contract for safety with notes that I would: a.) see Sadie on Monday, b.) see my family doctor on Tuesday, c.) call a friend from my safety plan, and d.) follow the rest of my safety plan as needed.
So I got home, not telling mom where I’d been. It wasn’t until the next day that I mentioned it and she could not understand why I might need to talk to someone. The next day I had class, and I did not want to go. Mom offered to drive me, and it wasn’t that I was worried about driving, but I let her because that way it would guarantee that I’d go and not just drive off somewhere random. On the way home I was saying that if I’d gone to see Jan after class instead of two days earlier, I would have let her admit me. Mom told me to stop talking that way.
I have used so many distractions and so many social interactions trying to avoid these persistent thoughts. I do not want to die, I want to stop hurting. Before my last inpatient stay I had weeks where every little thing made my heart physically ache, and that feeling is back. Yesterday I finally got home and didn’t have the energy to keep fighting, so I gave mom a basket full of my pills and razors and asked her to go stash them somewhere hidden.
A part of me longs to go to inpatient. I can keep myself safe without being there, but staying 4 or 5 nights would help me feel better. Unfortunately it’s too late to do that without messing up my life again. First exam on Thursday, work on Friday. My window of opportunity has closed.