It's suicide prevention week.
I spent most of my life (29 out of my 33 years) feeling suicidal. "Suicidal Ideation" is what the professionals called it. Suicide sounded like a good idea. I dreamed of my death every single day. I prayed for it every single night. I hoped it would come, and on many days I planned for it. I attempted it once. I lived through it - in part because I immediately started throwing up. Apparently, although I didn't want to live, and didn't believe I deserved to live, my body decided something else. I also tried starving myself, and an addiction to exercise... somehow I survived those too. I'm pretty darn lucky.
I've sat here trying to think of what I would want someone like me to know. The only thing I can think of to say is, "LIVE!"
I wanted to die, because mostly, I felt like I was already dead. I was still breathing, but I wasn't living. I was doing what I thought other people wanted me to do. I was being who I thought other people wanted me to be. Looking back, I can say I barely even existed. That is no way to live... and something deep down inside of me knew it. That is the part of me that kept telling me to either LIVE or DIE. (I'm not a black and white thinker... at all.)
A while ago, I was talking to a friend. He was suicidal. He thought his death would end the craziness he felt, and he figured if he died, he wouldn't have to live with disappointing others. Since I had felt that so strongly myself, I had words that were helpful.
"You go through life trying to make everyone else happy. And then one day, you say, 'I can't live like this anymore!' What do you do? Do you end your life? Or is there another option? For me, at one point I just decided, it's my life, and if I'm going to live, DAMMIT I'm going to LIVE! It's my life, and I can't live it for anyone else anymore."
It sounds strange now... I thought I was selfish. I thought I was SUPPOSED to live my life for everyone else... In fact, that is one of the things that kept me alive for so long. I wasn't willing to put my sister through the hell of my death. I'm glad I had that bond with her, because it kept me alive long enough to find myself. There came a point where even living for her wasn't enough to keep me breathing. There came a moment when I had to love myself enough to live for me.
I understand feeling sad. I understand feeling overwhelmed. I understand wanting out and away from all the hell. I also know what it feels like to find ME. I know how good life can be.
So, my advice is simple. Find a way to survive today, because tomorrow (or sometime in the future) will be worth living for. My life is nothing like I thought it "should" be, and everything that I want it to be.