Suicide: The Door To Nowhere
Was It Really Only Yesterday?
I was looking out from inside that door, thinking about the end. All I would have to do is walk out, close my eyes, and fall forward. That would end it all.
No more pain.
No more sorrow.
No more sadness.
No more thinking about what "should have been" or "could have been."
No more wishing and hoping.
No more seeing others walk by with their fancy duds and their electronic trappings, knowing that I would never be like them.
No more hearing their incessant songs of peace, love, and happiness that grate on my nerves to the point that I could scream!
No more would I have to look at the picture-perfect families in the grocery store, at the park, and passing by in cars, waving to strangers as if they were friends.
Where Do Suicidal Thoughts Come From?
Anyone can experience suicidal thoughts, whether or not there is a mental illness present. They usually appear as a result of certain conditions that come together for reasons that are beyond stating here. The combination of events, past experiences, feelings, and thoughts center on three basic areas:
- Opportunity to escape
Like a cracked windshield in a worn-out vehicle, hopelessness distorts our view of reality. We are unable to see past the negative. It becomes such a part of us that we think that what we are experiencing truth.
Rather than being able to reason, we succumb to the victimization, the voices in our head taunting, criticizing, grating, and grinding us down to the point where it's impossible to see any light. All roads lead in a downward spiral as we sink further and further into an abyss of darkness.
With the opportunity to escape, the die is cast, the plot is set, the plan is made. The way is open. Suddenly, hope is rekindled and there is a relaxed state of mind. It is okay to go forward now, there is nothing standing in the way, and the steps begin.
Thoughts Associated With These Emotions
Opportunity to Escape
There is no future.
You should never have been born.
There it is, a way out.
You have lost your destiny.
No one cares about you.
Do it now, there is no better time.
No matter what you do, there will never be enough.
You are less than the dust of the earth.
No one will ever know.
You can't do it, so don't try.
It doesn't matter any more.
Pain will come to an end.
This is the way things are, they will never be different.
You don't deserve to live.
You will have peace at last.
Do you know someone personally that committed suicide?
Why Didn't I Ask for Help?
Who would I ask? You?
Didn't you see me when you passed me on the street, my head down, my shoulders stooped, and my eyes filled with tears?
Didn't you notice when I brushed you in the marketplace, hoping for just a small touch of humanness to soften the blow of my emptiness?
Didn't you hear me cry out in the night when the demons were surrounding me, forcing me to drink the gall of bitterness, then suffocating me with shame and hopelessness?
Didn't you understand my plea for help when I said that life wasn't worth living?
Didn't you sense my desperation when you asked me how I was, and I hung my head and mumbled?
Why didn't I ask for help?
Because I knew that no one would answer... not even you.
Calling for help is embarrassing; it's a humiliating admission of need, and experiencing that kind of disgrace is the last thing we want.— Fil Anderson
How I Have Coped With Suicidal Thoughts
We cannot just ignore suicidal thoughts; they do not go away by themselves. They must be addressed at the moment that they occur.
In order to do so, we have to see our thought patterns for what they are. The red flags are evident in the chart above. The words "ever," "never" and "no one" are blanket statements that give us those feelings of worthlessness and hopelessness.
When we get caught in the whirlpool of thinking that the whole world is against us, our reasons for living go downhill fast! Two tools we can use are addressed below: covenants and journaling.
Decide now that you will never commit suicide. Making a covenant allows us to think through a problem ahead of time and make a decision concerning it while we are in the best position to do so. Once the decision has been made, we are able to go forward, knowing that we can depend upon the covenant to protect us.
For me, deciding not to commit suicide saved my life. My battle with mental illness often left me feeling that there was no hope for my future. Because I had already made the decision not to commit suicide, I was able to do what it took to work through the distressing thought process that was plaguing me.
I found that as I wrote down my feelings, I could see the distorted thought processes more readily. Here are some excerpts from 11-05-2002:
"I feel that I have a mental block. I am in denial. I want to think that my physical well-being is at stake here, so I keep trying to rest to make the symptoms go away...
Knives. . . it is interesting that they should be the ones to trigger my suicidal thoughts. When I make a mistake, or don’t please someone, I feel worthless, like I have no reason to live anymore.
I know that is wrong, but that is what happens. That is how I feel right now. How can I lift someone else’s spirits when I feel this way? How can I even go on? What do I do when I feel worthless?
I know what I can do. I can listen to good music. I can read. I can seek for some kind of inspiration that will help me go on……"
What Could You Have Done?
Do you really want to know?
You could have looked at me.
You could have talked to me and treated me like I was a worthwhile human being!
You could have stayed with me while I was hurting.
You could have noticed when I stumbled and fell, and couldn't pick myself up.
You could have shared just a moment of your time with a weary traveler, wandering on a road to nowhere.
You could have seen the pain in my eyes, and given me just a small ounce of comfort.
You could have visited me when I was locked in the prison of my soul.
You could have....if you would have.
But now it is too late.
And all things shall be in commotion; and surely, men’s hearts shall fail them; for fear shall come upon all people.— D & C 88:91*
How Can We Help Those in Pain
Having a strong support network is the greatest deterrent to suicide. People who are suicidal often leave clues as to what they are feeling. If we listen to their verbal and body language, we can pick up on them. Our job is to act like a mirror and reflect them back to the person.
When they hear the same words coming from us, the shock factor might just be enough to wake them up to what is happening. The distorted thought patterns don't look so dangerous coming at us from the inside, but when we hear them coming from someone else, we realize how untrue they really are.
Our ability to encourage and strengthen others helps them to see that they are worthwhile people, that there is hope, and that they can go on. In the song by Sidewalk Prophets, "The Words I Would Say," we hear some examples.
Take the time to help someone today. You never know when you just might be the person who stands between them, and the door to nowhere.
The rate of suicide amongst those with mental illness is staggering. The dragons of depression, rage, anxiety, guilt, and other negative self-esteems eat us alive if we don’t have the tools to fight our battle against them.— Introduction, The Emotional Survival Handbook
This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.
© 2015 Denise W Anderson