I see this all the time, hear it all the time.
People victim blaming, saying people who commit suicide are selfish and it makes my blood boil.
Even people who have been there and come out the otherside often look back and think of their actions as selfish.
That is just heartbreaking.
No one wants a mental illness, no one asks for suicidal thoughts.
No one wakes up in the morning feeling fine as rain and thinks “You know what will really fuck over my family and friends today? If I jumped in front of a train.”
Depression is a parasite that buries itself deep in your soul and corrupts the foundations of your entire being. Thoughts such as “I’m a burden on everyone I love” and “they’ll be better off without me.” Are often the driving points of suicidal thoughts. I can’t see anything selfish in those thoughts.
When I have been at my lowest points and suicidal, people have often told me to think of my son, what this would do to him.
Objectively, even when well, I think he might have been better off without me. (Not having an emotionally unstable mother during his formative years thus enabling him to have healthier coping skills with his own emotions and maybe breaking the generational cycle of mental illness).
If I genuinely and objectively feel I am vastly improving his life by removing myself from it, is that selfish?
And let’s be honest here, unwell people can be a burden.
I feel awful on those days when I’m really not up to life, my meds are making me sick, I’m not sleeping, have no energy and spend the day laying in bed with a pillow over my face and my ever forgiving partner comes home from work, hot and sweaty from a 10 hour shift at a manual labour job and still has to care for me.
Yet he does because he loves me and that’s what love is, he would never tell me I am a burden, yet I am.
I enrich his life in many other ways on many other days. A burden is not all I am, it is however some of what I am, some of the time.
Would he be better off without me?
There’s also the old adage..
Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem.
But it’s not temporary is it?
Mental illness tends to be a lifelong condition.
And sure, we can take our meds, go to therapy, learn to deal with the ups and downs of life.
But that’s just the point, there will always be downs. We live our lives carefully, taking note of how much we sleep and eat, what our moods, thoughts and behaviours are just waiting for the next plunge.
The fall back into misery, pain, despair, torment.
What human being doesn’t do everything they can to avoid pain and suffering?
Perhaps, the people stopping us from ending this are the selfish ones?
I am not promoting suicide as the answer, if you or someone you know is having suicidal thoughts please, please seek help.
Because in-between the thoughts of my loved ones being better off without me. I can see the sun through the clouds, I can see I do bring them joy, happiness, love and laughter. As much as I will be waiting for the downs, I can and do appreciate the ups.
Life, for everyone, is a rollercoaster.
Life with borderline personality disorder and bipolar is one of those airplanes that go up and down so fast you get to experience zero gravity.
You’ve just got to hold on tight and ride it out til the very end.