A symptom of my depression is suicidal thinking.
Suicidal thinking is like a parasite. It latches on to you and eats away at all the resources you have to fight it, so that it can stay exactly where it wants to; pressing replay in your brain. Even on a relatively good day, it’s there – the thought of causing your own death.
But when every day is punctuated by suicidal thoughts, how do you know when to seek help?
For me, I know I need help when simple thoughts build to a crescendo of concrete planning.
I’m currently in hospital. In fact, I just spent my 30th birthday in here.
I think there is a perception that hospital provides the time and space to explore your thoughts and feelings in a therapeutic environment. Unfortunately, this is not my experience. And what with the NHS being so woefully underfunded, it’s not really that surprising.
So what is my experience?
Hospital has provided some (much needed) respite from dealing with suicidal thinking alone. I have been very lucky to have found a few nurses with whom I seem to have made a genuine connection and seem to really care. They have carried some of the thoughts for me, and given me some semblance of a break.
I’m being discharged in a few days. Am I ‘recovered’? Not at all. Am I even ‘better’? No. But the hope is that my depleted resources have been restored enough that I can cope on my own again.
I really hope so.