This afternoon I was having a cry on the phone to a friend who lives out of town. After I finished having my pity party, I asked them how they were. They were kinda cagey about how things were going, but for some reason I kept pressing and they told they had taken a bottle of strong painkillers and were just going to give up and die.
I did not know their address and I could not convince them to dial 111. They had a lot of compelling reasons why it wasn't worth carrying on. Now I know that life is not like the movies where the police find you by your cell phone number; but I couldn't do nothing, so I dialled 111 and told the dispatcher everything I could think of about the person. The 111 dispatcher told me they would not stop till they found the person and so they did.
Did you know that the police will do that? I didn't but I had to try. I felt like a shitty friend because even though I knew my friend had problems, I hadn't done any physical thing to help. I mean winning lotto would definitely have solved a lot of their problems, but short of that I felt hopeless. Sometimes we can't solve things for our friends because they have to have the guts to do it for themselves.
Suicide is a long term solution for a short term problem. I don't know how my friend is going to solve their short term problems, but I do know if they died tonight, they would never find out. I hope that they will find a way out of the dark place, that they will make some changes in their life, that they will ask for (and accept) help, even though that is hard. I may have been a shitty friend and I don't have to answers to their problems, but I don't want them to just give up and have no hope.
Life is a weird thing. It can seem so grim, it can seem like there is no hope, but things change. Slowly but surely things get better. Sometime we have to make really scary steps before things change, sometime we have to put ourselves in a really exposed position. We have to say out loud, I need help. We might have to say it over and over again to several people. But if we keep right on fighting, we can change our situation. In a week, a month or a year we will look back and see how far we have come. I don't believe we are too old or too young to start taking those brave brave steps. Keep fighting friends.
You have the power to say,
this is not how my story ends
If you or someone you know is feeling like they cannot go on, here are some numbers to ring. Or you can ring the police, turns out they will find you and make sure you are ok.
Need to talk? Free call or text 1737 any time for support from a trained counsellor
Lifeline 0800 543 354 or 09 522 2999
Suicide Prevention Helpline 0508 828 865 (0508 TAUTOK0)
Youthline 0800 376 633 or free text 234
Samaritans 0800 726 666