I know I’m not the only person with depression who has suffered from suicidal ideation. Haven’t we all said “I wish I were dead” one time or another? If I am not careful, I easily get caught in that rut and I find myself thinking it along with the popular “I would be better off dead”, or “I feel like a burden”. If you looked at my charts in the doctor’s office you would see this term many, many times. Sure, I actually tried to kill myself on more than one occasion, but the track of my illness has more often than not caused me just to consider it or plan it. Most of the time, ideation does not end in a suicide attempt, it just causes me to envision it all the time. I even role-play and think about what would happen to the people I love after I was dead.
Those people I love are the exact reason that ideation does not turn into an attempt. At 45 years old, I have learned a few dirty tricks to turn my mind away from glamorizing suicide in my thoughts. All those years of therapy didn’t go to waste, because at some point in my life I started using coping skills to convince myself that suicide is not an option for me, so STOP THINKING ABOUT IT DUDE! Can it be that easy? No, it is just one of the things I do to turn my mind away from thinking about suicide.
I used to laugh when someone told me to take a shower or run around the block to get my mind off of it. But that was my younger and less experienced self laughing because I have found out that those things actually do help to take your mind off suicide. My other self also used to cut to take my mind off unhealthy thoughts, but I’ve talked about that before. I’ve learned not to replace one bad thing with another.
But does learning that something is bad for you always the answer? No, I still think about killing myself, all the time. No amount of medication can help with it. Every time I have a fight with my wife I think about it. I guess I am hard-wired to automatically conceive killing myself as the first way to solve a difficult problem.
The difference now is that I don’t obsess about it for long. I do the same thing with cutting. I let my mind linger on it only in passing if I am triggered into thinking about unhealthy alternatives like these. I know it sounds too simple, but it works for me most of the time. I do still have my “bad days”, but I am still walking the planet, right?
Thats what works for me. What works for you? Please leave a comment…..
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