He called to say goodbye. He told me he loves me but the world hurts him too much. He said he was sorry and he cried. He wept and wept and I couldn’t do anything to help. I wanted to hold him, contain him safely while he sobbed.
I couldn’t console him. I knew it was hardly worth trying. All I could do was tell him I love him too and that I understand how he feels. I felt like such a fucking hypocrite. He even said that; he asked why he shouldn’t do it when I tried to about a week ago.
What was I supposed to say? I could only apologise for hurting him and offer weak promises that I won’t try again. I felt so desperate, because I know the place he is in and I know nothing helps. In suicide there is escape, there’s a fantasy that this will all end.
He’s safe now. But I am left feeling angry with myself for lying to him. I am pissed off that I gave him all the lines everyone gives me that I hate so much. It’s an insult to his intelligence for me to remind him how awful it would be for his wife, children and friends if he ended his life. He knows that. Just like I know that.
There is so much judgement about suicide. I would be devastated if he died, but I wouldn’t blame him. I wouldn’t call him selfish. Everybody is selfish, and ultimately we are all alone. Life is about surviving until you can’t anymore. We don’t judge someone in chronic physical pain for wanting to die, we say ‘oh it was a blessing’ or ‘she had no quality of life, at least she’s at peace now’.
If people knew anything about how it feels to be trapped in an existence that feels utterly hopeless they wouldn’t be so quick to jump to conclusions. I know and love some truly wonderful people who all have massive struggles that hardly anyone knows of or understands. When everything in your life is viewed through the lens of depression, even the most incredible blessings can feel miserable and profoundly lonely.
So here’s to you, my lovely, suicidal friend. You are such a beautiful man; kind, funny, hugely generous. I adore you and your family. I feel blessed to have you in my life and I am so sorry if I ever hurt you. Please keep fighting, keep getting back up. Forgive yourself when you get it wrong, everyone does sometimes. I can’t imagine how agonising it would be to lose you. I need you.
Please don’t leave me to do this without you.
Photo from Creative Commons, thanks to frankieleon.