Trigger warning: If you have personal experience of suicide or suicidal depression then you may find this post upsetting. If you’re currently struggling with suicidal thoughts and you’re in danger then please call 999 and request an ambulance immediately.
My dear girl
As I write this letter to you, I have tears pricking the back of my eyes. My heart hurts thinking of you lying in that hospital bed.
Because last night you took an overdose. It was your fourth. And it was your most serious attempt to take your life. You wanted to die. You wanted the darkness to end.
But more than that, you’re fed up with destroying the people who you love. You see the sadness and heartbreak in their eyes and you can’t cope with it anymore. You yearn to be able to take away their pain. Yet it feels like the only way to do this is to take yourself out of the equation. Permanently.
And this morning, at this moment, your world has ended. But not in the way you’d hoped. It’s ended because you’re still a part of it. You’re still breathing. You’re still alive.
You feel like a failure. How could you fail to remove yourself from the world? You thought you’d done enough. Enough to take your pain away. To take everyone’s pain away.
However, you’re still here.
And you’ve just woken up in a hospital bed, alone and confused. You’re more emotionally, physically and mentally broken then you’ve ever been in your life. Even wiggling your little finger leads to you being hideously sick. The physical aftermath of the overdose. Tragically, the emotional and mental aftermath will take longer to leave you.
I know that you’re already thinking of how and when you can take the next overdose. And you’re praying that the next suicide attempt will bring the sweet relief that you long for.
You’re 24 years old and you’re convinced that you’ll never live to see your 25th birthday. And you don’t want to. Because life has nothing more to offer you. Only the pain and darkness that you’ve experienced over the past few years.
My darling girl, I’m here to let you know that life has so much to offer you.
I can’t promise you that it will be easy. Because it won’t. And the next few months are going to be a living hell.
But in just under an hour things will begin to brighten. The darkness will lift. Your parents will arrive and they will wrap you in their love. Then one of your brothers will join them and you will return to your family home. And you will piece yourself together, thanks to the love of your family.
Because as much as you believe you are a burden to them, they don’t agree. They love you unconditionally. All they want is for you to be happy again. They are hurt and upset for you NOT because of you.
They remember you as a small child with bunches in your hair and a huge smile on your face. A little girl with a love of singing and dancing. They know that little girl is still inside you. At the moment, she may be hidden by the suicidal depression. But she is there. And she can be found.
How do I know all this?
My dear Lucy, I know all this because I am you. You and I are the same people. But I’m you in 15 years. I’ve lived a whole life that, at the moment, you can’t comprehend. You only see a future filled with pain, depression, heartache and misery. But I know that your future is beautiful.
And I can’t hold the tears back anymore. Because, my dear Lucy, you’re happy. You’re so happy.
Yes, you suffer from depression. I’m afraid to say that your depression is chronic. But it is manageable.
You will have relapses. And you’ll never forget how ill you’ve been. But you are a fighter and you’re strong. And you won’t ever let yourself be that girl lying in that hospital bed again.
You’ve had a career working for a dream organisation and surrounded by amazingly creative people doing a job you love. And you’re now building a second career as a freelance writer. And you’re helping others by sharing your life experiences.
You have amazing and loyal friends who you love to spend time with. Men and women who fill you with happiness and who make you smile. Friends who understand you and who love you for who you are.
You’re now closer to your family than you’ve ever been before. And you’re relationship with them is no longer one-sided. You are there for them as much as they are for you. And that’s a wonderful feeling.
Dear Lucy, I know that you currently think that you will never find someone who will love you. You doubt that you could ever meet anyone who will see all of you and still know that you’re the person that they want to spend the rest of their life with. But Lucy, that is not true. Because in a little over a year you will meet a wonderful man. Your soul mate.
And you will marry him. And then you will give birth to two beautiful children. A little girl and a little boy.
Yes, Lucy, you’re a wife and a mother. The two things that you always wanted in life. And the two things that you’re convinced you will never have. As right now you believe that you’re too hateful to deserve such happiness.
Oh, how wrong you are. You do deserve it. And in 15 years time, it will be yours.
You will have a life that you never thought possible.
So hold on beautiful girl. Weather the storms. Because I promise that the rainbows will appear.
I know all this because I kiss your rainbows goodnight every evening.
So please trust me and don’t give up.
All the love in the world
If you or someone you know is suffering from suicidal thoughts and is in need of immediate help then please go to your local A&E of call 999 and ask for an ambulance.
However, if you are struggling with suicidal thoughts but are not in immediate danger then you can contact:
Samaritans operate a 24-hour phone line which is available every day of the year. Please call 116 123 (UK & ROI). However, if you’d prefer to write down how you’re feeling or you’re not in a position to talk on the phone then you can email Samaritans at firstname.lastname@example.org. Samaritans offer a confidential service. You don’t even have to tell them your name if you don’t wish. And please remember that you can contact the Samaritans to talk to them irrespective of what is troubling you.
Childline is a free and confidential helpline for children and young people that can be used at any time. You can call 0800 1111 and rest assured that the phone number won’t show up on your phone bill. You can also head to the website and have a 1-2-1 chat with a counsellor.
PAPYRUS is a voluntary organisation that is run to help teenagers and young adults who are feeling suicidal. Their HOPEline is on 0800 068 41 41 or you can text them on 07786 209 697.