At 13 I Decided Not To
In honor of National Suicide Prevention month and the upcoming World Mental Health Day in October, I want to share a secret with you that only two people on the planet know about me. When I was 13, I seriously considered suicide.
In honor of National Suicide Prevention month and the upcoming World Mental Health Day in October, I want to share a secret with you that only two people on the planet know about me.
When I was 13, I seriously considered suicide.
I remember it like it was yesterday.
It was 1974 and my parents were getting a divorce. Not your usual quiet divorce mind you, but a loud angry one. So angry they sued each other and dragged all of us into court to testify.
Now combine this with the fact that I was being bullied in school on a pretty regular basis and you get an angry, dark, and sad teenager with pretty bad self-esteem.
It was horrible.
After the court hearing, I spent the next few weeks slipping into the depths of depression. I fell deep into the abyss.
So one night I decided that it might be time for me to leave.
Who would miss me if I committed suicide? My parents were always fighting, and no one at school would care. I had a few friends but thought they would get over it quickly.
At least that’s what I thought at the time.
One night I went to my mother’s room and grabbed her bottle of aspirin. I then emptied the bottle and lined them up into several rows on my desk. As I stared at all the pills, I knew if I took all those aspirin, it would kill me.
I stared at them for a long time.
But instead of taking them, I decided to call the one person on the planet that got me. The one person I could always turn to… my best friend Vivienne.
She listened to me patiently while I explained what I was doing, and then she talked me out of it.
After our call, I scooped up all the pills and put them back into the bottle. I then grabbed a jacket and went to spend the night at her house. We talked well into the night and I woke up feeling better than I had in weeks.
It’s 45 years later, and I have devoted my life to helping people. Something that wouldn’t have happened had I not reached out to my friend. In fact, whenever I see the movie “It’s a Wonderful Life”, I think about that night all those years ago and am so grateful that I decided to stay. And yes, Viv and I are still close.
Remember, there is ALWAYS someone you can reach out to!
If not a friend or family member, then please reach out to the national suicide hotline at 800-273-8255. Kindest people in the world. You can also visit https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/
The world needs you.
Remember, you are a beautiful soul with a shining light. Your life has purpose. You might not believe it, but it does. Perhaps you’re here to create a new world!
You got this.