Seeing so much publicity surrounding the recent tragic loss of Caroline Flack and seeing on social media platforms some individuals claiming she and others that have taken their own lives chose the easy way out, I feel I need to speak out about this because believe you me there is nothing easy about choosing something so final, knowing that you are going to leave behind a world of pain for those you leave behind. How do I know this? I know because I am one of the lucky ones that were saved by the wonderful NHS after I tried to take my own life when I was 15. It is the individuals last ditch attempt to claim back some power over their own life, some control of a situation that they feel they have no control over. Getting to a point in life where you feel nothing you do will resolve the situation, no one can, or will help, you hit the lowest point you ever will.
I can certainly empathise with, but can’t personally comment on exactly how Caroline Flack felt at the time she chose to end it all, I can speculate though and in my personal opinion she was at rock bottom if not further down, being sacked from a job before the court case had even started (making her feel guilty when she potentially wasn’t), I won’t be dragged into the case the only people who can make true judgement on this were the people involved, but from there the media and gossips came out of the wood work and escalated the situation further. Not able to see the man she loved and probably several other contributing factors made her probably feel like her life was not worth living and she made that decision and for that all I can say is I’m sorry she felt that was her final potential only choice.
I can however tell you my story and firstly let me put to rest that “it is the easy way out”. When I was 15 I had already suffered bullying throughout my school life including the worst form in my opinion, bullied by someone you should trust implicitly, yes that’s right I was bullied by a teacher. My self esteem in senior school was pretty much none existent, picked on by a ring leader and his goons and also living in the shadow of my older brother impacted on my life dramatically (though I blame my brother for none of what happened, it was not his fault that I lived in his shadow). The stresses just kept building, certain teachers praising me in one breath but then telling me my brother would have done it better. The school wouldn’t listen, the odd staff member that tried to help soon stopped as there was only so much they could do, mental and verbal torture turned to physical and this boy, Darryl thought it was hilarious. For me it was a living hell.
On the day I decided enough was enough, my parents had been up to the school for what seemed to be the millionth time and I think they felt as helpless as I did a barrage of abuse from Darryl on the way home made me feel numb, like I didn’t even exist in this world. I had finally given up, I took a packet of strong painkillers to my room and a big glass of drink, think it was water. I wrote a note telling my family it wasn’t their fault I just couldn’t live like this any longer, nothing was ever going to get better and this was me taking control of my life again by ending it, it was my last piece of dignity and control that I had and I was going to use it to empower myself by making this final choice.
I proceeded to take the painkillers and almost as soon as I had taken the last one I started vomiting, this is ultimately what saved me according to the medical staff. I was totally out of it, in between vomiting I was passing out. I think it was my brother that found me and my note. I was rushed into hospital and because of the amount of vomit I had already brought up I had pretty much done the job of the activated charcoal that they usually give you to enable the reversal of the overdose. I was moved onto the children’s ward and observed overnight.
The following morning the psychiatric team came to see me accompanied by the nurse who had looked after me through the night. We talked about why I had done what I had done and did I still feel that I wanted to end my life, I told the truth, I was more angry that it had been allowed to get to that level of neglect from the school system. I hated myself for being so weak and I was told there and then that I was not weak I had the strength to make such a difficult decision, but a decision I should not of had to make. I went home strong in the knowledge that I had a very lucky escape and that the universe obviously had something grander in store for me.
Over the years some of the people who bullied me have either apologised to me face to face or asked my father to apologise to me on their behalf, which he refuses to do as it is there responsibility and their apology therefore they should do it to my face. The only person who never apologised is Darryl the head bully. I don’t suppose I ever will get that apology and it really doesn’t bother me anymore as thanks to him I have been to my lowest point and built myself up. It was never made public about my suicide attempt, it was kept like a dirty little secret and I grew up in a time where mental health was very much a taboo subject, now is my time to tell my story and let people know that there is always another option no matter how low you feel, but it is not the easy way out, you can always start again and rebuild. It breaks my heart to hear of children and adults taking their lives in this day and age through bullying, social and media pressure, and losing their sense of worth to the world.
This is one of the reasons I have set up my business in mental health, mindset and mindfulness well being. I want a person to learn to love themselves, understand that there is always a way back; and there is always someone who loves them and is willing to listen no matter what. If Brighter Horizons NE can save lives through teaching people to notice the signs either in themselves or others around them and also techniques to deal with the onset of negative mental health so they can reverse it and make it positive mental health again then the universe giving me a second chance will have all been worth it.
If you feel you or someone you know could benefit from my companies help please get in touch, https://www.facebook.com/RaeBrightHorizonsNE/
Never feel you have to suffer in silence, talk, find help, get in touch, Brighter Horizons NE ensures there is a Brighter Horizon for everybody.