Tag Archives: suicide

What I started writing yesterday and stuff I did today

What I started writing yesterday and stuff I did today

So this is what I wrote yesterday:

I am so flipping enraged. Just came from seeing my pcp. He was interested in how I was doing with the med change. Jerk said he was extremely skeptical about opioids helping me at all. Well take this chickenshit, my pain is reduced 50% aside from flares, which nothing seems to help. He was glad he was wrong. But can you imagine the big “I told you so” if I got no relief? I can’t believe the ignorance. Totally dumbfounded and hurt I would left to deal with excruciating pain and nothing to treat it with when there is something to treat it. So anyone who says opioids don’t work for CRPS, THEY ARE FULL OF CRAP!! So I then tell him my back has been acting up due to weather changes. My lumbar spine and sacrum do not want to move. Asked if taking ibuprofen was ok and he says it has risks of heart problems and hypertension. But mostly stomach issues. I should use it sparingly. Why the fuck is this over the counter if it causes so many problems? And doctors prescribe it like candy or more potent NSAIDs like naproxen or diclofenac?? Idiot. I just rolled my eyes. I cannot believe this idiot is practicing medicine at a world class hospital.

Today I find out that he is worried about my sodium levels as they dropped again since the last time I had them checked. He is going to talk to my psychiatrist and has ordered blood and urine tests to rule out what is causing my blood sodium to drop other than medication. I wrote back to him and asked what the tests were (I am a lab geek, after all) and if the PCOS I have might be affecting my pituitary, thus messing up my blood levels. I don’t think I will get an answer tonight as I thought of this around 1900. He did tell me that if I felt ill to go to the urgent care.

I spent most of the day clearing off my bed so I can change my bed sheets. I had to do it in increments because my back kept flaring if I stood longer than 10-15 minutes. Then I couldn’t find my reacher on my bed so finally cleared off nearly everything except my office essentials like my journal, laptop, and book that I am reading. I made pancakes this morning and then had buffalo wings for dinner. I was so sleepy after dinner that I had to lay down. I was hoping to sleep but I couldn’t.

Tomorrow, I will be able to change my sheets. I plan on washing them and my blanket. I have another set of blankets that I will put on. They won’t be as warm as the Red Sox fleece I am using now. I think I am going to put the hospital blanket on and then the Red Sox. That should keep me warm and if I am too warm, I can always take it off. I have to keep my leg warm because the AC might make my foot cold. Plus I get cold and like to get cozy under the blankets at night.

I was feeling really down last night. Pain was elevated and so was my suicidality. I wrote a blog. When I finished it, I sent it off to a couple of suicidologists, including the president of the American Association of Suicidology because something she posted on Twitter bothered me and I had written about it. She tweeted me in the morning and we had a discussion but I could tell she wasn’t getting what I was trying to say. It amazes me that these people want to prevent suicide yet belittle the thoughts of those who actually live with chronic suicide ideation. She had written a study that had showed more than 132 people are affected per suicide. It was dispel the thoughts that Dr. Shneidman had that at least six people were affected. He said this but never studied it. No one knows where he got this number and he is deceased so we will never know. Her study was important. But what the bereaved suicide loss persons don’t realize is that saying loved ones will be hurt and others will be affected, some how guilt trips them into staying when they do not wish to live anymore. I was trying to explain this and we weren’t getting anywhere. Depression already caused excessive amounts of guilt. Add this information and it is overwhelming, which is what I was trying to get at but obviously wasn’t explaining right. She is a very intelligent person but I really think that lived experienced people and others who think of ending their lives might be too painful for her to deal with and so gets offended. I have seen it happen to me one too many times. Yes, it does make you stop and think of who you are hurting when you are thinking of taking your life. But then you (the suicidal person) have to wonder, is my suffering greater than those I love? And if this was a physical, terminal illness like cancer, would they still feel the same?

It just bothers me so much that people who are already suffering from huge amounts of pain, physically and mentally, still go on with their lives because they basically feel trapped. I know I do. I feel trapped by not want to cause pain to my family and friends with my death and the pain I already have that I was so desperately to end. It is tearing me apart some days, especially when the dawn approaches and I no longer have such intense feelings of ending my life. One of the suicidologists was glad I had made it through the night. She was the only one that said that. I am sure the others would have thrown my ass in the hospital if they could. I write a lot about my feelings because I don’t have a lot of support. It is also cathartic for me to write. If I lose this, for whatever reason, I know I will die. I think I even emailed my psychiatrist last night about why am I still around? Why am I still here. And will she let me go? I was half expecting a response or a phone call. I got neither. I see her next week so I know I will talk about it, least I hope to if I am not chickenshit. She sometimes scares me because she has this way about her that when she says something, I have to listen and “follow orders”. I have never not done what she said when she says it in that tone she has. She has known me for a long time. I respect her a lot and she respects me a lot. She looks up a lot to me because I have been through so much.

Next week is going to be difficult as I have a lot going on. But right now, all I care about is changing my sheets and reading Harry Potter as well as keeping track of the Sox. Oh, almost forgot, the blog that I wrote early this morning was chosen by some paper and published on their platform. Pretty cool!

Painsomnia and Midnight Demon Friday 22 June 18

I had started a blog on my laptop to publish yesterday but my brain kept getting foggy and couldn’t focus. I knew if I forced myself to write, it would come out crappy.

Now it is after 2 am. I can’t sleep. Midnight Demon is out. Has been since 10 but had no writing urges. I’m just writing now because I felt like it. I feel suicidal. Been planning for months and now it is almost time. I’m wondering where the weeks went. I haven’t done much other than look over my will. My pension is still wherever it is with my employer. I have emailed my psych that my death is inevitable. I asked her to let me go.

Pain has been decreased by 50% since my new longer acting pain med was started last week. But it does nothing for flares. I am not in a flare. Just pain that is left over from the meds. It doesn’t take all the pain away. Nothing will do that. But this pain is what is keeping me up. That and the thoughts of ending my life. It is like a monkey on my back. It goes away for a while and then comes back full force.

It is a familiar feeling. A part of me knows it will pass. Another parts truly believes this will be the end. I am tired of fighting this. I had made my decision 3 months ago. Now the 3 months is almost up. I extended the date due to circumstances beyond my control. Next week I will check out the location. I hope it will be suitable. I am still afraid I won’t go through with it. My psych might intervene. I don’t know if I will end up back in the hospital. I told her it was useless.

My hope level has been fluctuating a lot. My friend reminded me I’ve been in rough patches before and got through them. I didn’t tell her this was it. I feel so stupid. One of the suicidologists I know that is the president of AAS did a study on the effects of a suicide. In the study she found that >132 people are affected. If that holds true, I will have ~400 or more. And that just includes my online/high school/ co workers friends. Doesn’t include my humungous family.

I feel guilty about this. Today she posted saying that it was a reminder to suicidal persons as they often feel no one care or that no one will miss them. Makes me mad. I don’t want to cause pain to others yet why should I go on in torment of my CRPS and depression? I feel it is a guilt trip. A huge one at that. I stuff those feelings when I am deeply suicidal. Then when it lowers or I look at the people I love, I wonder how could I do this to them? I am in agony over this. It is truly hurting me. Call it ambilvalence. Call it selfishness (please don’t as that is NOT what it is but i don’t know another word). I just am so conflicted as to what to do. I can’t stuff them. I want to die. I need to die. My time is coming. Question is, to be or not to be.

About depression that I have to get off my chest

About depression that I have to get off my chest

There has been a LOT of talk lately about depression being treatable. Let me say first, that for some, it is. Therapy has been helpful to some in dealing with it. Medications and therapy still prove to be useful in treatment of depression or actually any mental illness. It was once thought that schizophrenia was a medication only illness. But I learned through one of my suicidologists that isn’t always true, as there was a paper written by him about he helped decrease an individual’s suicide risk by seeing him weekly or more if suicide was more present. It helped the patient feel cared for. If I find the article in my files, I will share it if you care to read it.

I am in no way saying you should NOT get help if you are feeling depressed. But my experiences (which are not the same to the whole depression population) beg to differ. I have yet to find anything that helps the mood shifts. Since my long time therapist stopped seeing me for reasons I have still yet to learn, I have been the most unstable and hopeless I have been in the 16 years I was in “treatment” with her. We had our disagreements about treatment. Transference and countertranferences were helpful at times but were no long lasting. She stuck with the way she was treating me and I stuck to being, well, depressed and suicidal.

What I have to get off my chest is that sometimes, depression is untreatable in a small percentage of people. There is such a thing as treatment resistant depression. Despite ECT (“shock” therapy), medication, and therapy, one can still feel depressed. There are a trillion reasons for this. Sometimes it has to do with the trauma one experienced. Some has to do with biology itself, that the genetic predisposition of a person makes them depressed. Other times it has nothing to do with a trauma or situation. It just happens that you start withdrawing from life, slowly at first and before you know it, you can’t go back to things you loved because, frankly, you are too depressed. Sometimes you maybe too depressed to seek help and a friend or family member needs to push you to get it. The thing is, depression still exists despite treatment. Some people have suffered depression for years and have never told a single soul. They are the small percentage that still go on with their episodes after they pass. They are less likely to die by suicide. Hell you don’t NEED depression to end your life. It has happened. Look at the Shawshank Redemption movie. The warden was “well” mentally and rather than be arrested and humiliated, he killed himself. Would anyone have thought he would do such a thing? No. And that is what my point is. Although we know what the risks are for suicide, depression and mental illness is only a small window into those risks. There are some people who die that have no history of mental illness yet die by suicide. I won’t go into more discussion about it because this is a loaded issue. I suggest reading the Myths and Facts of Suicide by Thomas Joiner. It is a really good book about what I am talking about.

I can only talk about my experience, no one else’s. I have been depressed since I was 8, maybe younger. I only know this because I started thinking suicide was a good idea at that age. I was 10 when I tried to end my life for the first time. I suffered from depression and after taking Prozac, became bipolar because the medication caused mania like symptoms. Not once during my years of being on medication AND therapy did my thoughts of suicide leave me fully. Neither did depression. There were brief times where I felt contentment. I honestly don’t believe in happiness. Like anger, it is a fleeting emotion and doesn’t last. But feeling contentment does happen for me and I sometimes feel comfortable in it. I know it isn’t going to last long. It never does. The depression always finds a way back, maybe not right away but it does come back. Despite some of my successes in life, graduating from high school, getting my Associate’s degree, publishing two books, I still was depressed. I was elated for a little while but it was fleeing. Just like when I wrote the article for the New York Times. I couldn’t believe and still don’t, that it happened. I still have the check that one day I will frame along with the article. But soon after all the paperwork was filed and I was waiting for it to be published, I was intensely depressed. The New York fucking Times was publishing something I wrote and instead of being happy as a pig in shit, I was depressed. I learned that no matter what my success in life was, no matter how much money I made, good job that I had, I was going to always be depressed. I could do one of two things. I could accept that this was the way it was always going to be or fight it. I chose to accept it.

I knew I had been fighting it since I was 16 that I would always have to take medication for my mental illness. It wasn’t easy but I knew if I was to avoid a lifetime of hospitalizations, I would need to take medicine to hold off the demons. Yet despite this theory, I was still hospitalized. Many times. Some times it was like a revolving door during my worst episodes. In 1994, I suffered a huge major depressive episode. I was hospitalized almost every two weeks and then for two months because I tried to end my life. It was one of the lowest periods of my life. I couldn’t bring myself to do anything. Showering didn’t matter. I gained a ton of weight from the meds I was put on. I started living an almost double life. The life the psychiatrists wanted to see and who I really was at home, when I was by myself. Hopelessness was rampant and totally lost on me. I can’t say that I got better. I just got better at hiding from myself, to keep the darkness at a minimum so I wouldn’t be committed at the age of 19 to a state hospital. Even then the façade I built was hard to put down. I just did what I was told to do and when I felt like acting on my feelings of suicide, I told my therapist or psychiatrist, which inevitably led to another hospitalization. But the hospitals in the 1990s were different than they are today. Today they are nothing but holding pens. Two maybe three days you are in and then you are out. If you need more help and have an outpatient therapist, you see them. You don’t need to be in. Maybe you stay for a week or two. But never more than that. Insurance won’t pay for it. And you don’t really get “treated”. You are watched 24/7 to make sure you don’t harm yourself. You might find a “treatment team” that listens but that is ALL THEY DO. They don’t help you in what you came in for. That is for you and your outpatient therapist to work out. If you don’t have one, you might get referred to someone. I’ve never been in that situation so not sure how that works.

I have lost faith that my illness is “treatable”. Seems no matter what I do, I end up depressed or just stay depressed. I am okay with that. I’ve known for a while that there is no longer an antidepressant out there for me. I am grateful my mood stabilizer still works. I just hope that it does fuck up my sodium levels and I need to some off it. Then I will be really screwed. In that sense, I still take my meds because they help. I no longer have commanding voices every day and the accompanying paranoia and delusions. I have to take a med for that every day. But therapy is still elusive. I honestly don’t know if it helps. Talking with someone honestly, like writing this blog, has been useful. Sometimes it feels good to talk to my therapist and leave knowing that someone understands, even if he thinks I am crazy. He said that he is “taking my lead”, which I am not sure about but it is a learning curve like anything else. And I will stress again, that if you aren’t comfortable with the person you are talking to, if they make you uncomfortable or just not getting it, find someone else. There are a lot of different therapists out there. A lot of different degrees as well (but all should be licensed by the state you are in, if they aren’t, I wouldn’t see them). It will take some time to know if they fit with you. The average is about 3 or 4 sessions. Any more than that might be a waste of time if there is no connection.

suicidal turmoil

Suicidal turmoil

***note this is just talk. No action. Just expression of feelings of suicide. If this bothers you, do not read***

My mood has been all over the place today. Last night I was feeling really suicidal. I was exhausted after a chat and wanted to sleep but my thoughts wouldn’t let me rest peacefully. I wanted to email my psychiatrist but I couldn’t come up with the words as my exhaustion out ranked my thought process. Eventually, I did find sleep.

I woke up in the middle of the night because of pain. I took my pain meds, made note of the time, and then went back to sleep. I woke up before my med alarm as I had to use the bathroom. I decided to stay up because I knew that if I went back to sleep, I’d feel like shit.

I got hungry and so made breakfast. I then had time to catch the bus, even though it was an hour earlier than I wanted to go to the square. Oh well. I took my time getting dressed. It was cool out so I had to switch things to my jeans from my shorts. I decided to wear a long sleeve T shirt rather than a sweatshirt. I figure it would be light and if I got hot, I could take it off. It was a beautiful day out. My pain was there but it was manageable. I got to Starbucks and had my espresso. Then I got my journal out and started writing as I wanted to keep it updated with what happened with my appt with the pain doc.

As I was writing, my mind kept going to suicidal thoughts. I wanted to write some more about suicide but I didn’t know what to write. It kept forming in my head. I looked in my bag for a notebook or notepad and there wasn’t one. GAH! Seriously??? I had bought a million notebooks and notepads and this bag was “empty”??? Guess I was off to Bob Slate in Harvard Square to get my favorite kind. I wrote down some more things in my journal and then went to get my med scripts before going to Harvard.

I got to Harvard and the place had change. I don’t remember the last time I was there. The newspaper stand had closed and it kind of changed the whole place. There was a new CVS next to the bank, which was also new. It was a jewelry place before. Starbucks was besides it. There was still construction going on in front of the Au Bon Pain. I still have no clue what they are doing. The construction has been going on for a couple years now. I went to Bob’s and got two notebooks. I only needed one but the other one was a composition type and was for quick notes. I thought it was cool so I bought it. I stayed away from the pen aisle but talked with the guy at the pen desk about refills. There are a couple of pens where I want black ink as they have blue ink right now. The lady became insistent that I bring in the pen to make sure I buy the right one. I am not a naïve pen person but thought it a good idea to do so. I asked what the price range for them were and she said $5 and up. I said I would be back. I’ll probably go Friday before my psychiatrist’s appointment.

I started walking down Mass Ave, not sure if I wanted to catch the bus down to my therapist’s office or just walk there. I got to the corner where there were some benches and sat down for a bit to drink some water. My bladder was telling me it had to go so I waited a little more, just taking in the surroundings and nice weather. I miss being in that part of town so much. It was like going down memory lane. I just started walking toward my therapist’s office. It was farther than I thought it was. I kind of figured that as the numbers were higher at Harvard than the other train station I usually get off. That part of Mass Ave had changed a lot. There was an Indian buffet restaurant, a Domino’s, a Dunkin Donuts. It was amazing to see all these new businesses.

By the time I reached my therapist’s office, I had walked off my suicidal writing energy. I went up to the floor and used the bathroom, then sat in the waiting room for an hour. I played on my phone for a bit and then I took out my journal to write some more. I tried to remember what I wanted to write about but nothing was coming to me. The bug had worn off. I wish I could walk off those feeling whenever ever they occurred. It would be a huge help to me but I know that might not always work due to pain.

I told my therapist right away about my suicidality and how my week went. A lot of stuff was stirred up. I forgot how much my PTSD was flared because of what happened in PT and then with the pain that activated the Cauda Equina Syndrome memories and surgeries, relearning to walk, etc. We talked about it and he listened to my suicidal ramblings. He didn’t ask if I was safe, didn’t get me off topic with plans or crisis stuff. He just listened and inputted his thoughts when I had finished. He does want me to see him twice a week just to have someone to talk to. He thinks I am too isolated. I explored it a little bit and I told him that was scary to me. I don’t know why. He playfully said that he shaves down the horns. LOL I told him I would think about it and let him know next week. I told him I would be on the new pain medicine and hope that would calm down flares and help me regain some things that I have lost.

When I got home and was thinking over the session, I wanted to cry. I never had a therapist that listened to my suicidal thoughts, plans, and other stuff before, in detail. I felt good about it and it made me feel better knowing I had someone to talk to about this stuff, the hardest stuff I can possibly talk about. He told me he wouldn’t be able to stop me unless I was telling him right then and there I was going to end my life after I left his office. It is Massachusetts law to protect someone from themselves or others. He didn’t give me an ultimatum, a do this or else scenario. I was appreciative because I never had that before. I never talked about how much I was feeling about suicide because safety was always first and foremost. Then add in a therapist’s anxiety and the whole thoughts about why you are suicidal are lost, never to be spoken about. For 27 years, no one heard me out after I said the “S” word. It was like the why are you suicidal didn’t matter and containment was more important. By then, the session was over and you were more frustrated because you were in this bind where you promised if you were going to act on your feelings, this and that had to happen and if it didn’t, you were on your way to the hospital to be admitted for a few days or more.

This is where suicide prevention gets mucky. You have a suicidal person and instead of listening to what they are going through that is making them think about ending their lives, they need to “prove” they are safe when they walk out that door until the next session with the therapist or psychiatrist. The client/patient may get angry they are being put in a bind and not heard. This has happened my entire suicidal career. Now I have someone that cares about me, wants to listen to me, and knows that if I really want to end my life, there is nothing he can do to really stop me. He is the perfect therapist for me and it is scaring me because I am expecting metaphorical handcuffs on my thoughts but they aren’t coming. I am free to talk about suicide as long as I don’t act on these feelings. It is freeing. It is validating. It is helpful. And I am grateful that I have someone like this.

I don’t know if I can see him twice a week because financially, that will be double the copay a month. Not to say that I will be able to make every session because I can’t always do that. We talked about that too. He understands that I have a chronic health condition that makes going out impossible some days. But he still wants to help me. He isn’t going to slam the door or give me an ultimatum saying I need to see him every week or else, which was what I was fearful about. He is a laid back therapist and I like this. I have to admit that my suicidologist instincts about him not using CAMS or some other EBP was freaking me out. How could I talk to him if he wasn’t going to measure the level of suicidality on a piece of paper? But I realized today, you don’t need that stuff to make suicide prevention/intervention happen. You just *need to talk*.

in a hopeless state of mind

In a hopeless state of mind

I can’t sleep because of pain and too much on my mind. I keep reading people’s messages about the two people that died by suicide this week and the CDC supposed data that suicide is increasing. I don’t trust the CDC anymore because it fudged data just to push an agenda that hurt people like me with chronic pain.

Some of the messages I read concerned helplines. Do people think that talking with someone for five minutes can help a lifetime of anguish? Probably not. Can it bring enough hope so that person can see to tomorrow? Maybe.

The past few months I have wrestled and anguished with my own thoughts of death. Hell, the beginning of the week, I was tormented with psychache, spoke about it on social media, and then was reported. In the email from Twitter, it said that I could speak to a hotline and there are resources. I deleted the email. What it comes down to, is whether I seek help or not. My choice, really. No one else’s to make. Just like you, reading this. You don’t have to read my blog. No one is holding a gun to head saying to read Midnight Demon. We all have battles that we face, some bigger than others but that doesn’t make them any less of a battle. It could be drugs, alcohol, depression, suicide, mania, voices, paranoia, etc. Some times someone feels too good to get help. Some times someone feels too bad to get help. Others may not think they are worthy or are too afraid what others might think of them if they seek help.

If you have a problem, whatever it is, someone else might have it too. You are not alone. There are people who have alcohol issues, mania issues, depression, trauma, sexual abuse, physical abuse, etc. and live to face another day though they may not want to. Some people, like me, think of suicide often. And that is really scary to some people, so much so they think by reporting them or calling the cops on them is the answer. But let me tell you what happens when you don’t face that person and ask, how can I help or if you need to talk I am here. It shuts them down. That was their one chance of opening up these vulnerable feelings and you just slammed the door, possibly forever, of them ever talking about their dark side ever again. Reporting does not help. I got an email with a hotline and a link to a resource. Did I use it? No, I deleted it. Someone once reported my online activities to the police. The local cops came and scared the crap out of my aunt and pissed me the fuck off. You think I am going to write in my blog the same way again? Fuck no. And why? Because of people like you who are too stupid to understand someone else’s pain and despair. To sit with it and deal with it rather than throwing it at someone else because you can’t be the better person.

I may end my life one day and sadly, even though I talk about it on my blog, you will never know about it because of this one person that sent cops to my door one morning a few years ago. It shuts people down. So I understand why Kate Spade didn’t seek help. She was afraid. I can’t say anything about the other guy. I never heard of him until he died a couple days after Kate. Would either of them have called a hotline? Would either of them have opened the link to the resources that were provided to them? Probably not. Their battle was theirs alone. Their decision was theirs to make. I understand it because I have lived it time and time again. In one of the legal pads I was trying to find to write this down on, I came across a story I wrote that I later published. It is also on my blog (I think). It was about a night where I was in so much pain, I wanted to end my life. And though I had promised my therapist and psychiatrist that I would call them should I feel like ending my life, I didn’t. I had hotlines to call. I had coping skills to use. Instead I wanted to end my life right there and then because of the agony of my foot and ankle but because I couldn’t walk three friggen feet to my bureau, 36 inches away from me to get more pills to take to end my life, it saved me. I woke up and wondered what I did. I will never forget that fear and the shame I felt. I was scared to tell my therapist and psychiatrist what I went through. Terrified that I would be once again be on the psych unit of some hospital never to breathe fresh air again.

Lately, I have been saying, Always be kind. You never know who might need it and is depending on it to survive another day. If you are still reading this and not dialing 911, reach out in other ways. Call that friend you haven’t spoke to in a while that seemed to have stopped posting on social media. Or that friend that was supposed to go to a cookout but didn’t show up. They just might need to know that someone other than the demons in their head care for them. And be kind and non-judgmental. Ask them if they need help with something that is important to them. They might not tell you everything or they might not even want to talk, just listen. Sit with their darkness. It will mean the world to them.