Families are quite unaware of what leads their loved one(s) to consider suicide. Suicidal ideation is the act of entertaining thoughts of taking your life. For the most part, depression alone can leave a detrimental mark on the psyche.
It’s not so long ago that I was entertaining those thoughts. I don’t think I was in imminent danger, most of the time, but I did have those days. I also had a plan for my future. I gave myself one year to make my life better. One year until I turn 50. One year or I’ll jump off the Sunshine Skyway Bridge. Ironic name, isn’t it. (An ultimatum, just like the one my aunt gave me, no contact with the family until you straighten up your life).
Guess I’m not straightened up enough because she never answered my letter I sent this year. Yes, it’s been over 20 years since I’ve talked to her, or the rest of my family. Am I to blame? I don’t think so. After all, I was just doing as I was told. I’m such a good girl.
There is actually a website devoted to the “Skyway Jumpers”, www.skywaybridge.com
The Sunshine Skyway Bridge.
On the west coast of florida, at the mouth of Tampa Bay,
is the attraction of choice for many contemplating life’s self end.
it’s the #4 suicide bridge in the country, #1 east of California.
So far this year there have been (2013) 6 suicides, 13 possible, 2 survivors, 4 saves.
latest jump: 08.26.13 • *possible jump: 09.03.13 • save: 06.08.13
According to the St. Petersburg Times: “anyone who jumps from a point close to the center of the bridge, hits the water in about 3.5 seconds at about 75 mph. the impact usually breaks bones and ruptures organs. some live for minutes before they drown”.
Back to my story.
Everything I read about suicide is true. The sad part for me was that either no one knew how I felt, or no one cared enough. It’s not as though I didn’t try to express how I was feeling. Ok, maybe I didn’t use the word “suicide”, but it was evident I was pretty depressed. At least I thought so. But people around me now say they knew I was really depressed. Maybe they didn’t know to what extent.
Irregardless, no one suggested for me to seek help. In fact when I mentioned that I was thinking of seeking a psychiatrist I was met with strange looks. I believe, evidentiary of the social stigma of mental illness. So, these people think they can fix everything themselves. Great! Not me. I’m almost 50 and I haven’t straightened this shit out.
Now I’m in therapy, with a diagnosis of MDD and PTSD. It feels good to talk to someone who understands my feelings and can help me figure them out.
I’m glad I decided to seek help. Glad I’m in therapy. I’m still depressed but at least I don’t want to jump off the Skyway Bridge.
There’s still hope!
I’m a survivor!!