I’m on the fence about posting this. It’s intensely personal, and not just for me. Trigger warning for suicide.
My friend, Ruby* has tried to kill herself twice in the past week. It is looking like this second time she will succeed. She confided in me about her anxiety and depression often, maybe because I am so open about my own experiences, and am also fairly knowledgeable about psychotropic medications, ( having been on my fair share until I found the one that helped me the best. ) But she also confided in a lot of people, so I think she just really, really wanted help getting better. I knew she had serious problems and I tried to help her as much as I knew how, but she needed the kind of help only a good psychiatrist could provide…and I’m not sure she EVER had one of those
What’s worse is, although I am not getting reports directly from her family, I have been speaking with a mutual friend and the more I learn about the circumstances surrounding this whole thing, the more angry and sad I feel. She was let down you see. In my opinion, she was let down by almost every one of her medical care professionals, and at least some of her “acquaintances,” (namely one or two shitty people who were emotionally manipulative and bad for her.) One facility told her that if she refused to take medications (she was terrified of side effects), they couldn’t help her and she should just go home. I won’t go into any more detail, because even though I changed her name to protect her and her family, and even though she has her own public blog where she recounted in heart-breaking detail, her trauma, it doesn’t feel like it’s my place to tell too much. One thing that does bear mentioning though is that her second suicide attempt occurred while she was IN the hospital following the first attempt. To say someone screwed up doesn’t even begin to cover it.
Currently, as of the last update I received, she had brain damage that it is pretty much guaranteed to be fatal when she comes off life support.
My heart breaks. For the hopes she had and the gentle soul she was, and the way her pain was answered with skepticism and ambivalence. I am horrified to say I actually saw this coming…and yet in many ways I still am in shock. Is this really happening?
I’m so sorry we couldn’t help you more, Ruby. I’m so, so sorry. I’m sorry if, even knowing what I do about anxiety I was ever less than patient with you. I just hope wherever you are, your pain is over.
One last thing before I go. It’s easy to say “if you need someone to talk to call me,” but I think it is much harder for people in dark places to do that, and a lot of them don’t want to burden us with their pain. Even worse is when the person they call can’t really relieve their pain, at least not for long. But I will say it anyway, if any of my friends need someone to talk to, I’m here.