I have considered committing suicide. And, like, before you ask: no, not currently; I won’t say “I’m fine” but I’m close to normal, for me. The amount of self-loathing I’ve been feeling recently is kind of high, but it’s nothing compared to how I felt, say, after my first semester of college, which is the first time I extensively thought about killing myself.
I always tell people I flunked out of Ohio State. What really happened is I didn’t pay for my second semester of classes or room & board. The way I was supposed to pay for it was this: I printed out a voucher from my computer, I brought it to the financial aid office(which, coincidentally, was in the same building as my dorm), and I gave it to a person there, and my bill was paid. What happened was is: I printed out a voucher from my computer, placed it on the desk, and left it there for weeks, until the day they called on a Wednesday and said I had to move out by Friday night.
I couldn’t bring myself to bring that paper to the financial aid office, because the idea of talking to strangers was terrifying. The idea of committing to being in this hellscape where everything hurt all the time and no one knew me enough for me to confide in them or yell at them or cry in front of them, the idea of being there for another fifteen weeks was unbearable. So I shut down, and was barely functional for weeks, and when I got the call I laid in bed for hours then emailed my mother and told her that I got kicked out and I was sorry for being a failure.
That Wednesday, I laid in bed thinking about what I should do. I thought maybe I should have died as a kid, before I started screwing up everything. I thought about how my parents would be disappointed in me because I was a failure, how I didn’t deserve any of the love or even tolerance I received from them. I wished I could just will myself out existence. I thought about running away, just leaving and living in downtown Columbus and never seeing anyone who knew me again. Maybe I could find a little job and live in a shithole apartment and meet people who didn’t know I was broken and terrible and worthless, and maybe that would somehow make me not broken and terrible and worthless.
Then I thought, hey, maybe I wouldn’t find a job. Maybe I would just get beaten up or robbed or killed. Maybe the winter would get colder and I’d die of exposure. Maybe I’d get sick and not be able to go to a doctor and I’d die. And I thought, well, maybe that’d be okay. Maybe it’s better if I just do that.
I never wanted to kill myself in a way my parents would know about, because I knew it would kill my mom. She’d think she was a bad mother and it was her fault and I don’t think she could take it. I thought about running away and burning up my body so they couldn’t identify it, so they wouldn’t know it was me. I thought about walking around downtown at night, hoping someone would mug me and I could get them to kill me. I thought about a lot of despicable shit, and some of it still makes me feel awful for even considering it.
As I laid there, trying to work out the ideal suicide, I started to get angry. If I didn’t have family, I wouldn’t have to work this hard to kill myself. If I didn’t have people whose feelings I cared about, I wouldn’t have to pre-plan all this shit just to protect them. I resented anyone who ever cared about me, because their feelings were preventing me from doing what I wanted. It wasn’t fair.
After I came home, I mostly just slept a lot. My friends didn’t know I was home for weeks, because I didn’t leave my room. (Also this was before cell phones were a thing every person had, so I wasn’t constantly available to every person who knew a string of seven numbers.) I eventually tried to go back to school, and basically ever since I have been hovering between failing out and doing passably. Nearly every course I have completed has resulted in an A or B, but I don’t complete a lot of courses. Every few terms, I fall into the same pit that I did at Ohio State. And I think about it. I think about running away and dying. And I get mad because the people around me will be upset if I die. And it’s never this wonderful, life-affirming thing; it’s more like, “if these people weren’t so stupid, they would see the burden I am. If they thought about it logically, they would know I am right and what I am doing is an act of love for them.” Because when I’m depressed, my heart and mind tell me that I am overall negatively affecting the world, and even if I do some good, the bad overtakes it, and if I didn’t exist the world would be better.
I don’t know if there will ever be a point where I never think about suicide again, even if I don’t really consider it as an option. After the first time, it kind of sticks with you, even if it is only an echo of the initial terrible urge.
So, like, when someone who is mentally ill starts trying to make enemies, it reminds me of how mad I was that my feelings for people wouldn’t let me die. When I hear about someone who is telling everyone to stop interacting with them, stop liking them, stop remembering them, it sounds like someone trying to figure out how to finally take care of things. And it makes me sad and scared, because the little terrible part of my brain that is a traitor thinks, “hey, watch this, maybe it IS possible to really do it.”