life after suicide

Reflections of suicide

The pain I feel when the one I love is hurting so much emotionally and mentally that they cannot hear it and that you cannot help.

The worry when calling home from work and getting no reply. The feeling of dread that he has attempted suicide again.

Telling myself I can’t keep rushing home because more often than not there’s a logical reason.

Trying to keep calm, not panicking.

Then that last traumatic year as his pain never recedes, there’s no relief for him and he starts to shut down totally.

The day I had just got on the bus home from work when I get a call saying “I’ve taken an overdose, it isn’t working”

The day I hear the dogs barking in the garage and open the door to find him unconscious on the sofa having taken an overdose again – my warning that the end was near. I knew it then although his words afterwards were “It was a mistake. I won’t ever do it again, it hurts you too much.”

The last kiss goodbye as I left the house for a rare Saturday morning in town with a friend.

The worry as I kept calling but getting no reply. Finally that last conversation when he says he isn’t well this morning and won’t join me for lunch.

Opening the front door and seeing him, not hanging there thank God, but sitting with the sash of my dressing gown round his neck.My offer to come straight home declined yet as I sit with my friend and chat over coffee, I am worried and cannot concentrate on our time together so I leave early. Willing the bus to move faster, stop less, just to get home.

He is asleep I think, another cry for help. But I can’t wake him and immediately I realise he has left our world.

I’m in shock

I’m devastated

Yet I know he is finally out of the emotional and mental pain he had suffered most of his life, that had become too hard to bear.

They want me to give him mouth to mouth. I can’t, I say but they don’t understand. I can’t because he is out of pain. I can’t because I must let him go. It’s his time to leave. His suffering is over.

Yet when the paramedic arrives and tries to resuscitate him, the older one realises I don’t want them too, yet when he asks if I want them to stop, I just can‘t get the words out. I can’t say yes.

So gently he rephrases his question, to help me give the answer I want.

And that is it.

I have nobody to be with me, to support me.

Mental health isolates not just the sufferer but the family too.

The police arrive, the lady from the coroner’s office. People are everywhere it seems.

“Who can we contact to come and be with you?”

“Nobody” I say

Finally its late afternoon, they leave. The dark night stretches relentlessly before me.

My dogs are anxious, worried. Of course they don’t understand but they know they need to be with me. They stay close, anxious faces looking to me for reassurance that I really don’t have the strength to give.

It’s just me now.

The next day is Sunday. The lady from the coroner’s office calls to see if I’m OK. That small but amazingly kind gesture is the key to my first tears.

Tears of grief, tears of sorrow, tears of isolation and aloneness, tears that I cannot share with anyone what has happened. Tears for what is no longer, tears for all that is lost, tears for my soulmate and the love of my life.

 

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NOTE: I watched a recent programme on BBC Life After Suicide which explored what drives people to suicide, I made some notes thinking that I needed to write something to show the side where one lives with the worry of someone who has attempted suicide many times, explaining the differences of those experiences with the ones in the TV programme, which had focused on unexpected suicides. However, the next evening the Universe decided that the above was needed to help others and work towards breaking the stigma around suicide. The words and style were channelled to me – and those who are spiritual will understand that. For others that means that although the emotions and thoughts what I had experienced and felt at the time, the words tumbled onto the paper and I could barely write fast enough to get them down . I haven’t changed anything that was given to me by my guides but they are very much the emotions and thoughts that I had to work through in the earlier years. Now, over six years on, I find joy in the memories I have. Yes sometimes sadness jumps up unexpectedly but anyone who has lost a partner or someone very close to them knows that is just as it should be. Just allow that sadness to come and be kind to yourself.

 

You can read more about how I created a new life in my article on Starting Afresh – My Personal Journey

Louise Clare works from her home in Eastbourne, East Sussex as the healing space there is truly magical and relaxing.