Shattering The Illusion of All Alone: Depression, Suicide, and Why The World (Not You) is Effing Insane

on February 16, 2012 | in Featured, Life in General | by

On my wall hangs a picture, a constant daily reminder of the man who once broke my heart to the core.

It wasn’t the kind of heartbreak that comes from a bad breakup or a fight, nor was it the kind I’d look back on later and laugh at — no, it wasn’t that kind of heartbreak, although I’d had that kind too.

Instead it was the kind of heartbreak that can never be reversed, the kind that even now burdens me with heartache and grief and guilt.

A year ago to the day, my ex boyfriend and good friend William took his last breath of precious air as he leapt from the heights of a Portland bridge.

A year ago to the day, he broke my heart forever.

For eight years I’d known him, and known him better than I’d known anyone else. In all our three years of dating and five years of friendship, I’d never imagined that I’d one day be left standing here, staring at a picture of a man who once was.

And yet each day I am. Each day I awaken and his image is there reflecting back at me, holding the heart-wrenching inscription that makes it all real:

William Matthew Pope

December 30, 1983 – February 16, 2011

Full of life, full of promise, full of love: William Matthew Pope


The thought that a man so precious — so unbelievably worthy and loved — could’ve felt so alone that he’d decide to take his own life?

That thought kills me to this day.

* * *

In honor of Will, today’s post was written for you.

It doesn’t matter whether or not you’ve struggled with depression or suicidal thoughts; this post is still for you. It doesn’t matter if you’ve ever uttered the words, whether out loud or inside your soul, “I want to die. Help me. Help me, God.”

No matter what, this post is for every single one of us. Every. single. one. It’s for you and for me, for he and for she. It’s for humankind; it’s for all of us. It’s for all of us because no matter who we are, we’ve all been trapped in an insane asylum our whole lives.

Today, it’s time to break out.


Never before have we lived in a world with so many people together-all-alone.

You matter, and you matter tremendously. You are not alone in your pain, and you never have been.

The problem? The problem isn’t you. The problem is that we live in a world of insanity, and it’s killing us all.

Yeah, you heard me right: We’re LIVING IN AN INSANE ASYLUM in which we all feel as if we’re the only ones struggling, as if we’re the only ones living a silent lie and plastering on a fake smile for the world to see.

But we’re not.

We’re not the only ones struggling and we’re not the only ones feeling painfully alone in the crowd. THAT is what’s so ridiculously insane about it all. Somehow, we’ve become a mass-of-people-all-alone.

This makes me ridiculously angry and heartbroken.

Today, I want you to meet three people who are TEARING down the world of fake and driving it to extinction, who are living and breathing The Declaration of Real. It doesn’t take a miracle to change things; it starts with something as simple as courage and vulnerability and truth. And the truth, my friends, is what will set us free…

Speaking honestly and openly about who we and about our experiences (good and bad) is the ultimate act of courage.

– Brené Brown

.D O W N  F R O M  T H E  L E D G E.

I first came across “Down From the Ledge’s” blog after she left a comment on one of my posts awhile back. Her writing is raw, real, & powerful in its truth. In exposing her own truth, Down From the Ledge sets others free.

“Back from the brink of suicide….and coming up for air. I feel like I have been holding my breath underwater for the last 3 years, lost in the murky waters of my own polluted world, struggling to break the surface of life again. Recently broke 30. Single and not looking. Unemployed and looking. Disillusioned and seeking. MISSION: Busting open the taboo surrounding suicide. Silence kills.

If you bring forth what is within you, what you bring forth will save you. If you do not bring forth what is within you, what you do not bring forth will destroy you.

In a post this past December, Down From the Ledge exposed her utter weariness, her tiredness and longing and pain:

“It’s been a hard day. A hard week. And it’s not over yet. 

2 more days of Christmas. One more week of holidays. One more year to kiss goodbye in which I didn’t “pull myself up by the bootstraps” and “get back on the horse” and “take the bull by the horns” and all those other bullsh*t anti-motivators that mysteriously haven’t rescued me from my chosen (right?) anguish. 

Yeah, it’s one of those days. There’s no place to go, no book to read, no show to watch, no project to undertake … that could sufficiently distract me from the pain that I’m feeling.

If I were a drug addict, I’d be high as a kite right now, but I’m too chickensh*t to go that hardcore.

So I sit with it.

Despair creeps in through the cracks, the same ones hope is seeping out of.

It might have something to do with the seventy-ninth (if I want to exaggerate I’ll f***ing exaggerate) job I couldn’t make it at, and the ensuing disgust with myself for adding to my quit-list this week.

It might have something to do with my refusal to participate in family events this holiday season, and my rejection of *things* in place of love. 

You aren’t supposed to be weary at 30, are you? I mean, really. I’m not talking about exhaustion; that was 5 years ago when I was 25 going on 40, dead weight dragging through the days. 

I’m weary of 1-being me and 2-hating me.

I’m weary of life, and the suffocating alienation of being unseen. And yet, in premise, invisibility sounds so liberating…

I’m weary of reaching out to people who don’t reach back, though I know it is my very nature to give the most to people who are incapable of giving another human being what they need.

I’m tired of people who don’t try, who don’t change, who don’t care. They drain my soul.

I’M tired of trying, of changing mySELF, of caring. It drains my soul even more.

I’m tired of the questions-
The demands-
The requirements of life-
Where will I go and what will I do and who will I be and what is the point?

Yeah. Weary.”

Down From the Ledge is a survivor, and she brings more truth than she knows. The truth she hits on is this: We don’t need anyone to sugarcoat our experiences. We don’t need the “wisdom” of the insane asylum, the fruitless attempts at fixing and stuffing and pushing away.

Our pain — our pain is real. We can’t always solve it, and we don’t always need to. What we do need, what we long for intensely at our cores, is simply for someone to be here in this with us. What we seek is the experience of being experienced, the unknown comfort of being truly known. What we seek is to be held absolutely, unconditionally, completely, even (especially) in the depths of our despair.

My only wish it that one day we’ll all come to see that this has always been.

down from the ledge… postcards from the edge of suicide

.J E N N Y  L A W S O N.

Jenny Lawson, aka The Bloggess, is a ridiculously beautiful soul. Her Red Dress Project? Inspiring. Her struggle with rheumatoid arthritis? I’ve lived it. A few months back, Jenny shared her story of battling depression on the To Write Love on Her Arms blog. In a post aptly titled “The Fight Goes On” , Jenny gives others the ultimate gift: the gift of knowing that they are not alone, and the courage to continue fighting and to continue surviving (and celebrating) each day:

“Depression can be crippling, and deadly. I’m lucky that it’s a rare thing for me, and that I have a support system to lean on.

I’m lucky that I’ve learned that depression lies to you, and that you should never listen to it, in spite of how persuasive it is at the time.

When cancer sufferers fight, recover, and go into remission we laud their bravery. We call them survivors. Because they are.

When depression sufferers fight, recover and go into remission we seldom even know, simply because so many suffer in the dark…ashamed to admit something they see as a personal weakness…afraid that people will worry, and more afraid that they won’t. We find ourselves unable to do anything but cling to the couch and force ourselves to breathe.


Regardless, Jenny chooses to celebrate.

“I celebrate the fact that each time we go through this, we get a little stronger. We learn new tricks on the battlefield. We learn them in terrible ways, but we use them. We don’t struggle in vain.

We win.

We are alive.”

Love this. Love Jenny — for her strength and her courage and her soul. For being who she is.  ♥

To Write Love on Her Arms: The Fight Goes On

.J A K E.

I met Jake on Facebook when he became a reader of my blog, which had been recommended to him by a past professor of mine at Gonzaga University, Kent Hoffman. Both Jake and I had taken courses from Kent that blended theories from psychology and intimacy and spirituality, courses that have drastically altered the paths of both our lives.

Awhile back, I was honored and privileged to have Jake share his story with me. Today, with Jake’s permission, I’m sharing it with you.

“I was 20, just starting my second year at the University of Washington. I had a wonderful family, was getting good grades, and a ton of “friends” that all partied hard. College is supposed to be the best years of our lives, right? I was finally independent, free, and in control! So why did I feel so alone, broken, and lost?

The more I partied with my “friends” the more I began to think, are these really people who care about me? Love me? Or are they more interested in having a beer pong partner for the next game? Things that once were enjoyable to me, started to be so less and less. I withdrew further, I stopped going to class, and stopped hanging out with people. What’s the point? No one can understand what I’m going through. No one knows how completely and utterly alone, afraid, and tired I am. At some point I just said fuck it, no one loves me and I am not worthy of your love. That winter I tried to kill myself. I couldn’t do it. I called me mom crying, told her what happened and came home to Spokane. I beat myself for not being able to do it, somehow I wasn’t man enough or strong enough to do it. I was still as broken as before.

I finished my undergraduate at Gonzaga and met Kent Hoffman while finishing my psychology degree there. His two classes became my therapy sessions in a very literal sense. One day we talked about the toxicity of normalcy. That we are all to often too afraid to show our dreams, fears, hopes, and weakness to one another. It isn’t cool. Guys need to be tough. Weakness is a character flaw. I shared the story of my suicide attempt with the class for the first time outside of my immediate family. If someone had been there to tell me it’s ok, I’m lonely too. I feel lost and weak. I want to be loved. You’re not the only one feeling like this. It is in our shared vulnerability that we find real strength.” 

Your pain, your reality is real. It is in this suffering, in our great weakness that we find we are human. When we connect to the suffering of others, we find compassion and intimacy. In this shared vulnerability we heal. We learn to love and to be loved.

I couldn’t have said it any better than this. Shared vulnerability… compassion… healing… love. My deepest gratitude to Jake for sharing his story today.


With everything in my heart, I hope you come to know this reality:

You are not alone (& you never have been).

You matter — you matter deeply, tremendously, unimaginably.

Without you, the world would be incomplete.

Even if you can only come to know this with the smallest, tiniest piece of your being – even with just the thinnest thread of who you are – grab hold of it as tightly as you can.

Even if you feel you have no strength left, grab ahold now, and even if it takes everything inside of you, please don’t let go. Promise me you’ll stay, if only to prove that things can change, that the world doesn’t have to be this way, to prove the insanity of the world WRONG.

Because it’s time, guys.

It’s time to break free of this freaking insane asylum; it’s time to eschew this illusion of all-alone.

Right here in the midst of our pain, in this soft spot of our shared vulnerability, we can come to find a strength and a love and a comfort that we hadn’t known was there.

Right here in the center of what’s broken, there is unbreakable strength.

There is a shared community here, a hidden holding, if only we can allow it.

# # #

Have a hug:

LOVE this website of virtual hugs; I guarantee you’ll feel better after getting hugged by all these wonderful people!:  >>>The Nicest Place on the Internet<<< (Thanks Josh Lipovetsky for sharing this with me!)

Get help now:

If this is an emergency, or if you are worried that you or someone you know may be at risk for suicide, please call your local authorities (911), contact a mental health professional, or call and talk to someone at 1-800-SUICIDE.

Befrienders Worldwide: We work worldwide to provide emotional support, and reduce suicide. We listen to people who are in distress. We don’t judge them or tell them what to do – we listen. Visit now. IMAlive is a live online crisis network that uses instant messaging to respond to people in crisis. People need a safe place to go 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Chat now.

Disclaimer: The diagnosis and treatment of depression and other psychiatric disorders requires a trained medical professional. Information contained in this website reflects the opinions and experiences of the author, and is intended for discussion purposes only. It should NOT be used as a substitute for professional diagnosis and treatment of any medical/psychiatric disorders. Please consult a medical professional if the information here leads you to believe you or someone you know may be depressed or suicidal.

[Image by victoriapeckham]

“Help me. I want to die. How to die.”

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  • Alex

    You’re an amazing writer. Add yourself to that list because you’re extremely inspirational and I love reading your posts. It’s like you take my very thoughts and put them on paper, so eloquently at that. Suicide has become such an overlooked issue. SO many young people take their own lives and it absolutely breaks my heart. I’d wish they’d have read an article like yours. You do a lot of good and I hope you have the opportunity to touch a lot of lives!

    • Thank you, Alex. My hope is that many of them can and WILL read an article like this, and more importantly, that we can all come together to support each other, online & off, and to make the reality felt that we are NOT alone. We all have the potential to touch lives every day <3

  • Therese, what an important and beautiful post. I’m so sorry you lost someone so important to you in such a difficult way. My husband lost his cousin to suicide. My stepmom lost her brother the same way. It’s such a tragedy and not talked about enough, in my opinion.

    One of the most powerful TED talks I saw was on this subject by JD Schramm: “Break the Silence for Suicide Attempt Survivors.” I highly recommend that one, if you haven’t seen it. It floored me. Just grabbed my heart and squeezed. He says, “People who have made the difficult choice to come back to life need more resources and need our help.” He’s right. You’re right. And thank you for writing about this.

    My blog post today was not about suicide, though I did type the words: “You are not alone. Far from it.” I think that FEELING alone is the easiest path to depression. But the knowledge that we are not, that someone else gets it- even just one person- can be the path out. You are paving that way. The way out into the light. Into the ‘understood.’

    Thanks for sharing the stories you shared here. I’m passing it along. Consider me inspired.

    (Love in the Time of Foreclosure)

    Here’s the link to the JD Schramm TED talk:

    • Thank you, Steph. I will check out the TED talk this weekend; it sounds like something worth watching. YES, feeling alone is at the center of just about everything that anyone struggles with, I think. It’s a massive problem in the world today. “The knowledge that we are not, that someone else gets it- even just one person- can be the path out.”


      • lisa

        I understand how it feels to be alone. Every day, day after day alone. It get unbearable. Suicide always crosses my mind. Who cares, no one.

  • This is so incredibly raw and beautiful. Thank you for honesty, for love, for hope. I spent years battling major depression and suicidal thoughts, and had I not had a supportive group of friends, I would have attempted. While dark days are a part of my life, I hold onto the hope that you have presented here today–this world is messed up, but we are all broken, and together, we can create safe places to live and thrive, even when the pain threatens to overwhelm us. Much love. <3

    • “This world is messed up, but we are all broken, and together, we can create safe places to live and thrive, even when the pain threatens to overwhelm us.”

      Yes, yes, yes.


  • I’m a bit speechless. Raw. Powerful. Well done.

  • Whoa. Thank You

  • Beautiful post. Thanks for sharing.

  • Julia

    this came at a very appropriate time for me. and i’m very sorry for your loss. thank you for this post.

    • Thank you, Julia. I’m glad this came at just the right time for you <3

  • You are absolutely fantastic. I am very sorry for your loss, but I am grateful that you are keeping William’s memory/soul/story alive.

  • Carly

    I can’t tell you what an amazing post this is, because there are no words. I can’t tell you what amazing timing you had with it, because you wouldn’t believe me if I told you, but I’ve been having terribly depressed thoughts that, yes. Verged on the edge of suicide, or if not that, something incredibly drastic. I can’t tell you how much you’ve helped me, because hopefully you KNOW what a wonder you are and how many people you’ve helped with this post as well as all of your others.

    What I can tell you is, I’m still alive today, and that’s nice, isn’t it? And I have you and people like you to thank for it. Thank you. Infinitely.

    • Carly, I do believe you, and I can only re-emphasize how true every word is that’s been written above: how tremendously you DO matter, how deeply you’re loved, how infinitely precious you are. Thank you for being here, and for being you. If you find yourself verging on the edge, please reach out and ask for help. Please. There are so, so, so many more people than you realize who would do anything to help pull you up from the darkness. Please know this.

      And please know how much it means to me that you’re here now and that you’ll continue to be here. Thank you for that — Just to be here and just to show up as who you are, as simply yourself, is the greatest, most precious gift you can give to the world. Trust me on this.

      I’ve been thinking a lot lately about how I can make “Unlost” meetups happen in “real life” so that we can all have at least a small group of people with whom we can truly be real and truly come to know and to support. The internet is great, but it’s not enough. I hope you’d consider something like this if it could come to be — I think it would be truly transformative for so many people.


  • Lovely.

  • Lovely. Very contemplative, truly raw.

  • Kim

    Such a beautiful post and great way to honor your friend. I’m sorry you lost him, and that he felt so alone in the world. You’re right, we don’t tell the truth in this country, to ourselves or to others, and so many suffer in silence.

  • I love your heart, Therese. The illusion of being alone is nothing but a lie. Heck, I can feel terribly alone in even the most crowded rooms, but I have to remember that it’s a feeling, not a reality. I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the wide gap between being loved and feeling loved. I can be doted upon by friends and family and still feel unloved. It’s insane, and I think our society is to blame.

    You’re changing the world, girl, and I love that :)

    • It’s an interesting question to ponder, isn’t it? I love your questioning and your ability to observe and reflect upon your experience of this gap between being loved and feeling loved. Very well said… very universal.

      The real change happens within all of us :)

  • Something about reading, “I want to die, help me God” set me to bawling uncontrollably. Maybe because of all the times I’ve uttered those words in the past decade, or maybe due to how uncannily true “We live in an insane asylum” seems to sum up the feeling. Or perhaps it was reading of your loss, and your love for a person I was almost like, because it’s not often I really “go there” and think of the wreckage I would’ve left behind.

    What a waste. What a waste it all is, and how unnecessary that we all blame ourselves for being unable to cope with the craziness … like it’s our fault. Maybe the people who think it’s all good and well and normal are the ones who are nuts.

    Kind of sucks having to go back into the false, fake world of people who just don’t understand. But I will hold onto your words, the words of someone who gets it, and know I’m not alone.

    • Not our fault… not anyone else’s fault. Just the craziness of what the world’s become… and yet we can heal it, we are healing it, as we speak.

      Which means that you might some day step out into the world and be surrounded by people who DO understand. In fact, maybe (no, CERTAINLY) you are already surrounded by people who understand (me & all of us here being just a few). ANd maybe you are surrounded by many more who deeply WANT to understand, but who are fighting their own battles. Beneath the surface, they are seeking to be understood themselves.

      Thanks for your honesty… I think that’s one of your greatest gifts, is your ability the speak your truth just as it is.

  • Thank you for your raw sharing of your pain. I am so sorry for your loss and for the loss of everyone who has lost someone to suicide. It’s a particularly difficult loss because of the associated questions–what did I miss? What could I have done differently? Why didn’t I stop it?

    This is why my least favorite word is “should”. It’s a word that needs to be questioned every time it appears. Who says something “should” be a certain way? It’s a word that drives us apart instead of bringing us together. It’s a word that says you don’t measure up. It’s a word of conformity that often leads to despair.

    Value your own thoughts and beliefs. We need them. You matter. You have value just because you exist. Find those who support you and leave the rest no matter who says you “should” keep them in your life. We are humans. We need to connect. It’s how we survive.

    • Couldn’t have said it all better, Lesli…

  • Elizabeth

    I am so sorry for William and his pain and you for your loss and your pain. I spent many a day when I was young telling myself that suicide is the one thing that if I put off today, I can always do tomorrow. And then when tomorrow came if I felt the same way telling myself the same thing.

    All of you, WIlliam, yourself, me, we all have someone who does care whether we are alive or dead – someone who will be destroyed if we choose not to be with them anymore. Maybe only one, but that matters. I genuinely believe you when you throw out there into the universe that you care about all of us so it is possible that for someone you are that one person. Good for your for making yourself someone that cares. I think it matters. Lack of community and genuine caring and our truly insane set of American values have left many people like William feeling alone or not loveable and with no one to turn to.

    Hugs for you on a rough, rough day. You are not alone either.

    • Your hug just made me cry! I guess I did need to hear that, too. Thank you for your heart <3

      Yes, it DOES matter, and we can ALL be that person for someone else. It makes all the difference.

  • I’m really sorry to hear about William Therese. This is so sad, and a hug to you for coping so bravery.

    I could relate to some of the points about feeling alone. I started stuttering when I was 10 and quickly learnt to hide it. For about 11 years I suffered silently. Nobody knew how much anxiety, low self esteem and low self confidence. I remember waking up everyday and thinking of every speaking situation I might have to go into, and avoid everyone. I became so good at hiding my stuttering, even my own family didn’t know anything was wrong until my early twenties. I remember, I went on the Internet during this and found forums, where people who stuttered were talking. I wrote such a depressing story and this kind girl who I met online just recently again, encouraged me to tell my family. I was desperate for help and so I did.

    To all readers of this post a big hug to each of you. As Therese says we are not alone.

    • Hi Hiten,

      Wow… 11 years of anxiety and of trying to hide… what a feeling of aloneness. Hugs to you also! I’m glad you’ve been able to share about your experience and to help others who are struggling come to feel that they aren’t alone, either.

  • Sorry about the loss. I was on the other side. I suppose you told me how my fiance would feel if I had leapt to my end. he pulled me back from the window ledge 2 years ago. i’m not completely through the tunnel but making it. writing helps me. and i’m slowly coming to terms with who i am inside, and being opened about my experience. many people struggle in silence and need our compassion
    Noch Noch

    • Noch Noch,

      I’m infinitely grateful that your fiance pulled you back from the ledge and that you’re still here today to share your gift– yourself, your heart, with the world. It’s a long journey but we’re all here to support each other.

      Much love <3 <3

  • Patriciaboiko

    You are an Angel, Therese to respond so sensitively to those who commented. I knew William when he was a baby and child. He was so full of life, fun and also so sweet. He loved to hold my daughter when she was born. He was so fascinated and kind with a baby. I know you have been a comfort to Will’s family. Thank you for posting.

    • He did love babies… such a kind, fun, spirited young man.


  • Juliaboyle2012

    I’ve been there and understand the loss of a brother via suicide. I still, in some ways, believe it was our fault – not listening – not encouraging him to be who he was made to be. He would ask me why I didn’t speak up for myself more – didn’t i have dreams? In the end, it seems he spoke – and spoke – but no one listened. I think it troublesome to the soul to try to be who you are in the midst of a society that doesn’t believe in truth.

    You are right about insane assylum –

    • “To be nobody-but-yourself — in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else — means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight; and never stop fighting.”

      – ee cummings

      Julia: You absolutely cannot blame yourself, and yet I know similar feelings of guilt. All we can do at this point is do our best to live out the lessons we’ve learned the hard way and hope that perhaps our presence can make a difference for someone who’s still here now.


  • Made me cry. Such an important message.. It’s crazy that there are so many that feel that way, and we all feel totally alone..!? We absolutely have to break the silence and help people feel connected so it doesn’t come to that point of desperation anymore. There’s enough love in the world for everyone with heaps to spare.. Thank you for this x

    • Yes yes yes, there’s more than enough love


  • jan

    Hi, I have read this post before, but it does not seem like I commented. I would like to say it is a very brave post. My best friend committed suicide twenty years ago. Such a incomprehensible thing to do, but in that moment it seemed to make sense to her. She left everyone else with guilt and no her. She did all the right things. She sought help and was taking medication for a long time. There is nothing more to say except I miss her!

    • :-( So sorry to hear about your friend, Jan.

      “And if we are strong enough to be weak enough, we are given a wound that never heals. It is the gift that keeps the heart open.”

      – The Invitation

  • Hi Therese,

    i just came across your blog and this post… what you’ve written is so raw. i’ve spent years in what i call a “fierce fight for my life”– midst the depression, the PTSD, the addictions, the suicide attempts i’ve found hope in organizations like TWLOHA and people like you who refuse to let these demons have the final word. It’s a struggle, we fight every day to stay alive but as a friend of mine says, every day that we’re still here is a day that we win. So, thank you for your courage to write this.

    • Hi Ally, thank you for your thank you. Keep taking it day by day — sending love your way. <3

  • Eva

    This is really exactly what I needed to hear. Thank you for everything and all the people’s stories you got. Truly was all put so beautifully.

  • There’s lots of vague talk about the world being “insane,” but think a major reason for that insanity is “economic growthism” and its mantra of mass production over quality time. Too many things are centered around money, speed and hype, which thwarts the natural need to relax and contemplate the world. Certain people, when overloaded with those unnatural forces, will crack.

    Human overpopulation also contributes to the likelihood of feeling like “just a number” where individuals don’t matter. Do some research on those concepts if you want to put the whole picture together. This is not a tangential issue to modern depression.

  • Kevin Evans

    what bullshit

    • Kevin Evans

      not alone my ass

  • who cares

    what a bunch of garbage !!

  • ndotgw

    The writer of this blog has obviously NEVER called a suicide hotline. They are no help. All they want to know is if you are planning to kill yourself right at that moment and, if you’re not? Well, TS for you because they want you off the line so they can get on to the next person and not help them either. I have called numerous so-called crisis lines, including those listed here, and they are worthless. I have even been passed from one line to another, because it was the “wrong” line. The only line I can recommend is Silent Unity, they will listen and pray for you. Don’t know if the prayer helps, but the people who answer are kindness itself.

    • Hi, thanks for recommending Silent Unity.

      There are no easy answers (for suicide or for anything in life), but I do my best to help and recommend resources in the best way I know how.

      Sending love,


      • ndotgw

        What depressed people need is true connection, not meaningless “help” and worthless platitudes. All that my searching for answers and friendship via the Internet has shown me is that neither can be found there. Plus, while there are support groups for so-called “survivors” of suicide (family and friends of those who have killed themselves) there is not one group anywhere for people who have survived attempts to kill themselves. Not. One. I called someone after attempting suicide and was taken IN HANDCUFFS to a locked-down facility where I was observed but received no counseling. I know from experience not to tell a counselor I attempted suicide because I need someone to talk with not to be locked up again. You’re just another person who feels sorry for THEMSELF that someone they cared about killed themself. Go to a support group, there are plenty of them out there for you. ANGRY? You bet I am.

        • I agree that they need connection — connection is what we all need. It’s necessary and it’s a lifesaver. Without it, we can’t survive and certainly can’t thrive.

          I’ve come across a blog for suicide attempt survivors, which includes a list of support groups for suicide attempt survivors, which might be helpful for you in your search:

          And I agree that more support and resources are absolutely needed for survivors. Have you seen this TED talk? “Breaking the Silence For Suicide Attempt Survivors”

          Sending love,


  • Lucifuge

    There are many of us out there…people who see themselves as ugly, worthless monsters. Nobody has ever hated themselves in the history of the world more than I hate myself…and it is a distant, quiet, detached hate, like the hint of smoke from a wildfire one can’t see. I have learned how to hate myself to the point where that hate become a numb thing, as worthless in and of itself as I am. I suppose that hating myself is the one success in life that I can well and truly call my own. I know, without a doubt, that I am alone, no matter how many smiling faces or warm sunrises there are in the world.

    I am alone, I hate myself, and one day I will die. This is life’s greatest truth, for those who can see past the glam and glitter of those Olympian beings who exist in another world, separate and apart from the Looking Glass world that I live in.

  • whatever

    Keep telling me that I’m not alone. I don’t care if there are others out there that feel the same way as i do, because i know that there is no one that would still care just 6 months after i leave. I’m alone. And I’m tired of living. I’m not angry with myself, not concerned about how ugly I am, not about my grades, and not in the least bit worried about being with others and making ends meet anymore. I’m alone, exhausted, and sick of going through life like I’m a third party. Death is something different that I can achieve. Something to get out of the lonely monotonous day to day life I’m stuck in. I’ve been considering this for a couple years by this point. “Waiting one more day” and finding something worth staying here for is getting pointless. It’s not going to appear.

  • Kelsie

    Oh my God. This. This right here is officially the most wonderful thing I have ever read in my life. I’ve come close to killing myself recently, and reading this…My God, I don’t think I’ve ever come across anything more soul-wrenching in my life. A week ago, I felt surrounded/caged/suffocated by people who expected ridiculous amounts from me, and didn’t care/wouldn’t care/didn’t want to know about my pain, or how I felt about any of it. I sat in the bathroom for an hour, just staring at a razor, trying to get up the courage to do it. The thing that stopped me was my three year old son, knocking on the door asking where I was. I knew I had to keep living for him, because if I didn’t there would be no-one to take care of him. Even so, I didn’t have any feeling that things would get better; I just ploughed on the best I could, forcing myself through the days and clinging to life for the sake of my boy. I literally had no hope, couldn’t even force myself, lie to myself that I did. But reading this – now I have hope. I’m smiling properly for the first time in months, all because of this site and this article. I’m gonna get out of this rut I’ve fallen into and really make something of myself, give my son the best life I possibly can, no matter what. You have given me the courage, faith, strength and hope to do it. Words can’t express my gratitude. Thank you so, so much.

    • Kelsie,

      Love, that is all.

      I have so much love for you and your son and I’m sending you all the love and strength I can muster. I’m glad beyond words that you’re still here (and I know your son is, too.)

      If there’s anything I can ever do to help, please feel free to reach out — I mean it.


  • Maria

    Thank you. It really is a big battle everyday. And yes, it is very tiring.

  • Bob

    Reading this, I find myself thinking, I don’t need anyone to understand. I don’t need more talk from people of how it’s going to get better. I’m sick of talk. It’s all B.S. because, not matter how much talk there is, no matter how much therapy talking and listening, nothing changes. I can talk and I can listen till I’m blue in the face but that won’t make that “someone special” come around. So the thoughts of suicide hang on me like a blanket, slowly constricting, suffocating. Because no matter how much I talk and how much I listen and how many other people are in my same situation, nothing changes. There is still no “special someone”. I’m not keen on dying. Never have been, but I think in my case, and in many others, the urge to commit suicide has more to do with just wanting out of the situation because the situation, year in and year out, isn’t changing. Perhaps some people were never meant to meet that special someone.

  • No Name

    I don’t even know what it feels like to be happy anymore. I’m 24 and have been alone and depressed the whole time. Sure I somehow managed to do well in school, go to college, and get a well paying job but it doesn’t change the fact that I am and have always felt completely alone and have nobody to talk to or be with. Never had a girlfriend and the only “good” friends I’ve had in my life have stabbed me in the back.

  • T Hal

    When I come upon these websites, while I appreciate what I believe to be sincere concern–even empathy–on behalf of the site owners, I wonder why it is so few actually hear what those who are struggling with these profound emotional maladies are actually saying in the comment sections. People feel alone, uncared for, and worthless. They have already tried, many admit, many, many times to reach out to professionals and hotlines for help, and have been rebuffed and dismissed. Their families and acquaintances, IF they even have these, either don’t want to be bothered or can’t devote any time from their own already convoluted lives to listen or help. Yet the advice these sufferers are given, over and over and over again, is to reach out for help.

    What is wrong with admitting that sometimes what is necessary is simply lacking? Depression, isolation, and suicidal ideation may be all related. And there is no guarantee that people will get what they need, no matter how often or assiduously they seek it. That seems just a fact of life.

    Also, I notice that here and in the comment sections of many other similar sites people, in searing frustration, point out they don’t need platitudes. But that’s what they often get. I believe people often give platitudes when they realize they have nothing substantive or effective to offer. It’s natural to want to say something in response to another’s admission of grave pain. But maybe the rest of us should just keep silent and be-in-the-moment with others when they’re suffering and turn to us.

    Another observation: help lines can make things far worse. When people are at the proverbial end of their ropes, have no one (friends, family) else to turn to, and finally contact a help line only to be dismissed in mere seconds, this is another validation of the message they’re getting from all the sources that actually matter–hiring managers saying “no” and “no one owes you a job,” family or “friends” who’re constantly too busy to visit or even return a rare text message, a government that commodifies everything and pronounces life’s value is determined by characteristics these in pain simply lack enough of at the moment, all the people and organizations who in fact determine if one can acquire the resources to stay alive–that they don’t matter.

    The irony, of course, is everyone tells those who’re suicidal that (a) there’s help if they only reach out for it, and (b) that their lives matter, yet many who’re suicidal are suicidal precisely because neither (a) nor (b) appears true with any appreciable frequency. And people are simply not stupid enough to buy the saccharine rhetoric of life-value, given the ubiquitous evidence to the contrary.

    I’m just an average guy myself. So I cannot believe that if I see this, smarter, better trained professionals than me do not see it. Which begs the question, why do the platitudes and other vacuous expressions persist? Depression and suicide continue unabated, despite all the professional interventions and hotlines and websites devoted to instilling hope. It shouldn’t take a PhD in anything to figure out why.

    No disrespect meant to who, I’m sure, are well-meaning individuals who nonetheless disagree with me.

    • Natasha Paquette

      Yes! Thank you! This exactly. I have been trying to point this out to others myself, only to be told I am wrong. I reach out, and reach out, and reach out, and am told “people don’t know what to say” or “people have their own stuff going on” or “people are busy”….yet I somehow magically ( as a single mom to three: all in sports, a student, and who works) still find time to text friends daily to inquire after them, visit friends I know need the support, and generally do whatever I can. Yet I am not allowed to ask the same in return. I am being needy and unreasonable. I am honestly getting tired and annoyed at all this “talk” about awareness and how people should reach out. It’s all lip service to make them feel they are doing something good and worthy, but when it comes down to it they aren’t willing to put their money where their mouth is.

  • guest

    So our purpose is to suffer for 80 years and share the suffering of other people that are having a hard time suffering so that we can all suffer together. Sounds fun.

  • Zara

    It’s clear you suffered a great loss and for that I’m sorry.

    I, like so many others, also suffered a great loss: she did not die but left me. She was and still is the love of my life. While I have no base for comparison I think in a way it’s even worse (for me) that she’s still alive. I don’t know anything about her, how she’s doing, what she thinks, how she feels… Nothing, nothing at all. This isn’t some stupid crush gone sideways or a run-of-the-mill relationship ending: this to me was the end of the world and a transition into a hell that is so profoundly miserable words will never do justice to it.

    They say hell is being cut off from god’s love… To me it’s being cut off from her love forever.

    You say I am not alone: I am. No-one knows and can’t possibly know what this feels like: all one ever has is one’s own experience and one can only infer everything else.

    Sadly people just don’t care: sure they’ll mutter some words of encouragement to sooth their conscience but as soon as they get a glimpse of true despair and anguish they’ll distance themselves from you as if you had the black plague. What makes it suck even more is that you don’t even have a right to ask anything from them.

    I’m sorry but well-intentioned as this blog post may be (again inference as I cannot possibly know you) I’m afraid it’s also rather naïve. One should wish the world was like that…

    If my life mattered it wouldn’t be filled to the brim with sadness, regret, doubt and futility. As I write this I’m listening to a recording of Enrico Caruso and I feel nothing… Anyone who understand anything about this music will know it means I’m dead already. I died in spirit before my body gave out. To die before one’s time truly is the cruelest of fates. In comparison physically dying, whether by one’s own hand or through an external cause, is a profound blessing.

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