How My Abuse Made Me Consider Suicide
Trigger warning: This post involves a frank discussion of suicide with abuse victims.
September 10 is World Suicide Prevention Day around the world. With the more prevalent talk of suicide, mental health, and available resources, old thoughts can be triggered, as they have for me. I believe there needs to be more education, awareness, and increased help for anyone who struggles with suicidal thoughts or ideas of inflicting harm on themselves. I wonder if maybe more accessible options may have been the help I needed when I was younger and struggling.
Suicide Takes Too Many Lives
According to information from the World Health Organization and the Global Burden of Disease study, approximately 800,000 individuals lose their life to suicide every year.1 These staggering numbers reflect that, on average, one person dies from suicide every 40 seconds worldwide.
Thousands more people struggle daily with suicidal thoughts, making this situation even more alarming. And in a shocking twist, I was almost one of these 800,000 individuals several times throughout my life.
Abuse Made Me Consider Suicide
There were several times throughout my life when suicide crossed my mind. Sadly, my first recollection was of me feeling trapped and unable to change my abusive situation. I thought it was the only way for me to get away and stop the horrible life I had.
Later, in elementary school, I was mercilessly teased by a student regularly. This situation made my school days full of anxiety, stress, and fear. When I finally found the courage to ask this person why they wouldn't leave me alone, they responded that it was fun, and I made it easy for people to tease me. This answer got me thinking that I would never escape abuse, and I was doomed to attract people who found me an easy target. Once again, I believed the only way to escape abuse was to take measures on my own.
More recently, as I worked through my healing, I found old thought processes and memories that were painful to work through and face. After talking about my history of abuse, more individuals began to victim-blame, shame me, and gaslight me. These events compounded my already sensitive psyche, and sadly, suicidal thoughts returned periodically.
I was tired of facing negativity from people who didn't understand my situation. I was angry that some individuals thought I would make up lies about my past. I was hurt that the people I thought would be supportive turned away from me to avoid me or would lash out by calling me names and telling me I was destroying my family.
I May Still Struggle
Many individuals receive excellent mental health care and build a more positive life away from a world of abuse. However, even those who escape verbal abuse may still struggle with suicidal ideation periodically. Although I may never be completely free of these debilitating thoughts, they are fewer now than before, and I have a supportive circle I can turn to when I need them.
So, it's okay if you are like me and still struggle, even years after the abuse is gone. There will be good and bad days, and I find that my simplest solution is to go to sleep when I am having a bad day. I tell myself that even if it is the worst day, once I go to sleep and wake up, tomorrow will be a different day. I always feel better after sleeping.
If you are having difficulties finding peace, escaping verbal abuse, and having suicidal thoughts, you are not alone. There are thousands of people just like you, and thankfully, many available resources can help bring you through your dark days and find better ones.
If you feel that you may hurt yourself or someone else, call 9-1-1 immediately.
For more information on suicide, see our suicide information, resources, and support section. For additional mental health help, please see our mental health hotline numbers and referral information section.
Ritchie, H., Roser, M., & Ortiz-Ospina, E. (2015, June 15). Suicide. Our World in Data. Retrieved September 7, 2022, from https://ourworldindata.org/suicide#citation
Wozny, C. (2022, September 8). How My Abuse Made Me Consider Suicide, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2022, December 1 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/verbalabuseinrelationships/2022/9/how-my-abuse-made-me-consider-suicide