Suicidality

So I know that I post mostly about how I work with people who suffer from psychosis whether it is Schizophrenia, Bi-Polar ext…but in our hospital we also have a Unit for patients who are considering suicide or have already made an attempt at taking their own life. I realized that I never post about that and that I do have some things to say about it and so here it goes. We actually have two Units for patients that come in because they are not safe from themselves, one is the Adolescent so 12-17 and then the other is 18 and up. These people are in the ward against their will because they are not deemed safe. Someone in authority whether it was a doctor or a police officer found them not safe from harming themselves or sometimes others. Most of the people that come in attempted to overdose on medication. That is the most common suicidal attempt we see. Some other ones we see are running out into the middle of traffic, putting a gun to their head, hanging themselves and stabbing themselves in the stomach with a knife. Something that I have found surprising is that a lot of patients when asked, ” How would you kill yourself if you could?” answer that they would drive their car off a cliff.

 Another common thing we see among this population of patients is self-harm, where people will use razors or other sharp objects to cut their arms and legs until they bleed. We see this among our Borderline Personality Disorder patients of whom are mostly women.

Now I know that those of you who have never experienced severe depression before are probably reading and saying, ” This is crazy. Who thinks like this? Who talks like this? Who could ever even think of doing these things?”

It is crazy, your right but when a person is not in the right state of mind, is not thinking clearly and truly feels like there is no hope or happiness in their future, the idea of never waking up again sounds so wonderful.

You may also be wondering , ” Well who are these people? What could be so terrible in their lives that they would consider doing something like this?”

Well most of these people have had a difficult upbringing with sexual and or physical abuse, divorce or their parents were drug addicts ext…. So in turn they turned to drugs or alcohol and the cycle continued. A lot of the patients have dysfunctional relationships, are financially stressed, some had to give up their children, they have low-paying jobs.  Basically when they are so many life stressors and not a lot of “good” life stressors going on depression is prevalent. I have noticed quite a large number of patients that come in because their significant other left them and they saw no point in living.

With depression I believe that it can be situational and biological. It can be because something traumatic has happened but it will pass in time. But I do believe that depression can also be caused by an imbalance of chemicals in the brain. I know this to be true because I suffer with this. And I know how it feels to feel completely empty and hopeless and to feel like someone is literally stabbing you in the chest with a knife to where it is physically painful. I know what it feels like to not want to wake up. I know what it feels to literally feel no joy in something that I used to find joy in. I don’t think there is anything worse than not being able to feel happy. But I was blessed to find a medication that works for me and helps my brain function right. I can feel happy again and I hope that others find this too for themselves. I believe that I still have to provide myself with a good “situation.” But I want anyone who suffers with depression to understand that it is not normal to live like how I described, you can get help and please not feel ashamed. It is ok to need help.

Like we say in the hospital, ” If you had appendicitis you would get surgery right?” So please if you have depression or even think you may have it go to your doctor and ask for help. You can feel happier, it is possible!

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