by Beth Tucker
Suicide is not always just an emotional or psychiatric issue. Sometimes it’s a physiological one too.
I am a suicide attempt survivor
That means I have survived a suicide attempt. I’m also thankful to be in a much better place today, emotionally, psychologically, physically, and most importantly spiritually.
Four years ago I underwent brain surgery with extensive complications which resulted in a massive hemorrhage to the left temporal lobe of my brain. We hear so much these days about traumatic brain injury (TBI) caused by things such as football-related concussions, military IEDs, as well as other brain injury related events. The truth is that a TBI can triple your risk for suicide.
I remember how distorted my thinking was
Makes no sense to me now, but back then it was ALL I could think about. It’s actually hard for me to fathom today, but back then my brain was literally fooling me into thinking this was something I had to do.
I remember planning every step I would take, including taping hand written notes to all my belongings, giving away important things, and writing goodbye notes to my children and my parents. I wish I could explain just how confused I was at the time.
I can remember feeling so desperate, isolated, and lonely. Your mind literally plays tricks on you and leads you to believe that others would be better off without you. I felt trapped! As if suicide was my ONLY option. Again distorted thinking.
Those thoughts were lies
The brain plays tricks on you when it’s been damaged physiologically (from an injury) or chemically (from depression). Thank you Anne Moss, for teaching me to not be ashamed of my story. Thank you for shining a light on this too often misunderstood and taboo subject.
Guilt is the feeling of doing something wrong, Shame is the feeling of being something wrong.
While I can’t change the past and what happened, I can change my future, and learn from my mistakes. So glad I’ve been given a second chance at life, and so glad to have met you Anne Moss. Thank you for your important work in this world! In the words of Brene Brown..”If we share our story with someone who responds with empathy and understanding shame can’t survive.”
Before meeting Anne Moss, I hadn’t spoken to anyone about my suicide attempt, not since the day I was released from the hospital after it happened. I was too ashamed. Thank you Anne Moss for having the courage to turn your pain into purpose. And for inspiring me to use my voice, the one I was given back, to now do my part to help wipe away the stigma.