From Alex

Dear You,

Suicide for me has and still remains a way out of the cage of my life and my thoughts, but until two weeks ago it felt like the only way out. But, I was wrong, people can get help. It is for this reason that hope has at least on a surface level returned. I am at the beginning of a long recovery.

Life seems meaningless, purposeless, lonely and unloved. No matter how much people try to reach out I push them away. No matter how much people tell me my life has meaning it doesn’t feel that way. I sometimes find myself in a state of urgency to escape, a kind of desperation to vacate my self. My advice in those moments that you may experience, is slow things down, calm the impulse to hasten departure. Go for a walk, look up at the sky and the glistening stars, feel the touch of the earth and leaves upon your skin, try attempting to talk to someone, try attempting to open up even if you want to just to hide away. Seek out something that gives you an ounce of pleasure even in your bleakest moments.  If there isn’t anything, that is the point at which you should walk, drive, bus or train yourself to A&E, or get someone to take you if you think you might attempt suicide on the way. Or if you have a friend, get them to sit with you through it.

I believe that if you are reading these letters it is because you are also searching for an exit other than suicide. You want to want to live. But you just don’t know where to look. That is why you must seek help. Professional mental health workers can help. As can family and friends.

No one feels exactly the same, no one shares the same experience, but your difference is not a weakness. Your pain, your sadness, your darkness is not a weakness, it is you experiencing and reflecting upon the complexity and painfulness of existence and your personal human condition. The question is what do you do with those ponderings?

Because you have a choice before you. You can give in, and not search for a way out any more. Or you can hold on even tighter to life, search even harder, and overcome more than you imagined you could.  When you realize the great depths you have swam to find your way through those murky blackened waters, you will come to the realization that you are indeed stronger than you have thought yourself capable of being. In that moment you will have affirmed your value and strength in this absurd place that is existence. You will realize you are greater and stronger than your negativity. It is there that you will have found reason to stay alive.  It is there you will find the foundations of recovery.

However, you will only reach that point if you endure, and stay alive, no matter how hard it gets, no matter how painful.

I wish you, as one human being to another the deepest of support and hope. Be audacious, be hopeful.