Monday, 1 February 2016

Suicidal thoughts and fighting back

Suicidal thoughts suck. They are painful and distressing and can take over your mind. So how do we accept them as part of depression without acting on them?

I have chronic major depression and when it hits, as it frequently does, suicidal thoughts are the first to appear. It’s always the same, I get images in my head and then the ideas appear about how I could kill myself. I think about the relief from the pain. For that’s what the ideas are about, escaping from the torturous pain that depression is inflicting.

I have come to the conclusion that these thoughts are not going to go away any time soon and so the only thing I can do is try and accept that they are going to be with me but I’m not going to lie down that easily…

I have decided to talk back to them, get angry with them and its sort of working. I tell them, “You are not my real thoughts. You are depression working within my head”. “Bugger off” (or usually stronger words then this.” Then for some much needed calmness, “this will pass, its temporary.”
Often they talk back and I get into an argument; I suspect if onlookers saw me I would be grinding my teeth, narrowing my eyes and muttering. The important thing is to acknowledge them, accept them and to argue back. Ok, so they are here again. But I remind myself; we have been here before, do these thoughts represent all of me? No. Are they trying to destroy me? Yes. Am I going to put up with it? Not if I can help it. The trick is separating out the thoughts from the depression and myself; seeing them for what they are.

It’s true that this is easier said than done but even just trying to do this does seem to help. Even though I know how strong and convincing these thoughts can be, just the process of trying to talk back is useful.

I haven’t always succeeded and a few years ago had some suicide attempts but after a long road of the thoughts being with me, it’s time to fight back!

By James Withey 

James also runs a website in which he has used his own expeience to help others. Please check out his amazing website here:

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