6 Months Broken.

6 Months Broken

*Touches on suicide*

 

Dear Liv,

 

I miss you so immensely. You know that. You’re about the only one who knows that. Nobody else sees what losing you has done to me. They think you’re just someone I talked to online occasionally. But you and I know the extent of our friendship. Only, there’s only me left to attest to that. So I face the pain of missing you, entirely alone. I may have only got to see you once in my life… seven years ago…. something I’ll always treasure…  but I’ve known you a lot longer than that.

 

I knew you when you were about 17. We used to talk on the forum about Westlife. We’d also support each other. But Westlife was our escape from our demons. I remember sending a picture of ourselves so we could put a face to a name. Then we became Facebook friends. Our bond grew over the years. When times were tough for you I would offer words of support and remind you how wonderful you were. I didn’t understand eating disorders, so I always felt pretty useless when it came to that, but I did what I could. I didn’t know the right thing to do or say…. at times I’d see photos of you and I’d be worried, as you didn’t look well, but I knew those sorts of demons feed off of how people perceive you, so I didn’t want to make you worse. I should have said something though. I sent you some minion themed presents one time as I wanted to cheer you up. And you were always there for me too.

 

You were my biggest champion…. you never let me put myself down. You always reminded me that I mattered, that my feelings mattered and that I deserved love and happiness. You never let me feel alone.

 

You read all my blogs and watched my video journals too. You supported me when people were unkind. And when I made mistakes and said things that may have offended people, I apologised and you forgave me and acknowledged me fixing my error. You never held anything against me. You never judged me. You always understood me. I never once fell out with you. You were everything I could ever ask for in a friend. I just wish you could see what I and so many others could see in you. And now you’re not here to know how heartbroken we are without you. I say ‘we’ like I’m part of a community of people missing you…. I’m not. I’m so alone with this. There are people out there who are supporting each other in their grief… a lot appear to have just ‘moved on’ and have stopped talking about you. And then there’s me. I don’t know the other people who knew you. They don’t know I exist or how much I’m hurting now. And the people in my life never even ask if I’m okay. Friends, family… everyone…. they have no clue how on the edge I am. They don’t know the pain I’m in. They don’t mention your name, and seem uncomfortable when I mention it.

 

Nobody likes pain or grief. They steer clear of people who are experiencing both. That’s been the hardest part of losing you. As you knew, I lost my best friend because of my mental health, a few months before you went. You were all I had left. You were so good to me with my grief for my granddad. You were the one who guided me through it… told me what pitfalls to look out for, and how to look after myself. You supported me and didn’t run away from my grief. You really were an angel in my life. Now you’re gone there’s nothing. There’s nobody to take your place… they never could anyway. But they’ve all dispersed.

 

The hardest part of losing someone to death, is losing all those who are living as well…  and losing so much of yourself in the process. I’ve spiralled this year…. I’ve fallen into a pit of grief and isolation…. pain and grief make others uncomfortable, so they turn away and remain silent…. this worsens the feeling of loneliness… the grief intensifies, the mental health deteriorates and people avoid you even more…. I really have got to the point I don’t fear what I say anymore – I have nothing left to lose.

 

It’s so difficult to experience this sort of grief…. to not have my best friend and my Godchildren to keep me going….. to not have you there to help me….. to not have anyone else asking how I am, if I need anything, or acknowledging you ever existed and the pain I feel at losing you. Other people who are grieving seem to get showered with support and kind words. But it’s a violent slap of silence when it comes to me. I’ve always had this problem, but somehow when you were alive it helped…. more people would talk to me if you talked to me…. and if they didn’t then at least I had you to talk to, plus I didn’t have a whole chunk of my heart ripped out by losing you.

 

The silence is the deafening cliché. Life is empty…. yet every moment is filled with overpowering emotions, too dark and dangerous for one person to feel. I have urges to run to every person from my past – to beg for their friendship…. to beg for answers and closure…. to get revenge…. to open up old wounds and make me feel enough pain to do whatever it is you did to leave this world….. to just not be this alone. I want someone to care…. I want to do almost anything to get just one person to care. I need the therapist I had feelings for… it’s where my mind runs to every time. But I also want to connect with friends who hurt me in the past – because I can’t cope with the fact my former best friend is now friends with them all after hurting me so badly. I want to hurt her back, so much, but I don’t have the means. I’m not friends with her friends…. I can’t do the things to her that she’s done to me, to make her know how it feels. I hate I’m this vengeful person. I hate how desperate I’ve become. But I can’t do this life anymore. I couldn’t do it even before you left me behind. Why did you have to leave me behind? Why couldn’t I come with you?

 

You left me, five weeks before I would finally see you again. Before we would see Westlife together in the front row. My ‘dream come true’ became something traumatic to get through. It still haunts me that you should’ve been there with me. And that I never got the chance to see you and give you a hug. You didn’t give me the chance to save you. If I’d known then I could’ve done something or said something. I wish you had given me that opportunity. You didn’t even say goodbye. How long had you been planning to go? When we were planning to meet up before the show, did you know then that you would never see me? How could you do that to me? You said you’d go with me, after I lost my usual Westlife buddy….. but then you didn’t go with me…. I won’t go into all the detail – you’d have seen the chaos at that time. What I had to put myself through to not be going alone. It was degrading…. it was heartbreaking and traumatic, given my childhood.

 

I know you were obviously experiencing something that was too powerful to overcome. Maybe one day I’ll understand more…. it’s hard when you don’t know much about it…. when you don’t know if it was intentional / planned or if it was just self-harm gone wrong and you didn’t mean to die… I don’t know how it happened, if there was a note etc. – I’m not sure I want to know, but it makes it hard to come to terms with it all when you don’t know. So many questions flash through my mind….

 

Most of the time I remember you with love and I try and honour the memory of you in my everyday life. But as you’ll know I have my times I’m angry towards you. I know this is something you wouldn’t want, and some say it’s wrong to be angry about someone taking their own life, but sadly it’s a part of the grief. It’s all the ‘should’ve beens’ and the ‘what ifs’ and the ‘never to be’ moments… it’s feeling robbed of goodbye and of a chance to stop it from happening. I should’ve done more. But I can never do that, and now you’re gone forever. There are no second chances with suicide.

 

People who say that the pain someone feels from losing someone to suicide cannot compare with the pain someone felt to choose suicide, I unfortunately hope they experience that sort of loss for themselves, as they clearly never have…. maybe then they’ll learn what utter tosh that is to spout. Suicide breeds suicide. They obviously don’t realise that. Even people without mental health issues consider suicide after losing a loved one to it. I was already suicidal before you left me. Now it’s the only thing on my mind. It’s a given that I’m likely not going to be here in a year’s time. I’ve almost given up on everything as what’s the point? I’m making plans yet thinking it’s a waste of money – I won’t be here. There was even talk of getting a piano, and I thought … don’t waste the money… I won’t be here for much longer. Do you know how depressing that is? … Yeah, I guess you do.

 

Mental illness is a funny thing…. to an outsider you had it all…. you had your partner…. you had Squish Squish…. you had your new place… you had your job with the police finally… we were seeing Westlife back together, in the front row…. a lot of people valued you and loved you… you could see it from the outpouring of grief when you went. Yet it wasn’t enough to stay. The demons won. And then there’s me…. I have nothing…. I have nobody but my closest family…. all I have for company are my friends Grief, Paranoia, Isolation and BPD, and a heap of bitterness for having nothing else left.

 

When I go, nobody will cry… nobody will write warmly about me…. nobody will come to my funeral…. nobody will bloody notice! I’ve been calling out for help for two years, and nobody cares. You kept a lot of your feelings hidden. Your videos were always encouraging… positive… caring for others…. you were a good, kind, beautiful person with the most wonderful heart and soul…. people loved you. People loved you and they don’t love me…. because I’m brutally honest about how awful life is. I pour my feelings out and get nothing back. I feel the way to matter to people now, is to stay silent and pretend to be okay. Unfortunately it’s something I’m not sure I can do. It’s why I know my journey will mirror yours… only difference is I made no impact…. I’m a nobody…. if people feel anything when I go it’ll be relief… relief that the negativity that is me, is gone, finally.

 

I’m having difficulties with that though…. when you lose everything and everyone and your one remaining friend ends her life, how can you seem anything but ‘negative’? That’s why I know there’s no way back for me. I have nobody left believing there’s good in me. Nobody fighting for me and for my recovery. Nobody cheering me on. Nothing to live for. Nothing will ever be okay again, not now you’re gone. How am I meant to overcome grief like this when grief is what has driven everyone so far away from me?

 

I’ll tell you, as I have nobody else to tell…. I keep dreaming of my best friend and my Godchildren…. they were all in it the night before last. The night before that I saw my Godson and spoke to him – he felt like nobody liked him… I told him I did… he looked at me funny… I said ‘You don’t remember me do you?’… he shook his head. It hurts so damn much. You were the one person I could confide in and ask advice from about how to handle things…. I shouldn’t have lumped it on you probably. I’m sorry. But you helped me so much, to not give up on myself just because others did… I have nobody to ask about anything anymore. I feel so lost. My life feels empty and pointless. It feels like there’s a brick wall between me and everyone else. I feel like a ghost to them all. You would never have left me feeling like a ghost…. you would hate that people are making me feel this way. You’d do something about it. But you’re not here anymore….

 

In fact six months ago yesterday you left the world. Six months ago tonight I went on Facebook and saw people sending RIP messages to you…. that was how I found out. I vividly remember the feeling… the shock…. the devastation. I remember feeling my spirit draining out of my body. I remember telling my family and breaking down… I remember collapsing on the stairs, hugging the wall, the pain and denial I felt. I remember howling in pain for what felt like hours. I remember how sick I felt. This was all before finding out you had taken your own life. I’d assumed as much anyway. It was the worst nightmare come true. I never wanted to lose you from my life. I’ve lost a lot of friends from my life…. you are the biggest loss, and the way I lost you is the most traumatic thing I’ve ever experienced. I was so scared this would happen one day.

 

I couldn’t sleep or eat. I couldn’t stop crying. I got in touch with my former friend, hoping to have one less loss to contend with… I needed her to be my friend, to help me through losing you. I got a couple of texts, but also got unblocked and re-blocked at the worst point in my life. That was all. And now I’ve had six months without her. Six months with no support from anyone. As you’d know, I’m not coping. I can’t function anymore. I can’t go out. I can’t do anything. I’ve lost all reason to exist. I can’t cope with people – not too big a problem as I don’t exist to most of them anyway. I can’t work. I can’t be around family sometimes. I keep hurting myself, and I want to do worse. My mental health is down the toilet and I have no friends. I have no support yet – I’m still waiting for an assessment. I’m emotionally paralysed.

 

Things are getting harder coming up to Christmas. You loved Christmas so much and I wish I could get into the spirit for you. I’m trying. But deep inside I’m dreading it. I don’t want to see another Christmas. This will be the worst one. Last year was pretty bad with the fallout with my friend, and my efforts being snubbed – being made to feel invisible…. but you were still here then. This is the first one without you here. You’re not here. My granddad’s not here. My friend will not be snubbing me this year, she’s full on blocked me out of her life… I don’t have the children to buy for anymore… no reason to get in the spirit of things. When I look at Christmas decorations in the shops I feel closer to you, but I wander round in a daze, still unable to accept your absence. I feel Christmas is being forced upon me this year. I can’t cope with the fact life is going on without you…. that it hasn’t stopped to allow me to grieve. Time is slipping away and I’m expected to carry on regardless of how I feel. I even remember the job people phoning not even a couple of months after it happened…. and when I said what had happened they asked something like ‘… and it’s still troubling you?’ …. well, yes… it’s called grief. It had only been a few weeks….

 

Do people expect me to just move on and feel nothing about what happened?  Believe me, I wish I was a robot and felt nothing. The pain I feel is too much, and I have no way of releasing it. So I break down, quite often. I have to avoid life to keep safe.

 

I’m trying to look after myself and find interests again…. little reasons to survive another day… I taught myself to solve a Rubik’s cube. I’m trying to take up cross-stitch again… I’ve fetched my colouring books again… I play the guitar when I can. Tiny little steps to find ‘joy’ again. There can be no real joy… that’s how I feel now you’re gone. But if I can find this flat level of joy to just hold on until someone decides they can help me, then I guess that’s something.

 

Sorry to ramble on… I don’t have anyone to talk to anymore. You’re the only one who really cared about me. I feel so alone without you here. As you know, I felt alone before you went. Now the isolation is excruciating. I feel I’m being punished for grieving and being ill. That’s how the last year or two have felt. People don’t get that I’m in enough pain as it is… that I’m suffering enough…. being left alone, with nobody even asking how I am and genuinely caring about the answer, it hurts even more. I honestly do feel I’m being punished, and if I’m that bad a person that I deserve this, then I don’t deserve to live. I don’t want to live. I want to be where you are. I really don’t think I can ever heal now. I don’t want to. The pain, the rage, the powerlessness, the loneliness, the resentment – all of it coursing through me…. all I want to do is rip the world apart, tear a hole in it and throw the people who hurt and abandoned me through that hole, robbing them of their lives just as they have robbed me of mine. I want to destroy everything and everyone. And then I want it all to stop. I want peace.

 

I hope you found peace Liv. I hope you found your mum and that you’re happy together again. I’m so sorry you had to live with that loss for so long and you couldn’t carry on any longer. I don’t blame you. I couldn’t do it. I can’t do it having lost the people I have lost. I just wish it didn’t have to be this way. I wish you hadn’t left me. I needed you. I admired you. I was so thankful for you. And now I’m nothing without you. How do I go on when you couldn’t?

 

I’ll be seeing Westlife without you again next year, twice…. if I survive that long. I should be excited. I am, but I’m also upset. I have to go alone to everything like that now. My friend has ditched me, and now you’re not here. So I really am alone. It’s upsetting everyone booking tickets with other people and I’m just left as a loner. I’ll be seeing them on my birthday next year – I’ll be celebrating it on my own as I have nobody to go with now. People don’t realise how that sustained level of isolation affects your self-worth, and therefore your desire to live in this world.

 

I hate that you never saw them perform together again. You never heard their last two songs. I know in the grand scheme of things people would think there’s sadder things than you missing out on Westlife…. I don’t doubt that at all. I know that. But these are personal things to me. Even then, there are more important reasons it’s so tragic you’re gone. It’s as though a light has gone out. There’s one less angel in the world. You really were a blessing to everyone who knew you. You had your demons to fight, and I’m proud of you for how long you fought against them. You inspired me. The strength you showed after your mum died gave me hope I could survive my first loss a couple of years ago. The support you gave me to get through that – by using your experience of loss and mental illness – it was more helpful than you’ll ever know. Now I have nobody to help guide me through losing you. And losing someone to suicide is so different to normal grief. People will dispute that… until it happens to them.

 

I’m thankful to have known you for such a large portion of my life. The rest of the years without you will be the hardest of all to live. I used to tell you how wonderful you were. I wish you’d believed me. No matter how angry I might get at what happened, nothing will change the incredible person you were and how special you were to me. I wish I could be more like you were as a person. You deserve to be here. I don’t. I wish I could’ve taken your pain away and made it bearable for you to be here. So many people are missing out now Liv.

 

I hope you’re with me now and then. I know there’s places you’d rather be – people who mattered more and are in more pain than me. I sometimes feel like a fraud in that sense. My mind sort of minimises my grief, as though I shouldn’t be this broken by it, since others were closer to you or may have even been the ones to find you. I pray for whoever that was that they can heal from the trauma. I can’t even imagine. My feelings of loss must be tiny compared to closest friends and family. I shouldn’t make it about me. I guess my mental illness and the isolation don’t help. When you went I was left with nothing and nobody, so it became harder to deal with than if I was supported. But the reality is you really mattered to me. And I hope I’ll see you again one day.

 

Until then I’ll play Westlife and believe you’re there with me, enjoying their new music. Someone once said to me that you’ll see everything I see through my eyes. I hope they’re right. I love you Liv and I’ll miss you forever my beautiful friend xxxx

 

 

A Black Day.

*Depressing post, mentions suicide. Bad language also*

 

 

Today’s a black day. A sickeningly lonely day. A day of remembering. A day I’m paralysed by life. A day I can barely move for the bleakness in my mind. Although I’ve been pretty motionless today, it intensely contrasts the state of my mind today. It’s a very loud kind of day…. too much to think / feel and no way of releasing it…

 

So here I am yet again, speaking into the void of the internet… feeling as flat as a pancake. Sitting in the dark, having barely moved all day…. not seen anyone all day. Here I am writing stuff that could never save my life, as it’s all so disconnected from the people in my life who I need to care. Nothing can change the way things are.

 

I cannot have my best friend back. I will never understand what the hell I did to deserve to be ditched in such a callous way. I will never forgive it. I will never recover from it. I will never get through what I’m now going through, because of it.

 

I will never get over losing Liv. Not being able to talk to her ever again in my life. Knowing that she’s gone for good. That I should’ve known and done something. I never got to see her again. I’ll never be able to say all the words I should’ve said, and I’ll never understand what happened and why.

 

I have nothing left.

 

The loss I feel is too intense. Over ten years ago I was starting to come out of my shell. I went from having no friends or connections, to feeling accepted by people. I was doing DBT, I had three individual friends, then a group of people…. I was finding confidence… I even did karaoke during one strange phase of my twenties…. wine was needed though. But I belonged. I felt normal. Men were occasionally attracted to me. They were pretty much all jerks who only wanted one thing from every girl, but this also made me feel better about myself to start with.

 

2012 all of that changed overnight….. I went from having a social life to virtually nothing…. most of my friends hurt me. The guy I liked hurt me. I lost everyone but my best friend.

 

Life changed. No more social life. No more getting out meeting people or building confidence. My life became about my best friend and her impending child… the blessing… the one thing that kept me alive through that awful time of betrayal and loss. Life then became about her and her family… I became Godmother to her two lovely children. They were everything to me. Life was different though… it took a lot of adjusting to.

 

One of my old friends reared her ugly head in 2016, driving a wedge and thread of doubt between me and my best friend. And then my granddad got ill and passed away eight months later. I almost lost another family member to a heart attack in that time. Life became so real seemingly overnight. Until then I never believed I’d lose anyone in that way. Suddenly life was a waiting room… waiting for the next person to die. It was a scary, dangerous and uncertain world….. I needed certainty and stability around me in the form of friendship. I didn’t have this.

 

Last year my friend was so absent from my life. I could literally feel the abandonment in every cell of my body. I was right to feel that way. Voicing my fears only sped up the process… that’s the most sickening part. Due to grief and mental illness I made mistakes. I wasn’t in control of my thoughts or actions. It was terrifying. She held it against me. We fell out. I  extended an olive branch at Christmas but was totally snubbed.

 

This year she wouldn’t make up her mind if she wanted to try and save our friendship or not…. I deserved better than that. In the end I had to make a decision for the sake of my mental health and paranoia. I had to take a step back by unfriending her on Facebook – that way she was free to write what she wanted and it wouldn’t affect our friendship or my mental health. I never got to unfriend her. I told her my intention and the reasons and she immediately blocked me. She blocked any way of me ever reconnecting with her. She made it so I couldn’t message her or re-add her when I feel better (which I never will now). She made it permanent. She made it perfectly clear that she wants nothing more to do with me and never wants to hear from me again. She moved house without telling me a thing about it. I found out through someone else on Facebook.

 

My bond with my Godchildren is broken now, forever…. you can’t get back two years, not at that age. They won’t remember me. But I have to live in this world for the rest of my life having lost them. And I fucking hate my ‘friend’ for doing that to me, at a time I’m grieving my first loss and also the loss of my only other friend to suicide. It’s unforgivable. I cannot live life now because of this. It’s too much loss. I have nothing left.

 

The pain I feel in my heart, thinking about the early days with my God-daughter…. holding her for the first time at a few days old…. seeing her smile at me for the first time…. her learning to walk…. her trying to say my name…. to having actual conversations with her. The bond we had…. it’s gone, forever…. all I have now are photos and videos – and they just break my heart now. My friend would never appreciate this, but losing them was the closest thing to losing my own children. I may never have kids… especially if I’m right that I won’t even be alive in a year… but I loved them like they were family. So to have them ripped away from me, because of some unknown issue between their mother and me – something I don’t even fucking understand myself, it’s not fair. It’s not right. And I violently hate that woman right now. She has destroyed any remnants of my life.

 

I have had identity issues throughout my life, as part of my illness… I’ve gone from being a loner, to having a social life, to not having a social life but having the responsibility of my best friend’s kids, to losing them all – at a time I’m experiencing the most traumatic loss and grief I’ve ever known. I’m left with no friends or support. I don’t know who I am anymore. I’m nobody. I’m nothing.

 

I had this last year… I expressed to my friend that I had lost ‘fun Lily’… I didn’t know how to be ‘fun Lily’ for the kids anymore – because I hadn’t seen them for six months at that point. I felt I wasn’t good enough to be around them if I couldn’t pretend to be okay, which I seriously wasn’t okay…. The remedy would’ve been my friend saying they’d love me whatever, and helping me to find that part of my identity again. She didn’t. She did the opposite. She took it as me not wanting to see them anymore. And she didn’t see me either. So I ended up misunderstood and isolated. Forgotten. Neglected. Abandoned. I kept losing more and more of my identity as a result. Now everything I had is gone I feel there’s nothing left of me. I have nobody to remind me of who I am either.

 

Living with BPD without a support network is fucking impossible. I can’t do it. I want to scream right now. I close my eyes and see violence. I see myself raging inside – smashing things up… tearing my skin off and that of others…. deafening the world with the pain I feel…. I want to make the whole world know how far from okay I am. I contain it most of the time. I wish I didn’t. It’s hell.

 

Nobody talks to me. Nobody replies to me. I don’t exist. Life is awful. I feel too much pain. I don’t want to carry on. Nothing changes. Yet everything has changed. I’ve lost everything. And no amount of talking about it will change that or make anyone else pay attention or care about me. They just don’t and never will.

 

I’m hanging on now, just waiting to see if the Wellbeing Centre will be able to help me. That’s all I’m living for right now.

 

I even give up on ‘Brexit’ now. I hoped I would get to see how it turns out… that I’d still be alive to see us leave the EU. I don’t think I can hold on that many years. If it’s overturned I’ll be going anyway, as it’ll show just how irrelevant I am. But even focusing on Brexit doesn’t help anymore. I’ve got to the point I feel none of it matters…. nothing matters, as I won’t be around much longer. I’m just weary of everything. Nothing feels right.  I want everything to stop.

 

Even when I was on holiday I thought about walking out to sea…. I didn’t want to come home to the reality of life. I’m hanging on but I have nothing to hang on for. My life is empty. The way my ‘best friend’ treated me has left me hating myself, hating her, feeling powerless and frustrated. I have no way to let that out other than to blog or self-harm. This is my existence now. I’ve been using stars on a calendar to mark days I don’t self-harm. I’m good in that there’s only been one day this month, so far, where I haven’t earnt a star. The trouble is I struggle so much with the level of despair and sadness I feel today – that’s harder to cope with than just anger….. it’s an incapacitating emotion and usually leads to me feeling suicidal. Anger can be released and let go of…. this state of mind can’t.

 

Days like today I wish ‘happy pills’ existed…. nothing else would lift my mood right now. In the past with friends I’ve lost, my ‘revenge’ would be me moving on and forgetting them – but I always had other friends to move on with and was able to forget and find happiness. This was my best friend…. my only real friend and she turned her back on me, for reasons I don’t understand at all…. Liv is gone… I have no other friends. It’s impossible to put on a front and get my revenge by moving on. I can’t move on. I have nothing to move on to… nowhere to turn and nothing to survive for. I’m too ill to move on. I want revenge. I hate that I want revenge. I’m not a nasty person. But I’m fucking hurt, and I don’t understand why this all happened. It’s not okay and I have no way of moving on or communicating with her or anything. I’m fucking stuck, and she knows that. That’s why it’s so vindictive of her to cut me out like that. She knows what it would do to me. And she didn’t give a fuck. So I no longer give a fuck about her. I want to move on and be happy and for her to regret losing me but that can never happen. So I have to go for hating her at this point. My only other options for myself when I close my eyes are extremely graphic and disturbingly violent ones.

 

I just wish I could take a pill and forget everything and everyone I’ve known and lost. A pill that makes me happy, and makes me able to trust people therefore form new friendships. I wish I had friends. I cannot survive without any. I used to be in this state, but having had years of friendships and support, and a sense of belonging, I cannot go back to this level of isolation…. too much has happened in my life for me to be able to survive without friends. But any friends I had either hurt me, ghosted me or died. I can’t take anymore pain or loss. I can’t trust anyone. I don’t believe I’m even likeable anymore let alone lovable. And life is loss… therefore life is pain. I can’t face that pain alone. So how am I meant to live in this world?

 

 

 

 

Burdened.

BURDEN

*Strong suicide theme*

 

 

My head is packed full of noise at the moment and I can’t tell what’s what. I don’t know how I feel, what I think or what to do. I don’t even know how to begin unravelling the chaos inside. I feel like I need to write it out but I don’t know where to start. How on earth do I explain everything I’m experiencing? It’s not possible.

It’s been a tough week and nobody even knows about it. With World Suicide Prevention Week, it’s triggered a lot of memories and emotions surrounding the loss of my friend to suicide four months ago. Seeing all the posts / tweets about suicide has been upsetting. Oddly enough the thing that upset me the most was people saying ‘suicide isn’t selfish…. those who think it is are the selfish ones’. I thought, how lovely it must be to see things so simplistically. I have news for people – we’re ALL selfish. Every single one of us. If we’re not then we’re not living life correctly. We all think about things from our perspective. Have these people ever really considered what they’d be like if they lost someone to suicide? They have this view that you shouldn’t make someone’s suicide all about you. I’m sorry but it is about me. It’s about everyone her life touched. Yes she was in pain and couldn’t go on. It’s about her pain and her tragic end to her life. But the moment someone completes suicide it ceases to be about that person anymore and their pain….. it becomes a new wave of pain for everyone else. To say otherwise is to say we shouldn’t grieve the loss of them…. and to not grieve is to deny ever loving them.

Some people have the view that the grief and sadness someone feels at losing someone to suicide, cannot compare to the pain someone feels to want to end their life. I disagree. I don’t think those people can legitimately say that unless they have experienced both. I have experienced both. I am experiencing both right now. Very often those preaching about ‘not judging’ suicidal people and calling those bereaved by suicide ‘selfish’, are people who only have one side of the story… quite often their own experiences of suicidal feelings / attempts on their own lives. They tell others not to judge unless they have been there, whilst judging those who are grieving the loss of someone to suicide. They haven’t been there, they cannot understand how it feels.

I do not think my friend was genuinely and deliberately selfish. I know suicidal feelings like the back of my hand. I understand it. I know it’s part of a mental illness. A symptom that claims lives. It’s something that robs you of your ability to think and see clearly. It distorts reality and makes you feel and believe you are a burden, nobody cares and the world would be better without you. It is an illness. But it can still be seen as selfish. It doesn’t mean the person was selfish. They likely weren’t in their right mind. But it is perfectly normal and natural for loved ones to see it as selfish. I’ll tell you why, from my own feelings in regards to my friend:

  1. She didn’t give me the opportunity to help her. If I had known how she really felt, I would’ve done anything for her. But she denied me the chance to save her life. And I have to live with that forever.
  2. She didn’t give me a goodbye. She just went. I had no closure. I had to make that closure by going to her funeral to say my goodbye. But she didn’t respect me enough to say goodbye or that she was sorry for leaving me. She abandoned me.
  3. She knew how alone I was and what I’d been through. She left me with nobody and nothing, and I’ve now completely shut down and closed off from everyone.
  4. I was due to see her five weeks later – we were looking forward to a concert together and finally seeing each other again. She left me with nobody to go with initially… I had to go round begging people to go with me. I also had to attend the event whilst grieving… having gone to her funeral the week before. I never got to see her again. It felt like I was worthless…. she couldn’t hold on long enough to see me. It felt like a ‘rejection’ of me. It felt like she didn’t want to see me. Like she didn’t care about me.

These points would make some on Twitter bark at me that I’m being selfish, making it about me and not caring about her suffering. I would totally lose it at those people were they to do that. My point is that I am grieving. It’s perfectly acceptable for me to have these thoughts and feelings. They’re not often talked about as we have to appear a certain way, to avoid ‘stigma’. But those who have lost someone to suicide are faced with stigma too. They’re made to feel guilty for having the sorts of views I have just listed. They’re made to feel bad about their anger and for blaming the person. Ultimately I know her suicide was not about me in the slightest – it was about the torment in her own mind. I know that. But I haven’t reached that point in my grief yet – it’s only been four damn months! It’s a process. It takes time. Right now it feels like something done to me. I shouldn’t be shamed for feeling this way, especially by people who have no clue what it’s like to lose someone to suicide.

This last week has taught me I’m fighting the wrong battle. I no longer associate myself with the ‘mental health community’ and fighting stigma against mental illness no matter what. I will fight against it, but when it crosses over into stigma against others who are suffering (e.g. those grieving due to suicide), I will side with the bereaved. I know how suicidal thoughts feel. At this moment I want to end my life. I don’t want to exist anymore. I do not see me being here in a year. That’s why I’m reluctant to buy a ticket for myself to see my favourite band on my birthday next year… what’s the point? I won’t be here then. I know suicidal feelings too well. I know what hell I exist in right now. But what gives me the right to say that what I feel now is worse than what my family would feel if I took my own life? You cannot compare pain like that. That in itself is selfish… thinking your suffering is worse than someone else’s would be.

Suicide spreads. Those who lose someone to suicide are at risk of trying to take their own lives too. They can be left traumatised. They can develop a mental illness as a result, and end up down the same path. And having people say not to make someone’s suicide about you, is the worst thing you can do. It tells those people to shove it down, not talk about it and this will only compound their own struggles with mental illness. Suicide is a silent killer and many die as a result of not talking about how they truly feel…. so for mental health advocates to invalidate people’s feelings and grief and telling them to say nothing, and not be open about how they really feel, it’s damaging and they’re perpetuating the silence of suicide.

 

I have no support around me anymore. The safety net I once had has morphed into the noose around my neck. (1)

 

Those who talk about such things probably don’t know what grief feels like. How it tears your world apart and leaves a hole in your heart. That is just ‘normal’ grief. Grief from suicide is more complex and traumatic than any other loss. It’s a known fact. That’s not to diminish grief from other causes. All loss is traumatic and the worst pain you can imagine. But unless you’ve been affected by someone’s suicide, you have no idea how that feels.

Personally as well, if you haven’t lost someone to suicide then you don’t know what that’s like… to have to cope with that whilst having BPD, where your emotions are more intense. And throw into the mix already feeling suicidal yourself…. and having no friends left, so having to deal with it all on your own. Or rather not deal with it on your own.

How can I then be expected to not make her death about ME…? The point is whilst suicide is not intentionally selfish it does have consequences for other people. I remember someone even saying online before the funeral, if you’re coming then don’t make it all about you, and act like the ‘best friend’. I let that go, on accounts of them grieving. But I took that to heart. That really pierced down to the bone. That was another instance of ‘don’t make it about you’ – i.e. don’t be ‘selfish’. I had no intention of it. And it hurt that it could even be suggested that I would. It may not have been aimed at me, but as I was ‘uninvited’ it felt like it was a pointed comment. I felt they were trying to put me off going. Like I wasn’t welcome. I wasn’t ever going to act like the ‘best friend’ – I never was her best friend. She was the BEST friend I’ve ever had, in the sense that nobody could be better than she was. And I did know her since she was seventeen at least…. she was a huge part of my life, even if we only met up in person once. There’s a gaping hole in my life without her. Nobody has a right to deny that for me. It just felt as though I was being told I didn’t matter to her, so don’t pretend that I did. And when my whole issue in the past year had been that I felt I didn’t matter to anyone, and she was the only one who ever cared about me, that damn hurt. It was torture. I let it go, as I said, but months later it still stabs me in the heart when I think of it. I went to that funeral to show her family she was loved. To show support for them as I felt it’s what my friend would’ve wanted. She may never have expected for me to go to her funeral, but that’s what friends do. That’s how much she mattered to me. I wouldn’t have done that for just anyone. Our friendship mattered…. she wouldn’t want people to make me feel I was nothing to her. I know that. I went to a new place completely alone, for a couple of hours to say goodbye. I had to see her one more time. I never got to see her a month later as planned. She denied me the chance to see her and say goodbye. So I had to go. It was horrible to have to do. It still vividly haunts me today. But it was necessary. I didn’t make it about me. I popped in and ducked out just as swiftly. Yet I beat myself up for weeks afterwards, feeling guilty for intruding. She would hate that I felt that way. I’m not who people may have thought I was. I didn’t make it about me.

But now I’m left entirely alone to survive, I think I’m allowed to make this loss about me. It’s not just about me. But it has impacted on my life, and I shouldn’t be made to feel guilty for admitting that. I have nobody to talk to now. I’m invisible. She always made me feel visible. She’d always remind me what a good person I was. Now I can’t believe I am as I have nobody to help me believe that. There’s no permanence with what’s wrong with me. Sentiments only exist as long as they are said. She’ll never say those words again, and there’s nobody else to say them. So to me it doesn’t exist. I’m not a good person. I don’t know what I’m doing half the time. And I don’t matter to anyone now. And she’s not here to reassure me otherwise.

Her taking her own life has left me wanting to take my own. Feeling it is a certainty now. I see no way of recovering anymore. I’ve lost the two oldest friendships I’ve ever had, both of them early this year. There’s nothing left for me now. To start with I had people telling me what she would want for me… and that she wouldn’t want me to do that… but if she did it, then there’s no reason I shouldn’t. The only thing that stops me from doing it, is thinking how it would affect my family….. the belief that it IS selfish is the one thing that stops me from taking my own life. So I think it’s actually DANGEROUS for mental health advocates to send out a message that it’s somehow courageous and selfless to take your own life…. because you think you’re doing everyone a favour, not being a burden to them…. this is dangerous information to put out there. There needs to be balance.

 

The only thing that stops me from doing it, is thinking how it would affect my family….. the belief that it IS selfish is the one thing that stops me from taking my own life.

 

I think people who are suicidal need to be told they’re not bad people for feeling that way or for attempting to end their lives…. BUT they need to hear the reality. I understand it, I really do…. I feel like the biggest burden to everyone right now. It’s why I isolated myself last year and this year. So often I think about ending my life to unburden other people – but this is based on distorted thinking….

No matter how much of a burden you think you are with your illness, you are NOT a burden to your loved ones. They would rather you were here, asking for help, and being in their lives, than to never be able to see or talk to you again. The thing that burdens people the most is ending your life. That is the heaviest burden known to man. I have to carry that burden with me for the rest of my days, however many that may be. Her family have to carry that burden forever.

I am mentally ill. I feel suicidal. And I am carrying the weight of suicide by my one remaining friend. I don’t feel it can get worse than that. I have to live with that loss forever. This doesn’t encourage me to get better. It makes me want to die because the burden is too much to carry on my own, but that’s where I am in my life now because of her, and because of my best friend who turned her back on me a couple of months prior to my other friend dying. I have no reason to recover.

So suicide does impact on other people. And in that way it can be viewed as ‘selfish’. And I don’t think there’s anything wrong with feeling that, if you are bereaved by suicide. I think people who have no clue of suicidal feelings, OR losing someone to suicide, and just sit on a train complaining about being late because of a ‘jumper’ – that’s wrong. Those people should be challenged. But when people are fighting stigma against the suicidal among us, they ought to remember that some of us are grieving and grief brings out all sorts of emotions, and beliefs. There may come a day when I defend my friend and say suicide is NOT selfish at all. I am not there yet, because it’s only been four months.

But right now it is unintentionally selfish. Some people take their own lives to unburden others. They think they’re helping other people by doing it. But a lot of the time people want to end their lives just to end their pain. Everything else goes out the window. That’s why people believe it is selfish, because they think we’re only thinking of ourselves and our pain, and not considering those we’d leave behind – and sometimes that’s probably true – we probably do forget about them and their potential pain. Or we think they’ll get over it. Or that they don’t care enough to grieve. And sometimes we do think of those we’d leave behind, but that thought isn’t enough to survive what we’re experiencing inside. So ultimately the thoughts of ‘self’ win.

It’s okay to be selfish. It’s okay to feel that suicide is selfish, but not think badly of the person themselves. I know that’s hard to comprehend. But you can think something is selfish yet is not a bad thing. Look, people think I’m selfish for my grieving process and for ‘making it about me’….. and I think those people who judge me for things like I’m writing here, they too are selfish. Because they’re thinking about themselves – their own opinions…. and they’re intolerant of a different view. They don’t stop to question the reason I might have this view… why I might be upset by people saying ‘suicide isn’t selfish’. It’s not a black and white case of me thinking that therefore I’m an ignorant, judgemental prick. But there are genuinely people who would read this post and think that about me. But the REASON I’m upset by that statement is because I have personally lost someone to suicide, therefore I know how it feels. I have conflicting views about suicide. It’s very confusing for me, and it’s a part of grief. So having people tell me it’s wrong to feel a certain way, is damaging in my journey to healing from loss. I’m not one of those ignorant people who don’t know what it feels like. I know perfectly well how it feels. Exactly four years to the day before my friend took her own life, I considered jumping off a bridge. It was the closest I had come to doing something like that.

So I know all about it. I’m also feeling the most hopeless and helpless I ever have. I’m strongly considering suicide myself. I haven’t quite reached that point where anyone needs to immediately worry. But I have an unhealthy obsession with not existing anymore. That’s why reading endless tweets about suicide was very triggering for me.

All these stories about ‘It really DOES get better… look at me now’…. they all felt empty. It may well get better for a lot of people, who have lives to return to…. but I feel like the exception. That’s what I felt when watching a programme about how to help people who are suicidal. I felt all those suggestions would work for someone else but not me. I felt people would care and be there to save other people, but not me. I felt like others can be saved, but I am the exception. I felt dead inside watching that programme. I feel it’s too late for me to be helped. No help can bring back what I’ve lost. I have no support around me anymore. The safety net I once had has morphed into the noose around my neck. The two friends I had left, who could have saved me from this pain and this certain fate, they abandoned me in one way or another. They are the reason I don’t want to exist anymore. I have nobody else to catch me. Everyone else willingly watched me drown or just didn’t even notice I was drowning. I didn’t exist to any of them. So I’ve cut everyone out now. I’m on my own.

I used to see my Godchildren as a part of my future…. it was the one thing I was certain of – that I’d always be in their lives and watch them grow. But when my best friend turned her back on me at my lowest point, she took them with her. So any hope for a future I had, it’s gone now. I’ve not seen them for over a year and half. The bond I had with my God-daughter is broken, along with my heart. I don’t think I’ll ever recover from the pain of that lost bond. My Godson has started school now apparently. My friend moved house apparently…. all of this happened without her telling me anything about it. She cut me out of her life well over a year ago. It was a long drawn-out abandonment and it destroyed me. I have no reason for living anymore. I have too many traumatic experiences from the last couple of years. I have nothing to aim for. And even if I could conjure up some new friends – it takes a long time to cultivate the sorts of friendships I’ve lost this year. And I never will be able to, because I will not trust anyone again, thanks to my former best friend. I will be expecting abandonment and rejection from everyone I meet now. If my best friend of over thirteen years can give up on me because of my mental illness, then nobody else will stick around. They’ll only tolerate me if I pretend to be okay. As long as I never show my reality people will humour me, at best. I used to hide my mental illness from everyone. After my breakdown at therapy two years ago, it let a lot out, and I could no longer hide how I felt. The more ill I got publicly, the less people wanted to do with me, including her. Once the mask of wellness slipped and she saw the true face of depression and BPD, she didn’t want to know me anymore. That’s how it feels. So my self-worth is non-existent now. I don’t believe anyone will ever truly like me. I know for a fact that no man will ever see me as attractive ever again. So I’ve accepted I’m going to die an old spinster…. assuming I survive that long, which I highly doubt right now.

I just feel too broken. Too traumatised. Too alone. I’m a lost cause. I’m feeling too hopeless, that I’m not even doing things I’m meant to be doing. I’ve not approached anyone for help yet… because I don’t believe I can be helped. This feels too big an obstacle for anyone to help me. I need grief counselling… but the problem is not just grief, it’s the mess that’s left behind – my mental illness, my grief, it’s all wrapped up together. Being abandoned by everyone… that affects my mental health and my grief…. my grief affects my mental health and vice versa, and then people abandon me because of it…..which makes me paranoid, which pushes people away…. makes me feel unsupported in my grief…. more mentally ill……. want to die….. see no future – seriously when I picture it, it’s black. There’s literally NOTHING in my future now. Because of abandonment. Because of grief and loss. Trauma and broken trust. Being made to feel worthless and not deserving of a goodbye or a conversation from my best friend. If she didn’t value me who the fuck is going to in this life? And if nobody values me and I’ll be made to feel this shit forever, then I don’t want to live a minute more. What have I done to deserve this?? I feel enraged about it. And then I beat myself up for it, thinking of course I deserved everything that’s happened. I’m an awful person. Another reason to die. But I can’t die, because it’s selfish and would hurt my family. My family are all I have to keep me alive. And even they don’t know how I feel at the moment. I can’t talk to them about any of it. This is how alone I am. This is the most I’ve talked about my feelings in a long time. And my mind’s telling me I shouldn’t have done it. I should keep it all in and let it build until I end my life.

 

I have no support around me anymore. The safety net I once had has morphed into the noose around my neck.

 

Mental health services have changed so much in the last ten years, since I did DBT. They won’t help me until I’ve been through ‘lesser services’. But they all are about ‘recovery’ – you have to want to get better and put the work in. The trouble is I’m beyond that now. They left me too long and too much has happened since. I don’t ‘want’ to get better….. because I cannot see that possibility anymore. It’s impossible to focus on ‘recovery’ when you cannot see the point in it. When you just can’t exist in this life anymore. When no matter what work you do on yourself, your circumstances will still be the same… you’ll still be utterly alone at the end of any work you do. You’ll still be grieving and have lost everything. You’ll still have wasted years of your life and be a failure. What is the point? And people won’t suddenly treat you better than they have. I’ve been trodden on too many times now, I feel it’s my lot in life. And I don’t want to participate in that anymore. I want it over with. I honestly feel even DBT won’t help me at this point. I have no clue what would – because my problem is not just my mental health or that I’m grieving… it’s the people I had around me…. you can’t force people to care about you. I have nobody to care about me anymore. You can’t replace that. And without that, I can’t recover. This world is what is killing me. It’s the reason I can’t live in it. The people. My irrelevance. And everything people have put me through in the last few years. You can’t erase that amount of emotional trauma. And I can’t live in this world with all of that inside me. So tell me…… who do I turn to, to help me with that?

Bereavement counselling won’t touch it. Mental health services will see my mental health as complicated by grief, therefore signpost me to bereavement counselling. There is nobody in this world who can help with the scale of this problem. And even if there was… I wouldn’t believe they can help me. I won’t believe that I can be saved. How do you help someone like that? How?? I’ll always believe people will give up on me, if I don’t seem to be ‘engaging’ with their attempts to get me to help myself. That’s what it’s all about – I have to help myself. That’s what services are like now…. they don’t help you. They help you to help yourself. So what would they do with me? Write me off as the lost cause I feel I am? Or would they overcompensate with nauseating positivity…. ? I’ve had that before. You just feel misunderstood and invalidated. Either way I end up feeling a failure and a burden… like I’m wasting their time. I’m not even in hell anymore. I’m below that. I can fully understand why my friend made the choice she did four months ago, if this is the sort of thing she felt.

I have nothing and nobody to lift me out of this. There is no joy in life. No hope. Nothing. I really want to fall asleep and not wake up. I can’t exist in my head anymore. I’ve had enough.

And that’s without the political situation unfolding in this country now too. I don’t exist to anyone in my life… I’m invisible…. and now Parliament want to treat me as though I’m invisible too…. just overturn my vote, deny me an election and rob me of the one achievement in recent times – winning that referendum. I won’t say much on politics now, but it just destroys me that MPs are treating me just the same as everyone else. Like I don’t matter. I actually tweeted to the Prime Minister the other day, admitting that Remainer MPs are making me even more suicidal than usual. I’m usually quite restrained on Twitter, but that’s going now. I’m beyond the end of my tether. And the political situation is worsening my mental health at a dangerous time…. they’ve created an environment too toxic for people like me to live in… another reason to opt out of life. I just feel the odds are stacked against me, to survive. And I’ve lost the will to care.

 

 

 

Letter: I Did It For You.

Dear Liv,

 

So I did it. I went to see Westlife, without you here. A month ago I couldn’t have imagined going, not after losing you. I was fortunate to have a wonderful person and good friend step up and agree to come with me in your place. She was just the right person to go with. She turned something tragic and heartbreaking into something fun and uplifting.

 

Yes of course I was sad. I had my moments where my chest ached because you weren’t there watching them with me. But I really tried to make the most of it and enjoy it… for you. I hoped you’d be proud of me for going and enjoying it. I have never been as absorbed in anything before…. I was so into it that I almost completely forgot there was anyone else behind us. It was like our own private show. If I annoyed anyone behind me, or if anyone was judging me, I just didn’t care.

 

I sang, I ‘woo’-ed, I laughed until my cheeks hurt. I took way too many photos – I wish you could see them, you’d love them! Nicky was looking at me and I waved at him – he gave me a nod and smile – and I have someone to back me up on that this time! Nicky is my favourite – it’s decided… he’s the only one who’s ever acknowledged me out of the four of them. They all looked and sounded so great – even better than the last time we saw them.

The O2 has changed a lot…. there’s a shopping centre upstairs! The place we met before was no longer there. They have a dedicated merchandise zone. It’s all different. The checks were more formal.

 

We were stuck in a lot of traffic so we were running late. We were in the toilet queue with 15 minutes until Westlife came on – we missed the support acts… I don’t mind. I hate having to sit through things like that and pretend to appreciate it! We only just made it really. It was unbelievable being in the front row…. being that close to the stage. Knowing that in just a few minutes they’d be in front of us. I think turning up late was good in a way…. it stopped me having too long to really think about the fact you weren’t there. We kind of just went straight into the excitement and enjoying it.

 

I won’t say much about the show – I hope you were there with me, watching from wherever you are now… so I hope I don’t need to tell you. The medley was brilliant wasn’t it? The boys really seemed to enjoy it a lot more than in the past. I got utterly covered in confetti… as did my drink – couldn’t drink it as it got filled with little squares of paper! Money wasted! And the flames – so hot!! Did you see the Westlife babies…. the kids…. sat in front of us near the end, playing with the confetti? We think it might’ve been Nicole sat in front of me.

 

It was a special night. A bit of a blur – sometimes it didn’t feel real. There were moments I couldn’t take it all in. Times I let go and had fun. Times I held on to the locket and remembered you, saying I wish you were here. It all went too fast.

 

I had such an amazing night. I didn’t cry. I didn’t get home until 3am…. and didn’t get to sleep until 5am. I could hear birds singing outside… through the ringing in my ears. By this time the thoughts of you were creeping in, and the sadness. Looking at photos and videos… thinking you were meant to be there too. I had to go to sleep at that point, to stop this great night becoming something upsetting.

 

I miss you Liv. I wish you were still here. I miss having you to talk to about the show. If I share any photos etc. you aren’t here to comment on them or chat about it. That’s just the immediate impact of you being gone. When the hype about it all dies down, there are much bigger reasons I’m devastated you’re not here. You weren’t just about Westlife for me. You were my friend for over twelve years. You were my biggest cheerleader and my rock. That’s a much bigger loss than just not having someone to go to a concert with.

 

But I guess right now the main thing was getting through last night. I didn’t think I’d be able to. The last few weeks have been nothing but stress, on top of the crushing grief, of having to find someone to go with.

 

It turned out alright in the end. I went with someone I wanted to go with. Through the grief, the trauma, and also in the face of losing my best friend from my life, I went to see our boys, and I had the most fun I’ve ever had at a gig.

 

What happens after last night I don’t know. Today hasn’t been a good day. I won’t go into that here. I feel quite flat and down. Emotional. Delicate. Rejected. And like people don’t realise how big a deal yesterday was to me. The biggest thing of this year is over. The reason I had to keep going is over. It will be hard to continue on with life now. But I hope the good memories from last night will help a little on the difficult journey forwards. I hope you were with us. I hope you saw the show. I hope you saw me fight to be happy. And I hope I made you proud.

 

I hope you’re at peace now, wherever you are, my lovely friend. I miss you xxxx

Tonight.

*Suicide / self-harm / bit of bad language*

 

 

 

Seven years ago tonight I finally got the chance to meet you in person.

1 week from tonight I would’ve met you again.

1 month ago tonight you took your own life.

 

Tonight is a difficult night for me. For the combination of those reasons.

 

Losing you so close to finally seeing you again, and never getting to do that…. and it being so sudden… I felt I had to be at the funeral. I hope that was okay. I had to see you again. I had to say goodbye. I needed that chance. I shouldn’t have seen you at your funeral this week. I should’ve seen you at Westlife next week.

 

I’ll be honest I’m really struggling with this. At the moment I’m able to pour my focus onto the concert next week…. all my emotions are based around that…. my feelings of anger and bitterness are about being left with this problem, of having nobody to go with, and being annoyed with you for leaving me with this to deal with. All my sadness is about you not being there with me. I’m able to say you’ll be with me in spirit. Everything is focused on next Friday.

 

But I know that after next week I’m going to really struggle. There won’t be that focus anymore. After that there will be the eternity without you here. The thing my energy has been focused on… the reason I had to live for the last few months will be over…. I will then have nothing left and the painful reality that you’re really gone, and I will never speak to you again. I already feel that, but I think on some level I’m able to push that aside as I’m fixated on the concert and what to do about it. After that I have nothing to detract from the emptiness of grief.

 

Losing you isn’t just about having nobody to go and see Westlife with. Although if you heard me lately you would be forgiven for thinking that. It is the immediate issue for me. But it’s so much more than that. I’ve lost one of the best friends I have ever had. Someone who knew me, understood me, never judged me, supported and cared about me and was my greatest cheerleader. You never let me down. You never hurt me. You were my rock. One of my oldest friends. I knew you since you were a teenager…. over twelve years. I may not have seen you often. Some would say online friends aren’t real friends. How wrong they are.

 

I’m not claiming to have been one of your best friends. The loss I feel cannot compare with the loss those who saw you often would feel. But we knew each other for years. We had met. And more importantly we were to meet five weeks after you left this world.

 

Finding out how I did, by seeing people say RIP to you on Facebook….. I still remember that moment. It was like my heart was slowly being pulled down through my stomach. I was in shock. I was shaking, I felt sick. I told my family and after that it’s a blur. I couldn’t stop crying. I could hardly breathe. I just wanted to not exist anymore in that moment. I felt I had died too. I didn’t know what to do. I had to take medication to calm down. I couldn’t eat or sleep for a time afterwards.

 

It’s been a month. I’m still struggling to accept this reality. Going to the funeral probably helped. It made it real. But I still don’t want to accept it as a reality.

 

I had always feared losing you like that. I think somewhere in my mind I was concerned something like that would happen to you before I’d see you again. That’s why when you wrote your list of reasons for recovery I made sure to add our concert to your list… I had a fear you wouldn’t be here to see it. But I never truly believed you would leave us like that. Not now. I wish I could’ve stopped you. I wish I’d known. I never wanted to lose you. Of all the people I’ve lost from my life in the last few years, you’re the one I can’t live without. You’re the one I will never accept. You’re the one that hurts the most. Even losing my best friend cannot compare. She made that choice to abandon me. She was not a good friend in the end. Okay, right now I feel you made the choice to abandon me too. Deep down I know that’s not the reality. I know your illness just beat you. In time I will come to terms with that. But you never gave up on me. Not like my former friend did. You just gave up on yourself. You were a good friend until the end. The best anyone could ever ask for. No matter how much you were struggling, you were there for everyone else. I should’ve been there for you more. I will always regret that.

 

I will be selling your ticket and going on my own now. I will keep in mind what someone said to me recently – that everything I see you will also be seeing through my eyes. If I don’t go to the concert then you don’t get to see it. I have to go and try and enjoy it for the both of us. It’s not something I’m looking forward to anymore though. It was already going to be bittersweet for me, for reasons you knew. Now it’s so much worse. It really is true that nothing great can ever happen for me. There’s always something that destroys what little happiness I find. I’m sorry that sounds bitter and selfish, but it’s the reality of my life. I’ve never had anything good happen to me. This was something unbelievable. I was so excited – we both were… now look…..

 

This is what my emotions are doing right now…. circling through the ‘stages of grief’. And it’s what I mean about the distraction…. this concert is my way of channelling those emotions right now… God knows what I’m going to do with them once it’s over.

 

I know you may have thought you wouldn’t be missed. You may have thought you were easily replaceable. Sadly not.  You were the only friend I had left. The only person I had to go with. You had volunteered yourself for that responsibility of going with me. When you knew my friend had abandoned me and I didn’t know whether to get tickets or not, you said I could go with you. I got the tickets. And then you bailed. Now I have nobody and nothing. But like I said, this is bigger than a fucking concert.  I couldn’t give a shit about that really. I don’t give a shit about anything anymore. Life is death now. Life is pain. Life is something I don’t want to do.

 

This is the fact you’re gone and I don’t understand why. I can’t have closure. I couldn’t say goodbye. I can’t change the fact you’re gone. And as much as I can talk all I want to you, I will never hear from you again. The worst part is that life goes on. I don’t want it to. How can it go on without you here? It can’t for me. I have nothing left.

 

It’s a good thing I have the doctor in the morning…. not that she can do anything to help me. Nobody can. But at least it’s someone to talk to about how I honestly feel. I have one more week to try and not self-harm. After that I really don’t care what I do to myself. It was always going to be that way. The concert was the one thing keeping me going. After that I knew I was at risk. Now I really will be. I have no clue how my mind will behave after next Friday, when there’s nothing to hold onto, and the full extent of reality sets in. When my mind comes back to everything else – all the other destruction in my life that already existed before you left me.

 

I feel like I can’t breathe under the weight of losing you. I feel a lot less. I can’t concentrate. I spend most of the time not remembering anything and having to ask what day it is. I don’t enjoy things the same. I see no point in anything. I just want to punch holes in every wall I see, from the frustration of powerlessness, and all the loss I’ve faced recently, against my will.

 

I’m not okay tonight. I’m not okay any night. I’ll probably never be okay again. That’s the truth of it. I don’t think I can ever adjust to a life without you in it. I don’t think I can ever accept you’re gone. And I don’t want to.  You were nearly four years younger than me… you shouldn’t be gone. You should still be here. How can anyone ever accept the death of a 30 year old? You were the kindest, wittiest, gentlest, most beautiful and wonderful person to ever walk on this planet. I truly believe that. It’s not fair that you’re gone and that we all have to live without you in our lives.

 

Of course I will have to carry on and I’ll do so with a heavy heart, and the memories of you and the light you brought to a very dark world. You will become a part of my identity. I will try my best to live as kindly as you did. That is how we honour those we’ve loved and lost…. we keep their spirit alive in this way. But no matter how hard I try and how far I wander from where I am right now, I will never be ‘okay’ ever again. You can’t. Not after being touched by suicide.

 

As you said  about losing your mum…. life was split into ‘before’ and ‘after’. Now that’s how life is for me. Before you ended your life, and after…. life will never and can never be the same again.  I can never be the same again. I can never view life the same again. The loss of you has changed me forever. I don’t yet know what that change will look like. All I know is the innocence and hope I once knew has gone. Now there’s only darkness and pain, and a wish to not exist anymore. This is what ‘after’ looks like with you gone.

 

One week from now we would’ve been together, front row…. listening to the best band alive… reunited… them and us. Now I’ll be going alone, with the pain in my heart that you never got to see them again, and I never got to see you again…. not like I did seven years ago tonight…. because one month ago tonight you decided you couldn’t go on.

 

I’ve grieved a lot. I lit a candle for you in the cathedral. I went to the funeral. Yesterday I laid flowers for you locally. I’ve cried. I’ve shouted. I’ve collapsed on the floor. I’ve sat empty and numb, I’ve pushed myself to do things you would want me to do. I’ve done everything and nothing, and I’ve done it all alone. I have nobody now. So this burden of grief I carry alone. Many others are grieving for you, yes. Some will be more devastated than I am about losing you. I would never wish to make it about me. But I am alone.  Completely alone. And trying to deal with the consequences of your choice without any support or any friends.  I know that even if I had friends they could never understand how it feels to lose someone in this way, at this time. But to not even have that support there. That’s why I don’t want to live either. I have no safety net. I have nothing. I have no reason to live.

 

Nobody can help me. Nobody can take away the lifetime of pain and loss. Nobody can bring me happiness. Even if they did, I’ve learnt that the second I find happiness, something awful happens to destroy it. So why bother?

 

And with that I’m going to stop. No words could ever be enough to explain the turmoil I’m in right now. I wish you were here. God I wish you were here. I don’t know what to do without you.

 

xxxx

Nothing & Nobody.

*Mentions self-harm and suicide*

 

Nobody knows what it’s like to lose a friend to suicide.
If they do, they don’t know what it’s like that the friend was the only one left.
If they do, they don’t know what it’s like to have recently lost their best friend too.
If they do, they don’t know what it’s like to have been abandoned due to mental illness.
If they do, they don’t know what it’s like to have been blamed for the fallout.
If they do, they don’t know what it’s like to have been hurt by so many others.
If they do, they don’t know what it’s like to have not recovered from their first loss.
If they do, they don’t know what it’s like to have BPD.
If they do, they don’t know what it’s like to have to cope with all the above, alone, whilst battling with BPD.

 

Last week, my one remaining friend took her own life. Grief from suicide is a whole other ball game. It’s not like ‘normal’ grief. I’ve only had one other encounter with grief, when my granddad died two years ago. He had lived a long life and we saw it coming, for eight months. Death caused by age is devastating, but easier to cope with. I hadn’t coped with it… because due to medication changes at the time, which numbed my pain, my grief was delayed and I didn’t experience the full force of it until last year… when I was left to cope on my own. The only person there for me is the person who took their own life last week. Now I have to mourn the loss of her, without her support. Nobody can know what this is like, whilst in the depths of mental illness too. Nobody can understand what it’s like to be me right now. Nobody.

 

Losing someone to suicide is totally different to losing my granddad. It was sudden, unexpected and she chose to do it. So it kicks up a lot of different emotions – I feel guilty and ashamed to admit this, but it feels like she did it TO me. As much as I’m always the first to defend those who are suicidal, and know how they feel and that other people don’t enter into it, or that they feel others would be better off without them…  when it happens in your life, all of that goes out the window and you feel as if they made the choice, knowing it would cause you unbearable pain and not caring. I feel as though she knew I had nobody else… that I was hurting already and that this would leave me isolated and suicidal myself. So when people say I have to go on, for her, as she wouldn’t want anything to happen to me, I don’t feel anything…  as I didn’t want anything to happen to her either, yet she still did what she did. I don’t hate her. I never could. I feel so much sympathy and hurt for the suffering she must have felt to make that choice. But being honest, there is a degree of anger that comes with grief when it’s a suicide. But before anyone assumes anything, I don’t think she was selfish. In fact I know I’M the one being selfish for thinking about how this has impacted MY life. But it’s hard not to, when I was due to see her next month, and I have nobody and nothing left now. When my illness was bad enough already and I had started feeling suicidal again myself, and now it’s all I can think about. It’s hard not to become selfish about it and to some degree, to blame her for the mess I’m in. And to then feel guilty for blaming her. This sort of grief is complex and very new to me. Grief was new to me only two years ago. I hadn’t healed from the first time, so to now have a second person to grieve, and for it to be as intense as suicide – and to have to face that ON MY OWN now, whilst ill, it’s not something I feel I can get through at the moment.

 

In a moment of desperation I reached out for my former friend, through her husband, as she had me blocked. I didn’t know what I was doing at the time. I was in so much pain and felt so alone, I wanted to have my best friend back. I didn’t feel I could cope on my own. I realised the next day what a mistake it was. I was scared of what it might kick up and I knew I wouldn’t be able to cope with it right now. She unblocked me on two accounts and was trying to get a message to me. It never came. So a day or two later I decided I should never have reached out. Part of this was trying to hurt myself by isolating myself.

 

Anyway, after me showing this doubt and backtracking, she then blocked me again on both accounts. That hurt me massively. It led to me self-harming again in the middle of the night, and not really caring if I died. I didn’t want to wake up anymore. This was the sort of thing I knew I couldn’t cope with during this sort of grief. I couldn’t risk any more hurt.

 

It turned out she had texted my old phone, but my battery was out & my charger didn’t work anymore, so I had to borrow someone else’s to charge it up. Her husband encouraged me to let them help me. It was hard to do, but I did. And in some way it felt good. To suddenly have her caring, and to not feel like she totally hated me. But at the same time it felt very distant and empty. It felt like ‘this is all well and good, but I still don’t have my friend… and I’m not going to’. At the end of the day I was still abandoned. I was still hurt. And I got the sense that I’m still blamed. I’m still on my own, without support and I’m upset and angry about that.

 

I heard things such as it doesn’t mean things will go back to normal – and that made me feel like I’m being punished for a crime I didn’t even commit. I feel that they are blaming me for the state of things, and I don’t understand why. They shouldn’t be telling me that things won’t be the same now…. I should be telling them that! And my friend should be fighting for me and apologising to me. Why am I being blamed for being mentally ill, and abandoned as a result?? I also heard that nothing has been done to cause me pain, and that my friend is just trying to be herself. I still don’t believe that. I don’t believe the excuses. Certain things done this year have no possible explanation other than to cause me distress. Which they all did. And by hearing she was just trying to be herself, I heard two things. 1. Her ‘self’ is a hurtful person then. And 2. I stopped her from being herself, so I must be an awful person.

 

I know no harm was meant by these comments at all, but those along with the ‘things not going back to normal’, all made me feel worse… about myself, about my life… and caused more pain that I just couldn’t deal with.

 

Nobody seems to understand this. I’m out there on a ledge right now…. exposed…. alone…. with a decreasing number of reasons to hold on and every reason to close my eyes and fall. It’s not enough anymore for people to say they don’t want anything like that to happen to me. They are the very reason I found myself on this ledge in the first place. Now the only person I had left has taken her own life, and nobody can fix that. Nobody can fix me. Nobody can fix the damage done by these other people. If they don’t want me to go down the same path then they should’ve thought about that before abandoning and hurting me last year, when I needed them most. It’s too late to care now. Especially when that care is simply words. Is there anything they can do? Well given the chasm between us I’d say probably not. Anything I need from anyone would be asking too much of someone who doesn’t want to be my friend anymore. What I want is to have a best friend to support me. One who actually cares and will do anything for me. But that’s out of the question now. And even if I had that, it doesn’t erase the pain they caused me.

 

I don’t know how to cope with all this. Last night I had to take diazepam because I was awake at almost 3am, my mind racing, crying, feeling suicidal. In simple terms – I’m hurting because of my former best friend, and I need Liv to help me with that. But Liv is gone now. She took her own life. And I need my best friend to help me cope with that. But she abandoned me. I’ve lost them both, in horrible, traumatising ways, and I have nobody now. I’m having to deal with two major losses with no safety net. No support network. No friends. Nothing and nobody. Yes there are other people who talk to me, but if I’m being honest, as much as I appreciate their attempts to help, it’s not enough. I don’t have the close support I need. It all feels too distant. I don’t feel I matter to anyone. And even if others are there… Liv isn’t…. my best friend isn’t either. These are the things I want. I want none of this to have happened. I want my life back.

 

Professional support wouldn’t help. Medication won’t help – although at the moment I want nothing more than to be heavily sedated and knocked out… to not have to feel anything. Nothing will help because nothing can change what has happened. Nothing can erase the emotional scars it’s left me with. Nothing can undo the damage caused. I’m out of options. That’s why I feel utterly hopeless and that ultimately I’m going to follow the same path as Liv. It feels inevitable. Because I can never heal from everything that’s happened in the last two years. It’s too much.  It’s far too much pain and loss to cope with, and I have to do that entirely alone now. It’s not possible. There is no light anymore.

 

Not even the concert next month can help me through this now. Because the person I was going with ended her life. Why shouldn’t I? What do I have to stick around for now? I was so excited about it… we both were. I was finally going to see her again – a reunion with her as well as the band. Now I’ll never see her again. Now I have nobody to go with. I want someone who I know and trust to be there with me… not some random person. I’m having to go round everyone I know, begging them to come with me, and being rejected over and over – I have nothing against anyone saying no, it’s just it’s reminding me of my humiliating school days, and rejection is a big trigger for me with my BPD. My problem isn’t the people who are saying no, it’s the memories it’s stirring up, and how alone it’s making me feel…. it’s about how it’s making me view myself. I have a couple more to ask, but I think I can guess the answers, and then I’m out of options. I then have to either go on my own or not at all. People are telling me I should go and enjoy it, because Liv would want me to. How am I meant to enjoy it?? She’s dead. My world will never be the same now. How can life go on? How am I supposed to dance and sing and have fun, one month after she took her own life? In a few months maybe, when life has to return to normal…. but this is too soon. Especially as she was meant to be there with me. I wish I had someone supportive, who I trust, to go with me. It might make it more manageable. But the chaos of this, having to fill her spot and it looking increasingly like I’ll be going on my own, it’s making me look forward to it even less than I already do. So that one thing that was keeping me going all year is now a ‘problem’… so I’m less interested in keeping going.

 

After losing my granddad I didn’t feel safe anymore. Nothing felt certain. My mental health deteriorated. This made me feel even less safe. That’s why I needed my friends last year. My best friend then washed her hands of me, hurting me on the way out, and left me even less safe. And now losing my friend to suicide…. I’m now floating through the air, tied up and stuffed in a dark bag, with no clue how far I have to fall and what kind of landing it will be. I’m just waiting for the crash. And the worst bit is, I no longer care. I hope the fall kills me. I hope I don’t wake up.

 

Life has become too unreal and too real at the same time if that’s even possible. And I don’t want to be a part of it. It can only get worse from here. Anyone who says otherwise is lying and doesn’t know my situation. I have no way of gaining anything in my life anymore. All I can do is lose more and more. And all I have left to lose are family. I really couldn’t cope with that. I’d rather not be here myself, than have to go through more loss, alone. I don’t think I was made for this world…

 

Worst part is I can’t tell anyone how I feel. I have to pretend I’m okay. Because they won’t understand. They’ll invalidate how I feel. I can’t face that. I feel alone enough as it is. So it’s better to keep my mouth shut and suffer in silence. So that’s what I’ll do. To the bitter end.

 

 

 

 

Liv

RIP Lovely Liv

 

 

There are some things in life we so desperately don’t want to be true, and yet they are. On Wednesday night I learnt that a good friend of mine, Liv, had lost her fight with her inner demons, and had taken her own life. I will be writing about my feelings and grief separately, probably on my other blog about grief. I want to dedicate this post to Liv and the wonderful woman she was and will always be remembered as.

 

Lovely Liv,

 

My heart is completely broken. I can’t process the fact you’re gone and I’ll never see you again. I’ll never hear from you again. You were one of the best friends I’ve ever had. We only ever had the chance to meet once in this lifetime, in 2012, at the last Westlife concert we both went to. But I knew you for over twelve years… I forget exactly how long, but I knew you as long, if not longer than I knew my best friend. We were on a forum together – I adopted you as my ‘Little Sister’. Kiran was my ‘Purple Pot Plant’ and Lanny was my ‘Sparkly Donkey’. Oh such silly times! We bonded over our shared love of Westlife. We started a thread about them, and always defended them against those who said it wasn’t ‘cool’ to like Westlife.

You were always so supportive of me. I forget whether I was ever as helpful to you as you were to me. I don’t know if it’s normal to remember the love you received from someone, and to think you never did enough for them in return… We’d always chat about things, if not giving support then talking about Westlife – it was our shared hobby!

One day we decided to add each other on Facebook, and suddenly we could put a face to a name. You became a real person to me, and I to you. I remember you saying ‘You are very beautiful x’…. I just wish you could have seen your own beauty and what an incredible person you were inside and out. You called me ‘Lovely Lily’… to me you were and always will be ‘Lovely Liv’. I’m so sad I have to live the rest of my life without you here.

You always gave such brilliant advice if I needed someone objective to talk to, and you never once made me feel like a burden. You had such a giving, kind and generous spirit, that you’ll be remembered for… I just wish life had been kinder to you. You deserved the very best in life. It always rains hardest on those who deserve the sun.

You are the only person who was ever consistently there for me through everything. The only person who never once gave up on me. You always saw the good in me, even when I couldn’t see it in myself. You understood my illness and never thought badly of me for it. Thank you.

On the first anniversary of my first loss, you were the only person who said anything to me, to let me know I wasn’t alone. I spoke for too long about ‘nobody being there for me’, and because I closed my account at the time, I forgot that you were… I didn’t put enough emphasis on the fact that you were the only one there for me. I’ll never forget the part you played in my life and how you never let me down.

You were the one person who never made me feel invisible. You frequently said you read all my blogs and watched the videos I made. You kept encouraging me to write about my feelings – that my blog was my space to be myself and write my truth, and that others can choose to read it or not. Whenever I felt discouraged you would always know what to say to get me to open up again. I will keep writing, for you… I just wish you were still here to read my posts and talk to me.

I feel so alone now. After losing my best friend from my life, you were the one I was closest to. The one who talked to me and commented on things I posted. I feel empty without you. It feels pointless being online, as nobody talks to me… nobody will care as much as you did. I feel so lonely and broken, and I don’t have you to turn to anymore.

You were the one who helped me through my grief. You used your experience to tell me what to watch for, how to treat myself and to reach for help if I needed it. You were full of so much compassion and empathy, something I wish you could’ve shown to yourself more. I wish you were here now. I need your guidance and words to help me deal with the loss of you. I have nobody else to guide me through this. It’s new territory for me too. I’ve never lost anyone to suicide. It’s throwing out new emotions for me. It’s scary. I don’t know how to get through it, not without you.

I saw you in 2012 at Westlife, and I was set to see you on the 14th June to see them again, together this time… we would’ve been in the front row for the first time ever… we were so excited to be going together. You said you couldn’t think of anyone you’d rather be going with. I felt the same. Now I don’t know if I can go… not without you. You should be there. I have nobody else to go with now. It was hard enough to have to go and see them, as I used to go with my best friend… this would’ve been the first time not going with her. But I was okay, because I was going with you, another super-fan! Now I have to go alone or not at all. My life is very small… it’s been getting smaller for the last couple of years. I’m heartbroken you won’t be there with me if I go.

 

 

Liv (1)

 

I can’t believe how excited we were…. we were planning to meet before the concert to have something to eat or look around. The original plan was to find somewhere halfway between where we both live and catch up a few weeks before, but that changed to being on the day. I wish we’d met up now. I never got to see you a second time. And you’ll never see Westlife again. I know some would say I have to see them for you. That you would want me to go and to enjoy it… I just don’t feel that way yet. My world is in chaos without you now. I feel lost, confused and too broken and numb to look forward to something like that now. Just seeing about their tour makes me start crying again.

I’m so sorry that you were in that much pain to do something like that. I wish I had known. I should have known. But I was too wrapped up in my own despair – that I wasn’t really talking about either. My mental health had really slipped in the previous couple of weeks. I’m sure there must have been signs you were not okay. I feel so guilty for missing them.

I was in shock when I found out… I thought you were so happy. You were the happiest I’d seen you in a long time. You had your new job that you were so proud to have. You’d moved house. You had your partner and your doggy who you loved to pieces. It wasn’t fair that this had happened at the best time of your life. I couldn’t understand it. But that’s the thing with mental illness… we often can’t see what’s going on underneath it all. I have no doubt that you were happy. That was real. You’d found love, a purpose, a place in the world. Maybe your demons told you that you didn’t deserve any of it. Who knows? That’s the worst part about it. I’ll never know the reasons. Suicide leaves people with so many unanswered questions. It’s a different sort of grief. Nothing can prepare you for that.

Lovely Liv… you had such an impact on this world in your short life. I hope you know that. You can see it through the outpouring of grief and love online… on Facebook, on Twitter – you trended on Twitter on Wednesday… that’s how loved and valued you were. You touched so many lives and your passing has brought together so many people, with a shared appreciation of everything you are and everything you’ve done. All our hearts are broken as one. Your memory will live on forever. You were a great advocate for mental health and did so much work with the police, talking about your experiences of being detained, and your suicide attempts in the past. You only have to see the tributes from the police force and all those in the mental health community, to see how valuable you were to them, and they will make sure they use what you taught them, to make improvements in the future for others… that will be your legacy.

I wish this hadn’t happened. I wish you were still here. I’d do anything to have you back. A part of me is missing. You can’t ever be replaced in my heart. There will never be anyone like you. You had a fantastic sense of humour, you were a clever, beautiful, special and inspirational woman. I was lucky to have met you, and so proud to call you my friend. You gave me hope and kept me going. You were my rock. And I don’t know if I ever told you the words ‘I love you’… but I did, I do and I always will xx

You couldn’t find peace and love yourself in life. I hope in Heaven, with your mum by your side you find that peace, and know only love. I’ll miss you forever, and though it hurts too much right now, I’ll try and live for you, knowing you’ll be by my side and always in my heart. Rest in peace Lovely Liv. Sleep tight my wonderful friend, until we meet again.

Lily xxxx