TRIGGER WARNING suicide and sexual abuse
The first time I tried to commit suicide I was five years old.
I was walking to the bus stop, for kindergarten, with my siblings and some neighbors. I saw a car drive by and thought, “If you get hit by a car you die.” This didn’t make me scared or excited. I just calmly came to the conclusion that if you automatically die when a car hits you, then that’s what I wanted.
I stopped walking down the sidewalk and turned to look back up the sunny California street. Another car was coming. Feeling only serenity, I walked into the road, arms relaxed at my sides, and waited for
Death didn’t come for me. My oldest brother, Graham, ran into the road and pushed me out of the way. He wasn’t hurt either. It was so long ago I can’t remember if I was mad at him or just took it in stride.
Let me give you some context, our neighbors in Washington state had started abusing me sexually when I was three. It turned to rape at four. Then they started letting other adults have sex with me. I was a child prostitute when I was in their hands. I was too young to understand that we had moved far away from those evil people and that I was temporarily safe. I say it was temporary because we moved back to Washington a year later, right back to our old neighborhood. The abuse intensified when I returned, but that’s another story.
My point is that, like so many other survivors and victims, I had been tricked. I had been made to believe that my parents wanted me to be abused. That no one cared what was happening to me. That I would be killed if I told anyone. I believed I had no other escape. It lead me, at that precious age, staring down traffic. Certain that death was all that could end my misery.
While that wasn’t my last attempt at suicide, the attempts aren’t really what I want to focus on. It’s the reason for them. The reason so many people come to that same conclusion. We feel we don’t matter. That the abuse will never stop. That no one wants to help us. That no one can help us. But that is a lie!
It’s important to know that we matter. And sometimes it doesn’t feel like we do. Sometimes we truly are in danger (as I was in Washington), but that only means we need to fight harder and be braver. If the person I’m writing about is you, I want you to know that you matter. You don’t deserve the pain you are going through. It is NOT your fault. You matter to me, although we’ve never met because we are in the same group. The group of people who think about suicide and even try it. The people who have survived multiple attempts. The people who are turning to it for the first time. We all have a bond and it makes us matter to each other. So yes, you matter to me.
I realize this blog post doesn’t apply to everyone. If you’re not suicidal please share this message, or write one of your own. You never know who has been through what. It could save a precious life.
If you are feeling suicidal or you believe you are in danger if you try to escape your situation, please call the appropriate number for your country listed below:
1-800-273-8255 or dial emergency 911!
0300-123-3393 or text 86463 or dial emergency 999!
Wikipedia List of Suicide Crisis Lines in case you need a different country or number.
Feel free to reach out to me in the comments section or to reach out to others. If, like me, you have lost friends or even family to suicide. I weep with you and feel the loss deeply. Time does heal a lot. And what it doesn’t totally heal, it mends. Please know your worth. Thanks for reading this post. I’ll see you in the comments section.
NOTE: I will be on vacation starting Thursday, so there will not be a blog post next Monday. But I will be back the week after that! 🙂