Share Your Story
Hearing about others' experiences can be helpful when dealing with death and bereavement. Do you have a personal experience that you'd feel comfortable sharing with the campaign? If so, let us know...
I attempted suicide in 1988. I am now glad that I failed, for life has become much better for me since then, in spite of a diagnosis of mixed bipolar disorder.
I am unlikely to be 'cured' in my lifetime. I am 63 years old. This is not so much a story as mention of issues on my mind about death and dying.
When I am unwell, among other symptoms, I suffer from 'thought overload', and thoughts of death and dying, both my own and others in my life, predominate. I often think of how I would like to try again and be more successful. The main things that hold me back, and keep me alive are fear of failure again, and wishing not to cause loved ones pain.
Like many people (I think?) I am concerned about the manner of my death, and would rather choose the method than have something unpleasant, like a disaster, for instance, happen to me.
If I tried but failed again, I wish that people would recognise my right to end my life, and would not resuscitate me or take steps to prolong my life. Mental health problems do not kill in themselves, suicide is sometimes the only way a sufferer can escape the pain.
One aim of mental health professionals should be (probably is) to prevent clients from getting so ill that they contemplate suicide. When they successfully bring a client back, the illness and suffering are no less. I have not made a written plan yet. If I were to do so, my mental health professionals might consider this as a step towards planning my suicide, and I could end up being sectioned. But I think I should have the right to decide enough is enough, just as someone with a terminal physical illness.
The Dying Matters Coalition is led by the National Council for Palliative Care,
the umbrella charity for end of life care in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
Freephone 08000 21 44 66