I'm tired of reading about another death by suicide. Knowing that for each one I read there are hundreds I don't read about, knowing that so many people are suffering.
Tired that mental health is massively underfunded in this country yet we can spend billions on bombs.
I'm heartbroken that we're taught to say nothing when we're hurting by a society that prizes false positivity. A society that, on the whole, would rather we ignore or bury our wounds than listen to them.
As a young man the only thing that would stop the fantasies of killing myself were drink and drugs. I couldn't tell anyone, I got fired from a job because my performance dropped. It dropped because it's hard to do paperwork properly when I'm wishing I had a gun to shoot myself with. I couldn't tell anyone I lived with so I suffered in silence. Then I drank and used to quiet the torturous scenes playing in my head. And this was a pattern. Use something, anything to stop the visions.
I'm tired of meeting people who have asked for help but are put on waiting lists. Tired that a broken heart isn't taken as seriously as a broken finger because it can't be seen.
There are many reasons Given To Live exists. One is to tell the hurting they matter. Because so often that's what we need most, to feel like we matter. But when we lose our voice and don't speak our suffering we likely won't feel like we matter. We have to feel safe, have to know the listener won't dismiss our story. Our broken hearts brake that little bit more when we hear...oh, that's not so bad...I had it worse...count your blessings, there's others worse off...put your big boy/girl pants on...the list of platitudes is endless. And they each hurt.
There is more mental health awareness than before. And there needs to be more. Much, much more.
For the last year the Foo Fam, a Facebook group with members from all four corners of the globe, has been supporting Given To Live.