A Personal Reflection on Attempted Suicide and the Lessons Learned

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I know it is tough. Sometimes because of tragedies, circumstances, or situations, you can slip into a really dark place – but you can’t give up.

Salaams to everyone, suicide is indeed a touchy subject as we all may have been impacted by it one way or the other. I can only speak from my personal experience as I don’t have a medical background.

My suicidal thoughts began when I was a teenager. Honestly, this whole school thing is so much pressure these days for kids and young adults. People in their adult life commit suicide, so how can young people even begin to understand yet alone cope with all the daily pressure? I wonder sometimes.

Having grown up in a wooden house, and not being able to dress nicely or spend lavishly has taught me a lot in life. I learnt to budget and do without but that didn’t come so easy to me. I was laughed upon because of the snacks instead of food I had to eat, because of the spoilt and torn clothes that I once wore, and not being invited to parties or hanging out with the “cool” people in school. Can anyone relate?

Sometimes this is enough to drive anyone to think about harming themselves. Pressure at school and then the pressure at home. When will it all end? Is there a way out? I often wondered if there was a better life for me somewhere else. What should I do?

I hated my life so bad. I was failing my midterms and I was given a poor predicted final year grade from one of my teachers. I guess I deserved it at that point in time. I was really depressed. Oh yes, not forgetting my poor social life or the dating scene. Boy was it messed up. Filled with teenage gossip and who has the “hottest” boyfriend or girlfriend. Do you all remember those days?

I really couldn’t cope with my daily struggles anymore, so one evening as I attempted to do my homework that I knew I was going to fail, I swallowed ten tablets hoping not to get up the next morning. I arose with a really bad stomach pain and vomited after. I said nothing to anyone at what I attempted to do, nor what my thoughts were at that time. People would label me as being weird – but how could you understand what I am feeling.

I think a month later, I attempted it again. This time I swallowed fifteen tablets, hoping that it would work this time around. But it didn’t. I think I just caused more internal damage to myself. I was afraid to go to the hospital as I would have to give some answers which I didn’t want to expose myself.

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It was at that point, I realized that I was not successful for a reason. Maybe someone above wants me alive more than I want to be alive. I stopped having any more suicidal thoughts as I knew that it would again turn out unsuccessful.

To this day, I still suffer from stomach problems but it’s my own fault. A lesson well learnt the hard way. As I reflected on it later on in my life, I soon noticed that my neighbors and teachers knew that I had a hard time but did they really assist or did they contribute to the problem. Surprisingly, I got a distinction in the same failing subject.

I moved ahead in life to help others through volunteerism. You will be quite amazed at the impact you can have on someone else’s life. I won local awards for my volunteer work. A very proud moment in my once very disturbed life.

Having no money at the beginning but just a small childhood dream, I reached year 1 in my doctorate program at age 33, something I never thought was even possible but I never gave up. I didn’t finish my doctorate but it was a dream well pursued. This is not me boasting, this is me trying to give others inspiration.

I know it is tough. Sometimes because of tragedies, circumstances, or situations, you can slip into a really dark place – but you can’t give up. You need to find your inner strength and hang on, you are worth it, Ameen!

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