Painting Suicidal Effects with Schizoaffective and Bipolar Disorder
Reader Question 4: Have you ever been suicidal? How did Robin Williams and his suicide affect you?
Suicide can, not only, involve the person who commits suicide, but the victims he takes with him. For instance, the shootings at Marysville-Pilchuck High School’s cafeteria resulted in the killing of one student and the injuring of four others. In the end, the shooter took his life. There needs to be better mental health conditions in our society. So much needs to be learned about suicide and mental illness, and not enough information has come out since the shootings at Sandy Hook Elementary. A lot of work needs to be done. I attempted suicide four times. I am not proud of it. I would internalize the situation, saying to myself, if I wanted to get back at someone, it wouldn’t be physically striking back, but to do myself in. For example, when I had a thought of suicide, and it was generally when I was off of my medication, I felt so useless and depressed. Trapped. Like I couldn’t breathe. I wanted to end it all. I wanted to do major harm myself. I never want to go down that alley again. I was fortunate that the times I attempted suicide, people extended their loving hands to save me from my wretchedness. I was given a second chance to live- they were there at the right time- the right minute. I had failed to prepare myself for the self-hatred, the miscommunication, and fights that brought on another incident that caused me to want to do myself in. I sunk deeper into an abyss of pity and guilt. I didn’t feel “right” in my own skin. Without seeking the help of professionals and medication for my schizoaffective disorder, I don’t know where I would be. I would probably lose control. I am stable now and see the beauty of being with people and maintaining my relationships, enjoying all the skills I have as a human being. Everything is so meaningful, my connections, the stars, the oceans, the animals, the NAMI Support Groups that are out there. I never want the dark experiences back. Suicide is so cold and heartless. We need to be on the right side of living. Robin Williams was an incredibly talented actor. He made me laugh and gave me a lift on my dark days. His death was a shock to my system. I thought he had it all put together. It affected me because my mom followed through with suicide when I was 40, and the ‘acts’ are similar. Hers and Robin’s deaths left me with an empty feeling. My mind ached. I had the sensation that I had just been hit by hard by an object in the stomach and it exploded. I was brought to my knees. Their life stories were left unfinished, untold. I felt guilty for trying to take my own life and remorse for my mother’s and for Robin Williams’s death. I am continuing asking questions like, “Why did my mother do this?” “Was she planning it all along?” “How could I have prevented it?” “Was I to blame?” I wished there was something I could have done to prolong hers and Robin’st lives and help them to escape this unwanted tragedy. My oil painting, ‘The Last Farewell.’