I want everyone to know that this was written back in October, during the teenage suicide epidemic. At the time I was adamant that anything I write not contribute to the perception that Suicide is even an option. I didn’t want to continue the public discourse of it at all, and was angry that it had become a fad. Still, it brought a lot of emotions and dark memories to the surface. I wasn’t ready to share those feeling at the time, so I wrote the article and assigned it the arbitrary date of April 14, 2011 to publish.
The Following article has not been edited since it was first written save to add this explanation of its nature. It is very raw and rough in nature. The message behind it is not political or philosophical, really. It is here simply to be here, as a part of my voice.
Thank you for Reading,
M. A. Brotherton
This is a second draft of this article. The first one was angry, irrational, and mean spirited.
Instead, I’ve decided to open myself up again, and really talk about the issue that is pretty close to my own wounds.
I’ve been there. Pushed, prodded and poked to the absolute edge of my own sanity. Hated, judged and beaten for being different.
I am a large man. I’m 6’1″ and weigh in currently at a little under 350 pounds. I’m not particularly good looking. I suffer from some pretty common emotional problems. I’ve been afraid. I’ve been desperate. I’ve felt horribly and utterly alone.
I’ve sat in a room, at 19 years old, with a freshly sharpened knife, its fold out blade anodized black, and its handle emblazoned with a golden oriental dragon, and thought about using it to slice open my wrists and let my life poor out onto the dirty old carpeting.
To this day, eight years later, I’m still not sure why I didn’t.
The big secret, is that was not the first or last time I’d been in the same situation.
Yes, several times in my life, I’ve considered suicide.
When I was a kid, I was bullied pretty heavily for being a fat crybaby. They used to call me Fat Blubberton. Not the most creative demographic, fifth graders, but those stupid childish names have a way of really cutting into you. I hated it, but didn’t know how to handle it. I’m not sure what advice I would give a kid that was feeling that way now. I have, given advice to a suicidal teen. I’ve talked them down, and listened, and done the whole, cool older guy thing. I’m not sure that I really helped beyond giving them a distraction from the act long enough for them to chicken out like I had so many times before.
Its scary, thinking about it now, and admitting to myself that I ever felt that way to begin with. If you’re reading this, chances are that you are not an at-risk teen that needs me to talk you down. Chances are, you’re someone that has been there yourself, or you know someone who has been there, and you know how truly frightening the world can be. How alone we can all feel.
I wish, I could be an inspiring story of hope, love and redemption. I wish I could say that at the last minute I thought about my mother weeping over my casket and my father sternly trying to comfort her. I wish I could say that. I was way to selfish to think of it then. What I did think about, was if I would miss out on the next LARP event, or being able to finish the Wheel of Time series. I sat and thought about how much I could use a cup of coffee and a cheeseburger. I thought about the fact that I’d like to have sex again before I died. I thought about how much worse things could get if I didn’t kill myself.
No, there is no inspirational story here. I’m not some pillar of light and hope.
I’m just a guy, who’s been there. I’m a person that felt alone, desperate and guilty.
I’m a guy, sitting here, writing this now, because for no reason I kept on going.
I can’t promise anyone out there that life gets better. Sometimes it doesn’t. I can’t say that there will be some glorious symbol that will talk you out of it at the last minute.
I’m not saying that what you’re feeling isn’t real.
What I am saying, is this, I promise you, that its not going to make the problems go away. It’ll just make them worse for someone else, and that makes you a dick.
Don’t be a dick.