I ask him how he’s doing, and he replies that he’s not good. He says that he is debating whether or not he should talk to me… I’ve been waiting for a text from him for weeks. And he can’t even decide if he should speak to me. Me, the person who has loved him for over half my life. Me, the person who thinks of no one but him, who always understands and forgives and is gentle and comes when he calls no matter what I have going on....He doesn’t know if he should talk to me??
It hurts. What else can I say?
But I don’t tell him that. I tell him that he can always talk to me. I tell him I am here for him, anything he needs. That I hate knowing he is in pain, and I wish I could help make things better for him.
He says that the pain he is feeling is most likely self-inflicted. He is nothing if not self-aware, albeit a little too hard on himself most of the time. His pain certainly is not ALL self-inflicted, but a lot of it is. And he goes on to say that he plans to “put a stopper on it tomorrow” - but doesn’t elaborate.
It could be anything. But I figure it’s one of these three:
- He plans to “put a stopper” in the figurative bottle of whisky that represents his alcoholism
- He plans to end his relationship
- He plans to end it all.
I assume it’s probably the first option, but it’s never safe to assume. Not when he has confided in me about past dark thoughts. The fear that he will someday see no other way out. I can feel a heavy weight in the pit of my stomach when I think of it.
So I have to ask. I apologize for being forward or dramatic, but I ask him if he has any plans to harm himself. And his response?
“I will do what’s I feel is right, if that is what you’re asking”.
Vague but not enough to put my already-worried mind at rest. So I go all in. I tell him that I often think of the night he showed up at my door, in tears, and as I held him in my arms he told me about his thoughts of standing on the bridge over the river downtown. He tells me and he cries. We cry together. I cry because I can’t imagine losing him, I can’t imagine him feeling so much pain, and because I have had the same thought so many times… And have been closer than I’d like to admit. I tell him that every time there’s a report of a suicidal man on the bridge, or a water rescue, I scour the news page for info or a description or anything to make sure it wasn’t him. It terrifies me.
He tells me that he still has thoughts of standing on that bridge.
And that he knows he has a lot waiting for him in life, but that it would be so easy to just not have to think about it all anymore.
I feel that deep down in my bones. They’re not wrong when they say often suicidal people don’t want to die, they just want their pain to end. And usually, they can’t see the light at the end of the tunnel, or they don’t have the strength to hold out until it comes. These days, I am struggling to see the light on the other side. I can’t see anything good happening in my life, and certainly have nothing much to hold onto now. My days are spent wrapped in the ideation of ending it all and throwing in the towel for good. One of the only things tethering me to this planet, is him. So what happens to me if something happens to him?
I tell him I understand and have had that feeling too. I tell him that he is cared about and worthwhile, has so many things to live for, and a ton of time to figure it all out. I tell him that things will get better, and that he will feel better. This is not forever, it’s only temporary. I tell him that the world would be a shitty place without him, and that I certainly wouldn’t want to exist on this planet if he weren’t existing here with me. That I would rather hold his hand and jump than live a day without him - regardless of how infrequently we talk now.
I tell him everything that’s been swirling around in my brain every time I hear of someone on the bridge. I tell him everything that I would want to hear - that my best friends couldn’t even say to me after I expressed what a dark place I was in recently. No one reassured me, no one told me I was worth a damn. In fact, my friends ghosted me. And I wasn’t even as forward as R was with me. So I know how much it hurts to not feel understood, or to carry that dark secret and those awful thoughts and half-baked funeral fantasies inside around you. All I want is for him to know he’s not alone.
He read everything I had to say, but stopped responding in the early dawn hours. I sent him a final message of encouragement and as much hope as I could muster, and hopefully he will read it and believe it and be in a better head space today and know that he is worth so much more than all this.
I wish I could hold him. I wish I could rub his back until he falls asleep, whispering in his ear that it’s going to be ok. That he is loved. So, so loved. And that I will protect his heart with my life. I wish he would let me. I wish I wasn’t a decision that had to be made. I wish I wasn’t the bad decision, or the wrong decision. I wish I was the right one for once, an easy decision. The only decision. Because he is my only decision. There is no hesitation, no weighing my options. He is the one I want to talk to, to see, to be around and with. And I know that I will probably never be any of those things to him… But I hope he knows that he is to me.
I feel so helpless. Like there’s nothing I can do but wait. And wonder. And worry. And hope. Should I do more? I don’t know what I even could do at this point. I hope someone in his life cares as much about him as I do and watches over him for me. I’m glad I said what I did though, for whatever it is worth.
I’ve already all but lost him in the present-day, my soul will split in two if anything ever happens to him.
I don’t know how I will ever sleep again.
Love of mine, someday you will die
and I’ll be close behind, follow you into the dark
No blinding light or tunnels or gates of white
Just our hands clasped so tight,
waiting for the hint of a spark…
If heaven and hell decide that they both are satisfied
And illuminate the no’s on their vacancy signs
If there’s no one beside you when your soul embarks
Then I’ll follow you into the dark… 🖤
-death cab for cutie
Last updated September 18, 2019