I have not had the greatest of lives. I grew-up without a mother, without friends, without help. I have been through hell and back in my eyes. I hear voices in my head, they are not really talking, but they are doing even worse, they are laughing, at me. It was just a week and a half ago that I attempted suicide again. I took 52 antihistamine pills. Enough to kill me, yet I wouldn’t die! I have no idea why, but I ended up in my school's Guidance office, seeing people that were not real, hearing things that were not there, feeling the fatal effects of the overdose. I was a mess, a complete wreck! I apparently talked to my guidance counselor, I don’t remember talking to her, but I was told I asked for help. They called the paramedics and police. It took seconds that seemed like hours, for me to realize what was going on. I was rushed to the QEII Halifax Infirmary via ambulance. My parents were not contacted until 45 min after I arrived. I am 18 years of age, and my name is Christopher.
It was at the hospital that I finally admitted I needed some serious help! I was desperate to find an end to my issues, and suicide by any means was the only thing running in my head. Just end it quickly, was what I was thinking. I still have those thoughts even as I write, but I have learned to cancel them out somewhat, at least enough to talk about them. I was admitted to the IWK hospital the next day, where I was placed into the 4-South psychiatric crisis program. My first impression of it was like being in prison. Security everywhere, key-card locked doors, surveillance cameras, even an isolation room! But I was safe, and that’s what mattered. I wasn’t the only person there, but to me, it felt like I was at first. Alone in my room to think about my thoughts, which I feared the most, and my family reluctant to see me in that kind of shape, as was I reluctant to see them, NO I was more shameful to see them!
This was when I met Taylor. He had been at 4-south for 7 months. How he did it, how he survived 7 months, I have no clue, but he listened and he understood me. I felt cared for again. The staff were so caring, so understanding, but this didn’t heal my issues. I had some personal demons clawing at my back, and I had nothing to fend them off with! I had no escape! I began to feel angry at myself, and at the staff in turn. It took 6 security guards to put me into their "time away room" (basically a solitary confinement room) I still have the bruises and cuts to prove that. It wasn’t their fault that I got hurt, I hurt them too, even kicked one female guard in the arm, they only wanted to keep me and others safe. I spent about an hour in that room. Kicking and screaming at the plexiglass window and the nurses behind it. They hadnt checked my pockets thoroughly enough though, I had my belt and a set of ear-buds. I attempted to strangle myself with both. The Protection services had to cut the ear-buds off my neck. All I wanted to do was die! All I wanted to do was end my pain, to find solace, to find peace and calm to the storm that was my mind! I didn’t succeed. And I am grateful that they didn’t let me do it! I was discharged the next day, I had spent a week there and I didn’t feel safe leaving, yet they said I had to go. I was so fed-up with it all, that I left my clothes and such there. And I left. I walked around downtown Halifax for about 4 hours. Lost in my thoughts, and deeply depressed. I sought escape again! I couldn’t face my parents after all that happened! I headed for the MacDonald Bridge, the only bridge with a cat-walk. I was ready to jump, ready to end it all from what I believe to have been 200-300 feet in the air! But I had a sane thought right before I tried. I grabbed the emergency phone on the support column, but I couldn’t get the stability to talk. I let it hang there. Not shortly after the bridge patrol was driving down the opposite side, and then they flashed their red and blue lights. They pulled up beside me. They asked if I was the one who pulled the phone off the holder, all I could do was nod my head yes. They asked if I was alright. I said no. I told them that I was going to jump, and they radioed the EHS (emergency health services) and the HRP (halifax Regional Police). They continued to talk me down, all the while I felt so stupid, so foolish for doing it, and embarrassed as passerby's looked and peered to see me, like an animal in a cage. I walked down the cat-walk, hood up in quiet shame and regret of not jumping, the ambulance and police waiting at the end of the bridge. I was brought back to 4-South. This time I was prepared to go home, to face my issue, not hide from it like a scared kitten. I didn’t get to sleep until about 4am the next day after the bridge stunt. That was mainly due to my mind racing and the voices screaming at me in my mind. I left 4-South the same day, and I will tell you this, I miss it, not because of WHY I was there, but HOW I got out, I had someone to talk to, someone who would listen. Thank you 4-south! I am a new person now. You dont know how much this means.
- by Chris D., age 18