Thinking about killing myself

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After sunset there is a time of darkness, then a new dawn

You may be reading this because you are thinking about killing yourself. You may not understand where these thoughts come from, or it may be you feel you are trapped in a life that has become intolerable and suicide feels like the best solution. Either way these thoughts, feelings and urges are hard to talk about and even harder to live with.

Don’t take them literally.  Suicidal thoughts and feelings are often a message from our unconscious that something is intolerable and needs to end, indicating a need to change something about your life. We get stuck when we believe things cannot change, but this is seldom the case. Often what holds us in that intolerable position is a set of beliefs, behaviours or values that no longer serve us. Perhaps they did once, but as time has passed they become impossible to support.

For example, Emily believed she had to be nice to everyone and please people. All her time was taken up caring for others and sometimes she would despair, have thoughts about killing herself, then feel guilty that she had those thoughts. Taken literally, Emily might kill herself to escape her situation. If we look at the part of her personality that needs to die, her pleaser, then things change – by learning to care for herself, rather than just for others, Emily gradually felt better and the thoughts diminished then went away.

Listen to the messages your unconscious is sending you. Often you’ll need professional help to do that, as the thoughts and feelings can be confusing and hard to understand. If you can find out what needs to end or change, then that can release you from those feelings.  It may be that you feel your situation is intolerable and won’t change, due to an injury, disease, chronic pain or the loss of a loved one. In that case you may need support to grieve your losses and adjust to a different life. Change does not have to be tangible and external, where we seldom have any control. The change required is most likely adjusting an attitude or belief, or the way you feel about yourself.

Counselling can help deal with these thoughts and work through them.  If they are intruding into your life then contact me.

If you are thinking about killing yourself today the call the Samaritans on 116 123.

I work as a counsellor and coach in the Hungerford and Marlborough area, and also via Skype and telephone.

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