By this time I was seventeen, and had various other things going on in my life. I met a girl called Becki who suffered seriously with self harm, cutting much deeper than I ever had. It was at this time I first understood the concept of being ‘triggered’. After seeing deep cuts on her arm one day, I went home, removed the blade from one of my Dad’s razors, and holding my arm over the kitchen sink, made the first cuts that, little did I know, would stay with me for the rest of my life.
As soon as I had made the first cut, I couldn’t stop myself making another, and another. The longer I went on, the deeper they were, thankfully not deep enough to require stitching, although having them stitched would probably have improved them aesthetically in the long run. At this point I knew nothing of going to A&E for self harm related injuries – it didn’t even enter my head. I had, however, entered the world of steri-strips, bandages and micropor tape. I also remember at this time, taking to my arm with a piece of glass, the scars from which I also still bear today.
As it was the summer holidays, I was spending a lot of time working outside for a local farm on a casual basis, with long days, but I was enjoying it. I had met a man called Matt, who had taken me on a few dates, and although he had a girlfriend who was working in the USA at the time, I was still very anxious about spending time with him due to my long term issues with intimacy. On this one day, I arrived at the farm, to be approached by the owner, who looked angry and determined. He informed me that I had to leave the premises and the police were on their way, because I had started a rumour that Matt had raped me. This was a complete shock to me – I had said nothing of the sort – and it was only later I realised it must have been a ploy to get me out of the way ready for the impending return of his absent girlfriend. I ran from the farm and got on my moped, only to find the tyres had been cut. Despite this, I drove it into the city – a twenty minute journey – to the home of Hilary, the lady running the farm, someone I had become close to over the previous months.
After becoming close to Rachel, and that relationship fizzling out, I found myself getting close to Hilary. It was almost as though I was actively seeking out a mother figure, maybe because of some maternal instinct lacking in my own mother. Looking back, I truly felt like I loved this women as my own mother, and maybe that was what I needed.
The opened the door with a face like thunder, and asked me why I had lied. I tried to explain that I hadn’t, how confused I was as I had no idea what was going on, but all she could say to me was that I should go to the police station and hand myself in. In despair, I drove to the police station and told them that I had been accused of saying I had been raped, and that I didn’t know what to do. The police told me that if they had been advised of the situation, the first person they would have called would have been me, to make sure I was ok. I drove home in disbelief of the whole bizarre situation.
As I arrived home, my phone rang, it was the police, who advised me that because their was insufficient evidence to charge the bus driver, he had been released.
I cannot explain to you what went through my head at that very moment. I think this piece of information was the final straw on my tower of cards that was really to topple. I went into the house, feeling thoroughly upset, and unwrapped the bandages from my arm, ready to cut again. It was then, I had a change of heart, and went to my room to find the prescription pills that I had. I took them, plus some anadin from the cupboard, but it didn’t seem to do anything. I then decided, because it wasn’t working, to take all that I could find, which included more prescription pills, some pills belonging to my mother, some more pain killers, and some that I didn’t even read the label. It was only a few minutes later than I began to itch, all over, but especially my feet. I then began to feel drowsy, and had an overwhelming urge to lie down on the kitchen floor, as it was so cool.
By this time, my mother was running her business from home, and I knew that staff came into the kitchen from time to time. Looking back – I clearly knew I would be found – if I really wanted to die I would have done it in my bedroom and locked the door – I wouldn’t have been found for days as my parents were away on holiday.
The next thing I knew, I was being sick, and I could hear Sue, a lady who worked for my mother at the time, in the background phoning for an ambulance. I was blue lighted to the nearest hospital and spent the night in the CDU. The next morning, I was seen by the on duty psychiatrist, who asked me why I did what I did and whether I was going to do it again, to which I replied I was unsure. My sister arrived to take me home and stayed with me overnight, until my parents arrived home. I will never forget the voicemail I recieved from my mum, screaming and crying down the phone about the fact that she could have come home to find me in a coffin.
When I think back to that overdose attempt I realise that it was not an attempt to end my life, just simply another attention seeking exercise – why else would I place myself somewhere where I would obviously be found? This need for attention is something that has bothered me for my entire life. Why was I so desperate for attention? Was it my fault or was it something in my brain that was damaged or mutated?
I think back to when I started secondary school. My sister (quite a bit older than me) split up with her boyfriend a d came to live at our house with her two young children. She is my half sister, so had never lived with us before, so as you can imagine my dad doted on her. I felt completely pushed out and ignored, but I am sure, looking back now, it wasn’t as bad as it felt. Two years later, when she moved out, my half brother moved in, in similar circumstances, and received the same treatment from my dad. I can only assume that this may be part of the reason why I sought attention so dramatically, although I know the behaviours were present well before this time.
It was quickly becoming obvious at this point there was something much more worrying going on in my head above and beyond clinical depression with anxiety, I just wish I had had that one person to stop me and find out what it was.
Take care. X