What does suicidal ideation look like for you?

Chris-duck

MyPTSD Pro
I have zero idea right now whether I intend this as a support thread or just for my own info thread, so yeah.

If you experience SI, what does that look like for you?

For me it is more of a "you shouldn't still be alive, you should kill yourself" which I can (obv successfully make myself STFU about) but most people describe it as a "giving up" thing.

Which is weird to me cos I tend to get it more when I'm *not* giving up, so my SI jumps in to counteract my lack of giving up or something.

It always *sounds* bad, because I know how and where I hypothetically would, but I've known that for like 20 years and haven't acted in about 10 years. And have no intention of acting, it's just really exhausting when my brain is like "no? Don't wanna live? Don't think you should? Here is a perfectly formed suicide plan I prepared back in 2010 just in case."
 
Last edited:

Freemartin

Sponsor
I have two kinds of SI.
1) really impulsive step in front of a bus thing
2) long-term life is just not worth living thing

The first one comes most often after a therapy session, when I’m leaving T’s office. I think it’s related to kinda snitching or somehow opening up about something I ”shouldn’t” talk about. It’s this almost knee-jerk reaction to going somewhere that feels dangerous. Defying some ground-rule-type assumptions. Often related to my parents and whether or not they are to blame.

The second? Creeps up slowly when I’m getting depressed. It’s full of distorted thinking and I’m constantly sort of trying to solve this riddle of life being worth living or not. I just can’t see any reason to keep up this miserable excuse of a life. And I’m in constant pain, so I can’t see why I would want to go on living. So I start making plans to not.
 

Chris-duck

MyPTSD Pro
Are you looking for answers from anyone who's experienced SI, or just people experiencing SI right now?
Doesn't have to be current. So anyone who is, or has ever, experienced SI.

Looking for how it looks to them, not for coping skills, cos I have a lot of them (that work as far as the not dying thing goes)
 

Sideways

Moderator
Daily, habitual SI for me is recurrent, intrusive thoughts about wanting to be dead. One step further than not wanting to be alive, but actually wanting death (when I was younger, the thoughts usually stopped at not wanting to be alive). These thoughts are habitual in the respect that I experience them daily often at predictable times (when I wake up, it's usually one of the first thoughts I have each day), but also occurring more spontaneously and frequently when my mood is lower.

Problematic SI for me encompasses a much broader range of thoughts (sometimes with accompanying behaviours) most often persistent, and harder (or, I have less ability) to disengage from, such as:
Taking an inventory of how it would impact people that I have any kind of connection with, how to minimise that impact;
Going over pre-planned methods and details in minutiae (it's very easy to screw up);
Making actual plans (time, method, etc);
Planning what items to purchase items and what items to throw out (that I don't want people to have to deal with);
Persistent and recurrent intrusive thoughts about self-loathing;
Thoughts about my safety plan (such as: can I do that, do I want to do that, what happens when I do that), and
More generalised thoughts with helplessness and hopelessness themes - these are harder to identify - they can be anything from "more therapy isn't going to help", to taking inventories of what I've tried and what options are still available treatment-wise, to simply "I can't....(insert any activity or responsibility here).

Personally? I think intervention is appropriate for both kinds, although the kind of intervention required for me is different, depending on where I am on the SI spectrum at the time.
 

ruborcoraxxx

MyPTSD Pro
I first become a ghost and start to think of myself as a ghost. That no matter what happens to me, I’m a ghost and I’m invisible. So why bothering. I’m already dead. I’m a ghost piloting flesh, what’s the point. the rays of the sun feel nice on everyone but this is the world I do not belong.

Then as @Freemartin said there is the random adrenaline panicky rush of SA/SH. That for me goes more to the form of picking a fight. I did have this several times where I just started hammering myself against the walls and cars and after a moment my ex contained me and made me promise we would go home and that I could sleep. So did we. The week after I tried to jump off a bridge. I didn’t clearly intend to. It was just all so painful I felt possessed but I held back last minute.

Actually, to be entirely fair, I think I was expecting that at some point D would kill me for good and got used to that idea. Or that one of us would die, because I still did fight back as much as I could.

Getting out of that relationship really was important. But I don’t think I could have had these bursts without the "ghost" impression and the impression that whatever happens, it doesn’t happen to you. And when it goes past that barrier then the pain is so unbelievable it’s your body that decides to rip apart.

I generally don’t speak like this sorry. This is really sinister.
 

Chris-duck

MyPTSD Pro
wanting to be dead. One step further than not wanting to be alive, but actually wanting death
I'm kind of neither, like don't want to be dead necessarily, it's more that I'm fine being alive, I just *shouldn't* be alive.
Taking an inventory of how it would impact people that I have any kind of connection with, how to minimise that impact;
Going over pre-planned methods and details in minutiae (it's very easy to screw up);
Making actual plans (time, method, etc);
Planning what items to purchase items and what items to throw out (that I don't want people to have to deal with);
Persistent and recurrent intrusive thoughts about self-loathing;
Thoughts about my safety plan (such as: can I do that, do I want to do that, what happens when I do that), and
More generalised thoughts with helplessness and hopelessness themes - these are harder to identify - they can be anything from "more therapy isn't going to help", to taking inventories of what I've tried and what options are still available treatment-wise, to simply "I can't....(insert any activity or responsibility here).
N this is weird that you consider this problematic SI, not for you, cos I'd probably consider it problematic for other people.
But it's kinda my baseline? Like "this is how, where n when I would.. if I was gonna.. but I won't, I should.. but I won't".
And I'm always aware of what I'd sort for other people, n feel generally blah about stuff
Not sure I'd consider it a big deal though in my case, so that's why it's weird to me, it's my baseline, like that's me *pre* problematic. Not to minimise that obv, just weird cos yeh, apparently it's just got normalised in my dumbarse brain.
 

ruborcoraxxx

MyPTSD Pro
for other people i always worry how they’d find me. I don’t want to leave a corpse. In these moments the idea is to vanish leaving a letter. Or a very clean corpse. Difficult to achieve. I just wouldn’t like to be found.
 

Sideways

Moderator
it's my baseline
This^^^ doesn't necessarily mean this...
Not sure I'd consider it a big deal though in my case

Thing is, living without these thoughts? Which you may not have experienced yet, is bloody brilliant! I've experienced that a few times. And life without these thoughts as a constant? Heeeeeeaps better than life with them.

Is it a big deal? I don't think that's the right question. Could you life be profoundly more meaningful and enjoyable if you were able to live without them? Definitely. And that's why we persist with recovery.
 

whiteraven

MyPTSD Pro
Daily, habitual SI for me is recurrent, intrusive thoughts about wanting to be dead. One step further than not wanting to be alive, but actually wanting death (when I was younger, the thoughts usually stopped at not wanting to be alive). These thoughts are habitual in the respect that I experience them daily often at predictable times (when I wake up, it's usually one of the first thoughts I have each day), but also occurring more spontaneously and frequently when my mood is lower.
I lived for decades like this. Constant, intrusive suicidal thoughts. Wanting to die, wanting just not to be anymore.

For the last, hm...two years, maybe, the suicidal (or other intrusive thoughts) are more reactive than anything else. So...something bad happens, or the depression is especially bad, and I want to not be anymore.

Now, I still sometimes think "I wish I were dead," but I catch myself every time and ask, "do you really?" It isn't that I want to die; it's that I want to feel better. I want to have a healthy relationship with death, to not seek it out and to not be afraid of it.

Very, very tough.
 

FauxLiz

Sponsor
For me SI is like one of my constant companions, it is always there, I always have multiple different plans/methods at my disposal and is probably the most consistent thing in my life. At it's strongest, like right now it is when I get to a point of utter exhaustion. I am tired, tired of fighting, tired of being strong, tired of holding it together, just tired. And then comes the shame and guilt of not being able to get past whatever it has brought me to this point, of how my suicide would impact others in my life. And when I get to the point that I act on my SI, I am beyond tired, beyond shame, beyond guilt and tired of continuing to live so that others don't hurt.
 
Top