On never giving up

I’ve been going through in my head reasons not to kill myself. I’ve read through your posts, your fun-sized advice, anything that seems to mention this even slightly. . . and the one thing that sticks out to me most is that the most important thing–the only thing that matters–is never giving up. But how do I even get this kind of strength?


You will eventually find the strength inside yourself. You will. I promise. Right now though, you need to get the strength from other people. This isn’t something you should be doing by yourself, and that’s okay.

What I’m saying is you need to seek some professional treatment. You just do, and that’s okay too.

I don’t know your circumstances or where you are in the world, so I can’t really point you to any specific mental health care resources, but you’ve got the internet. Please use it to find some help.

And yeah, you’re right. The most important thing is never giving up.



25 thoughts on “On never giving up

  1. Mel V. says:

    Depression and its relatives are huge fucking liars. They tell you that things are terrible and they’ll never get better. They’re wrong. It’s terrible now. It doesn’t have to be terrible forever. Getting better is a hard road, with lots of backtracks and false starts, but it’s absolutely possible.

    I wish I could give you a taste of what it’s like to be happy and content. When I’ve been there, it’s so wonderful that I’d randomly start crying with joy because I’m free and I’m happy and life is actually good and I never thought that normal would be so wonderful. I’m on a backtrack right now, but now I know what it’s like to have myself in charge instead of the illness. Suicide isn’t even on the table. I’ll chase that feeling for the rest of my fucking life if I have to, because I know it’s possible and I know I can get there again. So can you. Come with me.

  2. Margo says:

    One of my best friends is in this same place right now. I don’t know if this is applicable or helpful to you but this is basically what I told her: you’re in a really massive amount of pain right now and that is not normal and it is not permanent. It is very real, but it will not last forever. You haven’t felt this way forever and you won’t feel this way forever. Like the previous commenter said, depression lies to you. It makes it really hard to think and hard to breathe, it is overwhelming. It’s totally normal and reasonable that you don’t want to feel that way anymore. But you can get through it, because it will let up. Depression ebbs and flows and right now you are in the hardest spot. If you have health insurance and you’re not seeing a therapist, go to your health insurance website and find one that is covered. If you’re not on medication, consider medication to help. If you don’t have health insurance, google “free mental health counseling __your area___”, often there are non-profits or clinics that will have more affordable options or be able to help you find something. The national suicide hotline number is 1 (800) 273-8255. Like coke said, don’t weather this alone. It’s incredible how much speaking to someone else can ground you, how it can relieve a little of the pressure that makes it too much to bear by yourself.

    Edited to say, more specific to your comment, strength is… a lot to ask under your circumstances, which is what it feels like which is why you wrote that. Thinking about it not as strength but as inertia might be easier. the rock in the middle of the river isn’t resisting, it’s just sitting there. eh?

  3. Perspectivator says:

    Definitely seek help.
    But try probiotics; take them for a couple weeks.
    I was suffering from a severe infection and depression. After being given very strong antibiotics I thought I was going to die. I started taking probiotics from a couple places and drinking kombucha. I am so much happier right now that I felt pressure to tell you this little story. So maybe that’s how the bacteria are going to control us, or maybe it’s just important to have good gut flora. Give it a shot, falls under the category of “not likely to hurt.”

  4. dime-sized-amount says:

    I’ve lost a lot of people to suicide and I love people for whom suicide is perpetually a live question. Coke is right, you need strength from other people. I understand that depression makes it really difficult to trust other people, and that means sometimes one needs the structure of a professional situation to support that thing that has gone slack in the world.

    Get through this. When I lose someone to their own hand, it makes it harder to find reasons to stay mine. I swear, we really are in this together.

  5. Mellifluous says:

    Since you didn’t put much about your actual situation I can only hope this advice brings you some kind of clarification.

    I’ve been there. I’ve know that jagged, horrific hole that feels like it’s eating you and I know what it feels like to embrace it and hug it because the light seems so damn far away that it’s either illusory or just not worth all the effort it’s going to take to reach it. It’s a lie. The depression and the black hole are liars. Big ass liars.

    Second to that, I had a plethora of well meaning loved ones around me who simply did not understand and spent copious amounts of energy explaining that I just needed to try harder, be tougher, be something. Listen to me: If you have those people in your life, they mean well, but they are wrong. They are all the way wrong. Go get help. Right now. Make the call TODAY. If you have to cut the cable, eat beans and wear Wal-Mart then do that if that’s what it takes to afford the help you need. You matter. Just you.

    If you need meds, take the meds. Tell anyone who wants to equate “you just need a hobby” with the meds to kiss your ass. Take the fucking meds for however long you need. See the therapist until you believe you no longer need the therapist and she/he agrees with you and know that you may need them again in the future and that is perfectly OK. Determine right now that you are worth whatever it takes to be your kind of normal. No matter what that looks like, you’re OK and you matter. Period.

  6. JC says:

    Dear OP,

    I am so sorry you are feeling this way. I have been there many times. I play a little trick on myself when this happens, which is that I decide I can always kill myself tomorrow, next week, next month, after a trip, etc, etc. There is no rush, I can always kill myself later, but what I can’t do is unkill myself. I keep pushing out the horizon until the clouds clear a bit from my head.

    You have the right to your feelings, and you have the right to feel like ending your life. You even have the right to act on it so far as I’m concerned. However, just keep giving yourself a little more time, push it off a bit more into the future. You can make it through another week. And then another one. I know you can. You don’t have to cope with everything that’s weighing on you right now, you just have to keep buying a little more time and then a little bit after that.

    Love and sympathy,

    • I think I may have read a letter about this on here before, but I take a similar approach.

      I am often suicidal due to bipolar disorder, seasonal depression, and a lot of seriously bad situational shit I have going on. I have a couple of ideas for how to do the deed, but I haven’t actually gotten to the point of a plan.

      There have been times I’ve come close, but at that point I come to a realization. A lot of my issues are dread and terror over what’s going to happen in my life. But if I’m about to give up completely, then I have nothing to lose by sticking around for another day to see whether it happens. If it does, I can always kill myself then.

      It gives me a weird kind of comfort. So much of my current situation is out of my control, and I feel so helpless and frightened. This gives me some control.

      But that’s just a stop-gap measure. I’m between therapists (one thing that’s out of my control), but at least I’m on medication that helps. A recent dosage adjustment has made things better.

      And every day I do realize that I have more strength than I thought. Over a year ago, I thought I was at the end of my rope. It’s gotten steadily worse, but as I slip down, I always seem to discover more rope. I honestly don’t know where it comes from. I would never have believed I could tolerate things being this bad. I don’t know if or where the rope ends, but my goal right now is just to hang on tightly enough that I can stop myself from falling just a little longer until the meds and therapy can help me start climbing back up.

      • JC says:

        I’ve gotten closer than I’m comfortable with. There was the time I went gun shopping and found the store had (thankfully) closed. The one that gives me the creeps was the time I got the euphoria, where all your problems feel lifted away because you know they will be gone soon. I somehow brought myself back to reality, but it was scary as hell.

        Hang in there everyone. I just keep reminding myself that life is so short anyway that I may as well just fucking deal. Of course, I’m probably cutting years off my life through “self medicating” and so on, but we do what we gotta do.

    • Aletheia says:

      “I play a little trick on myself when this happens, which is that I decide I can always kill myself tomorrow, next week, next month, after a trip, etc, etc. There is no rush, I can always kill myself later.”

      I do the same thing, really. Nowadays, I find my mind focused on suicide (either as a general idea or an option for me) during my curse/period and during winter (due to undiagnosed SAD, probably. Can’t be arsed going to the doctor to find out when it’s occurring, and can’t be bothered getting help for it when it passes, which is really stupid, I know). I end up making deals with myself to not seriously pursue any harm. Like, “it’s just hormones now. Wait a week and a half and if you’re still feeling like this, THEN you have permission to seriously think about anything” (which never happens nowadays) or “wait until your first flowers bloom; if you’re still feeling like this then, then you can do whatever you want.”

      It’s not foolproof, but it did get me through a very dark decade or so, so… I suppose that’s good.

  7. MI says:

    About 4 weeks ago as I was falling asleep I thought, this would just be better if I fucking killed myself. I haven’t thought/felt that way in years. That was my depression screaming at me “Pay attention, you are in trouble and need some fucking help.” I recognized that I was depressed, just didn’t realize how badly. I hied myself off to a therapist and my primary care that same week, as I am fortunate enough to have that kind of coverage.

    You are not alone, help is here, keep hanging on. I used to parlay the idea of what would happen to my cats if I wasn’t there as a reason to stay alive. Use whatever helps to remind you that there are reasons to be here even when it sucks and is painful. Because with work, it becomes less painful and then you start having days that feel wonderful.

    • I feel that way sometimes. What helps me is to think about the nature of existence vs. non-existence. We have a physical existence now (or at least a perceived one), and for all we know this is our only chance to have it. Perhaps we have another sort of existence outside of this one, or perhaps there’s nothing.

      If this is our one shot at a physical existence, then we need to make sure we wring every bit of pleasure out of it that we can. This could be some sort of cosmic reward or fluke that allows us to experience beauty through all of our senses. Why else do we have them? Maybe the pain we feel at times is just the price we have to pay for it. And you never know how much love and pleasure is in store.

      If you give it up, you don’t know what you might be giving up in the future that could make up for all of this now. Nothing aside from this life is certain, and since we’re all headed into the void eventually anyway, we might as well go along for the ride and find out what’s next only when we have to.

      I’m suicidal at times myself, and I still have to work damn hard at hanging in there. But I’ll take any extra incentive I can get to stay.

      For me, the answer is whatever hedonism I can afford that doesn’t hurt me or anyone else. Good food, good music, good sex, good drugs (I’m very selective here – nothing dangerous or addictive). If I don’t have access to all of these, I do as many as I can.

    • Charlie says:

      @Ellie: When you wrote that “if it’s not worth it,” what did you specifically mean? I’m serious.

      Whatever that looks like to you, what smaller steps can you do to get closer to that vision? If one strategy doesn’t work, go for another. Keep laying it on. Dying is the farthest step away from obtaining whatever “worth it” looks like for you. Even if you don’t obtain a carbon-copy perfect version of it, your continual striving for it will change you as person. Inside and out. Stronger. Better.

      And if you don’t know what “worth it” looks like yet, that’s okay. Or if you had to recently reevaluate what your “worth it” ought to look like, that’s also okay. Plenty of reasons out there that are “worth it.” Whether it’s pre-planned or in the form of a surprise, those reasons are waiting for you to uncover them someday.

      Allow yourself time and space towards this work-in-progress. You deserve this opportunity as much as anybody else. Others can also offer suggestions or help (heck, just check out all of Coquettes’ previous posts – there’s a gold mine there). Yeah, doing all this does takes some vulnerability and effort, but hey, you did an example of this just now by posting your earlier comment on here. Same goes for the OP’s question. Don’t give up, and no, you don’t have to go at it completely alone. Perhaps it’s too obvious to say this, but Coquette and others (including myself) think you’re “worth it.” The fact that our responses to you even exist on here indicate this. Hope you realize this yourself, someday.

  8. Al says:

    I started taking testosterone injections a while back, they’re on a 14 day cycle, but essentially, it leaves my system on day 10. I feel better than I have ever usually felt for the first nine, but then I can mark the tenth day down reliably as a day that I will be suicidal all day. I asked a doctor I saw (resident, doesn’t know me), if my dosage/shot schedule can be modified, because it’s basically a day gone a week, and she said if I’m probably not actually going to kill myself, they don’t want to change the shot schedule, and I should consider not transitioning. Cunt.

    ANYWAYS, the point (and I swear there was one) is that I know whenever it happens that the feelings, as real and awful and painful as they are, will not last forever. It’s only a day, so it’s easy enough to tell myself that, but remember, the bad feelings are not a real part of you, and they are not forever.

    • Charlie says:


      Emotion are not equal to, nor the only part that makes up a person’s entire identity or future. They are just one facet to an otherwise complex concept.

    • Find out if your insurance will cover Testopel. I’d guess probably so, since my husband is on Medicaid and his was approved. He used to use testosterone gel, but that’s kind of annoying since you have to do it every day. The Testopel is in pellet form; they insert them under the skin of your thigh, and they last for around four months. So you only have to deal with it three times a year.

      My husband says that the only downside to them is not being able to have sex for the first week.

      Do you have an option to switch to another doctor? I absolutely would. There is no justification for allowing someone to be suicidal just because you’re “probably” not going to kill yourself. WTF? It only takes one time!

  9. Joe says:

    But what if you don’t have feelings anymore? It’s not that you feel too much you just don’t feel anything, it’s hard to aim towards anything because it’s all just equal nothingness.

    • Margo says:

      That numbness is pretty common with major depression… a mental health professional experienced with major depressive disorder should be able to give you tools to manage or work around the nothingness. when you say aim, do you mean for a therapist or for not killing yourself or something else?

  10. JC says:

    Out of genuine curiosity, would everyone give the same advice if this person was looking for a euthanasia situation? If they wanted to die because they would eventually and would rather do it on their own terms without the suffering.

    I realize the implications of this, that it’s a very fine line especially because to most people with depression and/or a mental illness they are suffering greatly… but all the same…

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