I have had a long life with mental illness. I will be 50 years old in a few weeks. The past 35 years should not have happened at all, because I should have died at age 15. I made multiple attempts to end my life, the first attempt was in 1985. I’ve always wondered why I never succeeded at killing myself. And I still rue the life I’ve had since then.
I really didn’t want much out of this life, because I believed I had already had enough pain and misery for a lifetime. I was groomed and molested by a pedophilic family member and became what he called his “girlfriend” at age 8. For two years, I was convinced that this was normal. The pain I felt and the secrecy he demanded were plenty for one little girl to process.
I had never heard of depression, or childhood sexual trauma, or anxiety. These things were never discussed in our house. I imagined multiple times what it would have been like, and what my life would have been like, had I told my parents. But instead, I played his psychotic games. I believed he loved me and when he told me I wouldn’t be good at anything else in life but giving sexual pleasure, I believed him.
I ended this sick “relationship” on my own, by convincing my parents that I was okay to be left alone at home while they visited this relative. By that time, I figured out that it was wrong. And I felt guilty for hiding 2 years of what he had done. Fast forward to age 15, I had already experienced the grief of “lost love”, and was bullied and ridiculed for years for being awkward and “ugly”. I truly believed I was a damaged human being, and deserved every insult thrown at me by my peers. For an added bonus, both of my first bosses at that age tried to get down my pants. I had to quit both of those jobs, but never offered an explanation to my parents.
It was then that I experienced the taunting and raging of my own voice in my head, and my bipolar illness dug its claws in deep. If this was going to be what life was like for me, I didn’t want it to continue. The only companion I had was in my own mind. And she treated me just like everyone else did. Cursing at me, belittling me, and enjoying me being stupid and helpless.
Can you imagine what life was like after multiple attempts at suicide, and always living thru them? Life was unfair and cruel, and I was a broken person. It’s almost laughable now at how many times I really tried to die and ended up on suicide watch in the psych ward instead. It was almost as if I was put on this earth to be miserable. Anti-depressants only helped for a little while, and don’t get me started on my choice of therapists.
I had no intention on becoming an adult. As far as I was concerned, I had no future. I didn’t have dreams or aspirations to become anything else but my miserable, broken self. I never wanted to marry. And, more importantly, I didn’t want to bring children into this world. I was afraid, even back then, that any kids I would have would be just as messed up as I was.
Fast forward again, 10 years this time. I was married to a classic narcissist and foolishly had 3 kids. Because he was so physically, psychologically and verbally abusive and manipulative, he broke the kids’ spirits, as well as mine. This seemed perfectly normal to me for the most part. When I would question why I would have ever birthed children into this madness, he would always turn it back on me. I was the one blamed for anything that went wrong. It couldn’t have been him, because he was perfect.
Suicide was always there. Every single day of my life, I woke up angry because I was given more heartbeats and breath for another day of living in hell. When I begged him to let us go, he refused. When I tried to leave with the kids, he would stop me. One time, I told him I wanted to die, and he handed me a butcher knife and told me to go ahead and kill myself with it & he wanted to watch. I will never forget the excited smile he wore that day.
Thankfully, the kids and I went to DCFS, and he went to jail. He has been out of our lives for 8 years now. All 3 kids have been diagnosed the same as me, with bipolar and ptsd. I have full custody of them. I made sure they have had medication and counseling right along with me. Since I’m a pro at having bipolar and also an empath, I know when my kids are not doing well. I guess having those extra senses are what saved us.
This is why I still believe I shouldn’t be here. And these 3 wonderful and loving and beautiful human beings in my charge shouldn’t be either. I love all three of them so much, but not enough to save them from a lifetime of pain and misery. They would not have had to go thru the hell of having a psychotic father. Nor would they have had to deal with bipolar and ptsd, alongside their mother. I feel like I screwed up life for all 4 of us. I have made their lives more difficult than they needed to be. And, simply, if I could do it all over again, I would have died at age 15.