Why I went to the bridge

How do you explain to your family and friends that one day you decided you didn’t want to exist anymore? How do you explain that a little voice in your head said that ending your life is the easy way out? For me this was impossible. I didn’t realise I was at crisis stage until I was peering off an 240ft drop. This day changed my life completely.  

I got out of bed clinging on to a glimmer of hope that just getting through it would be enough.

I awoke that day as normal, although my anxiety had been slowly building up,  I managed to get out of bed. In the back of my mind was an essay I knew I had to complete for university and that was stressing me out. I also planned to meet up with my best friend that I’d fallen out with in the evening to hopefully ‘clear the air’. So I knew this day wasn’t going to be easy, but I did it, I got out of bed clinging on to a glimmer of hope that just getting through it would be enough.

During that week a number of things had happened which had caused me stress, I got locked out of my bedroom in a house I shared with six other flatmates. I was desperately skint and had tried on multiple occasions to get extra help from the bank, but was constantly being turned away. I’d also recently got back into a toxic relationship, because I was too afraid to be on my own. This mixed with falling out with one of my best friends caused a minefield of distress.

I blended in and became one of these blank faces.

Despite all this I decided to crack on with an essay, so I made my way to the library. This particular library was pretty drab, plain walls trapped you in the space and there was a sea of blank faces working behind computers. Nevertheless I blended in and became one of these blank faces. I read over what I was supposed to do, but I couldn’t concentrate and every little noise was distracting me. I brought up a blank page and attempted to type, but words were becoming jumbled and I wasn’t making any sense. I could feel my heart starting to beat faster and my head starting to ache. I quickly packed up my stuff and left quickly, I didn’t know where I was going but I just knew I had to get out of there.

Why was I such a coward? Why couldn’t I just do it?

Next thing I knew I was standing on top of the Wearmouth Bridge with tears running down my face. I hadn’t replied to any of my boyfriend (at the time’s) messages but I didn’t care. I can’t remember how long I stood there for, but when I eventually decided to come down, this came with a battle of its own. Why was I such a coward? Why couldn’t I just do it?

It was raining, and I hadn’t even realised, how long had I been up there for? I made my way down the bank, I figured if I couldn’t jump to the bottom, I could at least walk down there. I took shelter under the bridge, still in tears, still no idea what to do. I was disturbed by a call from my friend when she sensed something was wrong. I told her where I was, so she came and found me. She was with two of our other friends, but I felt so embarrassed. I was soaking wet, stood under a bridge and I didn’t know what to do.

My mum rang and I told her what I was doing, so she immediately rushed over to come and get me. She told me that I needed to go to the hospital but she would take me to my flat first.

When I got there, moments later the police were knocking on the door asking if I was OK. My boyfriend had called them because I hadn’t responded to his messages. I reassured them I that I’d be OK, and they left.

I sat on my bed with my mum next to me, and she told me to come home and she’d help me sort everything out. In that moment I felt a rush of relief, I thought my way out would be death, but it wasn’t I just needed help.

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