Normally I wouldn’t pay much attention to what statistics claim. But what about transgender statistics? They draw a dark picture of what happens to about 40% of trans people. What they have experienced, or will experience soon. 40% – what’s behind that number? This is supposedly the number of trans people who have ever tried to take their life or succeeded in it. This number has accompanied me since the beginning of my open trans life. It is equally frightening and dissuasive. A curse and a blessing at the same time. Fortunately the numbers are declining. But if you are affected by your own, and your own experiences play a role, what is the use of such statistics? Would they change my personal condition? Would it stop me from doing so?
Let’s open the book
For the very first time I am publicly talking about the subject of suicide, and the way I see it myself. Only few know this aspect of my life. I have not allowed it so far. Who would voluntarily admit, that such thoughts (suicide thoughts) are constantly present. So was I. This subject has always been a taboo for me. Like anyone else I was trying to avoid to create any personal reference points to it. Statistics are anonymous, but I’m not. At least if I held any taboos, I would not be here. I break taboos and this is perhaps my biggest breaking of a taboo so far. There have been too many things that you simply shouldn’t do in my former life. But the phantom gets a name through me. It manifests itself and becomes tangible when one knows the person. It is me – Mycha. Yes, I have these thoughts. Not always, but too often to ignore them.
What does that mean now in this case?
Am I now on acute risk to take my life? Is this my last call for help before it’s getting serious? No, I do not think so. But regardless of that the matter is still serious enough. I have to proactively deal with it. Things like writing about it, and sharing that story with you, are good for me. I am also dependent on the support of others. People who are there for me now. Small people – like my own children, who mean everything in this world to me, and who need me as a parent. If they were not there, it would most likely be too late for me. Likewise adult people. People like my best friend, whom I will not name here out of respect of her.
But mouse if you read that, then you know that I mean you. I want to thank you, that you are there for me. Because you are a big part of the team ‘staying alive’.
My mother is also part of it. Even if we are going through a difficult time together. I hope there will be more reasons. Everyone in my life who is serious about me, and whom I let into my heart, can be one of those reasons.
Mycha – what’s that supposed to mean?
To be honest I don’t even know exactly where this thing here is leading us into. Just read on. I’m in my writing flow for now, and we are simply gonna make use of it. No more taboos!
For how long have you had these thoughts?
Since I live openly as a trans woman, but also in the years before. I often feel that I have done the right thing, but somehow it doesn’t work. Being a trans woman means that everything changes. For a person like me, who was used to that everything’s working, whether by skill or by chance, that was and still is a big disruption to that system. It is a completely new situation that I need to cope with. It makes me somehow worried. Fear not to make it. Fear of that I could give up. I’m afraid that this can finish me, and that I could give myself up. These thoughts have accompanied me for a while, to be honest.
What is the trigger for your suicide thoughts?
They are particularly evident when I feel left alone with everything. As so often. This is going on all my life. I was always accustomed to solve all the problems on my own. That is good for itself. You learn to cope with things, and find solutions that work without the help of outsiders. In short you become independent thereby. At the same time, you can watch how little you can expect from your environment, when it really matters. The feeling that you stand alone remains all the time. I was and still I am on my own. A human who gets along with everything. I never hoped someone would come and support me. This was never possible because weakness is not an option. As mentioned in previous articles. Weakness – that has meant to me that I can not do it alone. That was simply never me. Because I’ve always done it – somehow. Now that I am who I always wanted to be. I can even imagine now that I allow someone to help me. It took a long time to arrive at this point. It is an admission of weakness. Yes, I may be weak. I am allowed to cry. Previously unthinkable, but now this is quite common. I cry. I can cry. I’m whining constantly to be honest, and there are people in my life who are allowed to see it. I can release the sadness and sometimes the deepest despair. That feels good to be honest.
Have you ever tried it?
Everyone would say it was not the case, but I’m not like that. My attempt has been very long ago. Many years. Decades. At that time I jumped from a bridge into the river. I was just at the beginning of my twenties. At that moment, I was disappointed by my friends. I thought I had no real friends at all. The situation was quite clear and easy to understand, and then I just did it. I jumped. That the circumstances could actually cost me my life, was actually not because of the jump itself. The height was just about too small. In the normal case, this was not enough to die. The danger came from the cold. The water I was pouring in was freezing cold. Normally you are not able to swim in it for long. You quickly get tired after a short time and they you drown. That was not what I had imagined back then. I wanted to jump, and my death was planned to occur immediately by bouncing on the dark water wall. But it didn’t. Immediately as I reappeared, I was surrounded by icy cold water. The strong current tore me right away. The water sucked into my clothes and adrenaline was released. What does it do to you? It produced the feeling of having made a huge mistake. The survival feelings were immediately present at once. I tried to keep myself above water and not to drown. I was not a good swimmer. But at that moment I was there. I swam. Try to swim the direction of the shore. The current worked against me. Who knows what would have happened, if I had not alarmed the rescue forces before the jump. But I did. Luckily. They pulled me out of the water about one kilometer away from the place where I’ve jumped in. I would not have made it any longer I guess. Then I was brought to the next hospital, completely suffering from hypothermia. I could drive home again the same day, after convincing them, that I was not keen, to give it another try.
Do we have to worry about you?
Not for now, and not for the future. It is good to write down the whole thing. Like when a big load falls off your shoulders. I just feel very liberated and motivated and would like to wish you a nice day. If you are worried or just have questions, don’t hesitate to talk to me. I will try to answer openly, but do not worry about it, because if I wanted to do it, the least thing I would do, is to write about it. I now set myself points that lie in the future, at which I re-evaluate the matter from time to time. So far this has worked quite well for me. The wish to continue to live becomes stronger every day. Those who have already done so, know that we have to take special care of us. We do everything to feel good – really everything.
Take care of yourself and seek conversations, and you will find that everything makes sense. Free hugs, your Mycha