Don’t Call Us Crazy
Suicide Attempt No. 1
Ok here we go….This is definitely the hardest blog I’m going to have to write – I’ve had the page up to start it many times but got no further. You might think by the headings that I’m being flippant about what happened but believe me I’m not – it’s just that I’m now in a position to talk about it and put my humour into it because we are past it.
I decided to try and find some stats about suicide in the transgender community which was a difficult task in itself. There are so many! The figures below have come from The Scottish Trans Organisation which is considered a reputable source. The full report is definitely worth a read as has some very interesting statistics in it. So as you can see from the report they conducted in 2012 – almost 70% had or knew someone who had attempted suicide because they were trans or their trans history – shocking or what! This came from a study of 889 people in the UK. You can read the full report by clicking on this link.
Ok so back to Kirst and myself. Straight to the point I attempted suicide by taking a huge amount of various depression and sleeping tablets and painkillers. Its difficult to remember some of what happened as I was slipping into unconsciousness but Kirst basically panicked and reacted in a scared way and didn’t know what to do continually saying she couldn’t deal with it. I knew I had taken a serious amount of tablets as 2 years prior to this I had taken tablets before and this time I had taken a lot more.
Still panicking Kirst got a large kitchen knife and sat in a corner on the floor and was going to cut her wrists with the knife. I don’t think I believed she would actually do this but I couldn’t take that risk. By this time I was hardly awake and slurring my words but I managed to dial 999. They made us ensure the front door was open and advised the ambulance was very close to us so shouldn’t be long. However, Kirst saw the ambulance outside the flat and kept asking on the phone why they weren’t coming up. After about 10 minutes they did come up with the police – evidently because I had mentioned there was a knife the ambulance people were not allowed to come up without police support. The last thing I remember is the ambulance men getting me downstairs and then I remember nothing at all until I woke up in hospital around 12 hours later.
It turns out that Kirst had to stay at the flat talking to the police because of the knife but that was all fine and she came to the hospital the next day. I asked to be discharged that day and was in the evening after having a quick talk to a doctor. So why did I do it? Well first I’d say that I’m not embarrassed that I did it as so many people suffer from depression and if it runs in the family it can be worse and loads of celebrities suffer from depression – even Stephen Fry attempted suicide and who would have thought a person with his intelligence and career would want to do that! He downed pills and vodka in his hotel room in 2012 – thank goodness he’s still with us – you can read more by clicking here.
Stephen Fry: “I took a huge number of pills” in 2012 suicide attempt
I was finding living with Kirst extremely difficult – not realising she herself was suffering from depression.I couldn’t take anymore of the OCD stuff – I felt she just got at me all the time she was home for not doing something – there was always something! Although she was full-time at work, she didn’t seem to want to go out at the weekends – never feeling she looked convincing enough. The way I felt was that she didn’t like the fact I had other priorities (i.e. my kids) and put them first and couldn’t always be at home. It was like someone with a mallet slowly tapping me down and down that’s the only way I can explain why I did it.
Suicide Attempt No. 2
So now it was Kirst who decided to attempt to commit suicide. I think both times of her and me we probably couldn’t tell you what we were arguing about directly before doing it. We must have been arguing though as Kirst went into the bedroom with her laptop which she would do if we’d argued and I’d just leave her there until we both calmed down. I realised she was down over the past weeks so something triggered in me to go in and check on her, which I wouldn’t normally do. So doing so, I found her on the bed with a load of tablet packets around her now empty! Great I thought I’ve now got to deal with this and it was the night before we were moving house the next day!
I knew she hadn’t taken a seriously dangerous level of tablets – only comparing to the number I had taken in both my experiences – and the fact she was still talking – although talking nonsense and slurring. I knew I could have kept her at home and slept it off probably but clearly that was a major cry for help and as most trans know you don’t get any help hardly with the NHS so I thought this might be a trigger to get the help so I rang 999. She was walking around and talking but making no sense at all by the time the ambulance got there and they took her to hospital. I rang her parents and thank goodness they were amazing support and helped me move house the next day whilst nipping to the hospital to see Kirst in between trips between our old flat and new house. Looking back I have no idea how I got through that day! Kirst was totally out of it for most of the next day but yet again didn’t get any help or referral for further help from the NHS – what a complete waste of time they are with the transgender community – its a joke! So she was discharged later that evening and thankfully she does have a great GP and she prescribed her stress/anxiety tablets and sleeping tablets which have helped in the interim. Why did she do it?
Well this was how everyone saw Kirst – happy, bubbly and confident! You couldn’t have been more wrong! The work aspect of full-time was going well and the fact all her mates pre Kirst (mainly male) had said they would stand by her and support her was great. However it turned out that something not so nice went round her old mates and despite them not even asking Kirst about it or how she was they just dumped her and didn’t contact! Well I guess that shows they were never true friends – that really upset her and I believe this was the main reason for the suicide attempt along with the fact that nothing was moving forward with her transition – still waiting to hear from Sandyford!
If you are not transexual yourself I don’t think you can appreciate all the things that negatively impact on your life. Here are some scary results from the Gires survey:
Fast forward to now and although we both have our moments of up and down we are generally moving forward with some other positive things happening which I will update in another blog – as this one feels it’s gone on forever!
If only the NHS would take notice of how serious the lack of support for this group of people is definitely having a negative impact on the person themself and the people around them. Shame on them!
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