Yesterday my psychologist suggested to me that I am “addicted to suicidal thinking”. We did not get around to fully explore this, but I would like to post the question if this resonates with anybody. If I understand this right, it’s a “process addiction”, that is: an addiction not to a substance, but to an action you keep doing which short term provides relief from pain or even joy, but long term is destructive. Examples are gambling, shopping, sex addiction. In my case, because something/somebody in my past robbed me of my sense of self, of my ability to feel joy, of my ability to feel empowered and free, I get this relief/joy/etc by thinking/phantasizing/dreaming/planning about suicide.
When contemplating suicide I have control to some degree, I feel I can control the time and way of my death, and I can stop pain and fear.
Like with any addiction you need a stronger and stronger dose, and where phantasies once were sufficient, I now am at the stage where nothing is good enough but the real thing. This past weekend I very nearly killed myself, and I know I am capable of because I years ago I did a (very serious) suicide attempt.
When my psych first suggested it it freaked me out, but thinking about it, it sounds more and more true. It scares me because I know that addictions are not really curable, only manageable. It sounds freakish, and I don’t think it’s common. I googled and I could find plenty about “process addictions”, but nothing like being addicted to suicidal thinking. Does this resonate with anybody?
Just to put this into context – I have two sons which are the reason why I am struggling so hard against following through with my suicide wish. If it was not for them I would have died already at least a year ago. If it was not for them I would commit suicide right here and now, that’s how strongly I feel about it. I accept in principle the right of anybody to take their own life, but with the limitations that we need to consider the consequences for others. In my case the pain and destruction I would cause for my children outweighs my own pain – for the moment. I cannot bear the thought that they would suffer the way I do. I would love to hear from anybody who can relate to that.