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Question for damaged people. If you suddenly got the perfect life, would you recover? Or would you screw it up again

by thebends

Suicidal thoughts come in 2 forms. One is if you feel trapped by external forces (poverty, bullying, bad luck, loss), and the other is if you’re trapped by your own internal issues. It’s the 2nd one that I’m wondering about, those of us whose minds are so hopelessly scrambled by trauma or self-loathing or whatever led us to this point.

If you’re in that category, then suppose everything else in your life became perfect. You found your perfect soulmate, you got a great job and promising career, a reason to live, all that stuff. Could you make it work?

Or would you end up right back here?

If you think of what led you to this point, it’s probably not just 1 thing. It’s probably not just 1 bad decision or 1 bad defeat. It’s probably a pattern of life that has come to define you. And if that’s the case, then even if you suddenly got a clean slate and all your problems were fixed, your own mind would repeat the same pattern and you’d replay the same life.

I see it a lot like cancer. You can get chemo or surgery and send it into remission, but your body will always be predisposed to relapse. In cases of cancer you’d have to radically alter your diet, exercise, lifestyle and attitude in order to stay cancer free. But with mental health, it’s not as easy as deciding to change and doing it. Our mind itself is the cancer, and you can’t surgically remove that.

I’m just thinking these thoughts because I’m actually getting a second chance at life. Call it a string of overdue good luck. Things are finally falling into place. But no matter how many good things happen, I wake up every morning hating life and wanting to end it. It’s like I’m diseased from the inside out, and no matter how much sunshine shines on me, I’m a tragedy.

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14 comments

thehusk 5/25/2020 - 9:56 pm

I don’t think a ‘perfect soulmate’ makes logical sense for me. But hypothetically, I suppose one of the qualities of meeting such a fantasy person would be to make me happy by satisfying my need for connection.
If I was actually really happy, for the first time in 20 years, maybe I could make it work. I don’t know what that’d be like. If my dysfunctions have their roots in my unhappiness, do they stick around when it leaves?

I do know that without a sense of peace and contentment, you could pass me any number of promising opportunities and I would squander every single one. I’ve thrown away endless fresh starts and second chances – because however much my circumstances change, my mind stays the same, my emotions stay the same, and I don’t know how to function with them.

Maybe you have to start with the emotions – what long suppressed needs still aren’t being met?

Hazy Day Sunflower 5/25/2020 - 10:00 pm

Makes perfect sense to me. It’s just me. I don’t think I function normal.

thebends 5/26/2020 - 7:50 am

@thehusk I share your skepticism about “soul mates”. In fact when you get right down to it, the concept of a truly fresh start isn’t very logical either. But like you said, hypothetically, there might be a fantasy scenario that makes us happy.

I’m just wondering if we’d still figure out a way to sabotage happiness, because that’s the way our minds have been trained. We see it all the time in relationships where someone fearing commitment will sabotage any possibility of allowing their partner to get close. Do you suppose that sort of thinking can infect our entire lives to the point that we will sabotage happiness itself?

Happiness is a lot like a relationship. It carries the burden of maintaining it, the fear of losing it, and the insecurity of being dependent. Those of us who have suffered a lifetime are probably similar to those who have been burned by bad relationships. After a while, even a “perfect thing” won’t work.

To answer your question, yes emotions and suppressed needs are probably at the core of a “damaged” mind. Me personally, I’ve never been able to eradicate them by confronting them. Some people are able to overcome their issues, such as having phobias that they can conquer, but others are stuck with it for a lifetime.

I like your thought about dysfunctions having their root in unhappiness, so it makes sense that if happiness disappears then the dysfunctions eventually will. I’d like to think yes, but so far the answer is no.

thehusk 5/26/2020 - 10:26 am

Maybe it depends what it means to be happy. The only time in my life I could really say I was happy was the first 9 years. Not that things were perfect or that I was never upset or scared. But I was broadly content with my reality and place in it.

Between the ages of 9-20 I’d say I had moments of real contentment and meaning, interspersed with growing anxiety, social isolation, and dysfunction.

From 20 onward I had a complete breakdown of meaning and purpose, near constant anxiety, and a total absence of peace or contentment. But I still had some faint hope that things might somehow change with time.

For at least the last 5 years I’ve been persistently wondering why I’m still alive. I have no real hope. But I’m sometimes still able to enjoy beautiful music or nature, and forget myself for moments at a time.

So I’m not really sure what it means to be happy or content as an adult, knowing what I do about the world and myself. Maybe nobody’s really happy in that way?

I think if I did somehow find my way back to a state of contentment, then that would mean that dysfunctional part of me had found peace. So I wouldn’t feel the need to sabotage anything. I would’ve unlearned my ‘training’.

Maybe if you’re truly content, then you’re also content with the knowledge that everything will come to an end? Some of those who meditate give off a sense of that kind of peace and contentment, but I don’t know.

MindMaster 5/26/2020 - 12:04 am

I agree that I think its like a cancer or a life long disease. It comes and goes and sometimes the treatment works but sometimes it doesn’t. I’m happy to hear you got a second chance! Personally I think that once you have enough supports and connections you can manage the pain which makes life bearable, or at least somewhat tolerable. Just because you don’t want to be alive it doesn’t take away from what happens when you are.

no name 5/26/2020 - 2:25 am

I think it depends on the person and what brought them to this state in the first. I, personally, would and am messing it up. Im working towards a home, a family (mostly) and my dream that I’ve had since middle school but still nothing mentally is changing for me. Maybe over time it will get better but I have my doubts considering its a problem that’s deeper then depression and this disorder is literally me. However I do believe it is as easy as deciding to change and doing it. Of course that’s the simplified version. You have to want it and then you have to work really hard towards getting better. That includes me. If I wanted to I probably could get better but I don’t exactly want to. Also I personally liken it to an infection it starts off as a small cut (not literally) and then it gets infected and if you don’t take care of it its just going to get worse until you lose a limb or die.

WitheringHope 5/26/2020 - 7:09 am

Must be nice to think you’d fight cancer… might be a sign that you still haven’t even experienced real depression.

thebends 5/26/2020 - 7:34 am

Please read more carefully. It’s an analogy comparing 2 incurable diseases and has nothing to do with anyone’s willingness to fight or your bizarre accusation that others haven’t experienced depression.

WitheringHope 5/26/2020 - 5:00 pm

You’re right all depression is equal… even the 3 year old who dropped their ice cream.

no name 5/26/2020 - 5:11 pm

i wouldnt try to explain it to them. they are clearly taking it too personal

Cause of Death: Suicide 5/27/2020 - 12:22 am

I’ve been suicidal since I was 11, I started being molested around 8 or 9 years old and then I’d be molested basically every night. I decided I would simply commit suicide. I had a terrible family and after high school, I was to have nothing and no one. No job, no way to get away from the people who were abusing me, which was my one and only priority… So I gave up and relied solely on suicide. I stopped being molested for a couple years 17-20, then I started being molested most every week again.
I’ve been planning suicide for 15 years. I visit here while simply waiting to get a good way to commit. I am supposed to have committed suicide in 2012. Every day since has been not worth living, to me. I’ve been molested 200 times since 2016. I had thought my child molestation was over, once it returned, I overdosed on 400 pills attempting suicide.

Mf 5/27/2020 - 12:34 pm

I’d mess it up so fast that i’d never realize i had a recovery chance at all until i lost it, lol.

hope432 5/28/2020 - 6:41 am

You people, are very meaningful to me. I can always relate to you. I think our main problem is not bad relationships, having few friends or connection or no friend or no job although this are very important. Our main problem is the inability to truly enjoy life again, find a real meaning and simply live the same way we lived when we were children.

Just look at me, I’ve managed to rebuild my life, got a few friends, have a nice career in front of me and although I am no longer suicidal for years, I still come to this place. Why do I come here? Because I cannot relate to other so called ‘normal people’. I relate to you. I feel closer to you, broken people. I like to read your stories and I find myself more connected to you.

What I do think is that we don’t need a ‘perfect life’ but simply enjoy life no matter how horrible, empty, meaningless it looks. Find something to do. Find something to enjoy. Find a balance. Do you like to smoke? ( I mean normal cygarettes, not drugs). Then smoke, but don’t overdo it. DO you like to watch a real good movie? Then watch it. Do you like spirituality? Then read good spiritual books and find SOME meaning in your life. I don’t think it will perfect, but it’s much better than doing nothing. We can always improve our lives somehow. Yes, life is empty. Yes, people are meaningless and most of them have also empty lives. They are empty. But we can still smile at someone and have a good day. We can still enjoy some good food or the sun, or nature, or some park in our cities…. it’s far from perfect, but it’s still life.
Suicide tells me nothing. I also think this is not an escape.

hope432 5/28/2020 - 6:50 am

Anyway, I thank for your existence and for this website, no matter how dark it looks because I find ‘normal people’ truly shallow and empty. I lived my whole without friends and now when I do have some friends, I still cannot relate to them. At least, in this place, people can express their inner feelings.

@Cause of Death: Suicide, you may think that your life has no meaning and they destroyed your life. But you still exist. And you are meaningful. You are a miracle, a different and unique person and I enjoy getting to know you. I like to meet people different from others. Please, do live. Please don’t commit suicide. I would miss your presence on this website. I am sure you can still somehow enjoy life and somehow improve your life. You are sensitive and unique and I like you. Find something you can do. Try to enjoy yourself and think positive no matter what, no matter how many times you fail. As for your rapes, many women are in your situation. There is nothing shameful about it. Don’t think they destroyed your life. You can still find someone meaningful in your life. You can never know. Please LIVE. Who knows, but perhaps a happy and meaningful life still awaits you, even if right now you can find no escape.

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