Back when I lived in Rhode Island, there were places I avoided as much as I could. Some of them, I couldn't avoid. What they all had in common was being places where I'd contemplated suicide.
There was the sharp bend in the road that I'd thought about just driving into. There was the highway overpass I'd tried jumping off of before I lost the nerve. There was the McDonald's parking lot off of RI-24 where I'd sat for hours before walking to the side of the road and trying to work up the nerve to throw myself into traffic.
Since I'm sitting here today, clearly, I didn't go through with any of this. I often wonder why. I knew two young men who killed themselves. Both were friends, though neither very close. Here's what they had in common: both were bipolar, both were drug users and drinkers. Beyond that? I don't know. They were both very young, both quite bright. One was a college student, the other was a fellow employee at McDonald's, a talented musician, and an occasional marijuana dealer. One was white, the other was black.
I figure being female is part of what's protected me so far from suicide. The stats on suicide are pretty clear - women attempt more, but men complete more. That I don't use drugs or drink also probably makes a difference. My mother was drunk when she tried to kill herself, by overdose. She panicked and got my father to call 911, but she went farther in her attempt than I ever did. I guess the equivalent for me would've been if I'd actually jumped, but come out with a few broken limbs? I don't know.
I know that it's always been sheer physical terror that's kept me back. Just terror.
I'm going to stop writing now because this is triggering the fuck out of me and all I can think about is overdosing. I'm going to find someone to be with until this moment passes.