The Night Of
Being There

Damn Unpretty

Warning: This post is graphic. Help is available for free by phone or text if you or a loved one are contemplating self-harm. 

I was likely never in danger of dying from the overdose itself. I was more likely to die choking on my own vomit while unconscious on the bathroom floor. Not exactly a glamorous exit off this mortal coil. 

They send you down to inpatient wearing nothing but oversized paper scrubs and a pair of grippy socks. I wasn't allowed to wear a bra. You can wear approved, non-drawstring clothing after your first psychiatrist consult, which usually takes about 24 hours.

A few people didn't have anyone to bring them clothes and spent their entire week in those paper scrubs, which eventually shred and rip and disintegrate. We raided the ward's lost-and-found and found some community t-shirts, which could get passed along to the next paper-scrubbed newbie. Three female patients ended up wearing the same shirt with a vaguely sexist slogan on it, which they shrugged off because at least it wasn't chafing their boobs. 

You learn fairly quickly to always change your clothes in your bathroom, since your room doesn't lock. Your bathroom doesn't actually lock either, but the staff is at least obligated to knock before they barge right in.

I was too depressed to shower the first couple days. A tech finally handed me a bottle of baby shampoo as a hint. 

The IV port on my left arm developed a blood clot and an infection. I spent my first day in inpatient terrified out of my mind as I watched the swollen, blotchy redness spread from my shoulder down to my wrist, convinced that I was about to die from some hospital-borne super-bug, trapped on the island of misfit toys, two floors away from proper medical care. 

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I was eventually sent off for an ultrasound, but no one told me why. Given the number of cups they'd made me pee in since removing the catheter, I panicked briefly about a possible pregnancy before a nurse checked the order and confirmed it was for my arm.

(I was not pregnant, of course. I actually had my period all that week. The hospital provided massive, bulky pads; I discovered I was still wearing the tampon I'd arrived at the ER with on Wednesday.)

(Later that day, my side of the room flooded. My roommate spread out a carpet of towels for me. We then got into a two-day stand-off with housekeeping over our trash can, which was filled with a paper bag [no plastic bags on the psych ward], all my used pads and about eight inches of water.) 

(The county hospital psych ward is no Sandra Bullock movie. It's barely a low-budget Brie Lawson indie film. Right after housekeeping agreed that the flooded trash can was not our problem, the room promptly flooded again.)

I worried they'd have to amputate my arm. Instead, they gave me a band-aid, an antibiotic and told me to sleep with it elevated. It got better after that. I still have a gross little ball of scar tissue on the vein. 

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My right arm wasn't infected, but my elbow was still a bloody mess. They had to use my wrists and hands for blood draws after that, which almost never went well the first or second (or even fifth or sixth) attempt. 

I have dreams I'm back there, that I'm trying to get off the phone before my call gets shut off for group therapy, or that I forgot to fill out that day's menu order and won't get a proper food tray. Or that I'm crying. Or the person next to me is crying. Because there was so much fucking crying. 

Jason took this photo of me in the ER, after I was intubated and put on a breathing machine. 

"I wanted you to see what it looked like," he explained. "I wanted to make sure you never, ever forgot."

 

 

Comments

Rebecca

That tattoo has some new meaning now.

laura

Oh, Amy! I hurt for all of you and am in complete awe of your bravery.

Cecily

Oh honey. Thank you, so much, for staying. And for sharing. Let us help you carry this.

Erin

So incredibly sad you felt so empty, alone and dark , and so amazed by your willingness to share your experience. I want to add my voice to the hundreds, and as someone who had two boys in the DC area around your kids' ages, I have loved reading your words for a very long time. Glad you and your singular voice are still with us.

MJ

I have to take it as a good sign that you were afraid you were going to die from a hospital-induced infection. I’m so glad you’re here. How are you doing now? How are the men (and boys) in your life holding up? Please know that you have lots of people out here hoping that you are all hanging in there.

Amy Bridges

I'm in continued awe of your unbelievable honesty. KEEP TALKING. If you will, I will, too.

reenie

Amy, I try so hard to gather my thoughts together enough to respond to what you've shared with us. It never really works, but as I looked back over your posts prior to the one where you said you had no idea what kind of response you'd get because, among other things, who reads blobs anymore, I was surprised at how few people commented on a blog that I was SURE so many more people read. I know that so many people care about you, about your family, and your words. I'm one of them...and I don't want you to be unaware of that because I chose not to comment.

I'm glad you're still here. It was a balm to my heart to read that you were afraid to die from your infection...it would have been so awful if you didn't care. I think you're in the right mindset, and that's huge.

Thank you for sharing with us. I hope you continue to get the help you need; I hope you continue to heal; you are not alone. We're here. You're here.

Phoebe (an internet stranger)

Thank you for writing about this and about every other thing you've shared. I'm not a writer so I hope this comes across ok and makes sense but I so appreciate you writing about this in such detail. I know your words are helping me have greater empathy and understanding. You are brave and beautiful and I am so glad you are still here (writing or not).

Shana J

Love and light to you, to Jason, and to your boys.

Shannon

Thank you for sharing. We love you.

Alex

Just commenting to show my support. <3 You're being so unbelievably brave sharing your story with us and setting a great example to others by doing so. Much love.

Darra

If you are feeling up to some black humor, the Shop Related Products ad on your site features hospital slipper socks, baby shampoo, non slip skid socks for hospitals, and a book: :This Mortal Coil. Now did you do that, or did Amazon?

If it's ever OK for Internet strangers to say they love you, then I love you.

Leslie

My first thought after reading what Jason said was "He won't, why should you?"" Yeah, I'm a nasty bitch.

I can see you're developing (recovering) a certain wry sense of humor. More likely to die from choking on vomit and then from a hospital infection. That's like my feelings about cheap rubber tubes they used to use for tourniquets for finding a vein -- I broke one when I tried to kill myself in the ER and cursed very loudly. Now I smile about it. Humor, even gallows humor, is a very good thing, Amy. And acknowledging that you probably didn't really want to do away with yourself but were actively demanding help "right now!" is important and praiseworthy.

Keep talking to us. You're not alone with us. Many of us understand. Be strong and know you are loved.

Monica

We’ve never met but your voice is in my life. Your blog has been in my feed since before Ezra came around. It always delights me to see your name when you update. I am so glad you stayed.

Lorrian Ippoliti

Still thanking the Universe that you are here with us. Sending more weird Internet stranger hugs your way. Not sure if the weirdness is the Internet, the stranger, or the hugs but I still don't care ;-)

xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxo

Beverly White

I rarely comment but have been a faithful reader for many years. I want you to know that I am here and I am listening.

Katie

So glad you're still here. Wishing you love and light. Thank you for sharing your story.

Rachel

I also just want to say I am so glad you are still here. You have touched my life for the last 4 or so years (since my first baby was born) and helped me through bumpy roads of parenting and baby conundrums. You have made me laugh and made me marvel at your life with all boys. You are wonderful and kind and loved, and the world is a better place with you in it.

zoot

Thank you for being vulnerable and sharing your story. Thank you for being honest about the ugliness. Thank you for being you. My light continue to shine in your darkness. Love.

Holly

I'm sure there are a lot of us out here that are not sure what to say, after the initial shock at what happend and joy that you are still here, but we are here, still listening and will read whatever you are willing to share. ((Hugs))

Alice

Thank you for your honesty. It has already made an impact for the better in this world. Please let us blog friends know if we can support you somehow. Because we will.

Sue W.

Really glad you are still here. You are showing such bravery in sharing the journey with us. Sending more hugs your way and hoping that every day you are feeling better and stronger.

L

Thank you again for sharing, for putting the words out there. Thank you for being brave.

Elaine C. B.

Still not sure what to say. So, hi! Thinking of you, and glad you are still here, and I'm sending good juju out into the universe for you and your family today.

Alison

I really admire your candor. I can barely stand to re-examine my bad moments in my own head. This is brave. So much love and healing and hugs to you.

Eliza

Thank you sharing this. Everyone's voice is important, but it's recently become clear to me how incredibly important it is for those of us outside depression to hear a voice like yours to hopefully bring us closer to understanding.

Would you recommend a ward like this as a place for used clothing donations? For example, if I admit to myself I'm never actually making a t shirt blanket, could the hospital use those used-but-clean t shirts for patients? (Bonus: None of mine are sexist!)

Kristin

First of all, I used to read your cloth diaper posts like gospel. Baby Ike and my little dude are close to the same age, and I was so glad to have someone out there who understood the insanity, loneliness, and loveliness of motherhood. I'm more of an Instagram follower than a blob reader now (seriously, who reads blobs?) but I've been checking here daily for any and all updates. You've been in my thoughts constantly for the past week and I'm so glad it's because you're still here.

Katie_B

I've read for a long time, and seeing these posts shook me. Your funny wise words guided me through my anxious first pregnancy, and I have felt so lucky that you let us internet strangers hear about your experiences in your unique voice. I'm sending healing and love and wishes for recovery.

Susan

Thank you so much for your candor in sharing what you're going through. Please continue to talk--what you're doing can save a life. It is saving yours! Sending much light to you and your family.

Cass

So glad to continue to hear your voice. I've been a reader since 2008 when I had my first (of 3) littles and have followed you and your writings all over the internet. Your parenting columns when we both had little littles always made me laugh and you still give such good advice. And I loved the pregnancy calendar more than anything - so relatable. Your voice would be missed and I'm so, so glad you're still here. Like another commenter said above, I always click first when I see your name come up in my feed reader. Thanks for sharing and thanks for being here and thanks for writing. Sending internet love.

ChrisL

Thank you for sharing. You are so very strong. You are so very needed, and wanted and important! Keep writing because it is therapeutic and because we hear you and want to continue to do so. Much love to you and your gang of guys!

Samantha

I'm glad you are showing some of the reaction from your husband because I think it helps people who believe their loved ones would be better off without them to see that is not the case.

Dawn

There is power in what you are sharing. Please stay.

Kim

Thinking of you and your family. It sure is humbling. As someone who has talked relatives off the suicidal ledge (including my own teen kids), I wonder how Jason is doing. I hope he has access to therapy too. Hugs to all of your family. Take care, thank you for sharing your journey.

Liz

Thinking of you and sending you and your whole family all the hugs in the world

Amy in StL

Wow, you're a powerful writer even when it's a painful topic. Thank you for sharing. Seriously.

Shelly Kroll

I am so glad people are responding to your posts with actual words, because i can't seem to find any that don't sound trite or stupid. Thank you for continuing to share your experience with us and hope that it provides something, anything to help you. XOXO

Bree aka Frema

Reading and sending love!

Elizabeth_K

I'm so glad you are still here. Thank you for sharing.

Jessica

Amy: I see you. I hear you. I love you. You matter.

Lindsay

Dear dear Amy, I am sending you love. I hope you know none of this is your fault, that it can get better, and that it's ok if it's not better yet. We aren't going anywhere.

Sarah Burt

I don't have the right words but can't go without commenting to say thank you for continuing to share your story. I have followed your blogs for years and years and feel like I know you even though you don't know me. You've been in my thoughts a lot this past week. Keep writing, keep processing, it matters!

TanjaK

I don't know what to say. Well, I'll say this, I hate depression because it is so allconsuming and it truly prevents you from living a full life. And don't start me on anxiety. So, I wish you to recover from this and I wish you from all my heart that you get fully better and healthy, that you build up the strength to get there. I'd attach a photo of our great, beautiful, funny, clumsy and silly cats to help you a bit, because when does a photo of silly cats not help, but I'm afraid my skills are sort of lacking. So, I'm just sending you a big hug.

Lisa

Ah christ, so much pain. There was a song in the 80s with lyrics that went, "Stay, and I will understand you." That's all I have, as an Internet friend, but the lyrics and melody came to me unbidden so I give them to you. <3

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bev4H57si2E

Stephanie

Amy, I've been a follower for a long, long time. I read many "mommy blogs" back in the day, and yours is the only one that I'm still reading. I comment occasionally, but it's definitely sporadic.
I want you to know that you matter, that you really matter. I don't know you, at all, but I feel like I do, because of your writing. I applaud your incredible courage in sharing your story. Please know that you are heard, and that so many people out there care. You take care of you, and do whatever it is that you need to do to get through this. Hugs.

Kim too

Keep going, Amy. You’re going to be ok. Things are going to be ok.

Gina

Dear Amy, you have touched so many of us. Keep left foot, right foot. Things will get better. What i can tell you for sure is that you are loved. 💙

KimAZ

You matter so fucking much to so many.
I want you to matter to yourself.
Thank you for being so honest.

Jessica Glover

Sending love - I've been reading since 2009, and you feel like a friend. Hang in there, this too shall pass and get better. XOXO

Kim too

And forgive me, because I don’t really know what I’m talking about, but the more I think about your story, the more it seems to me that it was less an act of depression than an executive function lapse, an act of extreme impulsivity, and once you started down that path, you couldn’t stop. There was a commenter, I think her name was Joni, who said she had planned out two or three arrempts, but never followed through, and I got the opposite impression from you - that The opportunity was right there and you took it. And I don’t suppose it really matters, except that I’m desperately trying to understand. I have a kiddo who may or may not be on the spectrum, but definitely has EF issues, and I’m terrified I won’t get her through her teenage years.
For me, Kate Spade was a shame. Anthony Bourdain was sad but not altogether surprising. You, my internet friend, you shocked me and scared me. So please know that I’m not trying to judge or pry, just understand.

Beth

Amy your honesty and openness is saving me and empowering me to face my reality. Thank you!

Judy

You are honest. And you are loved.

Ashley

Glad you’re still here and I’ll keep reading and supporting you from afar. <3

Laura in Michigan

Your honesty is so important and needed. Thank you

Shawnee

Amy, I've been following you since before Noah. You've gotten me through many a rough patch, both with this blog and with the Smackdown. I have so much admiration for you as a woman, a wife, a mother. And I was absolutely stunned when I read that you tried to commit suicide. I literally read the beginning of "Where I Almost Went" over and over, because I just could not make it make sense.

My father committed suicide when I was four, the same age my twins are now. Although I have had my own battles with depression and anxiety, I cannot imagine leaving them. And, suspecting the depth of your love for your children, I could not imagine you wanting to leave them. Your writing, and the thoughts and feelings you have shared these many years, are helping me to understand the depth and utter darkness of this bastard, depression. I am fortunate that I have never fallen all the way into the abyss. I'm starting to understand that, perhaps, suicide doesn't seem like a choice, in the moment. Perhaps it seems like truly the only option left. I'm so sorry for your pain, for your family's pain. But know that you are illuminating this topic for all of us. As many other strangers have said - I love you, Amy. Thank you for your honesty. Thank you for staying.

Jenny

I never knew I could care so much about a stranger on the internet. I'm so glad you are still here. Love to you and your family.

Mel

Dearest Amy -- I'm a lot older than you, and have read your posts for years. Despite you knowing nothing about me, to me you are a good friend with a smart mouth and a keen eye for pulling meaning out of the everyday. I am so sorry for your pain and sadness. Your candor is helping me be a better person, someone more able to relate with those around me, so I thank you for your bravery and honesty. I cannot imagine the fortitude it is taking to lay this all out -- the emotional cost to you must be immense. I pray you are finding support and solace in your journey. And I am really glad you are still here to tell us about your experience. Press on! (Even if the journey is uneven.)

Christine

Oh god, Amy, I am so damn sorry you're going through this.

Amy

It’s a strange thing to read about someone else’s experience and be able to so closely relate. Last year when the depression and darkness got to be too much, there was nothing special that prompted the worst. And honestly, I think that’s what bothered me the most. Nothing triggered it, there was nothing special about that Wednesday when I told my best friend I didn’t want to be alive anymore. But the days and weeks of not wanting to feel all the things so very clearly and distinctly added up until it was too much. I have, so far, not ventured as far into the where it could go, but that doesn’t mean I don’t understand how utterly hopeless and black things can be. And I also know that you can love the shit out of your friends and family and yet be so blinded by the depression that they don’t always factor into the equation in ways that make actual, logical sense. Thank you for sharing your words and thoughts and self as you continue to move through this. You owe none of us any thing, but I am grateful for what you have and are sharing.
Sincerely, someone else named Amy

Holly

Thank you for continuing to share your story. You are helping many of us in many different ways. I hope you and your family are healing.

jm

I thank you for sharing a bit of your story here. Sending wishes of comfort, clarity and peace, especially to Jason. I wonder if he would be willing to share his part of this story.

Janyll

I'm just hoping Jon has all the support he needs after going through this horrific experience. He has suffered greatly, having faced the prospect of losing his wife and raising three motherless children. I also hope the kids were not badly affected by their mother's unexpected and prolonged absence. All the concern shown here for Amy is great, and I join everyone in their relief that she survived and now can get the help she so badly needs, but the rest of the family deserves our thoughts and prayers, too.

Charlie

So honest and so brave to tell your story (with pictures no less). I hope that as well as helping others who read here, this is good for you too, to tell your story. I have been reading many "blobs" for so many years, but I can't recall when one has affected me so much.

I think most of us feel like we are friends of yours, and want to help you, as one does when a friend is suffering. I feel really frustrated that I can't help you and wanted to let you know that's because in your writing you are so engaging/honest/ lovely/ fun/witty (I could go on!) it's like having a friend you are listening to and learning more about their life. Take care of yourself and your lovely family x

Stacey

I don’t get it. I don’t understand what you’re doing. I have read you for years and I am trying to be supportive but I don’t understand. I think what you’re doing is at best self promoting an at worst so dangerous. I know several teens who struggle with suicide idolation and a little tagline at the top does not absolve responsibility. Plus, what are you doing to your children? Their peers can and will find this, find the pictures. Children are mercilessly mean. How can you expose them to that? I wish you well in your recovery, But I hope you’ll reconsider talking about your struggle with suicide so openly here.

Sassy Apple

Okay, time for a giggle. As I'm reading your post (as I have every post for the last 6? years) the ads scrolling beside your article are from Amazon, letting me know I can buy no slip hospital socks, a book, "The Mortal Coil," and baby shampoo. SMH

Checking to hear from you every day :)

Sassy Apple

Me again. I don't always read comments on your blog, especially when I wanted to quickly add my giggle. HOWEVER, the post from Judge Stacey caught my eye right as I hit 'post.' Then I scrolled some more and read a few other less than supportive comments. You ignorant, spiteful judgmental people!!! I so hope you DO read comments, so you can read how contemptible others find your comments. Stop trolling on here and go help separate children from their parents in Texas.

And, yes, I AM judging you.

Lauren A

I think talking about suicide in full ugly truth is helping in disspelling the idolization of it. My cousin committed suicide, and more friends over the years than I care to count- it’s so ugly. I REFUSE to watch drivel like 13 reasons why for the possibility of people copying it- it seemed damn dangerous to make, in my view. This? Hell- amy seems to be doing a good job of disspelling any romanticism around suicide, so I think it’s good work.

I have worried and thought about you daily. And if they are willing for you to share it- the reaction from your friends and family would be helpful. Suicidal Folks think their loved ones would be better off- I wish my cousin knew I would throw up from grief at his suicide for days and that my friend would know I’d sob in the bathtub learning about his death. Your loved ones are better off with you.

Also- nerd question. Is it like the later Harry Potter books where he can feel Voldemort in his brain? Like, you so clearly want to live, but you have this part that wells up and tries to murder you? Like it seems so separate from the rest of your thoughts and desires and came out of “nowhere” (originated with depression and anxiety and I can only imagine the drugs for both with side effects of suicidal thoughts) to try to kill you on a normal bad day.

Shannon

Oh Amy. I'm a long time reader, and my heart breaks that you would be in that much pain that in that moment you could see no way beyond it. Please know that you are seen, and heard, and supported. And anyone that says you shouldn't be talking about it is reinforcing exactly why you should be. If mental health was more openly and honestly talked about, the supports, understanding, and plain old compassion would be commonplace. I admire your honesty. Much love to you and your family.

Amy A

The judgment calls from others aren’t helping much, I’m sure. I so respect your honesty and willingness to write about this. Life can be brutal on the inside, even when it may seem to be so rosy from the outside. Whether you decide to tell your boys, or however you choose to handle this, I’m sure Jason and your beautiful boys will be okay. As evidenced by some of the comments on here, some people aren’t going to understand your openness, but that’s on them; you do you and you do what you have to do. Keep speaking, keep writing, and keep your heartbreaking honesty. XO

CallMeJo

I wish I had better words to share with you. About how much I've learned from you about cloth diapering, and mothering, and being a person in the midst of it all. You've been there for years. I can come back and check in on you and your family.
Just know that I appreciate you for your honesty, your bravery, and your willingness to show us how messy being human can be.
With love,
An Invisible Friend From the Internets

Laura B.

I've been coming by everyday just to check in. When you haven't posted, I re-read your recent entries. If you haven't had your fill of internet-stranger love yet, here's a little bit more: <3 <3 <3

I've also been checking in with some of my own acquaintances IRL who I know have similar struggles. YOU prompted me to do that, and I'm sure I'm not the only one similarly inspired/reminded to reach out. DESPITE THIS CRAPTASTIC EPISODE IN YOUR OWN LIFE, LOOK AT ALL THE PEOPLE YOU ARE HELPING!

Stick around, please, for a long time.

Maegan Clark

To Stacy- we NEED to talk about suicide. All the ugly. All the bad. And love. Amy- I have never met u and have no minions (kiddos;) You are saving lives. It is so hard to speak on depression and anxiety. All of us need the wake up call. Please get help if u are hurting. I am walking with you middle fingers up at all that criticize. You got this!

Meghan Shirreffs

Your bravery and courage bring me to tears. I've been feeling so anxious, overwhelmed, and sad lately and have had some dark thoughts that I've been unable to share with my loved ones. Thank you for shining a light on this issue and for sticking around. I'll try to do the same.

Soo

Your courage astounds me. Also, you are not responsible for other people’s approval, especially those from people who haven’t even met you. Listen to your heart, and go from there. Your boys will learn that they never have to hide anything from their mom - they will know that their deepest demons don’t have to be suffered alone.

reenie

Stacey - you don't need to get it. I'm guessing you're, thankfully, not suicidal. These posts are not for you. These posts are for Amy, for her family, for her friends, and for the strangers who read here who might also be struggling. It's always helpful, IMO, to hear from someone who has attempted suicide and regretted it. The ones who come out the other side and think, "Thank God that didn't work, and I'm still here." To know that they might also someday be able to see the good in sticking around.

The more open we are about the subjects of anxiety, depression, suicide, etc, the better the chances are of saving others from having to navigate a similar experience. If we ignore it, Earth will only become a more lonely place for those who suffer.

I am fully onboard with destigmatizing all of this, and I'm thankful there are people like Amy who are willing to expose themselves so fully to possible embarrassment and censure.

tiffany lewis

We love you Amy. Thanks for being brave enough to share.

Misguidedmommy

Stacy,
You are right, YOU DON'T GET IT. Do you know how many people who are thinking of committing suicide go on line and search for posts of regrets, and unsuccessful attempts? The answer is A LOT. I've posted openly for years about my fathers suicide, at least once a month I get emails from people who say that reading my post saved them. If one person clicks on Amys post and sees her regret, sees the aftermath, sees what her husband had to find and deal with, then that is ONE PERSON WHO IS SAVED AND IT IS WORTH IT. If you don't get it, it's probably good that you have never been in this frame of mind. If a teenager stumbles on this and realizes what a mess they will leave behind for their parent, maybe they will get help instead. If a teenager sees that this person could survive this horrific trauma and find humor, perhaps they will learn that they too can survive.

And her kids HER KIDS, do you think he kids won't know this happened? They will know AND THAT'S OKAY BECAUSE SUICIDE ISN'T A FUCKING SECRET. DEPRESSION ISN'T A FUCKING SECRET AND WE SHOULDN'T BE ASHAMED OF OUR DEMONS. Maybe those kids will tell there parents. and maybe that day one person will be less of a cunt to a stranger because you just never know.

Shannon

Fuck anxiety, fuck depression, and fuck stigma. There is tremendous power in truth-telling, and I am deeply grateful for your vulnerability and generosity in sharing your story. You and your family have been in my thoughts every day. Wishing you all healing and light.

Love, a queer, anxious mama of three, whose life has been made tangibly better over the years thanks to YOU. I’m so glad that you exist.

Trish

Amy, I spent today taking care of details involving the death of a dear friend by suicide. It included hugging her husband who didn't understand why, why that day? We may never know why but I'm thankful that no one is helping Jason pick out flowers for you. So many of us are here caring about you- please choose life!

Liz

I left a different type of message than Stacy but I think some of the messages coming at Stacy (cunt?) are over the top. I think Stacy has some reasonable reactions, and I was surprised there weren't more questions or different reactions from readers....perhaps they have been done more privately. Sometimes questioning rather than showing complete support and understanding IS good. This situation is complicated and messy. I feel for Amy, and I also feel for her entire family. For her mother, her children, her spouse, and her close friends. And I do believe some things should stay within our private boundaries. My own young kids don't need the truth of how powerful my own depression has been, not as young as five. Watch out for the bitch train of perimenopause if you already have depression. I wish the docs warned women about that one.

Kate

As someone who has read your advice column, your blog, and your pregnancy calendar and has never commented, I wanted to add my voice to this chorus. Your words have helped me through difficult times with my two little ones and kept me entertained during nighttime nursing sessions and long metro ride commutes. I’m so sorry you are going through this but glad you’re getting the help you need and helping others by sharing your story. Sending love to you and your family.

Alexia

Amy,
Long time reader from Central America... also a lurker! Ive enjoyed your writing and honesty for so long... and now perhaps I believe I came across your blog by destiny. Much in common with you. I have a history of depression, and currently fighting the urge to find a way to leave this world every single day of my life. Postpartum depression is real and I plead to God to find the strength everyday because I want my infant daughter to have a mother. I hope you are getting better, all of us broken hearted are counting on you and we need you. We need to hear your success story so we can find some hope.

Lia

Hi Amy,

Firstly, I'm glad you're still here with us. Secondly, thank you for sharing this experience, all of it. Right down to the part where you had a tampon in for several days. You are so real and raw and beautiful. These are important aspects of the experience that we need to be aware of, psychiatric hospitals are degrading and not pretty and I think you've captured that very well. I have read this blog since Noah was about 1 and have mostly just remained a lurker to your life. But something you wrote struck me in particular. That you were too anxious to let anyone know the anti-depressants stopped working (in the previous blog). This struck me because my best friend has anxiety as well and it never even occurred to me this could be a thing that might happen. So thank you for sharing your experience so I can better myself as a support person for her.
From my understanding of anxiety and depression is that it's a bitch that tells you horrible lies and you know it. But that doesn't make it any easier not to believe them. You are an amazing writer, mother, wife, friend and person and I wish you all the best with your recovery. Thank you for spreading awareness.

To Stacey,
I hope her children do see this when they are old enough to comprehend the gravity of it all and it is talked about openly and with the respect it deserves. Mental illnesses should not be a taboo topic. People get depressed. People try to kill themselves. People can recover. If you read these posts and think its suicidal ideation than I beg you to read again and tell me what part of any of this is glamorous? The shitty paper clothes? The old tampon? The lack of privacy? The not being able to use plastic cutlery? The induced vomiting? The shame and guilt? Just because it's being talked about doesn't mean it's ideation. These posts are not romanticising suicide at all. Amy has done a wonderful job showing us her experience and whilst every experience is unique I'm sure there are similarities to many others' experiences, and it's important that they are discussed honestly. This is a suicide attempt. It's not meant to be pleasant. I feel honoured and privileged Amy has shared this extremely personal part of herself with us and we can all better ourselves through education to improve societies perspective on mental illnesses.

Adde

Amy,
I'm a long time lurker. I enjoy your writing so much. You are able to express so much about motherhood that I feel but can't put into words. I'm a mother of three and feel so much common emotion with the joys and frustrations of raising them. I do not have depression or anxiety, but your writing helps me understand those in my life that do. I hope that the openness of these posts is helping you. These posts are helping me understand my loved ones.

Erin

I love you. I love your family. Want you to know I'm out here holding space for you.

Emily DeFazio

I have followed you since I discovered Snarkywood more than a decade ago. I don't really know what to say right now, except that I'm so glad you're still here. I have followed you Through deodorant Wars, Coach purse reviews, the births of all three of your children, and the births of two of mine. I read your advice Smackdown religiously, And your pregnancy calendar has been my faithful companion through this pregnancy.

I guess what I'm trying to say Is that you have touched other people's lives, in the best way possible. Thank you. Sending Internet stranger hugs, and lots of good thoughts your way... Please keep talking, we are all listening.

rose

1) Do all emergency mental health facilities need clean, soft, nice & pretty, non-messaged clothing for people who arrive with nothing? How does one find out about places near their homes?
2) Please do share Jason and your children's side of the event, how they hold it now & what they felt about it as they learned. Any one of us could be needed to support family members/friends facing the touch of suicidal despair. Most of us are ignorant of how to be helpful. I know a child who at age 7 was their parent's closest surviving legal relative and therefore the legal person who had to sign for copies of that parent's death certificate. When things are terrible in our heads we never think of such consequences, we cannot think even 5 minutes ahead; but the more information we have from our pasts the more able we are to cope when we need to step up in support of others.
3) Your description absolutely removes the romance of a Romeo and Juliet scene and makes obvious the grim realities of the aftermaths. This is important! Thank you.
4) Thank you for truth and honesty and above all for the message that things change over tiny amounts of time and also slowly over very long time periods, but they do change. You and your family are loved and loving, I am so glad you will all continue forward.
This must be painful and awful to write about. But like lost pregnancies and other real troubles that happen in life we need to hear and share the truth. We need to know we are not alone.

Jennie

So sorry that you are going through this. Sending you and your family prayers. I've been reading your blog since Ike was little (he's similar age to my 2nd boy). I can't imagine what you are going through. Please take care and thank you for your honesty.

Rebecca

Your candor is breathtaking, Amy. I'm so glad you're still with us--with your your family and with this tribe of pocket friends/followers you've built over the past years. We are sending you all of the invisible hugs and memes. You are loved, in person and from afar.

Rhia Perkins

Oh darling lady. I'm so sorry you got so low. There is so much out there for you to keep going for, and you are so valued. Best of luck in your recovery.

PattM

Love and hugs to you. I appreciate you baring yourself to all of us. Love and support needs to go to Jason, too. My husband has spent some time on an in-patient psych floor and while I won't say I know how Jason feels, I understand. I've followed you before you had kids and appreciate everything you share with us.

Melissa

such a raw and honest post. keep talking to us, amy. we're listening.
love to you and yours.
keep persisting. always.

Brita

Just wanted to drop a note of care and respect. Thank you for sharing your story.

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