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My story is very simple. I was in the ninth grade, and I was lonely. I was very lonely because I had no friends in school. Nobody seemed to relate to my interests, understand who I was, or respect me at all. I was a topper, so all my teachers cared about was me scoring well, nothing else. I took my parents for granted and didn't realize how much they loved me. I was also in love with my best friend and just figuring out that I was gay. All of this, this pressure, this insane need for me to meet everyone else's expectations of me, this need to prove myself as someone worthy, made me want to die. One day, I casually mentioned to my parents that I wanted to take my life. They grew very concerned and sat me down and spoke to me. But the feeling didn't go away. I made better friends in the years after that, but that feeling stayed with me, always in the background. 

I'm a college student and was acutely suicidal twice last year. The first time was when I had just moved to a new city, had to give my first exams, and was alone, scared, confused, and intimidated. The pressure seemed too much, and I could never stop thinking about the knife in my cupboard. Then the second time was when I had just returned from visiting home. I was so homesick and missed the comforts of home so much. Besides, it was the beginning of my second year, and the academic workload had increased exponentially. All this combined made me so exhausted and want to die again. 

In brief, this is my relationship with suicide. I'm happy to say that this year, I have not once felt suicidal. I have built a solid social support network that has dramatically helped me. It was always my friends who helped me. I’ve been fortunate enough to have really loyal and supportive friends, who are always there for me when I need them. Some of them are from psychology backgrounds themselves, so there’s really little to no stigma that I feel in talking about this.I have also grown closer to my parents. I have accepted being gay as a part of my identity that isn't a problem, and so have the people around me. I have learned to deal with the academic workload one day at a time. Apart from this, thinking about the future and setting goals always makes me feel better and motivates me. It always makes me feel like I have the power to make my dreams come true, if I work hard enough, and be there for other queer teens like me, so that no one ever has to feel the way that I did.

I want my life's work to revolve around preventing suicide, particularly among queer people. I hope sharing my story helps that effort. :)


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