After getting back home, hiding myself away in bed, wrapping myself in my quilt and crying myself to sleep, I stayed there for the best part of the day. I didn’t want to think about what had just happened, never mind speak about it. When I did wake up I had so many thoughts and questions going round in my head. Why had it happened? What were the reasons? Why now? What had I done? I didn’t feel like I’d been given much of an explanation, which made it a lot harder to understand. I’d put so much emphasis on this person been the one who was helping me through everything, and all of a sudden he wasn’t anymore. I just laid there, playing out the last few months in my head and wondering exactly where things went wrong.
Later on that evening once I’d woke up and dragged myself from my bed, the overthinking continued. I thought that maybe he just needed some space and he’d then realise it wasn’t what he wanted. Or maybe I needed to prove how much he meant to me and he’d want to get back together. I text him, hoping for confirmation, but that’s far from what I got. He kept telling me that it wasn’t my fault or anything I’d said or done, and that the chance of us getting back together was next to none. I saw him on the following Thursday, again hoping that he’d changed his mind, but it wasn’t the case. I knew things weren’t going to get better, and I knew that I needed to accept that things were over. But I also knew that it wasn’t going to be that easy. It was a really tough thing to get my head around. I was only just starting to feel more myself, I could see how much the counselling was helping me, I thought things were getting better. But as soon as I thought things were improving, they’d just got a whole lot worse. The only thing I could cling on to was the fact that he told me we could still be friends, and I was naive enough to think that he meant it.
After the breakup, I very much ended up back at square one. It had triggered so many feelings and emotions that I thought I’d dealt with from the previous few months. The insecurities I had which I thought I was now able to control were worse than ever. Sexual assault can make you feel so many negative things about yourself. Some of the worst feelings I had were that of being worthless. Feeling like my life didn’t matter, like someone could do something which would change my life so much, and change me as a person and it was ok. There were so many negative feelings which had been brought back to the surface. I felt like I didn’t matter, I felt disposable, I felt worthless again. I very much went back into a shell which I’d been working so hard to get myself out of. I stayed in bed a lot, I cried a lot, and my life went back on hold while I tried to deal with this new setback.
2 weeks after the breakup, I’d arranged to meet my friend for lunch. I was in no way feeling normal, but I’d had a few counselling sessions and I was making an effort to try and not let the breakup affect me anymore than it needed to. I was still having bad days, and I was struggling massively with the feeling of being let down. But I met up with my friend and we had lunch and a couple of drinks. I then went to meet my parents for a little while, and later on that evening went to meet some other friends. I’d had a really lovely day. I’d been catching up with people that I hadn’t seen for a while. I was laughing and joking and enjoying myself. Not a single person who saw me that day could’ve thought that my night would end as it did. It had genuinely been really nice and I got back home that night around midnight.
Because my ex had told me that we could still be friends, and I believed that we could be, I’d text him that afternoon and we’d been speaking a little. When I got home that night he’d text me again. Looking back at the texts now, I see that there was nothing friendly about it, and it’s very clear to me now that he never did want to be friends. But because I didn’t want to let him go, I was seeing what I wanted to see, and any text back was giving me that little bit of hope that I was so desperate for. I replied to him once I was home and we spoke a little back and forth. Rightly or wrongly, I then asked him if he was seeing somebody else. Maybe I shouldn’t have asked. In hindsight I definitely shouldn’t have asked. But show me one girl that gets their relationship ended who doesn’t sit and dwell on the thought of there being someone else. But I wasn’t getting a straight answer and my heart sank. I just sat on my bedroom floor and I cried. I couldn’t make sense of anything. Not just the breakup, but all of it. It felt like months of one bad thing after another were building up and I had no release.
This was honestly the lowest point I have ever been at in my life, and I pray that I never, ever end up there again. Every single thing that had happened since Christmas Day was spinning round in my head faster than I could process. Everything I had felt and was still feeling felt so intense and overwhelming. It’s extremely difficult to put into words exactly what was going on in my head at this time. But there was a battle in my head of “it would be better if you weren’t here” and “don’t let this destroy you”. I couldn’t stop feeling like I was a burden to everyone around me, like I was bringing everyone else down with me. I felt that people would be happier without me, that their lives would be easier. The things that had happened had made me feel like I didn’t matter, so I felt like it didn’t matter if I was around or not. In a way that I’m sure not many people will understand, I actually felt like I would be doing the best thing for other people if I wasn’t around, because they’d no longer be hurting at seeing me hurt. I was extremely scared. I was scared that another bad thing would happen in my life and I wouldn’t be able to handle it. I’d been through so much, I’d began to get myself back to a better place, and then I’d been knocked right back down again. I knew that I couldn’t take any more. I didn’t want to go through anything else. I couldn’t see a way out, I couldn’t see a happier life, I couldn’t see a time when all of this would be behind me and I’d be able to deal with it and move forward. I just didn’t see a happy future for myself.
At this point it was the early hours of the morning. I’d been sat on my bedroom floor crying for around 2 hours. I was at rock bottom. The lowest of low points. And I’d come to the realisation that I couldn’t cope, and that I really didn’t want to be here anymore. I tried to ring my ex but he didn’t answer, so I text him to tell him that I didn’t want to be here and that I was going to try to end my life. I asked that he tell my family that I loved them and that he’d give me some time before he rang them.
At the time, I was angry. I was angry because he’d called my Mum the minute he’d got my text. I was angry that he didn’t just do what I’d asked him to. I was angry that I’d been saved. My mum came into my room just before 3AM to find me sat on my floor sobbing. She didn’t say anything, she just hugged me. In fact, we didn’t say much for the rest of the night either. We just sat together while I cried and she tried to make sure that I was ok. I didn’t want to talk about it because I didn’t feel like anyone would understand why I felt like I did. Eventually at some point the next morning I went to bed, and for the rest of that day my parents came into my room every half an hour to make sure that I was ok. And by ok, essentially I mean alive. To put it bluntly, I was on suicide watch. I can’t even begin to imagine how they must have felt. They had to open my door not knowing whether I would still be alive. I was actually asleep for the most part. I figured that if I had to be alive, I’d at least rather be asleep.
On the Monday my mum took me to the doctors. He gave me some information of people I could talk to and he increased my medication. At this point I was still angry and I felt completely numb. I still didn’t want to be here, but I felt that I had no choice. Physically I was functioning, but mentally I wasn’t. For about a week afterwards, I was being watched like a hawk and my parents made sure that I was never left alone for too long. But after a few days I began to see more clearly. That night, I wanted to end my life and I was angry that I hadn’t been allowed to do so. But a few days later I actually felt relieved, grateful and lucky that I had been saved and that I had a second chance. I knew that I had a long way to go before I would be out of the darkness, but I felt determined that I was going to try my absolute hardest to get to a better place. Life really is so precious, and I’d been given another chance to make mine one that I actually wanted to live. And so began my journey of recovery for the second time.