N is talking quite a bit more about suicide again. It started with a friend that made him angry. N wanted to lash out at this friend. At the same time, N's health class tackled the topic of suicide. The teacher was talking statistics - something like 30% consider suicide but only 17% have a plan. N was angry with the discussion. He described comments made by the other students, but that "they don't really know how it feels." And "I'm one of the 17% with a plan."
This was all poured out to me in the car as I drove him to a friend's home. I've always heard that suicide is a cry for help, so I told him that and asked "how could I help?" His response was that just by listening and taking him seriously I was helping. I could tell he felt better after our hour-long conversation.
A few days later or earlier (I can't remember now), I had been telling my husband the story of one of my high school friends who shot herself in the middle of an orchard. We knew she had been talking about suicide. We even knew she had a gun. But she had been talking about it for so long, that we really didn't take it seriously. I asked my husband, "why didn't we tell anyone?" I can't believe we didn't do anything about it. (Actually we did tell some adults, but they didn't really take her seriously either). We tried to talk her out of it and we tried to love her, but it wasn't enough.
Anyway, as I thought about this past story, I wondered why I wasn't taking N more seriously. No, I don't think he is suicidal, but I do think that he thinks about suicide. And I do think that he needs some additional attention - and to be taken seriously.
So, we've made an appointment to see N's therapist. It's been two whole years since we were there last. I talked to the doctor briefly enough to ensure that this would be the best place to take N. I like that they have a past relationship and that Dr. R gets that anorexia is a major complicating factor and/or cause. Dr. R did recommend getting N onto an antidepressant. I'm reluctant. I'd rather tackle the issues than throw meds into the mix - especially where suicide is an increased risk with some antidepressants. But I'd do it to save my son's life.
My shoulder's ache with the constant heavy worry about N. It never stops.