Well, this is the side of losing someone to suicide that people don’t see. The pain and the suffering that goes on inside and behind closed doors.

I don’t show this side of myself to people because, well I dunno, I guess it’s human nature to just put a smile on and carry on, even though when you meet people they might not see what’s going on in the inside!

Well this is what I feel like on the inside and out, some days. I’ve lost my father to suicide and tomorrow will be my 29th birthday. I don’t want any celebrations, I just want tomorrow to be over with..wow your 29 happy birthday!

Bearded-ManWell for some people suffering out there I want ye to know if it’s happy or not that’s ok. Because I know how it feels. I started this page to help others and to help a local charity Southwest Counselling Centre/Kerry Lifeline because they are helping me to get back to being me again. And all I want and hope is to inspire people and to tell people to talk about how they really feel, to ask for help or talk to someone.

So here I am…this is me and yes those are my tears. They’re the tears of memories I’ll always have but also of new memories I will never ever have again.

Depression is just like breaking a leg, you’re physically and mentally hurt. When people see someone with a broke leg they’ll run to help them, open a door or pick them up when they fall. But depression is just the same, only people don’t always see it. They don’t see any wounds so they assume ‘sure they’re grand, there fine’. They don’t know how or when to help. For those of you out there who lost someone to suicide, I feel your pain. To those who found their loved one, I know your pain.

I’ve been there and felt it and I still do. Time will heal all wounds, they say. Well I guess time will tell. I don’t have that answer because my father will only have passed away 2 years on the 24th of this month.

I talk about people! That they should show and tell people that they’re not ok and it IS ok NOT to be ok. So this is me, for the world to see. I don’t mind writing this post and showing you all. Maybe those of you out there that have thought about suicide might take look at me, look into my eyes and see the pain. Look at my face, this is me almost 2 years on and the pain is there, and maybe always will be. Please don’t put your loved ones through this.

Talk to someone
Ask for help
Tell a friend or family member
Talk to your doctor
Tell anyone. Because it’s not worth it.

I know at the time there might seem no other way out for your pain! But there is. There must be! Because all that happens is that pain is passed onto those who love you the most. Those who you will leave after you. I understand you just want the pain to go away. Well so do I. But we have to fight and we have to be strong and get through this with help or each other or via any means necessary. Because there is help out there if you’re willing to look for it and try. I know it will be a long slow struggle, but we’ll struggle it together. With friends or family, doctors or counselors, what ever it takes.

I’m only posting this in the hope that you all will hopefully you see and share this post for everyone on your friends list to seem, and hopefully they will also do the same and share it for their friends to see and help spread this message further, so that others out there can see the pain suicide can cause.

Because I know it and I go through it every single day and thousands of others out there also do, I’m sure. Let’s put a stop to the raising numbers of suicide. The numbers of those taken away from us. For me and others, it’s not just a number, it’s reality.

To the government – our loved ones become numbers, statistics. Those numbers and statistics have faces and loved ones. They have spouses, kids, brothers, sisters, aunts, uncles, moms, dads, grandfathers, grandmothers, friends and neighbours. PLEASE help me stop more Irish people losing their lives to suicide and just end up becoming a number. Because they are and were much more than a number to us.

Please stay safe and pass on my message. I don’t think many people have seen me upset but I don’t care! If it will help even one person change their mind about acting on their plans. Please stay safe and ask for help.

If you know someone in suicidal distress or just need someone to talk to and get their troubles figured out. You can contact Samaritans on 1850 60 90 90

At the moment our government only have a crisis response team during regular working hours and that is not enough. A crisis can happen at any time of the day or night and this should be a 24-hour service. Yet the Minister has yet to respond to me on this issue…

Thankfully a group of volunteers have seen this issue that I myself have seen and gone through and they have set up a suicide intervention response team covering these outside of office crisis hours. It began in Limerick and they are also branching into Kerry and other counties with our help. They can be contacted on 085-1777631 (crisis number). You can also contact this team if you wish to help raise money for their efforts to keep this volunteer team going. Please contact them for to help raise money/send donations.

You can also contact the Southwest Centre whom I am trying to raise funds for on 064-6636416 or email info@southwestcounselling.ie for details on their service or to make an appointment. Or any centre for that matter. These are who I have found and who help me to hold everything together every week.

If you wish to donate to them you can so via texting SWCC to 50300 to donate €4 of your credit (deducted immediately) to help others who cannot afford the price of counselling.

Or also click the link here to help them out https://www.justgiving.com/teams/thebeardedman

The work all these people do CAN and WILL help others in suicidal distress.

Many thanks,
Gary O’Dowd (The Bearded Man Battles Suicide Prevention) Xxx