I’m More Accident-Prone When I’m Suicidal

I’m More Accident-Prone When I’m Suicidal

I’ve noticed something about when I’m suicidal: I’m more accident-prone when I’m suicidal. I know that the word “accident” suggests that nothing would be causing it as it is unintentional – this is true, sort of – but I still find that suicidality affects the presence of accidents.

What Is Being Accident-Prone?

Of course, being accident-prone just means that you suffer a lot of accidents. Let’s just say that there’s a scale of accident-prone-ness. In your average life you may be a level two accident prone (let’s just say) and this means that you experience two small accidents per week. If you’re suicidal, you might be a level four accident-prone so maybe this means you experience five accidents per week and they are more severe. This is the kind of difference I’ve seen.

Examples of Being Accident-Prone When Suicidal

Do more accidents happen when you're suicidal? I think I am more accident-prone when suicidal; but why? Why do suicidality and accidents go together? For example, I’ve noticed that when I’m suicidal, I’ll hurt myself more when I’m cooking in the kitchen. I’ve received considerably more burns and cuts when suicidal than otherwise. If I’m in other potentially dangerous situations, I also tend to take more risk and just not care about what happens to me as a result.

I want to be clear that this isn’t self-harm. I’m not actively trying to burn myself when I take something out of the oven; it just accidentally happens, like it might to anyone else.

Why Would You Be Accident-Prone When Suicidal?

My theory on why I’m accident-prone when suicidal is that I just don’t care about my own wellbeing. It’s simple, I guess, I just couldn’t care less about my own safety. If I want to die, then, surely, I don’t care about what happens before then. If I want to die, then, surely, the small amount of pain from a kitchen accident is irrelevant. If I want to die, then haphazardly ignoring danger surely doesn’t matter.

Be Careful for Accidents When You’re Suicidal

I know it sounds silly to say that you should be careful for accidents if you’re suicidal. I know how silly it is to say to “watch out for accidents” in general. But, honestly, I know that if I’m suicidal I do actively watch out for accidents. Really. For example, when I go into the kitchen to cut up an apple, I actively tell myself, “Watch out, knives are sharp.” Don’t laugh. I also say that, “The broiler is dangerous and hot – don’t burn yourself.”

I do this because I know that life can always get worse. Being suicidal is terrible, yes, but it’s worse if you’re suicidal with boiling oil spilled down the front of you. It’s considerably worse if you didn’t look both ways before crossing the road and now are in the hospital after being hit by a car. And so on.

It is possible to work through being suicidal. There is an other side to suicidality. Therapy, medications and supports can all help you get past the desire to leave this earth. But once that happens, you’re not going to want to tend to a bunch of injuries, too.

Give yourself a break. Protect yourself from accidents when suicidal even though you likely won’t want to. Trust me, it’s something you will thank yourself for later. Even when it feels like you’re not worth it, you are. Lean on my utter faith on that if you can’t believe it yourself, for now.

Banner image by PicServer.org.


About Natasha Tracy

Natasha Tracy is an award-winning writer, speaker and consultant from the Pacific Northwest. She has been living with bipolar disorder for 18 years and has written more than 1000 articles on the subject.

Natasha’s New Book

Find more of Natasha’s work in her new book: Lost Marbles: Insights into My Life with Depression & Bipolar. Media inquiries can be emailed here.

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