“@jarpad Thanks. When leaning off the fourth-floor balcony seemed easier than holding on, I reminded myself #AKF,” I had tweeted on a lonely night.
To which, someone I did not know replied, “Hey, that’s a scary thought to have. Have you talked to anybody about this? I’m happy you’re still here but I’m worried about you #akf”
Someone I have never met or known of cared about what was going on in my head.
The only thing bringing us together was a television series ‘Supernatural’. Jared Padalecki, the lead actor of the show, started the ‘Always Keep Fighting’ campaign in 2015 after he came out about his struggles with depression.
I loved the slogan. Not because I am a total fangirl when it comes to Jared, but because the campaign understands that dealing with mental illnesses can be a life-long struggle and you lose the day you stop fighting for staying alive.
I was diagnosed with a condition called Borderline Personality Disorder or BPD last year. But, its manifestations have been keeping me on the edge for a long time now.
I have tried to commit suicide at least half a dozen times since childhood.
I clearly remember the first time – I was 11 or 12 maybe. And, after a scolding from my grandmother about being careless with my baby sister, I went to the cupboard under the stairs where she kept all her gardening equipment and I drank some pesticide.
The dose was clearly not enough because all I did was puke it out and sleep it off.
I couldn’t tell anyone what had happened. I was ashamed. My mother thought I must have had a stomach infection because of something I ate the previous day.
BPD bothered me in college too, where my friends told me that I did not have any emotions because I did not react to much that happened around me the way the others did.
To tell you the truth, everything that happened to me was like a thousand pins pricking all the time. I used to cry alone after going to bed. But, when it came to problems of others or our group, I muted it out. It was my defence mechanism.
Most recently, I tried to commit suicide by closing myself in an air-tight room and burning my diary after I told my boy friend I had cheated on him. (I had learned that carbon monoxide poisoning is a painless way to die.) That’s when I realised I needed help.
But, even then I was scared of going to a psychiatrist or a psychotherapist because it is usually looked down upon. Therapy is reserved for mad people or people who have been raped.
I did several personality quizzes instead. And, all of them suggested that I have BPD.
Finally going to a psychiatrist was probably my way of confirming what I already knew. And, when I finally got a diagnosis, there was an odd sense of relief. It was not in my head (metaphorically), after all.
Since then, I have had suicidal thought thrice and have sought help.
Supernatural is a unique show because of the kind of family it has managed to build around it. A family of fans that can support and encourage each other.
During the troubled times, Always Keep Fighting and SpnFamily felt like a point of support. And for that, I am thankful to Jared and to other celebrities who use their name and power for something good.