Laura Carbonell is a 47 year old writer and Spanish teacher in San Francisco. Here, we talk about how she deals with suicidal thoughts.
Laura: Writing about these things, setting them on paper, I think, is good. And helping people who feel the same.
Des: Yeah, the only downside is that people start to think, “Oh, you’re–”
Laura: Weird. […] People are afraid of dark.
Des: Well, [I’m] talking to people who have been there and then come back, so I don’t think that’s very dark.
Laura: Exactly. There’s the good thing about it. We survived it and now, how can we deal with it? Every day, find a passion. My thing is, you have to find a passion, a way to express…because the pain of life. There’s this pain.
I think it’s more, there’s existential void, but it’s like constant. When I was 5, I was already thinking,what the fuck? I didn’t talk to other kids because I was already thinking, what am I doing here? And if I talked to other kids, they were not gonna understand me at 5. I remember that. I don’t remember more than that before that, but I’ve always lived with the existential void.
Once a year I read this book “Man’s Search for Meaning,” about this guy in the concentration camp and how they made it through. Every day they found a little something to survive the day, even if it was to get the bread from the guy who’s actually dying, but that kept them going for 24 hours.
…And surrounding yourself with people who don’t care how you are or what you are.
Des: Yeah, it’s important.
Laura: That helps me. And laugh a lot. I laugh a lot.
If you’re feeling suicidal, please talk to somebody. You can reach the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.