Sunday, September 23, 2012

A pocket full of cash

My favorite picture of Seth. This was on our wedding day.
I look at his face, and he looks so happy, and completely lost in love.
August 12th, 2005

When I got home from work and saw all the prescription bottles were gone...

I just knew.
My deep, dark, fear, was becoming my reality.

I felt like from August 12th, 2008 to April 1st, 2009, was just a waiting game.

I knew deep down in my heart, that one day, the love of my life was going to try (or succeed) to kill himself.

I never wanted to admit to myself that I knew this and how much fear I had bottled up inside my heart and soul.

When Seth didn't come home that night, I knew he was somewhere...
Trying to take his own life.

I didn't sleep at all that night. Every noise, I would be up, looking out the window, hoping the noise I heard was my husband pulling in the driveway.

He never did.

The next day, I had a email from my bank. My account had been overdrawn.

I checked my account online, and found $1,200.00 had been withdrawn.
I had $300.00 in NSF fees within only a 12 hour period.

I called the bank, and they confirmed, that Seth had withdrawn the money.

Now my husband is missing, I'm not even sure if he is alive, and I don't have a penny to my name.
I couldn't pay the mortgage.
I couldn't even buy food or put gas in my car.

The police didn't pay much attention to my cries for help. "He's an adult, he doesn't have to come home if he doesn't want to." "We don't consider it a missing person case until 72 hours has passed".

I begged and pleaded with them. I told them I knew he was going to try to kill himself.

I knew he was in trouble.

They took my information, but did not issue a missing person report.

I went to work that morning. Knowing I couldn't sit home and hope he pulled into the drive way.

Around noon, I got a call from a doctor in a hospital that was 5 hours away from me.

Seth was in the ICU.
He took all the pills he had.

The following is Seth's writing about his attempt. It is the exact writings he did about this. 

- Warning - This might be too graphic for some readers.

I have bipolar disorder and went into a depression and got some professional help. They put me on a drug called Lamictal. It helped a little but I still thought about suicide daily. I took the pills for a few months and then one day decided I did not want to live any more. So I planned trip in week to go kill myself. When the day came I had just refilled my prescription and had a shit load of pills. I grabbed the pills emptied my bank account and took off to Zion’s National park to kill myself. Somehow I ended up at Arches National park instead, but that didn’t really matter. I found a back dirt round that was rarely traveled. I had 11,000 milligrams of lamictal on me so I crushed it up and drank it with a drink. Then I waited to die at peace in the front seat of my truck in the middle of no ware. Then all of sudden I started vomiting like there was no end. My vision started to flicker like an old tv and then I went blind. I panicked and started my truck and drove it right into a sand dune. I continued to throw up nonstop all night. I tried to get out of my truck to dig it out of the sand but found I was paralyzed from the waist down. I crawled across the desert floor on my elbows until I reached my tires. I still couldn’t see my vision was flickering very fast and I can’t really explain that part. I got to the tire and tried to dig my truck out of the sand. After digging for a while I crawled back to the door of my truck. I still could not move my legs. I also noticed at this point that I no longer had control of my fingers. I tried to open the truck door but it seemed impossible without the use of my fingers. I finally got it open and pulled myself back into the truck. All I remember from this point on is vision going yellow but I could see. And I kept vomiting and coming in and out of consciousness. I must have passed out with my foot on the gas because I blew my engine.
When morning came around I just remember wakening to the sound of a jeep. It was a National Park Volunteer. I wondered over to her and asked her to call me an ambulance. I park ranger showed up first and confiscated my hand gun and just kept me conscious until the ambulance got there. The ambulance just gave me a hydration IV, nothing special needed. I had vomited all the Lamitical I took out of my body already.
When I got the hospital the nurse was really nice to me but the doctor was a jerk. I do not think he likes suicide attempts. 

Even though I was completely shattered that my husband had just tried to kill himself, I was so relieved to know he was alive. What happened, we could get through.

The doctor said Seth didn't want to talk to me, he wasn't ready. That he wanted me to know he was ok.

 I was then handcuffed and driven to the Mental Hospital at the U of U by a sheriff. He made me were shackles and cuffs the entire way. He was a really nice guy. All my clothes were covered in throw up and I stunk real badly, but he didn’t care. When I got to the U of U they committed me to 5 West Mental Ward. 

Seth was in the psychiatric ward for two days before he called me. With psychiatric wards, you have to have a password to call the patient or go see them. If you didn't have the password, the hospital would tell you they didn't have a patient under that name. I had to wait for him to call me before I could go see him.

One nice thing about the ward, was that with the password, not just anyone could call or go see him. He didn't want me to go see him. And he defiantly didn't want his family there.

When he gave me the password, he asked me not to give it to his family, that if he wanted to see them or talk to them, he would call them. 

When his family asked me about going to see him, I told them that he asked me not to give the password out, and that he would call when he was ready.

His family didn't believe me. They called the psychiatric ward asking to speak to him, and (because they didn't have the password) they were told they didn't have a patient there under that name.

I was angry. I felt like his family didn't believe me or trust me. That I was trying to keep their son and brother away from them. When really I was respecting his wishes.

I knew Seth was there to get treatment, and if he didn't want people there, that was his decision. 

When I went and saw Seth for the first time, he was medicated to the point that he would slur his speech. He would forget what we were talking about mid sentence. 

He was distraught. He would sit and cry, and ask me if I was going to divorce him.

During that time, I never once thought about leaving my husband.

I loved him, he was alive, and that's all that mattered.

At least in the psychiatric ward, he was safe.


  1. Mel, thank you for writing this. I went through a similar situation with my husband, but with alcohol. He was in the hospital and for a short while the psych ward. When he was there I didn't have to worry. But like you, the thought of leaving him didn't occur to me. It would have been terrible to think of him on the street, hurt or drunk. I still loved him so much.

  2. So very brave of you to post this Melinda! My husband was an alchoholic and when he died suddenly from a stroke, I think my family thought I would be relieved. But I was anything but relieved. Like you and Becky, I loved him so very much regardless of his addiction. I would have never left him. He was a good man who tried very hard to fight the battle, but in the end he lost and so did I.

  3. I feel much better after reading your story. My husband has been on the ward for three days and did not provide me with the code. I wonder if he's getting better, if he knows that we really miss him, and need him. I just hope he would call me soon.

  4. I'm reading this just now, months after you posted it, because you linked to it in your post "Suicide Note." When you wrote this, my husband was still alive. I wanted to say that I know the pain and fear and panic that you feel when you think that the person you love most is out there, somewhere, trying to kill himself. I felt totally helpless, wide with fear, and paralyzed. It's horrific. I understand. And although I went through it alone, I am grateful that you wrote about this, so I know that I wasn't truly alone.