The following blog has been written by PAPYRUS supporter, Tim, about his personal experience of losing his sister Lucy to suicide in 2013. Lucy was 29 years old when she died by suicide, but her memory lives on in those who were lucky to know her. 

Lucy had been struggling for most of that year [2013]. We knew something was wrong but clearly we didn’t know of the depths she was living at. She had left her job and been taking some time off, travelling around the UK staying in hotels. Whenever I tried to ask her about how she was doing, I was given an assertive “I’m all good” , but I wanted her to come and stay with me, to relax and take stock. 

Eventually after a lot of gentle coaxing, I persuaded her to come and stay with Delia [Tim’s wife] and I at our new place in Windsor. It felt like a breakthrough moment, and I was looking to forward to having her home, but conscious that we needed to let her do what she wanted to do. 

She arrived and we looked after her for a few days. She mostly wanted to be wrapped up in a blanket on the sofa. It was like having a timid rabbit in the house. I was worried that one wrong move and she would bolt and be off in her car again. 

One day I managed to persuade her to walk with me along the river. She told me about what she was planning to do. She had plans and sounded positive. Again, all the while very conscious not to ask too many questions. I was just so happy to have her at home with me. 

1 October 2013. As usual, I went into London to work with my dog G. In hindsight; I always wonder if things had been different if I had left him at home with Lucy. I completed some quotes and headed back home, looking forward to seeing Lucy. I unlocked the door, went into the house, and that’s when the bomb exploded in my life. 

The immediate hours, days and since that point were scarring and difficult to process. I went into overdrive. I wanted to know why. I wanted answers. One thing I’ve learnt to sympathise with families affected by suicide is that sometimes people are left with no answers, no understanding, no notes.

Lucy was a notebook writer, and had been documenting the inner turmoil she had been going through. Lots of books filled with self hate, and negative inner thoughts. It soon became clear to us the pain that she had been going through quietly by herself for months and months. We had no idea. Her friends had no idea. She was outwardly putting on a brave face, but inwardly fighting. 

I can’t tell you how much I miss her. I still wake up thinking I’ll call her later. People that knew Lucy, will tell you about her infectious laugh. She had the same messed up sense of humour as me. I lover her so much. 10 years…..so much has changed. I can’t believe she hasn’t met my kids. I always wonder if things had been different if she’d been able to stay for a little longer. 

If you’re experiencing thoughts of suicide and need a safe non-judgmental space to talk. PAPYRUS is here for you. Call HOPELINE247 for free, confidential advice and support on 0800 068 4141, text 88247 or email pat@papyrus-uk.org. We’re here to support you all day, every day, whenever you may need us.
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