illustration of girl standing on a crescent moon looking at starry night sky

Editor’s note: If you experience suicidal thoughts, the following post could be potentially triggering. You can contact the Crisis Text Line by texting “START” to 741-741.

Therapists are required to ask the dreaded question, “Do you have suicidal thoughts?” when meeting a new patient. For a long time, I automatically answered no because I was unclear of the question’s implications and worried about the consequences of saying yes. I worried if I indicated that I simply thought about my death or wanting to die that I’d be unwillingly committed to a hospital. Frankly, I don’t know if there’s any validity in that.

Because of the many stigmas attached to the word “suicide,” this fear has dictated my ability to talk openly about my mental health and the depths of my depression….