What was going on for you back then, Mason?

I thought about suicide constantly for about three years. It first started when I was in Year 11, and I had started to focus on academic success and achievement. In Year 12, I was diagnosed with depression and was hospitalised for a few weeks.

What happened?

I attempted suicide four times, and my parents helped get me hospitalised each time. Sometimes I was in the hospital for weeks and other times for months. For every suicide attempt, there were probably like 10-20 instances where I didn’t attempt.

It sounds like that was an ongoing challenge for you?

The thoughts didn’t go away quickly and that was really confusing at first, but now I know that is normal.

Why do you say that?

For me, suicide was a part of my depression and the depression made my suicidal thoughts worse.

How do you look after yourself now?

Recovery took a few years, and it took time to find the right psychologist and psychiatrist. It also took time for the therapy and medication to start working.

That sounds positive…

In the end, it was a combination of five things that really contributed to my recovery: the right medication; a great psychologist who I really got along with and looked forward to seeing; exercise; diet changes and vitamins; and deferring uni for a semester to take the pressure off.

What else helped?

My family really advocated for me and did not give up on me. I also had my friends, my faith and doctors who did not give up on me.

It’s so important to have the right people on your side 😊

Yeah, I’m currently doing very well and have not thought about suicide for two years.