I gave up on my life one day. I was 17 and feeling totally abandoned and alone. I'd been hitting alcohol pretty hard that summer, it was 2001.
First of all, my Dad had cut me out of his life over things that were said between us, and he resented me for wanting to live with my Mom.
More pressingly, I was in love, in a relationship for 2 years but my girlfriend didn't love me anymore. She had broke it off with me for someone else. She had someone new to turn to after our arguments, I had no one. She was getting more and more impatient with me, and cutting me off more and more. She told me one day that she wanted to still be friends, but couldn't do it if I wouldn't just get over it.
I had been fighting for her to love me again for a few weeks, but one day came when I just gave up...I didn't know what else to do and I gave up. I called in to my summer job and told them I wasn't coming in. I sent an angry, basically suicidal email to my ex girlfriend. I left a "going away and not sure when I'll be back" note for my Mom and brother on the kitchen table. I got in my car and drove a few hundred miles until it was dark. Stupidly, I was drinking along the way and buzzing. Fortunately no one got hurt. I made it to a rest area when it started getting late, and I slept in my car. I woke up the next day and realized I didn't have much money left. Now sober, I sat on a picnic table at that rest stop and thought about what my plan actually was. Would I drive all the way to the west coast and get a job? Do I even have the money to make it there? When I realized I only had enough money to make it home, I realized I was being stupid and decided to just drive home. But I wasn't aware of what I was driving home to. I'd put my family through a day of terror without even realizing it.
My ex had called my Mom about the email I sent her, which meant they looked for me all day and through the night thinking I'd went off to kill myself. I never really had that intention, although for whatever reason I wanted my ex to think I did. The police had been called, and the state patrol were keeping an eye out for me in my state and the 3 surrounding. Not sure how I was never spotted sitting overnight at an interstate rest stop.
I drove home, expecting a bit of concern that I was gone all night, but not expecting everyone to think I was suicidal. My Mom drove me to the police station, and I had a long private meeting with the chief of police. I guess I was convincing enough to him that I wasn't a danger to myself and that it was just a cry for help. After that my Mom put me into some counseling, I went to a few sessions, but before I knew it I was heading to college one state over. I could tell my Mom was concerned about me moving so far from home, but it was actually the best thing for me, and the new city, new people, and challenges of college are what helped me move on.
My Dad and I reconnected just a few years ago when I decided to invite him to my wedding even though we hadn't spoke in several years. He and his new family showed up, and it all went fine. We've been keeping in touch ever since then but it has always been awkward.
I never spoke to that ex again. Not sure if I ever will.