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Subject: .-. / ..- / - .... . .-. .?
From: L
Date: 14 Jul 2022

i think many people would say the basic thing everyone says after someone kills themselves, something along the lines of "killing yourself is never the answer", but i honestly think that's useless and also quite hypocritical coming from me. i could say something similar to what your parents thought, they didn't ask why you did it since they mostly knew, they just asked why they weren't enough to keep you here. and i don't know about that either. i know people can't cure a mental illness, i've come to realise that more than ever this year, which is why i won't ask that. i also know our relationship, whether it's just about us two or the trio, wasn't the best and it was actually pretty toxic. so i guess i'll just say whatever comes to mind, it's not like you'll ever read this.

i think i do, up to a point, understand why you did what you did because it's not like i've never thought about it myself, but i'll always wonder what i could have done differently. if i didn't tell you i was hurt by what you said would that have changed the fact that the last time we saw each other we fought? and if we hadn't gotten into a fight then would you still be here? if i had reached out after we fought would things have been different?

when someone dies, most people say they remember vividly where they were and what they were doing when they learnt the news, but i don't. to be honest, everything's a blur for me, from the weeks preceeding it to the weeks after it. the whole year after it actually. i don't remember when i learnt about it, and i don't remember how either. i just know i knew somehow, and i didn't really believe it for a really long time too. for a while i tried to persuade myself into thinking i had imagined it all. yet i knew you were no longer here, i was able to say out loud that you were dead, but i never really processed it until april this year, which i think is why i've waited over two years to say all this.

you used to tell me i wasn't allowed to give up if you didn't and i would tell you the same. you see, i was never a fan of this saying, because i always thought i wouldn't make it another week and that once i actually killed myself, you'd take it as a green light for yourself. because i genuinely thought i'd die first (not picturing this as a race or anything, i just really believed that would be the case...) but for a moment saying this worked: i was clean for a while and you were too. we did that for each other. but i knew you weren't doing well. you were very open about that, and i admired that because at the time that to me felt like the bravest thing someone could do: struggling yet using it to help others. it often felt like you were giving up on yourself for others, and you were. you were always there to help others in your own way and i always respected that ability of yours, to always put others on top of your priorities although i knew it was slowly getting you to fall deeper into rock bottom. and i'm sorry i didn't do the same for you, or at least not enough.

one thing you were always upset about was the fact that i never told anyone about how i was feeling, no matter how bad. i know you hated that, and it was eating me alive, you were right about that; but i didn't know what else to do. and the thing is, i talk about it now. very openly. maybe even more than you did. and it's definitely very different, but i can't help but think that it's bringing other people down with me. i can't help but think that i'm hurting people around me because of it. i get what you meant when you said that when people know about this kind of thing they offer you some kind of support you could never get alone, i do, but i don't think i deserve it. i have people in my life now, that i love so incredibly much and i'm so grateful to have them, but seeing them be so kind to me just makes me feel like i'm using them because i can't give anything back. not everyone is worth saving and i think it's unfair people are helping me when i couldn't help you. when i knew just how bad it got for you that april i should've told an adult. a teacher, your parents, anyone that could feasibly have done something. and because i was in the same situation, because i was hiding it too, i thought telling someone was taking away something that should’ve been yours to tell. i didn't take that step, and maybe if i had you'd still be here. up until recently, until someone took that step for me, i didn't realise just how much i fucked up. just how little i did for you. and i want to do something to change that now, but i can't seem to find a way to do so. the only thing i can do is make sure people know about you, just enough to know you were amazing and just enough to know i didn't do what i should've done. i know you said you wanted to be forgotten, but i don't think that's what you really wanted. i think you were just afraid to be remembered as something you weren't proud of, i am too. but i promise, with everything that i have in me, i'm gonna try and tell people about you in a way that makes you shine just as much as you did in real life. i'm sorry i'm not respecting your desire to be forgotten, but no matter how much you wanted that i wouldn't let it happen. not only because i want people to know how awesome you were but also because i can't forget you. i can't let myself do that. even if it hurts and even if thinking about it breaks my heart, i can't ever let that happen. i promised myself that, even if sometimes i feel like i'm forgetting you. well, not you exactly, but everything about you. and i feel bad about forgetting it. i try to go back to places that remind me of you, but it's not enough. you've done so much for me and this can't be all i'm doing for you. i'm forgetting things. your voice, your face, your smile, the way you'd hide your face in your hands when you laughed, the way you'd talk about things you were passionate about with stars in your eyes, the fact that when you laughed a lot your laugh would become silent and you were just wiggling around and your face would become bright red. the way your eyes would sparkle everytime you saw flowers, even the ones you were allergic to. the way you'd hold your elbow when you had a stomachache. everything.

there's so much i should've done, so much i should've said yet i did nothing. which is why this next paragraph is gonna be filled with things i'm sorry i did or didn't do.

i'm sorry i didn't call you because of how insecure i am. i'm sorry i didn't go see you, i'm sorry you were always the one who would come here. i'm sorry the last time we saw each other we fought because of me. i'm sorry the last time we texted we fought again, still because of me. i'm sorry i couldn't heal or take away any of your pain, because trust me if i could i would. i'm sorry i made mistakes and i'm sorry i never made up for them. i'm sorry you're not here to read this, and i'm sorry i'm only saying everything now that it's too late. i'm sorry that im still here. i'm sorry that i got to meet new people that are truly amazing. i'm sorry i still get to smile and laugh when you don't get to do any of that. i'm sorry people are doing for me what i should’ve done for you. i'm sorry people are helping me like i should have helped you. i'm sorry people are here for me when i wasn't here for you. i'm sorry i didn't have the right words, and i'm sorry i pulled you into this. i'm sorry i didn't keep my promise to stay clean, but to be fair you didn't either. i'm sorry i couldn't save you, and i'm sorry i can't save myself like you'd want me to. lastly, i'm sorry for wanting to move on. i know i won't, but i really want to be able to not feel like this. i know this is very selfish, and i'm not saying i want to move on from you, but i want to move on from the guilt i feel trapped in. i want to move on from all the regrets i have, because i think you'd want me to, even if you're still mad at me. because you always wanted that for everyone, even someone you didn't like. you might still be mad at me, and i'm not mad at you for that, i get it i'm mad at myself too. so i'm sorry for that too, i'm sorry for always giving you reasons to be mad at me, because i know you felt guilty everytime, even if you were right to be mad.

we both didn't believe in the fact that time heals everything, and god knows i wish it did, but it doesn't. it's been enough time now where i should’ve healed, at least a bit, but i haven't. not even a tiny bit, nothing has gotten easier. i would even say things have gotten harder. everything seems to be crashing down and falling apart with nothing i can do to make it stop so no, i don't think time heals everything, which is why i don't think i'll live much longer but hey, i said the same two years ago and look at me now, i guess you truly never know what's going to happen in life. i hope we'll get to see each other soon, and maybe go on that trip to new york together.

i love you, i always have, and i always will.
i miss you so much,
and i'm sorry for everything.
- L

p.s.: i did buy you a birthday card that year, and i was planning on sending it, regardless of the fact that we fought before that. thank you for your letter, and i'm sorry you'll never get to receive or read mine. also, i know you've always wanted to go to a pride parade, but you never did. i went twice now, and both times i wish you were here. it's sad you weren't physically here but i swear you were in my heart, which, in my mind, means you were basically there :)