A TEENAGER has posted a picture of herself recovering in hospital after a suicide attempt in an inspirational message of hope to others.
Emma Ferguson thought her life was over when her mother died of cancer and, aged 15, tried to kill herself.
She was saved in the nick of time by a concerned neighbour who broke into her home in Dunblane, Stirling.
Just four years later, Emma, 19, is living life to the full with a devoted boyfriend, a new job and a new home in Glasgow.
Last week, she took the decision to post a picture of herself in hospital shortly after waking up from her failed suicide bid, adding the words: “Remember you CAN do it and WILL get through it.”
Emma’s message has gone viral, with over 57,000 likes and 8,400 retweets since it was posted on Wednesday.
Alongside the hospital bed selfie, Emma posted a recent picture of her with boyfriend Adam Lindores, 19, who she says helped her recovery.
She wrote: “Four years ago I attempted to take my own life and was diagnosed with depression after I lost my mum.
“This year I moved to Glasgow with the love of my life and I am absolutely smashing life. Remember you CAN do it and WILL get through it. #breakthestigma”
Emma was 13 when her mother, Fiona, died of breast cancer. Two years later her depression was so bad she felt she could not continue. Fortunately, her boyfriend at the time sensed something was wrong.
He contacted Emma’s neighbour, a nurse, and mum to her best friend, to go and check on her. The neighbour and her husband had to kick in Emma’s door and found her alive.
Speaking today (TUE), Emma said: “My mum was diagnosed when I was about six or seven. By the end it had spread all over her body to her kidneys and everything. She was on oxygen and just stopped taking it.
“I would say that to anyone going through what I did, and keep yourself busy, find things to do and focus on. If you just sit about in a room all day doing nothing, it does things to you.”
Emma added that her family struggled to cope after her suicide attempt. She said: “My brother was too young to know what was going on, but it did have a big impact on my dad. I lived with my Nanny for a while afterwards, because it was difficult between us, but we’re fine now.”
“The thing that kept me going was my Nanny. She always said to me, there is always a light at the end of the tunnel and it may seem far away or out of reach – but it is always there and you have to keep reaching for it.”
The 19-year-old added that making positive changes towards her future helped her to move on. She said: “It was a spontaneous decision to move to Glasgow, Adam is in second year at uni and the workload is getting harder for him and I wanted a change, so we just did it.
“It’s not as if I feel like I’ve grown up, I just felt like I had achieved something and I wanted to share it with people. I did it partly for me, because I wanted to show how far I’ve come, but I couldn’t believe the response. It has been amazing.”
On social media, users were inspired by Emma’s story.
Mxiri_ said: “You’re making your mum immensely proud.”
TheDeeWhoLived added: “I’ve had depression for years and lost my mum this year so hearing your story gives me hope and strength.”
Northernjenz commented: “It absolutely is. There’s no magic cure and each day can be a struggle…..but it’s keeping that struggle up that counts.”
Siepod added: “Very brave post, and hope you continue to win the battle.”
While Shelbylouise99 said: “Honestly I don’t know you but this is absolutely beautiful. A lot of people feel like they can’t get through it but it’s women like you that can help us. Thank you.”
Kelly Thorpe, from Papyrus, a charity which specialises in prevention of suicide among young people, praised Emma.
She said: “We applaud this young girl for sending out messages of hope to others who may be struggling with life.
“Experiencing loss of a loved one can make us feel very isolated and alone especially in these times of celebration and festivity.”
Kelly, who manages the charity’s helpline, added: “It’s important we look out for each other. If you are concerned about a friend we advise that you open up a sensitive and direct conversation around suicide with them. If you don’t know how to start the conversation we can help you.”
Papyrus say that for confidential, practical help and advice contact HOPELineUK tel 0800 068 41 41, text 07786 209 697 or email [email protected]
James Jopling, executive director of Samaritans Scotland, said: “It is great that it appears Emma is now doing so well after such a tough time in her life.
“We encourage anyone who feels they are struggling or in crisis to seek help before things get too much. That can be talking to friends and family.
“Or if you would rather speak to someone confidentially and anonymously then Samaritans are here around the clock, right throughout the year, by phone or email.”