A Hemel Hempstead resident – and founder of a mental health support group – celebrated her life on the one-year anniversary of her suicide attempt by walking over the bridge where she tried to take her own life.
Zoe Godden, who a year ago found herself having suicidal thoughts while standing on the bridge near the Kodak building, worked hard to reach a better mental state and is now helping save lives with YOUnique Minds, the support group she founded.
On August 1, with the support of some team members and her friends, Zoe walked over the bridge again.
Speaking about her experience, she said: “The build up to that day was very emotional, I massively struggled throughout the week with the survivor’s guilt. I went through the emotions of thinking my best friend would have been feeling down this week because I wouldn’t have been here.
“I’m a single mum and I’ve got two beautiful children, I was thinking this wouldn’t have been a celebration for them, it would have been the worst year of their life if I had gone ahead that day.”
Zoe said that everything she has been through in her life – being sexually abused as a child, mentally abused in a relationship she was in for 10 years and attempting suicide – led her to the vital work she does now.
She continued: “I’ve now turned something completely around, to be able to help other people not to feel like that anymore is great.
“People know if they’re not getting the support they need, YOUnique Minds is there and they will get a response within 20-30 mins.”
Zoe and the team members aimed to leave some positive notes on the bridge, but they will now do it at Gadebridge Park.
She said: “We couldn’t do them at the bridge because we were told they would be removed. Because we do a lot of meetings at Gadebridge Park we decided to tie them around the trees there.”
Zoe added: “What a year and who would’ve thought the group would grow so much in such a short time? I’m excited to see what happens next year.
“The little old me was told over the years that I wouldn’t achieve anything and now I’ve created this mental health group which seems to support so many. I’m a little bit proud to be honest.”