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Expector73


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Posted Sun Sep 29th, 2013 11:40pm Post subject: Depression

My depression is tearing my family apart. I am an adolescent who after a months stay in hospital following a suicide attempt, my second in two months, was discharged on Friday. I am by no means well yet, if you are somebody who considers depression an illness. I have a long way to go before I am fully recovered, able to approach the world in a healthy, rational way, which at this moment in time I find myself unable to do. It has been almost a year since the first signs of depression arose, where shortly after Christmas I found myself feeling sad for no particular reason. I merely chalked it up to a case of the January blues. But it only deteriorated from there. By May I had resorted to self harm as a coping mechanism. Upon this discovery, my mother arranged for me to speak to my guidance teacher at school for support. I found it extremely difficult to open up, something which, I'm afraid, has not improved over time. I find it very difficult to talk to people, as I live in constant fear of people's judgement and disapproval, and I hate myself for it. Anyway, these sessions didn't help, and by the end of June, I had decided I couldn't go on. Suicide was my only way out, It wasn't a cry for help, as so many people later said. I had grown tired of trying to be happy when it seemed that everything was against me. I gave up. Took the easy way out. So on the last day of school, I had a plan. I would go to school as normal, then return home, where I would ingest every pill in the house. As I left to school that day, I didn't feel relief that the suffering would soon be over. I felt afraid. Death didn't seem any less frightening because I was inflicting it on myself. David Foster Wallace said, "The so-called ‘psychotically depressed’ person who tries to kill herself doesn’t do so out of quote ‘hopelessness’ or any abstract conviction that life’s assets and debits do not square. And surely not because death seems suddenly appealing. the person in whom Its invisible agony reaches a certain unendurable level will kill herself the same way a trapped person will eventually jump from the window of a burning high-rise. Make no mistake about people who leap from burning windows. Their terror of falling from a great height is still just as great as it would be or you or me standing speculatively at the same window just checking out the view; i.e. the fear of falling remains constant. the variable here is the other terror, the fire’s flames: when the flames get close enough, falling to death becomes the slightly less terrible of two terrors. It’s not desiring the fall; it’s the terror of the flames. And yet nobody down on the sidewalk, looking up and yelling “Don’t!” and “Hang on!”, can understand the jump. Not really. You’d have to have personally been trapped and felt flames to really understand a terror way beyond falling." He explained it far better than I ever could. Long story short, I didn't succeed, and that was how I found myself in hospital speaking to the crisis team. The summer that followed consisted of endless appointments in psychiatrists offices, prescriptions for anti-depressants, and in general, an awful lot of structure and organisation. And so, I returned to school. Everyone thought I was doing well. But I wasn't. I returned to school, and seeing other teenagers with their happy-go-lucky lifestyles, with their friends, relationships and discussions of the parties they attended over the summer, I was reminded that I had no friends, no relationship, that I had spent my summer explaining to people why I nearly put myself in a come by taking every form of medication that was in my possession. And I had brought it all on myself, by being a socially awkward, insecure, anxious, pessimistic form of a human being. So school carried on, and after about two weeks after returning home, I was about to make my way to the nearby train station, when my mother and stepfather returned home. They had received a call from my guidance teacher expressing concerns over my well-being. And so it all came out. And that was how I ended up staying in hospital for just under five weeks. And now I am home, but things are far from normal. I have an uncle who I have always been very close to, and he has always been, if I'm honest, my favourite family member. This uncle however, has always held the view that mental illness is something invented to excuse bad behaviour, and has always mocked people diagnosed with depression, so you can understand my concerns that this incident could lead him to cast judgement on me and effect our relationship. My mother did her best to reassure me that I had nothing to worry about, but following a conversation that took place between my mother and uncle that night, it would seem that my concerns were justified, as he revealed in his texts that he didn't believe I was ill, and that I had brought it all in myself by not being sociable enough. And as hurt as I was by those comments, and as rejected as I feel, I have to admit the truth, which is that he is right. I did bring it all on myself. I started out in a dark tunnel if you will, where I continually walked, and there were many occasions where I could see light; A way out of the tunnel, but instead I continued to walk into the darkness. A rather poor analogy perhaps, but hopefully you get the point I was trying to make. So, after finally coming to believe that not everything was not my fault, that my constant feeling of wrongdoing was inaccurate, it seems that everything I believed was true. When Quadrophenia was released in 1973, it included a booklet with a text version of the story. In the story, there's a mention of a sign saying, "Paranoiacs are just people with some idea of what's really going on." And while I have never found these words particularly comforting, in my current predicament, they have never seemed more true.


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Andrew Lawson


Member

Posted Tue Oct 1st, 2013 12:14pm Post subject: Depression

Your posting has moved me considerably, and as someone who has suffered on and off with depression myself I can understand something of what you're going through. You aren't alone, do please try and remember that. Fortunately the stigma of depression seems to be slowly fading and the more of us who are brave enough to come forward and open up about it like yourself the better.
Stephen's brave documentary re. his own experiences really helped me personally, before that I really felt no one else felt the way I did. I do hope this doesn't sound trite but I have been surprised to find over the years that the sun really does come out again, no matter how dark things may have have been at the time. If you can hold on to that old saying you will in time find it's true, please believe me.
The thing that struck me when reading your post was how eloquently you expressed yourself. You write with a maturity far surpassing your years. I feel you have a gift there, a real talent.
Have you considered studying creative writing?
I really feel you have a valuable contribution to make, please please hang in there!

Andrew Lawson

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Expector73


Member

Posted Thu Oct 3rd, 2013 9:18pm Post subject: Depression

Thank you very much for your kind words Andrew. It has made my day. I must say your comment on my writing with a maturity surpassing my years, while extremely flattering, and I am very grateful, it also reminds me of one of biggest struggles I face daily. I am only 13 years old, yet already I can feel my childhood like innocence slipping away, where there was nothing to worry about, an adult would take care of it. Most of the time I wasn't even aware of any problem arising. But now, knowing that I will never be able to return to that lifestyle, and feeling like I've frittered it away, is hard. Really hard. And it doesn't get any easier. I suppose I've just went my entire life thinking that I was always going to be someone. But I won't. I don't matter. I'll live out my life in crushing mediocrity, maybe having a few laughs along the way, and then, when all is said and done, there will be no great story to tell, no great adventure. People always say that these are suppose to be the greatest years of your life, but I already have so many regrets. Is this all my life is destined to be? Replaying every scenario in my head, rethinking what I should have said and done? Of all sad words of tongue and pen, the saddest are these, it might have been, as the poet said. I just really struggle to convince myself that it's worth the pain and hardship. And then I'm filled with self loathing for wanting to take the easy way out. I could go on for hours but I think I've rambled enough. If you've taken the time to read this drivel Andrew, thank you very much, it means a lot.


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