You know how people have group meetings for Alcoholics? I wonder if they have them for mentally ill patients?
I’m depressed. I was diagnosed officially when I was just 17, though I knew and my mother knew when I was very young. But I’m ashamed. I feel abnormal and that I don’t belong. You get that feeling sometimes? Like you’re an outsider? Like people are looking at you with pity but you don’t know why? It’s horrible and it’s extremely lonely because…you see, not every mentally ill patient is EXACTLY the same. Sure, we may show similar symptoms but the reasoning behind those symptoms is hardly ever the same. We may all share similar diagnosis’ and possibly similar situations. But we are NOT the same people…therefore, how could anyone who suffers or doesn’t suffer comprehend EXACTLY what each of us is going through? No one could. Not even Psychologists, Psychiatrists, Counselors or Therapists.
I try having and maintaining a simple conversation with someone without allowing negative thoughts or topics arising and that’s one of the hardest parts: pretending. Pretending everything is okay when they really aren’t. Pretending I’m happy when I’m really not. Smiling when I really want to cry or scream or shout.
Today, the past week, the past month…they have been ‘bad’ day(s). Apparently I’m experiencing a Major Depressive Episode. You know, I never thought I, Megan Ashleigh Hill, would ever be one to have that negative, bitter, ‘depressing’ label thrown onto me. It’s like being labelled gay, lesbian, black, white, yellow, green, purple… LABELS. They are awful! The separate each of us further from each other as if we couldn’t be further apart already.
Situations, circumstances, people, places…they all add to how an individual feels. I have a stalker. I have decided to withdraw from university too. I have moved home to my parents to save money. I don’t feel safe in my job because of my stalker. I have isolated myself so much already…and to have my family and I bicker of something so minute gets to me. I’m in a country who’s people I may not have all met. Yet the small selection I have are the furthest from pleasant.
You know, my depression is more than feeling worthless or unimportant or pathetic. It’s a weed that crawls through my life and eats away at all the beautiful flowers still left. I lose friends because they cannot deal with my mood swings and lack of activity. I have arguments with my parents because I enjoy lounging in my pjs and watching movies or reading or doing absolutely nothing all day. It’s exhausting for them? for you? HOW ABOUT FOR ME? The ONE individual who HAS to live with this disease! The one who cannot explain to anyone else what is going through their minds or how they are feeling because NO ONE ELSE WILL UNDERSTAND/GET IT. I have to rely on MYSELF to pick MYSELF up and smile. When I have a ‘good day’…I CELEBRATE by myself because often it’s wrong timing for everyone else. And once again, I feel lonely.
I cannot begin to make you aware of what depression does for the sufferer. For those of you who don’t believe it exists, you HAVE TO buck up your ideas buddy because it’s people like you who often make people who suffer feel worse. I wish the one person who has most control over my life, my dad, could see and understand. My life would be so much easier.
If I can reach out to ONE person today by posting this, my day will be made.
Take it seriously. Hold out a hand for someone who suffers any mental illness and provide that shoulder for them to cry on. Be understanding and let them speak negatively from time to time…but also kick their asses and do something with them. Don’t push them away because of their illness. Invite them out for tea or lunch. Anything to involve them.
Avoiding them like they are the plague only makes it worse- for you and for them.