I doubt that I’m actually going to kill myself…

March 29th, 2009by DanielA

…but man, does the thought seem appealing at times.  It’s been cathartic to read through some of these posts.  They really do let me know that I’m not completely alone in this, and I want to thank the creators of this site right now.  It’s interesting to see the range of people and problems that are out there, and recognize where I fit in.  Some people on the site seem to be reacting to moments of incredible emotion while others are feeling the weariness of long periods of depression, numbness, and a general lack of interest in life.  I think I’m in the latter category.

By any objective standard, I don’t have a bad life.  I’m 23 years old, I’m male, I’m white, I’m in graduate school, I can probably find a means of support should I become a colossal failure financially, and I’m pretty good-looking.

Anyone should be able to take those pieces and make a good life out of them, right?  I think so, and I do hold genuine hope that I may still be able to do so.  At the same time, I’m often overwhelmed but a complete lack of interest in anything that goes on around me and a general sense of pointlessness about my (potentially bright) future.  These feelings have been growing more noticeable since I graduated college (another thing I have in my favor) but their root can probably be traced back to my childhood.  So how do I get over it?  How do I keep from wondering about whether it would easier to shoot myself in the head than to go on and endure another day of feeling futile, small, and insignificant?  How do I become happy?  I’ve heard it said that people need only two things to be happy: work and love.  Let’s look at them separately.

Work

I have no job, but as long as I’m going to school I can probably avoid feeling too inadequate about it.  I’m currently living on my parent’s dime, which makes me feel very much the sponge.  Without getting into exactly what I’m studying, I’ll just say that while it has the potential to generate wealth eventually, I’m completely uninterested in it and I’m not very good at it.  I share the feeling of many here that I’m dumb, and I have a terrible fear that when all is said and done I’ll have a fancy degree but lack the brain power to actually do anything with it (kinda like my undergraduate degree!), thus wasting some three years of my life and rendering my parent’s investment pointless.  And what if I do get a job in this field: will I work the rest of my life at something I find completely pointless and dull?

Were I to try and get a job right now I doubt I could do it.  I have absolutely no useful skills (I feel increasingly betrayed by my undergraduate experience), and while I might be able to land a minimum wage, no-skills-required job, doing so would just validate the thought that, despite my extensive, expensive training, I’m too dumb to do anything I couldn’t have done without that training.  It’s hard to feel good about yourself when you know, deep inside, that several years of your life were wasted.

Of course, I have no one but myself to blame for that.  Ever since I was a young child, I never took much interest in anything.  I tried my best to hide myself from those around me in junior high, in high school, in college.  This might be the result of some emotional *****-slapping I endured from very close friends in junior high school, it might be something inborn.  Whatever it’s origin, I don’t feel the need, much less the desire, to do anything at all with my life, which keeps me from forming the motivation needed to achieve, excel, and in general do anything that I might find meaningful.  I don’t think I was always this way: I remember happy days in grade school when I would play make-believe games with friends, draw, read, just run around, become interested in things.  I don’t know exactly when or why that changed but I haven’t felt that way about anything in a long time.  I miss it and want like crazy to feel it again, but don’t know at all how to do that.

I think it’s less a job and more a sense of purpose I need.

Love

I have good family.  Two parents who are still together and don’t have any gross emotional problems, two brothers who, while not perfect, are at least on speaking terms with me.  So why do they feel like strangers so much of the time?  Likewise, why do the few friends I’ve made (a life spent in hiding hasn’t netted me too many buddies), feel distant and uninterested in me?  I’m terrible at making friends or talking to people in general; I marvel at people who are able to just go up and start a conversation with someone, and I’m absolutely floored by people who are able to turn that conversation into something that might last beyond the immediate words spoken.  I suck at communication.  I’m very much closed off emotionally, I feel like no one would be interested in hearing anything I might have to say, and I don’t know how to get better.  I’m just not used to interacting with people on normal terms.  While other kids were out playing sports or going to bars or pursuing their like interest I was holed up in my room playing videogames which, while an interest in itself, I never pursued with others.  I feel like I have absolutely nothing in common with anybody else that might be the basis for a relationship of any kind, platonic, romantic, professional, and everything else in between.

Several people on here have talked about their romantic lives.  If you had asked me about mine one year ago, I would have had to tell you that I didn’t have nor had I had ever had one.  I knew pretty early in my life that I was a gay male.  I never struggled with it but nor did I act on it.  Then, when I was 20, I decided I wanted to lose my virginity, got online and promptly did so.  Now, if I can be said to have a hobby, sex is it.  I do it often, most of the time with people I haven’t met before, and almost always facilitated by the internet.  Otherwise I’d have to talk to them beforehand, you see.  I know that what I’m doing is pretty disgusting, but it fills the time and it takes my mind off my troubles, at least for a little while.  Most of the time I do it so I can have someone to talk to, since I don’t seem to feel comfortable talking with people I’ve met outside the bedroom.  I’m not saying that to excuse my behavior, just help explain it.

I’ve had one relationship in all my life that approximated something romantic.  We met through the internet a little under a year ago and he was a great guy.  We went out for about seven months.  The entire experience was completely and wholly new to me, but it was fantastic.  I’d seen my friends weave in and out of relationships but honestly never thought it would happen to me, despite the fact that I’m not a bad-looking guy.  I always figured my shyness or else my general sense of worthlessness would prevent me from having any relationship that lasted beyond orgasm.  I enjoyed that relationship more, I think, than I even admitted to myself, but in large part I treated it the same way I seem to treat a lot of things in my life: without (visible) passion, and eventually he left me for a gangly, rude little fashion-victim named Colin.  … ahem.  Sorry; still a little bitter about that.  I’m a pretty level-headed guy and don’t easily display emotion, but when I got the news that he was leaving me I buckled over, fell on the floor and sobbed uncontrollably; I’d never felt anything like it.  Anyway, I’d love to feel the way I felt during the relationship again, but what could I possibly offer anyone?  Who wants to date a penniless, slutty, self-obsessed, directionless, passionless nerd who practically writes his autobiography online?

In my darker moods, I think about suicide.  Why should I live long enough to see myself become destitute?  To see myself continue to be alone?  To spend my life doing something I’m not interested in, with nothing to look forward to?  Happily, these are for the moment moods that come and go rather than the norm.  I have hope that I’ll one day become interested in something, that I’ll one day develop enough of a personality to actually enjoy being around people, that one day I’ll do something that gives back to the world and fulfills me in some way, and that one day I might share all of that with someone special.  I just have no idea how to begin doing all of that, and I’m afraid that if I don’t start soon, my isolation will only deepen, and the dark moods will fill all of my time.

Again, thanks for making this site.  This isn’t something I’ve ever talked about openly and I liked getting it out.  I realize that my story isn’t as dire as many on the site, and I appreciate the opportunity for it to be placed among them.

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