This is my first real attempt at posting anything of this nature online, so bear with me.
On the outside I’m this very bubbly, cheerful person, one who constantly smiles and tries to cheer everyone up. You wouldnâ€™t think I was the type that underwent depression if you met me. In fact, a part of me still denies that Iâ€™m depressed or capable of suicidal thoughts. And yet, deep down, I feel dead inside and these days, I just want to sleep.
Iâ€™ve no idea where this emptiness began, perhaps during my last years of high school? For years, though, the emptiness didnâ€™t matter. I had my family. We grew up poor, living off of food stamps. We didnâ€™t have a home until I turned 11. The relatives that would take us in really treated us like shit. Hell, I still remember the time, as a child, when my dadâ€™s mother didnâ€™t feed me out of spite against my mother. I was so hungry that I threw up. It pissed her off, mostly because she had to clean up my vomit. She was also very stingy about us using her bathroom so there were some nights when my mother had us take our business outside in the lawn, in the middle of the night so no one would see.
Still, like I said, none of this mattered to me. I still had a great sister I was free to share anything with. And I had a father who cared and protected me and who introduced me to all the science-fiction and horror movies I love today. Finally, I had an incredible, strong-willed mother who would always tell me â€˜I may not have much for you, but what I have I will give to you.â€™ She would also tell me that, while she didnâ€™t have money, she would give me time to pursue whatever I wanted to do in life. It was this tight, however small, family unit that kept me from feeling really â€˜emptyâ€™.
Then college time rolled in. That was the first time I experienced depression. Back then, I assumed it was homesickness.
I was admitted into RISD shortly after graduating high school, you see. Honestly, I didnâ€™t want to go to Rhode Island, but my art instructor kept insisting it was a good for me. In fact, I remember how she took me out of class one day and made me promise her that I would go to Rhode Island. She had this glaring look on her face and told me sheâ€™d be very displeased if I didnâ€™t go. She even got the principal to talk to my parents, just so they would let me go to Rhode Island. There were others at our school who also insisted I go when they discovered the news I had a full scholarship to it. They even donated winter clothes and art supplies to me. Basically, everyone was rooting for me. I felt a lot of pressure, so I just went for it, trying to convince myself they were right.
But when I arrived I felt miserable and very much alone there. I cried constantly. I couldnâ€™t eat. I tried to make friends but it didnâ€™t take. I tried to draw but had little to no inspiration, save for sadness. I came home shortly after. Because I felt I failed everyone from my high school I made no mention of my return, especially to my art teacher.
I spent roughly a year or so at home, feeling very worthless and ashamed I couldnâ€™t live up to everyoneâ€™s expectations. When I finally did get back to school, it would take me 8 years to get my Bachelor degrees. Simply put, I kept jumping back and forth. Even though I was a straight-A-McNair-Scholar student, since the Rhode Island incident I no longer felt I had a direction.
Other things changed in my life too. Two years ago my mother died. During one of her dialysis treatments she had developed a brain hemorrhage and died days later. I was there to see it all happen, from the time I noticed her face go slack when she came home with a â€˜headacheâ€™, to the time she was in the hospital vomiting her own feces and suffering bloody seizures, to the last breath she made in the hospice. I made the decision to see her death, somehow feeling that I had to for the very same reason she experienced my birth.
It was fortunate for my mother, then, that she lived long enough to see my sister give birth to a baby boy the year before. She was worried she wouldnâ€™t live long enough to see one of us give birth to a grandson. Thankfully, my sister did.
For myself, I was alone and single, unable to find anyone to share my life with. During the last year at my college, I remember taking long walks between classes, watching couples pass by me and wondering if this was the year Iâ€™d find someone. I wasnâ€™t too depressed, though. Shortly after my momâ€™s passing, I grew close to my dad. We confided in each other, going to the movies and eating out, trying to make new happy memories in honor of my mother.
I eventually found someone who was interested in me in that year. My first ever girlfriend, in fact. It was also a long-distance relationship. What a surprise that was for me. I never thought the first person Iâ€™d be with would be a girl, let alone, someone from many states away. Still, I was excited that someone was interested in me and I had always been open-minded to anyone and anything, so long as they loved me.
I wish I could write how everything pulled together, how my father and I remained close and how my relationship with my girlfriend blossomed and overcame the long-distance barrier. I wish I could say that, after graduation that I found a good job. But everything turned downhill from there.
Iâ€™m currently unemployed, trying to find work while using the money I gained from selling my art to pay for my student loans. I was supposed to be employed by a studio but nothing has come from it. We havenâ€™t had much clients and it took about a month or so to get my first (and only) check. Iâ€™m practically surviving by a thread and am looking for any stable job now.
Meanwhile, my relationship with my girlfriend is estranged at best. We rarely talk, only once a week. Even though I see her message people on twitter or facebook, she doesnâ€™t bother to email me anymore like she used to. Hell, in the first year we emailed each other 2-3 times a day. In the second year, she sort of lost interest and reduced it to once a week. Nowadays, nothing. She feels that a phone call once a week, even if itâ€™s just for a few hours, is enough for â€˜us.â€™ In addition, she tells me that work comes first and that sheâ€™s tired of having emotional-based discussions with me. And when we talk on the phone, she sounds like sheâ€™d rather be working than talking with me, which is why I often offer to cut the talk short to save her the trouble from staying on the phone much.
When we finally see each other in person, things arenâ€™t any different. I can tell sheâ€™s uncomfortable spending time alone with me. I practically have to be the one to insist we spend â€˜aloneâ€™ time. But sheâ€™d rather just hang out with her friends and have me along for the ride. In the presence of her â€˜friendsâ€™, I am rarely addressed me as the girlfriend. Instead, Iâ€™m mostly referred to as the person â€˜she is seeingâ€™, even though we have been â€˜seeingâ€™ and â€˜datingâ€™ each other exclusively for close to three years now. There are other things Iâ€™ve had to adjust to as well, like being OK with her talking to all her exâ€™s as well as people who have expressed interest in her. She tells me Iâ€™m being selfish or too emotional when I tell her how uncomfortable it makes me feel when I have to be friends with her exâ€™s.
In terms of intimacy, there is none of that. I canâ€™t kiss her. I have to wait until she allows me to kiss her. Otherwise, sheâ€™ll make up some lame excuse like â€˜her throat is soreâ€™ or flatly tell me â€˜noâ€™. Meanwhile, everything revolves around work, work, and more work. Sometimes I try to make an excuse to steer the conversation toward sex or some other type of intimate talk. But she gets either annoyed or disinterested. Until we live together, she tells me, there is no need to talk about stuff like that, especially sex. As a result, I feel worthless and ugly. Neglected and empty. I feel like a child while she is the adult, telling me â€˜how it really isâ€™ and that I need to grow up.
Weâ€™ve been through a lot. And sheâ€™s been there for me when I needed her the most, which is why I still care about her. And we constantly talk about moving in together. But I have my doubts now. In our past conversation, it was obvious how much of a burden I was going to be for her, especially since sheâ€™d have to sacrifice her drawing time for me.
As if dealing with an estranged relationship wasnâ€™t bad enough, recently, my father found a new woman in his life. While I am happy he is moving on, heâ€™s a different man now. The transition was absolutely painful when all of it began. At first, he didnâ€™t talk to me. Whenever I tried spending time with him heâ€™d make excuses and say he had to work late hours or rush off. And when heâ€™d come home heâ€™d forget to stock food in the fridge so there were days Iâ€™d go without food. Everything just revolved around his girlfriend. He even went through all the money mom left us to pay for her fancy dinners and purchases. Now weâ€™re dead broke. Back in October, he forgot about my sisterâ€™s babyâ€™s birthday and didnâ€™t get him anything. Yet, he asked my sister for money to buy a present for his girlfriend. This past Thanksgiving also sucked. He literally spent five minutes chowing down the dinner I made, before we even had the chance to say our Thanksgiving prayer, just so he could leave and pick up his girlfriend. In total, he spent about 15 minutes with us in Thanksgiving.
Dealing with the loss of my mother has been difficult enough for me. But now, I must accept the new woman now living with us; fucking in the same bed my mom slept it and cooking with the same stove my mom used. I hate living in this house. Half the time I have to hear my dad and her make out, even when Iâ€™m in the same room with them. Itâ€™s like Iâ€™m not even there. Sometimes I can tell by the tone of my dadâ€™s voice he does not want me here anymore. Iâ€™m a burden to him. He wants me to move out, get a job, and just find a man. Heâ€™s in complete denial that Iâ€™m with a girl. In fact, he told me not to tell his girlfriend about it since he doesnâ€™t know â€˜how sheâ€™ll take itâ€™.
So. Yes. Depression. There are so many other things that have happened that there isnâ€™t room to type it here. But all I know is that emptiness I initially felt when I was young has grown strong enough to be an everyday presence for me. I am empty. And everyday I felt like deadweight to the people I care about, whether for my sister, my girlfriend, or my father. I am the person who â€˜fell behindâ€™ and because of that I feel very alone and empty. Useless and worthless.
I find myself every day trying to â€˜wake upâ€™ and put on a smile for everyone, trying to make everyone comfortable. Even after my mother died, because so many people became uncomfortable, I tried to put on a happy face. But nowâ€¦ whatever strength I have is quickly dwindling fast. Iâ€™ve lost weight. I oversleep and want to say in bed all day. I sometimes get abdominal pains and throw up. I cry everyday. Itâ€™s also hard to stay focused long enough to draw something that would normally take me half the time to produce.
About the only things I use to combat my depression has been hours of games and movies. But now, Iâ€™m starting to consider suicide. It never reached this point, ever. I always fought the urge to not think about it. But now Iâ€™m scared. I know enough of myself to know that, once I seriously think of something, I will eventually go down that path and follow through with it. Iâ€™ve tried telling my girlfriend about these thoughts, but itâ€™s tough talking to her about it. She finds the whole suicide thing to be â€˜emoâ€™ and stupid. As for my sister, she tells me itâ€™s not a big deal and that everyone goes through those thoughts. So now I am here, trying to put my words out there to people who *do* understand what Iâ€™m going through, trying to save myself while I still can.
About the only thing trying to stop me right now is the fact that I donâ€™t want to fail at life. Iâ€™ve endured so many trials. It is a miracle I am still here. Iâ€™d hate for me to finally give in to the emptiness growing inside me. But that empty feeling grows strong every day. Itâ€™s to the point where I no longer have the urge to call for help from my girlfriend or sister anymore. If I commit suicide, it will happen on a day least expected. I just hope itâ€™ll be a quick, painless one. The last thing Iâ€™d want is to half-ass it, survive and get sent to the hospital and slap a large financial bill on my dad to pay for my recovery. I donâ€™t have health insurance after all. I canâ€™t afford it.
In the end, I donâ€™t want to be a burden to anyone anymore.