Hi, I’ve been fighting against depression for 15 years and I think I’ve finally given up on that battle. I can’t take it anymore. I just create havoc around me, and I drag people’s lives into misery with me.
I’m the only child of a deeply disturbed and disturbing woman. To everyone who doesn’t know her she seems to be a loving, caring person, quirky at most, but to those who are near her, she comes out as she is: plain scary. She’s violent, contradictory, manipulative. Ever since I was a young child I stood no chance to grow up to be normal, to be social, to be healthy. She’d hit me and then cry about it, punch me until I bled, then be sorry about it, she’d hurt me and then she’d rush me to the hospital screaming out of her head for a doctor to see me, to save me. That’s all I knew, I had no father, no siblings, no one to come between my mother and I. I always thought she adored me – because she never missed a chance to tell me nobody would ever love me like her, nobody would ever care about me, it was just us two against the world – and it was too late when I started realizing that other people had it better, had it different, that I didn’t need to stay.
I was already broken. I was a special child, extraordinary, talented, smart, pretty. I look back and I can’t help but feel sorry for the child I was. I was scared of everything, of everyone, I was bullied at school because my mother insisted on pigtails and cutesy dresses until I was way too old to go to school like that. I felt stupid, fat, ugly and useless, because that was one of my mother’s favorite words towards me: useless. Why had she had just one child? Why did I repay like this all her efforts? I was a curse, a punishment.
I was never able to bond with other people, I was afraid and skeptical. My mother always said friends didn’t exist. They just use you and dispose of you. Every time she’d do someone a favor – and she did this all the time – she was prompt to remind me how people were just using her. How nobody was good but her, how nobody was selfless but her. And I learned to mistrust and hate the world.
Men were evil, they only wanted sex. Women were liars, they only wanted your boyfriend, the favors you could do, your money, your homework. I loved a man once, and my mother pulled me out of university and locked me in my room so I would break up with him. Until I graduated from school and found a job I didn’t dare move out. My mother would call my boss every morning to see if I had arrived at work. It was humiliating. Or she’d show up at my office. When I moved out she didn’t talk to me for a year except to abuse me over the phone, and to cry, and to say that’s how you repay me all the years of efforts, being a single mother and working for you, you owe me. You owe me your school, your clothes, your job. It was true. Being a single mother she did send me to very expensive schools and bought me very expensive clothes, clothes that I didn’t have the right to choose, but still. Now I understand it’s another way for her to manipulate me. She always took me to the best private doctors and paid a lot for surgeries and treatments I probably didn’t need.
I started cutting, drinking, smoking. I’ve never done drugs, I’ve thought about it, but I draw a line because I was raised too good. Too docile. Too eager to please. Too legal. I became angry. Nothing I ever did was good enough. I won medals for sports, I graduated summa cum laude, I was a proficient dancer, an exceptional public speaker, I was beautiful. I should have had the chance to be happy. I should have had the chance to be loved and cared for, nurtured. But I didn’t blame her or made her responsible of anything until now that I’m in my 30s, because I thought she’d change, she’d understand, I thought it wasn’t her fault, that she didn’t mean any harm.
I even started trying to fulfill my mother’s expectations subconsciously. I got married to a man she liked and I didn’t care for. I got a divorce and promptly got married again to another man that she liked and I hated. I said to myself I did it because I wanted to, but that’s not true, because I’m a lesbian. She beat that out of me. She’d call me names, push me to the shower and throw ice cold water at me. What she didn’t know about my second husband was that he is a perv and he’d let me sleep with women as long as he was invited.
There was one more thing to do to tick all of my mother’s boxes, and that was to get pregnant. Fortunately, neither my husband nor I could conceive. To fail that ultimate test devastated me. It made me feel like a completely useless person. I had convinced myself that I wanted to have a child so bad that I was sunk into a depression so deep that I quit my job and spent half a year stuck in bed, drinking. My husband didn’t care. He just allowed me to wallow in my depression, thinking that a psychiatrist was not needed, that I could just snap out of it, man up and get on with life. What else did I want? I had him, the wonderful husband with the expensive penthouse and the latest model car, the blue eyes and generous wallet. I can’t take it, I’d say, and his answer would be How much money do you want to feel better?
I overdosed with sleeping pills once and he just waited for me to come back to my senses on my own. I woke up in a puddle of my own vomit. I was bruised and hurt, I had thrown myself down the stairs in my despair. Nothing happened. So I got a dog. I manned up, like he said, and I adopted a dog, the one reason that would get me out of bed every day. I still have my dog, she’s my beacon of light, and I adopted two cats -one who has an incurable disease- to up the ante, to make sure I don’t die, to make sure I’m not a coward and I stick around because “it gets better”. Everyone says it gets better. As a matter of fact, it doesn’t. It gets worse.
My mother made me a guilt ridden person. I feel guilty of not being the wife my husband wants. I feel guilty because I only take and take and I’m unable to give, I’m paralyzed with fear, with guilt, with remorse, with emptiness. I have no friends because I never learned how to make friends, and I have no family. My mother doesn’t love me, and she doesn’t talk to me anymore because I want to get a divorce. But I’m scared and I can’t find a way out.
I’m not in my country anymore, my husband took me away to his country. I have no job, some savings, my dog and my two cats. I’ve never failed to land a job, a good job, I just can’t hold onto them, I can’t go on for an extended period of time without crashing and burning. My husband hates me because I can’t satisfy him anymore, and I feel I owe him because he’s paid so much to relocate my pets to have them with me.
I got a girlfriend, thinking that I could pull my shit together and I could be who I’ve ever wanted to be: a lesbian. Just being myself, a normal person, just starting again. But I need care, I need nurturing, I need someone who can help me in the complex process of constructing myself, and my girlfriend has got tired of tagging along and waiting for me and putting up with my depression, and she has started mistreating me and talking to me like my mother does, saying how much I owe her but how she won’t let me leave her.
If I leave her and I leave him I’d have no one, nothing, no friends, no support, no family, nothing. I’ve always been strong, I’ve always said that I won’t kill myself, that anything is better than killing myself, but it’s not. I’ve reached a point where nothing gives me any joy, guilt is overwhelming, the nagging thought that I’m wasting people’s time and energy, that I suck happiness out of those who have loved me because I’m unable to correspond. I don’t have it in me to go on.