I do feel like sometimes the world is closing in on me. I have moments when I would have crying fits that seem to never stop. There are times when it feels as though you’ve tried everything to be happy, but, you can’t.
I’m broken inside. Just like many out there. I feel helpless, hopeless. It’s not because I’m not a strong person. It’s not because I gave up trying. Something just seems to be missing. I’m not emotionally vacant, in fact, I’m the exact opposite. When too many emotions have been repressed because you are trying to be that happy person, and it backfires on you.
I say I’m broken, but I know I can be fixed. I just haven’t found that solution yet. I’ve tried alcohol. I’ve tried all kinds of drugs. I’ve tried therapy. I’ve tried killing myself. I’ve tried just talking to friends. I’ve tried crying it out. I’ve tried to forget about my problems. I’ve tried to box the problems up. I’ve tried to write it down on paper. I’ve tried to write songs.
I’ve always seen myself as the protector of the people I truly care about. My people know I’m always there for them regardless of time of day. I have never tried to fix anyone, and I never intend to, and I suppose that’s what makes me invaluable to these people. While I’m always there for someone, it’s hard for me to seek help from the same people. Not because I don’t value them or think they can’t help, but because I want to protect them from me. I have a gift of sucking people into this depressive black hole. It might not be clinical depression, but it is enough for me to not want to get through the day.
You have probably heard this phrase before, “I’m never alone, but I’m always lonely”. I have never found another phrase that has held such truth before. I’ve been the kind of person that has never had an alone moment. I thought I was a social butterfly, but now that I’m older, I do think that it has been to compensate for the loneliness I actually feel inside.
I write, because I don’t know how else to communicate with another human being with such intensity. I feel comfortable hiding behind a screen, never knowing how the person who reads this responds. I can take criticism well. But I can’t take something much worse – the nonverbals – the way someone’s face reacts when I say something. I also cannot verbalize my most intimate thoughts and emotions without falling apart.
I hide in my room because I don’t know how to act in front of the people I love anymore. It is painful for me because I’m lonely inside, but I can’t let them know it, even though they probably do. It is selfish of me to interact with people when I’m hurting inside. It is selfish of me to lay my problems unto the world when other people are happy. There it is – that protector part that people don’t understand.
I am about to write something I probably shouldn’t. But if it helps one person that reads this, that’s good enough.
I lost a best friend 7 years ago. I tell people it’s cancer, because she did have cancer. But the reality is, she committed suicide – she overdosed on cocaine, went in and out of coma for a few days, and finally her body gave up. She was like me. She was a protector. She was my protector. She kept all of her pain inside until one day, it was too much to bear. I’ve had quite a number of those days happen after she died. And the first time I tried to off myself, I understood. I understood the amount of pain you have to feel inside to feel like that is your only way out. I understood the loneliness it felt because you didn’t want to “bother” anyone with your “irrelevant issues”. I understood what it meant to be the ‘protector’ – to have everyone’s pain, but never wanting others to carry yours.
Even though I knew it was wrong, it never stopped me from trying. I knew it was a selfish thing to do to end your pain, only to inflict more upon others. Some call it the cowardly way out. I do agree with this statement. However, I do know how it feels as though it is the bravest thing to do in the moment. Last year I made the decision to go. I decided that the best way was to drink massive amounts of liquor so that I’d go with a buzz. I didn’t want to leave a suicide note explaining why because I didn’t believe in it. I never said any goodbyes.I wasn’t happy leading up to that moment because I wasn’t content with what I wanted to do. I didn’t want to cease existing, but I wanted to cease my pain. I felt guilty, but I felt like I had no choice. When I felt like something was wrong, I thought that the best thing to do was to go lay down in the bathtub, you know, just in case I puked on myself when I go. Well, that plan faltered because I passed out midway and somebody heard the fall and intervened and basically kept me alive.
Last month, someone close to me also attempted suicide. Plenty of pills, heaps of alcohol. She called me to tell me she loved me, but my gut told me something was amiss. The protector in me made sure someone went over to her place to check on her, and I’m glad I did. Because honestly, I’d lose my shit if another person my heart is at home with, left me. Since then, I’ve been having trouble sleeping because I’d keep having nightmares about this. While I don’t condone it, I’m glad she tried, and failed. Because it woke me up. I realized in that moment that even though my life is fucked up in its own way, it doesn’t give me a reason to stop trying to make it better. Because the hurt I felt, the way my heart broke again when she did it, is something I never want to wish on my worst enemy. And if you ever get to the point that I was, just remember if there’s a will, there’s a way.
I still have maladaptive coping skills – that I won’t deny. I started to drink excessively but stopped myself because I know how I will get if I make it the solution to fighting my demons. I still have a lot to learn about myself, and knowing this is what makes me not want to give up. I hope peace comes easier to you, because this feeling of hopelessness is crippling. But I guess I do still have some hope. I do want to give myself a chance to grow, to learn, to be better, to be truly happy. Maybe one day I’ll even allow someone else be my new protector. But until that day comes, I have to learn how to protect myself from me.
I’m trying. That’s all that counts.