Wednesday, September 03, 2014

More About That

It terrifies m'better half that I'd ever felt or that I understood something akin to this; I've tried to explain it, but, whoops, it just terrifies her deeper. It's good to know I'm not the only 'someone' trying to explain, not explain away, and understand their own tendencies.

I think, through that, I pretty much get why most people don't understand, don't want to understand, and don't want to learn about the topic.

What I've told you in the past is me-talking-about-me, which is the best I can do to relate suicide to friends and family. It's never easy for them to take. Thank you for posting about you. It's meaningful to me. It might terrify mine, but it's a nice deep meaning to me, and I'm CERTAIN it would be to others, unless I'm unequally, unequivocally unique. You're touching a subject that's very private (extremely personal) for a lot, and I mean 'a LOT' of very silent people.
------Comment from AE

I've been thinking about this comment a lot since I first read it because it's happened to me, will continue to happen to me, and is me all at the same time. What I mean is that I don't like talking about this stuff either. I don't know if it terrifies me anymore, but it did.

Talking about it terrified me because of the dismissal so many people have for this topic. Hearing them dismiss a serious and sincere matter by ignoring it or, even worse, saying you’re just looking for attention hurts, and that hurt is deep. Deeper than any hurt that I've ever known because it's a rejection of the only non-physical feeling that I'm feeling. When I say I want to return this "gift" that no one is supposed to want to return it should be taken seriously, shouldn't it? Then comes the doubt, maybe I am just looking for attention or maybe I will just get over it even though the only attention I want are for the things I do that I think are good and what if something is extra wrong with me because I have had very few moments of gotten over it?

And then what if they do listen to me? How often do severely depressed people hear that this will just pass? Or they're told it must be their situation and they just need to get out of it and find something better? They are hearing what's said, but their experiences are based on the typical human melancholy that does pass in time or disappears when they change jobs or leave an abusive relationship or whatever it is that was bringing them down. This is why when someone like Mr. Williams takes his life the most often thing said is that he had so much to live for because they assume that his feelings would have passed and his stuff, his career, his family would have help the feelings to move on more quickly. Except this kind of depression doesn't work like that.

Also there's the fear of being taken seriously, so seriously that I end up being taken to a facility of some kind. The cost of that, even just for the three days many people stay to get over the hump and onto medication, is astronomical. And I promise that if I end up at a place like that I'm going to give up for a while. Not like kill myself give up, but just not caring anymore give up. I will not participate in group bullshit unless forced and even then I won't speak except, maybe, to outline the logical reasons my brain keeps giving me to make it okay to kill myself. Not really to cause problems, but to just let it all out.

Even writing what I'm writing now, and have been writing recently, is terrifying for me. I have an ache in my stomach that wasn't there before because I'm writing about something that I'm not comfortable with and have trouble understanding completely about myself and I work hard to understand why I do the things I do.

I also get why a spouse would be terrified at the idea of suicide. The knowledge that your best friend, the person you've chosen to stay with for the rest of your life has, in the post, though about ending his or her life, what would that mean for your life? Places never visited, people never met, children never birthed. It's a large quantum change on one life without the spouse they choose. And what if the spouse considers, or worse attempts, while married? What then? And are these things passed on to the children? What if the children feel this way at some point? How do you cope? How do you help? How do you stop it? How do you keep it from happening? Or happening again?

I don't know.

One thing that made me feel some relief was finding out, recently, that my mother, throughout my lifetime at least, had many nights where she'd lie awake in bed and think it would be okay for her to not wake up. Her children would be fine because their father is a good man. I also learned that one of my great-grandmothers once just went to bed and didn't get out again. The kids had to do everything around the house; lucky there were seven of them.

I can't say that I felt better learning this, but I felt relieved. I felt relieved because this isn't something that spontaneously generated during this generation of my family. It's been around and member have been fighting it or giving into it for at least three generations. I just get to experience it differently because I live now, because I don't have children, because it started a long time ago and hasn't ever really backed off. I don't like the idea that these women had similar thoughts to mine, but I like knowing that I'm not just some extra-freaky freak.

One of the hardest parts about trying to talk about/explain this is how intensely personal it is. What I mean is that everyone reacts to this level of depression, this amount of suicidal thought, in different ways.

I force myself to roll out of bed each morning after the alarm goes off and take a shower. I force myself to get dressed and make a lunch and then get on to work. I force myself to stay at work all day long. I force myself to pretend to actually be okay. (That one's become a lot harder since my meds were changed, though. I know I'm not hiding it like I used to because I can't.) Yes some days it is easier than others, but it's still a lot of work and mental pressure I put on myself. I don't want to get out of bed or shower or go to work, but I do. I do because if I don't I'd be better off in some facility somewhere where I don't have to try. Where it just doesn't matter.

I know that other people get up each morning for other reasons. Some have children. Others have a significant other. Some just have a hobby or a project that they want to see through to the end. I'm sure there are even more reasons. There's probably at least one different reason for every thousand people whose brain tells them that they'd rather not be around. Some of those reasons are going to be more common than others.

Writing about all this doesn't make me feel better. It also doesn't make me feel worse. However, I do feel a little guilty because I don't care if any of this helps someone else. I want it to help me and it hasn't, yet.


Jazz said...

This is why when someone like Mr. Williams takes his life the most often thing said is that he had so much to live for

Personally, I think the only person who knows whether they have "so much to live for" is the person who is contemplating suicide. No one else can know, no one else is in their head or in their life. No one else is in any position to judge.

I've had those, "so what if I don't wake up" thoughts. I wonder what it would change, and most of the time it seems like nothing much. I never made serious plans, but the thought that one day I might sorta freaks me out...

ticknart said...

I agree whole heartedly with you, Jazz, but a person who is depressed because he's in debt sees all the money as a solution to depression; a person who is lonely sees a wife and kids and friends. They only know how to look through their own lenses. After they get through what solves their problem they see everything else he had and don't want to understand why he let it all go.

Some people, like you, can look outside their view and see and understand that there's more to it than the average situational depression that everyone has from time to time.

It's like one group only reads/hears the words to the poem or song Richard Cory and the other thinks about what the words actually mean.