Loopy, Lonely and Lost

Let’s shoot some elephants

Posted on: May 22, 2011

The room is full of them.

  • I failed my degree. Regular readers will probably be aware of this – I know you’re not stupid – but this is something I’ve been avoiding saying, even to myself, for such a long time. (Here’s what happened: I fucked up. My university offered me a chance to do a dissertation so I could pass. I agreed. They never got back to me. I, being the kind of person who thinks about the weather as the apocalypse approaches, part-forgot, part-pretended it wasn’t happening.)
  • That amounts to a waste, if not of life then certainly of a considerable proportion of it. My dad asked me about it in the car this morning, kept asking me why I’d wasted everything, and the truth is I don’t know – or at least, even if I suspect, I don’t want to talk about reasons with him. Anyway, 20-odd grand of debt for a scraped pass in a subject no-one’s heard of wouldn’t really put me in much of a better position than the same amount of debt for nothing at all.
  • Chances are, I probably won’t last long in my job, either. Running off to the toilets to cry every half-hour is bound to get noticed sooner or later.
  • I sort of tried to kill myself today. I don’t want to be all melodramatic. (I hate it. I hate writing it. I feel like an attention-seeker, or a stuck record, or like one of those girls I had to be strong for in my adolescence, because they couldn’t stop talking about their feelings and I didn’t have feelings and just wanted to be a good friend.) It wasn’t really a suicide attempt. I was in the toilets at work – the only place I can go without feeling like everyone is staring at me – and I wrapped the beaded string handle of the blind around my neck, and pulled down hard. I think it would have held my weight, but it was too low down, or I am too tall, and my feet still touched the floor. That’s probably the kind of grim health and safety thing companies have to think about when ordering their blinds. My throat still hurts, although not as badly as last time. I survived then, and will survive now. Like a bad smell.
  • I’ve tried to call the Samaritans three times in the past week, but every time someone answers I feel like my throat’s seizing up and the thought of saying anything at all just seems alien and impossible. I’m worried they’ll think it’s harrassment or time-wasting or something. It probably is.
  • The people I still think of as “my best friends” haven’t spoken to me in well over a year. The only contact I’ve had with the people about whom I used to think at least they care is the occasional, superficial facebook comment, and nobody has taken their place. I’m finding it hard to imagine how I could be more isolated right now.
  • I’ve stopped believing in depression – or, at least, that I am depressed. Life is shit. Some people can cope, and some can’t, and unfortunately I’m just weak. Even if I did believe in it, it wouldn’t do me any use. My family have made it pretty fucking clear that depression is stupidity and weakness, and anti-depressants don’t work. I’d argue, I really would, if I had the energy or any experience that would lead me to believe otherwise.
  • I used to believe I’d rather die than live like this. Now, I feel like I’d rather die than anything at all. I don’t think there’s anything that could make life worthwhile to me now.
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3 Responses to "Let’s shoot some elephants"

Hey there. I came across your blog last night. I don’t know exactly what you’re going through, but I can definitely relate. I had a serious suicide attempt over the weekend, and I’m now left with trying to pick up the pieces.

If you can’t talk to someone over the phone, San Francisco offers a suicide chat session. It’s available Monday through Friday, 3 PM to 11 PM, Pacific Time. You don’t have to be a San Francisco resident to use it. I’m sure other cities, perhaps in the UK, offer he same thing. I used the service because I was terrified to talk to someone, and because I through away my phone battery to ensure I wouldn’t talk to someone. The service was very helpful.

I for one got so caught up in the planning and the carrying out of my plan, that I forgot to deal with my feelings around why I was doing what I was doing. Sometimes hearing things from a different, outside perspective is extremely helpful.

People who say depression is stupidity or weakness obviously have no idea what they’re talking about. First off, major depression is much different than just the normal, everyday depression. People who are down and have the blues are much different than you or I who experience deep-seeded depression day in and day out. There should be another name for what we experience. Calling it depression is not helpful. Second, people are afraid of depression, because they not only do not understand it but also because it can happen to them.

You are not stupid or weak. It’s not a matter of will power. If it was, I’m sure both you and I would have willed it away a long time ago.

In the end, what saved me was my fear of uncertainty. I don’t think I had (and have, for that matter) much will to live. But I am afraid of what comes next. I think that alone is enough to keep going.

Anyway, sorry for the long comment. I know you may not want to hear this, but I do hope things get better. Take care.

I’m not sure what to say, but I couldn’t not comment.
I’m so sorry you’re feeling this way.
It’s not as simple as ‘really’ a suicide attempt or not. Mine wasn’t entirely either. I’m still concerned that you did that, and about you saying you’d rather die than anything at all.
You sound like you’re extremely depressed, and it’s not stupidity and weakness.
Isolation, well, is cruel.
I think you should get help. Tell someone how you are feeling, anyone. Go to A&E if you have to. I know, I’ve been there. I hope you get through this and feel a bit less crappy very soon, and you can e-mail me if you need to talk – I mean that.

Laura,

I started writing this in the hope that I could offer some advice, and because I felt that it couldn’t be ignored. I’m really sorry you’re feeling like this. You are not a weak person, and depression isn’t stupidity. Following on from what other people have said, I really hope that you get the help you deserve, or at least I hope you manage to speak to the Samaritans, or similar. They won’t think that you’re harrassing them and it certainly isn’t time wasting.

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Hello

My name is Laura. I was once told that I have cyclothymia. This blog is mostly where I write about living as a person with extremes and instability of mood, and the history of a life that led to the development of those symptoms.

I complain a lot, I'm very repetitive, unreliable, and I tend to contradict myself.

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