“They always say time changes things, but you actually have to change them yourself.”
― Andy Warhol
I have been writing about mental illnesses for quite a while. Maybe because I know what it’s like to be depressed. One of my former best friends used to cut himself. Someone I loved tried to kill himself. Someone I was close to felt like she had to starve herself. And me? I had one of those spells when I had to force myself to get up every single morning for several months because I felt that life was too hard.
But here’s the thing: I got up even when I didn’t want to because there are some things worth fighting for.
It’s time for tough love.
A friend sent me a photo he found online, and figured I could use this as a topic to write about. Here it is:
For everyone suffering from a mental illness, please PLEASE wake up.
Depression does not make you special, and you can’t revel in it because DEPRESSION. IS. AN. ILLNESS.
Yes, it is very difficult to understand and the people who care about you will try their best to be there for you when you need them, but you also have to understand that they can’t be there for you all the time, and it is difficult, yes, it’s difficult living with depression, but you have your choices.
Take your medicines. Talk to your therapist. Find a therapist that you’re comfortable with.
Celebrate little victories, but don’t ever, for the life of you, use your depression to be treated special. Don’t pout when you’re not given what you want and use your depression as a means to control the people around you. Don’t use “I’m depressed” to get people to move mountains for you.
Use the illness to make you stronger, because you want to be more than just “that depressed kid” to the people around you. Don’t ever let your depression define you because no, being depressed does not make you special, it just means your sick and you’re not doing everything you can to get better. You have to want to get better.
It’s difficult, I know. Waking up to a battle to get through every single day is tough, and most days you don’t have the energy to fight, but you have your choices, and you have to put up a fight to get better. So fight.
Anxiety is not cute, it cuts off your wings
We all have things that scare us. For some, it is even more difficult, especially when it interferes with life in general. Some anxiety disorders get so bad that people stop living normal lives, and no, “facing your fears” is not as easy as it sounds. I understand that, I really do, but anxiety is not like Jayma Mays in “Glee.”
If you watched at least one season of that godforsaken series (I did, Season 1 was cute) you’re going to see how at first her character is cute, then later on annoying, and later on pitiful (I am still talking about the one season I saw here). Her character’s a lot exaggerated, because you know, it’s a television show, but back then, here’s one thing you realize: she never was able to fully enjoy her life because she’s been living with too much fear.
I’m not going to tell you to get over it, because I know it’s not something to just “get over,” however you too, have to face things that scare you, especially if they’re stopping you from living a normal life. Get out, go on, and live.
Self harm scars are not beautiful, they are restricting.
If you truly believe that the scars are beautiful, then you wouldn’t be hiding them under sleeves and baggy clothes, you would be wearing them proudly on your skin. That being said, as long as the blade still controls you, you cannot say that your self-harm scars are beautiful. They can only be that once you’ve healed inside and stopped cutting yourself. They’re only beautiful when you stopped drawing them on your skin, because then, they represent your strength for getting past depression.
Until you stop feeling sad, or suicidal, or numb, you cannot call self harm scars — whether they’re done by blade or point or needle — beautiful. Let go of that blade, and be strong.
Suicide is not poetic, it’s sad
You know why people mourned Robin Williams? It’s because he brought so much joy and laughter to the world, that they couldn’t believe he’d take his own life, despite being diagnosed with depression. People mourned him because he’s touched so many lives with his art.
But you know what they didn’t say about Robin Williams? They didn’t say that his death was poetic. They didn’t admire him for killing himself, they felt sorry for him, but more than that, they felt sorry for his family for what they’re going through. And you know what, despite the fact that he played so many iconic roles, he’s going to be forever labeled as someone who killed himself, and people will always remember him with pity in their voices.
Robin Williams? Oh, he was amazing, too bad he killed himself. The same went for Kurt Cobain. “Kurt Cobain was the voice of his generation, it’s so sad he killed himself, he was so young.”
Suicide is not poetic. It will not gain you love and care that you crave or want or need. So don’t use it to get attention (believe me, there is a difference between truly suicidal people and those who are doing it for attention) and don’t use it to get love.
Suicide actually affects the people around you more than it affects you, and no matter how much you are loved, remember that there is no such thing as purely selfless love in humans. At some point people will let you go if you’ve become too toxic, because suicide is not poetic, it’s poisonous. It either kills you, or it will slowly kill the people around you, so find a reason to live or you will lose the people who love you. it’s your choice. Choose life.
(To be continued…)