A Start
Posted by RAW
14th Jul 2013

Well this is my second attempt of a blog post. Wrote a pretty long one a few hours ago, candid, sincere, heart on sleeve. Clicked "add blog". Got signed out and lost. I wasn't going to bother making another attempt but I thought oh to hell with it, I've got nothing else to do. I get disheartened far too easily, and it's a habit I need to break.

So I'm more or less going to rewrite what I tried to post earlier. This is a big thing for me, I've never been any good at talking about my feelings and I'm easily discouraged from doing so because of the social stigmas around depression and the attitudes of some people towards it. I've got to remember that it's only some people. But then again, I'm one of those people in respect to myself at least. For as long as I can remember I've been trying to "get over myself", "pull myself together" etc because things could be a lot worse and we should be grateful that they're not. Although I know there's no shame in being depressed, I can't shake that feeling. Other people are worth support, but I'm not. Entirely hypocritical, I know. I'd never expect anyone else to "pull themselves together" but I tell myself to do that every single day and even though I know I'm being hard on myself, I know I'm being unreasonable, irrational and illogical - knowing all that just becomes another stick to beat myself with.

I've always had low self-esteem, which I've always identified as realistic self-esteem. I've always felt dumb, ugly, boring, awkward and the rest of it, like an outcast and I know that that's not a normal way to feel about yourself but I've felt like this for as long as I can remember and I've never, ever been able to pinpoint what caused it. I didn't have people telling me these things for years and years, I had no childhood traumas or anything like that. It's just always been there at the back of my mind. I'm not a particularly ambitious person, certainly not an optimist. I don't remember having any hopes or dreams as such, yet I still have an overwhelming feeling of disappointment and failure. How can you fail if you don't try, a pessimist is never disappointed. Not exactly ringing true for me right now. Life has its ups and downs, it's only natural. I've had long periods of.. well.. having nothing to feel depressed about yet still feeling depressed and it makes me feel like a terrible person because I don't necessarily show any appreciation for my situation.

Depression is a very difficult thing to talk about and the worst part of it for me is the social stigma. Maths comes quite naturally to me but not so much to others. Maintaining a bit of passion, a zest for life and hope comes naturally to others but not so much to me. I've found comparing to others to be one of the most destructive things I can do, and I don't particularly trust my own self-perception. I don't particularly trust anyone's self-perception, I'm sure Jeremy Hunt and Janet Street Porter think they're lovely people. People will see in me what I don't see in myself and I will see in others what they don't see in themselves. Something coming naturally to others doesn't undermine my acheivement. There have been days when I can barely face leaving my bed, but I do. I have to. Anyone suffering from depression and putting on the brave face, trying to live a "normal" and productive life - they deserve applauding, it takes so much courage.

Last week, for the first time ever I didn't go into work one day because I felt too depressed to do so. Usually if I need to I'm able to grin and bear it, act fine when I'm not, get onto auto-pilot and go home. I don't always need to, some days I'm.. I wouldn't say fine, just kind of neutral. Last week I felt like I didn't even have the energy for that and despite what I've just said about comparison, I did compare. I do. I'm not a lazy person by any means, I don't think so at least. I just seem to be at odds with myself all the time. Sometimes I can't bear to do anything, I want to lay and stare at the walls, I can't even be bothered to listen to music, which I've always thought I was passionate about. Other times, I'll do absolutely anything to pass the time and distract myself. Anything is better than nothing. I felt the same about meds when I finally got around to asking about them. First time I saw a doctor was about 4 years ago, and he put me off seeing another until last year. You could tell he couldn't be bothered, he wasn't willing to listen. I was just a statistic to him, probably playing this pathetic little game. He was ready to throw any old prescription at me just to get me out of his sight. I wasn't ready for that. I've always been a bit worried about anti-depressants. It's not really in the interests of pharmaceutical companies for people to recover, is it? I was worried about being dependent, but now I'm past caring. I used to worry about taking prescribed mind-altering substances, which is ridiculous as I've been fairly reckless with other types in the past. I found them hard to trust. If Prozac is good enough, why not ecstasy?

Well, I've just switched to Sertraline. Since last year I've had Prozac and Citalopram and nothing's really helped. What convinced me to finally seek help was knowing that irrespective of how often and how much I've changed my situation, I always end up feeling like this and with it comes the guilt an empathy for others who are worse off than me, yet happier. I've been trying to "fake it till you make it" for years now, and I've had enough. This is a big thing for me. I don't know just what I'm hoping to get out of it, but whatever, even if I'm just talking out loud to a wall, it's better than bottling.

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