I’ve been fighting a serious bout of depression for the last few weeks. It’s hit me hard and is persisting much longer than normal. I've been plagued by the failure of everything lately. Seriously, even things that aren't in my control, but did well in the past have suddenly suffered catastrophic failure as soon as I become involved. Every time I think I can start to deal, though, “friends” on social media post some pretty hateful things that throw me back under the tires of self-loathing.
First there was the American rant- all Americans are horrible people that think they rule the world. This person has met me, in person, several times and knows that I do not believe that America rules the world nor deserves to. It was a bit of an eye opener, though, to see that she really thinks so little of me.
Next was a “friend” who has been bugging me a bit lately with all her Republican HOORAH FOR US posts and religious zealotry. I posted that the medical system is so broken that if I had to go to the hospital, with my insurance, it’s a death sentence because we cannot afford to use our insurance. I took my son to the doctor for a rash, which they misdiagnosed, and they charged me $700 after the insurance paid their part! $700 for a misdiagnosis while insured is crazy! The second part of my post was discussing the fact that schooling is so expensive. My daughter went to trade school and is now in debt for years for a certificate that is close to being useless. I went to finish my associate’s degree at an online school who lied to me about the cost, after 6 weeks (not even a full term) the bills started showing, and I quit before it got any higher. It took me months to pay it off, with nothing to show for it. Anyway, this “friend” replied, in no uncertain terms, that I really didn’t matter because she has Medicaid which pays for everything. She also received federal grants to go to school, for free- probably why she’s dropped out so often. I was explaining why socialism isn’t the evil she thinks it to be, she was arguing that it is the worst possible thing people can do. If you don’t get the irony, leave a comment and I’ll explain.
Then, yesterday I was starting to feel like maybe it was ebbing when yet another “friend” posted an article. I refused to read the article because the title was something along the lines of, “Your anxiety doesn’t mean you can be an asshole.” If that wasn’t enough to convince me not to read it, one of the comments underneath (among a list of “Yes. This!” and “Totally agree!”) said, beautifully, that maybe telling someone battling with anxiety that they don’t deserve friends is a bit too harsh. If anyone actually thinks I’m being an asshole while I try to talk myself off the edge because no one else even notices, then I’m sorry, I’m just trying to survive. So, you know, go fuck yourself darling.
The latest is the death of an icon, David Bowie. It is sad that he’s left the world, but that’s not really what’s so damned depressing. The worst part of it is all the people in my life who are so upset about it, their world is shattered, they can’t even! Yet when I ask for help because the dark place is calling, when I post that I’m seriously considering that cold dark place, no one gives a shit. Not one. People who know me, personally, care more about David Bowie than they do about someone they used to call friend. That’s the most tragic. But at least I know where I stand.
Last night, I was trying, again, to explain what it feels like to Steve. I tried to explain the all-consuming loneliness that defines my depression. I told him that I’m always lonely, no matter what. He said, “I hope I help.”
“Even you cannot stop it,” I told him. “You can’t fight the loneliness that lives inside my head.” Because that’s where it starts and stops. It’s like there’s a black hole in my brain that sucks up all the good so it never reaches me. There’s no fighting that.
While we were having this discussion, the dog, Zack, looked on with an air of derision. He was happy being allowed to sleep in warm peacefulness under a fleece Dr. Who blanket in the air stream of the heater. My battle with loneliness was a minor disturbance on his psyche. He does not understand the concept.
The dog can be so judgmental sometimes.