I hope that with this series of posts you can understand how a depressed state of mind works, and how you can start seeing the light at the end of the dark tunnel.
“Many people are scared of death, but death is not enough for those who choose suicide.” – Gabi Brandao
This week I was going to write about something completely different (about stress and exercise, and how we should work out when under chronic stress), but I decided to change the subject of my post after hearing about the death of Anthony Bourdain.
In fact, as someone who has survived my own suicidal mind and attempt, I decided to write a series of 4 posts on this subject in hopes to raise awareness and help people who are under that dark state of mind, as well as their families.
It’s difficult for me to be vulnerable like this, but I feel like I have to. It’s even more difficult for me to hear, again and again, that so many people from all over the world, have reached a point of depression that lead them to take their own lives.
This series of posts maybe should have been written during the month of May (Mental Health Month), but now that I’m thinking about it, it’s better this way. Why? Because a lot of people who need to hear this message were probably staying away from posts like this. You’ll understand why by the end of this post, or maybe after the end of this series when you understand the state of mind of people with depression completely.
There’s NEVER going to be just “another suicide”.
As you can tell, a depressed state of mind doesn’t have to do with the amount of success, money, fame, or even love that someone may have in their lives. Someone may be loved by many (like I’ve always known that I am), and have everything yet, they may still find themselves worth-killing.
Depression does NOT have to do with outside sources: family, friends, material things, career, etc. This is why I tell the families of suicide victims to please not feel guilty because even if you told and showed them that you loved them every day, it still wouldn’t have helped them. It’s not your fault and it’s never going to be.
We “reach bottom” when we lose total respect for ourselves, enough that we can’t even stand listening to the sound of our voices, neither the sound of our voices in our minds, when we think, in total despair.
I remember, the day I jumped off a building, I just wanted to make my mind SHUT UP. I hated myself so much, I couldn’t take it anymore. The same happened during one of my ex-husband’s alcoholic episodes when he put out one of his cigarettes on top of my hand, as he held shut the sliding door against my arm so that I wouldn’t move, That night, after he was done burning me, I looked at my hand and saw my bone. And here is how I can show you how a mind of a clinically depressed person works: instead of caring for myself, going to the hospital, and calling the cops on him, you know what I did? I took a lighter and finished burning my hand until I passed out on the floor.
It’s very hard to put it into words to explain how my brain thought or how I felt, but when I woke up, I liked that feeling. I liked knowing and feeling that I was suffering and in pain. Deep down I had some sort of satisfaction. And it’s not like I was doing it all to tell other people – because not even the people closest to me, my own family, knew that I was in such a depressed state, nor that I was in an abusive relationship.
In fact, being in an abusive relationship was quietly fueling my dark spirit.
I was very passive with my ex-husband, and would let him do whatever he wanted with me: hit me, push me, burn me, kick me, bang my head against walls (I had 12 concussions during my 7 years of marriage), you name it. And by not reacting, I was being aggressive towards myself. I really didn’t care.
Of course I didn’t know any of that while I was going through it all. I wasn’t aware or conscious, or even thought I should be. I was just going with the flow while the flow took me to very dark places: places that I shouldn’t be going.
Now that I am mentally healthy, I can see myself from the outside and have a much better understanding of what went on and of who that person was – because that girl wasn’t me. The weird part of it is that I can only see it now! That’s why I can empathize so much with people who are going through depression and am so willing to help however I can.
This is why when I hear that someone committed suicide, I suffer, even when they were people I didn’t even get to meet or know personally. I know the amount of pain they were under and that makes me lose sleep, in sadness for their deep self-despair… Self-despair hurts more than anything else I have ever felt in life.
On my next post, I will explain to you how I think we get to such a state of depression, lack of self-respect, and self-despair. After that, I will be writing about what we can do to help ourselves, while being in that dark state of mind, even when we don’t want to. It is hard, but it is possible. It’s hard but it is necessary for you to come out of it alive. I will also write about what family members and loved ones can do to help.
I remember when I started seeing therapists. I would tell them about my ex-husband being abusive, and they would respond to me by saying: “you need to leave your husband now, otherwise you’ll leave him when you are dead.” And I would think to myself, as I hated the therapist (and everyone else who ever tried to help me – including the people who love me): “You say that because you have no idea what I can do to myself.”
All that I am writing on this subject has not been studied nor is the result of a psychological study case. All of it is based on my own experience, pain, and recover.
As I said before, all I want with this post series is to be able to help someone who is going through what I have experienced, somehow.
For now, I just want to tell you 4 things (as tears roll down my cheek).
If you are reading this know that:
- You are worth your life,
- You are loved,
- And you, yes YOU, ARE ENOUGH,
- You WILL get through it.
Much love being sent out to everyone who is living in a depressed state, and also to those who have lost their loved ones to mental illness.
And to Anthony Bourdain, I hope that you are eating bowls and bowls of spicy noodles from wherever you are!
Disease Prevention Advocate, Blogger, Author, Speaker, Certified Holistic Health and Wellness Coach by the Institute of Integrative Nutrition, Board Certified by the American Association of Drugless Practitioners, and Licensed Medical Massage Practitioner by the Virginia Board of Nursing