A Dissertation on The Modern Human Condition as of 8/18/2014 #Anthropology #Anthropologie #AllApologies #FuckAnApologyImNotSorryForAnythimg #VersaceVersace
And here I rest where disappointment and regret collide
We all know that feeling, vending machine
I think the saddest people always try their hardest to make people happy
because they know what it’s like to feel absolutely worthless
and they don’t want anyone else to feel like that.
Robin Williams (via skateeofmind)
One of the more helpful and insightful things I’ve seen about depression/suicide in the last couple of days.
Well, this just made me completely fall apart…
all i have ever wanted out of life
In the aftermath of everyone’s reaction to the sad news of Robin Williams’s apparent suicide, it seems that depression has been a hot topic. The topic is one that is complex, resonates deeply with me, and is one that I feel the need to chime in on. There is a serious stigma regarding mental health/depression that causes deeply problematic/counterintuitive perspectives of depressed people, which in turn affects how those same people feel about themselves. Friends have expressed concerns, both before/after this recently publicized tragedy and both with direct/indirect language, about me going the same path, and it does a lot to hear that from people.
Over the course of the past year, I have been diagnosed with depression and more recently clinical depression, and have seen a therapist and psychiatrist on and off for months. I probably should have gone years and years ago, but I had felt weary of so many things that made me apprehensive about going. Does this invalidate how I feel? Does going mean I am living incorrectly? Does seeking help mean that I am wrong? Will going make me a dulled, uncreative, bland person? And now, after going for almost 6 months, my biggest regret is ever having those apprehensions, as I wonder how many things I missed over the years and how many more blows I could’ve taken better had I allowed myself the perspective and occasional relief that it brings. But I was too proud for too long, because I was afraid of being perceived/feeling “weak” or “crazy”. I am certain that some people may always have those perspectives of the depressed/mentally ill, and those people can kindly fuck off at their soonest discretion. I, and everyone suffering from mental illnesses, are many things other than their illness and don’t need to be identified by it.
There are many kinds of depression, and like all things in life, each one can/is experienced by every individual differently, so I will not take claim to crystalizing some universal experience of depression, but I can speak for myself on how it feels. It’s as if all the good things in life (love, joy, hope, happiness, comfortability) are the water that piles into puddles on the shore of the beach, and depression is what makes the sun evaporate the water away so easily and quickly. Even as the water comes back in with the tide, just as soon it is gone. Needless to say, it is frustrating as all hell. It makes me insufferable, and I know it, so I usually don’t talk about it directly/much at all. I feel that often times depressed people realize they are depressed, and are acutely aware of how difficult it makes them.
To those who have a depressed friend/relative/loved one: bare with them. As difficult as it may be to hear them and see them struggling, but it is important to realize that they are struggling with it even harder. If someone is struggling and reaching out to you, realize it is because they trust you and think very highly of you. It is important to not make them feel alienated in return. But in truth, it is difficult, and often can feel a heavy burden. When a friend needs help, realize the sensitivity that is involved with making that decision. Hopefully, in time the stigma goes away so that it does not feel like such a heavy step to take. Hang with them. Be there for them. They will remember it, and return the favor. There will come times in everyone’s lives where they feel unrelenting hopelessness and loss. Those are the times when friends and family mean everything. If you are lucky, those periods will hit only rarely. For those who are prone to that feeling, realize how important your support is to them.
To those who have felt very low for awhile/depressed: don’t think less of yourself for how you feel. In some ways, I feel that having the capacity to feel so low comes from a sensitivity of life that not everyone has. That capacity is a curse at it’s worst, but also, on the other side gives a sense of euphoria that some can never fathom. But, nonetheless, the bottom can seem never ending and constantly sinking. And as much as loved ones care about you, and as much as you seek their perspective, there are some times/issues that are very difficult for even our closest companions to help us with, and hearing “I don’t know what to tell you” can breed a new layer of frustration and resentment that can only make things worse. Seeking professional help does not invalidate how you feel or mean that you are crazy. It also does not marginalize your thoughts. It does help you understand your feelings better. It can help connect some dots. It also can teach a difficult, but important lesson: we don’t always have the answers and sometimes we may only have more questions. Some sessions can be very heartbreaking, and others can be illuminating. Sometimes both. Sometimes you can come out more confused, and there will be days where you don’t want to fight/deal (you don’t always have to every day). But the discussion brings some sort of movement to your struggles. Life is long, and full of tides. The tides are as bewildering as they are inevitable. Seeking help allows us to understand how we internalize it all, and how we can best react to maintain composure and the most enjoyable direction with each event and consequence. Also, if medication is to be considered, be meticulously curious about what they can do and what the side effects/likelihood of side effects are. Medication does not have to be forever, and dosage can always be tinkered with. I was reluctant for a while, but I lost self-consciousness regarding any stigma it would bring and gained realization that I was in control of what I could take, and if I didn’t like what it did to me, I could always change it or go off of it. Throughout, be open and conscientious about however you choose to recover.
I realize this whole thing may be very rant-y and “tl;dr” for some. That is part of the issue. There is a lack in understanding in general that goes on in society for the complexity of life and life’s issues. People are not sensitive, too sensitive, or both, on a myriad of issues, depending on who you’re talking to or what you’re talking about. Blue states/Red states. Everything gets broken down into strict binaries of perspective, as if we are in a rush to categorically define everyone and everything as quickly as possible instead of taking as much time as possible to think and internalize them. In all of this discussion of mental illness and suicide in the wake of Robin Williams, I can only hope good change can come of it. Depressed/suicidal people are not the self-centered/selfish people that they can be bastardized/maligned as. In fact, they may sometimes be some of the friendliest and most helpful people you’ll ever know. They just may be losing/have lost deeply internal, long battles.
Life is very long. Life is very short. Life is.
Lemony Snicket, The Reptile Room
So tell me don’t think like that, it’s really not that bad. I hope this makes you sad
"So if I asked you about art you’d probably give me the skinny on every art book ever written. Michelangelo? You know a lot about him. Life’s work, political aspirations, him and the pope, sexual orientation, the whole works, right? But I bet you can’t tell me what it smells like in the Sistine Chapel. You’ve never actually stood there and looked up at that beautiful ceiling. Seen that. If I asked you about women you’d probably give me a syllabus of your personal favorites. You may have even been laid a few times. But you can’t tell me what it feels like to wake up next to a woman and feel truly happy. You’re a tough kid. I ask you about war, and you’d probably, uh, throw Shakespeare at me, right? “Once more into the breach, dear friends.” But you’ve never been near one. You’ve never held your best friend’s head in your lap and watched him gasp his last breath, looking to you for help. And if I asked you about love you probably quote me a sonnet. But you’ve never looked at a woman and been totally vulnerable. Known someone could level you with her eyes. Feeling like! God put an angel on earth just for you…who could rescue you from the depths of hell. And you wouldn’t know what it’s like to be her angel and to have that love for her to be there forever. Through anything. Through cancer. You wouldn’t know about sleeping sitting’ up in a hospital room for two months holding her hand because the doctors could see in your eyes that the term visiting hours don’t apply to you. You don’t know about real loss, because that only occurs when you love something more than you love yourself. I doubt you’ve ever dared to love anybody that much. I look at you; I don’t see an intelligent, confident man; I see a cocky, scared shitless kid. But you’re a genius, Will. No one denies that. No one could possibly understand the depths of you. But you presume to know everything about me because you saw a painting of mine and you ripped my fuckin’ life apart. You’re an orphan right? Do you think I’d know the first thing about how hard ! your life has been, how you feel, who you are because I read Oliver Twist? Does that encapsulate you? Personally, I don’t give a shit about all that, because you know what? I can’t learn anything from you I can’t read in some fuckin’ book. Unless you wanna talk about you, who you are. And I’m fascinated. I’m in. But you don’t wanna do that, do you, sport? You’re terrified of what you might say. Your move, chief.”
R.I.P. Robin Williams (July 21, 1951 - August 11, 2014)
this monologue fucked me up.