October 11, 2016

Nothing About My Depression Is ‘Haunting’ Or ‘Beautiful,’ Everything About It Is Awful

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Xopher Wallace
Xopher Wallace

I’m not quite sure when the meeting was to decide that depression was the première mental illness to glamorize by mentally healthy people, but I was certainly not invited.

When I was a sophomore in college, I was officially diagnosed with depression. Although, after one of my school’s counselors (who honestly might’ve actually been a psych student who was, like, only four years older than me—I think he got assigned to me by accident) read me the symptoms, I suspected that I had been depressed since the early years of high school.

Since then, depression is now a very reluctantly accepted part of my life. It’s engrained into my personality and my actions. It influences my thoughts, feelings, and decisions.

Which is why online content and people who glorify depression as ~*~moodiness~*~ or mysteriousness or enviable darkness or whatever absolutely astound me.

Because I have been to the depths of hell before with my good buddies, Depression and Anxiety, and, frankly, I did naht see any of those people down there helping me.

Depression isn’t beautiful. It’s ugly. It’s hideous to the point that when you’re taken over by it, people turn away. And nobody ignores beauty.

“Haunting” oversimplifies the complete travesty that depression wreaks in almost every aspect of your life. Depression isn’t “difficult to ignore,” holy shit, no: depression makes it difficult to think about anything else. Depression becomes you.

Depression is something you want to hide—you stuff it down your throat as you frantically try to find a distraction, until that point when everything bubbles up and you barely want to exist anymore.

Depression is losing will because you can’t conjure up a good enough reason to do anything.

Depression is failing to find a reason to want to be conscious and to get out of bed.

Depression is not washing your hair for days. It’s not brushing your teeth. It’s wearing unclean clothes.

Depression is eating. It’s eating so many Strawberry Pop-Tarts in one sitting, you feel heavy and slow. It’s not eating for days, and feeling empty and hollow. It’s both, it’s over and over again, it never stops.

Depression is sleep. Too much, and way too little. You’re always tired—not from the lack of sleep—you’re a weird, unknown type of exhaustion that sneaks into your life and somehow, without you noticing, becomes part of who you are.

Depression is constantly apologizing to people you love for who you are.

What part of this is beautiful? What part of this is mysterious and brooding and exciting to be around?

If you want to use simplified language to talk about depression—language that barely scratches the surface—it’s not beautiful or haunting. It’s awful. TC mark

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