I have not been posting as often as I would like. There are several reasons for this. It’s around that time again, when fall classes start. This has been keeping me busy. I also seem to have caught a cold, and I’ve been feeling unusually fatigued (whether from being sick or being depressed or some combination thereof, I do not know). This has left me wanting to lie around doing as little as possible until I stop feeling like crap (I really don’t want to have to either miss classes or feel like a jerk for possibly spreading my cold, so I hope this happens before Monday). I had a falling out with my roommate… We used to be friends. Now she is moving out and I find that this actually makes me glad. She said some things that hurt me more than a punch to the face ever could. I actually had a panic attack because of the things she said. Even though she apologized later, I can’t stop being afraid that she will hurt me again. I am even afraid of being hurt in similar ways by other people, and now I’m always trying to think of ways to protect myself. This is crap. I feel broken.
I am afraid this will make my depression worse and make it difficult to complete even the few classes I am taking. It might not. It might just be a short term upset. But I have no idea how to tell which way things will go ahead of time. I hate not being able to predict how much I will be able to handle, and I keep having to go with low estimates, so that I do not overestimate and then crash and burn later. That’s what happened last semester. It was too much, and when I started to get depressed, everything just fell apart. I failed all of my classes. I followed up a semester of straight A’s with a semester of straight F’s. I finally decided it was time to see what help I could get from the disability office. They turned out to be pretty awesome, actually, but I still feel like, every time I have to talk to a teacher about disability accommodations, they are going to think I am just trying to take advantage of the system. Because I look fine. Because I don’t have any trouble with classes 80% of the time. Because I still can’t quite accept the idea that I actually need the help.
Being depressed sucks. It sucks in ways I never would have predicted. When I got so upset at what my roommate said that I went off to my room to have a panic attack, she thought I was going to kill myself. I wasn’t, by the way. It didn’t even cross my mind. Now it feels like, if other people know I am depressed, I won’t ever be able to be genuinely upset at things that are worth getting upset about without someone else thinking I am going to be suicidal. This makes me not want to tell people that I am depressed, because now I’ve seen a whole new way people could use that knowledge to hurt me. Because if people know I am depressed, next time I get upset and storm out, will I find myself being held in a hospital against my will? This is so ridiculous. I shouldn’t even have to think about this. When I am upset and angry with someone because they said something nasty, I should not have to be the one comforting them. Period. Not even if I have committed the crime of getting upset while being depressed. And yet, if I don’t comfort them, I risk winding up in a hospital. Am I the only one who sees the potential for manipulation, here?
One of my favorite bloggers has been blogging about his own experience with depression. His blog is about subjects completely unrelated to depression, but when he is talking about what is going on in his life because it is interfering with his blogging, he won’t hesitate to say words like ‘depression’ or ‘mental illness’ or even ‘suicide attempt’. It really means a lot to me when people do stuff like that, talking openly about mental illness and refusing to be properly ashamed about it. There’s a lot of stigma surrounding mental illness. People speaking up about mental illness, refusing to be quiet, this fights against the stigma. I want to be like that. I want to be like that on my blog, and I want to be like that in the meatsphere. Which, of course, just adds to the conflicting feelings I have when, on the other side of the coin, I am trying to protect myself. I don’t want to tell my teachers I am depressed. They have a certain amount of power over me, and it could potentially harm my chances in a class if they saw my depression as just an excuse to be lazy. All they need to know is that I have a disability and that I have been approved for certain specific accommodations. I want to be open about what and why, but protecting myself is the more vital need in this circumstance. I already had a bad experience with a teacher this summer when all she even knew was that I had a disability (even though I looked fine), much less which specific disability. I don’t want to have to protect myself like this against friends, too.
And here I thought I would have to add some gimmicky thing to a short note about why I haven’t been writing blog posts in order to come up with a full post.