Loving Someone with Depression: What It’s Like For the One You Love

Falling in love is great. Especially if it’s with someone great! First you go through the honeymoon phase where everything is just so awesome and nothing stands in your way. Unfortunately, a couple doesn’t always stay in that fun little phase. As time goes on, you really start to learn more about the person you are in a relationship with. You learn what makes them tick. What makes them happy. What makes them sad. What makes them mad. What they love. What they hate. You learn their routine. You learn their mannerisms. You can tell when something is wrong. When they’re not quite themselves.

Everyone has their bad/sad days. You can’t deny it. We’ve all been there. Even “normal” people get them… Some more than others. But nonetheless, this is something we all experience.

Loving Someone with Depression

When you have depression and/or anxiety (side note here: they are not the same thing! They share similarities, but are entirely different things. You can have one or the other or both. Just because you suffer from depression, doesn’t mean you suffer from anxiety and visa versa.), you never really know when you’re bad days are going to hit. Everyone says “it’s a choice to be happy” and yes, for the most part it is. But sometimes it’s not. Sometimes you just fall into a deep, dark hole and there is no ladder to help you climb out. For me personally, I can be so happy all day and with the flip of a switch be so sad and start sobbing. This doesn’t happen often, but it does happen. It’s hard to explain, it really is.

In the 5th grade, I was diagnosed with depression. #embarrassing. I had a lot of things going on in my life at the time. My mom was in a lot of trouble for doing drugs. My dad and other mom just had a baby, so I was no longer an only child. And let me tell you something: being an only child for 11 years and then having another baby come in the picture is hard! I wasn’t the priority anymore – literally felt like I didn’t even matter and that the world would have been a better place without me. I couldn’t understand how my parents could love me so much one day and then not the next. The next 12 years of my life were difficult. Don’t get me wrong. I had lots and lots of good times, days, months in between there. I had some great experiences. Met some awesome people. But there was a lot that went on. A lot of times when I just felt like I could leave and no one would miss me. A lot of lonely nights. Hate riddled my bones.

Once I hit 22, I could finally see the light. Things were starting to fall into place. I landed a full-time job with benefits. I bought a house on my own – something that I had worked very hard for. I bought a new car. I met an amazing guy that I now love with all of my heart.

{Another side note: I just want to say realllll quick that I am in NO way what-so-ever trying to make excuses, I am just trying to shed some light and say how I feel. I am not speaking for everyone because we are all different, but if you can relate and I can help you, then my job here is done.}

I recently had a bad few days, so I decided to write about it. Writing is so therapeutic! I am in a “new” relationship – been almost 10 months now, so we are definitely passed the honeymoon phase. We get along great, for the most part. We laugh a lot. A LOT. We fight. We love. We cry…

So let me just back up a little here – and I’m sorry that I’m rambling. I promise I’ll get to the point. I feel like I am at a pretty good point in my life. I don’t have bad/sad days nearly as often as I used to. I’ve learned to deal with it, how to hide it and just pretend that I’m fine. I know that not everyone knows how to handle it, so I try to save my weak moments for myself when I can cry in the shower or after everyone’s gone to bed.  Let me give you a scenario… On Monday, I was having a normal day. Get off work, pick up my child (who did not stop whining from the second I picked him up until the second he fell asleep),  have to go to the store for food – boo!, come home from the store and I was so damn annoyed. I was on edge. I was irritated. Everything was pissing me right the hell off! My sweet boy was driving my absolutely insane. I finally ended up kicking his butt and putting him in his room – mother of the year over here! I cooked breakfast for dinner. Still was annoyed, but trying to come out of it. By the time I went to bed, I was alright. Tuesday I was just so anxious. Something was bugging me, but I couldn’t pin point it. And to be honest, I didn’t want to figure out what it was. It takes to much time to figure it out. So I settled with “I don’t know what’s wrong.” It’s just easier that way. Even if you do know why, it’s hard to put it in words. It’s hard to say it in a way that someone on the outside might understand. I expressed how I felt like crying. When I was asked why, “I don’t know” was all I could say. Sometimes you just REALLY don’t know what’s wrong. You’re just off. Wednesday was another normal day, but by the middle of the day, I started to get a headache and started to feel.. not good. By the time I went to bed, my head was pounding and I just felt worse. Sometimes it’s too much too deal with. Sometimes it’s hard to be strong all the time and put up a front. So I rolled over and started to cry. I tried real hard to be quiet, but your nose starts to run, so your sniffing a lot and your body kinda shakes as you let it out and breathe. So then it was apparent that I was crying. I was asked why I was crying several times and I didn’t answer. I said “nothing.” “What’s wrong?” a few more times. Finally I said “I don’t feel good.” That answer wasn’t good enough and I was left to sleep alone. So what do I do? Cry even harder because my truthful answer wasn’t enough. I felt worthless. Unlovable. Loser status. By saying “I don’t feel good” doesn’t always mean my belly hurts or my head. It can mean that I literally don’t feel good. I mentally do not feel good. My heart hearts. I am sad. I am mad. I don’t know why. I just don’t. I tried to sleep with my sweet sweet baby, but his bed is just too small for the two of us and I didn’t want to wake him because I was tossing and turning, flopping him all over his twin size bed. Besides, he already gets me more than he should. Poor kid. If I cry in front of him, he will immediately start to cry and hold me and tell me everything is okay and hug me tight. He’s been that way for as long as I can remember. I guess that’s what I was searching for, but it wasn’t fair of me to try and put a four-year-old in that position. I didn’t want to be alone. I just wanted someone to hug me tight. You don’t have to tell me that it’s going to be okay because I know “this too shall pass.” I’ll get through it. I always do.

I can totally understand that “I don’t know” is an extremely annoying answer. I get it. I don’t like to be told that. I genuinely what to know what is wrong when I ask someone. I need to take my own advice sometimes when I say that “I don’t know” is sometimes a good enough answer. In a situation where the person (me, in this case) is so sad for whatever unknown reason, we don’t want to be alone, even if it seems like we do. Please don’t leave us alone. For some people, that just proves that all people do when times get tough is leave. It’s nice to know that someone truly cares and can accept your “I don’t know” and love you through it instead of being frustrated.

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Almost three years ago, I walked away from everything I had ever known. I needed a blank slate. I needed to start over. I wanted to be happy. My son did not deserve to have an unhappy family. It was hands down THE hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life. I didn’t have a job. I didn’t know how I was going to do it on my own. I just knew I couldn’t live like that anymore. It wasn’t a healthy lifestyle for any of us. A while after I had left, I received this picture with the words “I wish I would have realized this sooner. I wish I would have believed you when you said I don’t know. I wish I would have understood then what I do now.” I think I replied with “me too.” By that time, it was too late. My wounds had finally started to heal. I had to find this picture again and share it because there is so much truth to it. Here’s a few more that I’ve found that are good..

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Please know that it takes courage to write these kind of things and I have been fighting with myself on whether or not I should really post this. A million thoughts rush through my mind. It isn’t my intention at all to hurt anyone’s feelings or to make anyone mad. I am not looking for sympathy in any shape or form. I am just writing this so you can possibly get a glimpse inside of what goes on in my mind.

Other good reads on this subject:
13 Things To Remember When You Love A Person Who Has Depression
20 Things to Remember If You Love A Person With Depression
When Someone You Love Has Depression

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Emotions – or Lack Of

It’s been a while since I’ve posted and I tell myself every day that I need to blog and do better, blah, blah, blah. I really do. It’s therapeutic for me to write. Some things have been weighing heavy on my heart lately. I’m in a bit of a funk, I guess you could say. Since I’ve written my suicide story, I’ve had so many people tell me how courageous and brave it was of me to post that. I am truly thankful that I have been getting so much support from it because you have no idea how scared I was to hit Publish.

But I need to be honest here. In that post, I told you that I have depression. I hate saying that. Not because it’s embarrassing, because I know I am not alone, but just because I am so stubborn. I hate to think that anything is “wrong” with me. I know it’s fairly common, but like I said, I am just stubborn. When I was first “diagnosed”, I was put on pills. That lasted for about a week-and-a-half because I was too stubborn to take them. “I don’t need some stupid pills to make me feel better.” I couldn’t tell a difference, but my mom said she could. But what did she know? She’s not inside of my head. Let’s face it. When you have depression, it’s hard to explain how you are feeling. Especially to someone that doesn’t know what it’s like to have depression. It’s like you’re on a roller coaster constantly. Now, people say “why can’t you just wake up in the morning with a good attitude?” or “It’s all in your head. If you choose to be happy, then you will be.” To an extent, I agree. But as I said before, if you don’t have it, then you don’t know what it’s like. You only know what people tell you, but it’s seriously not that easy.

Lately, I have been feeling two emotions – sadness and anger. No happiness, no joy, no good feelings. I get mad super easily and I get sad real quick. It’s not hard for me to drag my ass out of bed, like it used to be, because I have Karsyn’s smiling face to wake up to everyday and he says “Hiiiiiii momma!” and gives me a big hug. If that doesn’t make a person feel good, then I don’t know what does. But it the good feeling goes away quickly. I get up with him, get him something to eat, then sit down and I just can’t get up. I find myself getting mad at him constantly, for stupid things. But I cannot get up to go help him or show him how to do things, etc. because I am just too sad. Epic mom fail right there. I know I am a good mom and those that know me know that as well, but when I realize what I have done, I just break down and cry and beat myself up over it. I tell myself to do better, that he’s only a kid and he doesn’t know. But it’s hard. And raising a kid in itself isn’t as easy feat. Now, I hate to sound like I’m using my depression as a crutch or an excuse, I’m just being honest. Anyway, with Kade, I haven’t felt any emotion towards him. I get annoyed of him super quick. I don’t want him to touch me or kiss me or hug me or really even look at me. Is that the way a relationship should be? Hell. No. It hurts to feel this way, but I just can’t seem to pull myself out of it. I know I’m hurting Kade. He tells me so and I can see it in his eyes. I’m not always like this, but I have been for a little while and like I just said. I just can’t seem to pull myself out. I made myself an appointment with a therapist for Wednesday and I am super excited to go. I know it sounds silly, but not only do I NEED the help, but I WANT the help! I HATE feeling like this. I am not being myself and I just can’t figure out how to be happy again. Karsyn makes me happy and I would do anything for that kid, but it’s hard to stay upbeat all the time, when deep down and I am just sick and achy.

I am thankful that I have a supportive family that will stand behind me no matter what and will not judge me or think any less of me. They are so good to me. It’s funny how as you grow up, you appreciate your family. I can remember a time when I wanted absolutely nothing to do with my parents. But now, they are basically all I have. Family really is everything and I feel so sorry for those that don’t feel the same or that don’t have a great family like mine.

In my writing of this, I am asking you to please not judge me or think less of me. If that’s what you are doing, feel free to leave. But I want and need to share my stories because not only does it help me, but it helps others know that they are not alone and it helps them get through hard times. So please, if you are feeling bad, reach out to someone. Even me. I’m more than willing to help you and talk to you in any way I can. I always wanted to be a counselor when I grew up. There is nothing that I like more than to help someone.

In closing, listen to this song. I’ve had it on repeat for the last three days lol. {And in case you’re wondering, yes, I know every. single. word.}

P.S. A quick little note, the other day, a fellow boutique owner took her life. She has a couple little ones at home, under the age of 5. It pains me to see such good people down in the dumps and with unhealthy minds. There is help out there. I can’t say it enough. PLEEEEEEEASE reach out to someone.

What do you do to feel better? I need some advice and new things to try!

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Suicide

Suicide. One simple word. One scary word. A word with so much meaning. This word evokes many thoughts and feelings from me. I just saw a video (click THIS LINK to view the video) that my aunt shared on Facebook. It gave me the cold chills and even brought tears to my eyes. The cop – he knew something was up with this man. And when he saw the man trying to end his life, he saved him! The cop did not handcuff the man or treat him horribly, he simply stood him up and wrapped his arm around him. I shared this video with the caption “There is good in the world.” And I do believe it. I often wonder where the good is in this crazy, sick world. I often feel bad for bringing my sweetest child in to such a scary place. I can only protect him from so much. It’s 1:08 AM right now, as I’m writing this. I just couldn’t stop thinking about the video.

There is always a time and a place to talk about suicide awareness.

It’s a touchy subject and therefore it’s not talked about often, but according to save.org, a person dies from suicide every 16.2 minutes. That’s quite a bit of people! Roughly 6 people an hour. If you don’t know what it’s like to literally be at rock bottom and not want to even wake up, to not want to see your friends and family, to not want to do something you love doing, to just “sleep” forever, then you may not understand what I am going to say. I’ll tell you this: I know what it’s like to feel all of those things I have listed. I know what it’s like to contemplate suicide. I know how it feels to be at the lowest point ever. I’ve been there. Several times. I try to come off as a happy person who loves life – and at this point in my life, I really don’t have to try. Because I am happy. Because I do love my life. Don’t get me wrong – I do still have those days when I don’t even want to crawl out of bed, but I see my sweet son smiling at me, pulling me out of bed to play and I’m instantly better.

In the 5th grade, I was put through some tough shit. More than anyone of any age should ever have to go through. My mom was going to put my baby brother up for adoption. She was going to leave the state. She was going to leave me. She was a meth addict. She went to jail. I was no longer an only child in the home that I grew up in {my dads}. I didn’t matter anymore. My dad didn’t care about me because he was too wrapped up in his wife and new baby. He even flat out told me to my face that he “would ALWAYS take her side because she was his wife.” That sentence is still extremely clear in my head. I can see me standing in the kitchen corner and can hear him tell me that. No one was there for me anymore. I had to fend for myself. That is where my depression and independence stemmed.

I have contemplated suicide more times that I can count. I’ve even came THIS CLOSE several times, but my thoughts would always lead back to my siblings (these thoughts were before I had Karsyn). I couldn’t do that to them. I am the oldest. They looked (and still do) up to me. What a horrible example I would be setting for them. I didn’t want them to have to go through that. I didn’t really care about what my parents thought because I was a teenager and they were somewhat part of the root of my unhappiness. The last time I seriously ever considered killing myself sticks out in my head so clearly. It’s almost like I am reliving that awful day. I was out of town with a friend and we got in to some serious trouble. Our parents were called and her parent’s said she had to stay there at the DT. My mom told the cops to let me drive home. So I had about a 2 hour drive. By myself. I cried the entire way home. I called my mom after I had got some gas and then I shut my phone off. I turned it on about every 30 minutes and each time I had several texts from my mom and Kade. Kade was worried and my mom was just mad. I shut my phone off and cried some more. I looked at myself in the rearview mirror and I looked like I had been beat. My eyes were bloodshot from crying so hard. My entire face was puffy and black from my running mascara. I’m sure that people passing me thought I was crazy – and to an extent, I was. I could hardly see the road through my tears. I wasn’t paying attention to the road at all because my thoughts were elsewhere. Thinking about how I was going to do it. I just couldn’t go home and face the wrath of my parents. I knew I had made a huge mistake and it wasn’t ever going to get better. My life was over. “I can get off the freeway and take a side road and no one will ever find me.” “I’ll go drive off a cliff.” “I will pull over and crouch down in front of my car and when I see a semi coming, I’ll run out in front of it,” kind of like the man in the video and the train.

Despite these horrible thoughts, I made it home safe. I pulled up and my mom was waiting for me outside in the driveway with her hands on her hips. She was mad, angry. I slowly got out of the car and sat down and cried. “You get to call your dad and tell him what you did,” she said. “Noooooooooo!” I cried. There is seriously nothing worse than your parents being disappointed in you. Nothing. This all happened in the summer and I was supposed to be at my mom’s house for a month. My month had just started – I was maybe half way in. I ended up going back to my dads after a few days and I was beyond depressed. I was grounded. To my room. (No surprise there! This was a daily thing for me.) No phone. No computer. No going outside. No nothing. I couldn’t even call my mom for hell sake! I couldn’t handle it anymore. I sat in my bedroom, on my bed, bawling my eyes out, and wrote a letter. I had my little brother take it upstairs to my parents. I basically said it was let me move in with my mom or bury me. I couldn’t handle anything anymore. That night, my dad had my step-mom get rid of all the pills in the house and he bought a safe for all of the guns shortly after. They never said anything to me about it though. I moved out the next day. It was one of the best and one of the worst days of my life. Good because my life completely turned around. 360 degrees. Worst because I had to leave my brother and sister behind. I can remember my brother asking me, “Why are you leaving me?” I was only going one town away, but that question still haunts me.

Times were still rough for a little while, until the end of the that year, but then, I decided to put everything behind me because I wasn’t going to live like that anymore. I promised myself to never get that low again. To never think those thoughts again. To never want to hurt myself. To reach out to someone if I need help.

Today, I am a mom. I am a daughter. I am a sister. I am {almost!} a wife. I am strong. I have broad shoulders. I am confident. I am caring. I am sensitive. I get along with both my mom and dad. I am loved. I am cared for. And I am happy.

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If you are having suicidal thoughts, please reach out to someone! Feel free to email me! There are hotlines you can call {1-800-SUICIDE}. There are support groups you can join. Killing yourself is NOT taking the easy way out.