Content warning: this article covers mental health topics and may be triggering for some readers.
I have struggled with bipolar depression for almost five years. I have good days where I am my normal self and everything is handy dandy. But I also have bad days where all I want to do is lay in my bed and cry for no reason at all, or to just sit somewhere with my knees to my chest just stare at nothing.
Most people don't know how their depression comes to be or what causes it. For some people, it's just there. While others, like myself, experience a trauma in their life that they can't let go of. For me, it happened during eighth grade.
I was bullied a lot for my size and going to a private school was very hard because everyone was very cliquey and you were with the same 30 or so kids for eight years. Rumors spread fast. I had a friend online who lived in Washington at the time. He had depression so we would talk every day, either talking on the phone, texting, or FaceTiming. I would always help him through his bad times. He was my best friend, the only one who never judged me. But one day I got into trouble with my parents and got my phone taken away. I was unable to talk to him and help him. I eventually got my phone back, but he wasn't texting me any more. I was very worried about him and proceeded to look through Facebook to find anything about his whereabouts. I even looked at his mother's page and what I found scarred me for life.
It was an obituary that said, "in loving memory of." My best friend had committed suicide during my time away.
I have blamed myself every day because I wasn't there when he needed me the most. If I had been better, I could have saved him. I always put on a smile even though I was breaking inside. I struggled to stay afloat, especially when high school came around. It became so stressful and I started to really feel the symptoms of my illness. To this day, I still blame myself, but a little less. I was able to seek help from people and got the medication I needed. I now know I have people who care about me and can help me. My story is as unique as anyone else's. I am finally able to openly talk about it, even though I still hurt every day.
You'll know when you hit rock bottom. It is a feeling you will never forget and you may experience it more than once. It feels like you have nothing left, that no one wants you, and that you're all alone. But there is one good thing about hitting rock bottom — there is only one way left to go and that's up. You can pick yourself up and make something new and start over.
Be yourself, be you.
It is 100 percent OK to cry.
Crying is the best way to just let it all out. Crying shows what words cannot express. You cry because you are in pain and have been strong for far too long. It is okay to cry. Let it all out. Drive to a place where there is no one around, get out of your car, and just scream and cry. It will hurt and you will think "this makes me weak," but the fact is, crying is the best way to cope with anything and it is the easiest way to finally feel better. Don't hold back. Let the tears flow for as long as you need to and just breathe. You have a heartbeat and you are breathing, you are alive. You are alive and that means that you can get through whatever it is that is bothering you. You can make it.
Your story is your own unique life. No one will have the same story as you. It is yours to tell when you are ready. Once you share your story, it will feel like a weight lifted off your shoulders, but you must make sure you tell the right people who can help you. Some people need different things than others, depending on their situation.
Be yourself and find others who understand you and your situation whatever it may be
There are many different ways to help lessen the pain. One option is to talk to someone, you can't keep everything bottled up inside of you because once that bottle fills to the top, it will explode and you will explode. It will be hard talking about it, but you will feel so much better after you have let everything out. Find a person who you trust and who you know will listen to you and not judge you. It is also nice to find an outsider who can fully understand the situation. Also, there are many ways you can help yourself while you are at home. You can listen to calming music and relax. Or what works for me is writing or drawing. Even a nice bubble bath can help soothe your worries and frustrations.
There is pain and struggle every day in every single person's life, no matter how big or how small.
Every person has experienced their own version of pain and struggle. No one is perfect and everyone has their own story. You will be OK as long as you look towards your future. Your future where you are alive and, well, possibly with a family of your own. The promise of a future will help you cope with your present and will help you let go of your past.