I don't discuss the state of my mental health with people. Not really.
A few months ago as I was heading out the door, I mentioned to one of my roommates that I needed to pick up a prescription. "What kind of prescription?" she asked.
"Medication. Antidepressants," I said.
"Oh. I didn't know you took antidepressants."
"Yeah." I dragged out the word in an excessive amount of syllables to avoid an awkward silence and to fill empty space in the air. I left the room and shut the door behind me.
I can think of about four people in my life, outside of a therapist and a psychiatrist, who I am comfortable talking with about my mental health. Only one of these people I am willing to go in depth with.
I don't like talking about my mental health.
Talking about it reminds me that my brain is abnormal, that I am abnormal. It reminds me that I have to take pills to feel happy, to feel some kind of normal. It reminds me that without pills, I feel nothing. It makes me feel ashamed. It makes me feel weak. I want to be strong, but how I can I be when every breath inside my body is shaped by sadness?
Abnormality inside my body where I can't see it is something I want to forget.
One time, a friend came over to my dorm to visit. I had recently bought a light therapy lamp and I began explaining to my friend the logistics: it's meant to emulate light from the sun, you're supposed to sit within 15 inches of it 30 minutes per day.
"Why don't you just go outside and sit in the sun for 30 minutes?" he said.
If the solution were that easy, I would. He suffered from depression, so I thought he would understand. Maybe he did. Maybe he didn't. Maybe his mind was molded to not care. I shut my mouth after that.
The dark shadows caressing my brain are uninvited guests. They stole the life from my party.
I will have to spend the rest of my life running away from depression. I've heard a girl say, "Your mental illness doesn't make you weak. It makes you stronger because you've survived every bad day and you're still here." It's difficult to believe that when I'm running a marathon I can never win.
Some people, like Youtubers, are open and willing to talk about their mental health.
If that helps them feel better, that's great for them. I will never be able to fit into their crowd.