I am both heartbroken and angry as I write this.
Losing 4 friends, their kids or friends spouses in the last 6 months, due to suicide or overdose is breaking my heart.
Are they doing it because they are trying to “keep up with the Jones’s”?
Because they can’t find happiness?
Because they aren’t connected to authentic friends?
Because they don’t feel like the best man/woman, husband/wife, son/daughter?
Some of the people were connected to small groups and a church! If we are telling people that helps, why didn’t it?
The only thing I can think of, is that it takes AUTHENTIC living with others in community to help. Will that cure all problems, of course not. It is HARD.
Letting people in to see the ugliness, self-doubt, depressed, frustrated, whiney person we can all be is not easy. Some people will let one or two in, but not everyone.
I am part of a group where there are 3 people who battle extreme depression. The one I have seen make HUGE strides, attends small group, completed a step study (a Celebrate Recovery program that goes down to the roots of the “why” we are feeling what we feel) and continues to grow reaching out to take any class he can to try and learn more information to better himself and his situation.
Yet another one has gone the route of getting a psychologist, and is making great strides, if not totally comfortable opening up to the group.
And the third has chosen some friends to confide in but leans mostly on their family. Has not reached out, YET, for help as doctor’s haven’t worked in the past, nor has sharing it with others. And the depression comes back in a crushing way with each difficulty in life. The only thing that seems to help lesson the intensity and/or frequency is by staying busy being needed. It doesn’t take it away, but isolation, though sought after, makes it so much worse.
As I talked with my husband about our friends who have passed recently, we started talking about the men. How I wished they had mentors to talk to, like my husband. He, of course, responded how he is no one special. How could he lead other guys as a mentor, he still doesn’t know what he is doing and is on a day to day struggle with his life.
I replied, “You WENT through what some of these guys are going through. You were at a point you felt so guilty you couldn’t ‘keep up’, and you weren’t enough for your family. You KNOW that desperation and loneliness and you made it through. All you need to do is let them know they CAN get through it. You did. And then listen.”
If you are battling depression, talk to someone who has been there. Talk to a doctor. Talk to a friend. Talk to a pastor. Talk to someone. If that doesn’t help, talk to someone else.
There are people who have been there and made it through. You can too. It is worth it.
And if you feel that your family is better off without you, THAT IS A LIE. It is SO much worse for your family with you gone. If you can’t stay here for yourself, do it for them.
If you have battled depression, anxiety, suicidal thoughts and have conquered them and/or continue to conquer them…help someone by sharing it! You don’t know who around you needs to hear it. You might save someone’s life by having the guts to share your story.
What I learned today…life can be hard. But others have gone through what we are going through and made it. There is help. We need to find it. Hike up your britches, and ask for help…and then put in to action the direction you get. You are LOVED.
**Please don’t be offended by this post. I have only felt the pull of depression for the first time in the last year, and can’t begin to imagine what it is like on a daily, monthly, yearly basis. Praying for each and every person that reads this post and fights this battle constantly. XOXOXO