Article by: Elpida Verita
Translation: Harriet Spala
The people in my life (family, friends, acquaintances), have given their own battle to help me, ever since I remember myself battling with my issues. It has not been easy for them, actually more than often they have failed regardless of the given effort. It is so hard to answer the question: “Why aren’t you feeling well?” when everything seems to be alright. I guess that maybe nothing goes wrong but there are so many moments I feel that way.
So many times I long to open up and explain all the things that overcome me… instead I drive them further way. I am certain of the fact that they whole heartedly wish to be by my side and support me… however I do not choose this path. Why?
…because I always think:
How could they possibly understand that there are moments where I wish to fall fast asleep before I totally collapse?… moments where I am completely unable to get out of my bed or get out of the house and feel a soft breeze…to feel alive? When I am depressed, I feel so sick I only get worse. Maybe I am not even sick… maybe I am just worn out from trying to be strong for a lengthy period of time. That is when I do not wish any member of my family or any of my friends or acquaintances to be there. It’s when I wish to dwell into my dark thoughts and feel the sadness that lingers inside me. I am constantly being asked why I feel so unpleasant since everything is going on well in my life and why cannot I think positively instead of collapsing into a thousand pieces. Truth is that at moments like that I do not have the power or the will for such a thing, besides if I had either I would not be in such a state. There is a point where the questions stop since I am totally incapable to describe or explain what is wrong. I then get angry, thinking that they do not observe or don’t care, while all the time I am the one who feels cold inside and keeps a distance.
You see it’s this great need that occurs… and the really vivid emotional dependencies. Like a song which we listen to in various remixes, apart from small variations, its lyrics and tune is always the same. The stone cold reality is that no matter how many relationships I have been into, they all had the same unwanted ending. Again I keep the people in my life at a distance even if I truly suffer from my mistakes… no matter my suffering from this need that grows larger and larger in time. I am constantly asked why I function that way, why do I enter relationships that are simply abnormal. How could I explain that I feel security – even for a short while – through these abnormal relationships – abnormal according to them?
They wonder how on earth such a happy person could possibly feel so much pain. However we are not always able to escape this pain once and for all during our lives. Each of us feels pain because of his/her important reason – I feel pain due to my disorder or more correctly the way I handle this pain. I would so like to make it disappear, while the only thing I can do is to learn to live with it and monitor it and take care of myself.
The moments I feel happy – and really energetic – are not many. I feel so good during these times of course that I do not have the slightest wish to talk about all that is happening to me while I am weak and depressed. I am being asked how come since I look so well how can that be possible since only a short while ago I was feeling so low and probably think that since I do look well I probably seek attention and this makes me feel really sad. Unfortunately I do not select when I feel happy or sad – this is part of my disorder. My disorder “selects” my mood. When I feel melancholy I also feel exhausted and I don’t pretend being like that… on the contrary this mood fluctuation torments me.
How many unanswered questions must they have, while I go through from one extreme to the other… and yet it’s so hard to understand – and this persistence of caring for me is not always the best choice. This is a battle – a hard battle for me which often exhausts me or terrifies me.
There are moments where I get stuck in the past, to traumas that seem to take some sort of shape ready to invade me. I cannot bear the idea of the resurfaced traumas. I only have to bear it for a while until they retreat and vanish… maybe not forever but at least for a while. I must remember every time to take a deep breath and believe that this too shall pass …just like it does every time this situation occurs.
I know I am very difficult to live with. The difficulty increases during the peaks of my extreme mood fluctuations. The only thing I need is to give myself priority and care, either by staying in bed for a whole day or calming down my demons, by keeping myself occupied by watching any TV series without talking too much – or even at all!
I hope my family my friends and my acquaintances don’t define me by my illness and don’t see my illness as my main character…my illness is just a part of me that I strive every day to live with. I hope they do not feel desperate when I don’t respond to their efforts to help me… it’s just that there are times I need to be alone on my own – and its then when it’s really difficult to communicate with them.
I hope my family my friends and my acquaintances do not consider all my reactions as a part of my illness: when I laugh aloud, when I get enthusiastic, when I feel sad and cry it does not mean that I am in a manic state or a depressed state respectively. I do go to extremes when everything is too intense and the feeling is strong and it lasts longer than what it ought to. I hope that they don’t feel that everything that is happening to me is like a game with cruel intentions… because every time I go to emotional extremes I suffer and I lose a part of myself.
I hope they realize that I often long for their company and that my distant behavior during my hard moments does not mean that I wish to exclude them from my life … I need them so! It’s just that I have to battle through my own life because nobody else can do it for me and nobody can make me feel better or cure me if I ever gave up and surrendered in depression. Surrender you see is not an option!