“How many times had I let myself connect with someone only to have it thrown back in my face?”
It's RUOK? Day again and I'm not going to repeat my rant about the mental health version of valentine's day (you can read that here) but it seems like a good a day as any to write this. STOP PUTTING THE PRESSURE ON OTHERS TO CONTACT YOU. Show some initiative yourself. Your life is not more important than anyone else's. Which is pretty much the entire point of this blog. People suck. It's no secret that 13 Reasons Why really speaks to me for a few reasons but rewatching it a few weeks ago this quote hit hard and I started to write a pretty heated blog post about life and then stopped myself because I figured nobody even cares so why waste my time but now I'm back to writing it. I've been losing my shit the last few months and I don't care what people think because I'm not forcing anyone to read this but this is my reality. Then I worried this would alienate people or piss people off but then I laughed because the very people I'm talking about aren't in my life anyway, or barely, and why should I constantly be censoring myself so I don't hurt someones feelings when they don't care if they hurt mine? So really why am I even worried, I literally have nothing to lose.
So while I get inundated with messages about RUOK? (lol just kidding) here's my answer: I don't care about anything. I have no feelings about anything anymore. I'm definitely not happy, I'm not really sad either. I'm just meh. My sleep is so bad I only just realised it's Thursday 10 minutes ago. One day blurs into the next.
Artwork by Zombie Teeth Clothing
Four weeks ago I deleted Facebook. A week after that I deleted Twitter. I almost deleted Instagram too but I'm having way too much fun following nihilist memes. The thing is you can only try reaching out so many times and being ignored before you give up on everything. What's the point in having social media if nobody is social? There was no constant crying or wanting to die like last year, I mean death would be great but I'm not going too but I'll talk about that in a bit, I just don't feel anything. Nobody cares so why should I? I'd use Facebook as a diary in a way because the 'memories' feature comes in handy for keeping track of things. I'd just write what the latest was or how I was feeling as a status update figuring if anyone was available to talk maybe they'd say something, this was due to how many times I've tried to message someone and getting no reply or watching them go offline and taking it personally that they don't want to speak to me. The sad react feature was the worst thing to ever happen to facebook because it looks like people are sad for you but not enough to say hey do you need a chat or some help with anything? I feel like the car wreck on the side of the freeway that everyone is watching as they drive by but nobody wants to stop to help, which is fine but why are you here? After the rheumatologist appointment things have just been crap and I tried reaching out to people. Every single person left me on *seen*. I waited a week and not one reply. I suddenly had some understanding to why this guy I knew killed himself a few years ago. Nobody replied to him either. I gave up and deleted Facebook. The problem is with how health-related issues have been the last couple of years I relied on Facebook to stay in touch with people but the real problem is people don't understand how much you actually rely on something as trivial as a message to make you feel like you matter and instead claim to know how I feel and how they don't see anyone either and it's bullshit. You have jobs you see people at every day, you have band practice every week, photo shoots, makeup jobs, cosplay conventions, families, husbands/wives/boyfriends/girlfriends/kids/pets... I don't have any of that and you all know that, you just don't care. I can't work (and I really wish I could because being in debt constantly isn't fun), I have two relatives I hear from about three times a year. My social activity involves seeing my GP every 2-3 months and the Coles delivery person. I can go a month without seeing anyone. You don't have a clue what this is like. You don't understand how fortunate you actually are. You aren't alone. Being home alone at the end of the day is not the same thing at all. You have no fucking idea.
It was three weeks before I heard from anyone that I would consider a close friend and she apologised for being distant and invited me out. Which brings me to another point - if I'm not the one asking people if they want to do anything I don't get asked except for her and I'm not sure what's going to happen when she leaves the country. I'll cease to exist entirely I guess. I might ask her to send me postcards. My psychologist asked me if if I've ever tried to catch up with people and I lol'd because yes I do but as I mention later on there's only so many times you can do that and have it thrown in your face. Then there are other people who I have never asked because to be honest I don't know if they would even want too so rather than deal with any other possible rejection I don't. You want to know what I do get from people? "We don't invite you out anymore because you're too hard to find food for" - I can eat anywhere unless it's some Japanese place. If the menu is all dumplings you're just being a dick. I went to some meat themed restaurant for a friend's birthday and still managed to get a vegetarian food. It was just a shitty excuse on their part. Another friend tells me he doesn't invite me to BBQ's because I don't like *insert name here* as if I have some completely irrational reason for not liking this person. I mean this person almost ruined a wedding job I had by not doing the one thing I asked on the day because I can't be in two places at once (hence why wedding photographers hire 2nd shooters) and then not giving me the photos but sure I'm the one with the problem here and can't be invited over. It's like it doesn't even occur to them to invite me over even once and not the other person. Then there are the people who suddenly declare they want to catch up but I have to come to them. Everyone knows I struggle with travelling but sure I'll travel for 2+ hours on public transport just to make your life easier. My life isn't important. Message received loud and clear. My favourite line is "you live too far away" and again it's on me to go to them. The distance isn't shorter by me travelling instead of you. This is still just saying your time is more important than mine and I have to make the compromises. I talked about this with my psychologist last year how everyone has their best friends they can't live without and I'm not that person for anyone. I could die tomorrow and nobody would even know. I'm nobodies first choice for someone to hang out with ever. She kept trying to tell me that some people just don't know how to be good friends. I know she has a point but I'm still the common denominator here. Surely there's something wrong with me then? When people make it so clear you aren't that important why would you reach out when you really need help?
“Rejection always hurts but having it come from my best friend was the worst”
The biggest joke of all is somehow it's always my fault when somebody hasn't spoken to me in ages. Don't blame another person because you suck at communicating. That person is already feeling rejected by you, you don't then get to blame them because you never contacted them. You don't get to tell them that what they're feeling is wrong either. We feel rejected. I've had this happen so many times that you'd think I'd stop being surprised yet I always am, but with each time I just close off more. One psychologist told me I need to break down my walls but only let the right people in but how are you supposed to know who the right people are? They don't exactly have big neon signs on their heads to let you know.
I had a friend have an attitude change while out one night and on the way to her place she decided I needed to leave. I was fine with that, I'm no stranger to mood swings but it was how it all happened that was the problem. We got to her place and she went straight to her room. I was left just standing there with no idea how to leave like she wanted me too because her front door was locked and I couldn't get out. It's humilating having to ask the person who has told you to leave that they need to let you out. It's super fucking awkward. I figured when she was ready to talk she would since I had no idea if the problem was me or not but three months passed with nothing until I got a txt on my birthday. I almost didn't reply but in her mind I was the reason we stopped talking. I had to remind her what happened the last time we hung out. Months passed and we didn't talk again until we were at the same gig. I thought things went ok and the next day I psyched myself up to send a txt to say if she ever wants to hang out to let me know. I never got a reply. Now she just glares at me when we're in the same room together. I have no idea why and I'm not asking. I'm just done trying to please people.
When my back first started really playing up I could barely walk around my home and my two best friends just stopped talking to me. The moment when I needed my friends the most they weren't there. I'm the person who will ask how a friend is when they have a cold but here I was struggling to walk and not once did I get asked how I was doing or if I needed help with anything. Three months later and I was on my 2nd lot of medication. I posted on Facebook about feeling better, I could finally do something like laundry without crying. Suddenly one of them messaged me but instantly started talking about herself. I lost my shit. You can't just be friends with someone only when they're healthy and it suits you. What it basically came down to was she couldn't talk about herself so she had nothing else to say to me this whole time. But after that I spent the rest of the year asking if she wanted to do things, inviting her out and all I got was rejection after rejection. I've even found myself apologising to some people for being in pain and I hated myself for that. I can't help it if I'm in pain and if I start bitching about it it means it's pretty bad but here I was apologising constantly yet nobody has ever told me to NOT apologise which only made me feel like I had too more. I was so sick one night I didn't even feel like I could ask this friend to drop me off at the ER on the way home. Instead she dropped me home and I called 000 as soon as I walked through the door and spent the next 5 hours at the hospital.
Another person I hadn't spoken to in months because the last time I reached out they found my message amusing. I didn't. I was barely holding it together emotionally at the time and after being humilated at the hospital I didn't feel like repeating that minutes later with a friend when what I needed was someone to have a serious conversation with. Then my birthday came along and I invited a bunch of people and twice she left it on seen. I took that as a sign to stop trying because they're clearly are not interested in socialising with me. But suddenly a month later I'm getting a message how she misses talking to me. Well I'm not stopping anyone from saying hello. I'm right here, easy to find, literally going nowhere but if you've been ignoring the person for months you can't be surprised when they aren't opening up to you later.
"If someone asks you how you are, you are meant to say FINE. You are not meant to say that you cried yourself to sleep
last night because you hadn't spoken to another person for two consecutive days. FINE is what you say."
— Gail Honeyman (Eleanor Oliphant Is Completely Fine)
It's just one after another after another. I'm sorry if my problems are too heavy for you, imagine what it must be like being the person dealing with them all? I know nobody understands what I'm going through with my spine and that's cool but if you listened you'd get an understanding but it's like nobody is actually listening most of the time. But don't sit someone down to tell them you don't empathise with them (or change that to sympathise as if that's a better word choice) unless your goal is to push them over the edge. None of this is going to stop me writing about it on here though because Scheuermann's Disease is rare and if I can create some awareness I will. I was always there if someone needed someone to talk too but nobody is ever there for me. I don't feel like I can really have a serious conversation with anyone most of the time. There's one person I have randomly messaged out of the blue but I feel weird doing that when they're in another state and I've only ever met them for 5 minutes. Only once have I been out in public with someone and just candidly talked about depression and suicide and they were totally cool with it. She's also an Arts Therapist so maybe that's why. If someone asks how you are while out they don't actually want to hear the answer to that. Nobody wants to hear you're depressed. Nobody wants to know you have suicidal thoughts. They just want to hear the words "I'm fine". This is something I know plenty of people deal with. Instagram has been amazing for finding people who understand what you're going through whether it's depression or chronic illness. We all have the same stories, we all have the same kinds of friends who just don't understand and think we're being melodramatic/hypochondriac/attention seekers. We all feel alone but through this community we realise we aren't alone in our feelings or what we're going through.
Through all of this there's only one person who seems to actually be interested in helping me. I've never asked her too but she does things because she can. At Christmas she bought me a muscle pain relief cream to see if that would help with my back, then expensive anti-inflammatory tea and for my birthday she bought me a diffuser to see if it would help me sleep. She even drives all the way to my place just to come have a coffee and say hello. No motivates anywhere. I have no idea what I did to deserve this woman's kindness but I'm always worried of when that friendship will end and how I will screw it up because allegedly I always seem too.
The last thing I'm going to talk about is suicide. I've had suicidal thoughts since I was 15. When things are super bad the thoughts come back but they've always been thoughts. I've never done anything despite wanting too. One time I hit a really low point I sat on the kitchen floor for hours trying to think of any reason why I shouldn't and I couldn't. I couldn't think of a single reason why life is worth living and honestly I still don't. What I have found over the years though is you can't talk about having these thoughts with anyone. The moment anyone knows you're in that place they vacate your life - which is precisely what all suicidal people need is for everyone to leave them. December 28th 2017 I was going to do it. It was the first time I was so deadly serious about doing it. I even googled how much I needed to take to be fatal but I didn't have enough pills. Due to how many panadiene forte I was taking per fortnight my GP arranged it so I could get 3 boxes at a time which was just the right amount apparently. I had a box and a half. A week later I saw my GP and told him I needed to see a psychologist again and why. At the time I didn't tell him these thoughts involved my medication because I didn't want my pain killers taken off me but I ended up not taking them for most of the year so I didn't have the temptation in the house. The irony though is now I get severe side effects taking them, one time had me hooked up to an EKG machine. I saw the psychologist from February to October last year and during that time I didn't try to do it again but I had a plan.
The first page of I Am Not A Serial Killer is about Mrs Anderson who died but wasn't found for a few weeks and the indignity of it all and I felt personally attacked reading it that I needed to take a moment turning to page 2. Turns out it was a great book but that first page still haunts me. That would be me. If I killed myself it would be weeks, maybe even months before I was found. Nobody would even notice I was missing until there's suddenly some smell assuming my crackhead neighbours can smell anything still. So the plan was to be an asshole and do it in a hotel because then I'll be found because I haven't checked out the next morning and I won't be some rotting slimy mess that can't be identified. I used to read about serial killers and forensics a lot as a kid, I know how these things go. Then that became a "If I keep my house messy I won't do it because I don't want people to see this place". Failed logic but welcome to my brain. It's also easy to maintain since my place doesn't believe in storage and if you start an art project on the floor that's half of your place covered in crap.
Since deleting Facebook though it changed again but what I never expected was what happened next.
I follow an account on my personal instagram that's for people with Chronic Illness. Lots of memes and quotes we all relate to and every single one of us has had the "have you tried yoga" line thrown at us. I commented underneath this particular post and if I said this to a normie they'd lose their mind or shut down completely because the word suicide is taboo let alone saying you have a suicide plan. Saying suicide is the muggle world's version of saying Voldemort. Based on past experiences I was expecting to be attacked or even have my comment removed yet people were writing back their own experiences and how they understand completely but one person stood out - she told me I gave her a reason to live. That threw me completely but if my morose views of the world helps another person then that's great. We got talking after that and we have similar issues in life, multiple health problems and people who don't understand and doctors who can't/won't help.
Next time I'm opening up to someone is my autopsy
So now I'm at the end and what's my point after all of this? My point is people suck. The only person you can rely on is the person you have to pay $100 an hour for an unbiased opinion. If you're an asshole your psychologist is going to tell you and you paid them for the privilege. So don't sit back waiting for someone to come to you if they have a problem because they won't. If someone is seeing a psychologist/psychiatrist that doesn't mean you don't have to ask them how they're doing either. You have no idea what has happened in their lives. People are icebergs and you probably barely know what's on the surface. I sure as hell haven't shared that much here, I've just given a glimpse into why I (and others like me) don't come to you when we need someone to talk too. You don't know what made them become the person they are today and yes EVERYTHING in our lives shapes who we are, you're ignorant to think otherwise. You don't know how many times they've been let down in life so it makes it hard for them to trust people or come forward. They probably came forward and you left them on seen not thinking it's anything important. Have I asked anyone today? Also no, because I'm trying to deal with my own problems and for a change I'm choosing to be selfish. I'm not reactivating Facebook anytime soon either. Life is so much easier when you make the choice not to see people. If you're going to be ignored anyway it may as well be on your terms.
Other things to look at:
Last year I put together a Top 50 list of songs about Mental Health with the help of two others (because I don't do heavy metal). #3 is pretty much my theme song.
I want to give a big thank you to Zombie Teeth Clothing for letting me use his artwork on my post. This guy is an absolute legend and supporter of mental health and women's rights. You can follow him on instagram here and if you click on either of the artworks it will take you to his website.