I read a very sad story today about depression, resulting in the death of a young man who thought no-one cared. Very sad but depression is not logical, it is illogical but while in the throes you absolutely believe your perspective is true. I know I still go there all too often. People say depression is visible in the eyes, voice and speech, however, it is too easily hidden. The saddest people are very often those making you laugh, the life and soul of any gathering, because they don’t want sympathy and certainly don’t want others to feel, suffer, or even know the level of pain they feel each and every day.
How do I know this? From the age of, about, 13 I was the life and soul of every gathering, family get-together and social occasion, behind closed doors I spent a lot of time on my own or with a few close friends, close because we all talked about different ways to commit suicide. Our club discussed the ins and outs of suicide, this, believe it or not, was a kind of therapy. We had our own unique club, we all understood depression as we all suffered. We took strength from each other, now I find myself alone for most of the time and even getting out of bed is a struggle every day. Often I find the telephone ringing, but leave it for the voice mail. Doorbell rings but, if it’s important they’ll leave a note right? Then I find that my sickness benefit has been stopped because I didn’t answer the phone and they couldn’t be bothered to leave a message even though I’ve told them I will not answer the phone unless I know who’s calling, and even then only sometimes.
Logic has no bearing on this at all. I sit around for days without putting any clothes on, or I’ll go out in bare feet to put the bin out, occasionally I’ve even gone out naked to put the bin out or get it in. Not a pretty sight, no-one cares enough to call over, it takes 3 or 4 weeks to get an appointment to see the dr, and she appears to care only when I’m there, if I ring and ask to speak to her she is busy, yes I know but I would appreciate a call back at some point. That’s too much to ask, is it? If nobody cares about me why should I care? Yes, I know I’m overweight but I comfort eat, it makes me feel better at the time, for about 2 seconds, then I feel bad. Feeling bad is something I really excel at. I manage to hide my depression from everyone, that doesn’t mean I don’t suffer it just means I’m good at hiding what I feel.
Colleagues at work, most of them anyway, will never know how bad I feel. Occasionally talking to someone on the phone, my voice will crack and I’ll make an excuse to put them on hold while I get my mask in place again. No-one ever seemed to notice even when I was sitting at my desk wiping tears from my face. I finally broke down with one customer, she complained about my behaviour and I was suspended, taken back as my manager felt it was a one-off and out of character. Three months later I was sacked for failing to call the complaining customer back to apologise, even though most of the time I’d been told to take customer details and not to deal with anything myself as there was a call waiting time of 40 minutes plus.
Had I not changed from agency to permanent 3 weeks prior to the complaint after 5 years as a temp, then I could have brought a claim for unfair dismissal, had I proof the manager sacking me did so because of my sexual preferences or nationality, again I could have successfully appealed this decision. If the law gave equal rights to those temp staff as permanent employees I’d have been given my job back or copious amounts of money to stay away. None of this helped, the sacking caused a snowball effect in my life, I’d been buying my home with my wife of 7 years, this was repossessed, Social Services decided to take my son out of my care as he was beginning to care for me. My wife then left me when I was staying in bed all day for weeks at a time. Is it any wonder I wanted to end it all?
Every time I think I’m getting there, something else goes wrong and, bingo, back to square one with a vengeance. Does anyone care enough to help? Apparently not, which makes today a good day to die. Every day without fail, only my son stops me, but there will come a time, oh so soon it seems, when he’ll make excuses not to call over. That’s when my life will end!