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Well. I gave it a try


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I went to my friend's house to stay "safe" and distracted while my kids are at camp. I was supposed to stay until I pick them up Friday night. But, I am going home Thursday morning. It is just too hard to be "on" all the time. The mask gets heavy and I get tired and exhausted from pretending all is fine. My friend found me crying in her yard yesterday and wanted me to open up and talk about it. But, I just couldn't. She is my oldest, dearest friend in the world who has walked every difficult path with me and all I could do was cry and shake my head. I am seriously, deeply broken. So, I am heading home in the morning so I can spend one day lifeless on the couch before putting the happy face back on to get my kids.

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You tried and thats all anyone can ask. Well done. Do you know the motto 'If at first we don't sucseed try and try again'. So take a little break from wearing the mask if thats what you think you need, sometimes it's difficult to be yourself around others. But don't give up, please. Why don't you try again tomorrow, pop back to your friend's home and don't spend all day alone?

all the best xxx

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This is such a sad post. I read it last night and found myself thinking about it at points during the evening.

You seem to feel ashamed by the fact that things are feeling so numb and awful. There isn't anything to feel ashamed about, at least not on account of expressing the emotion. Emotion is totally natural and we all have them, and most of us express them too. Sure social rules say don't be expressive, but these rules don't apply so much when you are with an old dear friend. You do need to think about reciprocity (e.g., being able to be there for your friend if you expect her to be there for you), but simply being emotional is not a crime.

I agree with Kalima in that sometimes you need to take a break, gather yourself and then try again. You may think things are hopeless, but when you feel this low you can't trust your thoughts, except to trust that they will be leading you to conclude things are worse than they actually are (e.g., cognitive biases (AKA "shit-colored glasses") are probably operating.

You were struggling with the idea of whether to go inpatient for a while just before. You had a lot of shame attached to that decision and clearly you've wanted to avoid needing to go even though you were thinking in one part of your mind that it would be a good idea for you to go IP. I'm thinking that your treatment regime isn't working sufficiently and that if for no other reason, IP would be a good place to go to work on a new one.

Maybe you can talk about this shameful feeling? It's clearly getting in the way of your accessing treatment and connecting with people who care about you. It would be good to understand it better rather than just to avoid feeling it.

Another thought that I tentatively will extend: If you and your doctor have explored all combinations of medication that are available, there are other options to consider too, such as ECT. No one likes to think about that one, but in its modern incarnation, it is not the horror people imagine it to be. It often lifts mood when nothing else will, and when the urge to suicide is looming and powerful. It has an effect on short term memory and causes amnesia for events prior to treatments, for sure, but it is an option that frequently works that you can have in your back pocket as a suicide alternative. On my internship, I met several patients who spoke well of the procedure in broad terms (acknowledging that it has its drawbacks, too).


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