- complaints of pains, including headaches, stomachaches, low back pain, or fatigue
- difficulty concentrating
- difficulty making decisions
- excessive or inappropriate guilt
- irresponsible behavior — for example, forgetting obligations, being late for classes, skipping school
- loss of interest in food or compulsive overeating that results in rapid weight loss or gain
- memory loss
- preoccupation with death and dying
- rebellious behavior
- sadness, anxiety or a feeling of hopelessness
- staying awake at night and sleeping during the day
- sudden drop in grades
- use of alcohol or drugs and promiscuous sexual activity
- withdrawal from friends
To some of you, you know exactly what these are symptoms of- maybe you’ve lived through it or you’ve written a paper about it, or maybe you have no idea what I’m talking about yet. My entire life I’ve been struggling with chunks of time that I just feel sad, helpless, useless, unimportant, un-cared for, you name it! It’s hard to look myself in the mirror sometimes… so yes, after finally getting tired of these periods of time that I usually block out when I become normal again, I’ve decided to get on the computer and figure out if what’s wrong with me is normal teenage hormone type stuff or if it could be more serious. The symptoms I have listen above are that of teen depression which is a really serious thing, about 20% of people will experience depression before reaching adulthood… that’s a large amount.
I just kind of wanted to share this personal part of my life with you guys since I’m sure you’ve noticed that I’ve been a little down lately… it feels good to get it out. I’ve gone to two different counselors in my life and am planning to have a conversation about this with my mom to get a new one who would be more helpful to me in this specific area. So since I’ve decided to share something pretty personal today, I think I’ll tell you a story that embarrasses me a little bit, just because I need to get it off my chest and it’s related.
When I was a Sophomore in high school, just two short years ago, I had a boyfriend named Jon. He was a really nice guy and we were a lot alike but he was also really immature and had the ability to change from nice to horribly mean within seconds. We were having issues and I turned to a group of kind of nerdy guys to befriend. It was great… I finally felt that importance I’d always lacked that caused me to feel really empty inside. The pathetic part of it all is that I feel like I kind of used them because they hadn’t ever really had girls talk to them so I meant a lot to each of them… they loved me, they crushed on me, they thought I was the coolest girl on Earth. The boys would constantly tell me about how they didn’t understand why I was friends with them while “more attractive” guys would talk to me and they would tell me about how I was different from other girls. Do you know how happy that made me? Do you know how fulfilled I felt? I was literally flying. My grades were all A’s, I was satisfied, I could look in the mirror and love the person looking back at me… all because I meant something to someone, I was important. Sure, it was wrong of me to use them but it benefited everyone in the end. Two of those awkward, nerdy (but wonderfully amazing) boys have girl friends now and the other two are really good with girls! The sad part is that we all just kind of stopped talking eventually… we grew apart. They went on to bigger and better things while I slid slowly back into the darkness of my depression. As I realized that those boys didn’t need me anymore, I lost my purpose along with the pep in my step. My Junior year wasn’t nearly as terrible as my freshman year had been (don’t get me started on that) but it definitely wasn’t a happy time.
That is until around December when I was forced into going to a movie with my best friend, her “friend” (she swore she didn’t like him), and the guy that I had been talking to. That boy’s name is Alex, he’s a good friend of mine to this day but, trust me, us trying to date was an annoying emotional roller coaster- I’m glad it’s over. Alex left the movie early after a fight we had involving him texting one of my friends to “hangout” because his parents weren’t going to be home… I don’t exactly need to fill in the blanks for you there. Anyways, my best friend had brought this guy that she claimed to not like named Ethan. BOOM, it just hit you didn’t it? If you read my blogs you know exactly what I’m talking about now. That relationship picked me back up off my feet and made me happy again- finally. It was honestly everything I’d ever wanted and more. Ethan made me feel special, important, and, most of all, needed. I felt like he needed me and that made the emptiness I felt inside go away. Then, I know you know what happens next but I’ll tell you anyways, we broke up in October of this year after eight solid and amazing months. So now, here I am, back in the hole I’ve stuck myself in many times before in my young life… alone, blaming myself, crying, feeling empty. I know I shouldn’t place so much of my happiness upon the shoulders of any single person, or group of people, ESPECIALLY MALES. However, I can’t help it… it’s like my whole self-acceptance is based on other’s perception of me. Why? I mean when Ethan broke up with me and I saw that dull look in his eyes it killed me, his eyes said it all… they told me more than his words could ever say, maybe even more than he knew he wanted to say. When I looked into his beautiful, big brown eyes, I could see our relationship’s destiny written out, plain as day. Normally when I looked into them, I could see endless possibilities and a reassurance that he truly loved me… I could see that he was there, in the moment, and that he was actually listening to me. But that day, as we stood in the bookstore, I lost hope. It’s almost as if with one single look he took everything away from me. It’s not fair to him to say it’s his fault because it isn’t, if you aren’t happy with your girlfriend/boyfriend, you should end it and you have every right to. The problem wasn’t him, it’s me… I placed so much of my worth on him. You know why? Because that’s my pattern, it’s what I do. It feels good to be able to share that with someone and I really hope you understand. Yes, I have depression- Yes, I’m going to start therapy (hopefully)- Yes, I know I have a problem and I don’t think I should base my happiness on anyone except myself. The good thing about all of this is that I’ve located the problem, now I can work toward self-improvement and, with any luck, I’ll begin to love myself instead of counting on other people to love me. It wasn’t fair how much I depended on Ethan. To be honest, I really hope that God will bring the two of us back together someday. Not because that’s the only way I will be happy again but because I truly love him and I know that in order to have a successful relationship I need to learn to love myself.
God, I think I finally understand. I always say that “everything happens for a reason” but I’d been growing impatient to find the reason for the past few months… I’ve finally figured it all out. I have to love me before I can expect anyone else to. My depression will not go away on it’s own, I’ll need your help along with a professional but I will get through this. ❤
Thanks to all of my readers for your never-ending support ❤ I don’t know what I’d do with myself if I didn’t have this wonderful venting tool!