Sunday, February 17, 2013

the perils of depression

So while it was apparently no surprise, country singer Mindy McCready killed herself today.

I am not remotely a country music fan, and I'm certain I've never heard one of her songs. But I am certain I've been depressed. Often. Enough to want to kill myself? Enough to at least give it some serious thought.

I get so tired of people who say "I don't understand how people can do that. They had so much to live for," blah blah blah. You know what? If you're able to say that, you don't understand, and you need to be grateful and then STFU. There is nothing worse than being trapped in the hell of your own mind. If you're just a little down in the dumps on a random Sunday afternoon because you have to go back to work on Monday, you aren't depressed. If you can't go to work for a month because you're too miserable to get out of bed, take a shower and get dressed, then you sort of have a clue.

This poor woman left behind two little boys who no longer have parents. (One of them still has a father who isn't in the picture, and the other's father also killed himself.) They are in for a lifetime of therapy, have already been in foster care once, and may end up there permanently again. One of the Big Lies of depression is that "nobody will miss me if I check out." I admit to thinking that myself. Playing poor, pitiful me is weirdly soothing; it gives you validation for what you're thinking about doing.

I may not have an intimate partner, and I may not have raised my child, but I certainly have a stack of friends who would miss me. It would be unfair of me to traumatize them for my own selfish reasons. But you aren't thinking reasonably when you're thinking about doing it.

I can't say I blame her for taking the road that she chose. I hope that she's found some peace at last. I hope all who are thinking along those lines reach out for help first. But if there comes a time it gets to be too much, one last time -- I understand.

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