It’s The Guilt, Not Depression, That Is Going To Be The End Of Me

I have pretty much accepted that I will be chronically depressed until the day I die, but recently I’ve noticed that my racing thoughts have been more about how to alleviate my guilt than what I can do about my depression. I suppose that since I’ve become apathetic about the idea that I could ever be free of depression, my ravaged, very pissed off gray matter refuses to stop torturing me and so now has turned to plaguing me with crippling thoughts of guilt for all my transgressions throughout my life. So as I drift off to sleep each night and slowly awaken each morning, guilt plagues me.

So what am I guilty of? Or about? And why? I. Do. Not. Know. But I’m beating myself up about everything, every single minute of every single day. I don’t have any specific acts of horribleness in my past or present. I don’t have a cache of any regrettable misdeeds. I don’t have any skeletons in any of my closets. There’s nothing nefarious going on behind my closed doors. But I am tortured by unanswered questions as to why I feel so damn guilty.

For the past several years, my mental health has deteriorated tremendously. People think negatively of me. I’m too needy, I’m over the top. I’m Too Much. My astonishing record of being ghosted by family and friends increases daily. I’ve lost my mojo, apparently, and I don’t know how or why or when that happened. And since I don’t have any definitive answers, I naturally cannot help but question myself constantly and carry around this burden of guilt. What have I done? What did I do? What is so bad about me?

Here are some possibilities:

Because I’m chronically depressed, I have not been a good and worthy person in the areas of wife, mother, daughter, sister, niece, in-law, friend, employee.

I didn’t attend many of my kids’ sporting events because it was excruciatingly boring and always too cold, too hot, too far away.

I stopped cooking dinner somewhere along the way when my kids’ schedules became an obstacle to my trying to pull together a meal that everyone would be present for and also like what I was serving.

I don’t clean my house. I have a cleaning service who does everything, from vacuuming to laundry and everything in between.

My kids mostly took the bus to school over the years; I didn’t drive them unless I had to, depending on what various magnet schools they were attending. Speaking of which, I made my kids go to magnet schools, thereby forcing them to be separated from their neighborhood friends.

It appears that I was one lazy-ass wife and mother.

I wasn’t the dutiful daughter. I fought with my mom and still do to this very day.

I stopped sending cards and gifts to my myriad of stepmothers, stepfathers, half-siblings, step-siblings, long lost biological father; there were just too many.

I left my job of 15 years because I wanted to spend more time with my children. (Oh, and also, the constant sexual harassment from my boss just became untenable. I did not want to have sex with him, ever, and therefore he made my work life a living hell.) As it turned out I continued working for that boss, from home for ten more years, and I was never forgiven for disallowing him the daily pleasure of ogling my live-and-in-person-self any longer. But he paid me well, and I needed the income so one could argue that I prostituted myself for 25 years even though I never, ever, went along with what he wanted and apparently thought he deserved.

Bottom line: no matter what I do and did, it’s just not ever going to be good enough. I did so many things wrong. Now I could conclude this missive with a perfectly good and acceptable list of reasons for why I was such a miserable bitch who did all those terrible things, but that wouldn’t be any fun would it? Why ruin a perfectly good essay about a useless, unworthy, lazy woman who is getting exactly what she deserves? Karma’s a bitch, right?

You’re probably wondering how I can live with myself, having done such a shitty job of being a human being who lured people into my life only to treat them like shit, allowing myself to have them tend to my every need whilst I lay in my bed, unable to get up due to the black of the blackest monster living in my brain, my closest ally, Depression. Yes, I am guilty of all these things, and many others. Yes, I indeed do have to live with myself, accompanied by Guilt, residing cozily alongside Depression, and also, let’s throw in some PTSD (due to traumatic events in my life, not the least of which is the hideous sexual harassment during my career), to the mix, resulting in a recipe gone terribly wrong, in my gray-but-ever-darkening-matter, the massive mess of miswired milieu inside my head.

I respectfully thank you, reader, for indulging me, and helping me to make some sense out of this wretched guilt. It’s much clearer to me now. I deserve to be judged, convicted and found guilty, and it has earned me a life sentence. I would have rather gotten a death sentence.

In Response To Those Who Just Don’t, Won’t, Can’t Get It

I have been throwing shitballs at the walls for over three years hoping to see if anything sticks. I’ve suffered from severe clinical depression for 40 years and was well managed with diligent attention to therapy and medications. Now, nothing works. Medication-resistant. I’ve tried everything, truly, from the very latest meds, independent psychiatric assessments from respected hospitals, meditation, yoga and all related types of treatment, more exercise, better diet, new therapists, ECT, a suicide attempt, several hospitalizations and on and on. The pain never stops. The tears never stop. I can’t work. I’ve left my family in order to save them; no one begged me to stay. I’ve lost virtually every friend I’ve ever had. I’ve turned to God. He’s ignoring me like everyone else. There’s nothing left, except my lonely, isolated self sitting in a pile of shit that has fallen from the walls.

Continue reading “In Response To Those Who Just Don’t, Won’t, Can’t Get It”

Random Thoughts: My Six Word Stories-Volume Three

Taxes, Diet. My least favorite words.

Saw my groom, made my exit.

Lou, too blue. Who knew? Few.

Does Mother Nature need some Xanax?

Stockpile “happy pills”. Chaos is inevitable.

Sometimes, it’s not who, but when.

Tomorrow is day after tomorrow’s yesterday.

The meaning of life? Define life.

Kids’ student loans will outlive me.

You need space? See ya never.

Need ideas for my gratitude journal.

Don’t have kids til they’re thirty.

Red flags? Bad vibes? Extricate yourself.

My least favorite child? “Not Me”.

This is it? There’s nothing more?

Mom was wrong always and never.

Path of least resistance is lazy.

The low road is terribly overcrowded.

You’ve lost yourself; who has you?

Being invisable, unavailable, is powerfully peaceful.

I am governed by despotic teenagers.

Just tell the truth. I’ll live.

Lost power due to internal storm.

I said I’m fine. I lied.

Being Ghosted: It Was All A Lie

From the prompt posted on Thecreative.cafe
“Half of the people lie with their lips; the other half with their tears”― Nassim Nicholas Taleb

“Ghosted” is a new-ish term to me. I don’t know, maybe it’s been around for a while and I just didn’t know how popular it had become in our current lexicon. When I look up the word in my trusty online dictionary app, the definition I’m referring to in this story is 23rd on the list of definitions applicable to the word, as follows: 

to suddenly end all contact with a person without explanation, especially in a romantic relationship: They dated for a month and then she ghosted.”

“to leave a social event or gathering suddenly without saying goodbye: I’m getting tired so I think I might just ghost.”

Well there ya go. Now I have a word for what has happened. I’ve been “ghosted”. In my case it didn’t happen in a romantic relationship but rather a BFF relationship (Best Friends Forever, for anyone who is way out of the loop).

I’ve accepted that I am the common denominator; I know I haven’t had the most pleasing personality lately, or the most cheerful heart, as my therapist used to say. I am acutely aware that I’ve become quite unlikeable. But what I don’t know is why? What did I do that was so beyond the pale that someone who had been a very close friend for some 30 years, someone with whom I’ve shared many experiences, talked with every day at least once or twenty times, told each other every single bit of minutiae about our lives because it truly mattered, vacationed together, were in attendance at each other’s weddings, childbirth, divorces, etc.-you get the picture. We were each others’ “person”, our go-to gal for all and sundry.

And then one day, just seemingly out of fucking nowhere, ghosted. Never heard from again. Not answering any calls, texts, letters. Mutual friends don’t know anything, don’t want to get involved. Just……..nothing. Never again.

Come on people! Seriously? She didn’t  have the balls just even acknowledge that a friendship even existed? I’m losing my mind here. The not knowing why part is truly excruciating. Years go by and I still can’t figure it out. I’m still tortured. My husband pinpoints that first ghosting as the beginning of my mental and emotional deterioration.

There was absolutely nothing that I did, consciously, to cause this behavior on her part. I am only left with assuming something had been building up and she just couldn’t take it anymore. And I can accept that, even own it, but she can’t have the simplest decency to just tell me why, then goodbye? She is negating every single thing we’ve ever meant to each other. Her actions, or rather lack thereof, make every day of our decades of friendship one big soul-sucking lie. Really?

I can’t begin to explain the heartache being ghosted causes. It’s sad and hard enough to lose what feels like everything in one moment, but to spend the rest of my life not knowing why, or what, exactly happened the moment my friend decided, “Nope! No more! I’m done with her! She has only herself to blame! I don’t owe her anything!”

Uhhhhh, yes you do, bitch. Who are you, anyway? What a mockery you’ve made of everything. How can you live with yourself? And what kind of loser am I to have loved you and cherished our friendship all these years? And yet you say nothing. You are a ghost, an apparition, a daydream turned nightmare. Did you even exist?

This is not the same as friends drifting apart and eventually just not being in touch again. That’s normal, common, acceptable. People change, their lives evolve, they move on in a different direction. But the friendship did exist. And you can even send a Christmas card each year and feel sure it will be received warmly. But this ghosting business? This is unacceptable behavior, this is wrong on every level, this is war! You just don’t do this to a person.

But she did. It’s quite simply the most gutless, spineless, cowardly, and yes, even stunningly perverse, way to nullify another human being’s existence. I feel so betrayed. So misunderstood. So perplexed. So incredibly hurt. I feel just plain stupid. It was all a lie. I’m nobody to her and I never was.  I cannot and will not ever trust anyone again.

So I’m nobody. It’s all been just one big fucking whopper of a lie. I guess it’s fair to say that I really only exist in my own tortured mind.

I’m invisible. I don’t exist. I’m a ghost.

Random Thoughts: My Six Word Stories-Volume Two

Why bother to try? Never resolved.

Loneliness is underrated. I embrace it.

Never made a mistake? You’re mistaken.

A dropped nail is never found.

Becoming a parent means goodbye, you.

Children leave, never come back. Yay!

Children don’t leave; when’s it over?

Children leave or don’t. Never over.

Downsize. It’s all just junk now.

Children born. Children frolic. Children leave.

Work sucks. Retirement never soon enough.

Plan. Accept nothing goes as planned.

Don’t ask? Then answer always No.

Being bullied? So is your bully.

High road is best, but lonely.

Every moment is a teaching moment.

Time: No pause, FF, rewind. Wait.

Opposite of love? Hate? No, apathy.

Choosing to ghost someone is cowardly.

Children change everything….for the best.

Women: periods, pregnancy, menopause. Men: sex.

I dare you to define fairness.

We’re living in the Twilight Zone.

When is too much, too much?

Born, educated, married, parented, abandoned, died.

Overthinking is torture. Puerility much preferred.

Be naive; be obtuse; be happy.

Be complicated; be circumspect; be miserable.

If you could redo, would you?

Compassion

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I deserve to show myself the same compassion I show others. And I deserve to receive the same compassion I show others. It’s time to start practicing “No Blame, No Shame”. It’s time to love myself for who I am and accept myself for how I feel. I often say things to others that are hurtful and burdensome but I know that what I say comes from my own pain, not from malice towards others. I am crying out for help; I am asking to be heard. Not criticized. Not rejected. Not blamed. I am asking for patience. I am asking for relevance. I am asking for validation. I am asking for forgiveness. I am asking for unconditional love. I am asking for compassion. I am asking for grace. I am asking for peace.

Continue reading “Compassion”