It Hurts When Your Friends Never See Through Your Fake Smiles, Because We're All Really Dying Inside For Them to Notice.

When I was younger I remember watching TV and seeing those antidepressant commercials. I never understood depression. I thought that I definitely wouldn't get it. Of course, I think everyone goes through some sort of stage of denial where they don't believe anything of the sort could happen to them. I went to a public elementary school and my life seemed normal. I know I wasn't depressed then. That didn't happen until late last year. Then, in fifth grade, we moved and I ended up going to a private Christian school. There, I learned of Christ and became a Christian. That was a pretty hard year for me. I didn't quite fit in once the "new girl" phase wore off. Sixth grade was fine. Seventh was basically the same. And then…eighth grade came around.


It started off alright. Over the summer I had started to spend more and more time alone in my room. More time isolated from my family. More time watching movies in my room alone. Yet still, I didn't think anything of it. I had always been a little bit of a loner. I've been skating for seven years now and I think around there I'm known as the girl who never talks. I can easily take the prize for quietest and most reserved. So around when winter break started whenever I would be alone I would just feel sad. At night, lying in my bed, trying to sleep, I would just start crying for seemingly no reason. I felt like no one ever really understood me. And then I would hear all these depression stories about kids going through child abuse and parent issues and cancer and stuff and it made me feel awful for always feeling so down when it seems like there's no reason for me to be this way. And still, I couldn't get over the sadness. At this point, I had yet to recognize the symptoms as depression. So when break ended I went back to school, every morning dreading waking up more and more. Seemingly everything effected me. Hearing a song on the radio, a bad grade, a comment made by a friend, even if only sarcastic, a romantic movie, a TV show, a book. Anything sent me spiraling. 

Soon, the only place I could feel a little more comfortable was at the skating rink. And that never did it most of the time. If someone would get in my way a lot while I was trying to do a double or a footwork sequence, I would get extremely irritated and upset. You could always tell when I was annoyed at the rink. My fingers would clench in anger. 

Then I would go home and sit in my room, on the computer or reading. Basically all my life consisted of. I would cry myself to sleep every single night. And, to my horror, at my 15th birthday party sleepover, while we were supposed to be asleep, I found myself unable to stop sobbing. Thankfully the room was dark, two girls were asleep, and three were playing with someone's phone or iPod or something so I don't think anyone noticed. Which made me feel any worse. I ended up having to leave and go downstairs until I calmed down a bit, claiming that I had forgotten to take a pill.  

I was starting to get irritated with my lifestyle. I didn't like all the constant crazy mood swings. How I could be so happy one moment, and then in the blink of an eye I could be about to burst into tears. I was on the internet one day, researching some disease, and a link came up about depression. That's when it hit me. Depression. I was suffering from depression. That caused me to start another one of my major spirals. 

Finally, I decided I needed to do something about it. I started research self-recovery tactics online. There was no way I was admitting to depression to anyone. Probably the biggest mistake I've taken. A lot of sites suggested keeping myself busy. So one day in the weekend I scheduled my entire day, minute by minute, of doing some sort of activity. I was motivated to do something for the first time in a while. I just wanted this whole thing to be over. The activities did help, and kept my thoughts occupied for a good amount of time. I continued to busy myself for a while, and then stopped. I hadn't had a meltdown in a long time. 

Many websites said depression was unconquerable without professional treatment, or medication, but I had thought I conquered the unconquerable. But then a couple weeks later I fell back down. Much worse than before. Whenever I was upset I would struggle with the urge of actually hurting myself. Cutting! Another thing I had never ever thought I could resort to! 

Over a short period of time the temptation of self injury became more appealing. I had read about people who cut themselves, and most of them did it because it relieved them from stress and such. 

I started by only by scratching myself with things. Nothing that drew blood. Then I started digging my fingernails into my arms until there were marks there for days. Even at school, I would do it in direly emotional moments. And then came the day where I actually cut myself. I felt like I was in a daze. It was the razor from a scrapbook paper cutter that my mom had bought me years ago and had been taken out recently for the help of making my science fair display board. 

It was hardly cut, but once I did it, I just stared. I couldn't believe I had done it. I threw the razor at my science fair board and haven't tried it since. It scared the crap outa me that I would actually do it. 

Then came the chest problems. I started having chest pains whenever I would breathe in. I ended up in the hospital for them. That kind of threw me off guard, too. And then there's those meetings with the allergist (I am a sufferer of over fifty food allergies, no lie. Its absolutely dreadful.) and they take a diagnosis of what's been going on in your health life, asking a series of questions like: any sneezing, rashes, depression? Every time I've answered "no" to depression. I wasn't going to admit to anything I had done. Did they really think anyone would answer "yes"? 

I've been doing better lately, though. I've yet to admit this to a soul, and I'm not sure I really ever will, besides for this (of course, this is completely anonymous, though). 

I refuse to take medications. Every time I take medications it throws my stomach off (this is related somehow to the bazillion food allergies, according to my doctor), and I'm still afraid to admit this to friends and family. 

All I can say is that its amazing how much fake smiles work and how it hurts when your friends never see through them. 


iceskater7 iceskater7
3 Responses Mar 24, 2009

you sound so much like me. everything started around eighth grade, for me. by the end of 9th grade i stopped talking to my close friends because i didn't know what was going on and i saw how it made me so i didn't want whatever it was to hurt anyone else. i started locking myself in my room all day. i would sit around and read or do whatever on the Internet. I couldn't be around others and i couldn't be around myself. i would just collapse on my bed or on the floor and cry until it felt like everything hurt. i would only come out to get something to eat and take it back to my room. I spent the most time out of my room at night after everyone fell asleep. the summers are horrible. i would be in my room reading or just laying around because it was to much for me to move. my family would be outside laughing and talking in the pool or on the back porch and it killed me that i couldn't get myself to be like them. <br />
I didn't figure out that it has been depression all along, till this year. I'm in tenth grade now. Last semester i was going through one of my really bad bouts of depression and i ended up telling a friend that I've had depression for three years. i regret it sometimes but it was, i think, one of the best things i've done. this semester i finally told me mother that i have depression. I only told her because it has progressed to the point of thoughts of suicide. nothing was done about it till 4 weeks ago when, for the first time, i broke down in front of another friend and her mother. the next week i had my first counselling session. <br />
so far counselling is going well. I let my counselor know that i'm not into taking pills so she hasn't put me on anything. <br />
i completely understand not wanting to tell anyone and about fake smiling. sometime i just want to scream at my friends because they actually believe me when i smile and giggle and tell them i'm doing good. i'm pissed off just thinking about it. <br />
i dig my nails into my skin a lot. I haven cut myself but i certainly think about it frequently. i've even come close to overdosing. <br />
no one knows how bad the depression is and i truly believe no one, but those that suffer or have suffered from depression, can understand what it is like to go every day like this.<br />
just know you're not alone.<br />
you can talk anytime you need to. :)<br />
<br />

I agree with the above comment. You are very insightful with what you are feeling, which is light years ahead of where I was at your age. It took me until I was 25 to get help and until I was 30 until I really started to understand my depression and anxiety. I don't regret my life one bit because all of it got me this far, but I do think about what I could have done if I had gotten help sooner.

The question that I have for you is this one. How long are you going to live (If it can be call life) like that? Until you have a complete breakdown or until you are 40 years old and look back and realize that you have all those years because of your depression. I was young too and I wish I had talk to my parents about the way that I was feeling at the time but I never thought of it. Talk to them let your parents know how you feel you are their daughter they will understand and will help you get through this. Don't make the same mistake that I made.