I'm Terrified Of Sinking Back Into The Depression That I Never Truly Escaped, Only Eluded Momentarily...

A few years ago depression hit me hard. I never really knew what the word "depression" meant before then and foolishly believed it was something that was a matter of choice, how we choose to see the world and ourselves. Retreating into myself, my world grew smaller and smaller. I lost contact with almost all my friends because I lost interest in social interaction and because I was acutely conscious of dragging other people down by confiding how I felt so ended up bottling everything up. This retreat and regression ultimately ended up with me living the life of a hermit: I spent a whole year of my life indoors as I grew increasingly agoraphobic, afraid to be seen and scorned by others. I existed off my life savings, had shopping delivered to my door, and relied on exasperated relatives to help me avoid the outside world. The only time I left the house further than the trash can outside the door (which I would only do at night) was when I was taken to hospital after a relative found me passed out after an overdose.

Although I would often be bombarded by thoughts of suicide, knowing that I came so close to death terrified me and was the shock I needed to try and put my life back on track. Amazingly, after a year of minimal interaction walled up in my home, with the encouragement of family I applied for a job and went to an interview. It was a basic job demanding no skills but it would help me escape from the prison I'd made for myself and force me to interact and get outside of my own head. It was terrifying to face the public and my first few days went badly as my fear came across to others as poor attitude. It was hard to go through all those scary feelings and not be able to explain to others why I found it all so hard. I didn't want anyone to know that I'd been living the way I had, and was scared to be judged for being depressed. I made up a past for myself to cover my year in limbo. Gradually I found it less frightening to feel so visible to others and through hard work I progressed and was pushed towards management. I say "pushed" because this is when it started to go wrong for me again. I instinctively dug my heels in and sabotaged my own development because I felt like a fraud, that everyone would discover that I'm just this insecure, insignificant, emotionally unstable mess. The people that wanted so much for me then became resentful that I apparently "threw it all away" and started to switch the limelight to others who were more than keen to take my place. Achieving helped me feel that I had conquered my depression, made me feel strong and purposeful, but now I feel abandoned to myself again, irrelevant, ignored, an annoyance at best. And I did it to myself.

I find it hard to care about work now. It's a huge effort to get through each work day without being emotional, whether sad or angry at nothing in particular. Even though inside I'm brimming with emotion and angsty feelings, externally I must seem to be very cold and detached as, again, I begin the retreat inwards. I feel out of place, like I don't belong anywhere in this world. I find it hard to relate to people because they can see a future that I can't. I hate myself. My mind seems to continually anticipate what bad things people are thinking or saying about me as my depression inevitably affects how I come across to people. I care far too much, and always have, about what other people think of me. I'm starting to get the suicidal thoughts again which scares me because it doesn't feel like it's coming from me, more like I'm being ambushed by these vivid images at random times when I'm not thinking of anything in particular. I could be standing at the bus stop after a comparatively decent day and suddenly feel the urge to run into the road in front of the next car or be by the tracks at the train station and feel like I have to hold onto someone or something because the pull to jump is so overwhelming. It's a kind of vertigo, a dizzying gravitational pull towards the inevitable.

There's no real rhyme or reason to my train of thought here, but I just feel I have to confess how I really feel because it is so very hard to continually pretend to be OK. I just don't see a future for me anymore. I have lost all ambition, all ability to "connect" with people. What else is left?
ellesbelles ellesbelles
26-30, F
4 Responses Oct 11, 2010

I went through the same things,although I don't have suicidal thoughts.I will tell you what made me realise that staying inside was not what I wanted.The past summer I went vacation with my parents.It was 15th of August, a great day for Christians and we were supposed to go to church.But I couldn't get up from bed, all I wanted was to sleep and sleep and sleep all day and when I got up early in the morning I ended up sick,vomiting and shuddering like a leaf. That day my parents looked so sad that I felt guilty,so I got up from bed,got ready and went to church.Then I sat for a while with no problem,when it all came back to me again.So I started sweating and shuddering again and my father took me out of there.We started walking back home,I got there and my dad left to go back to the church.And I tell you what.While I was lying there on the bed,listening from the speakers the sound of the priest talking about love and happiness,I thought "what am I doing?everybody is there,my parents are there,what am I doing here?".So I stood up,got out of the house and started walking towards the church again.I was afraid but I said to myself "don't be afraid,it's hard the first time,but the second it will be easier".So I went to my parents,and when they saw me there their eyes were glowing with joy.I told them what had happened inside me and they helped me so much.I hope it works out with you too,because it is so sad to feel depressed when there are so many wonderful things to do out there...

Your life can still be what you choose it to be. I was and in certain way's exactly like you. What And101 told you is correct. I almost waited too long before I checked myself into the hospital to get help. I then also took an outside job. But when ask about leadership I told them upfront that I was not interseted. I didnot want to push thing's. Is it easy ? of course not, but sitting here inside was also making it worse. I may have to deal with this the rest of my life, I dont know. I can tell you this, get the help you need for that is a starting point. Yes you will have bad day's just as I do but I also have good day's and I focus on them. But you have to choose not to give in. But get the help you need first to get you started. I now take mood medication and see a theripist once a week. But I had to take the first step. Good luck and God bless.

You describe depression perfectly. I felt very much the same way and had all the same struggles in the mid 90s. I cant give you any advice. I do hope you are seeking professional help I just wanted to let you know that you are not as alone as you feel. Don't give up hope, as long as you are alive there is always hope, even if you don't feel it. As I said I was there, living that same nightmare in my mid 20s and there was nothing worse. It took a long time, but things did slowly get better. I still struggle from time to time, but nothing like I did. If you ever want to talk just drop me a line.

There is your whole life ahead, different from the one you are living through now, different from the feelings you are facing. A better life, one you will want to make last a long, long time. But you cannot do it alone - you need some guidance and assistance to help you get from one place to the other. Seek help now. Do not wait. Call your therapist, counselor, clergy, or family. You need some help from people physically close to you today.