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Mental Health

Your Friends Need To Know You Care

It’s rather disparaging to me how people will say that they would never ignore the signs of their loved ones and friends being depressed, and yet how many of them seem shocked when their loved ones and friends end up taking their own lives.

I was thirteen when my uncle took his own life. He would take his meds, feel better, and then decide he didn’t need to take his medications any more. I guess, it got to a point where he just couldn’t take it anymore and needed to escape.

He did confide in me, that the last letter that I sent him was one of the few personal letters he received in months. He wanted to paint full time, and I don’t know if he always particularly enjoyed his job as an art teacher. Yet through his pain he encouraged me follow after my dreams relentlessly because he said nothing else would make me happy, he also encouraged me to stay away from the work force for as long as I could because it tends to stuck the life out of you. I guess he knew that I was a creative soul like him that would feel trapped in doing anything else than my heart’s desire, and he was right.

Aside from writing, photography, and creating – there’s really been nothing in this world that I have enjoyed doing for work. I’ve worked in a nursing home, I’ve worked retail, and I’ve worked food service. None of it has been easy. Customers aren’t always right and sometimes they are downright impossible, entitled, and rude.

When I fall into dark slumps and moments, I find that I have to reach out. Even then, people aren’t always receptive.

I have read many a moment saying to check on with your strong friends, but people always seem to forget me.

I know that I am loved, I know that people do care; but I need more reassurance and more love than people are often willing to give. I need people to be loud in their acceptance of me because on the dark days, it is easy for my brain to convince me that either people hate me or they don’t even care enough to hate me. It’s exhausting.

We all need people, sometimes, but when I ask for help I am told that I am strong or that I’m smart and I will figure it out. I always do, but I also think that it should be okay for strong people to ask for help. If we all need someone to rely on, people need to be there for us.

It is hard for me to ask for help in the first place because a) don’t like asking for help and would rather do it myself, b) don’t want to burden anyone with my problems, and c) know how disappointing people can be.

It gets exhausting being the one that always helps and encourages others when you feel no one is ever there for you. So can we all practice being better friends? Friends may not be therapists, sure, but friends should be able to know you love them without questioning it and themselves.

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