My dad does this thing where if I complain about something he comes back with “Well at least you…”

“It’s so hard having Cody gone at school all the time.”

Well at least you know where he is, he’s not off in Afghanistan somewhere getting shot at.

“Addie won’t sleep, she’s up crying every night and I don’t know what to do.”

Well at least you have a baby, imagine all those moms with dead babies.

We all kind of hate it. I’m not sure if it’s because it’s true or because it hurts so bad to be told your pain and difficulties aren’t all that valid because someone out there has it worse.

I remember in high school a time that I took a lot of pills. A lot. I’m not entirely sure what my goal was in doing it, I was an angsty teenager desperate for attention. I remember arguing with my mom, her berating me for being so distant, when I told her about the pills. She got this look on her face, so disgusted with me. All she could say was “Why the hell would you do that?

There came a point in my relationship with my mom that I wouldn’t talk to her without a licensed therapist between us. She got us in with someone and when that someone came to the conclusion that something more needed to be done, medicinally,we never returned to the therapist again.

Obviously these are my memories of occasions, I’ve never really discussed them at length with either of my parents. And it’s not my intention to hurt them or paint them in a bad light. They were both raised so differently than one another and I realized a long time ago that there comes a point where I can’t blame my parents anymore because my life isn’t what I expected. They both did the best they knew how with the anomaly that was me.

When I was younger I could mask the pain I’m feeling now with alcohol, drugs and boys. I still remember the first time I had to face my real feelings head on without the perceived safety of reckless behavior.

It was like running full force into a brick wall.

That is how it still feels when I come up against this.

There’s no easy way to cover up this kind of pain and sadness. There’s no bandaid for depression. Alcohol and drugs were crutches for me, they held me above the misery long enough to get through another day.

When it comes to depression there’s only a very long, ugly, dark and uncertain road back to a place you think you remember.

I don’t know why this disease chose me. I don’t know how bad mine is compared to every one else’s but I don’t really care.

I hurt right now. And there’s no quick and easy way out of it that won’t cause pain to either myself or those around me.

The only way is through.

23 weeks.

And I’m fighting like hell to make it.

Comments

  1. Keep fighting, Casey. You will make it through.

  2. You keep fighting my friend. You have so many beautiful things to fight for. We’re all out here rooting for you to get through.

  3. if it makes u feel any better, i complain about my Lover being away in afghanistan getting shot at and my dad and mom BOTH fire back with, “at least he’s not dead.”

    so it doesn’t matter what the situation is. it’s a parental thing. u can’t win.

  4. I wish I was there with you. But you know I’m here, right? always with you. Always thinking of you. Always have time for you.

    I love you like a sister. You’re an amazing, wonderful person and you’re going to get through this tough time. I know it. I KNOW IT.

  5. I know there’s nothing to say that will make you magically better, because I’ve been there. But please know that you are loved and appreciated, and that your writing has helped ease some of my pain. Sending lots of positive thoughts your way.

  6. I think you could substitue all sorts of behaviors for the alcohol, drugs, and boys. I use eating disordered behaviors. It is crappy, but you are right, the only way to get past this is through.

    Thank you for your honesty. It helps to know we aren’t alone in our struggles.

  7. I hear you! I am dealing with this at the moment. I tried to explain it to my husband yesterday, but I think to him it just sounds like an excuse for my “behavior”. I’m hoping a counselor can explain it to him so he knows I am not choosing to be this way.

  8. Keep pressing through my friend. You can do this!

  9. Keep on with the tough fight! If there is any way I can help, let me know. I’ll take you out to lunch (or whatever)! I’m a local blog follower.

  10. mommabird2345 says:

    You can do it. You are stronger than you think.

  11. You’re doing a great job, Casey. Pregnancy and postpartum are the most difficult times for women living with depression. Give yourself permission to relax and take time for yourself whenever you need it. You will make it through.

  12. Thank you. Right now, I am smack in the middle of another round in the HELL that is cyclic depression. I don’t know which way is up – and worse, I don’t know that I care. It annoys me that I can recognize that and yet, not just “fix it.” Thank you for being able to put into words the feelings/thoughts in my head – even if just a fraction of them. It helps to know I’m not the only one – and at the same time, makes me wish there was a way I could ease your pain. The best I can do is pray that knowing that you give me hope helps, even if just a little.

    I will get through this – my children deserve so much better than what I am able to do right now…all I need to do is get to tomorrow. One day at a time…

  13. I love that picture, but it breaks my heart – it says so much right now and I just want to wrap my arms around you and tell you it will be ok. (sadly, my arms can’t reach that far, but know that in my head I totally am hugging you).

    You’ll get through…we’ll walk with you.

    Oh, and those parent comments? Pretty universal I think 🙂

  14. Keep fighting, keep pushing through. Sending you tons of positive thoughts and love.

  15. you’re right … the only way is through. i’m here, silently cheering you on & fervently praying for you and your family.

  16. For years I have been diagnosed as suffering from manic depression. I prefer to think of is surviving through, rather than suffering from.

    We each carry scars from the decisions we have made or have been made for us. Rarely can we go back and undo those actions.

    So, I use the manic fits to get things done, like cleaning the house, writing the un-great non-american novel, etc. Put the energy to use and take pride in conquering the symptom, until I can identify and change the source. Since doing this for the last few years, I find the melancholy much less frequent, much less severe and the manic ‘spins of my mind’ slower, more sensible and easier to focus through.

    Daniel

  17. Casey..you are an amazing one-tough-cookie. You will make it through–we are sending you added strength and love…

  18. You’re so generous with others. Be generous with yourself. You deserve it.

  19. I hear you. I can’t completely understand because it doesn’t affect me personally, but it affects my son. He was diagnosed 18 mos. ago. “Play therapy” and meds didn’t work, so we stopped. We’re taking it one day at a time…and we are taking it very seriously…Please continue to reach out for help and know you are not alone. We are all here, in one way or another. And we are cheering you on…one day at a time…{{{HUGS}}}

  20. You’ve got this. Even when you don’t think you do. And, especially then, you’ve got us. Want to make you a pie.

  21. One foot in front of the other, until it starts to get better. I know this pain. I know the words, it will get better, doesn’t help right now. But I know it will. I will hope for you that this passes quickly.

    Be gentle with yourself friend. Let other people help. Much love and hugs to you Casey.

  22. Oh, sweetie. So sorry. You deserve all the best.

  23. Keep going, you are never, ever alone, as much as it feels that way.

  24. Your pain and difficulties are valid and true. Other people’s pain and difficulties are theirs, but they don’t make yours any less.

    Keep struggling, keep putting one foot in front of the other, but look up ahead once in a while and you will see all the people who love you standing with their arms reaching out to you. You are not alone.

  25. I saw a doctor a year or so ago that told me the way to “get over” my depression was to think of women in worse circumstances. And then she handed me a bunch of samples of antidepressants. Obviously, she knows NOTHING about depression.

    I was at a women’s conference a couple months ago and the woman who was speaking had her own trials in life that were gut-wrenchingly difficult to deal with. Anyway, one of the things she said when she came across someone who said to her, “Well, my problems aren’t all that bad compared to yours”, she said pain is pain is pain.

    Even though your circumstances may seem less difficult than someone else’s, you’re still in pain and it doesn’t matter if someone has more or someone has less, you still have pain.

    I hate the “well at least” scenarios as well, and there’s no way that they help. Those “well at least” statements are true, yes, but your pain is VERY valid and you don’t need to have a husband in Afghanistan or a dead child to be allowed to be in pain.

    I’m blabbering too much here, but I wanted to say thank you for writing what you do, Casey. I’m also pregnant and suffering from deep dark depression and your posts make me feel not so alone in my struggles.

    xoxo

  26. Sherry Lane says:

    I wish I had the magical gift with words that you have, to help you through this battle, like you have helped me. You have helped all of us with this depression struggle, and we are all here for you now. Kelp fighting Casey, there are far more people out there who need you too. And when it is us that is having a bad day, we come here to you, to help us out of it. As you have said in the past, you are not alone. Xoxoxo. <3

  27. Thinking about you.

  28. Your dad sounds like my dad. I hear, “Did you learn something?” and, “Do you want it or do you need it?” all the time.
    I read your words, and I swear you stole them from my head.
    I thought I was just doing what college students were supposed to do- partying, drinking, boys… Then I fell in love, started a family, moved to Germany, and when life slowed down around and fell completely into place, the sadness and the pain and the anger would seep through the cracks of my soul and whisper dark thoughts.
    The only is through. The only way is to fight. It’s ok to stumbled and hurt and cry. It’s ok to fall.
    There’s someone there waiting to help you up, waiting to cheer you on, and on the hard days, there’s someone there to give stern instruction to “get up!” if you need it.
    Keep fighting, Mama. Keep fighting.
    You’re stronger than you think. Dig deeper. Hold on tighter.

  29. “When it comes to depression there’s only a very long, ugly, dark and uncertain road back to a place you think you remember.”

    I don’t think anyone has ever said it in a way that resonated more with me. Yes, yes, a thousand times yes.

    This breaks my heart, Casey. Know that you’re not alone and that we’re ALL here willing to help, listen, love, back off whenever you need or want.

    Sending much love. <3

  30. The best I can do is cheer you on from the sidelines. I’m cheering.

  31. One foot in front of the other. Breathe in, breathe out. Do not look down the road, it will come whether you look or not. Focus only now now and what would make you need right now.

    Hugs!

    Know that we love you and keep us posted.

    Lee

  32. Lots of love and prayers.

  33. I like how you write through it, too.

  34. Hang in there. You are not alone. This disease hits many of us and we need eachother to help get us out. Unfortunately only those with depression know how bad it is. I know, I am here. Keep fighting, you will make it.

  35. There is nothing I can say to take away your pain, but I had to say something to let you know I’m thinking of you.

    So…something.

  36. My homey, if I had a magic wand, I would wave that thang around & make it all better. I’m not even going to attempt to give you advice cause I don’t know firsthand what it feels like but I hope that **** goes away super soon. Love you. xoxo

  37. I hope things get better soon!

  38. we’re here. we’re all here. all knowing you can push through. but here for you when you think you can’t.

  39. Thinking of you and hoping brighter days will be here soon. xoxo

  40. You can do it.

  41. I have been depressed. I wasn’t debilitiated. Not from depression. If you want to talk about crippling anxiety, I’m your girl. 😉

    It was such a hard place to be in. To know that so much existed in your head or over some stupid chemical imbalance and while you had every reason in the world to be perfectly functioning and happy–you weren’t.

    I’m sorry you were in a situation where your Dad trivialized your pain. I really hate when people do that. I find women to be more guilty of that then men.

    I hope better days are coming quick.

  42. Fight like hell. And know that I am here wanting you to make it (and offering assistance if there is anything I can do).

  43. Praying for you, hoping things get better! You are looking great, by the way, too!

  44. Hi Casey, I’ve been thinking about you and praying for you. The road you are on is not easy.

  45. Amy in StL says:

    Okay, a) You are absolutely adorable in that photo. I know that isn’t what you were going for; but you are. b) You are the main reason that I felt okay asking for medication to treat my depression. I was so afraid because I had not had luck in the past with medication; but I knew that I was sinking deeper every day. (Mainly because I spent time each day at work crying in the bathroom.) You made me realize that getting help doesn’t mean I’m weak or there’s anything wrong with me; it just means I need help. I was surprised that my boyfriend was supportive of my decision too and didn’t run away when I told him I was getting pharmaceutical help. Thanks Casey, I’m pulling for you to surface soon.

  46. Casey, I never say anything for fear of not saying the *right thing* (cuz we all want to be The One that says the *right thing*.), if there is such a thing given the circumstances. I’ve battled a very mild form of this since preteendom. The only thing I have to offer you is encouragement and cliches. “It always gets better.” “You’re not in it alone.” Nothing, in my recollection, made it easier. It’s a constant feeling of being misunderstood, cast aside as crazy, uncomfortable in your own skin. I feel for you because you’re pregnant in the midst of it all. Pirate hormones, ahoy!

    But, Casey, it does get better. You’re not in it alone. And we all love you. You’re beautiful. Your family is beautiful. Please keep going. I know you can do it.

  47. Keep beating your head into that brick wall, babe.

    Eventually it will come tumbling down, and your head is big and tough, I know this to be true, so maybe a goose egg on it? You will break it down, babe.

    xoxo

  48. I wish I could say something to make it all better. Just know that we are all pulling for you. Keep up the good fight.

  49. I admire your courage in speaking out, and speaking up, about your struggles with depression. It is hard when you’re in the middle of it to remember that there is any way out.
    I’m a believer of the fact that just because someone has it worse than you do doesn’t diminish how bad it is for you…and it’s always hard to hear other people try and make that comparison (your dad for example).
    Keep fighting – and we’ll keep supporting you through this and everything!

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