The last thing a mother would want is a child who struggles with depression.
Being diagnosed at only 17, and having to struggle with the everyday issues that comes with woman hormones, peer pressure, our quick pace of life, school, work and being gay, has been a challenge not only for her, but for the entire family also.
The worst feeling in the world is not knowing, what we will be waking up to, or coming home to. The constant mood changes, sadness, and anger, has taken a toll on our family. We live in fear and wonder 24 hours a day. Our focus and energy have been absorbed with our daughter even when we are not at home. Never being able to break away from the emotions and the fear, has been consuming and draining.
This is our story:
We have experienced more than 10 melt downs in 18 months of illness. How scary can this be? I will give you the best explanation possible of what we have seen in our home.
A melt down in my home is best described as losing touch of all reality: Seeing her jump out of our moving car, to attacking her step father physically, to screaming and shaking like there is no tomorrow because she lost her keys to her car. Although these melt downs are scary, and unbelievably shocking, they do not hurt as much as the withdrawnness that comes after a lash out.
“There is no point treating a depressed person as though she were just feeling sad, saying, ‘There now, hang on, you’ll get over it.’ Sadness is more or less like a head cold- with patience, it passes. Depression is like cancer.”
― Barbara Kingsolver,
Total seclusion and isolation for days, vomiting when she moves or eats, never coming out of her room, not answering phone calls or text messages for days, and not even turning on a tv or radio or computer. I’ve seen myself leave work in the middle of the afternoon, with visions of my daughter dead in her bed, thus, sitting through the longest bus and metro ride in my own excruciating torment. This is the part of depression that hurts everyone. The suffering she is going through, and not being able to do or say the right things to take away her pain. All she wants is to be left alone. All you want is for her NOT to be left alone. So you do like any other loving parent does: You try and include her for meals, outings, family trips and shopping sprees. You slip a note under her door to let her know she is loved. You beg, plead, cry and scream to be heard, but you can’t cross that line. Each time, that line gets thinner. But each night you thank God that she is still alive, even in her pain…
….then you ask him to protect her and take away that pain, and give her strength get through it.
To get us through all these events, and to help deal with the emotional trauma, we have regular family meetings either with or without our daughter. We brain storm, and suggest, but most of all, we show love and support while dealing with this together. We get friends and extended family involved, but we choose them wisely, and we look up to God to guide us with the proper words and patience.
It has been 2 weeks that we have noticed a sincere change in behavior. As happy as I am that she is stable for the moment, we never take anything for granted. We sit, wait, and wonder, when it will happen again…….We wonder if this happy time is the beginning of a new life or the end of her unhappy life…………………..
Anonymous writer in fear of being discovered by her daughter.
“That is all I want in life: for this pain to seem purposeful.”
― Elizabeth Wurtzel, Prozac Nation