I am 21 and I struggle with Depression
Have you ever heard the saying, "everyone is fighting a battle you know nothing about"? Well, it's true. And I'm about to share my battle with you…
A few weeks ago, I was admitted to the hospital. I spent three long days in the psychiatric unit. I had no connections to the outside world. I wasn't allowed to have my phone, see my family for more than an hour a day, or even use a plastic knife at meals. It felt like prison but there was some good that came out of it. It made me want to share my story and to hopefully help others out there who are going through something similar.
So, you're probably wondering why I was even there. I have suffered a long battle with depression since my sophomore year of high school. No one knew. Not my parents, my siblings, friends, doctor, no one. I struggled alone and put on a brave face for the world for four years before I decided to get help. Even after my doctor officially diagnosed me with depression and started me on medications, no one knew. No one except my doctor, my parents, and my boyfriend. I went about my life and tried my absolute hardest to face the world everyday even though all I wanted to do was lay in bed and hide in the darkness by myself. As time went on, I began to give up. I gave in to the voice telling me to stay in my room and cry until I fell asleep. When I gave in, things became much harder which I didn't think was possible. When I stopped going out, my friends quickly faded away. No one called to hang out, no one texted to just say 'what's up?'. Let me tell you that there is no worse feeling in the world than feeling alone…until you realize it isn't just a feeling. It's real. I no longer had any friends. To this day, I still don't. I don't blame anyone but this is where that saying I mentioned before comes in. "Everyone is fighting a battle you know nothing about". When someone abruptly stops making efforts to hang out or simply talk to you, ASK IF THEY'RE OKAY. Be there for them if they're not. Don't assume. Don't assume they're mad at you or don't care about you. They could just be going through something that you knew nothing about. So please, don't jump to conclusions so quickly.
And to the people going through a similar situation as me, don't give in. Stay as close as you can to your friends no matter what the voice inside you head is saying. Don't make the same mistake that I did. Having to live my life with no friends is part of the reason I had reached my breaking point and hit rock bottom. Having to sit at home and watch snapchat stories or look at pictures on Instagram of your old friends having fun without you is absolutely heartbreaking. Going to class and seeing everyone walking next to their friends, smiling and laughing, just reminds you that you don't have any. And you continue to walk alone…everywhere…everyday. And then before you know it, you find yourself bawling on your bedroom floor for hours on end day after day. At least that's what happened to me. And then one day I decided I didn't want to deal with it anymore. The only thought that filled my head was that no one would even notice or care if I were gone. So, I did my research, I made my plan, and I made my decision. I was going to overdose on my medication and end it all. I was ready. I was ready to end my pain, the loneliness, the darkness that lived inside of me, and the constant suffering. But…I didn't. With all the strength I had left inside of me, I stopped myself. Tears streaming down my face, I picked up the phone instead. I called my mom who rushed to my apartment and took me straight to the emergency room. They then transported me to the hospital where I was required to stay for 72 hours with someone constantly watching over me.
When I got out, I felt a little better but I still faced the fact that no one had any idea what had happened. I just went back to my normal routine like nothing ever happened. And that's when I decided I wanted to share my story here. I don't want to pretend like nothing happened because it did. I don't expect sympathy or attention because of it but I want to be a voice for those who are too afraid to speak up, just like I was. I just hope that you can take away one simple message from all of this. Always be kind. And before you decide that that girl cares too much about what others think or that boy seems anti-social, just remember…they could be fighting a battle you know nothing about.
If you enjoyed Kelsey Duro’s story, send a bit of encouragement in the comments section below or share this story with others.