Me: I’m a jackass who is staying home tonight.
Friend: What?! Why??
Friend: We can come pick you up if you don’t want to drive.
Me: I just am anti-social. And depressed. So I invited the hilsts over.
Friend: I see.
Friend: Well, have a good night with them.
Me: I promise it’s not a conspiracy. I really 100% am depressed and needed not to go. And I knew they couldn’t go either. And i thought i could get drunk off my ass alone, or i could see if they would come over.
No response from friend.
Maybe I’m reading too much into this, but it seems like people often get pissed at me when I make good choices. And then I want to put my head through a wall.
My depression is fairly well-documented here on the blog, and although it’s been significantly improved this semester, I had a rough day Saturday.The Christmas party was actually the third event that day that I decided not to attend, because I’m messed up in my brain.
The friend’s response was disappointing because I was honest with her about why I wasn’t going, and it seemed like she either thought I was lying or didn’t approve of my reason as good enough.
Sometimes I think the problem is that I don’t act the same way our other friend acted when she was struggling with depression… like there’s some standard of behavior that’s expected of a depressed woman. She ought to cry publicly. She ought to ask people to come over and drag her out of bed. She ought to take some pills. She ought to… be other than what I am.
I don’t talk. I don’t want anyone to come over and drag me out into the world. In all honesty, I think that would probably make it worse. I don’t see a doctor, because I don’t believe it’s something I should be medicating. I did get myself a Stephen Minister for awhile, but it didn’t help much. In fact, the only thing I do is lay on the couch watching Star Trek, drinking too much wine, or, occasionally, I’ll call Ashly or Lori. Sometimes I work out a lot when I’m depressed.
So, l if I could tell friend anything, here’s what it would be:
When I don’t attend events, it isn’t commentary on you or the other people who attend; I’m just making the best choices I know how to make, and your snark is just about the most unhelpful thing you could throw my way on a night like that one.
After Matt and Ashly left, I checked my phone to see if you’d responded to my promise that it wasn’t a conspiracy… but you hadn’t. That made me stay up late, worrying about what to do to fix things with you. Should I call you? Should I try to explain myself?
In my depressed state, I decided it was best to write a blog post about it, forgive you, and move on.
Dear Friends (who are never quite satisfied with me),
I have the dark, inaccessible, brooding personality of a writer. I sometimes stay home when there is a perfectly good party I could attend. You don’t have to understand why I do that in order to be friend, although it couldn’t hurt the friendship.
I hardly ever trust anyone enough to satisfy their desire to be trusted… while I can appreciate your friendship on a casual level, the manner and the timing of your displays of dissatisfaction reinforce my decision not to hang out with you when I’m depressed.
And one more:
Dear Ashly, Lori, and a few others,
Thanks for letting me be, and for showing up when I need you.