To the Guy Who Dumped Me Because of My Depression:
I’m better now. I know it was probably scary for you that night when I showed up at your doorstep covered in cuts. I was scared too.
It was so scary that night, when I kept cutting and cutting and cutting. I don’t know where it came from, or why it happened. I just woke up earlier that week and felt the depression lurking behind me. I’d distract myself with work, school, music, and Netflix, but it was still there waiting for me when I had a moment to myself. Every night I’d close my eyes to go to sleep and see it swallow me up in the darkness. I had no answers about my future, my present, or past. All I could think of is every shitty thing I’ve ever done, every person who I felt secretly hated me, and how no matter how hard I’d try, I couldn’t stay happy. The depression always found me eventually.
I was scared. So scared to open up and talk about this weight I felt on my shoulders. You were the only person around who really seemed to care. Despite months of trying to keep you at arm’s length, I ended up letting you in my heart. And I really didn’t want it broken.
I only mentioned this to you once, in a very short and dismissive manner, but I was in a couple of serious relationships before you. One of them lasted two years, and I found out he cheated on me during those two years while I was seeing you. I didn’t want it to affect us getting to know each other, but it did. I was still very upset about my ex cheating on me and was struggling to trust others, as well as myself. And in a lot of ways, I felt so worthless. I wasn’t ready to believe in kindness again. I wasn’t ready for you.
When I told you about my depression that night, and said: “You don’t have to say anything…I know this is a lot to lay on a person and I don’t expect you to fix it or anything…and I totally understand if you don’t wanna see me anymore…but I just need someone to listen and accept me despite it.” I meant it. I don’t blame you for telling me days later that you just couldn’t do it. Sometimes I feel like I can’t do it either, honestly, but I have to. And I’ll be stronger for it. I know how stressful and heartbreaking it can be to watch someone you care about hurt so badly. It’s a terrible helpless feeling, and I understand not wanting to sign up for that. But I hope one day you will love someone enough to be willing to do that for them, because it is one of the most rewarding and life-changing things you can do—to bring someone hope.
My depression is my burden to bare, and I’m sorry if I made you feel overwhelmed and stressed because of it. But I’m not sorry I told you about it. I put my heart on the line, I took a chance, and it was a really hard thing to do. And I did it because I believed in you, I trusted you, which wasn’t a mistake. I still think you are a great person, and I’m glad I at least got a shot with you. The thing is, while I will always be grateful that you held me that night, as I willed myself not to cry in your arms, I will admit that it wasn’t a hard thing for you to do. The hard part comes after, in the morning when you realize that last night will not be the only night filled with tough conversations and tight hugs. And that’s the part that so many people seem to struggle with…every guy I’ve met seems to want to be my knight in shinning armor until they realize that this battle isn’t a one time deal. So I’m glad you were honest and told me you couldn’t do it. I’m glad you left instead of whispering in my ear that you wouldn’t hurt me.
There are people out there who love me in spite of the depression. They pick me up each time and let me know I’m loved even when I don’t love myself. They keep me going, because I know they will always be there on the other side, when the depression is gone and my smile is back and things are easier. Their love has no mental health conditions, and their opinion of my never wavers based off of my depression. They are my friends and family and partner, and they are the ones I should have gone to that night when I knocked on your door.
It’s easy to want that significant person in your life to be the one that you lean on, and it’s hard to tell the people you’ve known the longest that you’re struggling again. Thank you for teaching me that I don’t need a knight in shining armor, and that the ones who will fight for me the hardest are the ones who have always been by my side.
Wishing You the Best,