I feel like my brain is covered in a creeping darkness that’s consuming my thoughts and emotions. I can’t help but think there’s something physically wrong with my brain that’s causing such a bombardment of negative thoughts and overwhelming feelings. I imagine leech-like creatures slithering around my brain, devouring normal thoughts and shitting out thoughts of death.
I know the problem really is my brain itself, its connections and associations, but that doesn’t make it any easier to deal with. I can’t imagine living for 40 more years in this kind of life. I can’t even imagine living one more year in this kind of life, realistically. I am still alive, so obviously I make it through these times, though I’m not sure how. I suppose I just survive the intense times, because I sure as hell don’t feel alive most of the time.
It’s times like this I wish I knew how to reformat my brain. My thoughts are so corrupted with darkness that I can’t see anything else. I feel trapped in my mind and start feeling a clammy desperation to get out of it, at any cost. It gets to a point where I genuinely feel that a lobotomy would be a good idea or I start wondering if it’s possible to sign up for electroconvulsive therapy. I mean, as barbaric as those procedures might be, they seem like reasonable risks to me if it means a chance to exist as a person without these thoughts.
When it gets really bad, really out of control, the only prospect for relief seems to be to stop my brain from working at all. I’ll be driving along, not even upset, and think “It’d be such a relief to just put a bullet in the center of this brain and be done with it.” I guess it’s no different than putting a suffering animal out of its misery; I suppose it must be instinctual – some kind of detached compassion.
I’ve been thinking a lot about the term “mentally ill”. That term has so many negative and unpleasant connotations and is ingrained into our collective consciousness as an explanation for anyone whose thoughts are uncontrollable. The term “mental disorder” is far more accurate and far less stigmatizing, but it’s still pointing out that there’s something noticeably wrong with me and anyone else with similar problems.
The phrase “mentally ill” reminds me of the “get over it” and “just stop feeling that way” statements people make. I think it’s highly probable that the person who coined the phrase “mentally ill” simply had no idea what kind of negative impact that term would have on people who are unwilling members of that group. On the other hand, it’s also likely that s/he wouldn’t even care about how such a term might affect people. I can imagine a self-important psychiatrist hearing a complaint about the term and saying coldly, “Get over it.”
It’s so cut & dry to those people, though, because there’s no way they could understand what it’s like to live like this. To those people, everyone else should to be pushed into the “mentally ill” category – swept away, out of sight and out of mind – because it’s easier for them.
I can’t blame them, though. I don’t even want to be around me most of the time. It’s a drag, it’s annoying, it’s repetitive, and it’s pointless. They get to escape, at least. Meanwhile, every one of my experiences is tainted with thoughts and feelings that make my entire life darker than it might otherwise be.
Sometimes I wonder when I’ll stop surviving. I wonder if one day I’ll just give up and stop trying to make it through the next moment. I wonder if I’ll just get too tired to take it anymore? Honestly, the worst part is knowing it will never end. That makes everything harder to bear, because I just feel so hopeless. I’ve had to accept the reality that my entire life will be an endless fight against myself just to stay alive another day.
I laugh and scoff at the phrase, “suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem”. Clearly, whoever said that was a person who didn’t wake up each morning with the thought, “I wish I’d die.” It’s not a temporary problem if one’s brain, one’s thoughts and feelings, one’s entire self exists in a constant state of internal conflict. It’s not temporary if I know I’m going to wake up tomorrow and next week and ten years from now with these exact thoughts.