I don’t know much about depression or suicide. I have no background that makes me an expert in either.
What I do know, after ten years of a “job” that has brought thousands of people into my life who are vulnerable, beaten-down, sad, wistful, envious, searching, lost, thousands of people who, whether it’s in my living room in front of 10 or at a theater in front of 700, courageously and beautifully share themselves with complete strangers, is that you’re not alone.
- Are you constantly sapped of energy?
- Do you sink into a deep sadness that feels impossible to climb out of?
- Have you lost yourself over the years?
- Do you say yes to everyone but yourself?
- Do you feel your relationships are surface-level, that there’s not a lot of substance to them?
- Are you stuck in a rut?
- Are you lonely?
- Are all your friends getting married, having babies, moving to the suburbs and you feel left behind?
- Have you done everything you’re supposed to do – the job, the condo, the schooling, the significant other – but still feel something is amiss?
- Do you feel bad about yourself because of debt, weight, alcoholism, age, lack of a romantic partner?
- Are you often being someone other than yourself?
- Do you struggle to answer “What am I passionate about?” “What do I want to do?”
- Are you holding onto past lows, disappointment, frustration?
- Do you wish you had more confidence in yourself?
- Are you tired of being fearful or of feeling like you’re sitting on the sidelines watching life pass you by?
- Do you want to be doing something else professionally?
- Do you find yourself constantly being envious of others’ lives?
- Are you ready for change?
- Are you hard-pressed to think of anything you’re good at?
- Do you feel like you’re treading water, constantly moving but never getting anywhere?
You’re not alone in feeling the way you do. You’re not alone in your struggles.
And you don’t have to be alone in your journey.
You’re not “bothering” someone if you reach out. They’re not “too busy” to take a moment for you. There’s always someone who will listen. Who wants to listen.
Share your voice. Share your struggle. Share that dark whisper that seems to always be there. Or that comes and goes, so you trick yourself into believing it’s no big deal.
It’s by sharing that you’ll start to heal. And that you’ll help not only yourself, but others as well.
You are not alone.
In memory of Robin Williams, who died of an apparent suicide August 11, 2014