My good friends (the people i actually consider friends and not just associates or acquaintances) know that I suffer from bipolar disorder. Well I guess you readers do too now huh? Anyhow, my friends typically have known me for years. So they know I go through a process when I’m in crisis. My process is usually self-isolate, reject social media (or lurk very quietly), speak only when necessary, work, eat, shower when i feel up to it, and sleep. Lots of fucking sleep. Repeat and repeat. If I get the inclination that a crisis is coming on, I can usually warn them that it’s coming, so when i disappear, it’s not a total shock to them. BUt sometimes, it’s a sudden onset, and I just go ghost. But for those who know me, I’ll try to get word out that I’m going through a crisis at some point, when i’m not feeling as bad one day, then they know that i’m just gonna be gone for a while and they don’t worry as much. or if they do worry….they never tell me. Even my best friends, people i’ve known for over two decades….they don’t trip when i disappear, because they know at some point, i‘’ll get back in touch when the crisis has been averted. they give me my space and let me do my thing. They usually give me about 1.5 to 2 weeks to stay missing before they check in, then they go back to their lives and continue living and letting me do my thing. they don’t spaz out when they don’t hear from me. They know if something was to happen, and i don’t check in within those two weeks, then they come looking, or at least one of them comes looking, then alerts the rest to what they find. it’s her job to keep everyone up to date if i do actually kill myself. she has the passcodes to everything to contact everyone, and to prepare my funeral, knows what to do with my body, is responsible and is listed as my next of kin, she is my family. I know it’s a lot to put on a person, but over the years we’ve talked in detail about this and she understands the job and accepts the responsibility.
Now the most recent person in my life to earn the title of friend, doesn’t understand any of this. they freak out when i disappear or go no contact for days. they get all nervous and start to worry, start blowing up the phone, messages, instant messenger, all of the ways of contact. mind you, i’ve explained to them how i manage my depression numerous times. so i have to wonder…were they ever listening to me when i spoke to them? did you hear me or were you only listening when it was convenient for you? Do you get upset because you want to start an argument? or does it bother you that i’m doing things my way and not the way that you would do things? that i’m not open with you about my feelings? that i can’t tell you what’s going on in my head? or how i’m feeling at that exact moment? shit, i can’t even tell myself how i’m feeling, or my therapist because I don’t fucking know. I can’t tell you how long a crisis is going to last because i don’t fucking know, i can give you a warning when i feel it, but if it suddenly comes on, there is no warning to give. If its a bad day, then yes i’m going to ignore you just like i’m ignoring everyone. you aren’t special in that moment. i’ll try to make contact when i can to let you know what’s going on, but don’t mistake that for me trying to keep in touch. i have some good days, but i have a lot of bad days in crisis. the few good days in crisis may seem like i’m okay, and i can talk to you like everything is fine, but until i tell you i’m out of crisis, don’t assume that i am. don’t assume that i’m all better. i’m not, not even remotely. i can have the perfect day and by night fall it can all go directly to shit. and i’ll feel like putting a bullet in my brain all in the same day.
now this friend, i feel like they judge me. because when i came out of my most recent crisis, i contacted them to let them know. and the first thing was that they didn’t respond at all. so i questioned of course, did it even matter to them that i survived. they said that i didn’t say anything for them to respond to, and that since i was ignoring them before (when i first went into crisis), they weren’t sure if i wanted them to even respond. so i let them know why i didn’t respond to them from before. about how dark this particular crisis was, that i had two close calls with death. then i didn’t want to talk to them because when i did talk to them, they seem to always complain about how “draining” it is to deal with me and my emotions. When they say the word draining, it just sounds like i suck the soul out of them. like i’m a burden they have to carry. so i just said fuck it, i won’t be that burden for you. even though i put my life on hold to help them through their time of need just before my crisis decided to unpause itself (i was already going through crisis, before they had a moment and i put mine on pause to help deal with theirs), i was exhausted trying to always be there. i know for someone trying to be there for me is ten times worse than anything i would have ever gone through. so i did it my way…. ALONE. i said that in this moment, this isn’t about you, but yes i want you to care, i want you to be there, but understand this is how i do things. ***now here i go again for the umpteenth time trying to explain how i deal with my depression*** i explain that i’m not just ignoring them for the hell of it, but for my own mental health. and if i didn’t want to speak to them at all, i wouldn’t just vanish, i’d say so.
but then they brought up how it was “confusing to them” that i was sending messages on other occasions before ***remember when i said i had good days sprinkled in the middle of my spells….this was when i had one of those good days*** but then they go and tell me…. “you may have your reasons to ignore me but that doesn’t make it right” …. well excuse the fuck outta me….i was a little busy being depressed and trying to decide whether or not i should kill myself…i most certainly wasn’t thinking about you in that moment. i think that reason trumps anything you can think of as a reason to ignore you. So they just say. . . . .”well i’ll just change the way i react to you”
how do you react to me? because here is where i’m confused? because your current reaction is not that of a friend.
now remember all those other friends i mentioned….none of them act like this hysterical. Not even the ones i’ve met in the last 5 or so years. If we are JUST FRIENDS . . . . . why does it bother you so much what i do? why does it bother you so much if i disappear for a few days? why does it bother you if i ignore you? why are you reacting to me doing all these things the way you do? FRIENDS DON’T DO THINGS LIKE THAT!! there is usually some underlying feeling or emotional tie to the other person. now this friend says they are an empath . . . . . personally i kinda call bullshit on this. because if this were true, they would have felt just how much of an emotional struggle i was having right after they told me we couldn’t be in a relationship because they only saw me as just a fucking friend and that we could never be anything more. they would have felt how much that shit hurt me to my inner core. but they didn’t. they would have never kept on to tell me they loved me, knowing how i felt after the fact. because their “i love you” is not the FRIEND type of i love you, it has an intimate feel behind it. which gives off seriously confusing vibes. (which i’ve learned to just shrug this saying off because it’s meaning has been lost on me . . . . . my true friends…when they say i love you..they say it with a friendly tone…not with an intimate tone).
So to them and their reaction…i respond and asked what was it that they wanted from me? because i’m curious to know? How do they expect me to change overnight and become someone else? it’s like when we stopped courting each other, they expected me to turn off my emotions overnight and just be okay the next day and just be FRIENDS, to act like i wasn’t in love, like the previous months meant nothing to me, to essentially act like how they were acting. which really threw me for a loop, because how could you go from loving me, to acting like you never had feelings in the span of 24 hours. it’s almost as if you never had feelings to begin with. then of course a month later, tell me you love me and throw a fucking monkey wrench in the program causing more confusion. I explained that this was the way i always did things and they couldn’t expect that to change overnight. that i couldn’t be an open book to them, because then my feelings would get involved and i swore i would never let that happen again with them. it would end tragically a second time around. my brain is like rush hour traffic and all the lights are green. there is no orderly fashion to the way it’s moving. just congestion everywhere, traffic jams left and right and everyone is trying to push through. that’s the thought process in my brain with this disorder.
They accuse me of not listening to them or trying to understand. finally though…they tell me that they are glad i made it through. It’s now the third day since i contacted them.
Now i’m just pissed at this point, because initially that was all i ever wanted. to reach out to my friend and have them say “i’m glad you made it through this” and we just go on with our lives. instead, i’m having to fight this monologue on why i had to separate myself for my mental health. Why all i ever wanted was support from a friend? why i got judged for how i did things my way and not communicated why i suddenly disappeared (sudden onset crisis – not my fault). that they just couldn’t be happy i survived???
They say that they have never made my situation about them? Hmmm i beg to differ…but okay. . . . . words and actions are saying a lot here.
So tell them to do me a solid….to take this whole situation and go explain it to someone. . . . . fuck anyone who is an outside party. and see if they are gonna come up with the same rational excuse as they have. if they would be as upset as they are if their seriously depressed friend (who has warned them of how they cope many many times…and also warned them of this potential crisis) went into a mood and just vanished. Should that depressed friend cater to their needs by keeping them informed of ever situation and every move that is being made? Should they jeopardize their mental stability and track back to wellness just so they can feel good about themselves?
MAKE IT MAKE SENSE TO ME!!
Then they go on about messages that were sent during the good days. like i was wrong for having a good day, then even wronger from having that one good day go straight to shit the same night they sent their response and i just shut down.
I tried to explain that is what happened, but nope they weren’t trying to hear it. all they wanted to know is why do i even bother to reach out when i’m having good days? that i should probably just maintain my distance until the whole thing passes i guess. but then they were all like it’s whatever, i’m done, i gotta protect myself from you.
Now i don’t know what they have to protect themselves from. Because remember we’re JUST FRIENDS? you shouldn’t have any feelings or emotions towards me to protect. remember you don’t see me in that way? i don’t do it for you, you just see me as a friend…so what are you protecting? unless you’ve been lying all this time about your true feelings.
in which case, i call bullshit on it all. you have nothing to protect. my friends don’t have anything to protect. what is there a fear of losing me to my own hands from my eventual suicide? they care, but they don’t care like how you are claiming to care.
So i did them one better…i just said, i’ll go back to doing what i was doing the whole time before i hit them up. we can go back to radio silence if that is what they want. they don’t want to be bothered with me, they don’t have to worry about me. i’ll take my depression filled ass and continue on with my life as it was. work, workout, eat, shower, drink water, watch tv, watch movies, try not to die, sleep, repeat. They don’t have to worry, they don’t have to react, they don’t have shit to protect themself from. if i’m not in the picture, what is there?