When I previously posted about depression and suicidal thoughts, a dear “real world” friend of mine sent me a message saying “But you always seemed so happy!”
That’s incredibly common among people who suffer from depression and suicidal thoughts. We’re often really good at covering our disease. It’s often baffling when someone you know takes their own life, or confesses they struggle with depression.
A lot of people I care about in the social media community are so clearly broken and grieving over a recent loss to suicide. Questions are being asked that are good and healthy, about the nature of healthy, productive relationships and about how relationships become “real.”
But I see a lot of people asking themselves “Did I really know this person? Was the friendship that I thought was real, actually real?” And the big sister/mama in me just wants to give you all a big hug, and tell you that you aren’t asking yourself these questions because of how you met the person, or how often you saw them “in the flesh.” These are the questions that friends, family and associates of suicide victims always ask.
I also want to speak to other people that suffer from depression, and say that it’s so important for you to manage your disease. It’s so important for you to be honest, real and not pretend to be okay when you’re really not okay. It’s important for you to cultivate loving relationships with people who are willing to pursue you, ask the hard questions and not settle for surface-level answers. Use every weapon you have available to fight your disease.
Because otherwise, it will be your friends and family who are left asking themselves unanswerable questions.