The Truth

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Living with depression is not an easy thing to do

Living with anxiety is not an easy thing to do

Living with both has become so painfully unbearable

That it is almost impossible for me to get out of the bed in the mornings

And I have not showered in over a week

Because living in a dorm and having to share showers

With an entire hall of girls that I don’t even know

Is more than I can handle anymore

And the workload that I am given by my professors

Who cannot possibly fathom the amount of stress I am under

Is ridiculous, especially when a portion of that work is honors work

And I am tired of people asking me if I am okay,

And telling me that I need to smile more,

Or make more of an effort to go out and make friends

When I would rather lay in bed and pretend that I don’t exist

Because that is the least painful thing that I can think to do anymore

When no one understands that depression and anxiety are serious problems

And we live in a society that romanticizes mental illness

While degrading it simultaneously

Where kids on Twitter and Instagram post selfies in which you can see their wrists,

Scarred by the idea that they’ll get more attention if they act like they’re ill

And where kids on Tumblr and Facebook and YouTube

Consistently talk about how much they hate their lives

And how they want to kill themselves

Because they were a little bit sad once

And it makes me physically sick

To the point of vomiting in a bathroom that is not mine

And going back to my room and crying,

But only loud enough for myself to hear

So my roommate doesn’t wake up and ask me what’s wrong

And I have read so many fictional works

And I have seen so many goddamn movies and television shows

About girls who self-harm

And teenagers that kill themselves

And I think that these books and stories are the reason

That kids seek this sort of attention,

Because they think they pain is “poetic”

And they hope that somebody, somewhere will write about them

Or that somebody, somewhere will “fix” them

But there is nothing poetic about a mother sobbing in a doorway,

Supported by her husband who is silently crying and holding her,

Unsure of how to react to their child’s lifeless body hanging by a rope from the ceiling

And there is nothing romantic about a couple of broken kids

Thinking that they’re falling in love with each other

When they don’t even know what love is supposed to be

Because they have spent the entirety of their life hating themselves

And hating everything around them because they learned at a young age

That the world is not a beautiful place,

But instead full of rapists and bullies and alcoholics and drug addicts

And so much fucking blood, and pain,

And why are they bleeding the way that they are?

There wasn’t supposed to be so much blood

And no one is going to fix you

Because having a mental illness is looked down upon

And is seen as something tragic and awful

And that is why it’s called illness

No one is going to come in and kiss you and tell you they love you

And magically make everything better

Because that is not how it works

And I have learned that the hard way

By training myself to count to ten in order to get out of bed

And to wash myself in the sink in my room

But still take regular showers every now and then

And I have learned that spilling blood and smoking cigarettes

Is never the way to feel better

Because you only ever feel worse

And I have learned that loving myself is the only way

To make any of this easier

Because none of this will ever be easy

It will never be easy thinking of all the ways I could possibly kill myself

With what I have lying around my room

And it will never be easy to stop myself from jumping in front of traffic

And it will never be easy to force myself into social situations

In which I need to associate with other people

That could very well hate me

It will never be easy,

But it would be a hell of a lot easier,

Just as long as we stop romanticizing pain

And we stop putting a negative connotation on the term ‘mental illness’

And instead become more understanding and accepting

So that maybe everyone can finally feel like they have a safe place

Outside of razor blades and vodka

And so that maybe everyone will be able to feel a little more okay

Without meaningless sex and marijuana.

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