Let’s talk about it.

I remember where I was standing the day that I got the call. A grossly uncommon occurrence, my phone was ringing, the caller ID displaying my friend’s husband. In the twelve years they’ve been married, I can count on two fingers the times he’s phoned me. This being one of them.

My friend was in the hospital. She’d swallowed a half-bottle of pills, drank a bottle of wine, slit her wrists and laid down in the bath tub to wait to die.

It was July 1st, Canada Day (three years ago). There were fireworks going off in the background as I heard him explaining to me what had happened. And, as sad as it sounds, this was my first time hearing that she even suffered from depression. She’d never told me and I had never asked.

Lesson learned.

I hopped on the plane 24 hours later and went to see her. With guilt in my gut and sadness in my heart, I wasn’t really sure what to expect.

She spent almost three months in the hospital. Seeing her there, barely there, heavily medicated, being watched like a hawk to ensure she didn’t try to hurt herself again, that was hard on me. And if it was hard on me, I can’t imagine how hard it was on her.

Over the next three months, during the periods of time in which she got access to her phone, I learned the extent to which she’d been suffering. I also learned the extent to which she was still suffering as the doctors mixed and matched medications to help her feel better, and the side effects they came with.

If you don’t ask, you just never know. The problem with never asking is that you don’t think about it. And you need to think about it. It’s not pleasant. It’s not happy, but it needs to be talked about.

I carry around a lot of guilt over not knowing how much my friend was suffering. And the stupid thing is, I know it’s not about me. It’s really not. It’s about her. I owed it to her to check on her. I owed it to her to be an ear for her to talk to. And I wasn’t there.

Never again.

Let’s talk about it.

Seriously.

When I ask you what’s wrong, I want you to be truthful with me. No matter how awful, no matter how dark, I want to know.

Being able to take those deep, dark, depressing thoughts from the far corners of your brain and let them out into the universe, it helps. I’m not saying that it solves everything, but it definitely helps. And people who are suffering, they need peace… no matter how small of a dose it comes in.

If you know me, you know that I’m the type of person (now) who’ll ask how you’re doing… one, two, three… maybe even four times. That’s on purpose. I want to know how you’re doing. There’s no motive behind it. I just want the truth. Life ain’t always pretty… and it need not be painted that way. I want the people in my life to know that I’m the person you don’t always have to be happy towards.

Sometimes you just need to have an angry phone call where all that you talk about is the things that suck, depress you or piss you off.

Sometimes, you really just need someone to listen.

I want to be that person who people know will listen. I want more people to be that person who people know will listen to them. I want more people to be that person that you know will listen to you.

The way I see it, we could all do a little better with ourselves and others if we just listened.

Let’s talk about it. Let’s talk with the people we love about everything. Not jut the positives, but all of the negatives. Because peace of mind is important, no matter how small the dose.

23 thoughts on “Let’s talk about it.

  1. I loved this post. I am the same way. I don’t ask to ask. I want to know how my friend are doing, and it is frustrating when they don’t open up. And on the flip side, I appreciate the friends who provide that support for me; the ones who ask me how I’m doing, especially when they know I’m going through something hard.

    Thank you for sharing this hard story. I hope your friend is doing better. You sound like a good friend. πŸ™‚

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Wow, this is so beautifully written. I’m so sorry about your friend, but I’m glad you used this experience to help other people in need. Your blogs are so pure and truthful. The world needs more of that. Keep it up.

    Liked by 4 people

  3. Basically, most people do not want to deal with it. If they do, then it might rub off on them. Like cancer, anxiety, depression, heart disease. If the person brings it up, many will say ”oh you’re gonna be just fine.” Let’s go get ice cream, or a drink. Get your mind off if it.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I hear you. I really do. That ‘Oh you’re going to be just fine’ is sometimes the hardest thing for someone to hear. It sucks, but you can’t help it if someone is afraid to talk about it. It’s such a catch 22.

      Anyways, I’m rambling now. Thank you for reading and for your note. ❀

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Thank you for this. I’ve been on the other side of the dynamic between you and your friend. It’s been 15 years and there’s still times where I can feel some resentment towards my friends at the time for not saying anything. I know that’s ridiculous and I probably wouldn’t have even said anything but still it’s there. Your post just shined a light on a different perspective that I hadn’t seen before. It felt good. πŸ–€πŸ–€πŸ–€

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Firstly, I’m so sorry for what you’ve been through. I can’t imagine what it’s like.

      Thank you for reading, and for your strength. ❀ Sending you love and hoping you've got a good support system around to this day and beyond!

      Liked by 2 people

    1. I’m doing well this evening, how are you? Also, why can I not follow your page without providing my email address? I meant to ask you before but I forgot.

      It’s weird, I can follow everyone else without providing my email address but with your page I have to provide my email. Because my email has my last name in it, I don’t want to use it to follow. Does that make sense?

      Like

  5. Beautifully expressed and very valid thought Vee. I am so glad that people always open up to me. Not only friends – people I hardly know too. And I am so thankful to God that He has taught me How to Listen with Compassion. I was not always like that.
    All of us should be able to read between the lines. Be there for each other. This makes this journey a little more bearable.
    I am so proud of you. Much love and blessings

    Liked by 1 person

  6. As is often the case, I love this post, V. Sorry for being absent for a few days, was a bit under the weather and not feeling in the best place. Sometimes we can’t see what someone is really going through and it’s important to let them know regardless that we’re always there for them and they can tell us anything. You stressed that in this post. No matter how dark, tell us. Giving you love as I always do. πŸ™‚

    Like

  7. Thank you for writing this. It’s important for people to talk about it. It took a long time for me to be diagnosed with bipolar disorder. I’ve always had way more highs than lows. When the lows come they are earth shattering. My first really serious depression was in the my mid twenties. I lost nearly all of my friends because I wasn’t my happy self and I shared that I was in an intensive 3 day a week outpatient program and I was actively suicidal. My best friend yelled at me that I was so selfish to tell him that when he came over for the first time in months to tell me his father had just passed away. I had one good friend, like you, who stuck through it with me. He came over every day and sat with me, kept me company and a light in the world until I was well enough to re-enter the world. Thank you for being such a good friend to another who needs a friend! β™₯ It matters.

    Like

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