I’m reading a book called I’m not SIck I Don’t Need Help by Xavier Amador. It was a gift from a kind person in my support group. I’m not far into the book. I can’t say much about it, but it was so highly recommended that the group leader purchases the books from his own money and hands out copies at every meeting. I was blown away by his conviction and generosity. I’ve been trying to read it as much as possible, but school and work keep getting in the way happy free time.
It’s been good so far, in that, I feel less alone in my quandary. Why would someone, who has been told by professionals they are sick, avoid treatment? I will finish reading it before I proceed with my latest idea to reach the boyfriend about the seriousness of this issue, but I wanted to post my idea.
The boyfriend is an extreme introvert, and I have found that letters pose a particular impact on him. I use them sparingly, and I have written several that he has never seen. He has received a total of two. What I am proposing would be number three.
The first letter laid out the ground rules of a much needed “break” between us. It was to be a two month long endeavor, but he called it off after one month.
The second letter laid out how I was feeling about certain things. He kept asking what was bothering me, and in my attempts to avoid an argument, I avoided the questions. Finally I wrote down what was bothering me and gave him the note. I meant no harm by it, just answering his questions and showing why I was occasionally aloof. That one hit him hard, which was not my intention. In a strange way I think it was good, because it cleared the air, and it showed me he still cared. At least cared enough to be upset and feel guilty.
I’ve written a third. I first thought it’d be a get-help-or-else letter, but it turned into a rallying cry. I decided to post it to maybe get an outside opinion. I won’t be delivering it until I finish the book. The book is filled with brilliant little helpful gems, and I’d rather have a bright polished letter than one that might cause the opposite of what I hope for.
Here it is:
I love you so much. I don’t know why, but I do. And lately you’ve made that question even harder to answer. I still love you despite your constant assault on our relationship, despite you blaming me for things out of my control, and for hating me for just wanting to be with you. I still love you despite all that’s happened between us. And I will love you tomorrow and I think it’s quite likely I will love you forever.
I’ve come to find out though, that love, for all its sonnets and beauty, won’t fix depression. I can stand by and offer support, I can endure a near constant stream of criticisms, and it turns out I can endure you telling me we should no longer be together for a series of reasons, and I can endure you telling me I’m not your best friend. I have survived things related to us, real and imagined from our “friends.” It turns out I can handle a lot. That my love, and my will are strong and resolute.
I cannot, however, endure this battle against your depression without you. I have researched and read and discussed my situation from many sides. I have been to counselors, support groups and online forums. I have whispered my feelings to the world from a blog I started. I have enlisted a small battalion to help me cope. I have learned how to reach out and ask for help. It wasn’t easy. Things like pride got in my way. But I did it because otherwise…well, your tar monster would suck me in.
I can’t fight this depression any harder than you, and expect any results. You are the captain in this battle. I am a willing and able XO. I will learn to wield any weapon, I will fight on any battleground that you lead me to and I promise that I will not give up even if you think you might want to. I am prepared to fight. My armor is polished and I await orders. That’s where I’m stuck. I have read the battle plans, I know many great tactics. I know side paths to the enemy’s camps you didn’t know existed! I am loyal and ready to fight.
Please consider my offer. My battalion has squads that can serve you as well. Any resource I have, I will gladly share to help you. I have stumbled upon many resources that are just for you, that I am dying to share.
I know you think I’m pushy, and you are tired of this rant. You know me though, have I ever pushed hard for something that wasn’t worth it in the end? I really have no idea the specifics of what you are going though. I do know that it’s hard, near impossible. I also know that it will end. I know that it will end faster with help. I really know how hard it is to ask for help. But I am glad I did. Asking for help does not admit weakness, it shows strength. It shows a strength in yourself, and a pride about who you are and want to become. It shows the world that you think you’re worth it. And I know that’s all hard to do, and hard to admit. That’s why I’m here, to remind you that you are worth it. That you can feel better and that you deserve all of that.
I love you, you are worth it.
Please tell me what you think, don’t hesitate to be brutal. It’s so scary. I don’t know what will set him off. Someday he seems to love the optimism and other days I think he wants to stuff me in a locker like they did to me in high school.