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Dear Cynthia... > Depression, cutting, low self-esteem
Depression, cutting, low self-esteem
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Guest
Oct 16, 2006
8:45 PM
I haven't been feeling normal for about a year and I think I am depressed. I went to college last year and didn't know anyone. I have always been quiet or shy and I find it really hard to meet people and make friends. I attribute my awkwardness and inability to talk openly to people I have just met to a personal shortcoming. Like my personality is flawed. I found myself reaching for my X-acto knife one day and have been cutting ever since. I only do it about once a week or less but the thing is I don't feel like there is anything wrong with it. I am expressly not suicidal (although sometimes I really don't want to exist. I usually go to sleep instead) but I like having a secret and I like the ritual of putting on Neosporin and a bandaid. I like how the scars feel, too. I don't think anyone knows and I would like to keep it that way. I also cry almost daily, sometimes prompted by absolutely nothing, or something unrelated like stubbing my toe. I don't like to cry in front of other people and it's not just weeping but a hyperventilating-uncontrollable-sobbing-wanting-to-scream kind of crying. Sometimes I wish something really tragic would happen to me so I would have a reason to feel this way. I don't have a bad life besides my flaws, nothing that justifies the way I feel. I also don't let people get to know me and I have never had a boyfriend or anyone, really, that I feel completely comfortable around. I have never been good at expressing my emotions, choosing instead to keep them inside. I feel intensely lonely and like I don't have enough friends. I don't want to admit this to anyone, especially my family. I don't know that I want to seek help because I don't feel like I will be able to open up, like if I do, something catastrophic will happen, I will collapse emotionally or something. I don't like to put my problems on other people. I think I hide it well. At the same time feeling sad and cutting myself is almost cozy in its familiarity and it tends to come in cycles. I don't even have a specific question, I guess I just want your thoughts on what to do next.
Cynthia
105 posts
Oct 17, 2006
12:35 AM
Well, it sounds like you are pretty content with the way things are, except for being "intensely lonely." Do you connect with people online in chat rooms, or myspace, or anything? I know there are lots of people who cut themselves who communicate online, for example. Perhaps that would be a way of beginning to feel less lonely.

Generally people resist change, and if something is working for them, they are unlikely to change it. The only area that looks open for change, from what you wrote, is the loneliness. So do you have any ideas what might help relieve that for you? The issues you talk about could be helped by a therapist and maybe a therapy group, but only if you're wanting and able to make use of them, and it sounds like you're not at this point.

I have lots of questions about how you got where you are. It would be difficult to try to have that dialogue here, but we could try to do some. Why do you think of talking to people about your feelings as a burden for them? What scares you about meeting and getting to know people?

Warmly,

Cynthia

Last Edited by Cynthia on Oct 17, 2006 12:36 AM
Anonymous
Guest
Oct 23, 2006
10:30 AM
I posted that on one of the worst days I have had in a while. I have really bad days but I still have good days, and on the good days I don't really recognize the person I seem to be on the bad days. It feels like I never quite wake up, everything is fuzzy and I feel like all I want to do is lie down and stare into space. I usually feel very reluctant to leave my house, and if I do force myself to go somewhere, once I am there, all I want to do is go back home. Yesterday I went to get lunch and on my way to the checkout line, considered putting my groceries back and going home because I didn't want to deal with making the purchase. It seems ridiculous now. I also get irritable and really quiet.
I also have a question: I am on birth control and think it might be causing the depression as I have googled Yasmin and depression and found a lot of people reporting it as a side effect. Have you heard of this before? My starting to take it seems to have coincided with my feeling down. It was prescribed by my dermatologist. Thanks.
Cynthia
110 posts
Oct 23, 2006
11:30 PM
Given what you've said, I think you owe it to yourself to talk to a doctor more knowledgeable about depression and hormones than your dermatologist is likely to be. A psychiatrist who's familiar with hormone medications would be best. You are suffering way too much; please do get this checked out, so you can go back to feeling good more consistently. Let me know what you decide.

Yours,

Cynthia
Medicine_Horse
1 post
Apr 25, 2007
5:22 PM
When I shared my Secret with my grandparents they were cruel. I started to cut myself. I felt that all the pain and suffering flowed out in the color of red. I don't know if what i am doing is wrong. I have friends that used to but they stoped because they found that it did not solve anything. I just thought that i would only do it once, but now when i fell depressed i want to cut. what should i do????

Last Edited by on Apr 25, 2007 5:24 PM
Cynthia
172 posts
May 15, 2007
11:37 PM
Medicine Horse,

I'm sorry I haven't been able to respond sooner; I didn't get your message until today, because I was on vacation.

It is so unfortunate that your grandparents reacted cruelly to your telling them you are a lesbian. Being who you are and loving women are wonderful things. It sounds like they are not good resources for telling secrets, or at least not some of them.

It really helps to talk to a counselor or therapist who understands lesbians and how wonderful it is to be one. It's great you have friends to talk to, but it sounds like you need more. Most people can benefit from talking to a good professional about what is emotionally painful for them. Is there any chance you can find a lesbian-friendly counselor you can talk to?

Now that you've found relief in cutting, it may be tempting when you have emotional pain. We all need relief when we are in pain. I hope you can find other ways to get that relief, so you don't need to expose yourself to infection, scars and physical pain. This is a search you would do with a good therapist if you can get to one. Have you already found any other ways to relieve your emotional pain?

Warmly,

Cynthia


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 Cynthia W. Lubow, MFT

 For 30 years, compassionately helping people build self-confidence and feel happier.

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