Letter to my counselor

I’ve agonized over what to tell you, how to tell you. Expressing my feelings has always been hard for me. And it’s not a trust issue, really it’s not. At least it’s not with you. It’s an issue I have comprehending my own feelings. Trying to figure out what I’m feeling and then put those feelings in to words is hard for me. No matter who I’m talking to (or not talking to).

One thing’s for certain, everything is overwhelmingly intense. I spend so much energy dealing with the intensity of the feelings themselves that I can’t deal with anything else. I don’t know if I’ve ever told you this. If I have, it’s worth repeating, because it describes so well how I feel… just about all the time. I feel like I’m driving on a road, right by a cliff. The road is cracking and not stable. The cliff is a 1000 feet down. At the bottom is frigid cold water. I drive along the road, until I hit an unstable place. I fall into the icy cold water. I see a hand, one that I think is there to save me. I reach for it, but the person just pushes me further in to the water. I’m alone, and I want to die, but something keeps me going. Finally I’m out of the water. I get up, and keep going, until it happens all over again.

Work’s hard. Life’s hard. I have to pretend that everything is ok. Put on my smiley face and fight back the losing battle of tears at work. Smile and say fine when someone asks how I’m doing. Actually answering that question truthfully would scare people off in most cases. At the same time, pretending I’m ok when I’m not is leaving me alone to deal with the feelings.

I used to have an overwhelming sense of fear all the time. Fear not targeted to anything I could put my hands on, at least not that I can figure out. Lately, that fear is lifting. Instead of the absence of fear comforting me, it’s left me unsettled. I know the feeling going away is not because I’m getting better.

I still have issues with wanting to self-injure. Don’t ask me how or why it helps, it just does. I know if I do it though, I will get questions, will get yelled at. So I just have to figure out ways to hurt myself, physically, that no one notices.

I want to die. I close my eyes and can see myself in a coffin, see myself pulling the trigger. Whether or not I would do it is immaterial (though, for your own peace of mind, I would never do it). I still have to deal with the images. Still have to make a conscience decision that today I live. While it seems everyone else in this world seems to have that choice down, I don’t. Every day, I have to remake that choice. Wake up and decide I will get through the day… alive. Why is that so hard for me to do? Why is this something I still struggle with, even after all these years?

Most everything I’ve told you isn’t new. I’ve been dealing with the the thoughts since I was a teenager. I’m supposed to be able to deal with them. To understand them and not let them control me. But I can’t avoid the constant swings; I’m nothing but a failure.

I think one of the things that really makes the feelings hard is I see no reason why I have a right to them. I know other people are going through much worse. I have it made. Yet, just making the choice to live is so hard for me, let alone getting through the rest of my life.

One thought on “Letter to my counselor”

  1. I can't offer any words of advice, but I just wanted to let you know that I completely and utterly empathise with everything you've written. You've put it in a much more poetic way than I've ever done though.

    I've just lost my job due to my mental ill health; I simply couldn't cope with it. I applaud you for being able to deal with work in the way I failed to do.

    As I said, nothing in the way of help, but I just wanted to let you know that someone out there 'gets' it. You're not alone x

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