It’s tough to pinpoint where my story begins because there was never a defining point in my life where I started feeling as if I wasn’t okay. In fact, it’s even tough to remember a time where I believe I wasn’t depressed, which is a depressing thought in and of itself.
As a toddler I was happy. I wish I could remember those times, but the positive memories of my childhood are a distant vision in the midst of fifteen years of self hatred and numbness. The memories I’m left with are those that are tough to acknowledge at the best of times.
When I tried to reach out for help, I was knocked back. Told that men don’t cry and it was time to man up. My feelings were belittled and I was made to believe I was making it all up for attention and wasting other people's time by trying to talk about it with them. So I told myself, there’s no point in searching for help because it wasn’t there.
This installed a belief of my worthlessness as a human being that I’ve been carrying as a chip on my shoulder ever since. So what happens when for most of your life you feel as if you have no value in the world? The answer is stop caring about what happens to you.
Throughout my life, my depression has cost me just about everything. I’ve lost friends, relationships, jobs, education and even my ability to stay happy. Months have gone past where I’ve been unable to find the motivation to even get out of bed. At my darkest times I’ve even considered ending it all to simply stop the pain.
To those that know me, this story may come as a shock to you. But when you’ve suffered for as long as I have you get pretty damn good at being able to hide your problems from other people. I learnt very quickly that nobody wants to be around a negative person, so I hid in plain sight.
But not anymore.
With this platform I want to give a voice to men out there that have suffered in silence for too long. I’ve been blessed with people in my life that have been incredibly supportive in recent years. It’s time for me to pay it forward and help those who haven’t been as lucky as me. So to men everywhere, I implore you to reach out to me or those around you for help and let’s get through this together.
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