TRIGGER WARNING. I WILL BE TALKING ABOUT DEPRESSION. IF YOU DON’T WANT TO HEAR ABOUT DEPRESSION, YOU PROBABLY SHOULDN’T READ THIS ONE.
I’ve hit this odd intersection in my writing. See, I’ve heard a lot about anti-depressants/anti-anxiety meds and whatnot, and that creative sorts (writers, musicians, etc) have had a lot of trouble with them. They don’t have the drive anymore, they don’t have the juice to continue. They’ve had to stop writing if they’re on the meds. I’m not keen on this; not with my grad school deadlines and how much my writing is important to my sanity.
Also worth noting, the vast majority of my writing, when it started, was borne out of the beginnings of my depressive swings.
But…here’s the trouble. What happens when the depression is hitting hard enough that you can’t write anymore?
I still don’t want to take meds. I don’t want to know how they change me. As odd as it sounds, I haven’t been not depressed in so long, I don’t know what the not-depressed me looks like. I don’t know if they write. I don’t know who they are, and I’m not quite ready to go through that level of shift right now.
But it’s not working. I can’t write. I can’t do anything. I spend most of my day in bed thinking about all the things I’m not doing and how much I hate myself for not doing them, but “knowing” that if I get up and try, I won’t do them anyway. It’s a lose-lose situation, and I don’t know how to break myself of it.
I don’t want to go to therapy. I hate talk therapy, even in the non-professional settings I’ve seen it in. I don’t want to spill out everything to some person and pay them for it. I don’t have the money for it–but I don’t have the money for meds either. So I try and combat it the way I always have–distraction and my friends. But that’s not working either. If I can’t get up the energy to distract myself, I just sit and do nothing…like I’ve been doing.
It doesn’t help that I’m still unemployed, so I don’t even have a job to distract me. That was one of the nicest things about having a job during these times; even in the worst depressive swing, I was raised with enough ethics in me that I couldn’t find a justification for calling in sick when I felt like dying. So I got up and went to work, each and every day. And usually the depressive swing would pass, and I could continue on. I’d find something new to latch onto. I’d find a new distraction.
I’ve had lots of new things to hold onto lately, and none of them are pulling me out of this. I don’t know what else to do. I’ve spent the past 48 hours in a haze of blah and I can’t figure out what to do about it. The worst part is, that I’ve been told my work is slipping. I got critiqued about my last piece of work being “sloppy”–and I know why. I wrote it in a rush because I ran out of time, since I couldn’t convince myself to write anything for weeks, and then turned it in without having a chance (or interest) in looking it over.
Clearly this can’t continue. But I don’t know what to do.
Any ideas, from writers who have been here/known others that have?