Violent depression

Here we go from unreal to apathetic. No, not even apathetic. Depressed. I really can´t be arsed to be coherent, so prepare for the worst.

The only way to look at my feelings (as opposed to letting them determine how I look at everything else) which I have found so far is describing what they…well, feel like. So if I constantly describe moods and states of mind, it´s not because I think they´re so goddamn interesting that I need to explain them to the world wide web in painful detail. I´m simply trying to understand in what way I am actually suffering. Because I´m not very good at knowing how I feel or what I´m missing. Yeeehaaaa.

The first thing I realize is that I cannot snap out of a defensive, hostile tone as I write this. That´s odd because no reader of this blog has ever done anything to me. I still anticipate an attack, though. While there certainly are people out there who could comment in a hurtful way on what I write here,  the primary attackers seem to be somewhere in my head.

Indeed, I feel horrible aggression towards myself. Natch; I´m dissatisfied with myself for not working on my three essays and all the other stuff I should be doing. But the main reason I´m not getting anything done is the goddamn aggression/depression thing. So if I was rid of that, then maybe I could work. If I could work, then maybe I´d get rid of it. Catch-22.

So. This aggression (great, first I say I won´t be coherent, and then I try to get a structure into this. Inconsequential as always). Yeah. What do I do with that? Oh god, I´m so fucking listless. Even navel-gazing isn´t good enough for me. Is anything? No. I also feel like nothing in the world could make me happy. Not even – okay, not even going on a big, fat, huge, crazy roller coaster ride, and I´m a sucker for these things. But how do I feel at the thought of going on one of these? Resentful. Apparently I don´t even want to be happy.

Yeah, great. I´m not exactly taking myself seriously right now. I´m making fun of myself, but that won´t make me feel better. I´ll think I´ve wrote an entertaining blog entry (what kind of people do I think read this if I expect them to find it funny that a miserable person is slagging herself off?), but I´ll feel just as shitty as I did before, and I will definitely not be able to work. Okay, that was self-pity. I´m not slagging myself off. I´m just laughing instead of crying. Which isn´t great, either. But I don´t want to cry, even though I feel like it. It seems to me like my “depression” is not worth the effort of shedding tears, wiping my nose and hiding my red eyes. And the silly sounds. What do I make them for? I´m not a little baby anymore, nobody will come and make it alright, so who am I appealing to? Same thing with cutting, which I also feel like doing. What´s it good for, I´d hide the scratches anyway because the reactions I´d get are not the ones I´d need.

There is another reason why I want to cut, and that is this aggression. I almost get a sick little kick out of imagining being beaten to death with a crowbar. I just want to lie in a corner and cry and scream. While someone listens. Hm…if someone was beating me up, and if I was crying in pain then at least he´d technically be able to relieve my agony (if he wanted to, that is). So is that what I´m looking for?

No. Not primarily. That is just the prettier explanation. Truth is, I don´t want hope, I want to see my aggressions being carried out. When I imagine that scene, I don´t see it from the perspective of the victim. I see it from the perspective of the perpetrator. Just that the victim is me as well. I don´t think that beating up anybody else would make things better. The thought alone makes me feel weak and resigned. (The only exception to this are noisy people passing by outside. I feel my aggression flaring up each time (and it hurts) and I wish I could do things to those people which I won´t even describe here. And I won´t do them, either, so no need to worry.)

So the key to the beating scene is that I am two people at once. Right now as I´m thinking about the scene it is changing a little. At first it was just a compulsive fantasy. I had to imagine myself beating up another me, breaking each single one of her bones and making her scream in as much agony as possible. Now, however, the me who holds the crowbar is no longer angry. She stares down at the other me and just revels in that me´s crying. She listens with as much attention, care and focus as only a sadist can. It makes me feel good and loved, like a warm blanket put around my shoulders. Or like I am the loving one. The cruel me feels oddly compassionate towards the crying me, even though she made her cry in the first place. For a moment I don´t feel depressed anymore.

I think in a way this scene, and particularly the fact that I get some comfort out of it, is very sad. Because if this scene was real, victim and perpetrator would not be one. A sadist might feel this kind of connection to her victim, and even affection, but the victim would feel terrified and isolated. Like it doesn´t matter how much she cries, there will be no reaction apart from that blank, melancholic stare. She is facing a human wall. She is completely alone, locked up inside her mind and feelings. She cannot reach out to her opponent, she cannot get any genuine human reaction, any emotion out of her. If you are needy enough, this is absolutely panic-inducing. Eventually you feel like you´re going to choke. In other cases it might simply be frustrating. You might doubt your sanity. It can´t be that you really cannot penetrate that goddamn mask. There has to be a human being behind this empty face, right? Right? Somewhere?

So if I get comfort out of this it is not because “crying me” has been soothed and cared for. What I feel is the comfort of the sadist who forces others to feel her own misery and then pats them on the head and says soothing things to them and somehow starts to feel like she is being cared for. I can´t cry, so I must make somebody else cry.

I don´t do it for real. I harm no one but myself. Maybe I don´t even harm myself. That “crying me” is not really another personality, after all. But it makes me a little sad, just for a moment, that this is the only way I can experience some comfort. How messed up am I then, really? How do other people soothe themselves when they are full of aggression and self-hatred and just want to smash everything (and are still stuck in polite and caring behavior, unable to even express that they are not well)?

The thing is, by trying to “regulate” my aggressions I feel like I´m violating myself. Each time I don´t yell and punch something when I get frustrated, I feel like I´m torturing myself. Like: You little piece of crap, feeling bad is your own fault for not being able to work properly/not fail/accept frustrations! You are so pathetic for feeling angry about it! You deserve to fail, you deserve to be miserable! I feel like the whole world is laughing at me and pointing their finger. And so I just put up a blank face (creepy connections, anybody?) and deny that I even am angry. It´s like being slapped in the face and forcing yourself to smile just to cover up the humiliation.

Just that in this case the person I´m trying to fool is me myself. For a while I can make myself believe that I´m able to cope with frustration, that I´ll just try again, that I´m not childishly angry and helpless. That I don´t hurt. And then, at some point, I get so sick of my fake smile. I think that nothing is more embarrassing and humiliating than my own attempts at looking brave and optimistic to myself. I rebel on the inside; I think yes, I do hurt, I hurt so fucking much!, but there´s no response. No release. I wish I could just freak out, lose it, break down or become violent, but I don´t. I remain good and polite. I know that no one will ever help me. And so imagining to be killed becomes a form of self-soothing. The homicidal part gets release from her aggressions. The victim part gets release from her self-hatred. Oh, and she can finally cry.  She can cry over all the things that didn´t seem to be worth crying about. It is acceptable to pity yourself while you´re being beaten to death, you see. There is a subtle triumph in this – imagining such a particularly cruel death.

It sucks. I didn´t manage to turn writing this entry into anything that could help me shake this mood. I just indulged in violent fantasies. I suck. I fail. I should die. I´ve said that all before, but I can´t help spitting out these phrases. Exactly how did I fail, though? I failed to look at my feelings. I let them run rampant.

Okay, enough. I didn´t let them run rampant. They simply did. They needed an outlet. Here I go, being disgusted with myself for showing emotions. The negative feelings I get when I become sarcastic, dramatic or in any other way emotional on my blog are maybe much more significant than I thought. Immediately I see a thousand opportunities for readers to accuse me of  expose my self-pity, drama-addiction, attention-whoring, you name it. I cannot just innocently express whatever I feel, because straight away there will be an alarm going off inside my head, warning me that I´m making myself vulnerable. Don´t angrily write that you don´t deserve this; or else somebody will take a good look at what you wrote and prove to you that you deserve this very much! But doesn´t that mean I expect that every time I show some self-confidence or assert myself somebody will come and demolish me?  Wouldn´t this mean that the hypothetical reader wants me to feel bad and self-conscious? Doesn´t this mean that I am forced to put all the scrutiny on my own behavior just to make sure that I didn´t do something to deserve my misery before I complain? And isn´t that a battle you cannot win? 

Connections, once again. I just don´t know what to make of them.




2 Responses to “Violent depression”

  1. Oh goodness, I know these feelings. I think for me it is that I can’t express myself. That the things I’ve gone through in life don’t seem bad enough to warrant how I feel about them. I feel like these fantasies give me a “reason” to feel that bad, permission as it were, a “safe” place where others can’t see. In them I can scream, cry, etc. and there is an obvious reason. I never see myself as the perpetrator, it is always a man, and he is always cruel. I actually have a whole story line where I’m someone else and the suffering is for a cause. Others there can look at the scars and wonder how I survived it. I don’t want sympathy. I guess I want someone to understand. But who could? I guess in that fantasy story I can express and not feel bad about it. I don’t hate myself for doing it, I am just incredibly frustrated that I keep doing it. It seems like part of you may be being able to look back on yourself and feel good that you are expressing and feel for yourself and thus self comfort. With me, I just want to express. I am a person who doesn’t want anything inside me “seen” by another person. I have an art degree, but can’t express myself in art. I feel like the way I feel is past what art can express. But I’m guessing I just haven’t learned enough about how to express to find ways that actually resolve anything. Or perhaps those things can be broken down and dealt with in layers. I don’t know. I guess I don’t really believe that that is possible, so I keep resorting to fantasies that obviously don’t meet my needs since I keep going back to them. They allow me express in the moment, but later I need to express again. I don’t think you are messed up. I think that we have experienced things that are so torturous to our very beings that we can’t even contain it well enough to express it, so it comes out as anger, rage, frustration, and fantasies. I mean what would others do if they experienced what we have? Would they dissociate? Kill themselves? We have imagination, and that is a powerful tool I think we can use for the good if we can figure out how to harness it. Sometimes we need to rant. Thank you for ranting. It is good to know there is someone else out there like me who is also looking for a solution.

  2. Thank you for your comment.

    Regarding storylines, I´ve got that, too. I almost always had one or more such stories. And in those stories there were always others who, when finding out about what had happened, were mystified and shocked. In some ways those stories were a source of strength, I could talk about how I felt to imaginary allies without having to justify those feelings. Often I even learned things about myself. And above all, in those daydreams I could feel like a GOOD person.

    Self-soothing – I´m pretty bad at that. Often I can´t even be bothered fixing myself a proper meal. Apart from writing, those dreams may well be the only way I know. I guess I switch to the role of the perpetrator and then change the story, make him be nicer to me in order to be nice to myself, and then I feel cared about. I keep on slipping into those daydreams, too, it´s not like I have it under control.

    Do you have a blog?

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