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5 Things You Should Know When I'm Depressed and Text You at Night

There are two types of people reading this. To the people who have been there and have seen those dark nights filled with depression and anxiety themselves and get it, thank you. Thank you, thank you, thank you. Thank you for understanding these things. To the people who don’t understand me at night, it’s not your fault. I know you mean well, and I know you really want the best for me — you just haven’t been there yourself. And that’s OK. Heck, that’s great. I don’t ever want you to have to be there. But there are things I want you to know when I text you at night in a craze of depression and anxiety.

1. It took everything in the world for me to text you. I typed that text and erased it at least five times, and I probably threw my phone on the ground after I closed my eyes and hit send — embarrassed, scared and full of shame. Terrified you’d actually respond, I curled myself up in a ball and cringed when I heard the vibration of my phone signaling a response. I felt so bad for bothering you again. I think to myself that you must hate me and be so annoyed with me. And I look at the text you sent me, and I just cringe even more because you responded — you cared enough to do that. Just please know that the anxiety I get is at an all-time high when I reach out for a hand to save me from drowning in depression. It took a lot for me to reach out to you.

2. I am not thinking straight. At all. I am so far into my own head by the time I text you. I’m going to wake up the next morning and get this pit in my stomach from half of what I’m saying. I’ve been ruminating and spiraling in my thoughts and I just need someone to talk to. It’s not that I don’t want you to take me seriously, I just want you to know that not everything I’m saying is coming from a clear state of mind.

3. More than anything, I just need to hear that it’s going to be OK. Some people hate hearing that it gets better, but when it’s 2 a.m. and I’m shaking in bed, tears either soaking my pillow or refusing to leave my eyes as I lay hollow — it’s all I need to hear. It’s everything I need to hear. In the moment, I might not even believe you; in fact, I probably won’t believe you, but those words are words I need to read and see and hear. I need hope. And those five words do the trick. I feel terrible that I have to ask you for them so often, but they make a world of a difference to me.

4. I’m not really texting you for advice. I don’t mean for that to sound mean. But after years of therapy, I know a lot of coping mechanisms and alternatives. It’s not that I don’t need or want your advice, because I’m sure it would be a good reminder. But in the dead of night I don’t think I’m going to have the energy to exercise to get those endorphins going, or do breathing exercises, or go play an instrument to feel better. I want to, and I know it’ll help, but I more just need someone to talk to. I know you mean well and it means so much to me that you care enough to want to help me, but sometimes advice just isn’t really what I need most in the middle of the night.

5. I am so thankful for you. You have no idea. Whether you get it or not, you’re there for me. Even if you don’t respond, you mean a lot to me because if I text you, you must be a pretty special person in my life. Thank you. Thank you for getting me through these nights, thank you for caring, thank you for being the light on a night where I can’t find any stars. You mean the world to me. Thank you.

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Thinkstock via tommaso79