To the Depression I've Known Since I Was 12


The first time I met you, I was 12 years old, huddled in my bed, hands clasping my ears,

I begged my parents to stop. They did not.

When you told me I was worthless, I would take a step back.

Your voice grew louder, and I shriveled.

You stayed, and I counted the days until the number reached 50.

No one noticed, and I prided myself for being such a good actress.

You whispered in my ear, “You are a failure and garbage.”

And no matter how much I fought back, your voice would never go.

People told me there were worse things in the world than parents fighting and fathers leaving.

I believed them, and I ignored the obvious signs you showed.

You made me believe life was not worth living.

When people asked, I could not explain.

You made me a pariah; I would run when they came asking me if I was OK, but I would never say that there’s a voice in my head telling me to jump off my roof, that there’s a voice in my head making me lose, that there’s a voice in my head… Do you have them too?

I heard about the time a friend got raped, and I wondered what was wrong with me?
Nothing had happened to me, and yet you would say jump, jump, and jump again.

I made you into a being, a person or a cloud who would follow me around, who no one else could see.

You are “a sickness who preys on the weak,” they said.

“Am I weak?” I asked myself. I “let” you in, didn’t I? And in return, you gave me sadness, but not a sadness I could not explain.

They told me to look at the light at the end of the tunnel, but I did not see the light, just darkness.

I will see the light.

You will not drag me down to the bottom.

I will crawl out of that hole.

You will not make me question my value.

I will see it no matter the cost.

You will not lead me to oblivion, for I am not meant to stay there.

I will fight.

I will conquer.

And in the end we will tumble, but only one will be the winner.

Follow this journey on The Mind Expressed.

If you or someone you know needs help, visit our suicide prevention resources page.

If you need support right now, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255, the Trevor Project at 1-866-488-7386 or text “START” to 741-741.

If you or a loved one is affected by sexual abuse or assault and need help, call the National Sexual Assault Telephone Hotline at 1-800-656-4673 to be connected with a trained staff member from a sexual assault service provider in your area.

We want to hear your story. Become a Mighty contributor here.

Thinkstock photo by Mr_Khan


Find this story helpful? Share it with someone you care about.


Related to Depression

woman portrait with blurred effect

The Other Type of Imposter Syndrome

I’ve read a lot about the imposter syndrome that people feel may when they have depression or another mental illness. It’s feeling like an impostor – worried the façade of having it all together will slip and fall if anyone looks too closely. It sends chills up your spine when someone asks you how you [...]
Sad young man looking through the window

Dear Depression, I Want You to Know Why You're Wrong

Dear Depression, I never really know where to start when I talk about you. I can never really pinpoint the very first time you came into my life. You never really came into my life with the abruptness of a train wreck as people imagine. You slid into my shadows as each day progressed. You were [...]
snapchat logo

13 Parts of My Life With Depression You Won't See on My Snapchat History

1. My clean laundry that’s been on the floor for days. 2. The dishes all over the kitchen, even though it’s my job to clean them. 3. The times I randomly cry because I’ve been pushing all the pain down to get through my job. 4. The scheduling with a counselor and failing to find [...]
students with professor

Letters to the Professors of a Graduate Student With Depression

Dear Professor, You don’t know, but I found out during summer semester that I have depression, the kind that has to be treated. You don’t know, but I’m terrified. I don’t recognize myself. The charade of still being a high-performing student is exhausting. I don’t know exactly when it happened, but I know I don’t [...]