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How 'Blurryface' Helps Me Explain Depression and Anxiety

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If you’re part of the Skeleton Clique of the band twenty one pilots, you know who Blurryface is. But for those of you who do not — Blurryface is your greatest insecurity. He is your depression. Your anxiety. Anything that you deal with. He is that inner voice that says you will not make it and that you are not strong enough to survive.

I am a teenager and I have my own Blurryface. My own insecurities. My own depression and anxiety. And the hardest part is that inner voice, the one that convinces me I do not have what it takes to make it through this life — that I am not able to do this. It is that wall that holds me back from being the amazingly fun person I know I have in me somewhere. I just cannot find it right now.

You know, I have become “scared of my own image.” Scared of who I am. I want to share who Blurryface is to me. Everyone is different, but I hope to bring light to something that is not talked about enough.

My Blurryface tells me I am worthless, and it minimizes my self-worth. When I’m feeling hopeless, one of my greatest struggles is finding my self-worth. It convinces me no one cares about me and I am merely matter with no purpose. It is so difficult to realize that we all have self-worth. Even surrounded by people who love you, you can feel all alone. You feel completely isolated because you’ve convinced yourself that no one really cares, or that they don’t have time for what you’re dealing with.

I often ask myself, “What is my self-worth?” You know, why am I here? Why do I keep pushing and struggling and struggling? What is the point of this? You sit and go, “Gee, I’m doing nothing with my life and so-and-so is moving on and doing so many things and here I am just depressed.” You then get sucked into this perpetual cycle of self-deprecation and self-worthlessness.

I need someone to tell me I have self-worth, and help me find it. A lot of times, I cannot see or understand why I am still fighting this, but when someone gives me a reason to continue, it helps bring me out of the circle I get stuck in. Everyone says you should “see the light at the end of the tunnel,” but I find that’s not helpful when your mind and perception of life has been completely shrouded by Blurryface. I do not think clearly and I wonder, how do I find my self-worth? How does someone believe in themselves again after being depressed for months? How does someone make that transition into *normal* life after a suicidal attempt? What is that one thing that makes you realize life is worth living and you are worth it? That your life is important and special for some reason? I ponder that a lot.

My Blurryface presents itself mostly through my social anxiety. It is going into a group of people and constantly overthinking every single thing you say. It is being so self-conscious that you are aware of the way you breathe, the way you stand, how you smile and how you walk. Blurryface convinces me that everyone in the room is directly fixated on me and me only. I know it is not true, I know it is just irrational thoughts that have no meaning, but as much as I want to believe that, they are a part of my life. I cannot do anything around other people, and even my own family, without Blurryface controlling my actions.

When I get socially anxious, everything about me changes. My voice changes, I choose my words more carefully, I do things more precisely. I become controlled by this extreme perfectionism that can literally stop me from functioning normally. Now yes, I’m social. I can be very social. Ask my friends; but sometimes I cannot pull myself out from behind the “mask of my disguise” and be who I really am.

Another thing I wonder is, how do you go back to the person you were before depression or anxiety or whatever you are dealing with? You know, where is that person? And sometimes I do not know if I will ever be the person I was. I do not remember the person I was. Blurryface is the person I am around everyone else. The person who most people do not know. The person who it forces me to be, the fake me, because I’m sometimes controlled by my brain. Blurryface often tells me no one understands. That even the people closest to me do not understand what I am going through, which to be honest, is hell sometimes. But I have learned you have to give people the chance to be there for you. If you don’t let people in, you won’t know if they might be struggling, too.

Lastly, how do you tell Blurryface, no? How do you close the door in his face and tell him to “go to hell”? How do you take a stand against thoughts of suicide, self-harm and depression? How do you stop those intrusive thoughts that control so many of us? I am not going to sit here and tell you I have the answer, because I do not. I am still looking for it. But I can offer this one thing: do not lose hope. Trust someone else who is not struggling, or who is and has survived, that there is hope on the other side of the wall.

Choosing to live and having hope when you are hopeless is pushing back against our own personal Blurryfaces. Even if you are suicidal every single minute, but you make it to the next hour, you are moving forward. It does not seem like it sometimes. It seems like there is no conceivable way anything can get better, but if you focus on the minute, and make it to the next, you moved forward. You pushed back your insecurities and you told your Blurryface, “No.” We’ve made it this far, we can go a little while longer.

I’m in the process of building a support system of people who love me and care about me. I am the luckiest person in the world to have the absolutely most amazing, caring and loving friends you could ever ask for. If it was not for them, I would not be alive today. I owe my life to them for sticking by me through this, and convincing me that it is worth it to live, it is worth it to keep fighting every single minute. Every hour. Every day. Even if I cannot believe it, I am told life is pretty good sometimes. That life gets better. That life somewhere, somehow, has joy and happiness and love. I do not have the pleasure of experiencing it right now, but I hope one day I can and that you can also.

As Tyler Joseph would say, “Don’t give up. Push through the droughts. Channel the inevitable disappointments into your craft. Break molds. Think. Create. And most importantly, stay alive. And in the meantime, make it about others. That seems to work. Stay strong. Live on. Power to the local dreamer.” That quote has given me inspiration to keep fighting many times, but I am one for pragmatism. So, my advice to you just this: tell Blurryface that you do not give a freaking damn what he thinks.

Lead image via twenty one pilots Facebook page

Originally published: February 27, 2019
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