How much do feelings actually matter?

Do I have problems with depression or am I just a moody brat? Is asking myself this question already implying I’m obviously not dealing with something greater?

It’s no lie, I’ve always been a bit of a crier, but the minute high school started, I also started having these intense breakdowns at LEAST once a month if not more. Originally they just consisted of crying over homework and struggling to make friends, but eventually I just would cry over little things that just DIDNT matter, or didn’t really bother me when I really thought about why I was crying.

This past year things got intense. The breakdowns were way more extreme and sometimes almost seemed like a tantrum. Sometimes I would be screaming and crying home alone because I couldn’t think of what to write for an essay. I just started feeling like I was trapped and alone and all I wanted was to just tear off my own skin with my own two hands. Things were bad. I didn’t feel like I had any good friends at the time, and my family new about my meltdowns but just brushed them off as me being a perfectionist brat.

February was the last one I had before a sudden five month gap. It was Valentine’s Day, and I went all out for my friends like usual, we usually all did silly little gifts and stuff—but this year I was the only one. It’s not like I really cared and I was fine most of the day… but then I got home, and I sobbed. It felt like I was so alone and so empty inside and I just couldn’t bare the thought of existence. It was probably the third time I thought about just—leaving the earth, but this time I actually stared at how I would meet my fate and the only thing that stopped me was just the thought that I’d force my parents to pay a crap ton for a funeral after they’ve spent so much on me already.

That day a boy who I had only talked to once before (commenting on a sad sc story to give support a week before) practically saved my life. He commented on a picture of a cake I made for my friends and from there we talked late into the night about goofy little things. I have never been more grateful for such a silly conversation in my entire life.

That was the last time I broke down. Until recently. The months following that breakdown I was kind of numb. I somehow made new friends and things were pretty GOOD for the most part. But it was strange because half the time my laughter was fake and forced and the crying was just replaced by an intense lack of empathy… Crying at volleyball practice turned into just being louder on the court and just NOT caring sometimes…

A week ago I had a meltdown for the first time in about five months. I locked myself in my room and proceeded to sob for two hours, screaming into pillows, trying to peel off my skin with my own hands… I eventually thought about hurting myself… But I was too afraid that if someone saw they would ask questions… I did end up with a few random scratches on my arms that night from one of my sharper beauty tools, but when a friend asked I could easily dismiss it as an intense battle with a tape dispenser.

Now I would NEVER actually have the guts to take my life—let’s make that clear. And who hasn’t thought about dying before? It’s not like that’s unusual… is it? I wouldn’t know. Everyone I know seems to have depression or sever anxiety… My brother was diagnosed w it when he was 14, two of the guys in my new friends group are depressed, one girl has panic attacks once a month, another girl REFUSES to eat… I feel like I have no one to talk to because my problems will never compare to theirs because they’re all diagnosed or have divorced parents or have alcoholic family or are poor or a thousand different problems that I DONT have.

I feel like my problems aren’t valid. Half the time these “meltdowns” are simply triggered by jealousy. A friend being better friends with someone else, a few people hanging out without me because I live on the other side of town, missing a ball during practice… Things that didn’t REALLY bother me that much, but they somehow shoved me into this pit of darkness full of self hatred and hopelessness and loneliness and just utter defeat. I felt completely worthless. And there was no one I could go to.

There was a point in time about a year ago where I thought about bringing up these feelings with my doctor during a basic checkup… but the lady seemed so rushed to see everyone that I chickened out because I didn’t want to BOTHER her when she had so much work to do.

I still have no idea how to address these feelings that have suddenly returned. The apathy is gone, the tears have returned—at least once a week… People say I can TALK to them, that they’re THERE for me… but it doesn’t feel like I can when I know that my bratty tantrums are nothing compared to their Major Depressive Disorder, especially since I had that long period where most of my depressive symptoms just… disappeared for the first time in years…

I’m just not sure what to do with myself, especially since everyone just assumes I’m the insensitive ray of sunshine of the group…

Man, some of what you said really resonated with me. Obviously we have different experiences as everyone does but I have definitely felt some of those feelings and asked myself the same questions before. And currently! Ever get a feeling that you can’t pin down? Like you can’t even figure out what you feel, much less where it came from or if you should listen to what you feel or just shove it down and ignore?

Yeah, I mean whenever I overthink what I’m feeling I just get confused because sometimes I feel like I SHOULD be happy, but these days I can’t tell when it’s genuine or just acting like I should be… And sometimes I just have no idea why I get so overwhelmed from such small things.