TW: Description of depression and suicide
So, one day you are walking along, minding your own business, when suddenly you trip and fall into this enormously deep pit sitting right in the middle of the path. No clue how it got there or how you failed to notice it until you had fallen in. You struggle and try to get out of the pit but the wall are too steep and crumbly and the ground under you is wet and muddy and you make no progress at all to get out.
So there you are. Sitting at the bottom of a dark pit, miserable, with no foreseeable way out. And then you hear a voice from above.
“Hey there stranger, you seem to have fallen into a pit, eh?”
“Help! Help I’m stuck and can’t get out! Please help!”
“Listen, what you need to do now is buck up and see the good things in life. The sun is shining, the birds are singing, the flowers are blooming, everything is just grand. Smile!”
And off they go, leaving you in the pit to contemplate how muddy the mud is and how little sunlight actually reaches you, and when you can faintly hear birds singing it is only a reminder of how far down and stuck you are. Then another voice.
“My good friend, how nice to see you down there!”
“Help! For the love of god I am stuck! Help!”
“Hey, I was wondering if you wanted to go hang at the mall today. We could catch a movie or something.”
“I’m stuck down here! I need help! Get a rope or something, please!”
“Dude, come on. Don’t be so down all the time. If you don’t want to come you could just tell me instead of making excuses. Way to not care about my feelings.”
And off they go. Shit. Now you are in a hole and you hurt your friend’s feelings and you kinda did want to go to the mall. And the mud is really cold. Your feet are starting to sink in and you start spending a lot of energy just to keep from sinking in so far they you can’t move anymore. It is exhausting. But then a voice that you know so well.
“Hey love! How are you today? I bought your favorite food for supper tonight <3”
“Oh thank god! Help please! I fell down here and can’t get out and I am sinking into the mud and I’m so scared that I might sink too far in and never be able to get out!”
“You know, you don’t have to get upset with me.”
“I’m not! I just need help. I love you.”
“Well you certainly have a funny way of showing, moping about down there in that hole. If you really loved me maybe you would climb out so we can go home.”
“I’ve tried! Really I have. The walls are too steep. I can’t do it. I need a ladder or something. Call the fire department!”
“Ugh. You aren’t the only one with problems, you know. Just earlier today I stumbled on a small dip in the sidewalk and stepped in a shallow puddle, but you don’t see me using it as an excuse to be all self-centered. You know what, fine. I’ll just go home and eat by myself. I hope you enjoy your little pity party down there.”
And off they go.
You are desperate and alone even though you can hear and even occasionally see people walking past the opening of the hole. You call out over and over but nobody seems to care or notice. And those that do give you trite little nothings.
“You should have waited till you were older to fall into a hole. Why didn’t you think before you fell in?”
“Kids these days, leaping into holes without any consideration for the rest of us. Grow up already.”
“You know, if I was in a hole, I would have a grand time of it. No rules or concerns to hold me back. I would make mud pies all day long. You are in such a great position.”
“Cheer up! If you smiled more and had some fun you would be out of that hole in no time!”
“Stop crying so much. You’re making the rest of us feel bad.”
At some point somebody hears you and actually listens as you cry for help. They run off and return later with a large crowd of strangers who stand around the rim of your hole shouting down more pointless little nothings and encouraging you. More than a few say things like “Think about your family! Being stuck in a hole is so selfish when there are so many people who love you!”
And eventually they all clear out and you are still in the hole and the sun is setting and it genuinely feel likes there is no hope at all.
The end. No, this story doesn’t have a happy ending. It doesn’t have a cheerful humorous joke to sum up the moral. You sit in the hole until you get tired of trying. You stop calling for help. You let yourself sink into the mud up to your knees and waist and chest. Your friends stop coming by. Your partner leaves you because it is too much trouble putting up with you. Your family stops by to admonish you for being down there and embarrassing them so much. And someday you do the only thing that would end your existence in the hole and pile the mud up over your face and suffocate, because as scary and awful as death is, it seems to be a better option than living the rest of your life miserable and cold and in pain stuck at the bottom of a hole unable to enjoy anything or feel anything. And that is the end of my little story.