This Is What My Brain Looks Like on Depression

Confession: I’m struggling with depression.

{Get over yourself Michelle, your life is great! You just want attention}

It’s really hard to write when I’m depressed. So after months of avoiding writing, I figured I should try to write about what it feels like to be depressed.

Trigger warning: depression, suicidal ideation.

{Why are you even bothering to write this? Why would anyone care about how sad you are? Everyone else is fighting their own battles and yours aren’t even that bad}

depression

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How I Helped Kill the Personal Essay

2 years ago, I achieved minor internet fame for publishing a personal essay on XoJane. You can Google my name if you want to read it, but just be warned that it’s full of of intimate details about me that just might scar you for life and if you’re a cat lady, you’ll never look at your bedsheets the same way again.

internet fame
Thanks for the internet fame, Donut!

If I am related to you by blood or marriage, please do not Google my name and stop reading now

After my personal essay was published, it got way bigger than I ever expected. I should’ve known that it’d spread like wildfire since it had everything the internet loves: cats, a vagina, body horror, and the opportunity for the kind of voyeurism that leaves you feeling all high and mighty because you’d never let anything like that happen to you.

It’s cool, I get it. I ain’t mad. But god damn it’s stressful to wake up one morning not realizing that your piece has been published until you get a phone call from a friend saying “Hey, um, I think they’re talking about your sex life on DC101…”

Cue full-blown panic attack.

Now that I’ve had a few months to process the insanity that comes with sudden internet fame, I finally have the mental energy to respond to some of the most common questions I get about my piece. Seriously, this thing WILL NOT DIE and writers and TV producers still contact me on a pretty regular basis asking for comments. I gave 2 interviews the week that the story ran and I vowed never to do it again: There’s nothing scarier than giving up your autonomy and letting a stranger control the way your story gets told.

So here are my answers to a few of the most common questions I’ve gotten.

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Practical advice for the old at heart