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I am sorry but how do you long term survivors do it?

#1
I am sorry but I need to ask this again, those of you who have been at this for a long, long time, how the heck do you keep at it....how do you stay alive? Seriously, I am 3 years into this shitty way of ‘living’, faking every moment of my existence and it is getting more and more difficult to keep it going. My husband proclaims his love for me every day and it breaks my heart. He deserves better.....he and my kids are the only reason I am still here.....that and my fear of eternity in hell.
 

Optimistic Goatman

The woolly enigmatic one
Staff Alumni
SF Supporter
#2
Well, i've been at this for 9 years, pretty near to 10 by now. I'm not sure if that would count as a long time, but it's been long enough for me to have reached a point where i feel like i hold myself together pretty well. And i started in very much the same place as you, where all i wanted was for it to be over, but hanging on by the skin of my teeth because my suicide would have broken my father.
The trick for me was simply that around year 4 or 5, through spending that time working on my ability to convey and process my emotions, i reached a stage where despite the fact that i still did and to this day still do sort of want to die, it wasn't and isn't a constant battle to resist that temptation, more a kind of ongoing background process. I'm not sure if that would be the same answer for everyone, but it definitely is for me.

It's constant work managing it, but aside from the occasional especially bad bout of it, which from what i've seen does happen normally, it's nowhere near the white-knuckle barely-holding-it-together struggle that it once was.
It's an ongoing process of improvement. Sometimes you find yourself wondering if you're making any progress at all, but you most likely are regardless. Plus it's one where the more progress you make, the easier it becomes to continue making progress, because you're learning to implement good mental hygiene, which seems more logical the healthier you become. None of that becomes apparent until a few years into it though unfortunately.
And a result of that is that early on, the people who are already well into that progress look like they somehow made this magical leap, or were always so healthy there's no way they could possibly understand where you're at now. But the truth is that all there is between where you're at now and where those people are at now is time and practise with self-acceptance and self-counselling.
 

Acy

Mama Bear - TLC, Common Sense
ADMIN
#4
Hi there. I’m sorry you feel so badly. First of all, since your husband says how much he loves you every day, maybe just accept that he means it! That is not a small thing. It is his choice to love you. He has YOU, he doesn’t deserve “better.” “He deserves better” sounds like depression talking.

Life has so many ups and downs, and if we get into a series of downs, it’s hard to think it could ever be better, we are good enough or even “enough.”

I started to feel better when I let go of some bad situations - I walked away from some things for a while, I let go of old hurts and started to look at my present and plans for the future...I started on a road of being the kind of person I like to meet.

I want dignity, grace and gratefulness in my life. Self-destructiveness just doesn’t cut it. So I had to find a new path and learn new ways to think. I dunno beyond that.

I had help...if you have a doctor or therapist, maybe raise this issue with them - that you are struggling.

I hope you feel better soon. Small steps. Life’s challenges are usually solved bit by bit.*hug
 

Dante

Learned how to make a custom title in only 5 years
SF Supporter
#5
Living with depression is like living itself, You start out helpless and useless, then with time you learn how to clumsily function whilst still needing others to do a lot of the work and help you along, and after a while, you learn to stand on your own and take the burden day after day.

For myself, I started in pain, learning my new reality, what depression is and how it works, then I learned coping mechanisms, then I just stayed stubbornly carrying on, and eventually, I learned how to cure it. Then I learned you cant "cure it" you can only fight it, then I learned more and more coping mechanisms, then I hardened myself to it and learned to stay on guard against it, now I simply live. I have good times and bad times and I am currently going through a bit of a rough patch (though nowhere near my worst times). At my worst I could, and did (still a point of warped pride for me) make a counselor cry and the slightest joke about suicide made her genuinely believe I would off myself without her taking immediate action, after over a decade now my lowest point is when it catches me off guard at night when I am alone and I just cant shake it until I pass out drunk early next morning trying to drown my emotions of misery and self-hatred, but most of the time now I just feel a weight in my heart, so steady and constant that I even forget its there sometimes.

Like all things, you either adapt and learn over years of practice to live with it, or you don't.
 

HappyKitty

•✮• SF's pet kitty, full of kittens & colours •✮•
#10
I agree with @Witty⭐️Sarcasm ⭐️ .

I’ll get used to it and normally I would say that I don’t give a fuck, but behind this is, I’m just all about taking baby steps. To tell you the truth, no one will heal or grow overnight or as I’ve always say, no one will be happy 24/7 and yet you will always have a choice to make. Its always YOU VS YOU and only you can fix you no matter how many help you got.

I would always choose hope, even in worse times like I’d find ways to seek support as many as possible then as a way to help myself, I’d probably find many reasons to live for before having reasons to live for myself. Like be it, I live because of my efforts, my stationeries, my friends, my nieces & nephews, my aunts that care, my kitties, grounding techniques and just basically anything or any little thing that would have me to keep looking forward to tomorrow or waking up during the day even.

EE95CE5F-698C-487C-AB4C-6AC7C82C5640.jpeg
 

Wispiwill

Well-Known Member
#12
I've been toying with whether or not I should reply to this. I've been dealing with this a long time so you'd think I'd have some words of wisdom - but I don't. I can offer thoughts I've had, things that sometimes work for me but nothing works all the time. I don't have ONE thing I do - I have several. And what works for me won't necessarily work for anyone else and, like I said, don't even work for me all the time.

One thing I do is that I have events to aim for. Not exactly dates although they can be. And I'll have several, not just one, so that as each one arrives, I've got another to aim for. Sometimes I can think about the ones further away - other times, they're too far and I can't. It's too much. Sometimes I'm 'one day at a time' and sometimes I can't do that. Sometimes all I can do is 'one day' because the 'at a time' is too much. I see the days ranging out in front of me in a never ending line and it's too much. I can't do it. Sometimes the worse thing I can think is 'one day at a time' because of that. But 'one day' - that can get me through and then it's the next day and maybe it's another day where I'm saying 'one day' and sometimes I can do more. Every day is different but they all feel the same.

It's something I've noticed recently. I have times when I'm ok and times when I'm not so ok and whichever state I'm in it's as though I've always been that way and always will be and it's hard for me to even recognise that there are times when I'm in the other state. Although, if I think about being in the less than ok state when I'm ok, I find it can drag me down but it never goes the other way.

Another thought I've had is this. I go for walks and I always go the same way. Sometimes when I walk I notice the trees, bushes and birds as I walk and it's really rather pleasant. Other times, I'm doing the exact same walk but all I see are the branches and how they could be used (I won't go into detail but I think you get the idea). Same walk. Same trees. The only thing that's different is me and my perception of things.

Sometimes I'll notice what I'm doing and sometimes I can bring my awareness back to the trees as things of beauty. Other times I can't. Sometime I can focus on a reason to stay. Sometimes it's harder. But I have a reason. It's mine. It's something you have to give yourself. It can't come from outside. It has to be yours - something worth staying around for no matter what.

If it helps, I also lie to myself a lot. And I mean - A LOT.

Ok, I've rambled on long enough. None of that is probably any use to anyone. I'm sorry for wasting anyone's time.

Short answer of why I'm still here? Because my need to hide what I am is too great for me to make any attempt that I don't think will have a serious chance of succeeding. Or maybe I'm just lying to myself and in reality I never will because I'm too much of a coward to do anything real.

Sorry. Take care.
 

Gonz

sick and tired of being sick and tired
#13
You just kinda... do.

You become numb a lot of the time, or maybe learn ways to make yourself numb. But, even when you can't and you're in the worst of it, time keeps passing and eventually one year becomes two, then three, then somehow thirty and the pain hasn't gone anywhere, it's just compounded on itself. Slowly, so you don't notice at first, but it just builds up and builds up until it becomes this near-backbreaking load that you can't get out from under.
 

extraterrestrialone

hi, guess who... its me...
SF Supporter
#14
• with fear of hell, I don't believe in it, though the entity that has been living in me most of my life always promised something basically the same, but I've always thought of it as something to fight - even if against all odds.
• my firm belief that the human animal - life itself - naturally seeks living and I cling to that belief. I think that this is much like god carrying you when life's difficulties become too much.
• believing that if I live to 100 and nothing changes I'll actually be no worse off. But if I live only until tomorrow and in my last hour I have a nice experience, I'll be way better off and will die happy. That to me makes holding on and keeping at it so worthwhile. And anyway, struggle and struggle already done might as well be never done at all if I stop midstream. Maybe the meaning to life is struggle. Then living my life is struggle and that's my life. If that's the case I might as well not expect anything "good" but if something happens to come along, love it and feel joy all the more.

That's how I keep going when so much tries to stand in my way.
 

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