Squandered Opportunities

Discussion in 'Suicidal Thoughts and Feelings' started by Grays, Feb 9, 2007.

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  1. Grays

    Grays New Member

    My life isn't that bad, really. I don't even know if I'm suffering from clinical depression, because I do enjoy myself occasionally--usually it's playing games. Real life, though, seems far less worthwhile.

    In high school, I had a 3.98 GPA, was on the debate team (50+ awards), NHS, news team, you name it. I was content. College has been nothing but a downward slant, over the three and a half years I've been here. My grades have been steadily declining. Over the past year or so it's been especially bad; I simply don't go to class anymore. I don't do homeworks. Sometimes I show up for exams, and I've gotten really decent grades when I crack the book a few hours before an exam. I've come close to academic probation and I've completely lost my scholarship, but I still have a chance of graduating if some second wind of motivation magically picks me up from where I'm at and whisks me off to a life of productivity.

    The thing is, I want to do productive things, but don't. I have a web community that I founded and did some coding for (I'm a comp sci undergrad), and I'm always thinking of things I'd like to add--but never do. Every time class time looms, I convince myself I have to go, until the time comes, and I rationalize my way out of it ("I don't have to go today, I can catch up later."). I feel like I'm a voice trapped in the corner of my mind, wanting to take pride in my work, wanting to be productive, and just lack the willpower to do it. Anything that I commit to, even if it's fun, suddenly feels like work when I have to do it, and I put it off.

    The only time I'm really ever happy (or at least content) is when I'm lost in a game. Off and on for the two years of its inception, I played World of Warcraft to varying degrees of obsession. (Even accounting for months when I swore off it, I averaged five hours a day for two years.) Before that, it was Halo PC. Really, it doesn't matter what it is--digital entertainment of any kind is an escape. If I swear off of one, I'll find another to soak up my time. I recognize that it's an addiction as serious as drug or alcohol abuse, because it totally ruins my life, absorbs all of my time, and makes me hate living in the real world. Because in the real world, my life sucks, I'm never going to amount to anything, I'm going to disappoint all the people that love me, and I'll eventually waste away as a broke, creepy fat balding guy who works at some Kinko's and makes enough money to pay the rent and the MMO subscription.

    A good online friend who went through a suicidal experience wanted me to seek professional help, so I did. I went to see a doctor, who did a blood test, and gave me some sample antidepressants to take for a few weeks, which did absolutely jack. The blood test came up negative. There's nothing chemically wrong with me, I'm apparently just inherently sad and pathetic. (Forgive my indulgence, but self-loathing has become somewhat of a pastime of mine.) My father wants me to go so see a psychiatrist.

    I've lost track of the number of times I've tried to pull myself out of this. I always promise myself new resolutions, and my "good period" where I'm active and happy will last anywhere from a few hours to a few days at most, then I'm back to normal. (Normal is depressed when not playing a game, content when lost in a virtual world.)

    I've only really gotten serious about suicide the last few months. Sure, the thought occurred to me many times over the last few years, but now I've found myself doing serious research into methods, checked gun prices, looked up whether certain chemicals could be legally purchased, that sort of thing. I wrote a frustrated suicide note to try to get some weight off my chest, but that only made me feel worse. Would I do it? During lucid periods, no, but I'm writing this in one of those periods, when I can actually step back and reflect. If I had a gun on-hand during times of crisis, when the weight of my crappy life crashes down on me and I feel like a complete failure to the human race? Yeah, when one of those closes around me, I could see myself blowing my head off. It wouldn't be hard, and I've wanted to before, I just didn't have a gun.

    What do I want from life? Simple--I want to enjoy doing work, enjoy doing productive recreation, and have the willpower to do it. As weird as it sounds, I hate enjoying games. Even while I'm on autopilot playing Civ 4, or Sims 2, or whatever else, I'm torturing myself with pangs of guilt--I should be out doing something else. There's so much potential on the horizon, but I've trapped myself in a cage of my own unshakable behavior. I have to summon immense reserves of willpower to do simple things like go to the bank, get a haircut, or get groceries. I've had periods where I've gone for weeks--longest was two weeks, I think--subsisting on nothing but ordered pizza because I just didn't feel like getting to the grocery store--and it was right across the street from my apartment. (I can only imagine how pathetic that Papa John's guy thinks I am.)

    My life isn't that bad, but I've squandered so much, and every attempt I've made to change my behavior has failed. I don't know if I suffer from clinical depression; I've got more than enough symptoms to justify to myself that I do (long periods of self-destructive behavior), but then again, I've got enough to justify that I don't (I do feel happy, or at least content, when I'm playing a game, and more so if it's multiplayer).

    I loathe melodramatic speeches and hollow threats, so I will simply state that I mean this in full seriousness. I have not tried to kill myself. I know that if I do, it will not be an attempt, because I'm not an idiot and can properly aim a firearm if I purchase one. If I attempt suicide, I will be dead, period. Every day I contemplate it more, and do more research on how to go about it. That's part of why I'm posting here. This is my gathering of opinions (or pity party for myself, you might say.) But understand that I won't be indulging myself with any petty attention-getting suicide attempts.
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 9, 2007
  2. carbon

    carbon Member

    Though I'm only a senior in high school, I can relate to your story almost entirely. I'm also on the debate team, love video games, have dropping grades, etc. I could continue with a checklist, but that'd come across as boring and insincere. You've worded it far better than I could, so I'll just say that I meant it when I said I can relate almost exactly to your story; every paragraph.

    I'm not very good at writing replies (ironically though, cross-exs are my strong point) so I'll just keep it simple. When I picture myself 4 years down the line I see myself in the situation you're in. On days I feely especially bad I plan out killing myself this summer when I turn 18 to avoid just what you've described. I don't really see much in life for me down the line, and the reasons not to kill myself seem to dwindle daily. I too would be happy to be lost in a video game for the rest of my life if only the pleasure of doing so wasn't killed by my hatred at the waste I would be/am becoming.

    You've pretty much written out my life and the likely future in one post. I hope that you feel better soon, and maybe for a little longer than usual. Whatever you do, good luck man. You really struck a nerve with me, and I hope things start looking up for you.
  3. TG123

    TG123 Well-Known Member

    Hey Grays,

    Thanks for sharing that, I think it too courage to admit struggling with these things. I sometimes feel worthless about not doing more to help others, I want to do more and I should but I don't.

    I believe that you were created and are loved by God, and that you can achieve much in your life. After putting my faith in Christ I began being more active and doing more to help others around me, and I found a source of strength that enabled me to do that. Having said that, I can and should be doing a lot more.

    What kinds of things would you be interested in doing? Just out of curiosity. Sports? Hanging out with friends? Helping people?

    I hope you stay on here, it was interesting hearing from you and I hope you'll write back. Keeping you in prayers.

    Cristo Vive!
    - Tomasz
  4. Grays

    Grays New Member

    @carbon: It's comforting to know that you can empathize with my situation, and yes, if you don't find a way to change (as I'm trying to) then you'll likely end up in my same situation. High school is structured; you're in the building from morning to afternoon and you go home to a place where your behavior is observed (or at least noted) by adults. College is a place of freedom, where classes are practically optional (and spread throughout the day) and you have no oversight over how you spend your time. What happened with me is that I sat down my freshman year and said "Cool! No one's going to care if I spend all night playing Halo PC!" This is how it began. NO limits means nothing holds you back except self-control, and if you don't have it (like I didn't), then you can lose yourself easily. I have totally lost faith in my ability to muster willpower and self-control enough to pull myself away from the computer.

    @TG123: I appreciate the sentiment, but I should probably tell you that I am agnostic. (My definition, which you won't find in a dictionary, is an individual earnestly seeking to discover whether God exists, either by evidence or personal methods.) I could elaborate on the details, but I've written essays and articles on the details in the past, and it would take up far too much space; suffice it to say that the items I identify as roadblocks against objective belief in the Christian God are methodically constructed, and have a large volume of thought and argument behind them. (Remember, I was on the debate team.)

    That's not to say that I haven't tried to have a relationship with God. In fact, very recently, through extensive prayer and a recommitment to God after years of doubt, I believed my life was going to turn around. I was sure it would work out. I was happy. I believed (and still do, to a point) that God would not give up on me. The end result: an abnormally long period of happiness and activity, maybe two and a half weeks, before I sank back down to my sinful, depressing existence.

    The question of whether I believe in God now is not one I can readily answer, in other words. I really want to, but the things I ask for are simple--willpower to change, the ability to resist the things that hold me down so I can live as God wishes me to--and time and time again I am refused these things. I grew up in a very active and profoundly alive Baptist Church. I can quote the entire path to salvation from memory, and am a born again Christian, though whether I am now depends on how you interpret the Bible regarding whether you can fall away from being Christian. I know how to take the first steps to establish a relationship with God, and I did them. I just thought I'd get some help in return, and I fall right back into the pit where I'm at, with nothing.

    So, sorry if I'm a bit dismissive when you mention God.
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 9, 2007
  5. Grays

    Grays New Member

    I suppose my story's a bit long for many to read...
  6. iamadam

    iamadam Member

    I'd have to agree with the long prognosis theory. Any chance of a condensed edition for those of us addicted to Sauvignon Blanc :)
  7. Grays

    Grays New Member

  8. TheBLA

    TheBLA Well-Known Member

    Dang Grays, reading your thread made me more depressed. I mean no offense at all, man. I myself can't really see how you did so well in high school and are struggling in college, of course, I was a loser in high school (never joined any clubs, no honers, no friends, nothing) and so am still in college anyways. Maybe I'm frustrated that I'm more fucked up and pathetic than you, FAR MORE, and that I wonder why you are in such pain and struggling now? I dunno, reading this thread makes me more depression but of course, everyone else is better than me so never mind. Sorry.

    I've squandered like 100X way more in my life than you ever will Grays, I know that isn't going to make you feel any better so why the hell am I writing this? I dunno. I just know that your life is very good compared to mine, maybe if you got to look at my life very detailed, you'd feel much better? Ack, all I'm doing is making myself feel more worse and inferior.

    I dunno if I feel a bit upset that I am far worse off than you Grays and that you are so miserable and thinking about suicide and whatnot when you are so much better off than me and that I should keep thinking about blowing my head off with a gun, not you, but this isn't making you feel any better, might even be antagonzing you and I apologize for that. Sorry for this stupid ass post.
    Last edited by a moderator: Feb 10, 2007
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