As the title reads.
Now on most days, I’m a pretty nice person. I don’t turn down invitations by friends to go someplace or do something even if I’m broke. I send people links to articles and photos knowing that they’ll be happy to see them. I do favors and errands without asking for anything in return. I press the Like button on Facebook pages I’ve never even had a single thought for, just because a “friend” needs it for a contest and whatnot. And, even though they don’t ever reciprocate the action, I send long, cheesy birthday messages to people I care for a whole lot.
But this post isn’t about how I am one of those people who bothers to stop in front of an old woman in the street to give her some coins. This is about how I stopped talking to a long-distance friend because he’s clinically depressed. Which is basically what a douchebag does: Run off the minute she finds out that her friend has a huge problem in his hands. Way to go, goody two-shoes.
I’ve never been close to anyone who’s mentally unstable (I’m not sure if saying this will get me into trouble or not but if it does I apologize in advance). I know one other person who’s been diagnosed with depression but we’re more of casual friends, not bosom buddies. My closest friends are all right in the head, with no deep-seated issues that haunt them in the dead of night. Their problems are just as complicated as mine so hearing them talk about it doesn’t bother me.
Of course, he had to come around.
We met online, on a health-related site. I guess he was being friendly enough that day to add me and strike up a conversation out of thin air, and I guess I was in the same mood because I replied to him. Then he answered back. And then I did. Our conversation ended up being too long for that website so he found me on Facebook and we continued our talks there. We even chatted on Skype.
He’s an intelligent one, way more intelligent then I am. He has all these gargantuan ideas in his head that I have never come across, and talking to him is like conversing with a really cool, youthful encyclopedia. Sometimes I have to research about something he’s mentioned because for the love of me I can’t keep up with him, but there are times when he goes down to my level of mediocrity and talks about movies, music, our homelands, and the like. Everything was balanced.
Until he mentioned that he was depressed. Not the oh-my-god-I-watched-a-sad-movie kind of depressed but the this-has-been-going-on-for-weeks-and-I-need-medication-and-therapy-for-it type. Our last conversation had been mostly about his depression. Although it went on for a while, I honestly still don’t get it. As someone who’s never had mental health issues, I find it difficult to relate to and sympathize with people who have them. That friend of mine, he told me that talking about his problem doesn’t help. Meds make him feel terrible and therapy is bullshit. Hearing those things made me feel inadequate, helpless as a friend, so I haven’t logged in to Skype since then. He sent me a message over Facebook a few days ago and I haven’t responded; I don’t know if I still want to. I won’t have an answer if he asks why it’s taken so long for me to reply. I won’t have an answer if he asks if we’re alright. I won’t have an answer if he asks what I think about his depression. I don’t have words to tell him at all.
If I continue to ignore him, this isn’t the first time I’ll be doing it to someone. I’ve cut off friendships, both online and offline, by simply not talking to people anymore. For some reason, I find it very easy to do. A lot of people will feel guilty doing it but I don’t. I’m not the type to be sentimental over a relationship no matter how long it’s been going on; it’s just how I am, I suppose. I’m a dick and there’s nothing anyone can do about it, not even myself.
I guess this is another -1 to my ever-shortening list of friends.