Man Up

Dear Reader,

Do you want to know how pathetic I am? Do you want to know how stupid I am? Today I took the knife I carry around with me everywhere (for fear of loosing it) and scored a line down my arm. Worse than the normal lines I insist on cutting all over myself this was deeper, it wasn’t as long but it was definitely deeper. It bled a lot and good! I deserve that.

I’m so very angry at myself, I’m so very angry in general. I’m so angry at my inability to express my anger productively or sensibly, I always end up hurting myself. Punching something and bruising my knuckles. Hitting my head. But this time. This time, I wanted to draw blood I wanted my anger to literally pour out of me. So I did it, I cut my arm and climbed in the shower to be alone. And then because it was still bleeding when I got out of the shower so I had to put a plaster on it. It was fairly awkward putting a plaster on my own upper arm.

I’m an idiot. A god damn idiot. I don’t even know why I’m so angry. Well, actually I do.

Today I got told to “man up.”

That’s right. Fuck your emotional turmoil, fuck your problems, fuck your sadness, depression hatred of yourself. Man the fuck up, Elephant! I got told to man up by someone I deeply care about. Someone I thought was on my side. Someone I thought would always be there for me. In the last few days I have felt that nobody cares about my depression anymore. It’s no longer important. I’m always down so who cares? I’m not going to change, right? I will always be depressed and spaced out. Forget it. Move on. Be friends with people more interesting and life affirming. Fuck this Elephant, she needs to man up.

So I am. I will no longer discuss my depression in everyday life with anyone in person. I will keep my depression in a box that I only visit when I write here. I will super glue the mask to my face. I will make people happy. I will man up.

I will pretend I am fine because it was selfish of me to expect people to care about me or my problems, people have their own problems and they don’t need to worry about me. I considered sectioning myself today, I looked into it but I am too lazy to do it, and even if I wasn’t I would be too embarrassed of myself.

I have said that in the event of my suicide, it would be a call the police, call the press but please do not tell my friends situation. It’s probably pretty sad that, if my life ended by suicide I wouldn’t care who knew, except my friends, I wouldn’t want them to live with that. Or the guilt. But all of this talk about suicide isn’t making me “man up”, is it?

MAN UP Elephant! You idiot!

As Always,

The Elephant in the Room

49 thoughts on “Man Up

  1. This is exactly the problem with people who don’t understand the first thing about mental health issues. You can’t suddenly “pull yourself together” or “man up”. Depression is a serious illness that takes toll on mind and body – once the mind goes into reverse, so does the body.

    Keep fighting, you are not an idiot – by coming out the other side of this you can prove to be the bigger person.

    Good luck

    Liked by 5 people

  2. I’ve been told to man up by professionals before, don’t for a minute think you are pathetic. Simply posting your experiences and what went on today shows that you are anything but!

    Liked by 6 people

  3. People mean well and yet can say the most hurtful, least helpful things. Those that don’t experience mental health issues have NO clue the internal barriers that keep us from moving forward. I get your struggle, it sucks. I’m sorry you are going though this.

    Liked by 5 people

  4. I think writing about it is better than telling people about it. So many people have no choice but to let you down. They just don’t have it in them. Professional or not. Treasure the few who can hear these things and understand.

    Liked by 2 people

  5. That is the privelidge of the stupid, that they can asinine things like that without thinking, even worse they have no idea what there words can mean or do.

    You don’t have to “man up” for anybody ever, bloody hell it makes me so mad when people spew this crap, when will they realise that this is a illness, NOBODY wants to feel like this or live like this and all it serves to do is drive this black dog further underground, where it likes to play.

    I’m so sorry to know your going through this.

    Liked by 4 people

  6. Tough times that I know only too well, and having worked in the sector, I know the heartache caused to others if you follow through. You won’t always be able to see it, but people do care. You can get through this Elephant Soldier! 🙂

    Liked by 4 people

  7. (((Hugs))) from me too. I can only echo what others have said. You are not pathetic. In fact it was more than a bit pathetic to tell you to man up!
    It takes courage to live with depression. To carry that weight of pain around as we do, every day it is with us, is hard. To reveal it is also brave.
    To dismiss it, as they did…… takes no strength or courage to be flippant and dismissive.
    You’re not alone. Xx

    Liked by 4 people

  8. Dear Elephant in the Room,
    I can’t claim to fully understand what all you are feeling but can sincerely say I have felt as you have described in “Man Up”. I have shared very little with very few people and only did so because I was force to in specific situations. In my own experience I have found that some people don’t seem to care and have made comments that made me feel even worse about myself. However, I have also found that people who love me and do care sometimes say hurtful things also, but not with the intention to hurt me or give me the impression they don’t care. It was because it overwhelmed them as well, they just couldn’t deal with it and didn’t express it in a healthy way.

    You are not pathetic. You do such a wonderful job sharing and expressing your experiences. It takes a lot of courage to share experiences like this. I don’t want you to harm yourself. I can’t tell you not to harm yourself but I can suggest when you get the urge to, to try writing instead. Writing is a wonderful outlet. It may very well take the place of self injury and continue to help you and your readers alike. There are many people out here who do care. I do. The person who told you to man up obviously doesn’t truly understand what you are going through or does not know what do do to help. Try to forgive them and move past it if you can(I know that is easier said than done). They may have just said it out of pure frustration because they don’t know what to do to help.

    If there is ever anything I can do to help or you just want to talk, let me know and I will send you my email or phone #.

    Liked by 2 people

  9. I am sorry you’re in that space, Elephant, and I know how hard it is to get out. I don’t have much to say except what others have said. You’re not pathetic. You’re fighting demons. There’s nothing pathetic about fighting demons. There’s nothing pathetic about being beaten down into the ground and still trying to stand up and fight back. I can offer you my favorite comic on the subject. Hugs to you.

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Dear Elephant.
    I hate the term man up. I feel for you and I don’t think you should have to bottle up all your emotions. I know the shame you are feeling, and it is really hard to live with, but talking about it, and making people listen is what is going to help you. It would be important, in the event of your suicide for your friends to know it was not their fault, but it is also important that they know you love them. That you need them, that they are your best support system. We, your Internet friends, love and support you and I am sure your real friends love you even more than you know. Sometimes we come across difficulties, times where our depression makes us feel worse than normal. Just remember, if you feel like your friends aren’t there for you, ask yourself, “Is this my depression talking?” most times, it will be.

    Sending you all the love in the world,


    Liked by 2 people

  11. Dear Elephant,

    Here is what “man up” means to me. Jesus wept! If God in the flesh could show emotions, then so can we. If Jesus could face the cross and sweat blood because he wanted this cup desperately to pass from him, then the problems we face are no small matter to him. I’ve been told some version of man up by people who simply didn’t know how to help me. They didn’t understand that I neither knew how nor had the ability within myself. Bluntly, they never got close enough to figure out the source of my depression and I was so afraid of getting hurt that I kept good people at bay.

    Two things I know don’t work:
    Not sharing. Hope is out there, keep seeking and keep asking!
    Cutting myself never got at the pain. (I’m just getting to know you, but it seems clear that you want to stop and be able to express your anger and the rest of your emotions in a positive way.)

    What stopped me from hurting myself was love, overwhelming felt in every fiber of my being, love. It wasn’t produced by me, it came from an outside force who never gave up on me. I am lifting you up in prayer and I’m grateful that we can support you and love you here!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I’m so sorry. That’s one of the worst things someone can say to a depressed person. You have every right to be angry, and you shouldn’t feel the need to change how you act to please a person who doesn’t care about your feelings. People need to reach out for help in order to get it, and you need help, so you reach out. That’s a good thing. Maybe this person isn’t a good person to be reaching out to, so reach out to some other people. Isolating yourself and trying to hide what’s really going on isn’t going to make you feel better, it’s going to make everything worse. Keep reaching out. You ARE strong. You’ve made it this far. There’s nothing pathetic about that.

    Liked by 1 person

  13. I’m so sorry that you have to struggle this way. I too struggle with suicidal depression and some cutting. I want to let you know that I can relate. That is a big deal, since most people cannot relate to depression. Here’s a good example from me: a few weeks ago, I was telling a friend about how I was done. DONE. Ready to go ahead and end my life. And you know what her response was? “I struggle too, and this may sound trivial, but recently I’ve really been struggling with my confidence and my acne….” ACNE? Are you kidding me? I’m about to go fucking hang myself, and you are whining about your acne?

    So anyways, my point is, clearly this person who told you to “man up” doesn’t understand depression, doesn’t understand the fucking bloody war that is constantly taking place in our heads… But I can relate. Maybe not 100%, but at least somewhat. And that is important. You are not alone. That is what I love about blogging– knowing I’m not alone with this.

    Keep reaching out. You are clearly a lovely person, even if it is difficult to believe. Keep fighting on. Keep blogging. Clearly you are doing at least one thing right– using blogging as a coping skill– and that’s great!

    If you ever need a depressed person to talk to, I’m right here.

    Sending hugs and peace your way


    Liked by 2 people

  14. Make time for yourself when you don’t have to pretend that all is okay. Reiterating what others have said you are not pathetic, only articulate. You show strength in your writing. Consider that maybe your friend is hindering your recovery.
    “Man up” is as bad as “Smile”, or “Cheer Up”. Those that say the words are fortunate to not know or understand depression.

    Liked by 2 people

  15. I’ve had the exact same line. People don’t understand. Don’t waste time being angry at urself, u can’t take it back or turn back time. Writing is much easier than speaking and use it as much as u need to. I will keep a look out for ur posts. Putting on a mask is hard, I know I do it each day. Most days it wants to fall so I have to go and put it back on in the bathroom. Just remember ur not alone, the 38 comments prove that people care and understand just because one idiot didn’t. Sending virtual hugs xxxx

    Liked by 1 person

  16. It pisses me off when people say these things to other people: man-up. As if someone has made them experts on other peoples life experiences and hardships. If people can’t speak with compassion they need to learn to shut the hell up!

    Liked by 2 people

  17. I don’t think you are pathetic or stupid. I think you are the opposite of those things. It is excruciatingly difficult to talk about things like this. Especially around or with people who dont know what it’s like to deal with them, who don’t understand how they affect others.

    I’m sorry you had to deal with this person & that unfortunate phrase in particular. If nothing else, you have a large community connected to this blog, every member of which is happy to support you.

    Liked by 2 people

  18. Other people won’t understand you. I have cut myself for years. I have hurt myself for years. Whether no it be burning or cutting or hitting myself. I have scars byt one truly understands why i do it unless they went through it themselves. You are not alone. You are far from being alone. You belong to a great community. You escape through writing so keep writing ig it helps 🙂 not alone

    Liked by 1 person

  19. Someone needed to say what you just did. If you read my blog, you know that I have a big problem with the cliche “man up” or “get over it”. The list of things to do (karaoke, running, meeting new people etc) that people have suggested to me…that’s okay (it’s better than the cliches). At the same time, when someone that has no idea what it is to struggle like I do…like we do tells me how to overcome it, it’s not something that I can take that seriously.

    I have had the worst year of my life this year, but my depression was going on years before my mom died and I got my heart broken. I have been lucky enough not to lose that many friends, but I have lost some because of my “mental situation.” It’s not “sadness” or a “pity party”. Anyway…I am glad you wrote what you did. People’s attitudes toward depression really…depress me.

    Liked by 1 person

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