I can’t really be mad at you because I understand how you feel too well.
We’ve had this on again, off again thing going on for five years. That’s a really long time.
Every time we’ve been together for a long time, you’ve eventually gotten really depressed.
I know that you’ve been struggling with depression for way longer than you’ve known me.
I know it’s not my fault.
But, it doesn’t change the fact that something about being with me for a long period of time makes it come back.
Maybe it’s just as simple as the fact that we’re too different.
Maybe we just can’t give each other what the other one needs.
When we first met, and the depression would set in, you would take it out on me.
You would get cold, and distant, and sometimes really mean.
I would eventually get so hurt that I would leave.
Then a month later, you’d reach out again. You missed me, you needed me around, you said.
Later, you stopped taking it out on me. You would stay kind, you would treat me well.
You would start internalizing it instead.
And eventually, you would get too depressed to be with anyone. You would want to isolate yourself.
You would want to be completely alone. So you’d leave me instead.
You were just depressed, you needed to disappear for a while, you needed a break, you said.
The last time I left I was gone for three months. That’s the longest we’ve been away from each other since we met.
I really thought it was over. I was sure there wasn’t anything left.
But you came back to get me. You were wrecked. You told me you loved me.
You told me you couldn’t stand the thought of walking away and throwing away what we had.
You said you wanted to be together. You said you thought I was it. You said you thought about marrying me.
You told me that you would respect my decision, but you hoped you’d see me again.
The air was heavy with regret and with heartbreak.
I thought and I thought for a week, after that. I thought about the sweater you were wearing when you said that.
I thought about how soft your eyes looked when you spoke.
I thought about the way you sat by me and held my hand. Handed me your heart and trusted whatever I did with it.
About the way the lamplight cast shadows of your lashes on your cheek.
And I came back.
And now, four months later, here we are again. You’re so depressed that you don’t leave the house
unless it’s to go to work or go grocery shopping. You’ve been getting worse and worse.
Don’t think I didn’t notice.
I didn’t see you for a week, and today you texted me to tell me what you’ve told me before:
I can’t be with anyone right now.
I feel like we need to take a break.
I just want to disappear for a while.
And I get it. I understand. I can’t be angry with you. I know that sometimes we want things for ourselves
and our mental health has other plans for us.
I just wish I could trust you, but I know that you can’t even trust you when you’re not in control.
It’s not your fault.
I wish I knew how to support you better. I wish I knew how to help.
I’m afraid that when you’ve finally beaten this again, and you reach out to me again, I won’t come back.
Because I’ll know that even your best intentions can come crashing down and leave me alone again.
But the thing I’m probably the most afraid of, is that I will come back.
That I won’t be able to stop.