I Would Rather Live

I was watching Prozac Nation and a line reminded me of something someone said to me a few months back. I have yet to share this incident on this blog because I felt overwhelmed with shame and then forgot about it, for the most part. I was upset and was not being the nicest to this particular person. This person looked at me, with tears in their eyes, and said, “I would rather die than feel the pain you feel every day.” That shut me up. A few thoughts went through my head.

“No one would want to be me.”

“Does this mean I should kill myself?”

“Would someone else kill themselves if they were me?”

Even while experiencing this shame I thought about how this statement also made me feel stronger. I go through emotional pain every day and I survive it. I have been in worse pain. I actually don’t see myself as someone who is in a lot of pain.

What I feel like this person’s statement might actually be saying is, “I would rather die than feel.” Many people seem to be afraid of feeling negative emotions and when they do feel them they do not know what to do with them. Avoidance is the only option for many. I do not like feeling everything I feel and I do try to avoid it but that day I stop feeling anything is that day that I hope I do. Pain serves its purpose just as much as happiness. I want to feel both in respectable amounts. Without this pain, I would not have the fire inside of me that drives my passion for social and personal change. I wouldn’t be me without this pain.

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