I have been struggling with depression since a little over a year ago. I am out to my parents as gay but not my brother. I am extremely uncomfortable with who I am. I go to school on the east coast, and come back home to LA on my breaks. I am leading a double life. On the east coast, I’m out to practically anyone, and on the west coast, I am extremely selective. At school, it seems like all of my straight friends are dating or have dated, and I never have. I have zero self confidence and I desperately want someone to love me, a boyfriend. I know my parents love me, and my friends do too, but I need acceptance from the gay community. Because of this desperation, I have begun drinking heavily, one time I even blacked out at a gay club and was violated by a man in the streets. So desperate for a relationship am I that I constantly hook up with strangers. When I am with them my heart becomes so attached to them and I feel love for them but then when I leave, they never contact me again. Sometimes they do contact me again, but when I express my love I am instantly rejected. With each person, I give them my entire heart, and it is always broken. It takes me months to get over one person and the repercussions never go away. My idea of myself also deteriorates every time I am rejected. Another twist in the story is that I usually fall for men much older than I am. I am talking about men who are twenty to thirty years older than I am (I am nineteen). I think this is because I desperately need someone who can take care of me, who is mature, who has withstood the world. Recently, I have become involved with a man who is in his late forties, and for the first time, this man seems to genuinely care about me. He takes me out to dinner and pays for the meal, we watch movies at his place, and we keep in contact all the time. We do have sex, but that is only one small part of what we do together. We even go to church together. I have completely fallen in love with him. However, what pains me are two things: he is much older than me, and I am so sad that I have been left out of his life until now, and the second thing is that he lives in Los Angeles, and I am leaving for the east coast tonight. I am jealous of the people who are lucky enough to interact with him and who are friends with him. Why is it that I was born way too late? Today, an hour before I leave for the airport, I am practically in tears. I look at my life and I practically gag at how disgusting it is. I have a whole dictionary of adjectives that come to mind when I think of my life: sick, pitiful, slutty, desperate, hopeless. I have nightmares of people rejecting me. Those nightmares have become real over and over again. I feel like there is a black hole in my gut. I feel like I am losing a loved one. I was in the process of reducing my depression medication, and now I think I’ll have to increase it again. There was a time when I looked at subway tracks and high rise windows with the idea of killing myself. I have cut my hands before too. I’m asking for help. I need help. The psychiatrist I see on the east coast doesn’t help. He is too concerned with medication. I need a therapist. I don’t know what to do. I’m even afraid of the hour ahead when I board the plane. Typing this, my eyes are watering. Help, Help, help me please!
It takes a lot of courage to reach out and share your story. It sounds like you are going through a lot and it must be hard to think of yourself like that. There is nothing wrong with you are or the way you behave – you do not need to feel hopeless or pitiful. In fact, you should be proud of how strong and mindful you are. You have been able to recognize what you are doing and why you do it.
First of all, if you are thinking of suicide, please, please consider calling our 24/7 Lifeline at 866-488-7386. Also, please consider reaching out to someone you trust, to share these feelings with, preferably an adult like a teacher, family member (assuming it is safe), neighbor, or school counselor. You said you were ready for help and you deserve it.
It sounds like you base your self worth on how other men respond to you. So when they do not reciprocate your feelings, you feel worthless or not desirable. That would be really tough for anyone. Please consider basing your value on yourself – not the response of others who may have different motivations. It is really common for an LGBTQ person to need this outside validation due to a tough history. There is a book on the topic that seems to relate to exactly what you are going through: The Velvet Rage: Overcoming the Pain of Growing Up Gay in a Straight Man’s World.
No matter what you decide to do, please try to be safe. Being violated on the street is not something that would be easy to cope with. You do deserve additional support and the Rape, Abuse, and Incest Nation Network (RAINN) is a good place to start. You can find them here: http://www.rainn.org/ .
You have been through a lot and are struggled with depression. You mentioned that you think you would benefit from seeing a therapist in addition to a psychiatrist. That is a great idea and only further illustrates how strong and wise you are considering the situation. It could be helpful to find a mental health professional that would understand: http://www.glbtnearme.org/ can be used to find gay-affirming therapists in your area. If you cannot afford a therapist, there are other resources you could utilize such as a community center or school counselor.
If you’re looking to talk to other young people about coming to terms with your identity or others going through similar issues, you can check out TrevorSpace, our social network for LGBTQ youth and allies. It can be a great way to make friends and find support from all around the world. The address for TrevorSpace ishttp://www.trevorspace.org . TrevorSpace also has a discussion forum called Q&Q (Queer and Questioning) where you can post questions and discuss what you’re going through with thousands of other LGBTQ young people on http://www.trevorspace.org/topics.cfm?src=1 .
You mentioned that you cut your hands before which can be a way to deal with feelings, but it is important to think about some of the consequences. It can lead to infections, accidents, and permanent scarring. Checking these sites out can be helpful: http://www.helpguide.org/mental/self_injury.htm and http://www.selfinjury.com/.
Please consider going to an emergency room if you are thinking of suicide or at least giving our 24/7 Lifeline a call. You have clearly been through a lot and deserve additional support. Although it may feel like it sometimes, you are not alone. Things sound really tough now, but suicide can be a permanent solution to a temporary problem. Please reach out for more support.