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Fear stalks the wounded mind

Greetings all,

Today I am almost sick with fear.

Yesterday I received some bad news. My boss finally told me that he was disappointed at my performance in my job. He said he had expected better based on my interview and that the company was in a critical phase now, it could afford nothing less than fully committed, dedicated employees. He also warned that people who did not demonstrate a clear commitment to the company might be let go.

I told him how my depression was a clinical illness, but he appeared dubious. "I don't quite trust this modern medicine" he said, "you are so young, and your career is beginning. Why should you be depressed?" I mentioned that I had had family problems, but he was puzzled; if I had a bad family, moving out of my parents' house should end depression, not start it, he said. I tried to say that my medication would take several weeks to take effect, but it was clear he wanted results much sooner than that.

I am deathly scared of losing my job. If I do, with a bad reference, finding a new job will be difficult indeed. If I declare myself disabled due to depression (it is doubtful whether a physician would go that far anyway) I could receive a disability allowance, but that would reduce my income by nearly two thirds. I would have no alternative but to move back into my father's house. Those who have read my previous posts can imagine what a nightmare that would be for me.

Nor is that all. Lately I have detected signs of diabetes. It will take some weeks before I get the results of definitive tests but already the horrible suspicion is on me that I may have diabetes. This is a prospect worse than death for me. My father lost everything to diabetes - his eyesight, his independence, his career, his health, his mobility, and everything he had dreamed for. I grew up codependent around his illness, and to come with the same debilitation is more than I can bear.

I wonder if this current outbreak of depression is not what caused the attack of diabetes. I feel terrible for having wallowed in self-pity and allowing myself to go down. I should have remained strong. I should have gone on a diet years ago as my parents advised and not stubbornly continue to pig out.

Now everything I have hoped for, everything I have planned, everything I looked forward to is crashing in ruins. My mind is a swelter, my head is pounding, my eyes are glossy with fear, and my heart is beating rapidly. What am I going to do?

Once again, life is beginning to look unendurable. Thoughts of suicide are returning.

Oasis, Aug. 29, 1996.