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September 03, 2018

The Darkness That Is Depression

The following essay was written by adult performer Magdalene St. Michaels. In the past year, there has been a dark undercurrent in the adult industry, with the untimely passage of several young adult performers. Some of these individuals were lost to suicide. I never worked with them, or even met them. But if there were some magical way I could go back in time and talk to them before they decided to take their own life, I would have hugged them tightly, looked into their eyes and said, “I know what you’re going through. I REALLY DO. Please don’t do this. Tomorrow is another day.” I would have told them, “I know that darkness. I feel that pain. I feel that hopelessness … that anger … that sadness … that despair.” There is no joy. You can’t see anything good in your life. You feel there is nothing to look forward to. You ask yourself, What am I doing here? Why am I here? What good am I? Why am I alive? You think yourself worthless. You just want to escape. You want to go away … somewhere … anywhere but here. You feel isolated … so alone, so detached from anything, everything and everyone. You just want to disappear. It’s the only way to get away from all this pain. You feel like you are in a deep, black hole in the bowels of the earth and you can’t climb out. You feel like you’re traveling down a long black tunnel that goes on forever and you can’t see any light at the end of it. You have tunnel vision and you don’t see anything else but that. The only respite you have is when you go to sleep. You hope that you won’t wake up, but you do, and you have to face all these feelings all over again. I have suffered from depression since early adulthood. One day in 1986, I woke up and took 30 over-the-counter sleeping pills. I walked outside and crossed the street to the park opposite my apartment building. I sat down on the grass and I was sobbing so hard. People were walking by me and I didn’t care. I just couldn’t take it anymore. My partner at the time came looking for me. He said “What have you done?” I told him, as I was starting to feel dizzy. He took me to emergency. Fortunately, there was a hospital about a mile away. They admitted me, pumped my stomach and kept me under observation for a couple of days. Over the years I have had many, many, bouts of depression and have had more suicidal moments than I can count on one hand. I had one earlier this year. Episodes last for varying amounts of time. I just have to take it one day at a time and it’s always a fight. I literally feel that I am in a battle for my life. You cannot explain what this debilitating “thing” is and what it feels like to anyone, unless they themselves have had these exact same feelings and have gone through it. You feel so alone in those moments. You feel like you can’t talk to anyone … BUT … you should. Don’t suffer in silence. GO TO A DOCTOR. Talk to your family, husbands, wives, boyfriends, girlfriends, partners and friends. Reach out to someone. Don’t be afraid. Find a support group and make a note of the Suicide Hotline. Write that number down in large letters and put it somewhere that’s visible … like the refrigerator. I was saved that day back in 1986. If I had had a prescription for sleeping pills at that time, as I do now, I don’t know if I would still be here. In the times that are difficult for me, I talk to my husband. He listens, but I know he doesn’t quite understand. There ARE things to live for and this crippling, debilitating time will eventually pass. You just have to ride it out. Know that you are not alone. People often say that suicide is a selfish act. I personally don’t believe it is, although I get why some people see it that way. If people knew the suffering involved within that person’s soul, they might think differently. You really are in your own living hell. In my darkest times what keeps me going is, I think of my husband, my brothers, my friends and fans, who would be devastated if I were gone. I think of all my cats that rely on me to take care of them every day. While I take medication (I believe it helps a little), my depression is always there, lurking under the surface, but somehow I’ve been able to work my way through it. I’m still here. Others aren’t so lucky. In the first week of June this year, celebrities Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain committed suicide. Depression knows no bounds. It doesn’t care who you are. In a recent report issued by the Centers for Disease Control, suicide rates are on the rise in the United States, in almost every state. They are up 25 percent since 1999 and up more than 30 percent in half of them. I am going to end with this. It’s why I started this open letter in the first place. These performers are gone now. They wanted to end their suffering, whatever they were feeling and going through at that time. In a matter of minutes they made that fateful decision. You can’t take it back. In the end, it’s not the answer. The people who love you and care about you will be devastated. They will be heartbroken. They will miss you terribly. You will leave a void in their lives that can never be filled and their lives will forever change. I would have told them, “You DO matter. You ARE important. You ARE loved.” My heart goes out to these performers’ families and friends. Let us be respectful of one another. Let us be considerate toward each other. Let us all have open minds. Let us have empathy for and be compassionate toward one another. Let us be kind to one another. Life is short. This life we live, this journey of life, is not an easy one. We all need each other more than we know. Love one another. In the end, that’s all that really matters. There is a lot of loneliness out there in the world and quite often people don’t have anyone to talk to. If you are struggling with depression and need someone to talk to, please feel free to reach out to me. You should not suffer alone. I will gladly talk with you. You can find me on Twitter at @Magdalenexxx, or you can write to me at my email address: [email protected] Thank you for taking the time to read this. With love and light, Magdalene The National Suicide Prevention Hotline can be reached at (800) 273-8255. Find more information online here.  September is National Suicide Prevention Month and September 10 is World Suicide Prevention Day.

 
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