Self-Blame and the Pressure to Feel Joy


HP Love 2Imagine you had to take a five-year-old with ADHD with you everywhere you went: to work, in the shower, to the grocery, on your run, out with friends. He was always anxious to leave and get back to his xbox at home. On the way to the store, he’d ask, “How long is this going to take?” As soon as you put one bag of produce into your cart, he’d say, “Can we go home now?”

It’s like that with my death thoughts.

They aren’t necessarily suicidal ideations. There is no plan of action. Just an urgency to be relieved of the chronic pain I feel, a rush to get somewhere that doesn’t require so much effort to get through a day or an hour.

I’ve had this five-year-old following me my whole life, although there have been periods where he occupies himself nicely and isn’t too much of a nuisance. Ever since last summer, though, the bugger has been jacked up on gummy bears. “When can we go? When can we go? I don’t want to stay!” He doesn’t care if I’m in the middle of something. He doesn’t care about anything but getting home, or somewhere other than where he is.

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Therese Borchard
I am a writer and chaplain trying to live a simple life in Annapolis, Maryland.

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9 Responses
  1. Michelle Rapkin

    Thank you so much for your incredibly honest, transparent articles. You have doubtlessly helped so many more people than you’d ever imagine, and many by this article alone. You are a gift and a gem.

  2. Betsy

    Oh my sweet, sweet dearest, I am so sorry. I had no idea until now how it feels. I wish I had a magic wand and took away all the horrible pain you feel.

    I wish I could come and give you a big hug & let you know how truly beautiful you are for sharing how you feel. This helps me understand the pain one suffers & I am sure others who feel like you know they are not alone. You are so very brave to share this with your readers.

    Please, please don’t give up your struggle to be well again.

    I have been praying for you, my daughter & all those who suffer from depression.

  3. ‘Noggin’ 🙂 You are amazing. Thank you for such an honest, well written article. I feel that way too. I wonder way too often ‘Is today the day?’. Got a VERY strange noggin, me.

  4. New Liz

    Hi. I have had probably one of the worse weeks of my life going through a break up with my partner of 11 years and we have a 5 year old. It is the saddest of times and IG has been coming on for a long time. Does not make it hurt any less. My death thoughts have been so numerous as well. Just too much pain to feel. This article is exactly how I feel and reading it makes me feel less alone. Thank you for your amazing words and you truly are a soul healer through your own pain. I wish you peace. Liz

    Sent from my iPhone


  5. Hi Therese, Just wanted to say I have been reading your stuff diligently for several years now and you have been a real encouragement and inspiration to me. Thanks for all you do and the words that you’ve shared!