“You have to endure many things alone, even if you’re sick and crawling. That’s just the way it is.” Paraphrase from a statement by my sister E.

Usually I don’t ask for help unless I’m desperate, but the last few years have been extremely difficult; I lost my psychiatrist, had to endure an abusive professor, and due to a seriously pertinacious depression became suicidal.

I did tell several people about my struggles, but wasn’t believed because I am a very strong woman. Family, friends, and therapist began listening when I started to scream at them about how I felt.

And then sometimes I get the feeling I’ve unintentionally used others when trying to get help.

Once Owen and I lost our health insurance twice in one year due to layoffs. The first layoff I asked for some anti-depression medication from my psychiatrist to get me through two weeks. The second layoff I waited until I was very,very sick from withdrawal to ask for help from our primary care doctor.

Never do this to yourself. You may end up in the emergency room.

As a result I vomited up a significant amount of the medication given to me by the primary doctor. When I asked for a bit more, the doctor said never to ask again. I was too shocked to ask why. I believe he thought I was using him to get free medication. I haven’t seen him for a while, but when I do, I will ask about it.

What I’ve learned is no one owes me anything. I’ve concluded that E. spoke the truth. I decided to lower my dose and save one-third for emergencies. The next time I won’t need to ask anyone for help.