Category Archives: bird

A guy I didn’t date but had a very strong connection in my first year at University.

Bird is the Word

I was first diagnosed with depression in my first year at university. (Guessing January 2005, which makes me 19.) I went to see the doctor because I wasn’t sleeping. I was upset and stressed about my exams and I asked for something to help me through. He asked what was bothering me, and I mentioned a situation with a boy that was I was really struggling with. The doctor gave me three sleeping pills, said that I was borderline depressed, and asked me to come back when the exams were over.

Bird and I were quite good friends. I really, really liked him. I didn’t want to jump into a relationship but one of my friends encouraged me to ask him out for coffee so that we could get to know each other. I did so, and Bird freaked out. He eventually found me later that evening and said he didn’t like me as more than a friend. I was confused. That wasn’t what I’d asked. But Bird had spoken to my friends to ask how he should let me down gently and that was the first time I had been shown respect by a boy. I didn’t sleep that night. I stayed up, crying and thinking because I was so happy. I’d found my first shred of self worth in years. Bird was amazing, because he cared enough to want to treat me the right way, even though he was letting me down.

The problem was that what Bird said and what he did were two different things. He said that he didn’t want a relationship with me, but he flirted with me constantly. We had a very physical friendship – he would grab hold of me and pull me close against him sometimes. Looking back I see the submissive in me was alive even then, because that used to turn me on. (Not that I understood what that meant then, because I was still playing at relationships then. I didn’t have anything approximating a physical relationship for another two years. I didn’t have my first orgasm until I was 22. I was late 23 when I first had sex. I’m still learning about my body responses!) It’s not like he flirted with everyone else either – he was socially awkward and I know that he struggled to talk to me about serious stuff a lot of the time.

My friends said that Bird liked me a lot. I protested that he said he wasn’t interested, but everyone else said otherwise. I got caught in the middle. What was I supposed to think? I remember talking to my best friend one time about it and he said “isn’t it obvious that he’s in love with you? Obvious to everyone but him.” I didn’t choose the best path of dealing. I chose to try and believe Bird, because that was the thing that made sense. If he didn’t want a relationship, then he didn’t. That was all there was to it. His flirting and his actions towards me must not mean anything sexual, and my friends were wrong. I tried to believe the lie.

And I ended up at the doctors. Because the lie ate away at me and I didn’t know my own thoughts. I couldn’t trust my feelings. I couldn’t trust people. I was tired and stressed. I would generally stay up til 3am of a night because I didn’t want to go to sleep. The doctor said that if I felt out of control I should come back and we would work out a plan to fix me. I was stunned. I’d never had a diagnosed mental health problem until then. I think I probably felt low a lot as a teenager but nobody had ever told me that it was depression. Depression was a genuine thing, not a rough patch. I cried and cried. I told Bird and he didn’t know what to do. He was little better than a child.

I’ve seen him since the end of that first year when he graduated and left and he generally doesn’t seem to have grown up. I don’t know what I really saw in him. We’re okay now, but it’s not without an edge of confusion that I see him. I still wonder exactly what was going on in his head. And I will never know. I don’t think he knew. We were still growing up and you make tons of mistakes trying to figure out who you are.

In lots of ways, I feel like our story hasn’t ended. Because that was just the beginning of my battle with depression. It is a battle which is ongoing, but every time it happens I get better at dealing with it.

To be continued….

Just Another Statistic?

New year. Funny really, nothing has changed since yesterday. It’s just a new day. But things feel different. 2011 has been and gone. It has been the most traumatic year I can remember. It’s been the year with the most changes, the most pain that I can ever remember. It has been the year that I have singularly failed at the most important thing I’ve ever done. The year that I tried my best at something that didn’t ultimately work. The first time I’ve ever conceded defeat and given up. I think perhaps that was my biggest lesson. I needed to learn to give up. There were lots of other things that happened and I feel I can finally look back on them without feeling they’re only a few days over. They’re now last year. That’s a big thing, right?

This new year brings me hope. This year Cefyn will leave his wife and we will be together properly. We will be happy.

See, even writing that looks pathetic. It’s fucking difficult to convince myself that this will all work out fine. Statistically speaking, men do not leave their wives to be with their mistresses. Why do I think that I will be different? What makes my love any more special than anybody else’s? Where can I have got this notion that the fact that other men don’t leave their wives doesn’t seem to apply to me? The more time goes on, the less sure I am that Cefyn is fully committed. I’ve been a wreck for some time and I haven’t been me and I don’t like it. When Cefyn was here on Friday I felt like me towards the end of the day. On Saturday morning I grinned and grinned and felt amazing. And it has worn off already and today is only Sunday. I frequently consider that Cefyn leaving his wife isn’t going to change us much. Am I really going to be happy if our situation is better? Am I ever going to really trust him? Am I not going to worry that he’s about to run back to her or find somebody else the moment my back is turned? Is this what is meant about a leopard changing their spots? Things are different. Cefyn is not the man I fell in love with. The man I fell in love with wasn’t fucking married.

The truth is that I cannot trust him until he’s done it.

I know this. He knows this. He can reassure me to the moon and back but his words are meaningless until he has backed them up. We’ve had this conversation a hundred times and I have tweeted and tweeted and everyone has reassured me that I am the one in a million, that I am different and that he is not bluffing and all we need is time and we will have what we want. Their reassurance makes me feel better for a few minutes, a few hours maybe, and then I am back where I started. I am going out of my mind with impatience, with insecurity. I explained to Cefyn on Friday that it is like the situation with Bird in my first year at university. Everyone was telling me one thing and he was telling me another and I had to choose the lie that I could live with. I had to make myself believe what my eyes told me wasn’t true in order to keep going.

Deep down, I know that Cefyn will go through with it. The point of not believing him is self preservation. If it doesn’t work I have no reason to be upset because I wasn’t expecting it. It’s easier to accept that he won’t change even though it hurts, because then I don’t have to consider the things that could have been incredible that I will never have.