Everyone Needs to Talk

Natalie - Lake Oswego, Oregon
Entered on January 26, 2009
Age Group: Under 18
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“Do you like being emo?”

It’s one thing to joke about being “goth” with friends, but it is another thing entirely to have your best friend ask you that- and mean it.

This past summer, I experienced being what stereotyping people would call “emo.” The entire summer I spent my time alone in my house or crammed in with my parents and six-year-old cousin. I think being out of touch with the real world led me to become anything that would be more interesting.

The experience has brought me to my belief: no matter how silly, embarrassing, even difficult it seems, everyone needs to talk about their feelings. You’ve heard it before, everywhere. School counselors, teachers, parents, everyone tells you the same thing, and I used to brush it off just like anybody else would. That’s changed.

I’m like Dr. Suess’s “Grinch” in that I’ve considered many potential causes for my condition. The phrase “bored to tears” might be taken literally here. With no happy distractions, only hurtful thoughts flooded my mind. It could be my obsession with a German band whose music might be considered depressing. It could be that I was tired of being the same old me and wanted something different or new- anything different or new.

Of course my parents noticed a severe transformation in my behavior (I had previously been someone often found bouncing off walls and gulping down anything caffeinated) and I pulled away from them as much as possible. My separation from them might have been caused by my not wanting the fantasy of “different” to be ruined. Maybe I feared hurting them. Whatever the reason, I would not discuss my problems with anyone. My mom would ask, “What’s wrong, honey?” or, “Do you want to talk about it?” The more anyone tried to help, the more I shied away, and the bitterer I became.

You have to understand that writing about this still brings me pain and, strangely, embarrassment, as this will only be the second time I’ve told my story. The first time- and the reason I can confidently write this paper- occurred a month or so ago when I decided to confide my secrets with my best friend.

Her name is Sima and she is undoubtedly the best friend I have ever had. As soon as I started pouring out my story I felt relieved, lighter. I don’t have the responsibility of having to never slip up and hint about my past around her. Now I can easily say that, because I had the confidence to share what went on, my life has become much happier and more carefree.

I agree with what Charlie Brown says: everyone needs to talk.