Black Women Aren’t Supposed to Talk About This — But She Did

Acomeaux-1As Black women–strong Black women–there are some preconceived notions about what is expected of us. We’ve got to always have it all together, be able to take care of home, keep a man, be successful and raise a family, all without anything as simple as a hiccup.

But life has a way of showing us differently and that yes, we as strong Black women are human and can benefit from help too.

Writer, speaker and a member of the collective, Six Brown Chicks,  A. Comeaux knows all about this. In a recent piece on Chicago Now she explained how depression took over her life.

 

“I deal in extremes,” writes Comeaux. “So my fall was no slip, it was hard, great and devastating on all accounts. My fall wasn’t about love, sex, or money.”

She continues below:

What I lost was my peace of mind and it nearly cost me my life.

Mental instability is on the taboo side of the fence for a Black woman like myself; it’s that thing ‘they’ struggle with, not us.

Far too many of us are told to get a drink, get laid or pray our way through life’s tough spots.

While any combination of those quick feel-good fixes can provide some relief, the root of the struggle must be addressed.

For me, anxiety and depression lurked under the surface for years, masked by lovers, by bottles of “social wine” and by the bedside alike. For years I was NOT okay, but I maintained a façade that “all was well.”

In fact I was ready to quit it all and never surface again.

Depression is a sneaky thing that attacks your mind, be it at work, before you doze off, in the shower, at dinner, anywhere! Evil thoughts told me it’s all my fault and that I’ll never have what I want because of this or that.

Haunting thoughts and demeaning ideas provoked my anxiety to desire destructive things. I also feared starting something productive because of thoughts of failure;

I was literally a prisoner of my own mind.

I turned to alcohol because it’s more socially accepted than therapy.

I turned to sex because it’s more relatable than yoga or holistic medication.

I was going down the rabbit hole of despair, but something was pulling me out of it in the midst of this storm.

Something told me to fight for myself, like I’d fought for love. Like I’d fought for money or success.

My spirit was telling me to fight for ME!

No one else encouraged me to fight my way out of this depression because no one knew my private battle.

I knew if I didn’t fight, I would die.

I stopped taking the meds for anxiety, and the pills for insomnia and then I stopped drinking.

I did everything cold turkey with nothing but a will to live.

I got deeper into…