a student-run publication that seeks to provide space for voices that are not being heard on our campus. we are grounded by politics that are radical, anti-racist, anti-sexist, anti-classist, anti-homophobic, anti-ableist, and anti-transphobic (against all forms of oppression) and that reject the structural neo-liberal paradigm that characterizes middlebury college and its official publications
(TW Suicide) I began to really think about death in grade six. Two of my closest friends committed suicide that year and I blamed myself for their deaths – for not being there to stop them. I decided it was best that I isolate myself from those around me because the responsibility for another’s life was too unbearable. I withdrew from extracurricular activities and tried my best to avoid school all together. I would breath heavily into my pillow to heat it then press it against my forehead to mimic fever symptoms but when I could not convince my mother that I was ill, I spent recess in empty classrooms and bathroom stalls. I lost my appetite for food and eventually my appetite for life. All energy drained from my body and mind. Nobody seemed to notice my development of a mental illness and I began to wonder whether they would notice if I disappeared all together. Proof that they would not I thought came when I left home one day only to return the next and find nobody had not wondered where I had gone. Nobody questioned why I wore long sleeves that summer either, why I refused to sail in anything less then a wetsuit, or why I would not reveal my thighs. Nobody questioned if I was hiding the wounds of a bread knife to my skin. When my grades went from As to Bs to Ds teachers lost interest in me but did not ask questions. When final reports came in mid-summer my mum and my mum saw my math and physics grades not at As but Cs she began to solve the equation for herself. I was not going through teenage angst, I was going through bereavement-related depression and growing suicidal. I knew she knew for over a week before she approached me about it and when she did I broke down and began rocking myself back and forth in the living room. I refused to be touched my her though I wanted to be held. I yelled that she did not understand, that she could not understand, and my crying filled the entire house. All the pain I was feeling expressed itself in my quaking body as I felt my words failing me. I saw my depression as a war and myself as a prisoner that could no longer fight. I felt caged in my body – both the prisoner and jailor of my mind – and thought if I did not hold they key, nobody could free me. I was wrong. Somewhere in the web of support that my mother, family and close friends offered me once they knew what I was going through was the key to ending my depression. Though I hated their overly-concerned looks, being forced to finish my plate, and endlessly being asked if I was okay, I needed to openly say no for a few months before I could truthfully say yes.