The Hardest Conversation
by Daniela Ferro
You haven’t been sleeping very well lately, have you?
It’s just that the tiniest of noises wakes me up immediately.
I noticed that you are not wearing any make-up anymore.
I just want to give my skin a break.
You seem to be eating more chocolate than ever.
Must be getting my period.
Did you call your family recently?
Not much happening, so don’t really have anything to share.
You stopped working out, didn’t you?
My back is hurting.
When did you last go outside?
I went grocery shopping the other day.
Did you miss the team dinner last week?
Ended up working late that evening, so didn’t go.
Isn’t it time you speak to your husband? He will understand. He probably knows what’s going on anyways.
I can’t. That would mean it’s happening again.
He loves you. He will stand by you. No matter what.
It’s not that. I feel like a failure, because it’s happening again.
You have come so far. Don’t risk losing all your progress. Why are you doing this?
I will get through this. By myself. I have done this before, and I can again.
But how did you feel the last time when you were hiding what was going on?
I know, but when I speak about it, it will be real and then there is no turning back anymore.
Think of all the good that happens once you are getting help and support.
I know, I know. Just give me a few more days.
You will only make it worse. You know that this doesn’t magically disappear by itself.
Maybe it will this time? Can I not just wait a few more days?
You are missing out on sleep, your friends, your family, your life. Please listen to me. Please get help. Please speak up!
I can’t. I just can’t. I don’t want to get the label again.
You know that that’s not true. The last time you spoke up, you heard nothing but support and love.
But I can’t risk my career. It just can’t be happening again.
You know right well that that’s not true. Being honest always done it for you. Why stop now? Asking for help is never a sign of weakness. It’s a sign of strength.
Can I wait at least until tomorrow?
Please don’t. Look up. Please see what I am seeing. You are not well. You need help. You will get through this. You are not a failure. You are strong. You have proven this many times. Don’t give up. Just talk to him. It will be fine. Look up. PLEASE, look up.
…I lifted my head. Carefully keeping my eyes pointed downwards to the floor. I took a deep breath. I am not sure if I am ready for this. I closed my eyes. I opened them.
The girl in the mirror in front of me looked tired. Sad eyes. Greasy hair. Pimples. Exhaustion.
I was right and I had to finally admit to myself that it was time to speak up. Now.
“My love? Can we have a chat?”
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