TW: depression, suicide, brief mention of self harm.
Back story: When I was an adolescent I was seriously depressed. In and out of hospitals, taking eight medications a day, self harming, I had several serious suicide attempts along with some not so serious suicide attempts and so on. It took a huge toll on our parents and I think it’s part of the reason why their marriage is falling apart. During this part of my life I had basically no relationship with my mother because due to my depression she became absolutely crazy and impossible to interact with. I moved from Florida to Spain in the middle of April 2019 I have since then made a whole life here. Since then my life has significantly improved and I have a better relationship with my mother. I think it’s important to mention that I am overseas from where my family lives.
In mid October 2019 my brother called me while I was at work hysterically crying saying that he’s super frustrated with school and our parents. He’s always had a history of disliking school, in fact when he was in the fifth grade he was diagnosed with ADHD but no longer takes Adderall nor any of the other medications because he doesn’t like the way it makes him feel. Anyway, when I spoke to him in October high felt that he was kind of depressed and I kind of saw myself in him when I was his age. Since moving I’ve been the referee between my brother and our parents, mostly my mother. Whenever my brother needs to communicate something important he will call me and I will relay the information to my parents. So on that occasion I called my parents and I had them know that Yayo (brother) was becoming increasingly stressed and depressed because of school and that he needed therapy. They proceeded to find him a therapist and he dropped out of regular high school to go to a special high school where he only goes a few hours a day and they give him the bare minimum to get his credits.
Forward to yesterday, I wake up to find a message from our father. It was a message explaining that he had had a meeting at Yayo’s school He was explaining that he had had a meeting with the academic director Regarding how many credits my brother needs. At one point my brother is called into the office and they start telling him that he only has four credits left that it’s so easy that it’s just one little push and he can be over with it. Whenever I ask a question my brother would only respond with monosyllables he had put on my dad would call an ass face (cara de culo) like he didn’t want to be there and didn’t care what anyone had to say. My mom and sends me a message telling me that my father had a meeting at school with the academic director and my brother and that I should speak to my brother and explain to him that he only has a little bit left to go because I’m the only one he listens to.
Yayo then calls me I could tell by his voice (his faking a phone smile voice) that he wants okay. He started crying and venting telling me that he feels like mom and dad don’t understand him. He feels like he’s a fuck up I’m not mom always compares him to me because I was a fuck up but then I wasn’t. And he just feels like shit whenever She makes those comparisons. And then dad is always telling him that he only has a little bit left to go and that makes him feel like even more of a fuck up because getting those last four credits should be just so easy but for him it feels just as impossible as jumping across the Atlantic ocean. He’s telling me that he’s always bullshitting school and that he spends half the time asleep. That mom and dad think that it’s just because he’s lazy when in reality he’s completely capable of doing shit he doesn’t like like going to work, and then he says it’s just because school isn’t for him he feels like he isn’t capable of completing it. I asked him what exactly does he want, and he says that he doesn’t know he quite frankly isn’t even thinking about his future. He stars saying that he wished that he could just stay in bed and never have to get up, that he just wants to quit life. He can’t imagine himself in the future. I asked him if he was having suicidal ideation and he said that he had thought of offing himself but not seriously enough to plan anything. I then asked him how long he had been having these thoughts. He said less than 3 months. I told him that I was not asking for his permission but that I didn’t want his consent to tell our parents. I gave him the example of if he told me that he had stage to lung cancer I would have to tell mom and dad it’s not something I can keep to myself same with suicidal ideation. And he told me that although he completely understands that it’s something that I have to tell them he wishes that I wouldn’t because that’s only going to make him look like a fuck up even more. He told me that it’s OK that he’s not going to lose trust in me and that he gets it.
I then spoke with my parents and the conversation that I had with them made me feel very scared. The conversation I had with him made me feel very scared because the impression that I got from them was that of annoyance. That they don’t have time to deal with this shit. I know they love him but when I told my mother that he doesn’t like it when she compares him to me she just came up with excuses like “oh I’m not comparing him I’m just giving him good examples” I told her that’s besides the point whatever term she wants to use for what she does whether it be example or comparison that she should not use my name in conversations regarding his future if she knows that hurts him. Then my dad told me that he just feels irritated at the whole situation that he definitely needs a new therapist because this therapist isn’t working out. Our dad acted like it’s just another problem another excuse for him not to get his credits out. He said “Yayo is sick in the head”. My mom said “I just don’t understand why he can’t tell us this shit why does he tell you and not us?!?” I feel like the conversation that I had with them was absolutely fruitless and it was more of a burden than anything else.
I thought my parents had learned from the situation that I was in and how it was the worst time if our lives when I was sick. I don’t want to lose my brother to suicide. Our birthdays are 3 years and 364 days apart (mine on the 20th and his on the 21st) we’ve always celebrated our birthdays together and I would hate to live in a world in which I can’t share my birthday with the person I love most in this world. He’s my best friend I love him I adore him he’s my baby brother and I don’t want this to get so bad that I lose him. I don’t know what to do Im scared and I just want to help.
TDLR: my brother is depressed just like I was when I was an adolescent, my parents seem absolutely clueless as to how serious it is.
names and dates changed for privacy reasons