What Makes Language Fail

So, one thing that freaks me out is writing and letting people see that writing. Built up the courage to show a little something i’m working on. It’s got a lot left and I’m not sure how to build it up. More to come maybe… let me know any thoughts or advice!
Here goes:

A person can be absent even when you’re with them all the time. If there’s anything I’ve learned from him, it’s that. Absence. Maybe that word doesn’t work. It suggests a recognition of something missing. But it’s hard to know what you don’t have when you’ve never really had it.

When you live with someone who suffers from depression, anxiety and a dash of psychosis (for good measure), you live with a cloud: capable of variety whilst at the same time, being wholly unchanging. White and fluffy, fat and ready to burst, grey and ominous and then pop. It bursts and irrationality bleeds, gushes out. The problem with depression is that it isn’t rain. My metaphor fails. Rain stops, you see? Depression is difficult to quell because it is so human.

But how is one to react? I feel everything; emotion is infinite when dealing with this. Throughout my life I have refrained from speaking about what it’s like to have a dad who is mentally ill because people will not understand. It is almost impossible to communicate this experience and my hurt. Derrida says that there is nothing beyond language. Our thoughts and experiences are bounded by words. Derrida is wrong. Outside of language are certain things which defy language: emotion, depression, God for those who believe.
Language is limited. Terms like ‘depression’, ‘anxiety’ are now diagnoses, applied to people. We think that we’ve solved the problem because a word has been placed upon a person. All that’s happened is that a person is branded, labelled. What they experience is so much more.

He is my dad; I don’t want to call him dad. Yet, I ache with sadness to consider his weary, aberrant thoughts and his impregnable isolation.


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