This story contains themes or mentions of suicide or self harm.


This letter may be a surprise for you, I know we haven’t talked in a while. You know losing dad was hard for me, and I had to distance myself because of how difficult it all became. I understand if you don’t want to hear from me after all this time, but you are the only person I have in this world, the only one I can talk to about this.

The reality is that I’m terribly unhappy, just like dad back then. I know I judged him harshly and we would fight constantly because of that, but now that I’ve reached the age he had when he started deteriorating, I think understand. In a way, I guess I’m writing this to you because I can’t write to him.

Mom, was I happy when I was a kid? I’ve always been sure I was, but it’s been so long since my life became so gray that I’ve started to question even that. For the last 20 years, I haven’t felt any excitement or passion for anything, and my life is just a routine I can’t escape. The last time I spoke to dad he told me sometimes you just accept what life gives you instead of asking for more. I was so harsh to him that day, I told him he was a mediocre man and I would never be like him. I told him I would follow my dreams unlike him, but I find myself in the same place he was even after following said dreams. I can’t believe that was the last conversation we had, it took me many years to realize he was right after all and now we’ll never get to talk about it.

I wish I could tell you that is guilt that makes me unhappy because I think that’s something I could overcome with time, but that’s not it. I do feel guilty about not feeling more guilty for the pain I caused him, but I’m ashamed to admit that the pity I feel for finding myself in this state weighs more.

The thing is, I don’t know what’s wrong with my life. This is what I wanted, you know that. My business became incredibly successful almost as soon as I started it, and even though I don’t have as many clients as I used to, I’m still in a good position. I am wealthy enough and have a big house, which is what I always wanted. I think that’s part of the problem, I made my dreams come true far too quickly, and I didn’t have a plan for what I would do after that.

I know you are wondering but no, I never married. I never saw the point, I’ve always been fine on my own, and the few girlfriends I had proved to be more of a nuance than anything else. I know you would be happier if I had married and had children, but that’s just not who I am.

I don’t have friends either. I wasn’t a sad and lonely man who didn’t talk to anyone, I had people around me for anything I needed, but at some point they grew more distant and now I can’t say I have one friend in the world. Hence my letter to you, who probably won’t even read it.

I tried taking classes, just to see if I could find a hobby or anything to feel a little excitement for, but it’s been a waste of my time. I tried taking piano lessons, learning German, painting, and even tried dancing lessons! I quit all of them after two or three weeks, I felt ridiculous, and completely out of place. In that, I guess I haven’t changed since I was a kid.

In an act of desperation, I even went on a couple of dates, but I couldn’t stand the empty conversations of those women. And you won’t like this, but I even tried hiring some escorts. It wasn’t really about the sex, it was just nice to be able to talk to someone who wouldn’t judge me. I grew particularly fond of one; we would talk for hours, which was probably the easiest money she ever made, but at some point I grew bored of her. She turned out to be very empty too, and I lost all interest. It’s not a nice thing, I know, but there is no point denying it. It wasn’t that long ago but I don’t even remember her name.

I got a dog. I never had one before because I didn’t want to deal with the responsibility of taking care of another being, but I didn’t know what else to try. I just thought that if it didn’t work out, I would return it to the shelter, but it turned out to be my anchor when things got really bad. When I started receiving fewer clients and had no reason to get out of bed, my responsibility to take care of it made me get up every morning, and it keeps me company.

After everything I tried, and even with the dog, I still find little joy in my day-to-day. I know all this may sound very severe but don’t worry, I won’t kill myself. Even in this state, I find suicide a deplorable thing, I have no desire to end my life so tragically, even if I gave up on trying to be happy.

I don’t know why it’s so hard for me to enjoy life. There are people out there who live meaningless lives and seem so content with them. My life is not so bad. I’ve even started to question if the problem is not my job, or my lack of company, that maybe the problem it’s just me. Maybe it’s a genetic thing that dad passed down to me, and it won’t matter what I do, I’m always going to feel like this. Maybe that happiness and joy it’s just an illusion young people chase.

I guess all I wanted was to wake up one day and be able to say I feel alive again. I doubt things will get any better, but I’ll accept the fate I was given and learn how to live my life on a scale of gray.

I hope you can understand me like you understood dad when he was going through the same thing. I hope you haven’t completely lost your faith in me.

Love, Jonathan

March 29, 2023 03:44

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