1. I've had four months off between graduation and the start of my new full-time job.
  2. I have spent all of August back home in Maryland, and I realized something.
  3. The people I grew up with, the ones that knew my family, were aware of what was going on because all four of us were so open in discussing it. ('Why hide mental illness? It's nothing to be ashamed of.' is our philosophy.)
    In case you don't know what I'm talking about: AFTER MY BROTHER SAID "I DON'T KNOW IF I'LL LIVE TO SEE 2015...".
  4. Even if they were uncomfortable approaching the subject of mental illness or didn't want to reach out to my parents or brother, all of which I would completely understand, they could have checked in on me.
    After all, what happens in my family DOES affect me.
  5. You're supposed to be my friends. Do you think about the fact that Ria almost lost the sweet, innocent brother that was always nice to you? Do you worry about what kind of an impact the attempts were having on her? Do you even give a shit?
  6. Yes, sometimes, this kind of heavy subject is better approached face-to-face, but I'm hardly ever in Maryland. A Facebook message or call wouldn't hurt.
    I didn't even see comments from these people when my brother wrote out his story on Facebook for all our world to read.
  7. I don't hold it against them because my energy is better reserved for other things.
  8. But I've gotta say, I saw those comments, those asks, that concern from my friends in college.
    People who have never met my brother or my parents. Who have no idea what kind of a loss we almost suffered.
  9. Some of them were forced into the conversation because they saw me face-to-face, sure. But others, even ones I'm not close to, still ask me to this day how my brother is doing.
    While the ones in Maryland almost never do.
  10. And when everyone asks me why I chose not to move back home with my family, in a place that's comfortable to me, where my old friends live...
    I want this to be my answer.