No one likes you. There’s something wrong with you. You never do anything right.Depression’s voice isn’t kind, and it can be difficult to separate out depressive thoughts from reality. If you’ve experienced depression, you know it can trick you into thinking things about yourself and your life that aren’t true. Here are some thoughts that depression can trick you into believing:
People don’t want to be around you: Depression makes you feel completely alone. Even if you have friends and family who love you, it can trick you into feeling like they don’t really care, or that no one wants to be around you. It can highlight insecurities about yourself and your relationships which can actually cause you to isolate yourself more. Gradually taking steps to re-engage with those you want to reconnect with can help to counteract your social withdrawal.
You don’t deserve to get better: Depression can toy with your self-worth, making you feel like you deserve to be this miserable. Trust me, you don’t. You are worth every minute of effort others spend trying to help you get to a better place, whether it’s your counselor, parents or a close friend. If you’re having a particularly difficult time figuring out if you should seek help, try to pretend that your friend is going through what you’re feeling right now. What do you think that they deserve? It’s often much easier to be a good friend to others than it is to ourselves. Take a two-minute anonymous screening at HelpYourselfHelpOthers.org to find out if your symptoms are consistent.
You are only your depression and nothing else: Depression may be something you have, but it’s not who you are. It can become really easy to get wrapped up in your feelings and to even start defining yourself according to your symptoms because of how often you feel them, but it’s so important to fight back against these thoughts. Try to change even simple phrases you say to yourself like, “I’m depressed” to “I am feeling depressed right now.” Reminding yourself the other parts of yourself you offer to the world can help boost your self-esteem and can restructure these thoughts.
Reaching out for help won’t make a difference: The problem is, you’re not trying hard enough, right? Wrong. When it comes to mental illness we’re quick to assume we should be able to fix the problem ourselves. You wouldn’t try to set your broken leg alone would you? Reaching out for help for a mental health issue should be no different. Up to 80 percent of those treated for depression show an improvement in their symptoms generally within four to six weeks of beginning medication, psychotherapy, attending support groups or a combination of these treatments.
Living with depression can be unbearable. If depression is tricking you into thinking some of these harmful thoughts, it’s important to confide in a friend or loved one, and to seek help.