Friday, 6 December 2013

Some things are better left unsaid

I realise that a lot of my blog has been taken up with my mental health problems. I am not sorry for it but I promise that this blog will brighten up some day. During my battle with low mood and anxiety I have had some wonderful people show their support. Their kind words, hugs and advice has really made me feel encouraged.

I understand that many people don't know what to say, so they say what they think is right and instead it ends up being the least helpful thing. I don't mean for this to sound off/ungrateful putting because at the end of the day, if you have a friend or loved one dealing with mental health issues, then just being there for them is enough. However, below is a list of some things said to me that have been of no help and in all honesty made me feel worse.

1) 'You're strong, Becca. You'll get through this'

It may be mean of me to say this but I do just roll my eyes at this sentence. It's such a nice thing for people to say but I don't think people realise that the reason I suffer from depression is because I am strong. I was strong for too long before the breakdown. So for someone to say this is just a reminder of why this all happened in the first place. They say depression and anxiety affects strong people and I totally see why!

2) 'Tomorrow will be a brighter/better day'

Will it? Many people suffering through a breakdown struggle to get through the present day anyway let alone having to focus on making it through to the next. I remember when people would say this to me and I would just think 'but I need to get through today first, just help me through today!'

3) ' There's a light at the end of the tunnel'

This kind of reiterates what I said in the last one. I was speaking to a girl at my therapy sessions who echoed my thoughts on people saying this. Tunnels don't give off the best picture anyway - it reminds you of darkness and not knowing where you are. I much prefer people saying things like 'the top of the staircase is there.' This is because it allows you to focus on steps to get there.

4) 'Think about all the things you have to be happy about'

I have said it before but depression lies to you. People suffering with depression are even more aware of what is good in their lives just their mind tells them it isn't worthy. With me I do realise the good fortunes in life, more than many people do, but they cannot outweigh my deeper issues.

5) 'There are people that have it so much worse than you'

I'd like to think you wouldn't say this at all unless someone is being selfish or unkind. I have had this said to me a few times and it makes my blood boil! It just makes me feel guilty for the way I am feeling and even more depressed! There are some days where I struggle to put my thoughts and feelings into perspective. So for someone to say this opens up a new can of worms in trying to understand others perspectives too. I understand that the whole world has problems and some people absolutely do have it worse off!!! But it doesn't make what I am going through any less real or less hurtful.

6) 'You need to think positive and positive things will happen.'

Eh? I totally understand that positivity is a good thing in healing the brain. It allows us to retrain our minds to think more clearly. However, when people have said this to me it has just activated the anxiety button in my body.

I know this post comes across as ungrateful and that's why I will soon do a post on what I did find helpful for me. I just think it's important to remember that you don't have to say things because it sounds right. Say it because you mean it! The message will come across a lot more believable and will be invaluable to your loved one.

1 comment:

Callie Nicole said...

I'm so glad you posted this! I think this is a really helpful list. I definitely want to read the post of things people say that you found encouraging/ helpful.

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