I totally didn’t intend to write or upload this post, but I’m having a really bad day and I wanted to make a post on it. I didn’t really think that I’d ever write a blog post about depression, I know that my blog is mental health, but I just wasn’t ready and still might not be to tell people my story. This isn’t what this post is. Am I in recovery from depression? Have I recovered? I mean, I’m definitely not clinically depressed – which is what I was originally diagnosed with 4 years ago. But I’d say I still have depression a bit. Anyway, not the point of the post. Here are things no one tells you about depression.
Disclaimer – I’m not a medical professional, this is based on my experience with depression.
You lose friends and it hurts
I’ve always heard the saying “If they aren’t there at your worst, they don’t deserve you at your best” and while this is very true, it doesn’t take away the pain. It’s the pain of thinking they are your best friend, but the minute it starts to get hard, they can’t cope. If they can’t cope, imagine how the person with depression feels? I know that it’s hard to be around negative people, but it’s also very hard to be around overly positive people – especially if they don’t know how you are feeling! I don’t think I’ll ever get over the pain of your best friend of 8 years or 5 years or any years really, just ditching you because you’re too depressed.
A lot of people will advise you to start yoga
Ok, I know that they say it with the best intentions, but yoga will not solve my depression. Maybe it helps some people and that’s great, it really is! But it doesn’t mean I’ll feel any better. Quite a few people, including one of my therapists, told me to relax, take some deep breaths?? It doesn’t make any sense. The thing is, with mental health, different things work for different people. For some, yoga and mindfulness will work, for others, it will be exercise or journaling. THERE IS NO RIGHT ANSWER!
A tiny thing can push you over the edge
This! I felt this so much, I might be painting a nail and I go onto my skin and I would burst into tears. Someone shouts at me or gets annoyed, I’ll burst into tears. Even accidentally pushing perfume off my dressing table. It can be anything and that’s ok.
It’s also ok to not cry. So many people think depression is feeling sad, but you can also not feel a thing. Some days I felt so numb that I just stopped being able to cry. I would be feeling absolutely nothing, I’d just have no feeling inside of me. I couldn’t cry, I wasn’t mad, I was just completely numb.
It’s hard to think about the future
I struggled a lot thinking about the future, I wondered whether I’d still have depression, whether I’d be happy. I wondered if life could get any better or whether I would be stuck with this horrible feeling forevermore. It’s kind of like someone asking about summer plans, but I just wanted to take one day at a time – that’s how I felt with A-Levels and jobs etc.
It’s hard to feel worthy of anything
It was a bit like with anorexia when there would be the voice in my head telling me not to eat. Only this time, it was a depression voice telling me I wasn’t good enough, that why would my friends stay with someone who was so unhappy, that I’m ungrateful and so on. I felt lazy, realistically I knew I wasn’t, but lazy has connotations around staying in bed all day or not showering, and that is exactly what I was doing.
You feel like a burden
Sure, people say that they are ‘always here’, but it was so hard for me to believe that. I had a tutor that I spoke with at least once a week, I was going to therapy weekly and had a counsellor weekly. I felt that if I reached out, I would be taking up far too much of their time. Why would they want someone all sad and lonely to talk to them? I felt that I would bring them down, and that was not what I wanted to do. So instead, I would take it out on myself.
You feel angry and irratated
I don’t know what exactly I was angry at, whether it was myself, or my therapist or literally anything else. But I just felt so angry all the time. The type of anger that makes you cry. I actually had a stress ball that I would throw against my wall that would make me feel a little bit better. But this is definitely one of the symptoms I had the most.
Daily tasks become incredibly challenging
When my depression was at its worst, my hygiene really suffered. This is something that nobody tells you about, and I thought I was so lazy whilst going through it but I’ve since learnt that others feel the same. I struggled to get out of bed, I struggled to brush my teeth, brush my hair or even have a shower. It was so hard. At school, most of the girls would be wearing makeup every day, whereas I’d just roll out of bed. I’d say it was because I didn’t want to wake up early, it was really because I just did not have the energy.
Unpredictable sleep schedule
I found it so hard to sleep, some nights I’d only be asleep for 2 or 3 hours. Eventually, I was put onto sleeping pills and luckily since then, I fall asleep much quicker. But it was very hard. Some nights I’d cry myself to sleep, others I was so exhausted, I was always so mentally exhausted, but I just couldn’t sleep. This led to it being hard to stay awake at school. One of my quick-fix solutions of depression was to sleep – this totally messed up my schedule but it did make me feel a bit better at the time.
Your memory is a bit off
I found that with depression, I couldn’t remember things. Obviously, there is a chance that this was related to anorexia, but even now I’m just not really with it when I have a really bad day with depression. At the same time, I use to remember really specific things.
So many headaches
This one might just be me, or it might be a coincidence, but I always had really bad headaches. Maybe it’s because of the crying? Maybe when my eyebrows crinkled/frowned? Maybe from grinding my teeth? Whatever it was, if I was having a bad day I would likely have a headache too.
Strong mood swings
You could be absolutely fine, happy even and then one tiny thing happens and you are sobbing, wanting to crawl straight back into bed and never come out. It was so annoying, I might have a really good day with my friends but something would happen and it wouldn’t be a good day any longer. It can be so hard to know whether what you are feeling is real or not. I often found myself fake laughing, I actually forgot what it felt like to be happy so I didn’t know whether or not what I was feeling was actual happiness or not. It’s crazy how fast your fake smile becomes a part of you.
Related post: World Suicide Preventation Day
You will feel lonely and isolated
This is a big one, one that I still feel now. Remember those friends that ditched you? You’ll convince somethings wrong with you and that they were right all along. You will start to distance yourself from everyone else, you’d rather it be your decision, rather than go through the pain of losing more friends because of this horrible mental illness.
It is so hard to come back from having depression
The final thing I’m going to talk about is a bit related to the stigma of it. I don’t know what it is, but I still feel lonely and isolated. I just thought that not having clinical depression and an eating disorder, would mean my friends would like me more and we could do normal friends stuff. We could go out for meals, or a picnic, or even a day out. But no one wants to do this stuff with me. I wish someone could have told me how hard it is to create new memories with the same friends, creating new memories with new friends. I just didn’t think it would be this hard. But that is the sad reality of mental illnesses.
Since this is a bit of a long post and I could definitely think of more, I might do a part 2 to this next month ❤
If you are struggling, please know that you can always message me (I truly mean it), call/message a helpline or go to the doctors.
Samaritans: 116 123
I felt this post so strongly, Caroline. I feel so many of these things, and it’s so mentally draining to try and see the positives of everything. I’m sorry you are going through the same, just know if you ever need or want to talk, I’m here. x
Thank you, I hope you are ok x
Thank you for sharing your story Caroline. Sending you a big virtual hug.
Thank you! ❤
It’s hard especially when people don’t understand. Every way possible I’ve felt this way for 2 weeks now. Just hold your head up and keep pushing forward. My inbox is always open if ya need to chat!
I agree, thank you – me too x
This is such an honest post and I appreciate you sharing your story Caroline x
Lucy | http://www.lucymary.co.uk
Thank you <3
Hi Caroline, I can only imagine how challenging it is to write down some of the thoughts you are experiencing.
It takes great mental strength to do this too.
Like you have offered others if they are struggling, please feel free to message me if you need some support by email.
Thank you, I appreciate it
Thank you for this incredible post. I think it’s really important to flag these common experiences of depression which we just don’t talk about enough. I remember feeling incredibly apathetic and numb to everything and everyone. I also remember the friends whom went silent or drifted apart when I told them. But most importantly I remember the friends who supported me and held on with me.
So true, the friends that support you through that are the best ones x
This is a very relatable post, but it’s also interesting to see how differently everyone goes through things. I like yoga, but agree that it doesn’t fix much, just is a good distraction. Thank you for your honesty in this post, it was really touching to read. Em x
Thank you <3
Bex Quinlan says
I can relate to so many of these. Particularly the yoga and personal hygiene. I’ve lost count of the number of times I’ve been told to try yoga – I’ve tried, and tried, and tried. And it just isn’t for me. Really relatable blog, thank you for writing.
Thank you x
Simply Alex Jean says
First off, thank you for sharing. This post rings oh so true, and connects on many levels! You’ve done an amazing job of really outlining some of the things that are less known or less talked about when it comes to depression of any level. Thanks for sharing.
Thank you so much Alex x
Thank you for sharing, I struggle with many of these issues also – especially the feeling like a burden and personal hygiene issues. As I have struggled with depression for many years, I can say that as embarrassed as I feel about not doing what I should to take care of myself when I have been in a downward spiral, it has become one of the best ways for me to pinpoint that I am struggling and need to assess what’s going on.
I totally get you x
Charlotte Birchall says
This is a great post. I learnt about all of these things the hard way. The worst parts of depression are the mood swing and the fear to talk about it. Thank you for sharing this post.
So true, thank you for reading x
This is a wonderful post and I feel like it completely sums up everything I felt for the last 18months. I’m finally coming out of it somewhat but it’s just unimaginable when you’re in the middle of it. Thank you so much for sharing your story, I really believe it helps people feel like they aren’t as alone in what they are feeling. I know for me, I just couldn’t imagine any other human possibly living life the way I was. This is just so relatable for me.
Thank you! xx I hope you feel somewhat better x
This is one of the bravest posts I’ve read in a long time. I had clinical depression several years ago but I was lucky to have the support of my husband because my so-called friends were nowhere to be seen. I feel for you, Caroline, and I strongly support all the issues you’ve raised. I know it’s not the same as IRL but I do believe online friends can help to uplift and support you, and I hope some of the responses to this post will do just that. Take care, lovely, xxx
Thank you ❤xx
The Healthcare Hustle says
My best friend has depression and this really helped me understand her point of view a little better. I am always trying to support her in any way I can and understanding what she is going through is a big part!
Thank you, I’m glad it has helped your understanding x
Good post to raise awareness. It can be so hard to identify depression symptoms as they vary so much!
Jenny in Neverland says
Great post. I started suffering with depression a bit this year actually. For the first time ever, I really noticed my mood and how I was feeling and I was like woah, this ain’t right. I’m trying to take it day by day – which really helps. And focusing on the little things that bring me joy. For me, one of those IS Yoga! But yes, it’s certainly not the be-all and end-all.
I’m so sorry to hear that, the little things are what got me through it too x
This is a very informative and helpful post for people who are living with depression so they feel less alone. Thank you for sharing.
Thank you x
Della Driscoll says
Thank you for being so honest and for sharing this!! I know this will help a lot of people and is very relatable x
Thank you x
Alicia Thompson says
Hi Caroline, thank you for being so open and honest. I really enjoyed this post! This is a really informative post and will help a lot of people with depression. Great post! Alicia
Thank you x