Authored by William G. DeFoore, Ph.D.
You already know that depression hurts you. What you may not realize is how it hurts the ones you love. We're going to take a unique look at depression here, and how you got depressed.
Then we're going to look at how it affects others. The good news you will discover here is that you have more control than you thought you did. You have the freedom to choose--and choose again, and again.
Accepting that you have choices is a big step to moving out of your depression, because when you're depressed you probably feel helpless and hopeless most of the time.
You don't have to live with depression. There are many things you can do to help yourself, and you're going to learn about those right here.
Depression is not a virus that you catch like a cold or the flu. It is a condition that results from a lot of unresolved emotion building up over a long period of time. Let's look at how this happens:
This is all totally normal - not healthy, but normal in the sense that it happens to a lot of people. The reason that depression hurts so many people these days is that being mildly to extremely depressed has become normal--meaning most people are feeling that way. But you don't have to be one of them!
As you can see from the above description of how you got depressed, this can happen to anyone, regardless of what kind of situation you come from.
If someone loves you, they want to see you happy. So, clearly, with this in mind, your loved ones don't want to see you depressed.
Beyond that, here are some other ways depressions hurts your loved ones:
Pretty easy to see how this works, isn't it? I know, if you're depressed, this isn't going to make you feel better. It will probably make you even more depressed.
So why am I telling you? Because there is a certain narcissism in depression, and if you're totally focused on yourself, you may need to remember and focus on what is going on around you.
I'm glad you asked! First, consider getting some counseling, which has been found to be more effective than medication for long term healing of depression in some cases.
Also, take a look at these resources for understanding and treating depression:
That about wraps it up for now. Depression hurts, but it doesn't have to destroy you. Use the above referenced resources, and you will definitely start feeling better.
Learn more about the pain of depression in this Psychology Today article.