Never let them see you cry?
Ever feel like you have a lot to say, but shouldn’t, or even can’t, because it’s too “sad” or “negative”? Ever feel like you can’t talk about job hunting woes because you might be judged? Or relationship troubles because the mask of happiness you show the world might begin to crack?
I know that when I post positive affirmation material I get more likes on Facebook. Repeating things like “I’m smart, I’m worthy, I’m loved” etc etc ETC may make others nod in communal acceptance that we’re all sitting here convincing ourselves and each other that we’re great.
Well I don’t really think so. I think we’ve all done or are capable of doing bad things, making mistakes. And it’s not by insisting that we will have no regrets and are wonderful that we will be ok and move on.
I know that if anyone(In America) asks “how are you?” they aren’t actually asking, and if you answer with anything other than “Great!/Fine!/Ok!” you’ll get an awkward look akin to“I need to escape this uncomfortable conversation now”. They’ll tell you to stop complaining if you say “I’m having a rough time.” Or “it’s not so bad” when you express worry about your situation.
As if we’re not allowed to have a bad day, or a bad week, or any trouble in our lives that isn’t taken with a smile and a positive outlook of “things will get better! no worries! I’m fine!”…or at the very least, kept to yourself. Don’t impose your (downer)feelings on others, essentially.
At best this is just being “polite” to the people around you, at a more sinister level it’s ensuring depressed people have no one to talk to(they feel like). At worst it’s actually getting you judged because if you do share anything publicly that can be read/heard about…well…then maybe you just won’t get that reply on your dream job because you posted “I don’t like x and I am having a bad day”.
Well, I’m having a bad day. And that’s ok dammit. Sometimes you have them. Sometimes bad things happen. I don’t want to smile and act like everything will be fine eventually right now, but I’ll get there.
It’s ok to complain sometimes and get sad. It’s ok to let it out. I worry that repressing depression may actually be worse.
It’s hard to talk about anything like this when you lose the security you once had. Until you have it again you are at risk of being denied and judged for speaking about having a rough time, even while you would be expected to be having a rough time.
So anyways…life is sad and tragic and hard, while also amazing and beautiful and fulfilling. Let’s not treat it like only one side matters.