The Depression and Anxiety Paradox
kaelscion Nov 4 Updated on Nov 13, 2018
I posted this is as a comment to another discussion before realizing the thread was over a year old. But, seeing as I feel it could help folks, it's a post now. I really hope it can help some of you or at least open up discussion on the topic:
Anxiety and depression are old time friends to me. But the kind of friends that let themselves into your house at 3 in the morning, pissed drunk, to raid your fridge, then get mad when you almost shoot one of them because you think they're a thief.
I am High Functioning Autistic, suffer from Bipolar disorder, and have been in some accidents in life that have me dealing with chronic pain. Also, my childhood life was spent paying for my "defects" with um...not so nice treatment by one of my parents. It wasn't until I got married 8 years ago that I found out self punishment was not an appropriate way to express guilt!
Suffice to say, these issues make life extremely difficult. HOWEVER, this comment will not be a pity party for me. I will say though, that a huge key is understanding your illness. Which it is. Those who feel that chronic depression is just "being sad a lot" and you should just "think positively", is unfamiliar with the sensation of depression. Another point is to realize that, while anxiety is a feeling we all know, clinical Anxiety (notice the capital A) is an illness that needs treatment. An illness that is crippling, miserable, and will take you out at the knees some days even if you do absolutely everything right.
Nobody says that people with type 1 diabetes just need "a kick in the ass" to get going. Why? Because they have to jab themselves with needles all the time to not...you know...die. what causes diabetes? The pancreas does not produce enough insulin on its own. What causes Depression and Anxiety? The brain does not produce enough feel good chemicals, or produces too much adrenaline. So, both have medical causes and while they are technically in your head, they are actually in your brain. Big difference.
Being aware that you are not broken or lazy or stupid or whatever other demeaning thing people say you are is key.
I would say first though, before anything else can help you, you need to understand that there is nothing wrong with you. This world is built for people who are wired differently than you. Those folks are in the majority so they get consideration. But, just like if there was a race of people on this Planet that could only see in the UV light spectrum, we are a race unto ourselves that perceives the world in a fundamentally different way than most. The fact that they do not, and in many way can not, relate, is not your fault. Acknowledge that you are wired differently, then start learning how to approach a world designed for people that are not wired at all the same way you are.