The Weight Of Being The Sad Friend + A Message To Your Sadness.



If you follow any of my platforms you see I speak pretty openly about depression and my struggles with it. You would think I am an open book when it comes to the topic, but that couldn't be further from the truth. Just like everyone else I struggle with opening up about it and being truly transparent with what this does to my everyday life. See, it has to be the perfect formula. Talk about it enough to spark interest, but not too much that people start to feel genuinely concerned.


People with depression are so good at hiding the sadness it literally comes as a surprise when people realize the severity of it. Especially when it ends in such tragic ways (ie. suicide).

People who typically struggle with depression will do almost anything to not be seen as depressed. We make our attempts at navigating a close to regular life.


We work.

We date.

We hang out with friends.

We pay our bills.

We clean our house.


While these things sound very basic, these simple tasks can be all the more daunting to someone struggling to stay above water. The worst part about it is no one around will even notice.


Being depressed means a lot of the time you will truly be fine. You will engage in healthy conversations with friends, you will rise to the new position at work and you will flourish in all things wonderful. But what goes unnoticed is that you have inadvertently created the dynamic of everyday! You have established your normal, your baseline, if you will and now you feel obligated to meet this baseline daily, even if its not authentic. Kinda unrealistic now that I think about it.


Now what does this mean for friends?


Having a group of real friends is a blessing. Whether it is one friend or a whole group of them, it is very reassuring to have friends that are there for you.


When I was growing up there wasn't texting and social media (age spoiler, haha). When I wanted to talk to my friends I had to call them or physically appear on their door step after greeting their parents, of course. But now, texting has replaced phone calls and social media has erased all necessity to actually connect with people. This has made it so easy to shield your friends and family from the truth of your daily life and EMOTIONS.


Log onto facebook

post a good morning post; "Good Morning, everyone. Say it back"

double tap a few pictures of the family

share a funny video of a cat barking

double tap some more

etc etc etc


And because of this routine we have so frivolously created we lack actual engagement with people. It's almost like we forgot--forgot how to ask for help, forgot how to reach out in a time of need, forgot how to truly connect. Everyone is so obsessed with appearing to be {perfectly} okay that our social interactions aren't even interactions anymore. Because of this reality it is all the more difficult to just be candid about depression on an actual personal level.


Your sad friend is sitting in limbo everyday, debating on whether or not to even disclose that they are sad. Afraid that their feelings are a burden, afraid that their sadness would somehow disrupt the happiness of the friendship circle. Your sad friend is sitting existing everyday with the fear of exposing oneself as the sad friend. Nothing that you have done has caused this fear, however somehow it still exist.


Somehow in our we have rationalized fallacies.

We have tricked ourselves into believing that our friends would rather us suffer in silence, that they would rather us keep quiet about what we are experiencing.


THIS IS NOT TRUE.


Your true friends want to be in the loop. They want to know when you are getting bad again. They want to be there for you, but they can't if you keep them in the dark.


Going through the daily motions of the meet ups. group chats and Sunday brunches with bottomless mimosas I know you are present, engaging and have convinced everyone that you are perfectly fine, but there is a really dark reality behind that smile and it's okay to seek comfort. Depression has a plethora of ways to make it more manageable and I am sure your trying, but let your friends be there.

  • Apologize when you don't show up.

  • Tell them when you are getting bad.

  • Explain to them what you are feeling.

  • Respond to their messages, even if it's to say you don't feel like talking.


You don't have to go through this alone.


As I have stated before, everyday is an opportunity to be better than yesterday. This is a huge thing to simply release.

By being present and cognitive of the change within me attempting to happen, I have to be willing to be strong enough to no longer hide.


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NOTE TO FRIENDS:

If they come to you--listen. If they seem emotional--console. If they seem unstable--enlist help and if they seem reluctant--show them love.






xo

Charee





If you or anyone else is struggling with depression and having suicidal thoughts please

Text CONNECT to 741741 from anywhere in the USA, anytime, about any type of crisis.


Suicide is 100% preventable.


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