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Question
Posted by: anon | 2010/06/08

all in the mind?

please tell me -

what are you (am I) supposed to think or say to people with the conviction that depression is something you can control with your mind? that if ''you really want to'' you can get over it. that ''it wont happen to you if you dont allow it''

believe me. if I could get out of this life im living and the torture i must put my husband through, ill do it now.

i was in such denial until I was diagnosed, Im the last person to just fashionably use the term ''depressed'' to give reason to my struggle. i actually diagnosed myself through research concluding some weird illness.

usaully i keep it all inside, but tonight im just struggling to understand how people can be so narrow minded as to think that their way of thinking is the only truth.

what do you guys think about this and how do you handle it?

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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Tiresome, isn't it ? These pompous and insensitive peop[le who have never acutally experienced Depression ( so far ! ) and who live with the fixed delusion that everyone else must experience life exactly as they do. The "just snap out of it" school of philosophy
Maria's suggestion is sound, as is the excellent response from anon - though in my experience, arguing with such people is like wrestling with the tar baby in the Uncle Remus story.
First look after yourself.
Actually, your question conflates two overlapping problems - the degree of Denial with which we may at times deal with our own problems, and the way too many people eagerly deny the reality of other people's problems. We're all capable of being so brave about other people's problems.
I'd be tempted to say to them - :"How sad that you really don't understand these things - one day you will. "


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Our users say:
Posted by: anon | 2010/06/08

K: I''m not sure what you mean by your apparently rude response, but I think I am perfectly jsutified in spending time with friends who are accepting and understanding and spending less time with people who choose to believe that I am able to just snap out of something that is an actual medical condition.
If you have nothing to add to this thread, perhaps it''s best to keep it to yourself. The person posting asked for advice not denigration.

Reply to anon
Posted by: kl | 2010/06/08

I concentrate on those friends and try to ignore other people who just pull me down by their lack of belief and faith in me.


so there is nothing wrong with your brain?????funny hey????

Reply to kl
Posted by: kl | 2010/06/08

I concentrate on those friends and try to ignore other people who just pull me down by their lack of belief and faith in me.


so there is nothing wrong with your brain?????funny hey????

Reply to kl
Posted by: anon | 2010/06/08

I normally say that it is like diabetes: in diabetes you don''t have enough insulin to control your blood sugar levels and so you need to take medication to control that, along with lifestyle changes like diet and seeing a doctor more frequently. In the case of depression, you haven''t got enough of certain neurotransmitters (serotonin, dopamine, etc) and so you sometimes need medication to fix this along with lifestyle changes like therapy. Ask them if they had diabetes would they try to control it with their mind alone?
Likewise, a ''mind'' disease like schizophrenia is recognised, so why not depression?

I have long struggled with this same narrow-minded view from others who are not qualified to diagnose things (ie thinking they know what depression is or isn''t) and have come to the conclusion that I have to do what''s right for me, not for them. I have some friends who, while they don''t really understand how it feels, are willing to open their minds and believe it is a real condition and not just caused by what you think. I concentrate on those friends and try to ignore other people who just pull me down by their lack of belief and faith in me.

Good luck.

Reply to anon
Posted by: Maria | 2010/06/08

Tell them that you''re glad they have so much control over their minds. You, however, have a chemical imbalance in your brain and need medication to correct that and therapy to help you deal with the consequences. You are after all only human. You can also show them books and articles on the subject if you think that might help. In the end though do what you need to do to help yourself and ignore the ignorant.

Reply to Maria
Posted by: cybershrink | 2010/06/08

Tiresome, isn't it ? These pompous and insensitive peop[le who have never acutally experienced Depression ( so far ! ) and who live with the fixed delusion that everyone else must experience life exactly as they do. The "just snap out of it" school of philosophy
Maria's suggestion is sound, as is the excellent response from anon - though in my experience, arguing with such people is like wrestling with the tar baby in the Uncle Remus story.
First look after yourself.
Actually, your question conflates two overlapping problems - the degree of Denial with which we may at times deal with our own problems, and the way too many people eagerly deny the reality of other people's problems. We're all capable of being so brave about other people's problems.
I'd be tempted to say to them - :"How sad that you really don't understand these things - one day you will. "


Reply to cybershrink

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