How to connect with friends who are depressed
January 7, 2018 9:38 AM   Subscribe

She allowed me to be deeply depressed and simultaneously have a genuine connection to another person. For the first time, I identified as someone living with depression and I felt, oddly, good about it — or rather, like I wasn’t a bad person for having it.
posted by bunderful (8 comments total) 44 users marked this as a favorite
One of the most liberating conversations I ever had was with a young woman who happened to sit down by me at a party. Somehow, we revealed we were both lifelong depressives. I had never before actually met another severely depressed person. It was almost reassuring to talk with another, comparing notes if you will.
posted by Thorzdad at 9:48 AM on January 7 [6 favorites]

I liked this quote.
"Don’t insist that the things which make other people feel better will work for us. For example, you cannot cure clinical depression by eating ice cream, which is unfortunate because that would be living the dream."

I have two best friends, one has severe chemical depression she calls it. I watch her battle, and then I started recognizing my own. We made some deals about having wonderful conversations, discussions that lead us into our interests, and we exhort, and uplift each other, and apply psychic band aids, and actively care for one another. Occasionally we delve into the delicious darkness of politics, but we both realize that time is not on our side anymore and we don't care to waste the coinage of the possibility and reality of joy, even modest joy.
posted by Oyéah at 9:59 AM on January 7 [9 favorites]

Thanks for this post. There's some really sound advice and practical insight in this short piece.
posted by saulgoodman at 11:16 AM on January 7 [1 favorite]

I was surprised this was so kind and hope the comments in this thread are also surprisingly kind.
posted by colorblock sock at 1:12 PM on January 7

This is exactly correct.
posted by PMdixon at 4:35 PM on January 7

I’m talking about the kind of fun where people enjoy each other’s company effortlessly, no one feels awkward, and no one accuses the sad person of ruining the holidays.


If there's one thing that coming to terms with bouts of depression has taught me, it's fury at the social norm that says happiness is mandatory.

FUCK that noise.

Misery is a normal human experience. If you don't accept that - if you're trying to tell me that my present misery is not merely unpleasant for me, but unacceptable to you - then I'm going to go find somebody to talk to that isn't a fucking Stimpy. And you can clean your own filthy litter trays from now on, I ain't doin it for you no more.
posted by flabdablet at 6:54 AM on January 8 [6 favorites]

Oh this is a wonderful salve to the "hey just try being not depressed" article that's going around.
posted by I'm Not Even Supposed To Be Here Today! at 7:04 AM on January 8 [1 favorite]

Lovely piece. Thanks for sharing it.
posted by Tasmanian_Kris at 3:21 PM on January 9

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