If human beings have a single fault that’s usually thought of as the opposite, it’s how much we love to give advice, whether it’s been solicited or not. Too many folks assume they’ve got the cure for something they don’t understand, or think that answers to complicated issues are somehow one-size-fits-all.
That definitely goes for any kind of medical diagnosis, but people with depression – like people suffering from any chronic condition – are generally already talking with a professional and honestly, don’t want to hear your thoughts on the matter.
These 16 people who suffer have been given some terrible advice, so take a scroll and make sure that you don’t repeat it to anyone you know.
16. Not the answer.
“Ditch your meds and do acid a few times, it’ll fix everything”
Psychedelics can be massively helpful in the right setting at the right time, but a bad trip can equally be so traumatizing it leaves you recovering for months. They’re a catalyst for introspection and change, not a cure on their own.
Treat them with respect and they will be invaluable. Treat them like a fun time or an escape and it will kick your ass.
15. If only it were that easy.
Any advice that started with “just”. Just implies something is no hassle, easy, not a problem.
Just go out, just exercise, just be happy, just think less (my personal favourite).
14. You can’t change people.
“Bloom where you’re planted.” – No GTFO of bad situations if possible.
“Choose joy.” – No, take your meds.
And I’ll throw in that while it might be a chemical imbalance causing the depression, getting rid of the toxicity in my life cleared that stuff up pretty well. I’m not totally out of the woods, but in November 2023 I might be free of the last remaining source of cruelty in my life.
Good advice, you can’t change people. But you can leave.
13. It’s not one size fits all.
I ate better food, was exercising, listening to motivational podcasts, even f**king meditating and doing breathing exercises, cleaning my room every morning and taking care of my personal hygiene.
Nope, still depressed. I think a lot of it has to do with being around people. I don’t know what it is but I find interaction with the majority of people to be exhausting.
People have so much to say about themselves and so little desire to listen. Other than my wife or for work I avoid people as much as possible. I think the exhausting part is I have to pretend to be cheerful and engaged when in reality I just want to be left the f**k alone.
12. All unhelpful.
I got 3 advices from 3 different people:
“You’ll be fine”
“Depression doesn’t exist”
“Just be happy!”
11. Emotionally flat.
“Do things you like”
It’s kind of the thing….yu can do them but you don’t like doing them anymore. You’re emotionally flat and exhausted and frankly it’s even worse to go through the motions of a thing you used to love.
10. The real truth.
A dude I met at university once told me “Depression isn’t real, it only exists in the west because you westerners have too much free time, In post-soviet country where I come from everyone works all day and have no time to be sad”
more like “in post-soviet country where i come from people blow their brains out with a shotgun before admitting they are depressed”
9. You don’t like them anymore.
The hardest part of my current soul crushing depression is that the things I once enjoyed doing bring nothing to me now.
I try to do them, feel absolutely nothing, then feel worse because now it feels like I’ve actively lost something.
8. Exceptionally stupid.
Just Be Happy!
And it’s impossible trying to explain to anyone who thinks this way why it’s a stupid thing to say. People like this are, in my opinion, incapable of either critical thinking or putting themself in another’s shoes (or both).
7. You lose your appetite.
The way I explain depression to people who never experienced it is to imagine if one day everything they ate magically turned into plain mashed potatoes as soon as it touched their tongue. No texture, no flavor nothing. Nothing has a taste or a texture.
You lose your appetite because nothing tastes good. You stop cooking properly because why bother? It’s all going to be mashed potatoes anyways once it touches your mouth. You ask people for advice and they go “have you tried seasoning your food?” Or “I like to make pot roast it’s so good”. And none of them grasp the concept that no, the problem isn’t the seasoning or how you cook, it’s that everything tastes like damn mashed potatoes.
Everything tastes like mashed potatoes and you miss eating different kinds of foods and you’re miserable and you’ve lost weight and and your health has gone to shit because you stopped eating properly because you’re so sick of eating mashed potatoes.
Now apply that to everything in your life.
6. Maybe not SO bad.
Just suck it up!
Fake it till you make it!
A lot of people take it as “pretend to be happy and eventually you will be.”
I read somewhere that instead of using it like that, view it as “what would i be doing if I was happy/wasn’t depressed?” And try to do whatever small part of that you can.
And the whole practicing gratitude/looking for whatever positives you can no matter how small. The more you focus on the bad, the more bad you see because your brain latches on to it. Focus on the good, however small it might be (even as small as “I heard a bird sing today” or “i got extra cuddles from my pet today”) can help establish that pattern in your brain and eventually you’ll see it more.
Unfortunately, most people mean it as “pretend to be happy because you’re making us uncomfortable.”
5. It’s a real thing.
Just stop thinking negatively. Just be happy. Just get some exercise. Just eat healthier.
I am so sick of the “just do this” advice. Like yeah, those things MIGHT help, but all of them are impossible when I’m struggling to even change my clothes, take a shower, cook actual meals, or clean my house everyday.
Saying just do this or just do that implies that depression isn’t even really a thing and that no one should have it because it’s so easy to not have.
4. I’m not sure that’s the answer.
My dad told me to have kids, which makes me wonder about him.
3. That’s not better.
‘Think about people who have it worse’
Thanks, now I’m depressed and feeling guilty about it.
2. Extra gross.
Just suck it up, be a man!
It rarely even gets discussed but suicide rates for men, especially in blue collar work, are incredibly high. Of any group in the nation CDC says workers in maintenance and trades are most likely to commit suicide. In general men kill themselves twice as much as woman (women however attempt more often).
I find when I finally hit breaking points and ask for help the fact I can literally calmly say I’m amount to kill myself and get ignored because I’m not in hysterics is very frustrating.
Like I calmly mentioned it to my doctor tried pills and other things than actually attempted to crush myself with a forklift by undoing a bolt that would drop the mast on me so my gf would get life insurance, got caught, and than it got taken seriously. But my family doctor was like “why didn’t you tell me it was that bad”… I fucking did. I just wasn’t convincing I guess.
1. It’s very frustrating.
As a teacher with chronic depression, I find that a lot of teachers do not understand depression at all. Where they might be empathetic for a student’s home life (poverty, parents, whatever), they are less empathetic to students with depression.
They don’t understand how hard it is for those kids to just come to school, let alone try and do any work. They also don’t understand that most medications that work for adults don’t work for kids. I really get frustrated by that.
These answers just made me cringe, no matter how well-intentioned they were at the start.
What’s the worst advice you’ve gotten about your depression? If it’s missing from this list, let us know in the comments!