Chances are, you realize by now that depression is something so many people struggle with on a daily basis. If you’re lucky enough to be one of the unaffected, you probably want to be as helpful and sympathetic to those who suffer as you can – and that means educating yourself on all of the ways they’re affected on a daily basis.

If you’re thinking it will be easy to spot just by looking for a lack of motivation, sadness, and maybe suicidal thoughts, well, these 19 people say differently – and they’re willing to share all of the ways depression intrudes on their lives.

19. Complete and utter indifference.

I came here to say this. Basically not having emotions.

Not like psychopathy but like a complete and utter indifference to whatever happens to yourself.

I have this emotion a lot and its by far the one that has affected me the most.

Without any motivation its extremely easy to fall behind in schoolwork, become a recluse, and usually that just puts you further into depression.

18. You feel like you can’t do anything right.

Inability to focus. Imagine having to do homework but other members of your family are having a conversation.

All attention goes to the conversation.

Then you realize that you’re listening to the conversation and not doing homework so you spend time mentally beating yourself up because you can’t even focus FOR ONE FREAKING MINUTE?!

17. A fancy word for it.

I think that’s ennui.

I’m struggling with it right now. It happens periodically. It’s just struggling to be interested in anything, it sucks. Plus my hand hurts so I can’t do much anyway.

16. More-so than usual.

When I’m having a depressive episode not only does my memory lapse, but I also get extremely unfocused. Almost like confused?

Which can make me a very irritable and short-tempered. It can be tiring and make even the simplest tasks so difficult.

15. It’s not easy.

So much agreement here.

I get told constantly that it’s easy to do the things I’m supposed to. It’s not. It’s really not. Most of the time, I don’t have it in me to take care of myself in lots of ways that I should. And in fact, being criticised over my lack of attention to self-care just makes me want to go back to sleep, or to cry, or even results in me feeling less motivated than I did before I was being complained at.

I know that I’m bad at taking care of myself, and when I respond with this, all anyone replies with is “well why don’t you take care of yourself then if you know?”…… it’s not that easy, although it can be very hard to understand that if you don’t deal with mental illness.

14. No feelings at all.

Not having any emotions or convictions at all. Being BORED!

People associate depression with profound sadness, but especially if it’s chronic, that’s only a small part of depression. You get to the point where you can’t feel anything at all. You don’t get happy or sad, frightened or excited.

You exist without feeling. Imagine living your life not being able to pay attention to anything because it’s so boring — your hobbies, friends, job, your life. Imagine being perpetually bored and only bored, being unable to feel anything but that and occasional, crushing misery.

I think that’s what people don’t get about depression. That it gets so bad that being really sad is actually almost a relief.

13. When it all hits you at once.

For me, it was a combination of depression, anxiety, and ADHD.

Depression and anxiety go hand in hand. The depression is fairly self-explanatory. Anxiety comes in many forms, but can be categorized as “acute” and “chronic.” Acute anxiety is like a panic attack. Also lesser forms, but it ramps up noticeably in a short-ish timeframe (minutes to hours), then falls back down pretty fast, too.

Chronic anxiety is something you might not notice you have right away. I noticed mine because the acute events seemed to be hitting the point where I couldn’t function much faster. I eventually realized I was starting from a much higher baseline. I asked my doctor if anxiety could also be chronic, and she laughed and was like, “Yes! Absolutely!” Ohhhhh.

ADHD is a lot of things, but not being able to start on the tasks I know I need to start on is a huge part of it. “Just go do it, it’s easy!” It’s not easy for me. That is the most consequential way my ADHD presents.

Then they all feed into each other in a compounding loop. ADHD means I can’t get started on a task. That increases my anxiety, which makes it harder to focus, which ramps up my ADHD even more. ADHD means I can hyperfocus on anything that isn’t related to the task at hand. But I start to realize “I’m doing it again” and then my depression starts up. Now I’m anxious, depressed, and can’t focus…which means it is harder to focus, which means I’m more anxious, etc. ad infinitum.

If this seems familiar to you and you don’t have a diagnosis for any of these things, you should think about trying to get a referral to a psychiatrist.

12. Just existing.

General apathy. Not deep dark soul crushing pain or sadness, just feeling nothingness towards everything.

You lose interest in your hobbies, things don’t make you happy or sad, you just sort of exist and go through the motions.

11. Feeling defeated.

That is what I have been defeating these past months. I have to force myself to clean my place, I have to force myself to do the laundry, I have to force myself to go to the grocery store…

It seems like a task that will only take up to 2 hours, but it is soooo hard to do it. I have been retraining myself to think otherwise.

I am noticing improvements within myself, because the forcefulness isn’t as intense as it used to be.

10. Nothing matters.

At first you’re kind of wistful that you can’t seem to connect with other people anymore and then you realize you can’t even really connect with yourself anymore and that should be soul crushing but it’s just more meh.

9. Nothing gets finished.

The inability to complete tasks or meet deadlines no matter how important they are or how much it’s a task you normally enjoy doing.

It’s strange and I don’t know if people talk about it as much, but at least for me it’s not necessarily laying around in bed all day, it’s more like just not paying my bills on time even though I have the money because I don’t want to turn on my laptop, or get up and find my login info to pay something. I know I’ll get late fees and fall behind and I literally have the money and still just don’t do it.

Or, starting a task and essentially sitting staring at it for hours until you eventually abandon it totally even though you wanted to do it and really didn’t require anything of you. When I feel like this it will take me 3 days to finish a piece of jewelry that would normally take an hour, or not packing up my Etsy orders for a week even though it takes literal minutes.

It’s like a hugely weird blend of inability to focus and total apathy and disregard of consequences.

8. Some are struggling more than others.

Embarrassingly I know this trap well. I can already tell I’m sliding downwards because it’s getting easier and easier to cancel things and I’m feeling more isolated and puzzled by people.

I hate losing progress like this, but you’re right, this pandemic is in some ways my ideal life – but I know it’s doing me no good. I’m actually anxious about topics that excite me usually, it just feels too overwhelming to try and shepherd my thoughts into anything resembling sense.

Replying scares the shit out of me.

7. It’s costly.

I pay (or don’t pay, rather) my bills the very same way. And have for years, which has cost me an amount of money that I don’t really want to think about adding up.

Thank you for at least confirming I am not the only one doing something I absolutely understand is dumb but doing it anyways.

Best of luck to you, fam.

6. They want to do nothing.

I don’t want to go anywhere. I don’t want to watch anything on tv. I don’t want to play any games. I don’t want to read any books. I don’t want to paint. I don’t want to leave the house. I don’t want to listen to music. I don’t want to go to bed.

I can’t remember the last time I had fun or laughed or enjoyed something and I don’t really want to fix it. I’d like something to take the time between now and bedtime but I’m too meh to find something to do.

Then I do sleep and I wake up but why get out of bed because there’s nothing I really want to do. I’m not sad, I’m just nothing and I’m tired of the nothing.

5. A brain slump.

Nope definitely not you.

Basically, the second something is required of me (no matter how small or insignificant) when I’m in this slump , my brains like “Nah.”

It’s like a direct correlation between “need to do this thing” and “oh this needs to be done? Should be done? Don’t care, we aren’t doing it.”

Sorry you go through this too, as someone who is generally meticulous and on top of everything, it’s infuriating to live with.

4. Mind and body work against you.

And sometimes it can turn on a dime. Just earlier today I was walking laps in a park in my neighborhood, and a wave of apathy suddenly hit.

My shoulders lowered, I started looking down instead of forward, and I went a step or two slower.

When you start thinking “what’s the point”, the rest of your body seems to automatically work less efficiently.

3. It doesn’t have to make sense.

There are times I will wait to do laundry until all my work clothes are disgusting, and I’m washing the least gross shirt in the sink 30 minutes before my shift even though I had the last three days off.

It makes NO sense.

In my experience (maybe it’s been different for you I don’t know) but because I’m not just laying in bed in a dark room all day crying and refusing to answer my phone ( not that there’s any shame in that either) and still manage to appear to at least moderately function people really refuse believe that anything is actually wrong with you.

If I was REALLY depressed, I wouldn’t be able to still manage to hold down a job, or make dinner, etc. so obviously I’m just lazy and looking for attention and just need to be more responsible.

2. A silent soundtrack.

This is one of the things that made me realize I was depressed. Normally I play music on another tab all day while I work at my computer.

Somebody sent me a YouTube link to a song, and it made me realize oh huh, I’ve just literally forgotten to listen to music, and worked in silence, for like a year.

Then when I went to try to pick some music to put on, I wasn’t in the mood for any of it and choosing felt like just another overwhelming task, and I continued in silence.

1. Living for bedtime.

I am bipolar but in my depressive states I wake up in the morning and my first thought is I just want the day to be over so I can go to bed again.

It’s crazy the toll our mental health can take on our physical and emotional, don’t you think?

If you or someone you love has struggled with depression, share you own different symptoms down in the comments (if you would)!