Posted in Mental Health

An Open Apology to Anyone With Depression

An important read for anyone who has “well-splained” about positive thinking and forcing a smile. These things do not work and can be dangerous, so please consider that the person with depression knows more about the subject than somebody who does not have depression.

Defying Shadows

This apology is for all the people with depression I’ve spoken with, written with, worked with and met, and all the lovely souls dedicated to helping us spread the word on depression and mental illness at the University of Colorado Depression Center:

I’m sorry. I didn’t get it. I owe you an apology. A huge one.

Please accept my sincere words.

I realized I “wellsplained” an entire group of people.

How did I “wellsplain”? I offered simple answers for a very complex group of symptoms.

For every time I said, “Get more sunshine! Laugh more. Smile! Get exercise. Exercise gives you endorphins! Endorphins help alleviate depression! Choose to be happy. Eat more whole foods” — I’m sorry.

Every time I hear myself saying those things I shudder now — I’m so sorry.

I didn’t get it. I disease-shamed you all, and you were nothing but nice back.

And yes, each of those…

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Author:

I go by the name of Frank Speaking. My blog "In the Mind of Men" (former name Chin Up, Chest High) started out as a chronicle of my mental health recovery. Now it is a forum where I discuss issues related to male mental health.

3 thoughts on “An Open Apology to Anyone With Depression

  1. I have depression. I have been suffering it since college after multiple accumulated rejections by women romantically and feeling treated as if I were invisible rather than a human being. I also got body image issues time to time from being body shamed by a woman during college, not feeling up to the mark as far as being “ideal” physically, as I am thin, short and not the most muscular. I was also shamed in college by some women for being open in displaying crying if I felt touched emotionally or had feelings of inadequacy/feeling treated unfairly and hurt feelings. I still feel under the mark at times in regards to not being an “ideal man”, being shorter, physically weaker and having lower self-confidence due to being rejected since middle school by the opposite sex. In college, two women treated me like shit for openly crying. I also felt overlooked due to being shorter and less outgoing and well built than other guys, who got much more attention from women. I got 0 dates in college. My only girlfriend was my LDR ex from Indonesia who I met online who was 5 years older, but me and her broke up due to her being emotionally, and verbally abusive. My ex shamed me at times for “not handling her bluntness. She played mind games on me, played hot and cold and at times withheld affection.

    1. Very sorry to hear that but your story is one that is repeated time and time again.

      I too was very shy around women when younger. I am not particularly tall, have been overweight most of my life, and I too have been shamed for being too emotional. You learn to put up with it, and you damage yourself.

      I have come to terms with my own risk of mental illness and have decided to wear my heart on my sleeve. Any woman who expects me to act like an alpha male will receive nothing less than my disdain. Your dignity is worth more than any woman’s fragile ego.

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