You Said What? The 5 Worst Things Said to Me

 

Today’s personal post from a staff member departs a bit from our usual content.  We hope you enjoy!

My name is Rachel.  I have depression and seasonal affective disorder, and it began in my teenage years.  The following is a list of the 5 worst and 5 best things said to me about my conditions, both in real life and through media.

Starting off with the 5 worst:

  1. “Just snap out of it. It’s all in your head.”
  2. “A lot of people have it worse.”
  3. “You’re just being a teenager. We all go through tough times.”
  4. “Pray more. Try harder.”
  5. “You’re just trying to get attention.”

These kinds of statements make me feel ashamed, isolated, and stuck.

On the other hand, the following have helped me feel valid and think, “maybe I can do this”:

  1. “I can’t take away your pain, but we will get through this together.”
  2. “You are not alone. I’m here for you.”
  3. “Your feelings are valid. You matter to me.”
  4. Not necessarily saying anything, but just being there.
  5. Listening to understand me, not to fix me.

P.S. — While relatable posts are great, getting the help you need CAN really make a difference.  So, here are 5 resources* I’ve found helpful:

  1. Seeing therapy and a doctor—there are affordable options!
  2. Learning about my conditions at NIMH.nih.gov
  3. I like using the free apps Pacifica and MY3, which help me keep track of my health, chat with peers, and plan so I don’t need to panic when a crisis might happen.
  4. Talking to peer counselors and friends, and taking a WRAP (Wellness Recovery Action Plan) class
  5. Facing suicidal thoughts and need to talk to someone right now? Call the free 24/7 National Suicide Lifeline 800.273.8255 (English, Spanish language, and Veteran options), –or– Text “NAMI” to 741-741, the Crisis Text Line.

Thank you to Mom and family for “being there” for me, and NAMI DuPage, Faith, Amy, and many friends.

*these tips are not necessarily the views and opinions of NAMI DuPage