Thank you for the time you took to reply. I really appreciate it.
I want to be easier on myself but damn its hard.
Indeed, it’s hard to learn to be a little more gentle with ourselves. It’s a foundation we can build progressively, certainly with lots of trials and errors as well, but what an important one. It is worth the effort because you are worth it.
I feel like a twisted part of me enjoys being sad, because that’s what I think I deserve I guess. Good things happen to me, then over time the happiness fades and I become like this. I can never stay happy for long, I feel like I just take advantage of everything and everyone. Definitely feels like nobody gets it, but I know that’s irrational.
I don’t think that’s twisted or irrational at all. Actually I think that what you describe really makes sense. Sadness - and let’s say “darkness” in general - can be attractive, especially if it became your comfort zone, also if you integrated the idea that a part of you is deeply tied to those emotions. If you let go of those moments, those emotions and feelings that feel so familiar, then who would you be?
That’s a question I’ve been asking myself repeatedly while battling with depression, even recently. I know what I’m supposed to do to take care of myself. I am genuinely grateful for the people and things I have in my life. I embrace joyful moments as much as possible. But I keep coming to the point of being awake at night and letting myself drown in what’s often perceived as being “negative” emotions. During those moments, I feel more deeply. Though if there’s something that being depressed made me learn, it’s the incredible subtelties that “sadness” can hold. I have a personal experience of sadness and melancholia that are a lot more in-depth than happiness. Probably because I spent more time feeling the first ones - mostly unintentionally - than the second one.
It really makes sense, Ahoka. And you’re right, believing that this darkness is where you belong can surely impact how much those cycles happen. Also how much you’re willing to dive into it or not. Actually, a lot of our experiences stem out of the incredible amount of beliefs that we have, including about ourselves. If you’re used to think that you don’t deserve good things, then saying “I’m happy to be happy” can sound fake to your ears… but even more to your heart. Those beliefs can be unlearned though, and those cycles can be broken, at your own pace.
I’ve tried talking to my family about things in the past, but I don’t want to make them sad.
I hear you. And that’s very loving of you to care about their well-being. Though the equation is, I believe, a little bit different. The way you expressed that, it feels like you have to chose between reaching out or protecting the people you love. But being sad for someone because they’re going through a rough time is part of love. As human beings, we have a capacity of empathy - and not only sympathy - which is beautiful. On a different note, how someone feels is not your responsability. You can’t prevent someone who loves you to share your pain with you. A good way to challenge that sometimes is to ask yourself: “What if someone I love was in the same situation? What would I like to say to them?”. It helps to see how unfair we can be with ourselves, and just learn to make more and more right decisions for our own well-being.
I want to find the path to better mental health, but I feel very lost and lonely. I’ve tried many things, I worked out in the summer, I eat healthy, I’ve been learning how to cook, how to play guitar, I stopped playing video games altogether, I quit alcohol, and more. I feel like I’ve tried everything but I’m unfixable.
Indeed, that’s a LOT of awesome changes and definitely something you can be proud of. I hope you allowed yourself to take some time to celebrate your efforts. And if you didn’t yet, maybe just to think about it and say to yourself: “I did it”.
I feel like I know myself better than anyone else could, so how could someone like a therapist tell me something I don’t already know?
It’s not just a feeling; you know yourself better than anyone else. You are the first and only expert of your own story and heart, and that is something no one can take away from you. No one is in your shoes, your mind, your body - your experience of being in this world is uniquely yours.
That being said, it doesn’t delete the fact that therapists can be pretty helpful. But you probably know that already: it’s hard to find the right one + the therapy that suits you. We’re lucky enough to live in a time when we have some choice regarding the variety of therapies, which also means that we’re likely to wander a little before we find the one that echoes with our heart at the moment. Your past experience with a therapist for example is not wasted. You can learn from it as it can help you to identify what you DON’T want from a therapist/therapy.
I don’t know if this image will speak to you at all, but I personally like to keep it simple and see it as a meeting with another human being. The only difference is that this person is trained to feed our conversations while following my own pace. They are supposed to meet us where we are when we see them, and not to push us one way or another. In other words, it’s not a fight where someone has to be right or wrong, only a place of learning and reflections. As for any meeting with someone else, sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t. Though I believe a good therapist is not here to tell you who you are, but to help you find your own answers in yourself. It comes through sudden revelations that you can have at 2am without expecting it, but also through a lot of seasons when it feels like you’re going nowhere. At least, that’s my view on therapy - and honestly, I relate a lot to what you said… I’d be very upset if someone starts to “teach” me who I am while I spent a very long time already to understand and better myself… on my own.
I’m not trying to convince you by the way. Just sharing a personal perspective, as I hear that you’d also like to give it a try again. Though this decision is entirely yours. It’s already good to think about it. In any case, your concerns and your view are absolutely valid. I’d say… dare to be curious and to challenge those beliefs whenever you feel ready. Stepping out of our comfort zone is often worth it. And if not… well, know that you always have a safety net here in this community.