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My parents don't believe I'm depressed

My parents always tell me if I need to reach out when I’m depressed please tell them. But every time I do they say oh, don’t be depressed. They say this because they don’t have depression. I feel like no one respect or understands me. It sucks I live with my parents. What’s even worse is they make me see a therapist and I’m on medication. I blame my parents big time for this. My life will never have a chance to make a difference. Someone please shoot me.


Hey @Nothingnear,

I’m sorry you feel like your parents don’t understand what you’re experiencing. Depression is a real struggle and what you feel is absolutely valid. When someone says “don’t feel…”, “don’t be…”, they’re ignoring what you’re sharing. It makes sense to feel upset because of their reaction. You need to feel heard, understood and cared for.

When it’s about mental health, there can be a gap between generations in the way it’s understood. I’m not saying your parents are right in the way they respond to you. It just sounds that whether they don’t really understand what you are going through, or they are not really comfortable with the idea of talking about it. Depression can be scary for our loved ones. There’s a lot of stigmas and misunderstandings around this. It can make them both willing to be supportive but not really knowing how. There are people who can’t listen because they’re not able to. But as your parents told you that you can reach out to them if needed, I want to believe that this might be a matter of learning how to communicate effectively with them. It can be hard for you to find the right words to express how you feel, and it can be hard for them to understand. Maybe trying to let them know what you expect from them when you reach out could be a way to initiate a new dynamic between you. Maybe you could use some written resources about depression and explain how much this is close to your experience or not. Maybe your therapist could also be an ally and help you all to create this supportive system that you need.

I know it’s tempting to make general assumptions when we’re disappointed by our loved ones. But I want to reframe a bit what you said here:

I feel like no one respect or understands me.

It may feel like this, but it’s not necessarily true as a matter of fact. Just here in this community, there are a lot of people who can understand and relate to your own experience, just because unfortunately depression is something that many of use are facing. Ultimately your experience, your story, your journey are yours only. But I can assure you that you are not alone in this. Maybe your parents are not equipped to support you through this. Maybe they need to learn, at their own pace, and understand how they could help. In both cases, know that you have a safety net here as well. You are among friends. You are seen, heard, respected. There’s a lot of value just in the fact that you take some time to share about what’s going on in your life. :hrtlegolove:

Therapy and medications are also here to help you. But it sounds that it wasn’t your decision at first. It makes sense to feel upset because of it. I don’t know for how long you’ve been on therapy, or if you feel okay with your current therapist, but I can encourage you to give yourself some grace and time through this process. The effects might be long to appear, but the very fact that you are trying is already a step further. You can be proud of what you’re doing for your well-being. Those are some very huge and important steps. If at some point you want to share about your experience with therapy, feel absolutely free to do it here. Reflecting on your own experience can help to find some clarity sometimes.

You’re going through a tough season, but you will make it through. Your life is not over. I believe in you.


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