I spend a lot of time trying to figure out exactly why I feel and think like I do. One of the main purposes of this blog is to help others to understand why they’re feeling the way they are too. There’s a lot to be said for figuring out what’s upsetting you, or triggering you, or wearing you down… and then changing it.
Sometimes, however, you can’t change it.
Sometimes you’ve done the best you can do and it’s still affected you negatively.
Sometimes the only thing that can help is time.
I’ve had one of those moments lately. I mentioned a problem housemate in my last entry. He caused me a lot of mental and emotional problems. I won’t even say that he triggered emotional problems, because it was a severe enough situation that I would have had issues even if I’d been the paragon of mental health to begin with. He scared me, and the situation shook me badly.
Now the situation is resolved. He’s been evicted, and he hasn’t re-appeared since. It’s over. But I’m still shaken. And there’s this bit in my brain that says “But you know what’s wrong! You know it’s sorted. You know he’s gone. You know you’re safe. So why are you still upset?” No matter what I do I can’t shake that voice. It’s in league with the brain-gremlins. It’s trying to convince me that once I’ve analysed the situation and figured it out I should suddenly be okay. It’s accusing me of overreacting/wallowing because I can’t just get over this. It’s wrong.
So this is a reminder, to me, to you, to everyone out there who needs reminding:
Just because you know what’s upset you, that doesn’t mean you should be able to move on.
Just because something that shook you deeply is over, that doesn’t mean you should be fine.
Just because you understand something, that doesn’t make it go away.
You need to get to understand your depression to learn how to cope with it. It’s hugely helpful, and you won’t regret it, but understanding is just one step. Another one is acceptance: Accepting that this illness does affect you, and that it’s not because you’re “weak” or “a failure” but because you’re human, and that’s how the human brain works.