3 Reasons I Want to Be Alone When I'm Depressed

There’s a lot of good loved ones can do for a person who suffers from depression. Being supportive and understanding are great ways to help someone cope. Being there for them is so important, but being there can mean different things. And if you’re like me, I need my loved ones to be there for me from a distance. There are three reasons why I like to be alone during a depressive episode, and because they want to do whatever they can to help me, my friends and family oblige.

1. I don’t want to cry in front of anyone.

I know it isn’t healthy to hide my emotions, so I won’t. And I know it’s OK to cry, so I will. But crying in front of others makes me uncomfortable, and that’s not how I want to feel on top of feeling down. I have a fear of appearing weak, even when I’m assured I’m not. I have a fear of being judged, even though my friends and family promise they won’t judge. I will cry, I will get the emotion out, but I’d prefer to do it alone.

2. I don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings.

During a depressive episode, I’m easily annoyed and irritable, especially with those around me. I feel like I can’t control my emotions or how I project them, and I don’t want to take my unpleasant attitude out on those who are only trying to help me. It would make me feel so much worse were I to snap at someone and hurt their feelings, and I really don’t want to feel worse.

3. I’m not ready to talk… yet.

When I’m in the throws of depression, it’s hard for me to explain what I’m feeling to those who ask. I don’t want to keep those feelings to myself because I know they could manifest into something more, but I’d rather write about them, journal them out instead of talk right away. If my feelings get to be too much or if my thoughts turn scary, I will reach out, and I will talk. But not until I’m ready.

I know a symptom of depression is the want to be isolated, but it’s not that I want to be alone, I need to be alone. Maybe it’s just me, but that is what I need. I know this can worry those close to me, which is why I promise to reach out when I need help. This is the support I need from my friends and family when I’m depressed. Support from a distance. They can still be there for me, without being there beside me.

If you or someone you know needs help, see our suicide prevention resources.

If you need support right now, call the Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255.

Find this story helpful? Share it with someone you care about.

Related to Depression

The author with Drogon, her pet bearded dragon

When Becoming a 'Mother of Dragons' Helped Me With Depression and Anxiety

Last October, my husband and I took our two kids to the local reptile show. It had become a yearly tradition to go; from petting zoos, venomous snake displays and breeders showing off rare morphs, it was something everyone in our family enjoyed. Both my husband and I had owned reptiles before, so to us [...]
four men receding into the distance

What the Sadness of Depression Really Feels Like

When depression comes up while I’m talking to a friend, I often use simple, cliched ways to describe it. I tell them I’m having a rough day, or I’m exhausted, or I’m just feeling off. It’s so much easier and less upsetting for them, I think, than explaining what’s really going on emotionally. For a long time, [...]
man sitting on floor

Hitting Depression's Rockbottom

There I was laying on my bed, feeling like my body was empty, no feelings, no energy… nothing. Only one thing in my body didn’t feel empty: my head. Inside my head lived my worst enemy, my nightmare, my killer, my brain. I laid there for hours and couldn’t stand up. My thoughts were slowly killing [...]

Dear Depression: Here Are the Words I'm Slowly Learning How to Say

Dear depression, We go way back. You’ve haunted me for years, hiding in the back empty corners of my mind, waiting to take hold of my heart and paint all the windows black. Dear depression, You are the shadows in my room on a bright and sunny day. Your weariness took my bones and taught them too young [...]