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When Depression Won't Let You Get Over a Bad Friendship

I’m going to paint you a picture to try and help you understand the full story of my experience:

You are a young girl struggling with depression. One day you meet a guy and it’s like all the color comes back into your world. You develop a friendship with said guy, and for the first time since you were diagnosed, you feel good about yourself.

He’s wonderful and he chose to be friends with you. You spend long nights talking and his friendship gives you hope for recovery. Being friends with him makes depression seem less scary, because you finally have someone on your side.

Unfortunately, the mix of depression and anxiety makes it impossible to stay happy and confident. He starts texting you less. Your heart breaks. Depression tells you that there must be something wrong with you. What did you do wrong to make him run away so fast?

Things get so bad that he doesn’t want to be friends anymore. Most people would be sad for a while before eventually moving on. But you are not most people. Months later, depression takes control of you and all you can think about is what went wrong with him. Why weren’t you enough? It gets to the point where you hate him because you miss him.

Your friends worry about you. Why can’t you move on from someone who treated you so poorly? Moving on isn’t an option. This guy made you feel so good and you can’t replace the feeling. In the midst of heartache and heartbreak, he made you feel OK. Without him, depression tells you life isn’t possible. No one will ever be able to make you feel good again. You will never feel good again.

Months later, you can’t let go. Your self-esteem is at an all-time low and missing him is at an all-time high. Your friends and family tell you to let it go — you’re better off without him. It’s probably true, but all you know is that overtime when you see him, your heart breaks a little bit more; and every day you go without talking to him, you sink further into a hole. You know it’s not love, it’s not attraction that keeps you missing him — it’s depression.

When your own mind tells you every second of every day that you are a failure, it sounds like truth. The affirmation you once received from a certain person is the only reason you believe you aren’t all bad. So you’re stuck. Thanks to depression, you’re here, captive to a toxic friendship, scared to be hurt by this person again, but even more terrified of letting go.

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Unsplash photo via Xavier Sotomayor