When You Compare Your Depression's Severity to Others

Dear Depression,

You have always been a quiet companion. You come long before I realize you’ve claimed your part of the bed. We talk constantly, and our conversations are repetitive. We never fail to bring up all my failures and the pointlessness of any effort I make to create a good life. You don’t let me eat much or shower much. We spend a lot of time in my room, but we go out and live life, too. I’ve brought you to work, to school, to my friends’ homes. You make things harder but not impossible. You always overstay your welcome, but I know how to send you home. A trip to the therapist, a few life changes here and there, and I’ll see you soon.

But often, you make me feel like a fraud. I’ve seen others named Depression, and they blow through with a gravity I never see in you. Some live with their partners year around.

When I see what depression is like with other people, I want to call you something different. Sadness. Or Laziness. Maybe Just Who I Am? Anything but Depression, because when you’re here, you don’t really announce yourself like the others.

Then I think if you were able to hear me say any of this, you’d be pretty upset. You all have the same name, but like the chemicals in my body, you share a home with and the experiences that led me to you, you are unique. I know this. But when my body starts to slow and the weight of my world is too much, I sometimes feel guilty for calling you Depression. Shouldn’t you be louder, heavier?

But you are an individual, as am I. I’m not any less human because I speak infrequently, and you are no less depression because you’re quieter than others, or louder than some. Like the people of this world, you express yourself in your own voice. I’m sorry it took me a while to realize this, but now I can get to know you better.

You are my depression, and you are enough.

We want to hear your story. Become a Mighty contributor here.

Getty Images photo via Wavebreakmedia

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

Related to Depression

woman hugging depressed friend at home support

9 Ways to Be a Good Friend to Someone With Depression

I have been fortunate to have great friends throughout the entire time I have been dealing with my depression — my best friend since middle school, good friends from church and close friends at school. They have all played a part in helping my recovery. Being friends with someone struggling with depression can be difficult. It’s [...]
Black-haired mature woman is upset and frustrated about celebrating Christmas alone. Woman drinks coffee, head is propped up with her hand. Dark blurred indoors background with decorated tree

The Truth About Not Having a Biological Family Around the End-of-Year Season

It is that time of year again — the end of year, where even if you do not celebrate Christmas (like me and my household), the chaos of the season still brushes off on everyone far and wide. With this bustling and hustling comes an innate sense of loneliness that I struggle with each and [...]
a young woman sits on the streets with her phone in her hand

My Bad Days With 'High-Functioning' Depression

My parents say I’m too smart to be this sad. They tell me “no, no.” “You’re ‘high-functioning.’” Because most days I can control my impulses and convince myself that my brain is being illogical. And maybe they’re right, maybe I’m overreacting. Maybe every day isn’t as bad as the bad days make it seem. But [...]
african american woman stands in a dark room

What I Didn't Know About Depression Until I Faced It Myself

Gloomy. Blue. Unhappy. Sad as hell. Depression. For a long time, these words all meant the same thing to me. Depression has always seemed to be a self-imposed sadness to me. I could never understand why, if people were depressed or struggled with depression, they didn’t just stop being sad. To me, it was simple. [...]