When Depression Makes You Think Life Isn't Worth Living
Depressive episodes can take a real toll on my self-esteem.The onset of depression brings about questions and doubts about myself. Things like: “Am I doing the right thing in my life?” “Are my relationships all they can be?” “Am I really a valuable person?”
Depression can answer these questions in some pretty sad and discouraging ways:
You’re on the wrong track for life, change course now or forever be a failure.
You’re dragging down the people you love, best to leave them behind.
No, you can’t possibly be valuable, not with all your problems.
Anyone who has ever experienced depression knows thoughts like these. Thoughts of worthlessness, of utter despair at the thought of oneself, maybe even disgust or repulsion. Depression can really make the mirror a difficult sight to see.
Every status you have is called into question. Are you a good enough parent? Friend? Sibling? Child? Partner? All of these aspects of life are fair game for depression to leak into and try to poison, and it can be easy to let it. Fighting depression is a monumental task many don’t realize the difficulty of. It’s especially hard when it makes you question your value as a human being, the very foundation of our identity.
Every action I do is brought to scrutiny. Did I make the right decision? Should I have done things differently? What would my life be like if I hadn’t done that? The doubt that comes into play with decisions is also debilitating, as it digs up old feelings of anxiety and pressure over decisions I have to make in life. And all of those things can be used as ammunition to make me feel like I always mess up.
Depression is a fantastic liar. It can tell me all kinds of untrue things about myself — that my life is not worth living and doesn’t have meaning or purpose or value. The truth is none of those things are true. Every life is worthy of its existence, and that includes you. You may be going through some pretty rough stuff. Like, really, really rough stuff — stuff others may not be able to understand. And you may make some mistakes here and there, it’s part of being human. But ultimately nothing can change the fact that you are a valuable person, a beautiful person and strong person to have survived so long through what you’re going through. Don’t let the liar that is depression tell you any differently.
Unsplash photo via Berwin Coroza