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19 'Depression Thoughts' People Have When They First Wake Up


Editor's Note

If you experience suicidal thoughts, the following post could be potentially triggering. You can contact the Crisis Text Line by texting “START” to 741741.

When it comes to overthinking, we often cite anxiety as the main culprit. However, people who live with depression can also struggle with intrusive thoughts that impact daily life. It’s not uncommon to deal with these “depression thoughts” first thing in the morning.

Maybe you open your eyes and think, “I can’t wait to go back to sleep tonight.” Or maybe you struggle with darker thoughts like, “I wish I didn’t wake up this morning.” No matter what your depression thoughts look like, we want you to know you’re not alone and there is help available. If your depression thoughts get to be too overwhelming, you can always reach out to our Mighty community by posting a Thought or Question using the hashtag #CheckInWithMe. We’re here for you.

To shed some light on what depression thoughts people experience when they first wake up, we spoke to people in our community who live with depression. Below, you can read what they had to say.

If you experience any of the thoughts mentioned below, you’re not alone. It can be difficult to live with thoughts like these day in and day out, but there’s a cognitive behavioral therapy tool that might help. The tool is called “reframing,” which means to identify and then argue against irrational or harmful thoughts you may have. Reframing helps you look at your thoughts in a new way, which can help you envision other (and often more positive) alternatives. Check out the following stories to learn how to reframe your thoughts.

Here are the “depression thoughts” our community shared with us:

1. ‘I can’t wait to go to bed.’

“‘I can’t wait to come home and crawl into bed.’ I haven’t even gotten out of bed when I think that, but it’s always one of my first thoughts of the day.” — Melissa M.

“‘Awake again? Well, at least if I get up for a little bit it means I’m closer to getting to go back to bed.’” — Jackie P.

2. ‘I survived another night.’

“‘I survived the night.’ I then thank the Creator for giving me another day. I deal with depression, but I’m still grateful to be alive.” — Sonya W.

3. ‘I don’t feel like getting out of bed today.’

“‘I don’t feel like getting out of bed today. My body just feels heavy or my shoulders are. I don’t even feel the strength to do what I used to love even when I think about it constantly. I hope to get back that strength again. Did I oversleep, again?’” — Misty Y.

4. ‘I need to take a mental health day.’

“My first thoughts are usually, ‘Time to put in work to keep the sickness and sadness from creeping in’ or ‘I think I need to take a mental health day or I won’t make it to tomorrow.’” — Abe H.

“‘Do I have to go to work? Can’t I just sleep all day? Should I call in today for a mental health day?’” — Rena H.

5. ‘No, not another day.’

“Occasionally I wake up and think, ‘It’s a good day!’ but some days I can’t help my first thought is, ‘No, not daytime,’ then have to convince myself of positive thoughts and get out of bed if I can’t fall back to sleep.” — Kayla L.

6. ‘What’s the point?’

“Most mornings just getting out of bed is a true struggle. I question what the point of it all is. The day seems overwhelming before it starts. It makes me question if my husband and children really need me. If I wasn’t here, would anyone miss me or would I slowly become a forgotten memory?” — Ashley W.

7. ‘Today is a bad day.’

“‘Why do I even have to get out of bed? The choice has been made for me, today is a bad day. If I go back to sleep and wake up, maybe, maybe I’ll have a say in what kind of day I have.’ Depression controls everything.” — Jordan H.

8. ‘Am I going to waste the day?’

“I wake up at 5 a.m. and leave for the office at 5:15. During the journey, my thoughts start messing with my head. I feel like I am going to waste another day of my life. I keep thinking about my past mistakes and I keep getting anxious about what I am going to do at the office. Right now I am at the office and same thoughts are accompanying me everywhere, every time and every day. I don’t know what to do with my life anymore.” — Anuska D.

9. ‘I don’t want to face the day ahead of me.’

“My first thought is ‘I don’t want to face the day ahead.’ With my job you never know what the shift is going to be like. And how much strength you will be required to use that day.” — Emma-Louise J.

10. ‘Do I really have to do it all again?’

“Best time of the day for me is bedtime. Mornings were/are a real struggle. If I had to sum up my first thoughts in the morning it would be, ‘Do I really have to do it all again?’” — Sharon H.

11. ‘Why am I still here?’

“‘Ahh crap, I woke up’ is the most common. ‘I have so much to do, how will I ever manage it all’ and ‘Why am I still here?’ are a few of the thoughts I [have] in the morning.” — Jemma W.

12. ‘How badly do I need my job?’

“‘How badly do I really need my job?’ ‘Can I get away without showering one more day?’ (a lot harder in the summer) ‘Can I stay in bed a little bit longer?’” — Courtney A.

13. ‘I’m so tired.’

“‘Why’d I wake up? I’m so tired. I don’t want to exist anymore.’ Or just the crushing and exhausting feeling as I lay there trying to decide if getting up is worth it. Depression sucks.” — Era K.

14. ‘Will I make another mistake today?’

“‘Another day of being a disappointment. Will my mind be foggy today, again? Will I be able to put a sentence together without stuttering? Will I forget a detail and make a mistake at work again today?’” — Virginia P.

15. ‘Will I be able to act ‘OK?’

“‘How much strength will I have to act ‘OK?”” — Jack M.

“‘I can’t do this. I can’t face the world today. Can I even muster the strength to put my mask on again? I’m tired of living this life and having to pretend I am OK.’” — Scott T.

16. ‘I wish I didn’t wake up.’

“‘I’m disappointed that I woke up.’ Even on days when I’m not feeling suicidal, I’m usually disappointed that I woke up because it means that I have to face the world and everything that comes with it.” — Sam C.

“‘Oh I woke up today? I wish I hadn’t.’ Living with severe depression and borderline personality disorder some days I’m disappointed that I woke up. I’ve been passively suicidal my entire life. I’m not planning anything but if something did happen to me I know I wouldn’t care and I hate feeling that way because I know I’m loved and important and my family would be devastated.” — Alexis D.

17. ‘What ‘mask’ will I wear today?’

“‘How can I face today? Am I going to be able to get through? What mask shall I put on? Will my sedatives help me deal?’” — Nicola F.

18. ‘I’m not strong enough.’

“‘You are not going to make it through another day because you are not strong enough.’” — Charly B.

19. ‘Same battle, different day.’

“There are some mornings when I think to myself, ‘Same battle, different day.’” — Zachary L.

When you live with depression, thoughts like these can feel both devastating and exhausting. If you deal with “depression thoughts” like these in the morning, you don’t have to go through it alone. To connect with those who “get it” 24/7, you can download our app and post using the hashtag #CheckInWithMe. You have what it takes to fight these thoughts and make it through the day.

For more resources that might help, check out the following stories from our community:

Unsplash photo via Kinga Cichewicz