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Depression, You Suck: Here Are 18 People Whose Hobbies You Stole

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Have you ever heard of “anhedonia?” It’s the symptom of depression responsible for taking away the things you love to do: the “loss of interest” mentioned on assessment forms and medical sites. It comes in all shapes and sizes, from feeling “meh” about your favorite TV show to losing all ability to pursue a hobby you previously found rewarding.

It’s a frustrating symptom, and honestly, makes depression even worse. You can read more about anhedonia here, but the point is this: When depression strikes, it often steals the hobbies and pastimes most valuable to you. Depression took my love of playing guitar — a hobby I was never particularly world-class at, but which helped when the depression came calling… until it didn’t. I’m a writer who regularly loses the motivation and joy of reading. Similarly, it took my fiction writing, but that’s a whole different kettle of fish mixed up in executive dysfunction and a lack of self-belief.

I know I’m not the only one who feels like this, so I wanted to ask our community what depression took from them. Collected below are just some of their answers. When depression snuck in, these 18 people all lost something that made them happy.

Here’s what they told us:

“Hiking and going out to restaurants and places with my friends to have a drink. I can’t drink or smoke anymore. I’m getting back in the grove of painting.” — @kristenbaker7

“Actually, chronic pain took away my guitar playing. Now, I’m so depressed I don’t feel like picking it up again. Plus I’m afraid it will cause my neck and shoulder pain to return.” — @toddio

“I no longer have the motivation to bike or cross-country ski. My depression makes it unenjoyable.” — @shaynabreslin

“I can’t read. I can’t concentrate. I just ignore my crafts I usually work on. I don’t do any coloring. Many crafts are left undone. I just don’t feel like doing anything.” — @01-mountains

“Reading. I can’t focus.” — @fathousewife

“I used to have so much creativity bottled up that I was able to act on with great joy and satisfaction, i.e. sewing, needlepoint, jewelry making, and much more. I was able to imagine something and bring it to fruition. Depression has stolen my motivation (especially in recent years), my creative mind, thus leaving me without feelings of achievement or gratification that I once thrived on. I want these feelings of living back. I struggle daily to find myself among so much sadness. It feels time is being wasted by what I could be doing.” — @dgtwogirls

“I miss human contact, nature photography, writing stories, reading books, walking around the river, exploring downtown, museums, music, rigid heddle weaving, listening to stand-up comedy, embroidery, building fairy gardens, deep conversations over fantastic coffee, calligraphy, making paper and papercrafts, jewelry making, perler bead art, building hanging lamps, chemical glass etching, sewing, free online classes covering everything from programming to law to ethics to germ theory, the entire world on the other side of my front door. Piece by piece, bipolar disorder has taken everything that makes life worth living.” — @jennifernykanen

“Bicycling. I no longer have the energy or motivation.” — @jeffey

“As I read these comments, tears were welling up. I’ve lost years of memories due to postpartum psychosis in 2008, my past childhood sexual trauma/abuse, seeing traumatic events as a registered nurse, and a horrific crime targeted at my family. Severe depression, amongst others. I look back on pictures of me and I have no idea who she is. I don’t recognize myself anymore. I used to sing, dance, play the piano, volunteer, teach nursing students, go on wild adventures and meet up with friends. I miss her.” — @aubreyjade1986

“Getting lost in a good book.” — @evelynnryan

“Playing my flute. I was good enough to get multiple scholarship offers and I never pick it up anymore. It makes me sad to know something I was so passionate about has been abandoned because of depression.” — @karenhoover1

“Crafts, reading, socializing, and walking at nature sites or the beach.” — @iamenough12

“Painting. I used to practice all the time and now I look at my supplies with exhaustion and think, ‘maybe tomorrow.’ Sadly, tomorrow ends up just being a repeat of the day before.” — @christinamitchell7

“Long before I was on medication, I used to love writing poetry. It was my way of dealing with the suffering from the deep depression. Years later, not only has depression stolen my ability to enjoy writing, but the medicine plays a role too. But I need my medication in order to be stable. I still struggle with depression, but I have periods of time where I am happy, where without the meds I stayed depressed all of the time.” — @maddiej

“I used to ride horses. I don’t ride anymore due to the high expense of the sport and farmland is quickly disappearing to be developed. I also liked to ride my bike on a regular basis a few times a week. Now my anxiety and fear gets the best of me. Small clubs around me are also dispersing due to low ridership.” — @taradougherty2

“Playing my fiddle. I run out of time because I procrastinate on the work I need to do. Or I sleep. So I have no spare time.” — @muffin2

“Read. I worked in the book industry for many years and read furiously. Now I can’t concentrate long enough to read a magazine article” — @hapime2

“Concerts, festivals, and general parties after 9 p.m. My energy balance can’t take it anymore. Late nights worsen my depression, plus crowds and loud noises worsen my anxiety.” — @loesb

Getty image by Zinkevych

Originally published: September 14, 2022
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