#If depression were a choice, I would not have witnessed as a child of the ups and very bad downs of my mum’s mental health. I would not have worried whether she would disappear again, like before.
If depression were a choice, after seeing how it affected me personally as a child and, also how it affects other people and their families, then I would not choose depression myself. Because after all, it is no fun.
If depression were a choice, I would not struggle to get out of bed some mornings, or sometimes worry about the day ahead.
If depression were a choice, I would not have wished at one time that I was dead and that I was of no use to this world.
If depression were a choice, then I would choose to not have depression. But unfortunately it is not that easy.
If depression were a choice, then I would not have needed the doctor, counsellor or my medication.
If depression were a choice, then my mind would choose to stop dwelling on things.
If the bad experiences of childhood (including bullying, if I did not have enough already,) and early adulthood had not happened, then I would be able to stop my brain having the memories of those days and re-living them.
Until you have been in my shoes, or other people’s shoes of people suffering mental health, then you do not know. So please do not judge.
What I experience to another person it is different. I know how my experiences affect me, but it does not mean I know fully how it affects the next person. I can only be there to support, or to just listen.
Receiving comments of the following I write below, that I have heard personally myself over the years, are not helpful at all.
- You can choose not to dwell on things
- It happened to you a long time ago and so you should put it behind you
- There’s no point living in the past
- Isn’t it time you moved on?
So until you have been in our shoes, suffered what we have suffered, you will not know how exactly how our past affects our mental health. So do not judge, but listen to our stories and try to understand how it affects us.
If depression were a choice, then I would choose not to have depression.
© Elizabeth Fisher and My Wellbeing and Learning Journey.
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