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That makes sense to me. I mean, my dad’s approach was less than helpful at times, but I did know it was coming from a place of wanting me to succeed. And eventually I realized he had some of the same issues, and he was trying to give me the only toolkit that had worked for him.
There’s a fine line between compassionate support and actively detrimental words in depression, so sometimes I have to come back to something and read it later — or many times later. Someone can say something along the lines of “Get up and get moving!” to me when I’m deeply depressed and I’ll interpret it as condescending, unsupportive and clueless. Someone can say the EXACT SAME WORDS to me as I’m recovering, starting to live again, or in a great mood, and I’ll interpret it as either a) not really helpful, but the best support person can offer or b) a friendly supportive hand up or even c) a funny joke.
I’ve ridden the yo-yo enough now to be honest with myself that **for me,** it’s my interpretation, not the words themselves, that’s the issue. Learning how to be compassionate to my friends as well as myself and saying, “hey, right now that’s not helpful, try it when I’m feeling better” (even if I only say it to myself) instead of being driven into the ground by their comments has been an immensely powerful tool in my emotional arsenal.
uh, which is also a digression. I should go do my homework now…