I’m Miserable — This Is How I Deal with It – Bipolar Burble Blog

Don’t ask me how I am. Just don’t do it. Asking me how I am will only result in one of two things: a dishonest answer or honest tears. I don’t particularly care for any of the results. This is because I am miserable. I am terribly depressed and have been through a couple of unfortunate situations recently. I do my best to ignore all of that; After all, nothing can be done, but when I think about how I am, I get very angry. I know what I am. I’m horrible.

Why am I miserable

I guess it doesn’t really matter why I feel miserable. You could feel miserable for countless reasons. For me, it happens to be the intersection of interpersonal rejection, housing displacement, and depression. Any one of those things can make a person miserable, but having all three is a ticket to assured misery.

How being miserable affects me

For me, depression and misery represent the overwhelming arc of my day. I wake up miserable. I experience misery. I’m going to be miserable. If you’ve ever been seriously depressed, you know how true this is. Some people experience wavering levels of depression throughout the day, but I’m not in that group right now. I’m in the group of people who experience depression and misery, and that’s it.

I know that sounds relentlessly, unwaveringly horrible. Forks. But it’s not meant to depress you, the reader. It is meant to represent a reality that many people face.

How I deal with being miserable

There are a large number of techniques to deal with depression. I have written about many of them. But the one I use most often during a miserable day is this: distraction. Distraction is my most useful skill for coping with misery. When the depression is deep and dark enough, distraction is the only thing that remotely helps me get through the day.

Distraction from being miserable

Distraction takes many forms. More often than not, I am distracted in several ways at the same time. For example, I usually have the television on while I write. The writing itself is distracting, but if my brain wanders off topic, the noise of the TV is what it focuses on. If the television wasn’t on, the writing wouldn’t be enough to divert my attention from the misery.

When I’m not writing, it’s a combination of news and television on the phone. Sometimes, it’s a combination of puzzles and TV. Sometimes it’s a combination of music and cooking. The point is that one stimulus is not enough. My depression and misery are so strong that they defeat a stimulus. Distraction must be in multiple domains for it to work.

And I can never think about what I really am. I have to focus on anything but that. The reality of where my brain and mind are is soul-destroying.

Can you distract yourself from misery forever?

I’ve been depressed for so long it seems like an eternity, but no, distracting myself from misery is not an eternal solution. You can’t solve a problem you can’t look at. You can’t address a problem that you can’t articulate. It is necessary to understand their misery and depression to have any hope of lessening them.

But in my experience, you have to look at misery and depression very carefully. If you move too fast or get too absorbed, you will suffer pain and perhaps serious burns. You just have to look at it one glance at a time. You barely have to touch it. That way you can get to know it without it devouring you.

How to overcome misery

As I said, there are millions of techniques to deal with depression. There are also a million psychotherapy suggestions and medication options. Any of these things could work to defeat misery. But, in my experience, in endless, intrinsic, ink-black depression, it is the medication that frames the narrative. While coping techniques can save your life, it is the actual treatment that can make you want to live.

I am in a particularly unpleasant situation because I am mostly resistant to treatment. But that doesn’t mean it’s time to give up. The desire to give up is real. The misery seems impossible to survive. But I can survive. I’ve been through it before and I’ll do it again. And if I can, you can too.

Image by Flickr user very impressive.

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