Rough Times (SA/Depression)


#1

Hey.
I just feel very lonely at this moment and thought it would be good to share my thoughts somewhere on the internet and receive some hope from other people’s experiences.
I’m a 22 year old guy from Portugal, studying civil engeneering. I live well, have a good family that supports me through every decision I make, good friends, a good education…
So don’t get me wrong, I know I’m lucky to have all these things, but I’m going through a rough time: I just feel like I’m stuck in time, like I’m not making any progress in my life… I don’t know what I want to do with it and I don’t even know what that means.
I’m just thinking I’ll never be truly happy because I can’t stand the idea of ​​not having the strength to live the rest of my life (if it continues being like this) and end up with even deeper depression in my thirties. It is kind of a circle thought I’m trapped in.
I’m not going to lie: I’ve had suicidal thoughts in my head, but I think I’ve passed that phase now.
The tears hurt so much leaving my eyes while I write this… I mean, there’s so many things in this world to love but I just can’t find any or I’m too afraid to take the chance…
I think I’m in the worst time of my life so far, there are many bad things happening that I can’t focus on the good. It’s being so hard… I hope this is only in my head.
I’m just unable to be happy at this moment and I feel so bad because I can’t explain this feeling to anyone.


#2

hello, I wish life would get better for you. I feel sorry for you and I wish I could make you feel better, if I could. let me just give you some general advice. talk to your family and your close friends. Find someone you can trust and confide in him or her.
I hope you get better


#3

Hello,

I agree with what Joseph says here. At the worst times, and hopefully before, reach out to those who can listen to you and support you and help you get through rough periods. We all need that. These are particularly the times when we DON’T tend to reach out to others, but these are also the times when we should. It sounds like you do have some good family and friends around you to help you, to listen.

You didn’t quite say what was making you feel so depressed. I assume you are here in this forum because it would have something to do with social anxiety disorder. Depression for most of us who suffer social anxiety is also a big problem. Naturally we would feel depressed most of the time if social anxiety is making life a living hell.

Sometimes people ask when social anxiety usually begins in most people’s lives. There’s not one single answer for this. But, I do tend to see that people start reaching out for help from around the end of university years to around 30 years old on average. Perhaps it just takes time to build up the courage to face this or to tell others. Also I think there is another reason, and this is just an average age from what I see here in the groups - I think that we all tend to go through the prescribed, anticipated, relatively controlled stages of schooling - high school, then college… and we still may feel “on track”, on the same level as our peers. No, we don’t feel good or even really ready, and we don’t feel we know what we are doing with our lives even then because it’s hard to consider life when social anxiety is covering everything. But at least, we are still in step with those around us. But then around this age, mid 20s to early 30s, this feeling and hope that things will get better on their own begins to diminish. And it is at this point, such as your age, where we may finally reach out because we might realize things are indeed not getting better, and more depression sets in. So we may have had social anxiety starting from an early age, but finally we are looking for help now. And that is a first step. So, good, you are here on your first step.

If social anxiety is the issue you are facing, I suggest reading as much as you can on the main website: https://socialanxietyinstitute.org/what-is-social-anxiety. There is plenty of information you can read there, and I’m pretty sure that if you have social anxiety disorder, you will relate to most of what is written there and on all of the website.

For other anxiety disorders, you may look here: http://anxietynetwork.com/.

Depression as an issue on its own, clinical depression, is something you will want to seek help for if you believe it is not social anxiety causing you depression. Most often the depression we suffer comes from social anxiety. So when you deal with social anxiety and start to overcome this issue, the depression will also diminish and go away.

If I were you, perhaps confused and perhaps just now coming forward to try to get help, I would first check out both of the sites above. If you feel it is social anxiety, spend more of your time on the first site. Read and understand as much as you can there. This will help you make your decision if this is right for you or not. If so, I would then consider starting the audio therapy series, “Overcoming Social Anxiety: Step by Step”, by Dr. Thomas Richards. It is a structured CBT course for overcoming social anxiety, specifically.

When I was your age, I was confused and very depressed. Still I avoided this problem until I was about 30 years old. I couldn’t keep avoiding it because the problem had become so large, impacting negatively my whole life. At your age, I was still struggling, hurting, avoiding… but also so confused that I was running away instead of seeking help. I didn’t know what social anxiety was at that age, even though it’s clear that this was my problem. If this is also what is causing you so much pain, I can tell you that it does not have to be this way forever. You can work to gradually and permanently overcome social anxiety disorder. It takes time, yes, persistence. It takes your efforts to do the therapy, but it is very possible to change your life for the better.

Again, as stated above, when you do feel in a very bad place, at least reach out now to your family and friends. That is the right thing to do. Change is possible, in all things. I know that now, but I didn’t feel that at your age. If you also know this, as difficult as it might feel to you now, then you know that a life without depression and social anxiety can logically be possible. A future for you can be a good one, not the one you are feeling now. Look to that future and solutions which will help get you there.

Sincerely,
Mateo