An unfiltered fire hose of flaming condemnation

Hostess

Oh, hey. Hi there! Remember last week when I wrote on my Internet Website Blog Thing about suicidal ideations? Yeah. Those were fun times. No? Not really? What, did my mom call you? MOMS. We really know how to ruin a good party.

I had someone write to tell me to stop whining, and I’m not going to complain about that criticism. Because I get it. I understand it. One second you’re in your car and suddenly a song comes on the stereo that reminds you of how much you once loved that boy with blue eyes, how you’d walk to fifth period through a specific building just so you could pass him in the hallway and see if you could catch his eye contact. And when you did, your irises pooling with black as you held his stare, the rest of your day warmed its hands near the thought of him.

And when you didn’t, when the blue light in his eyes skipped over your head into the nothing that could possibly exist above your head, the rest of your day wasn’t there. It got sucked into that nothingness. And that song at the stoplight reminds you of that void, takes you straight back to the moment you passed him and he passed you and you felt your vein bleeding out.

That’s a really indulgent moment. You’re driving a car. Liberal estimates say only about 9% of the world’s population own a car. I’ve walked through villages where women have to ride for over an hour on the back of a makeshift rickshaw if they want to see a doctor. Fuck you and your song and that extra few seconds it takes you to notice the light has turned green because you’re overcome with emotion.

A similar principle applies here. I own two cars, a large home, and a business in a free market economy. My family enjoys excellent access to healthcare. My daughter goes to school. I get paid to write about my feelings on the Internet. Am I seriously going to whine about aimlessness?

Yes, I am, and that’s where I invite anyone who agrees with the valid criticism above to sit here with me and let me have it. I will listen to you curse me. I’ll nod and offer you a tissue when things really heat up. I’ll let you talk about your friend who died or the job you lost or the meals you’ve had to skip, and then I’ll fix you dinner and invite you to stay the night.

Sometimes the only way to quantify our own suffering is to compare it to what we think is the happiness of others. It’s human. As human as reflexively wincing when hearing the chorus of a song you once played over and over in your bedroom because of two blue eyes.

So I offer up my humanness if, instead of a place to stay for the night, you need to hear that even with everything in its right place it’s okay if you still don’t know why it doesn’t feel that way.

  • mightymarce

    The thing about the “Stop whining, bc I have it WAY harder than you!” mentality, is that by that standard no one is ever allowed to whine because someone else will always have it harder than you do.

    Your feelings are valid. As are mine, and anyone else’s. Feel them, acknowledge them. Burying them does no one any good.

  • lekutz

    WORD. just, yeah, human to human WORD.

  • hugsNpuppies

    Great post. You do your best writing when you feel crap. And you’re getting gutsier, that’s good to see. You hit the nail on the head of depression with this post. I hope you feel the support and love coming your way… I have a little mantra I play in my head when I feel crap: “This too will pass, it’s only a feeling, this too will pass.” And then I cut myself some slack and wait… much love!

  • fizzlesnit

    This is well said. I was in the Peace Corps in a third world country for two and a half years, and I saw much greater suffering than I hope to ever endure. And yet… there are still days when I can’t get over just how overwhelmed or sad or purposeless I feel. Every person is valid. Your feelings are valid. It’s not about relativity. It’s about your moment in time and just how sucky that reality sometimes seems… even if it’s not so bad on paper.

    That said, I hope you’re feeling better soon. Depression can be a terrible monster. Here’s hoping you can turn yours back into some kind of Muppet.

  • thistlework

    Heather your post is stellar and you rock. I’m going to tell my Mum not to call your Mum after all.

  • elizabethsheryl

    Dude. Everyone is allowed those moments of self-indulgence! I’m not sure if you’ve read it, but there is a great passage in Eat, Pray, Love which says that even in the poorest of places, where people have no luxuries..they are still worrying if so and so likes them or gossiping about love triangles. Love makes the world go round, in all of its melodramatic glory.

  • SoBooya

    Heather, you know the trolls are going to criticize and nitpick no matter what you write, so please, stop feeling you need to apologize that your problems aren’t problematic enough. (I say this in the kindest possible way, as I think you are awesome.)

  • preppypitbull

    Just wanted to write and say that I can completely understand where you’re coming from with this entire post. My day was ruined because I ordered a stroller online and the wrong one came. My entire afternoon was spent on the phone and talking to eBay about how to rectify my stroller situation. Looking on it now, it was a ridiculous thing to get so worked up about, but that was my day and my reality at the time was that I was beside myself upset. After receiving 50% back from the company, and their offer to keep the stroller (oh, and a big glass of wine) I am feeling much better. Compared to the rest of the world, I had a hell of a good day. You can’t always blame yourself for the feelings you have, no matter how small they may seem to someone else.
    Also, there are MANY songs I have a hard time listening to on the radio, Mazzy Star being an artist that brings out many a visceral feeling/memory from 9th grade (1994). Good times.

  • Pamela504

    Oh fuck it. You owe no one an apology for being depressed. As if it’s a freaking optional state of being! And anyone who even hints otherwise, well I’ll tell them here, “Go fuck yourself.”

  • ECret

    Beautiful post. I didn’t read all the comments, so I don’t know if anyone’s referenced this, but the first thing that sprang to mind when you mentioned the people who told you to stop whining was a quote by Plato that I love:

    “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.”

    Everyone’s suffering may not be “equal”, but everyone’s pain is the same. Compassion is the name of the game!

  • mkdsmall

    I have always said “everything is relative” – absolutely others have it worse, but others have it better too – for every single one of us – there is a better and a worse.

    What I really wanted to say – is “wow you really look like your mom in that photo!”

  • Funnygirl78

    Between this post and the recent one where you described the work in therapy you have done regarding your parents divorce I can’t really write much more praise. Seriously lady. Your honesty and way with the word knocks me on my ass.

  • elsieg

    hi heather, i’ve never commented before but i’ve been meaning to write you an email for about 3 years now (in fact, it’s partially written and sitting in my drafts folder). basically, the point of it is that reading about your bout with depression and your quest for help has been such an amazing comfort to me while i try to do the same. it’s so incredible how open and honest and willing to share the downs you’ve been, and i hope that you realise how much help you’ve offered to all of your readers.

    so, in that spirit, i wanted to comment today, in the hopes that a comment is the cyber-equivalent of a hug (who says “cyber” these days? me, apparently). you’re not alone! you’re doing an incredible job! and you are adored. don’t let the haters get you down.

    also:

    a) your hair looks fantastic! At least when all else is going to sh*t, you can know that you LOOK amazing even if you don’t FEEL amazing. Sometimes having one is a start to having the other.

    b) totally agree with everyone else’s comments; pain is unique to the person experiencing it. it’s one thing to understand that there’s worse living conditions around the world and that simply by having been born in the “west”/north america/europe etc., we really are the 99%, etc etc blah blah. but we can’t help others until we’ve helped ourselves. it’s like the cliche about putting on your own oxygen mask before helping someone else to put theirs on. we can’t solve the problems that are oceans away, or even neighbourhoods away, until we feel well ourselves.

    hope that this passes/that you’re able to work through it. stay connected to the things that offer you support and strength, and disconnect from the things that drag you down.

    hugs!

  • NolaMomma

    I thought Tyrant was supposed to weed out the hate mail, what’s up???

    When I read your “whining”…..I felt relieved to know that I’m not the only one living a beautiful life and having suicidal fantasies….which I KNOW that I would never act on, but it helped me feel normal-ish.

    I was thinking about my own case of the blues last week and feeling guilty for being so fortunate, but spending energy on being sad and I guess it’s because we can be….we are not cave people fighting for survival and this is where we are. I’m not saying that there are not people struggling to survive, I know there are and I put a lot of energy into helping as many of them as I can, but I know at the same time that they aren’t sad about not getting enough “me” time or “quiet” time…things I whine about. It is what it is.

    This photo, in addition to showing off your great hair, shows the sadness in your eyes. I hope you get to a happy place soon. I always seem to get more and more sad as Christmas approaches….has to do with not having my mother anymore and a myriad of other baggage. Looking forward to the new year. 🙂

  • skull

    you said it wonderfully. i get it. here’s to hoping things start to feel right for everyone who’s suffering.

  • fishsticked

    Okay, wait. If I recall, the comments on that post were closed so when you say “I had someone write to tell me to stop whining” you actually mean that someone took the time to open their email, type something bitchy, and send it to you? I don’t think I’ll ever understand a) how people have the time to do that or b) what purpose they think it serves. Personally, if I found you to be a whiny obnoxious bitch (not the case) I wouldn’t give your blog the time of day. Because why? To tell you you’re a whiny obnoxious bitch? Pointless.

    But this post is phenomenal! Everything from the title, to the content, to the humanity, to that photo. Just incredible. You put yourself out there. Every day you share bits of what’s on your mind, what’s happening in your family, or what you have coming up. You share stories about your two beautiful children, about your husband, about your friends. You share all of that and it all seems so perfect that you just can’t have anything to complain about.

    But that’s bull shit. Only you know your reality and, as @Lally18 put it, your “reality is what [you] have to deal with.” Sure, there are tons of people out there who have it harder than you (assuming for a moment that difficulties can be placed in hierarchical order) and at the same time there are plenty of people that have it better than you. But what you have is what you have. It’s not really practical to wake up every day and think “wow, what a great day! I could be missing both my legs, but I’m not, so I’m happy!”

    I don’t have depression, Heather. I have bouts out sadness, I’ve experienced loss and hurt, but I am lucky enough to not suffer as you and so many others do. But I have other challenges in my family, other things that occupy my mind for the better part of the days and weeks, and it’s because of that that I feel as though I can relate to this. I don’t think I’ll ever get it, ever fully understand it, but I can relate in my own way and that’s all anyone can do.

    I guess for some that means to hate you. To tell you to fuck off because you have it all: two cars, two kids, two dogs, a husband, and a house. And maybe for that person, that would be “all”. Material and happy. If that’s the case, I feel for them. I don’t know you beyond your blog and twitter, but I would imagine that your “all” involves happiness with yourself and with life (I’m sorry if I’m misstating) and, for a great many of us, that is the case.

    I hope you find that happiness. You deserve it if for nothing else than for the help you’ve given to others through the stories of your struggles. You keep fighting and keep writing and we, the people who come here because we don’t hate you (because who has time to actively hate?), will keep reading.

    And I’ll close with this line my mom would recite to me growing up (I’m sure it’s some quote from somewhere and you may have heard it, but it helps me): The people who care don’t matter and the people who matter don’t care.”

  • nekjo

    Sometimes in the darkest times, it helps to know that there are others out there who are also struggling. Please keep on sharing.

  • jodieyorg

    delurking after yeaaaaarrrssss to say a-fucking-men. Mir at http://www.wouldashoulda.com called this the pity olympics and seriously, who does that help?

    So much of what is true about life and parenting is taboo to speak of. Why is it that if we are fortunate enough to have a good life that somehow also means we cannot feel pain or sadness. Good for you for debunking these myths with your candor (and humor frankly).

  • Cynsfamily

    Thank you Heather. So frequently I read your words and feel hopeful, because I am not the only one! I have struggled with depression for so many years, even when times were good. Please keep writing and doing what you are doing.
    Thank you.

  • waterbutterfly

    That last paragraph? Thank you.

  • Becki_P

    As many of the previous comments have said, thank you Heather. After years of reading your blog I wanted you to know that you have another supporter out there who thinks you are amazing.

    It truly means the world to know that you are not alone. I am enduring the worst depression of my life right now and at times have felt like I’m crazy to be feeling this way. But today I finally found the courage to ask for help and went to my first appt with a psychologist. I am going to take some time off work to sleep, try and recuperate and find a way to see the light in life again.

    I owe some of that courage to you for talking about the things in life that others won’t and for making it feel ok to ask for help. So thank you……for sharing your life, for being real and not pretending life is perfect all of the time, for being brave, for being you.

  • luckymom22

    Hi,

    It does seem like your tone changed awhile back, even before the marathon, and I worried. I wasn’t going to write anything but, since you brought it up…please make sure you are taking care of your family by taking care of yourself and be proactive about getting whatever help you need. We want you with us.

  • superkittn

    Dude. I soooo get it.

  • NoLongerEvil

    You are beautiful in every shape of the word.

  • Jawnbc

    Some people believe “it’s your blog, write what you want.” And on a hypersimplified plane that’s true. It’s also a powerful rationalization used by all sorts of eejits, fookwits and misanthropes on the interwebs for being…del…eejits, fookwits and misanthropes.

    But you’ve never come across like that to me. Everything you post gives me a sense you’re trying to open up some space for exchanges and interactions that will make this world a bit better. Almost always for someone not you too.

    I think you’re incredibly brave, especially when discussing your mood disorder and mental health in general. I disclosed mine at a job once…and the reaction means I’ll never do so willingly again.

    Yours is a good place on the internet Mrs. Armstrong. Also often highly entertaining too. 😉

  • Leobenlover

    Ya know what Heather? I love you. We don’t know each other and I may not always agree with you but there it is. And why not? Is it that difficult to love? You make me laugh and sometimes you make me cry a little (that’s just between us, I’m a cold hearted bitch, got a rep). It’s easy to say buck up when you’re feeling no pain but wait till something bad happens then they’ll be wantin’ some lovin’. Just because others may be worse off doesn’t mean your pain isn’t genuine. Stay real and f the haters. They can say what they want on their websites. Oh wait they don’t have a website cuz they’re to afraid to let it all hang out.

  • Stevana

    Reminds me of the lyrics to one of my favorite songs – the band is called Langhorne Slim:

    sit all day pissin’ away my time
    lookin’ into a crystal ball and i don’t know why
    livin’ too fast
    to live too long
    and i don’t wanna die but i don’t know yet where i belong

    i’ve had it better than some and i know that i shouldn’t complain
    though my grandfather told me once that all pain hurts the same
    your bottle is empty
    but your glass has been filled
    and i don’t wanna break your heart but i probably will

    some are born to be good, some are born to be bad
    most do the best that they could and others wish that they had
    if i could return
    to when i was a child
    i’d forget what i learned and go back to the wild

  • cnico

    Awesome post Heather… and I’m sorry you’re going through tough times.

    I have been wanting to share something with you for a couple of months… something I just learned in the past few months that could possibly be related to your postpartum depression and other bouts of depression.

    And that is that hypothyroidism (low thyroid) combined with adrenal fatigue and out of whack female hormones (turns out the endocrine system is WAY complicated and interrelated)… can mimic mental illness… including bipolar disorder and even schizophrenia.

    The NYTimes recently had a somewhat lame article about it… but at least they did an article about it.
    http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/22/health/for-some-psychiatric-troubles-may-begin-with-the-thyroid.html?_r=2&src=me&ref=general

    The lame part of the article is that they repeat the unfounded meme that there is a risk of heart disease from thyroid supplements… when in fact many studies have shown way more heart risk from hypothyroidism… Anyway, another website is http://www.stoptheythyroidmadness.com where the author lays out the truth behind doctors who no longer know how to correctly diagnose hypothyroidism… also http://www.about.thyroid.com has some excellent information and interviews with many doctors who treat the condition… the problem is mainstream med. schools do NOT teach proper diagnosis and treatment anymore… starting in the 60s when diagnosis based on a patient’s symptoms was replaced by the “more scientific” lab testing (the wrong lab tests as it turns out) … hypothyroidism is the underlying cause of fibromyalgia and chronicfatigue as well which used to be well treated by natural thyroid supplements from the 20s through the 60s. The improper diagnosis or non-diagnosis is a huge deal affecting approximately 30 million Americans.

    This website explains how excessive exercise and even extreme dieting can trigger hypothyroidism… something to maybe look into for you as well. http://www.holtormedgroup.com …. click on the issue on the left and then click the link to handouts.

    All of these websites have info on the types of test you need to have conducted to help sort it all out… but they include the thyroid hormones free T4, free T3 (active form of hormone), Reverse T3, TSH, as well as cortisol and DHEA (thru saliva tests), iodine, two thyroid antibodies TGB Ab and TPO Ab, estradiol, progesterone and pregnenolone, D3, B12, and insulin.

    I know this is long Heather… but pls look into this … turns out many doctors had told me my thryoid was functioning just fine… but they only did TSH and T4 (inactive thyroid hormone)… which is what most doctors do… and it does NOT tell the whole picture by a long shot.

    Best to you… I have suffered from SAD and depression and because of so much crap this past year my adrenal glands gave out (called adrenal exhaustion)… testing done in August revealed that and also that my thyroid was not converting T4 to T3… and my estrogen and progesterone levels were non-existent. Since I’ve been taking the compounded T3 and adrenal support (also see the fantastic website http://www.endfatigue.com for anyone who might think they have chronic fatigue)… and I am feeling SO much better… things like selenium and zinc also help the thyroid function better. I KNOW this information will help you if you have the energy to look into it. Hugs and blessings. Carol

  • cnico

    ps… I need to mention that the reason mainstream med schools do not teach proper diagnosis of hypothyroidism is that the synthetic version of T4 (the inactive thyroid hormone) is the 5th highest selling pharmaceutical in the US…. to the tune of millions and probably billions of dollars every year.

    The sad thing is, 80% of people who take T4 don’t convert it properly to the active form, T3, so they still suffer the extreme fatigue, hair loss, mental fog, depression, symptoms of mental illness etc.

    And the natural forms of T3 thyroid that worked well for decades are not patentable!

  • ShinyMinx

    I am really impressed with the way you handled that criticism. It’s easy to lash out, but much harder to sit with something and hold onto it. To tolerate the difficult. It’s a good thing though. It speaks of resilience and maturity and of gifts to give your daughters when they look to you about how to handle the difficulties in their own lives. The quiet strength and compassion that is in your words is a wonderful thing to model and to share. Well done.

    As to the rest of it… sometimes my mind walks me down pathways that spiral into graveyards and ravaged cities and broken staircases where no one else can follow. Sometimes there are days in which my truest wish is to never wake again (although happily these are the exception rather than the norm).

    One thing I’ve learned over and over as a therapist is how we are all fundamentally wired differently. Some people have a natural buoyancy while others need to work hard to inflate the life rafts of their resilience.

    A life of hardship is an awufu thing, but it does also come with its share of gifts. If you survive you walk away much hardier for the experience. Much better able to bounce through hardship. In a lot of ways through those experiences a lot of mental waste gets burned away. But when a life of relative privilege is combined with a brain that has a tendency to anxiety and downward spirals… that can be a much trickier combination. As a therapist it is much easier to work with trauma than the hopelessness that comes from something that feels broken and the guilt of having everything others want and things still not feeling right.

    Through my worst periods of depression what helped me was finding purposes outside the home. Volunteer work or actual work. Things to give a greater structure to my day, to set constraints on how long I’d be allowed to stay in the safe nest of my house. Other times I’ve dug gardens and worked to serve others who needed the assistance (I live in London which has fantastic volunteering opportunities) and I got back as much as I gave because it gave me ability to become absorbed in something that was not my own inner pain and dark. (My body is too broken for any exercise except Pilates).

    Caitlin Moran’s “How To Be a Woman” is something that I shove into the hands of most of the women I know because it is very funny and very good for the soul. Caitlin Moran has an incredible resilience and I always feel better after reading it.

    I wish you well.

  • Brooke1214

    thank you heather.

    thank you for reminding us that sometimes life sucks ass but it’s still ok. it’s even ok to say LIFE SUCKS ASS and i don’t like it right now.

    as i sit here on my couch, with my blu – light (similar to yours) and hope that it will help me with my day i think of you. i know you are doing it too. ingesting pills that the doctors promise will help, bathing in blue light that manufacturers promise will help. putting on a smile for the world and telling them “everything is GREAT!!!!!” when in reality it SUCKS ASS. but, isn’t that what we are “supposed to do”?!?!?!?!?!?!

    I wish and pray this passes quickly for all of us. we are good people, with fucked – up brains, who are doing our best. we are workers, moms, confidants, wives, we are women and we WILL DO THIS because the other option is NOT ACCEPTABLE.

    i love you all and wish you many smiles and happiness.

  • debramac

    Hey again,
    I dont’ think I have ever read every single comment like I have with this post. I personally am really in awe of the support that has welled up in an effort anonymously “lift up” instead of anonymously “tear down”. Awesome people, here, really, and that makes you Mother (effing) Awesome.

    Yesterday i joked about needing to avoid reading about your endorphin addiction because it made me want to do bad things! While I was trying to be lighthearted, the truth is that I saw this coming, and I said to others, Oh, no Heather is gonna crash and I can’t watch.

    It seemed to be about my concern for you when I was reading it, but more nowadays when I want to warn someone else of impending doom, I need to just shut up and turn that warning around and apply that warning to myself. Which I did. Now, that didn’t make it any easier to see you crash, Heather, but it did reinforce something I’ve struggled with myself, which is the feeling of “beware the highs” because they set the bar for the “low” when one seems to be a tender glass vase about to be dashed from that very high to the very low where one lays broken going, WTF. How could that high have been wrong? It was righteous! It felt like crack (rather, the “idea” of crack) but IT WASN’T CRACK!! And yet, here I am broken again, for no good reason.

    I’ve struggled with depression on and off my whole life and I’m not someone that can take medication for it as usually within a short period of time the symptoms are so much more exaggerated that it isn’t worth it. After 5 different kinds, I’ve stopped trying thinking I’m not supposed to go that route. So I have to keep that roof lifted myself, which doesn’t seem fair, says my brain which would love for a pill to solve everything, or even something! So it’s like a second full time job that I don’t get paid for, but if I don’t do it, I pay in other ways. Haven’t perfected, certainly, and sometimes when I’m counting things that just aren’t fair, I think when all I really want is to be happy, how unfair is it that I have to avoid the highest of highs (and overachievement with endorphins would qualify for me) in order not achieve the lowest of lows. Seems wrong. But I guess if all was easy, I wouldn’t be here in this lifetime trying to prefect some damn thing, right?

    So, predicting your crash was more “projection” than “prophetic” on my part, and I thank you for helping me see that. I like that saying that we teach what we most need to learn and you are a great teacher in so many ways. And you also illustrate that we really are all one. A concept I have had trouble with applying it to most of mankind. Sometimes when we feel the most alone, if we allow it, we see really we are all just the same and we are definitely not alone. You make me feel not alone.

  • ThePeanut

    We’re thinking of you and hope that things in your world become just a bit brighter today. Baby steps. And yeah, fuck the haters.

    Lots of love.

  • mamalang

    I don’t understand why we are no longer to complain and commiserate a little when life is tough. It irks the shit out of me that I can’t simply say that my husband is driving me batty and I want to push him off a cliff without someone telling me how lucky I am to have somebody, and a job, and a house…yada yada. Guess what, I know I’m lucky, but I also know I work hard for most of those things. 1st world problems are still problems.

    So go ahead and share about your aimlessness. I’ll tell you that mine will never lead me to run a marathon, but I understand it anyway:)

  • dianemaggipintovoiceover

    since those ideations of last week, i’ve thought about you many times, hoping you are doing alright and managing each moment. thanks for expounding. love your hair.

  • amyd

    Well… here is the thing. I have never been a fan of invalidating the feelings/suffering of one person simply because they “have it better” than another person. Using this logic, you could invalidate the suffering of homeless and poor and hungry and abused in the US because people in other countries have it so much worse.

    It’s just not right. Pain, discouragement, heartbreak, depression, suffering – they are personal. They are yours, they are valid, and you have the right to do with them as you wish.

  • Lizzy

    Good grief. I’m stunned people actually take time to write you only to complain about something you wrote. On YOUR blog. I don’t know weather to throw in a WTF or an LOL. Both seem appropriate.
    You keep on, keeping on, Heather. Your rational readers appreciate you.

  • jenspends

    I can relate. I don’t feel that my depression is very severe, but I’ve been struggling for a while now, and nobody fricking cares. When I had my first anxiety attack in years a few months ago, my dad told me I needed to grow up. After I seriously injured my arm in a fall in October, nobody except my husband wanted to help. Every time I see her, my sister tries to talk me out of seeing the orthopedist and getting the physical therapy I need. Seems if you’re pretty enough or popular enough or whatever you can get away with whining about every little thing and people will fall over themselves to comfort you, but if you generally try to be self-sufficient, strong and private, you’re SOL when you DO have a problem and ask for a little support.

    I can totally relate to the blue-eyed boy crush thing, too. Mine is like a ghost haunting me lately, and what I would give to feel that way again. I guess it’s a longing for simpler, happier times when everything seemed possible and I didn’t have mundane responsibilities. I don’t know if I loved him, or loved how he made me feel…but I can’t let it go.

    Blah.

  • Shoeladee

    LOVE this post….love you Heather…. in a totally non-sexual way of course. LOL! I have an awesome life but so understand how overwhelming life can be sometimes. Besides, everyone needs a whiny, pity party every now and again!! Sing on sistah!!

  • Erin Human

    You don’t have to deserve to be sad; you’re a human being. Not so sure about the people who criticize you for having depression.

  • PrettyGirlMyers

    You know, there is this attitude out there that no matter what your problems are there is always someone who has it worse. And while that may be true, it doesn’t change how you feel at any given moment. It doesn’t mean you’re not allowed to have a bad day and then bitch about it. I remember a few years ago I was going through a bad spell, and I was complaining to my dad. He mentioned that I shouldn’t be so blue, because his dentist had a daughter who was all sick and messed up, and I should be thankful that I wasn’t in her shoes. So I pretty much told him that I didn’t give a crap about his dentists daughter, I only cared about myself. In hindsight it may have been a crappy thing to say, but when you’re sad about something the last thing you want/need is for someone to point out people that are worse off than you.

  • slappyintheface

    My depression lifted (along with my perception that there was something “wrong” with me) after I stopped striving to be happy all the damn time. Our “microwave society” has us striving for happiness at all costs, when what we should be working towards is a sense of being content. No more … no less. Content.

  • poptart66

    What I love about Dooce.com and Heather Armstrong:
    Honesty, purity, emotion, feelings, truth, being so open, sharing, caring, cursing, humor, reality, human, etc…
    I love this blog. And it still amazes me that people do not understand what this site is about, or what blogging is about and if you don’t like it, stop reading it. Sometimes I walk around with a little grey cloud hovering above me and I know I’m not alone, that it will pass, that there are people out there who understand and it makes it better for me.

    Stay real and thank you for sharing!
    Poptart.

  • gumbafive

    Thank you.

  • gumbafive

    Thank you.

  • gumbafive

    Thank you.

  • DoubleDs

    Thank you.

    Reassuring to know I am not the only one who has those feelings… why can’t I feel happy when everything is exactly as it should be?

    Fuck depression.

  • lobsterandi

    I, too, own two cars. I actually have everything I need. My life is good.

    And I’m sad too.

    I sit in front of that damned blue/white light when the winter sun doesn’t come out, and I laugh to myself. “How is this stupid light going to cure me when there’s really nothing wrong in my life?”

    To cling to a little light like that makes me feel silly and frail, but I do it because I don’t want to be sad.

  • katliz

    I’m struggling right now. Really struggling. Every day is a fight to get out of bed, to open an email at the office, to do just about any tedious task that should have absolutely no anxiety associated with it.

    Meds aren’t helping, therapy isn’t helping and I can’t get into see my psychiatrist for another two weeks until after the holidays. In the meantime, I’m hanging by a very frayed thread, wondering how I can get through the dinner I’m hosting this weekend or the very important deadlines that are coming up all at once at work.

    I’ve lived in a third-world country and have seen people struggling to feed their families on a daily basis. I know that in the grand scheme of things I have it pretty damn good. That doesn’t change the fact that this godforsaken illness that has been passed down generations in my family, one that has claimed lives and marriages before me, doesn’t grip every fiber of my being with so much strength I feel as though I’ll suffocate.

    Holy hell, I don’t get the entitlement behind people who are so easily judgmental of mental illness. The all encompassing guilt that comes with it is enough, thanks. If I have to see my husband’s eyes well up with tears one more time because he can’t help me when all he wants to do in the world is help me…

    These two posts could not have been better timed. I’ve needed them. Thank you, and I want you to be well, Heather.

  • alevai

    Heather, I think you’re cool and beautiful and your humanity is perfectly awesome.

Heather B. Armstrong

Hi. I’m Heather B. Armstrong, and this used to be called mommy blogging. But then they started calling it Influencer Marketing: hashtag ad, hashtag sponsored, hashtag you know you want me to slap your product on my kid and exploit her for millions and millions of dollars. That’s how this shit works. Now? Well… sit back, buckle up, and enjoy the ride.

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