Do you feel all alone and isolated with your thoughts? Do you feel completely isolated from the whole world, like there is no one else who will ever really get you? Do you feel like you just want to shake this dark and heavy weight off you once and for all? Do you think: "Why can't I just be happy like everyone else?"
Moreover, do you feel like no one really cares about even understanding you? Or worse, maybe no one can understand you. That they are all too busy with their own lives to bother. Does anyone really know how sad and in the depths of despair you are? Do you hide your sadness from people, worrying they might not help you or care? Does your life seem pointless, flat, lifeless or even just boring, to the point you ask: "Is this all there is?" Is your day just about waking up and then feeling like there is no point, having breakfast, doing your work and then coming home to a lonely feeling, watching TV and then going to bed exhausted?
Everyone feels lonely or sad sometimes but depression is different. When someone with depression feels sad, their sadness is not just a temporary state—it can last for days, weeks, months or even years. Second, the sadness of depression is not in response to one particular event—it is just pervasive and unrelenting. Lastly, although long-lasting feelings of sadness are one symptom of depression, not everyone experiences them.
Note: Depression is one of the most common issues I see in my practice. Even people who do not know they are experiencing some form of depression, are often surprised when I suggest they may be struggling with it. Depression is increasingly common—not just within the therapeutic world but in the regular world. People just don't know what they are feeling and assume that it might just go away one day or that maybe "they are just having a bad day" (—again.)
Take heart: Depression is a struggle to beat, but it can be beaten.
Online psychotherapy can be extremely effective in helping clients from the symptoms of depression. It can build on one's natural, easy-going and playful nature to really start experiencing the joys of life again. In this ever technologically-focused and emotionally distant world, where people are trying hard to pretend to be happy, normal life is hard. Most people in our society are quietly and secretly suffering through there own demons so we feel like we must be somehow odd and broken. Our society and families have told us that we should be able to fix things on our own. However, this is just not true—sometimes the programming of society and our families has just been so strong, we cannot see beyond it. So, there is absolutely nothing wrong in seeking help from a professional to help you feel happier again.
Who can help with depression?
Many people suffering from depression have some ideas of where to turn to find help. For example, first you may turn to your friends and family, but what you have to say to them seems baffling and they may not really no what to say beyond: "Just be happy!" or "I take this drug when I'm feeling sad. Do you want one?" or "Why don't we just have a drink and watch some TV. That will get your mind off that stuff!" By the time you realize that your friends and family may not be the best people to turn to, immersed in their own anxiety about life and instead of what you are saying, you might come to the conclusion that it's time to see a professional.
It is common for people to feel lost when finding the right therapist, especially online were the choices can seem overwhelming. You are wanting to make sure you find someone you can trust, someone you can really open up too, but not sure where to start. A good first step is, making sure the therapist is licensed to practice therapy and holds a professional, university degree in counselling. A second step is to make sure that you feel comfortable with your therapist: if you don't feel at least somewhat comfortable, you'll never get better. It is critically important to trust your therapist—at least enough so that you can start working on your depression together.
"But no one has understood me so far, what makes a therapist think they can?"
That is where the training of the therapist is invaluable. Unlike a family or a friend who has an investment in you being happy—and quickly—a therapist has the training to work with you in an unhurried and compassionate way. A good therapist takes their time with you, makes sure you feel completely heard, double checks what you say to make sure they have heard everything precisely, and maintains a space where you can finally be truly heard. Some of my clients often surprise themselves: they wonder, "Now where did that thought come from? I didn't know I was even thinking that!"
"Why should I pay to talk to someone? Shouldn't I be able to talk to my friends and family about this?"
That's a great point. Yes, it would be great if you could talk to your friends and family but typically most people with depression cannot. This is important to realize: depression is as much a social problem as it is an individual one. This is and important to consider as we work together: how much of my depression is from myself and my behaviours and how much is being created by my environment? By examining depression in this social context, clients will often feel great relief and say, "You mean, it's not just my issue?"
Shouldn’t I just stop whining and complaining and just deal with it? Doesn’t everyone get sad now and then?
Yes, that’s true: everyone does get sad now and then. However, depression is different—it is pervasive and lasts a long time. Depression includes many symptoms beyond sadness, including: low energy, feeling tired, moving through “sludge” or “mud;” having no interest or pleasure; an emptiness or a numbness; sleep difficulties (such as not being able to fall or stay asleep or middle-of-the-night wakefulness; changes in appetite (either not being hungry or out-of-control eating); concentration issues (like being in a fog or not being able to make decisions); irritability and anger with many topics and stimuli (which is a marked changed from your usual state); crying a lot (often for no apparent reason); increased aches and pains; memory issues such as forgetting important dates and to-dos; a sense of hopelessness, guilt, worthlessness, and thoughts of suicide; and finally, people with depression often experience a withdrawal from close relations, family, friends and work.
What's unique about me and my work with depression?
First off, I have suffered from depression too. This is important to note because some therapists "know" about depression but only second-hand. They really don't get the intricacies of this psychological issue and so they can't follow clients along their path. For me, I can see where clients are getting stuck and what sort of issues are coming up for them along the way. As well, I understand experientially how low the low can be and a lot of therapists just do not have this body/felt knowledge to be able to sense what is going on with their clients.
Secondly, I use several proven psychotherapeutic modalities to help specifically with depression.
What should I do next to defeat my depression?
There is no need to struggle alone, hoping that things do not get worse. Help is available here and can alleviate symptoms relatively quickly, even if full recovery takes a bit of time, the beginnings of relief are not far away. When we begin talking about depression, we learn that we are not alone and that help is out there.
So click below to schedule a session immediately or contact me first. Whatever, the case we can get this dead weight off your back and get you back to feeling happier!