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Re: Depression as response to reality

Posted by pegasus on March 17, 2004, at 11:50:33

In reply to Re: Depression as response to reality, posted by Tancred62 on March 17, 2004, at 11:11:06

Well, your positive slant on nihilism is interesting certainly. And yet, I have to take exception to some of the things you say about depression and medication and pessimism. I recognize that what you describe is your experience. I also think that it's not necessarily appropriate to extend that to the human condition in general.

For example, I want to tell you pieces of my story, that contradict your world view. Now, I realize that this is my story, and also not extendable to the human condition in general.

I've suffered from depression and anxiety my entire life. I've been functional (usually) within that experience, and also had major reservations about medication, and how maybe it would take away some essential part of me, which was generally pessimistic (which I also saw as being realistic). But I did eventually give medication a try, and along with psychotherapy and meditation and other efforts, it changed my life. As I began to feel less depressed and anxious, I became less pessimistic. I began to see the limitations my pessimism had constructed within my life, and I began to live outside those limitations for the first time ever. I'm now in the middle of a career change that I never dared to consider before. I'm spending my time doing things that I *love*, which I always assigned to the "missed boat" category before. My life is so much more open and free than it was before.

I guess you could consider this to be unrealistic, but it looks real to me from where I am. The changes in my outlook are really changing my life. I guess what I'm saying is that maybe there is a self fulfilling prophesy aspect to this issue. If you're pessimistic, then maybe that *is* realistic, because you'll live within the limits you see. But maybe if you're optimistic, that could be realistic too, because you won't see those limitations and might move outside of them.

Sorry if this sounds sappy and pollyanna-ish. And I don't mean to invalidate your experience. I just thought it might be useful to consider this experience in the equation as well.

- p




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