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Topic: Lashing out and losing friends

5 posts, 0 answered
  1. bjames
    bjames avatar
    14 posts
    10 January 2020

    Hi all,

    I am guessing this topic might resonate. I've gone through a deep depression which was filled with both anxiety and depression and have come out the other side where I am in a very good place. However, I am still coming to grips with other factors which contribute and keep me isolated from the outside world. The problem is, while I deal with these issues, I look back at where I was compared to today, and I am happy. The problem is, friends, family etc don't understand, nor do they when I try to explain it to them. I totally get that they want the best for me and they EXPECT the old me to return to "normal" life and be the person I was before.

    The problem is that the more they push and the more they show no understanding, the harder I push back. I know my isolation doesn't help because I tend to brood and let my anger get the best of me. It becomes infuriating that others think they know better than I do and I tend to lash out when people refuse to take my word on why I am living like I am doing.

    It is a great source of frustration for me and it gets to a point where I don't need this in my life. It's also caused friendships to end and family members to disassociate with me because I lash out. The really frustrating part is that while they think I am wasting my life away, I look at the progress I have made from basically not being able to get out of bed for two years and not wanting to face the day, to not being able to sleep some nights because I have something I look forward to the next day. In other words, I have created a life in my own little world or bubble that has me happy and content to a certain degree. It's not ideal and it looks far from ideal to outsiders. I try to explain that it is a process for me, but all they see is that I have wasted years of my life and I am not getting the help THEY think i should get.

    No matter what I say, they never understand. They think there is a magic wand that if I do what they want, I will return to the person I was. And as I said, it has caused a lot of relationships to end, which is the sad part. My problem is my anger because I take the attitude that you are either with more or against me. I'm sick of trying to explain myself.

    1 person found this helpful
  2. Quercus
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    Quercus avatar
    3502 posts
    11 January 2020 in reply to bjames

    Hi BJames,

    Thank you a thousand times for raising this topic and writing so openly. Reading your words felt like having my own feelings and current difficulties described.

    I don't feel like the same person anymore. Most days I feel like who I am now is never good enough for the people I love. In an argument last year I lashed out and told my husband I feel like he loves another woman who I'm constantly expected and always fail to live up to. He loves who he married. I can't be like that anymore or I'll end up suicidal again. My goodness it hurts huh.

    Being angry. Isolating yourself. Yep this is so familiar. Lashing out and pushing people away is my way of protecting myself. Rejecting people before they reject me sort of thing. Do you feel like that too at times?

    Have you found anything that has helped getting people to even try to understand?

    I've started getting very blunt with people and just blurting out how I feel and what they can expect from me and what I cannot do. I figure if they really care they'll stick around if I'm honest with them.

    It's pretty scary though making myself vulnerable and sometimes people get angry or upset when I'm blunt. You mentioned feeling like people are with or against you and this hit home too. I've been trying to think of people as just not understanding rather than against me. Might not make sense but it helps me somehow. I am brutally honest and if they cannot or will not even try to understand then at least I know I've tried whatever I could.

    Is there anyone you care about who doesn't pressure you to change?

    Sorry I'm waffling. Just wanted to say thank you for talking about this. I really hope you can find people who accept you as you are offline too. It helps me to write here and know others understand but having offline support helps too.


  3. therising
    Valued Contributor
    • A special award for members who go above and beyond to support others here on the forums
    therising avatar
    1407 posts
    11 January 2020 in reply to bjames

    Hi bjames

    Coming out of depression is a seriously tough journey because much of the time we're raising our self out of it. Sure, there might be a few key people around who have pointed us in the right direction but ultimately it is us who does the hard yards in rising. It can feel pretty lonely, for a number of reasons, as we continue to climb up through and beyond depression.

    • Some folk don't understand the depths of where we've been. They don't understand the nature of that dark place
    • They don't understand the painstaking effort it's taken to get to the point we're at
    • They don't understand what progress is like for us. To them, it may not look like progress because they've never had to make the climb

    List goes on.

    I remember feeling so incredibly excited when I first came out of my depression about 14 years ago. I'd been in it for 15 years of my life. When I came out of it, I gradually came to face a mountain of disappointment. The mountain in some ways represented the people I faced. Why was everyone so uncomfortable with this new me? They should have been happy for me. I felt seriously ripped off. Must admit I was pretty high at the time and needed some serious grounding.

    Grounded is a good place to be after coming out of depression. It allows time to contemplate self and life. Personally, I contemplate everyday. I meditate on constructing a template for who I want to be as I gradually continue to climb to greater heights. I assess the challenges I need to accept in order to climb and the challenges I don't need (the ones that serve no obvious purpose). I deal out a few challenges too. As a wife and a working mum of 2 teenagers, on top of helping out my 2 aging parents, there are days where I feel a little drained. The challenge I put out is 'Raise me, energise me, serve me in some way'. Some are good at meeting this challenge (like my kids and mum) and some are not so good. If we're paying attention bj we come to know who's who as we're learning to become more conscious through the rising process. Yes, you're still rising and will continue to do so. I love it, although there are some challenges that tempt me to anger and make me want to scream. They're the seriously tough ones.

    As you contemplate, what is it that feeds your soul? What do you want to know most about regarding self and life? Eg. Are you interested in the workings of the human brain and/or the nature of energy (quantum physics, metaphysics, Prana, Chi etc)? Something else?


    1 person found this helpful
  4. bjames
    bjames avatar
    14 posts
    11 January 2020 in reply to Quercus

    Hi Nat,

    Your reply is greatly appreciated and it is comforting to hear that others can appreciate what I am experiencing.

    I'm losing and have lost some of my closest friends over this. The anger and lashing out hasn't helped and the brooding over feeling slighted or wronged has been a real weakness of mine. After many years, I've come to realise that my anger is unhealthy with the catalyst being losing my closest friend. I've finally taken the first steps of asking for help with my anger by contacting a psychologist to deal with the pent up anger I've also returned to these forums because it is cathartic for me to "ramble on" and hope that I am 1. Not alone and 2. Find how others cope or not cope with it.

    You are 100% correct that it is difficult being vulnerable and being male, it is not something I am accustomed to. I think that is probably part of the problem in that over the years, I've failed to show that vulnerability and the experiences of emotions that I have gone through. While I think I have gone through life changing experiences and had to endure a long road to get to where I am, others think I've just been wasting my life away, not helping myself and not getting help.

    I have tried to just dismiss people as not understanding and I do try to give them the benefit of the doubt. But, my greatest annoyance is the dismissive attitude and not being able to appreciate the time it takes to get to certain points. As I said, I've gone from not being able to get out of bed for two years to where I am right now replying to you at 5.30 in the morning on a Saturday because I am up ready to face the day. It has taken many years to get here. I call it progress but friends and family see it as a waste of my life and that isolating myself means I am missing out on what they think I should be doing.

    I too am like you, I am blunt, but probably too blunt to a point where people get offended and this doesn't help my relationships. In saying that, I do have two good female friends that I have become close to through this experience. Both I communicate via phone or the internet, one I met only and the other a person is was more of an acquaintance before I got depression but we have become good friends now, even though I don't see her. They are my solace, my default position when I need support or to vent because they don't judge, they listen and understand, especially one because she has similar issues to me.

    1 person found this helpful
  5. bjames
    bjames avatar
    14 posts
    11 January 2020 in reply to therising


    Thank you so much for replying. It is good to hear that I am not alone in this fight.

    One point you made is 100% correct in that this is that ultimately this is my fight. While others may have ideas which more than often anger me, this is MY life and MY fight and I will get back to "normal" when I am ready, not when the EXPECT me to be ready. This is probably one of the most frustrating parts for me. I have friends continually telling me "I want you to do ....... with me" and "you have missed out on doing .... with me" and "I want you to see my kids grow up" or "I want you to get back to normal". I TOTALLY get that they just want the best for me and want the old me but selfishly this is not about what "they want", it's about what I WANT. And that is what people just can't come to grips with.

    I'm sorry to hear that you have fought so hard for so long and then succeeded, only to have people not being satisfied with who you are. It must be so uncomfortable for you having to deal with this. I do get something similar from my parents who see me happy, but that is not good enough for them. They want the old me, the sociable, active me who had very close relationships with other family members and played a large part in their lives. Unfortunately, I am not that person now and I think it will take time to get there. Not only have I isolated myself, I've pretty much cut off a lot of communication as well and maybe that is ultra private side of me who doesn't want to be vulnerable or so that others don't start expecting things of me.

    You do seem to have a lot on your plate and it must take some work to get through each day. I probably do need to heed some of your advice and focus more on my development and take more time to contemplate. Days just tend to pass for me and then they quickly turn into months and years and tend to just hope that I am in a better place in another year without really working on myself too much. I think talking to a psych about my anger and how I can control it is a step in that direction and i think I need to do more on a daily basis to help me grow. There are areas that you pointed out that I am interested in, especially psychology. There are people I've casually listened to over the years but it was more from a political or societal point of view and not on a personal level. I think i will heed your advice and focus on the personal development aspect or the "feeding of the soul"

    Thank you so much!


    1 person found this helpful

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