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Why is depression so painful?

John Preston, PsyD
Psychology
Depression is painful because it causes you to believe your worst fears about yourself and your world. When you’re depressed, every interaction with another person can trigger intense self-doubt, and every minor drawback can seem like an insurmountable obstacle. You may find yourself thinking critical thoughts about yourself, assuming the worst about problematic situations and other peoples’ intentions, and making generalizations about the way things are for you, such as “I’ll always have crappy jobs” or “I’m never going to find anyone to create a meaningful relationship with.” When you habitually think this way, it can feel nearly impossible to see your way out of depression; after all, if your own brain is telling you that you’re unlovable, stupid or incompetent, how can you expect to be anything but depressed?
Depression 101: A Practical Guide to Treatments, Self-Help Strategies, and Preventing Relapse

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Depression 101: A Practical Guide to Treatments, Self-Help Strategies, and Preventing Relapse

When you have depression, it can feel like there's no way out. To begin changing the way you feel, you'll need an arsenal of proven techniques for lifting your mood and preventing relapse. The...

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.