My family has a long history of untreated depression. It is very likely that many of my family members have considered suicide without ever admitting it to anyone – and I was no exception. It took a great deal of vulnerability for me to finally own up to my depression and seek treatment. Looking back now, I am so grateful that I did. I genuinely hope that whomever reading this will soon be able to take that step as well.
I have suffered from bouts of debilitating depression since I was a child. Despite having a loving family, succeeding in school, and being blessed with an otherwise normal life, I struggled to maintain the appearance of a happy child. By the time I graduated, I had learned to fake happiness very efficiently – unfortunately, this only worsened my anxiety and offered me the layered on burden of “imposter syndrome”.
Sometimes, “Fake it Til’ You Make It”, Doesn’t Work – Especially with Depression & Anxiety
Depression can happen to anyone and is immeasurably complex. Head injuries, biological chemical imbalances, environmental factors, diet, light exposure, alcoholism & addiction, and genetics can all influence your likelihood of dealing with depression in your lifetime.
The problem with this broad range of causes is that sometimes, you cannot “fake” your way to happiness. The brain is infinitely complex and oftentimes people dealing with chronic depression suffer from a chemical imbalance that needs to be medically treated.
Don’t get me wrong, You should absolutely take moments throughout the day to seek reasons to be happy. You should absolutely take time to appreciate what you have.
What you should NOT assume is that positivity is the only action you need to take to find balance with an illness. Sometimes, we need supplemental support to realign our minds and our biology with our goals.
In fact, faking happiness may be hurting more than harming you. The added stress of trying to conceal your depression is most likely adding to it. Hiding your depression can amplify symptoms such as:
- imposture syndrome
- dissociative disorders
- addictive personalities
Feeling ashamed or afraid of your own thoughts is one of the primary reasons that severe depression often goes untreated. But treatment doesn’t have to take the form of a stuffy therapy session or testing out new anti-depression drugs. There are alternative and/or complementary medicines that can help you discover balance through your own body’s natural ability to heal itself.
Acupuncture & Traditional Chinese Medicine as a Treatment for Suicidal Thoughts & Depression
Traditional Chinese Medicine has been here for ages. I’m talking AGES – as in, more than 3,000 years. Acupuncture is widely accepted as an effective treatment for a wide range of disorders with minimal to no side effects. But just like any other treatment plan, you have to commit to a investment into your health in order to ensure results.
It’s not a typical therapy session. But it IS a self-care session. It IS a way to get to the root of your biological imbalances. It IS a good complement to other treatment and, acupuncture IS regarded as an effective treatment for depression.
I sought out acupuncture as a way of having a non-committal solution to my depression. I didn’t have to profess any of the thoughts that were haunting my mind. I didn’t have to feel the guilt of feeling like I revealed too much. I didn’t have to explain why I was suddenly going to therapy.
After a few sessions, I realized that I should seek out therapy and suddenly, I didn’t feel the anxiety I once did around it. I didn’t feel the shame or fear, or need to suppress it with alcohol that I once had. It helped give me the support and the balance that I needed to continue on the path to self improvement. It helped me feel like me again. It saved me and I am forever grateful. I hope that you will try it too. I hope that you will commit to it. Give it 6 dedicated weeks and see how you feel. It could be the best decision of your life.