I can't remember the last time i was truly happy- will i ever be happy again?

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Anonymous #1
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I can't remember the last time i was truly happy... well maybe i can - it was around 12 or 13 i think. Before that i used to be so care free, had loads of friends, not care what others think, be myself... the last couple years have been hard for me. I struggle with depression and anxiety, especially social anxiety. Im practically mute in public. I lost all my friends over the years (partly because of my depression) so now im just really lonely. I have no one. When i say no one i mean literally no one- i dont have a single friend, never been in a relationship at age 20, don't get on with my parents...

Is this just part of adulthood? is this just normal for adults to feel this way? Cause sometimes i do wonder if its just me. I know all adults have stress and worry about things but i dont think im the average adult. I have never been to a party, don't have any friends, never had a boyfriend, never experienced many of the 'teenage' things, and so sometimes i do wonder if its just me who feels like this- depressed about life. Also most people seem to have at least one friend or parents they get on with, or a partner. I have none of that. Is this just a normal part of adulthood- to wish you were a carefree kid again...?

Sometimes i wonder if ill ever be that happy again? I crave that so much... will i ever get to a point where i am genuinely happy again? How does one go about getting there??
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2003a39
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My life used to be better too... You can't be happy or achieve happiness, you can only experience it. I'm 17 and I feel like I'm living the life of an adult, except that I still live with my parents and I don't pay bills or anything.
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Anonymous #2
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i felt as though i was at breaking point until i met my boyfriend. i never thought one person could turn my life around like that.

just a simple anecdote but i truly believe things will get better for you
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Qxi.xli
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things will get better, trust me on that one.
Just have faith and work hard.
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Pathway
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I suppose now you've acutely outlined your difficulties, it's worth trying to figure out where you want to go from here.

What are you currently doing that is supportive of your mental health? Do you journal? Meditate? Breathing exercises? What's your diet like? Are you keeping hydrated? What about your sleep? If these things are all being done and there's no improvement, then it's worth making an appointment with your GP. Add new things in gradually. Might be worth seeing your GP sooner rather than later too though, depending on how bad you're feeling.

Try to focus less on what you haven't done and shift your focus on to what you want to do and how to get there. You can't change the past, but you can influence the future. Things change. Nothing stays the same forever, good or bad.
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daisiejane
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don't think i will be of much help but just wanted to say it really isn't just you! i'm almost 20 and i feel like i'd do anything to go back to being 17 as it is the last time i remember being happy.

i think it's important to remember you will feel this a lot more due to lockdown and not being able to experience a lot of the things that previously made you happy, even if that was just simple things like frequent interactions or going out etc. having anxiety at a time like this makes you feel super alone and i think people tend to exacerbate their own problem by putting the blame on yourself for how you feel. please take into account it's likely you aren't really in a position where it'd be easy to make friends due to lockdown, these opportunities will come to you again in the future, it isn't your fault that you feel lonely right now. it won't be so difficult forever, it is a lot easier to meet people when you find yourself in situations like work, uni, etc, none of which you can really do right now. hope this was of some use as i feel exactly the same as you!
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nooneeee
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I'll be honest with you- it's not really normal to feel this way.
But the good thing is, it is okay- forgive yourself for all the years you lost due to your depression and anxiety. Remind yourself that it was not you at fault, you were struggling, you were not to blame for how difficult the last couple of years were for you.
Instead, marvel at how you managed to get through all of your struggles- and while you may feel you've lost so much through all that struggling, you can definitely build things back up again. This is not disputable, it is fact!
It won't happen instantly but over time you definitely will feel genuinely happy again if you wish to!
First thing you need to do is work on your self-perception. Once you start treating yourself how you wish to be treated, how you deserve to be treated, your mindset will slowly shift to be more positive. It isn't easy, and what I'm saying isn't to burn yourself out trying to fake positivity. It's all about small steps- first learn to be mindful of your thoughts, catch yourself out whenever you find yourself believing you'll never be happy ever again, and call yourself out! You don't have to 'lie' and say you will be happy again, simply state the truth- that thought was a negative one, and I no longer have any need for negative thoughts.
Some people like to call that voice in their head after something/someone they hate, eg Elon Musk- whenever you think 'will I ever be happy?' try to be aware of what your subconscious mind (or Elon Musk) just said, and retort back: 'shut the **** up, Elon Musk!'

It will be hard at the start, and there will be many times when you'll forget or won't notice a negative series of thoughts and feelings bcos you're so warped up with the very feeling. On those days, its ok! Forgive yourself! It can't be helped. But keep trying whenever you remember. Eventually you'll improve, and start reprogramming your mind.
I've begun doing this since this time last year. I'm trying to give more love to myself, and 'save' myself instead of waiting for someone to come save me like in movies, where a girl is insecure and she miraculously meets the love of her life or an amazing best friend who lifts her up. That's the best gift you could give yourself! Being your own saviour in your own movie! I relate to your experiences although not in directly similar ways, but enough to understand.

There is honestly nothing wrong with not having a bf at 20- in reality not much men during school are worthy of dating.
This is getting long, but I was this time last year insecure about how I've never dated, and almost got into a relationship with a guy who I now realise was not special in any way and not worth sacrificing my free time, energy, effort, money and love on- all because I was worried that I was wasting my teen years not dating once. Now I realise how I dodged a bullet- and the bliss in being single. I no longer plan on dating unless someone comes along who I feel being in a relationship with would really enrich my life. Because I learnt how to be at peace with myself!! I'm still learning, but yea, not to be fake spiritual but at the end of the day, YOU are single-handedly the one best person fit for the job in all things self-improvement. No one knows you better than yourself, no one can help you and give better advice to you than yourself once you learn to appreciate who you are, no one can be a better friend to you than yourself! (Not to say you won't find amazing friends after regaining confidence! You will!!).
You are a gift to yourself, no matter how much your brain is trying to convince you that is not true right now!
There is so much power in indulging in the possibility that: what if your brain is lying to you? What if your depression and anxiety is lying to you?
No matter how small that possibility might be, the more you notice it, the less it can be ignored.
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by Pathway)
I suppose now you've acutely outlined your difficulties, it's worth trying to figure out where you want to go from here.

What are you currently doing that is supportive of your mental health? Do you journal? Meditate? Breathing exercises? What's your diet like? Are you keeping hydrated? What about your sleep? If these things are all being done and there's no improvement, then it's worth making an appointment with your GP. Add new things in gradually. Might be worth seeing your GP sooner rather than later too though, depending on how bad you're feeling.

Try to focus less on what you haven't done and shift your focus on to what you want to do and how to get there. You can't change the past, but you can influence the future. Things change. Nothing stays the same forever, good or bad.
I have a therapist i see every other week, other than that not much. My diet is rubbish, im have gained quite a lot of weight especially during covid, my sleep pattern is awful, i think i must go to bed at like 4am... i know its really bad habits but sometimes it hard to break it. I was doing really well after the last lockdown i decided to turn my life around and lost about 20lbs, slept well, ate well, etc... but then we went into lockdown again and its all gone downhill, gained all the weight back. IDK if its just covid and lockdown making me miserable but i just have no motivation to do anything. Im stuck at home all day by myself and that gives me a lot of chance to think- so i think about my life and all the things that have gone wrong...
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Anonymous #1
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(Original post by daisiejane)
don't think i will be of much help but just wanted to say it really isn't just you! i'm almost 20 and i feel like i'd do anything to go back to being 17 as it is the last time i remember being happy.

i think it's important to remember you will feel this a lot more due to lockdown and not being able to experience a lot of the things that previously made you happy, even if that was just simple things like frequent interactions or going out etc. having anxiety at a time like this makes you feel super alone and i think people tend to exacerbate their own problem by putting the blame on yourself for how you feel. please take into account it's likely you aren't really in a position where it'd be easy to make friends due to lockdown, these opportunities will come to you again in the future, it isn't your fault that you feel lonely right now. it won't be so difficult forever, it is a lot easier to meet people when you find yourself in situations like work, uni, etc, none of which you can really do right now. hope this was of some use as i feel exactly the same as you!
I guess i also felt this way before covid is the thing, however covid has made it 10x worse. Prior to covid i never had any friends and had severe social anxiety. However prior to covid i was kept busy with work and uni etc so i guess i kept ticking along and not expecting anything to change. Prior to covid i honestly just expected and wanted to spend the rest of my life alone- i thought that would make me happy as i enjoy being alone as sad as that sounds but being alone is the only time i feel truly relaxed. Whenever im around people i just feel anxious even around close family ESPECIALLY my parents (who for various reasons i really dont get on with). However i guess covid has made me stop and give me a chance to think and realise i dont want that- i want friends, a partner, a family one day! When covid is over and i see everyone seeing their friends again and posting it on social media it makes me kind of depressed as it makes me realise i dont have anyone to look forward to seeing when its all over... i think the biggest thing holding me back is my social anxiety and in order to make friends and get close to people i have to overcome that, i just dont know how to
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Pathway
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(Original post by Anonymous)
I have a therapist i see every other week, other than that not much. My diet is rubbish, im have gained quite a lot of weight especially during covid, my sleep pattern is awful, i think i must go to bed at like 4am... i know its really bad habits but sometimes it hard to break it. I was doing really well after the last lockdown i decided to turn my life around and lost about 20lbs, slept well, ate well, etc... but then we went into lockdown again and its all gone downhill, gained all the weight back. IDK if its just covid and lockdown making me miserable but i just have no motivation to do anything. Im stuck at home all day by myself and that gives me a lot of chance to think- so i think about my life and all the things that have gone wrong...
What's the easiest for you to change out of those things? Start with that. Enlist the help of your therapist to help you make changes.

I understand the thought process, but it's unhelpful, it's why I've suggested journalling, and to do it consistently every day. It'll help you get your thoughts out of your head on to paper. You might even think of new ways on how to think about things. This takes time, but it requires a lot of consistent effort. It's not impossible to change things around but you need to do this in a holistic way.
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