Having everything to be happy: family, friends, work ... Yet, feeling a constant sadness, an apathy that doesn't make any sense. Why do we get depressed if there are no significant deficiencies in our life?
Written and verified by the psychologist GetPersonalGrowth.
Last update: December 14, 2021
A good job, financial security, loved ones, a wonderful family and friends who are always there. Nonetheless, something is wrong, it upsets everything and makes you feel sad.
Not being happy even though everything around is favorable is a common experience. A tremendous existential contradiction often mediated by a latent depression. However, we want to make sense of everything, we seek an objective explanation for everything.
We must accept, however, that mental disorders do not always have a clear origin. In the specific case of depression, it is common to drift into that abyss without knowing what prompted us to get there. And when that happens, we get angry with ourselves because we're not happy when we should be.
A sad soul can kill you faster, much faster than a germ
Reasons why one is sad despite having everything (apparently)
Why am I sad if my life is going well? Doing a search on the internet, we will discover that this is a question that often appears in forums or social networks.
Many people ask questions like: "Why was I diagnosed with depression if I have no reason to be sad?", "Why can't I appreciate what I have?".
We still don't understand the anatomy of mood disorders. We continue to think that depression is a form of sadness, above all, we place the sole responsibility on ourselves.
"You have anxiety, because you are too intense and you do not know how to take life in another way", "You suffer from depression because you are weak, lazy and you do not know how to appreciate the good that surrounds you".
Such reasoning is dangerous and further fuels the sense of guilt. Depression is a condition where multiple factors converge and not all of them are under our control.
Having everything is not always synonymous with happiness and well-being
We may have the best job in the world and a wonderful partner, but not be happy. It can happen, but we need to identify the element that causes the chaos.
Sometimes we take it for granted that certain dimensions will make us happy because it is "socially expected". When in reality authentic well-being can derive from other less "normative" aspects.
If you happen to wonder why you have been sad for a long time for no apparent reason, if you often reflect on your life, you should stop for a moment.
Certain factors such as stress indicate that despite having a precious family and friends, it is not possible to enjoy them. A lack of purpose and long-term goals also tends to cloud our well-being.
Being sad is a medical condition, not a choice
Nobody chooses their depression. No person voluntarily falls into a mood disorder. Depressions are conditions of multifactorial origin and not all of them are under our control. The following factors can affect:
- Neurological aspects. Research work done in the Department of Psychiatry at Mount Sinai School of Medicine in New York indicates the impact of neurobiological variables on depression. Genes, therefore, are among the aspects to consider.
- Psychosocial Adversity in Childhood. People who always feel sad even though their life is good, need to look back and remember their childhood. Sometimes, even with a happy present, the burden of past trauma increases the risk of depression.
- Stress maintained over time. We could have it all, a nice home, financial stability, a partner we love… Even so, enduring stressful situations for several months is a risk factor for depression.
The person who feels depressed "for no reason" when all is well in their life may be more reluctant to ask for help.
Look away from what you have and focus on your emotions
When one feels sad without an obvious cause, it shows double suffering. One feels guilty, even ungrateful. Why am I not happy if my partner loves me and I have a family? This disappointment prolongs the request for professional help, navigating between shame, frustration and weirdness.
Hopefully that emptiness will pass by itself, which will just be a bad time. However, apathy, despair and negative thoughts do not go away, they intensify.
It is important to ask for help when negative thoughts and emotional distress become a constant. Beyond beyond what we have, how we feel is the most relevant dimension.