As a man, being told by society that you aren’t allowed to express sadness is hard enough. But when you are a man and introverted, it’s even harder to reconcile feeling down or even more of a severe state: depression. Depression is overwhelming and can be debilitating. Here’s what a self-identified introverted man said about having depression.
“Men are told they are just supposed to drink whiskey because it’s a manly thing to do. It doesn’t help depression; it’s like self-medicating, so you don’t have to seek help because you think you have the problem under control. In reality, you’re feeding into depression, bottling up emotions, and losing touch with that part of you. The emotions end up coming out in unhealthy ways.”
For a man who internalizes emotions, drinking alcohol isn’t going to fix depression, but rather exacerbate the mental health issue. You might think that drinking will distract you from your problems and make you feel relaxed, but in fact, alcohol is a depressant, and it intensifies depressed symptoms.
You’ll go out drinking, feel good, and the next day you’re thrown back into a depressive slump. Now you’re unhealthy emotionally, and you may end up feeling disappointed in yourself for believing that drinking can solve your problems. When you forget the connection between alcohol and depression, you might try this tactic again and again to alleviate your problems. Then, the same thing happens again, and you’re stuck in a feedback loop feeling defeated.
Self Medication Doesn’t Work
You might think that having a drink will lift your mood, but that’s only temporary. Drinking isn’t the only kind of self-medication out there. There are also things like compulsive spending. If you’re an introverted man, you likely have few close friends, but you may spend time alone decompressing. If you’re depressed, that isolation can become more intense. Even when you’re isolating, there are still ways to connect to the world like going online.
Once you’re on the Internet and already feeling depressed, you might be tempted to buy things. However, when you purchase unnecessary items online that you don’t need, you might feel the best at the moment, but after you drain your bank account and can’t pay your bills, that’s a huge problem. Instead of self-medicating with stuff, seek help for the root of the problem: depression.
Asking For Help
When you’re introverted and depressed, it can be challenging to break out of your shell and reach out for the help you desperately need. You’re already internalizing your emotions as a baseline, and then you add on depression, that’s a double whammy.
However, if you don’t seek help, your depression will worsen, and the isolation will perpetuate. Reach out to a trusted friend and ask them to help find a mental health professional who can support you. There’s a specific kind of therapy that helps to treat your symptoms: depression counseling.
A counselor who understands how depression affects us is trained to get you out of your funk and functioning again. Life isn’t perfect, but isolating from your problems is only going to perpetuate the problem.
Healing is Possible
You might feel like you don’t know have the means to pull yourself out of your slump. But, that’s not true. Depression lies to us, and if we pay attention to its voice, we will remain stagnated. Regardless of whether you’re introverted or extroverted, depression affects all kind of people in different ways. It’s not about who you are; it’s about what you do to help yourself recover from a severe mental health condition.
Being introverted might make it harder for you to talk about depression, but it’s essential to your recovery that you find a way to speak openly and honestly about your symptoms so you can begin to manage them and cope. Your life will likely improve once you see the right therapist to talk to, one who you can communicate with about your feelings, no matter how overwhelming they may seem. Depression is common and treatable. Don’t wait; start talking about you is going through now.