Are you self-medicating yourself to numb the affects of depression?
What are you using to numb the pain of being sad and unhappy? Without denying it, first look at the different forms of “self-medicating” that I’m referring to:
- Unhealthy Relationships
- Food, i.e., over-eating, bulimia, anorexia, etc.
- Obsessive Actions, i.e., shopping, cutting, video game binges, compulsiveness, etc.
- Dangerous Activities, i.e., gang-affiliations, violence, etc.
There are others that aren’t listed here but understand that anything can be used to “self-medicate” the pain that is associated with depression. Many people don’t talk about the things that they use to “self-medicate” themselves. So many hide how they are really feeling. Depression hits more people than we know, every single day. Oftentimes, if the person is not a drug or alcohol abuser, the “self-medicating” aspect can go ignored for very long periods of time.
Sometimes depression isn’t noticed because it is masked by “self-medicating” activities. Do you know someone completely addicted to shopping and they don’t need anything? Have you ever wondered why a person joins a gang? How and why does a person who can’t afford a meal continue to purchase liquor? Why is a person promiscuous? What is the reason for an overwhelming amount of stuff in a persons home? Why does a person stay in an abusive relationship?
At the core of a person’s being (all of us, you and me), there’s a need for happiness. There’s a desire to be loved and accepted. A sense of basic security must be had in order to sleep at night. When the pain of depression has taken its toll and a person gives up hoping that the pain will ever end, there is a tendency to “self-medicate”.
My Truth: I’ve tried just about everything I listed above and a few others. Lots of these “self-medicating” behaviors give you a temporary feel-good moment. After the action wears off, you find yourself dealing with worse emotions than when you started. The problem that has depressed you starts to sit at the bottom of you being upset that you did something else that you shouldn’t have done.
It may not feel like it but God loves you so much that there is another way to deal with whatever you’re facing. There is a better to your situation. You are still alive. You are still breathing. You are able to read this right now. Yes, you’ve seen horrible times and everything hurts but you need to know that there is a better in this situation.
I encourage you to stop doing everything that you believe is “self-medicating”. I encourage you to look for God in the middle of whatever situation you are going through. Email me and ask for prayer at email@example.com, or message me. We’re here to listen and we’re here to pray. Stop the behavior that leaves you feeling worse in the end or simply not feeling any better at all.
…and their soul shall be as a watered garden; and they shall not sorrow any more at all.
…for I will turn their mourning into joy, and will comfort them, and make them rejoice from their sorrow.
…and my people shall be satisfied with my goodness, saith the LORD.
Jeremiah 31:12b, 13b and 14b