Fear of Happiness

I’m afraid of happiness.

Yep, you read right. It sounds almost like an oxymoron. I fear what most everyone is constantly searching.

I’ve always thought I cling onto my depression. And, like I said, it has to do with fear of happiness. Or, better said, fear of the unknown. I can’t say there have not been moments where I have felt happy. But they have been just that, moments. On the whole, I think I have a bit of characterological depression (see this post by Haven at Beyond the Borderline Personality).

The truth is, depression is a darkness I wouldn’t wish upon anyone. It’s not something I want to have. However, I fear what would happen in my life if I didn’t feel that darkness within me. I have always been depressed, to some extent. Hell, I recently read my diary from when I was 9 years old and in one of the entries I wrote: “I hate my life.” I have always been this way, there is no other reality I know of. Thus, I fear that if I were to be happy I would stop being me (whoever that is).

Also, like I said in my previous post, my past history of bullying has a lot to do with my fear of happiness. I was always made fun of at moments in my life when I felt joy, or happiness. So, I fear that if I demonstrate happiness, I will be ridiculed. It sounds almost irrational, but I’ve been conditioned to think that I’m not supposed to be happy. I don’t deserve it.

Finally, I fear happiness because it would potentially mean the end of my therapeutic relationship with M. I constantly avoid explicitly telling her that my depression has gotten better, simply because I fear it would mean the end of the relationship. I also fear abandonment to the extreme, so this also affects my recovery terribly. Unfortunately, though, I know this has to happen eventually if I want to get better. This brings me to the questions: Am I even ready for recovery? Do I truly want this for myself?

I know it has a lot to do with BPD, because like I said, I fear abandonment, and losing the therapeutic relationship would mean abandonment to my irrational brain. What I mean is, I would rather stay miserable than lose my relationship with M and feel abandoned. It makes recovery from depression a thousand times harder. I cling onto my depression because it gives me the attention my BPD brain craves. That’s why sometimes I feel ready for recovery, while other times I push back and think recovery is the enemy.

Well, that’s enough for today. I have to study for my coming test or else I won’t be able to be a doctor 😦

  1. I completely understand where you are coming from in this post. Well, I at least get how you feel that trepidation and hesitation towards happiness. It is really scary!!! For us it would be a big change, and change is always unknown.

    And wow I feel exactly the same about therapists. If I disclose when I'm recovering they might go away, and I NEED them, you know? Anyway that is at least how I relate to what you're saying πŸ™‚

    I think it's great you have written it out though. You will be a wonderful doctor, you are already so intimate with the complexities of being human. Love, Jess


  2. Thank you for the lovely comment, Jess! You just inspired me to write another post, haha!


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