Will my depression go away now I'm free of the situation that caused it?
anonymous Asks ...
I have depression but I don’t feel better even though I am no longer in a difficult situation that caused my depression. I was in a work situation where I was systematically belittled, undermined, gossiped about and bullied for 18 months by a group of workers who were related and that were resentful that I got a higher job than they had. They got everyone in the company to sabotage and torpedo everything I tried to do so I would look incompetent. The harassment got so bad that I went to my employer but he wasn’t interested in helping and he told me that if I couldn’t do the management part of the job I would get demoted. I started feeling sick a lot from IBS and I had to take time off quite often which meant I couldn’t meet my objectives and my contract was not renewed. It was a horrible experience but it ended 2 months ago and I still don’t feel any better. I thought my depression would go away on its own after I was no longer faced with daily harassment. Will it?
Mark Hughes Says ...
Hello, and thanks for your quesion.
The short answer is that I can't predict what will or won't happen, and couldn't even if I knew a lot more about you and your situation. The fact is you are still feeling this, so what to do about it.
Certainly being out of the situation removes some pressure, though of course there may be others from the new situation. This may not help, and may be keeping the underlying susceptability active. Ultimately, there is usually something in us that gets us into situations like this, and often continues to do so until we realise something needs to change in ourselves. This might be how we respond to those feelings, our own attitude for example.
This is where working with a professional can help, not because they have the answer, but because they can help you see more clearly what is there and help you find a way to meet your inner needs. This can help you create better situations in your life, as well as making you less susceptible when difficulties do arise in your external situation.
One of the difficulties I experience with feelings of sadness, is accepting them and being with them. It is the fact we instinctively want rid of such unpleasant feelings that makes this so difficult, which again is where working with a counsellor or therapist can help, though it needs someone with experience who doesn't see the aim as getting rid of the feelings but rather to help you learn how to allow, accept and transform them.
Good luck. This is the most difficult, but the most worthwhile work, and for all the awfulness of depression it can also be an enormous opportunity if you are lucky enough to be able to make use of it.