Dealing with Depression/feelings of guilt


QUESTION: I read that you want a lot of detail. I will give my background to my question in as much depth as possible, but in truth I am suffering from several different disorders and have so much history I could include it would literally take me all night, so I will tell as much as I can that I think directly pertains to this issue of mine, but feel free to ask me to elaborate anything if you need me to  - my stories would be enough to fill several books and I obviously can't do that here.

I have a history of major depressive disorder that started when I was about 13, and anxiety that began shortly after (maybe always had it to some degree). I always had OCD but I was the only one who suspected it until I hit about 23 when it ballooned to an obvious level. I have suffered from PTSD twice, once due to an event where my mom and dad got into a fight and she left (but returned hours later) and then due to a PPH I suffered during childbirth.  My anxiety went sky-rocketing to full-fledged panic attacks and the odd delusions.

Family history: Grew up to parents who were great, mom was a saint, dad was a great involved loving dad BUT together they had issues. dad had a temper (no violence or yelling or anything, but more the silent treatment type temper) and took it out on mom, it was tense, he was unfair to her. I've always said he was a great dad but a terrible husband.  But overall my childhood was very happy - my parents were attentive, they spent loads of time playing with me, as a fmaily we were goofy and silly together and as parents my parents worked well together and were on the same page. They danced and sang together and we laughed and as far as I
am concerned my childhood was near perfect.  I started seeing how unhappy my mother was in her relationship (it wasn't hard to see how bad dad treated her as I got older...) and she did start confiding in me how depressed she was as I approached adulthood. That took a tole on me.  Morals and values meant a lot to my whole family and kindness courteousness, respect and consideration for others.  Any time was a good time for stories about the past, and with those the values of my ancestral history was passed on and infused in me.  I grew up, my mom became a great friend, I have a great relationship with my dad and as I got older have told him what I think about how he treats mom. He and I talk openly and her and I talk openly. I wanted to basically have a fmaily just like the one I grew up with (sans issues with the husband) and married the man I loved, but to my dismay he's almost incapable of meeting my emotional needs due to the differences in how we grew up. I grew up in a family where we all were very connected and in tune with each other and anticipated each others needs and how our own actions would affect one another with lots of hugs and love, etc. he grew up in a household where everything was shoved under the rug - talk wasn't about anything deep, his mom never held them or cuddled them (she told me that) and you did for yourself...if you had a need you were to ask but nobody was expected to lift a finger until you told them to. (an example where this comes in is stuff like I'll tell him "I'm about to vacuum the couch because I have a meeting in here today in a half hour, I prefer to meet in this room,would you mind if I use this one or should I vacuum the other one in the other room?" and he'll be sitting there and say, "yeah you can use this one." so I'll come in with the vaccuum, set it up, start vacuuming and he STILL won't get up. I actually have to ASK him to move again because, "in my house we just don't think about each others needs that way. If you want it you ask for it."  Whereas in my house the person would have most likely not even been SITTING on that couch having likely already anticipated that the meeting would best happen in that room and been kind and thoughtful enough to set up shop in the less nice room from the get-go, but if they HAD already been sitting there they'd be packing up by the time the vacuum got plugged in). In the end this difference adds up to a lot more than that and I often feel like I have nobody I can really talk to that's listening. other than that we're on the same page headed in the same direction and basically enjoy each other's company.

Now, I don't know if ANY of the history I just gave you pertains to my question, which is this:

I have this chronic issue with feeling guilty.  I feel bad for being me, basically. Even when I'm SURE I feel a certain way about an issue, if someone suggests that I might be wrong I worry I'm a bad person in their eyes and worry maybe I'm making a mistake in my choices, even if I know I'm right, or even if I know it's an issue what has no clear right or wrong. And today I realized why.

Basically we all (I'm assuming) have traits about people we simply dislike or can not respect. For whatever our reasons not everyone loves everyone else's actions or choices. I have always long since known that my biggest issue is when I meet people who think they are always right, and really seem to think they're the cat's meow. I think it bugs me because quiet often they're actually people who do a lot of damage to others but they are completely unwilling to even consider that their own actions are hurtful or harmful, or could be hurtful or harmful. Without acknowledging that just *maybe* they need to listen to other people once in a while, and other points of view, these people can never change their bad habits. They don't seem to realize that growth only takes place when you consider the possibility for improvement, and examine the failures.  I've known too many people like that who have directly caused me much grief but seem blissfully unaware of it.  They irk me because they're not evil enough to outright tell off, but they're causing no less problems than the bad people. the difference is that many of the bad people actually take a look at their life and try to see where the damage was caused and make amends. The people I dislike are those who think so highly of themselves that if they harm someone it's the other person's fault.  One example of many different kinds: If it's 3am and I can't sleep for the 4th night this week because they're blasting their music having a party and I ask them to please turn it down, I'm the inconsiderate one in their minds, because they can "do what they want".  They could have while neighborhoods of people asking them politely to turn it down but they never stop to consider if maybe they're the jerks and not us. And I'm not talking about the beer guzzling bad boys - believe it or not many of them are well aware of who they are - I'm talking about the office diva or the hard-core granola who does so much 'good' they never consider they might actually be a jerk underneath it all.   I have always disliked those type of people. If you're going to be a jerk at least know you're one.

But then I started examining it and realized my feelings of guilt are that I absolutely do NOT want to EVER be one of those people. I want to be the type of person I most respect: which is someone willing to accept that not everything I do is going to be good or right, and willing to be ready to take criticism and figure out if I need to improve myself or of I can let it go. I wan to make sure the world knows I'm not ignoring humanity -I am listening! I'm not a selfish jerk!  I don't WANT to hurt people! I don't want to do bad things and I will NOT be one of those people to KNOW I am causing damage and just keep doing it and shrug it off. I CARE and there is nothing wrong with caring about others. I care about my kids, so I have to consider other people's views on how I raise them assuming my way may actually damage them. I have to assume that anything I do may be bad if someone says it is, and I wan tto care enough to really really try to do my best. The problem is, though, that sometimes I don't KNOW what is best. I only think something is best but don't for sure 100% know. THEN I just feel guilty. I can't change it if I don't agree with their suggestion. but I can't feel good about ignoring it, either. It's like I took a valid dislike in other people and somehow accidentally blew it way out of proportion in my own life. But I can't stop! I just have too little respect for the people who don't give a rats butt about how other people feel I firmly believe that attitude is going to destroy us as a civilization -we're losing consideration and respect for one another, and we're losing the ability to listen to others and take advice.  It doesn't mean we always have to, it just means we should listen and consider advice without being defensive. but now a days everyone is defensive. I don't want to be one of them.  But I also don't want to go as far as I am to consider my own faults. I'm supposed to aim for being nice, not perfect. I am cognitively aware of that. but for some reason I am-aiming for perfection and I feel guilty if I find I'm not meeting it.  what is up with this?

ANSWER:  Hi Teg,

"But then I started examining it and realized my feelings of guilt are that I absolutely do NOT want to EVER be one of those people."

This sounds like fear rather than guilt, unless you are one of those people? Guilt happens after the fact. First the event. Your reaction to the stimulus. Feeling bad as a result of the reactions. Then guilt over your behavior. Unless you are one of those people, then what you are feeling is not guilt, but fear! An example of guilt would be, if you were triggered by someone's arrogance, verbally assaulted them and then afterwards you felt bad for doing that. The awareness that you were not behaving in an expected fashion would trigger the guilt as a result of those actions. However, this is not the case. According to this paraphrase, you fear being like one of those people. You are not admitting guilt of being one of them! A slight confusion. Unless you are one of those people and then feel bad, then you would feel guilty for being like them. Especially so if you hate those types of people in the first place and then discover you are like that which you hate. That would trigger guilt. Guilt however,  is not what you are conveying here.

"I have this chronic issue with feeling guilty. I feel bad for being me, basically."

This sounds more like confusion rather than guilt. To feel bad one must have a sense of expected behaviours along with an awareness that current behaviors fall short of those expectations. The realization that you are not behaving as expected would trigger feeling bad. However, this does not seem to be the case with you. You seem very aware of your actions and invoke care and caution within yourself not to be like one of them. Thereby, you avoid doing bad. The confusion surfaces within this realm of feeling bad as opposed to feeling guilt over behaviors that are a direct result of being bad. Feeling bad and being bad are not the same thing! This is where you are confused. Chronic guilt is not a foregone conclusion any more than does feeling bad make you bad. Feeling bad does not necessarily follow your assertions as they pertain to guilt since you do not seem to be doing bad.

"Even when I'm SURE I feel a certain way about an issue, if someone suggests that I might be wrong I worry I'm a bad person in their eyes..."

Herein lies a pattern. Bad seems to be a fixation within your lexicology. The worry generated over the fear of being bad hides the root cause under a layer of self-imposed guilt. The guilt you feel may be related to an errant fear that you may be seen as bad! Due to this possibility therefore, your past falls under scrutiny. Your past is in-congruent with your complaints. It does not reflect in harmony with what your story relates to your sense of badness that you fixate on in your social interactions. Nor does it harmonize with your claims of personal disorder that started somewhere prior to your thirteenth year and which ballooned by the time you were twenty three. A saintly mother, a great loving father, a very happy childhood, open communications, connected, in tune, near perfect... these do not foster major depressive episodes, OCD, PTSD!

"I started seeing how unhappy my mother was in her relationship (it wasn't hard to see how bad dad treated her as I got older...) and she did start confiding in me how depressed she was as I approached adulthood. That took a toll on me."

This exposes the conflict. It begins to harmonize with that underlying fabric that is conducive to the disorders you mention. Something, or someone, must have instilled more than this:

"Morals and values meant a lot to my whole family and kindness courteousness, respect and consideration for others."

For you to have such a fear of being seen as being bad instilled within you, something more had to happen in your development to cause this fear.

Maybe the elaborate description you detail is of someone in your development that was always asserting they were right ( and made you feel as you were always wrong, or bad)? The cats meow arrogant! Someone maybe whose inconsideration hurt others (quite possibly they hurt you specifically)? Someone who did not listen to others? They could care less about your opinions. Unchanging in their ways. A subtly evil sort who lives on the borderline and cannot quite be labelled as such. Someone who blames their errors on others (quite possibly blaming you)? If not, then quite possibly the elaborate description you give would not be so well defined of that which you hate so deeply if it were not so ingrained within you. If this were not of someone you knew so well. The description would not be so elaborate nor bother you so deeply. If it were just arrogant people in general, you could avoid them. Perhaps this is someone you cannot or could not avoid. For that reason, the description becomes deep rooted due to your inability to avoid them. Hence the elaborate description of that which you hate so deeply and know so well.

You want to be seen a certain way and you fear that you aren't. This causes you worry that you might be seen as bad despite your efforts to be good. This fear stems from development. If that unavoidable something, or someone is the cause, then that unresolved conflict needs to be addressed. Brought out in the open and exorcised for the harm it has caused. This would take courage to face that. Fear of facing that unresolved conflict is the chains that may be holding you in bondage to the symptoms that point to a not so near perfect past.

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

Thank you for your in-depth answer. For the most part it's pretty good and much of it I agree with. I think you misunderstood what I feel guilty about. My point of the feeling guilty was that I AM worried I'm going to be come a hypocrite because I feel it's virtually impossible to be 100% considerate of other points of view (it IS impossible!) but therein also lies where I am over-embellishing my own criticism of myself. In reality, with other people I can see clearly the type of people I dislike and they're few and far between -I don't hate everyone who isn't 100% willing to take criticism and try to improve based on other people's suggestion, I only dislike the extreme cases. But then when I apply that logic to myself I for some reason don't allow error - for myself I view myself as one of those types of people for every single time I go against what someone else tells me.  For example, I used bumper pads on my babies crib. I was told it's dangerous, but when my baby kept getting stuck between the mattress and the side I was worried - she ended up bruised so often i wanted to stick something in there to stop her from getting hurt. However, me being me, before I did this I took precaution not to just ignore common advice and I did my research out of respect for their point of view, and just in case they were right I didn't want to use bumper pads if it turned out it might actually do harm.  I did in depth research and learned that in 99% of all cases involving SIDS related to bumper pads the infants had underlying issues to begin with, and the left over 1% attributes to a whopping roughly 5 deaths per year in all of the United states, (and even those it can't be proven it was the bumper pads that caused the deaths) - FAR less than the number of infant deaths due to car accidents, yet nobody ever goes on a "don't drive with your infant" kick, so I weighed the pros and cons and decided that I just don't buy into the hype that bumper pads would kill my kids.  I did my research. I went by facts and went with my gut. yet I am still such a jerk for throwing it in the face of those parents who had their kids die that way.  That makes me feel like I ignored the advice of others and treated my own opinions like I actually know BETTER than them, and if I am acting like my opinions are better then I am doing exactly what I hate about the other people, therefore I feel guilty I'm one of them, like a hypocrite. Except if it were anyone else who made this decision I WOULDN'T have viewed them as "one of those people I dislike"...especially if they did their homework first...yet when it's myself I judge my harsher, even though I don't mean to.  I know I don't know better. I know I'm not better, I just simply can't help what I believe, which is that the bumpers wouldn't hurt them, but that those bars WERE hurting them. Yet I feel so bad I went against popular advice.  And you're right, is is partly a fear people will think I'm bad. I don't want people viewing me, for example, as a bad or uncaring mom(one of those moms who puts her kid in danger because she's ignorant. I did care, which is why i did hours of research before making my choice. but nobody else knows that. All I am to them is that jerk mom who puts her kid in danger when all evidence (that they're aware of) suggests bumpers will kill.  It makes me feel bad, and worried. I try hard to be good but what's the point if you come across looking evil?  

But you're right about the possibility of feeling like someone like that is stuck to me, but I think it's not exactly a past problem. Thanks for mentioning this because I may not have been able to connect the dots without your suggestions.

What I said about how I grew up was true - I didn't even realize my parents had issues with each other until I was around 11. I was happy, my parents went out of their way for me (this might be part of the problem, too, that I grew up in a world where doing for others was what is was all about, and in reality it's a ME world...I can't seem to adjust well to it. My mom was chronically ill when i was young. any other mother would have packed it in.  She hid it from me. She was so ill she literally couldn't walk but she'd pull up a blanket on the floor beside the bathroom and lay there to play dolls. She'd be in the hospital for weeks at a time but still take me trick or treating AND make my home made costume because she didn't want ot be one of those passive moms who runs out and buys a pre-made costume without putting the love into it.  Get my drift? I grew up in a word where I heard an awful lot about how much she wanted to be involved and how much it meant the world to her to go above and beyond for her kid to squeeze every ounce out of herself she could to give me a happy childhood.  And she did against all odds - my mom LITERALLY wanted to take me to the beach once a year so badly but she was too sick to do it due to her crone's disease so she actually stopped eating all food, nothing but water for TWO WEEKS every year just so she could make it through our holidays.  I asked her why she'd go that far and she'd respond "you deserved to have that experience as a kid it's not your fault I got so sick and it's my job as the mom to give it to you." Once we were low on cash and meal after meal she fed me and my dad and ate only scraps. Why, I asked, did she not just tell my dad to go without a meal one day so she could eat? She responded because she love she never complained about it. she just put herself last every single time if it came to a choice. and I learned that when you truly love something it's easy to put ones self last if need be. She didn't bad mouth other people. she never worded it that the bad parents do less for their kids, but she worded things in such a way I understood that doing less didn't make sense.  If you love your kids why NOT do it right? why skip things or take short cuts? Because it's easier? Kids are only young once. She went far for me but didn't spoil me - I had strict rules. It was more stuff like she taught me that a promise is a promise - if she said we were going to the playground we were, or else she wouldn't have said it. Even if a friend she hadn't seen in 20 years randomly dropped by and asked for a visit she'd say, "sorry, but I promised my kid we were going out. if you can wait until after then sure, but if not it will have to be another time." SHE didn't come first, her word came first because how I viewed my ability to trust her mattered to her more than some random drop-by from a person who could have called first if it meant so much to them. Basically she set a standard that has been nearly impossible to follow. I myself a chronically ill and with my own kids I need to take days where I just lay on the couch. I have to - and I am not nearly as sick as she was back then.  She got me in bed on time every night, perfect routine and schedule, even on holidays, because my well being and how it made me feel to stay up late mattered more to her than her own fun and keeping me awake for her own gain. she taught me that if parents keep their kids out late they say it's for the kids but it really isn't - the kids feel worse the next day and for no real gain because if it's past bedtime they start getting miserable anyways.  I have two kids now and it turns out she's right - the kids do get miserable and don't enjoy themselves if they're up late and I do agree and believe that parents who keep their kids up are doing it for themselves, not their kids.  But that said how in the heck was she able to be so perfect at not being selfish?!  I try to follow her lead but we have neighbors who are our best friends with kids of their own and form time to time we'll be over at their house for dinner and lo and behold we'll be having a blast and keep the kids out and extra 40 mins longer because WE don't want to leave - inside my head I want to do what's right for them but the pull of having fun is so alluring and strong sometimes I can't fight it.  Not often, but sometimes.  So I think she set an unrealistic example for me of what the human mind is capable of.  SHE was capable, but most are not. she never got mad at me for being less than her, or got mad about much but in my won head I constantly wonder why I can't be like her - I look up to her so much as a person and yet even though she is who I aspire to be I can NOT even come close to being as selfless as her. I am more selfish, by nature. I am my dad all the way.  But even though I can't be like her I can at least strive to try to be, and that matters to me, which is where I thin the problem comes in.

I am tied to people who cause me grief that I can't get away from. My in laws.  They stand for everything I hate about people. Mothers who won't hold their children? Makes me sick. we all make mistakes but THAT? That's extreme.  But more than that is things like this:
they're hippy granola types - "good" people.  always mild mannered, never utter a word in anger, never judge others, help the needy, plant a tree. Which is fine, the community loves them. they are loved. But things happen that drive me up a wall: we have a shoes off at the door house rule. They walk in with their shoes every time. I once asked my mother in law if she would please remove her shoes at the door (this is after making them do it for 5 years) and she looked at me and point blank said, "NO."  NO?!  NO?!  Who says that? It's pure awfulness. our house, our rules, how rude can one get?  I even offered to supply her with slippers. They come in an re-arrange my furniture. couches, tables, chairs. They refuse to wash their hands when my babies were newborns. If I had a rule (like if the baby is asleep please don't go into her room) they broke it. But what gets me is that they're constantly asking us why they don't feel more well received in our home - they told us outright they dislike the fact that we requested a phone call before they drop by. "your house should be the same as ours, we should feel like it's our house, too. that's what we want." they told us one day. I explained that it was just that I don't feel comfortable with drop-ins and they couldn't understand why I wouldn't feel comfortable in their presence. This enraged me because all i could think was, "um, ya think it's because you change my house set-up, refuse to follow house rules and outright tell me you won't remove your shoes?!"  It goes so much deeper than that, hundreds of examples, literally. They are the ones who are oblivious to the fact that they're idiots. and I can't deal with it. I can't get rid of them, but my patience wears thin.  They don't believe in germs and therefore never wash their hands. I say this very literally - they will not wash after going to the bathroom, OR if they've dealt with raw chicken. I've seen them walk around with chicken blood on their hands and touch everything around them - chairs, tables, spoons, coffee cups. They will not get the flu shot and also refuse to stay away from us when they're sick, which is a hude kick in my face as my mother is on immuno-supressants - one flu could potentially kill her. yet these yahoos keep showing up sick, without even washing their hands. Is this the making of "good" people? I think they're awful inconsiderate selfish jerks - about the most selfish people i have EVER met in my entire life to tell you the truth. Yet they hide behind the guise of "vegetarian, animal-loving, mild-mannered, never judging" etc. They truly believe their stuff doesn't smell. But all the lack of judging other people they have doesn't mean that it's not totally rude to refuse to wash your hands in someone else's house when they have a newborn if you're asked to. I made a judgement call that due to the improper hand-washing and the handling of raw meats in the kitchen that I won't eat, nor will I allow the kids to eat, food that they've cooked that may be contaminated. I won't die because of their beliefs. I am fine with their beliefs but I won't be forced to be a part of them.  They think germs don't exist that's their choice, but I think spreading chicken blood all over the house can lead to ecoli poisoning. Of course refusing to do dinner at their house without bringing our own has upset them and they can't understand why we're being so hard.  I WANT this to be easier. I want to like them! But I can't risk my kids eating from a kitchen like that. I even talked to the doctor about it before making my call. He thinks it's a bad risk, too. Yet they never stop to consider maybe I'm not the jerk, maybe I'm not sabotaging this relationship, maybe it's that they're jerks. Maybe it's rude to behave how they behave.

and don't get me wrong. I am always pleasant. I always smile. I always talk. I never confront them or argue with them.  I am not outwardly rude.  Nor do I want to screw up this relationship for my kids - I speak highly of them around my kids and encourage as much time with them as possible. they live far away but we see them regularly despite my issues. But I refuse to eat their food and I refuse to allow drop-ins.  This bugs them and they can't understand my problems with these things.  But where it all plays into how I feel about me is that on one hand I have my mom who set a high standard for me to follow. and I look up to her. so I try. but these two are different they have a very low standard. and all ai am trying to do in my life is be who I have always wanted to be - my own mother, and these two are so against most of what i do. They eye-roll me. They tell my husband that me being who i've always wanted to be isn't about me being the mom i want but about me trying to screw them over. an example of this is how I want to leave their house to get home in time for bedtime. It's just who I am, it's what I believe is right. But if we leave, even if we're an hour late than we'd wanted to be, they still call him up after and say they feel like I'm always trying to run whisk the kids home. I treat everyone like that! With the exception of the odd time at my neighbour's house. and that makes me feel bad, in truth. Somehow it annoys me more that they expect me to change my ways for THEM, that they don't even see my point of view. Yes I am less willing to bend my rules for them, but part of that reason is the fact I can't stand that they expect me to bend them. I hate that if I sayb we need to get heading home they give me the eye roll, like i am some awful person. News flash this is one area I am doing the right thing in based on who MY kids are. maybe theirs did well without bedtimes, but mine are not like that, nor have they been raised like that. not to mention 40 mins late next door is a far cry from being trapped 2 hours away an hour late already. I feel helpless. I want to try to be like my mom as much as I can, but they basically hate her way of doing stuff and can't understand why i want to be like her. and I resent them even more for hating her way BECAUSE of the fact that they went too far the OTHER way. She was too good to me they were too un-good.  I'm more receptive to criticism when it comes from people whose opinions I respect in the first place, but these two represent the exact opposite of everything I have ever respected or ever been taught.   which is where the issue lies: I am the people I hate because I just said "I am more receptive to criticism"..I am more receptive to criticism by anyone and everyone. except them. To be happy with myself I feel like I have to consider their way of living as a viable option. I feel like I have to listen to them. But I am so turned off by them I can't open up to it. I just can't. I try....but something inside of me is so disgusted by them for being the opposite of my own upbringing that I can't turn off my anger.  and my anger makes me blind to my own actions. therefore i over compensate by being too good and too perfect in the rest of my life. As though that might make up for the fact I simply can't stand my in-laws.  I keep trying to give them the benefit of the doubt but it keeps going awry.  My MIL goes on and on about how she wants to know her grandkids better, yet when she visits she won't play with them! My daughter asked to read her a story she wrote and my MIl talked through it all!  My daughter asks her to play games and she outright says, No, then complains that she doesn't know my daughter as intimately as her other friends know their grandchildren. If she spent any time with them she would know them a heck of a lot better!  We will invite them down for an afternoon and over and over again they're double-book themselves and only spend an hour or two with us. then they complains that it's me who appears to be trying to whisk everyone away. how? because my kids have a bedtime? how is that worse than admitting you decided to go to a friends house for dinner instead of our house when you come into town?  rude!  For four years they would not show up on time, they showed up a bare minimum of three hours late every single time, making us have to wait, unable to make other plans because we didn't know when they were showing up.  They only baby sat once and that day I'd told them NOT to put my 1 year old anywhere near rocks because she eats them. I came home to find her sitting IN a pile of rocks outside unattended while my MIl was inside the house. I was furious!  I have tried, tried and will try some more to love these people, but something inside me is making me dislike them and I feel so bad for it. why do i care so much? why can't I just hate them and be okay with hating them?

Hi Teg,

You assert that I may have misunderstood what you feel guilty about. Your claim is:

"My point of the feeling guilty was that I AM worried I'm going to become a hypocrite."

While in your first contact you said this:

"I have this chronic issue with feeling guilty. I feel bad for being me, basically... Even when I'm SURE I feel a certain way about an issue, if someone suggests that I might be wrong I worry I'm a bad person in their eyes...I started examining it and realized my feelings of guilt are that I absolutely do NOT want to EVER be one of those people [inconsiderate]. I want to be the type of person I most respect: which is someone willing to accept that not everything I do is going to be good or right, and willing to be ready to take criticism and figure out if I need to improve myself or if I can let it go."

I don't doubt your current claim that you worry of being a hypocrite. I do however doubt the claim that I misunderstood what you presented in your first contact. My response was that you confused guilt for fear and that this fear fostered worry that you may be seen as bad despite your efforts to do good. That fear of being seen as being bad was instilled within you from some stimulus within your development. This analysis was based on the findings of the information you presented within the  previous document.

To reiterate:

"You want to be seen a certain way and you fear that you are not. This causes you worry that you might be seen as bad despite your efforts to be good. This fear stems from development. If that unavoidable something, or someone is the cause, then that unresolved conflict needs to be addressed. Brought out in the open and exorcised for the harm it has caused. This would take courage to face that. Fear of facing that unresolved conflict is the chains that may be holding you in bondage to the symptoms that point to a not so near-perfect past."

Your current fleeting statement of worry purposes to divert attention away from that unresolved conflict that emanates from your past. A past that does not present with congruence. Your claims of a near-perfect childhood and the disorders you confessed to experiencing contrast heavily against each other. It may be something you do want to confront, feel that you have to, but are not quite sure you should. Underneath all the complaints about in-laws though hides the real reason you made contact.

I doubt you made contact to complain about in-laws. Everyone has in-laws and most probably do not like theirs either. However, they are not here expressing their malcontent. What good would it do them? Yet, you are! At great length too! This can not be about in-laws and the discontent they cause you in your life. Even though their dysfunctional ways are probably all true, I doubt it is the reason you made contact.

There is more going on inside than you want to admit, but deep down know you need to confront it. Something in my previous response invoked this second step. Even though it was heavily masked by complaint, the approach is plain to hear underneath all that residue.
Disorder is not what you think it is. Nor is it what "professionals" tell you it is. Disorder stems from thought and the power you give to it. Disorder does not reside in the behaviours. Disorder lays in the thoughts which drive the behaviours. Thoughts that form in the brain. They remain there clinging to cellular structures waiting for synapses to fire to release them so they can manifest into aberrant processes. It is those thoughts which you cling to that fire causing past conflicts to affect your present structure within reality. This is the root of disorder and despite what the past may hold, thought and the power you give it is the key to present reality without aberration from the past impacting your happiness.

In-laws being what they are: imperfect souls on the same journey through life, fighting the same demons that hold them in their dysfunctions; are part and parcel of any marriage. The collision course between opposites in marriages is inevitable. The underlying ramifications of unresolved conflicts though are slightly different. They do not have to hold you bondage either but they are not as legally challenging to get rid of as in-laws are. In-laws can become out-laws but patterns of clingy or anticipatory variations in thought are the root of all disorder and they will not go away without a fight. Whether that be experienced through the dysfunctional thought patterns of in-laws or our own, thoughts permeate the brain and this causes the behaviours to become what they are. Despite what happened in the past thoughts can be controlled so they do not have to affect your present or future. I am not so sure about your in-laws.

Dealing with Depression

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Amper Sun


Depression, anxiety, self esteem, guilt, loss, grief, spiritual uncertainty!


Thirty years treating individual, families, at-risk-youth in counselling and psycho-therapy.


Master Practitioner of Counselling and Psychotherapy - M.P.C.P. designation.

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