If you're dealing with depression after breakup, you're not alone. Many people experience this type of sadness and loneliness after a split. It can be hard to cope with the emotions that come along with a breakup, but there are ways to make it through. In this blog post, we will discuss some tips for dealing with depression after a breakup. We will also provide advice on how to get help if needed.
The basics of mental health and depression after a breakup
How can mental health be impacted by stressful life events?
According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, 43.8 million adults in the United States experience mental health issues in a given year. That's one in five people. Mental disorders like clinical depression are common, but often goes undetected because we don't talk about it enough. Stressful life events can trigger or worsen mental health events like clinical depression.
Examples of stressful life events include: losing a job, divorce, death of a loved one, chronic illness, and moving to a new place. When we experience these things, our bodies go into “fight or flight” mode. This is an evolutionary response that helped our ancestors survive when they were being chased by a predator. The problem is that when we experience chronic stress, our bodies never get a chance to return to normal.
This can lead to anxiety, clinical depression, insomnia, and other mental and physical health problems. If you are going through a stressful life event, it's important to seek help from a mental health professional. This can help you manage your symptoms and get through this difficult time.
What is situational depression?
Situational depression is a type of depression that is caused by a specific event or situation. It is often temporary, lasting for a few weeks or months, and typically responds well to treatment. However, in some cases it can become more chronic, lasting for years. Situational blues can be triggered by a wide range of events, including job loss, divorce, the death of a loved one, or any major life change.
It is important to note that not everyone who experiences a stressful event will develop situational depression. However, if you are struggling to cope with a significant change in your life, it is important to seek professional help. With treatment, any type of depression is highly treatable and most people are able to recover their mental health and wellbeing.
What is an adjustment disorder?
An adjustment disorder occurs when a person experiences significant emotional distress in response to a stressful event or change in their life. This can include events such as starting a new job, getting married, or going through a divorce. While it is normal to feel some stress in response to these types of changes, people with an adjustment disorder experience symptoms that are intense and long-lasting.
They may have difficulty sleeping, concentrating, or eating. They may also feel anxious, depressed, or irritable. In severe cases, people may turn to alcohol or drugs in an attempt to cope with their symptoms. If you are experiencing symptoms of an adjustment disorder, it is important to seek professional help. With treatment, you can learn how to manage your symptoms and make positive changes in your life.
Understanding your depression after a break up
Mourning a romantic relationship
The end of a romantic relationship can be a difficult and painful experience. It's common to feel a sense of loss, confusion, and loneliness. It's important to give yourself time to grieve and allow yourself to feel whatever emotions come up. Don't try to push yourself through the grieving process or bottle up your feelings. Instead, try to be patient with yourself and understand that it will take time to heal. Seek out support from friends and family, or consider talking to a therapist if you're struggling. Take care of yourself during this difficult time, and eventually you will begin to heal.
Experiencing the feelings when a romantic relationship ends
People usually do experience a depressed mood, or depression, after a breakup. But only rarely does this transform from normal sadness into something like major depressive order. When it does, it's often because folks are suppressing their painful emotions. Emotional pain is an important part of the human experience. Counterintuitively, actually feeling sad is one way to find your way back to happiness.
From childhood, many of us are taught to bottle up our demotions. So we may try to distract ourselves from our emotional response instead of acknowledging and experiencing depression that our minds want to help us overcome our emotional pain. Ignoring, suppressing, or distracting ourselves away from our depression after a break up can lead to major issues, like:
- Self esteem issues
- Weight gain or loss
- Substance abuse or drug addiction
- Obsessive thoughts
A romantic relationship breakup can be rough, but try living in the present moment – even if it means feeling sad. If you feel your feelings in the moment, you may find yourself better able to overcome depression after a breakup.
The healing process for depression after a breakup
Know that there are not normal reactions to breaking up romantic relationships. Major life changes will ALWAYS carry the risk of major depression and depression like symptoms. After all, temporary depression like symptoms are always a natural response to an upending event like a romantic breakup. Whether or not it moves into something like major depressive disorder will depend on your personal well being and brain biochemistry.
But if you feel “stuck” for more than a few weeks, you might consider reaching out for help. Feeling depressed, feeling lonely, low self esteem, and low mood are normal when they are fleeting. Social support can help you move through it when you feel sad or feel angry.
But if your breakup depression is impacting your ability to do things like hold other relationships, achieve life satisfaction or personal growth, it might be time to talk to a doctor or a friend. If you've been stuck in a mood for at least two weeks, reach out to your doctor. Your doctor may be able to prescribe medications to temporarily help you move through your broken heart. Breakup depression is incredibly common – and doctors are set up to take care of you.