In most cases, depression is a form of depressed sadness. It is unresolved sadness from long ago that has been stored in our unconscious and accessed when similar situations arise. Our Ego is unaware that this is unconscious material and tends to respond to these situations as if they were happening today. This forms a “complex,” which is a group of thoughts triggered by an emotional reaction that have a narrow perception of what’s really happening.

Since there is such a strong stigma around being sad, a person might not want to talk about what they are going through. This causes them to get stuck in the complex and experience thoughts of worthlessness, helplessness and isolation. All of these thoughts can lead to suicidal thoughts over time. They start with an inability to sit with pain and shame that causes isolation.

Seeking help is a critical first step since the individual has stepped out of normal thought patterns. Therapy helps them become aware of these negative thoughts and realize that they are not what make us. Mindfulness exercises, like meditation or yoga, can also be extremely helpful. From there, an exploration into past events that may be unconsciously influencing these feelings is done. This allows feelings to be expressed that couldn’t be in the past, which helps relieve the pain.

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