There are some days when I feel that we are being bombarded with platitudes telling us to be grateful for what we have. There are endless quotes that say we need to remember what we have because there are people who have less. Well I am sick of it.
I am sick of being grateful that I have money because there are people who have less than me. There are people who can’t eat, who can’t have the things that I have. I am better off than the people below me I am told.
I am sick of being grateful that I have a roof over my head because there are people who would give their right arm to have a house. There are people who live on the streets and never know where there next meal is coming from. I am told to be grateful that I have neighbours to complain about.
I am sick of being grateful that at least I only have a mental illness and I am physically well. I am told that depression isn’t so bad, there are people who have it worse. What do I have to be depressed about?
I am sick of being grateful that I have a child. There are people who would love to have a child. I am sick of being told that I should relish all of the bad times as well as the good times because I will miss them.
I am sick of being grateful that I can afford private psychiatric treatment. There are other people who are at the mercy of the public system and the treatment that they can afford to give. I am told to be grateful that I have this opportunity, that I can’t be too bad off if I can afford the treatment.
I am sick of being grateful that someone has chosen to love me. I have Borderline Personality Disorder, a turbulent past and I’m not always a joy to be around so I should be grateful that anyone even wants to spend time with me. I am told to settle, at least there is someone willing to go the distance, because obviously I am nothing more than a sum of my symptoms.
Most of all, I am sick of being told that expressing my feelings means that I am being ungrateful. I am sick of feeling guilty that I am not 100% happy with my circumstances. Sure, gratitude isn’t always a bad thing, it does help to remember the things that we do have. However that gratitude shouldn’t be used to make someone feel guilty, that their feelings are less valid because there is someone who has it worse than them. After all, telling someone to be happy because someone has it worse is like telling someone to be sad because there is someone who has it better.
Are you sick of being grateful too?
Do you think the idea of gratitude has been overdone?
Linking up with Kirsty for I must confess!
Sometimes you just have to let it out. Hugs to you!!
YES! Totally agree. I can be truly grateful for my family yet crave time away from them. Then I feel guilty because I’m supposed to be constantly grateful. GRRRRRRRRR.
You hit the nail on the head with how I’m feeling today Tegan! Sometimes I don’t want to ‘think of the positive’ and be grateful, and thats ok. Sometimes I just want to vent about the shitty things and be a bit unhappy with life, and thats ok too. I’ll be grateful tomorrow 😉
YES and massive hugs!! As you know I recently posted about my health issues, not for a pity party but to keep everyone in the loop so they could appreciate why I wasn’t able to come to the party 100% for the time being. While most were supportive and managed to get where I was coming from, I also received the whole I should be more grateful thing and I believe one person actually pointed out how much worse they had it but you wouldn’t see them whinging.
I think gratitude has an important place in our lives – for me it gives me perspective so I can appreciate all that I have. Having said that, it should not be used to force someone to feel guilt for not being totally happy or content 100% of the time.
Proud of you for confessing…. you are allowed to whine sometimes, you are allowed to feel bad for yourself sometimes. Please don’t feel guilty about not being happy with what you have sometimes. xoxo
Love this post. People can shove their platitudes where the sun does not shine. Relentlessly positive people are just minimising, ill mannered and passive aggressive. Horrible folk. I’d rather have someone who was empathetic and negative any day of the week.
Totally correct – I spent so much time beating myself up that I had nothing to be sad about, I don’t need anyone else preaching to me about it. Thankfully, I seem to have chosen my friends carefully, because it is not something I come up against very often. Anyone that does come out with that crap gets ejected from my life.
It was like you were writing how I feel sometimes, so good to know I’m not the only one!
I am grateful. My father committed suicide when I was 10 and I vividly recall the devastation he and the family went through. We were taught to hide tablets and possible ligatures as suicide attempts were commonplace. I am grateful that time is over and that I have a lovely, stable home life for my children. I am grateful that I can tell them, truthfully how lucky they are. Gratitude is an important part of my life as I know how painful mental illness can be. A very powerful, thought provoking post. Thank you.
Sometimes no matter how “good” we have it, it’s ok to stamp our foot and say everything’s not ok.
Totally get this, yes I am lucky compared to some but I am damned unlucky compared to many more others. Gratitude is misused just to make people shut up and stop voicing their anger fear or worry, in fact its really bad for your mental health because it stops you venting and exorcising your inner demons, its just another con by those at the top to justify why those lower down should stay there.
There is so much in this world we should be grateful for but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t want for more.
Shouldn’t we strive to be the best we can be? To have the best that we can have? To give the best that we can give?
Maybe you don’t need to be grateful for it, maybe you earned every bit of it.
Not having suffered depression is something I can be grateful for but “living with” depression is a fight my family knows. I feel for you and know that your battle is as real and debilitating as any physical ailment.
You deserve every happiness that comes your way.