How Memories May Contribute to Depression

How Memories May Contribute to Depression

Memories can impact us in one of two ways–either by making us feel warm and fuzzy inside when we think of something positive, or making us feel sad and upset when we remember something negative. For everyone, both kinds of memories come and go, but some people find it harder to overcome painful experiences. Whatever is the case for you, treatment is available to help you overcome your struggles.

Positive Memories Causing Depression

One might not expect a happy memory to lead to depression, but often times that is the case. Chasing a memory of something so fantastic can make people feel like the present is lacking. Consider the following scenarios:

  • Husband/wife memories: For many divorcees, the first few years after divorce can be extremely rough. Relearning how to be on your own again can be difficult to cope with. When it comes to doing certain things that you used to do as a pair, feelings of what you are missing out on now can cause depression. For example, hosting Thanksgiving dinner for the first time without your significant other can conjure memories of what it used to be like before the divorce. The positive memories of those moments can become darker when the situation changes and you mourn the loss of what used to be.
  • Death of a loved one: If you have lost someone you love, you may look back and celebrate all your happy memories with that person to help you get through the hard times. While this sometimes helps, other times it can make people feel angry and/or sad that their loved one is no longer around to make more happy memories.

These problems are serious and can easily lead to depression.

Negative Memories Causing Depression

Perhaps this situation is a bit more expected, but negative memories can easily cause depression, as resentment and anger can quickly set in. Ignoring these feelings can make for a depressive state, especially in the following situations:

  • Abandonment: Whether you are a child, significant other, parent or sibling, you may have experienced abandonment at some point in your life. The emotions surrounding such a painful experience can make it difficult to grasp what is going on in real life, which constantly encourages people to flash back to their pain. The emotions you felt after the fact can easily tie into those memories, creating a state of depression.
  • Abuse: Having experienced abuse in the past, you may have vivid memories of what it was like during the times you were hurt. These feelings can be triggered by anything, which brings you right back to the time when it occurred. Replaying these memories and being triggered by other things can make you feel at a loss and eventually lead to depression.

All sorts of memories can make a person feel depressed, but each instance is unique. Someone who relives positive and negative memories might occasionally have varied reactions, but other people might be more susceptible to developing depression as a result.

Help Treating Depression

Call our toll-free, 24 hour helpline right now to get the help you need to start feeling better. Don’t spend one more day being depressed. Call us today and learn to deal with your past.