Holidays can bring depression
Rather than being the “Hap – happiest time of the year”; for many, the holiday season can be the loneliest. Ghosts from the past and nightmares of the present can be very challenging.
There are things you can do to change the looming loneliness, frustration and depression that often comes along this time of year. You do have options.
Take Control, Make decisions
Guard your heart. I am obviously not advocating crude, rude or abusive behavior but it is not your responsibility to appease everyone else so that they can continue to be miserable and push their disgruntled life upon you. I know this is easier said then done but here are some ideas.
Do not feel obligated to associate with others who drag you down even if they are a “friend” or related by blood or marriage.
If you are part of a dysfunctional family and staying away all the time is impossible, you can usually choose to not enter into conflict. I know that in the most challenging of situations this can be difficult. The point I am making is you may need to remain somewhere physically; but remember that, whatever your situation, God wants to take your burdens for you. He is always available to share your troubles if you let Him.
If traveling, you might consider procuring a motel room instead of staying at a relative’s house. Plan activities separate from those who seem to pull you down. Consider maybe spending some time with troublesome family or friends but not as much as usual.
Try to refuse to engage in conflict; either avoid it altogether or walk away if you find yourself in the midst of it.
Consider spending more time than usual with others who are like-minded.
Don’t expect miserable people to become different just because of the holidays. Learn to be polite and pleasant, but keep your heart protected and if necessary, keep your distance. Accept the reality that you can’t force someone to be happy if they have chosen to be miserable.
I know: It’s not that easy
I know that some situations are very, very challenging and you may have read this thinking “yeah right; he doesn’t know MY situation”.
You are right about that. I don’t know your situation. These are just some ideas. If you need more, or if you find yourself at your end, feel free to contact us.
Chaplain Rayphe, Dr.