“Before you diagnose yourself with depression or low self-esteem, first make sure that you are not, in fact, just surrounded by assholes.” —William Gibson
I fell in love with this quote when I first read it. In fact, I liked it so much that I couldn’t stop thinking about it. I am not a person who blames others for my meltdowns and certainly not for my depression.
But, when you remember all the times that you allowed someone’s behavior to put you down and affect your feelings, you start to realize that there might be some truth in it.
Just ask yourself, how many times have you been in a relationship where the other person made you feel like shit, and you were the one who was hurt and depressed in the end?
When you think about it, there are people out there who are assholes. They exist only to bring others down and there’s nothing you can do about it to change them because that’s who they are – it is in their nature, and they might not even be aware of.
If you have people around you that have these 3 characteristics – the problem that you are feeling depressed is not you, but them:
1.Assholes Are Happy With Their Stupidity
Don’t get me wrong, by ‘stupid’ I don’t mean unintelligent. No one can be smart all the times and know everything. I certainly don’t know anything about football or any other sport, except that it is exciting sometimes to watch for a change. But, I don’t go around and teach someone about sport.
Assholes, on the other hand, do that. They are more than happy to dwell gloriously in their stupidity and “teach” others about something that they know nothing about.
2.Assholes Are Obnoxious And Loud
Have you met an asshole that is shy and quiet? Me neither. Most of the assholes I’ve met were not able to hold a proper conversation. They didn’t understand the ‘give’ and ‘take’ that a conversation requires.
They take-over, shout, monologue, and invade your personal space as if the world revolves around them, and they are the only ones that have something interesting to say. They might not be aware they are doing it in the first place, or they may be too aware, and they are doing it on purpose to intimidate others. Not cool.
3.Assholes Are Selfish Bullies
Being selfish is not the same as being self-caring. Having self-respect and being able to take care of yourself, your mental state and emotions, is a great thing.
Assholes, however, are just selfish. They dismiss other’s opinions and values for they care only about their own. They even ridicule other people’s feelings and ideas, only to make themselves feel important as if their ideas and feelings are the only right ones.
So, why do assholes make us feel depressed?
Because some of us are wired to be nice. We are taught from a young age to respect others, to take turns while communicating, to value other people’s opinions, and never to belittle or intimidate others. Nice people empathize with others and always take other’s feelings into consideration. They are calm, and they are never loud when expressing their opinions.
On the other hand, assholes make us feel stupid and gullible for being nice. They see this quality as a flaw and make us question ourselves and our principles.
This leads to shattered self-esteem which further leads to feelings of fatigue, hopelessness, sadness, and depression.
How can you help and heal yourself?
Assholes can be found everywhere: in your school, among your closest friends, your emotional partners, or among family members.
The best you can do is to be honest with yourself and see people’s true colors and not your idealized picture of them. Starting to recognize assholes is the first step to getting your self-esteem back and start the healing process.
Taking action is the second step that you need to take. Even if the asshole is your cousin or your sister, even though you cannot change that fact, you can always take action and remove yourself from their presence, or at least reduce their presence in your life.
Then, start taking care of yourself. Eat well, get enough sleep, get a new hobby… anything that makes you happy. Be strong and love yourself. Don’t let assholes ruin the wonderful relationship that you have with yourself.