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druggedonsurvival

druggedonsurvival

Student
Feb 8, 2024
189
They say that depression skews our perspective, but just because we have a different perspective as people with depression doesn't mean that it's wrong. If we are to give credence to the chemical imbalance theory of depression, this point is the same. Maybe our brains have a different chemical composition than the neurotypical brain, but does that mean it is necessarily "imbalanced?" No, it's just different.

Perhaps people with depression simply have the ability to comprehend existence in a way that most "normal" people cannot. This is what the theory of "depressive realism" purports. We see reality, we see life for what it truly is... empty, full of suffering, etc. Thus suicide is the greatest rebellion against the mainstream, a reminder to society that life is not really so great, and indeed, is not really worth living.

I've been thinking about this recently because I have felt less of a desire to ctb, and I suspect that it may be a result of this new medication I'm on. Rather than give me a sense of relief, it makes me feel as though I'm being fooled into an empty existence through pacification (i.e., medication). It's stripping away my ability to see my life as it truly is. Maybe one day I will stop taking all my meds, to reaffirm what my mind in its most natural state perceives of my life.
 
LuvMeMusic

LuvMeMusic

Music to drown out the noise
Jan 24, 2024
99
Perhaps people with depression simply have the ability to comprehend existence in a way that most "normal" people cannot. This is what the theory of "depressive realism" purports.
If I'm not mistaken, depressive realism has been disproven some time ago. There are plenty of studies that prove that depressed people don't "see the truth" or anything like that. Their perception is skewed, especially their perception of themselves.
 
druggedonsurvival

druggedonsurvival

Student
Feb 8, 2024
189
If I'm not mistaken, depressive realism has been disproven some time ago. There are plenty of studies that prove that depressed people don't "see the truth" or anything like that. Their perception is skewed, especially their perception of themselves.
Presumably these studies have been done by people who are not depressed, people who have the authority to determine what is "the truth." There is no one truth, just different perspectives. Maybe as a scientific theory depressive realism has no merit, but I at least dispute the idea that the perception of people with depression is "wrong." It is wrong only because society has deemed it so, a societal construction just like gender norms.
 
LuvMeMusic

LuvMeMusic

Music to drown out the noise
Jan 24, 2024
99
Presumably these studies have been done by people who are not depressed, people who have the authority to determine what is "the truth." There is no one truth, just different perspectives. Maybe as a scientific theory depressive realism has no merit, but I at least dispute the idea that the perception of people with depression is "wrong." It is wrong only because society has deemed it so, a societal construction just like gender norms.
It doesn't matter whether the people conducting the experiment are depressed or not. Depressed individuals have a skewed perception. That's a scientific fact, not an opinion. One study found that they tend to perceive other people in a more "objective" way, but perceive themselves in a very negative way. E.g. they complete a task better than most other people, but report that they believe they did it worse.
 
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EvisceratedJester

EvisceratedJester

The drip finally stops
Oct 21, 2023
890
This feels more like you are kind of rationalizing and romanticizing of your own mental illness, but that's just my personal view on the matter. Depression in of itself doesn't necessarily lead one to view life in a pessimistic manner. There are plenty of people with depression who don't hold the views that you do, so the "depression realism" theory doesn't make much sense to me. Also, life is complex. There are good and bad aspects to it, as is the case with most things. Viewing it for only it's negative aspects has nothing to do with depression or even mental illness in general. Plenty of "normal" people also hold similar views.
 
druggedonsurvival

druggedonsurvival

Student
Feb 8, 2024
189
This feels more like you are kind of rationalizing and romanticizing of your own mental illness, but that's just my personal view on the matter. Depression in of itself doesn't necessarily lead one to view life in a pessimistic manner. There are plenty of people with depression who don't hold the views that you do, so the "depression realism" theory doesn't make much sense to me. Also, life is complex. There are good and bad aspects to it, as is the case with most things. Viewing it for only it's negative aspects has nothing to do with depression or even mental illness in general. Plenty of "normal" people also hold similar views.
Yes, you're right. I guess I'm arguing for the rationality of pessimism more than anything, which could be romanticizing my depression. But I am both a pessimist and depressed so it can be hard to separate one from the other.
It doesn't matter whether the people conducting the experiment are depressed or not. Depressed individuals have a skewed perception. That's a scientific fact, not an opinion. One study found that they tend to perceive other people in a more "objective" way, but perceive themselves in a very negative way. E.g. they complete a task better than most other people, but report that they believe they did it worse.
Again, that merely proves that their thinking is different, not that it is right or wrong. That is not a provable thing, and is a question better addressed by philosophy than science. Fundamentally, I am arguing that rationality and irrationality are concepts subject to the tyranny of scientific thinking, and consequently, if we are to challenge that tyranny we may suggest that a depressed individual's self-perception is neither right nor wrong, neither rational nor irrational, but rather it just is. In other words, epistemological nihilism. If you were to argue that I only believe this because I want to justify my own perspective, you'd probably be right. But we're all biased as such, and that's sort of my point. There is no universal truth, only what we have been conditioned to perceive as the truth (hence the nullity of all knowledge).

I guess this sort of contradicts what I suggested in the title, but whatever, it's a better argument.
 
LuvMeMusic

LuvMeMusic

Music to drown out the noise
Jan 24, 2024
99
Again, that merely proves that their thinking is different, not that it is right or wrong.
It does prove precisely that. Their thinking is "wrong".
That is not a provable thing, and is a question better addressed by philosophy than science.
No, it very much is a provable thing and has been proven. Philosophy really doesn't matter in this context. Science says it's that way, so it is. Science says that the apple falls because of gravity. Could that be incorrect? Certainly, but it doesn't matter at all. You just have to accept it as a fact, as much as you may dislike it.

Fundamentally, I am arguing that rationality and irrationality are concepts subject to the tyranny of scientific thinking, and consequently, if we are to challenge that tyranny we may suggest that a depressed individual's self-perception is neither right nor wrong, neither rational nor irrational, but rather it just is.
I don't understand what this is supposed to mean. Are you saying that science is wrong because you don't like what it says? There is no "tyranny of scientific thinking". Facts are facts. It's that simple.
But we're all biased as such, and that's sort of my point. There is no universal truth, only what we have been conditioned to perceive as the truth (hence the nullity of all knowledge).
This is one of those arguments that everyone comes up with at some point. It doesn't matter. It's that simple. Sure, everything we think we know may be wrong, but does that matter? It's been working thus far, so it's probably correct. The universal truth is "science". You just have to accept it, even if you don't like it. As you said yourself, you're most likely only saying this because you want to justify your own perspective. I doubt anyone would like to be told that they don't perceive reality the way it is. Depressed people have a measurably skewed perception. It's not just a perspective thing.
 
druggedonsurvival

druggedonsurvival

Student
Feb 8, 2024
189
It does prove precisely that. Their thinking is "wrong".

No, it very much is a provable thing and has been proven. Philosophy really doesn't matter in this context. Science says it's that way, so it is. Science says that the apple falls because of gravity. Could that be incorrect? Certainly, but it doesn't matter at all. You just have to accept it as a fact, as much as you may dislike it.


I don't understand what this is supposed to mean. Are you saying that science is wrong because you don't like what it says? There is no "tyranny of scientific thinking". Facts are facts. It's that simple.

This is one of those arguments that everyone comes up with at some point. It doesn't matter. It's that simple. Sure, everything we think we know may be wrong, but does that matter? It's been working thus far, so it's probably correct. The universal truth is "science". You just have to accept it, even if you don't like it. As you said yourself, you're most likely only saying this because you want to justify your own perspective. I doubt anyone would like to be told that they don't perceive reality the way it is. Depressed people have a measurably skewed perception. It's not just a perspective thing.
I don't have to accept anything as fact; I will accept whatever I accept as fact because of how I have been conditioned from the environment in which I grew up. For example, I trust science with most everything else. So does everybody else, but it is meaningless. Your faith in science is a product of your upbringing being an environment which values science. I do as well, but I recognize that everything I believe to be true, I only believe because I have been conditioned to do so. In other words, we have no choice in what we believe so it doesn't really matter. You may believe that trusting scientific knowledge makes sense because it is practical. In fact, I agree with this, but it doesn't make my point any less true.

Moreover, you are trying to argue against a nihilist from a standpoint of value (in science as universal truth), which is an exercise in futility. I guess I'm doing the inverse (reverse?). In any case, I don't think either of our views are compatible enough for this debate to really go anywhere.
 
LuvMeMusic

LuvMeMusic

Music to drown out the noise
Jan 24, 2024
99
I don't have to accept anything as fact; I will accept whatever I accept as fact because of how I have been conditioned from the environment in which I grew up. For example, I trust science with most everything else. So does everybody else, but it is meaningless. Your faith in science is a product of your upbringing being an environment which values science. I do as well, but I recognize that everything I believe to be true, I only believe because I have been conditioned to do so. In other words, we have no choice in what we believe so it doesn't really matter. You may believe that trusting scientific knowledge makes sense because it is practical. In fact, I agree with this, but it doesn't make my point any less true.

Moreover, you are trying to argue against a nihilist from a standpoint of value (in science as universal truth), which is an exercise in futility. I guess I'm doing the inverse (reverse?). In any case, I don't think either of our views are compatible enough for this debate to really go anywhere.
I don't see how any of this matters. I corrected you, explained the facts. That's all there is to it. No, depressed people don't have a "better" perception of reality. At most, they have a "worse" perception. It's a mental illness, after all, and one of the diagnostic criteria is "Feeling worthless or excessive/inappropriate guilt". That obviously doesn't apply to everyone with depression, but to the vast majority.
 
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Alexei_Kirillov

Alexei_Kirillov

Already half-crushed to death
Mar 9, 2024
196
@druggedonsurvival I would agree that the way depressed people view the world is not inherently "wrong."

We may be affected by "chemicals" in our brain, but so is everyone else. They're also drugged by the biological self-preservation instinct, which depressed people tend to see for what it is (ie. a Sisyphean struggle). I don't think studies showing that depressed people tend to underevaluate their own performance means their entire worldview is incorrect; it most likely just means that people with self-esteem problems have...well, self-esteem problems.
 
LuvMeMusic

LuvMeMusic

Music to drown out the noise
Jan 24, 2024
99
They're also drugged by the biological self-preservation instinct, which depressed people tend to see for what it is (ie. a Sisyphean struggle).
Pretty much everyone sees it the same though. Your body is obviously trying to keep you alive under all circumstances. Nobody is "drugged" by anything. Healthy and ill people alike have the same self-preservation instinct.

I don't think studies showing that depressed people tend to underevaluate their own performance means their entire worldview is incorrect; it most likely just means that people with self-esteem problems have...well, self-esteem problems.
It doesn't mean their worldview is incorrect. It means they don't "see the truth" or whatever. You tend to see this opinion a lot. "Depressed people see the truth", "Depressed people are more realistic", etc. More or less what druggedonsurvival said.
 
sserafim

sserafim

머리 아프다
Sep 13, 2023
6,952
Whose thinking is right then? Who sees the truth, and what is it? Is life neutral, neither positive nor negative?
 
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F

Forever Sleep

Earned it we have...
May 4, 2022
7,543
I think a characteristic of depression is that things a person once used to find joy in, no longer interests them. So- that is an altered perspective. Not to say it's wrong necessarily but- does it mean they were wrong to begin with? I doubt it. I'm not so sure that having depression is 'seeing the light' or truth as it were.

That said, I'm not 100% convinced it can always be cured. If it's reliant on circumstances and a person can't realistically change their circumstances- I don't see how it can be cured. It certainly doesn't feel an unreasonable reaction to the lives we are pretty much forced to live.

But- is a person who has a supportive family, reasonable wealth, a job and lifestyle they get fulfilment from, delusional for liking- even loving life? No- surely not. Why would they be depressed?

I imagine most people's depressions are triggered by unpleasant events. People usually do have things they are depressed about. That said- I've known a very positive person develop it as a side effect to a change in medication so- I'd say it can also come about out of the blue.

I don't think it's all that more realistic though than someone who is annoyingly positive. It's maybe just about tolerance to irritants and unpleasant things offset by how much joy we experience. You can't tell someone they're wrong to like chocolate ice cream. Our own realities are very personal to us.
 
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ijustwishtodie

ijustwishtodie

death will be my ultimate bliss
Oct 29, 2023
2,298
I think that some depressed people see the world for what it is but of course this depends on how they got the depression to begin with. It could be that they are depressed because they know what the world is like, not that they know what the world is like because they are depressed.

Though, I do believe that elements of what depressed people say is correct. Life is far more negative than positive and just because this isn't the majority view doesn't make this incorrect. Religion has shown that the majority view on things shouldn't always be trusted or perceived to be correct
 
Darkover

Darkover

Illuminated
Jul 29, 2021
3,700
depressed people see life for what it's worth which is not much they know that life is going to end one day and that there is no coming back from death, while the normies believe in a higher power and the afterlife with god, hence why they are not depressed because they believe in delusions
 
lemonbunny

lemonbunny

daydreaming the pain away ☆.。.:*・°
Sep 9, 2023
133
There is no universal truth, only what we have been conditioned to perceive as the truth (hence the nullity of all knowledge).

I guess this sort of contradicts what I suggested in the title, but whatever, it's a better argument.
it does. im confused as to what your original post's point is, then, if you don't have any authority to dictate what reality is, either.
 
druggedonsurvival

druggedonsurvival

Student
Feb 8, 2024
189
it does. im confused as to what your original post's point is, then, if you don't have any authority to dictate what reality is, either.
I think after seeing the replies by LuvMeMusic I realized that my original post was written more out of emotion than anything else. I came to that (later) conclusion after thinking about my assertion more analytically and determining what actually made sense to me. In other words, now that I think about it more carefully, I don't think that people with depression see life more realistically than others, and anyway, all worldviews are essentially the product of chance/circumstance. It was just a sentiment that I figured people on this forum might relate to. But I was wrong to make that argument without thinking critically about it.
Whose thinking is right then? Who sees the truth, and what is it? Is life neutral, neither positive nor negative?
It is neutral I suppose, since "right" and "wrong" are human constructions (i.e., there is no objective way of arriving at a correct answer). Life is how we end up seeing it, which may happen to be positive or it may happen to be negative. Truth is ultimately unattainable.
 
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Angst Filled Fuck Up

Angst Filled Fuck Up

Visionary
Sep 9, 2018
2,630
We're often infused with fake optimism, especially when we're young and just coming up. We're subtly lied to by the world at large and made to believe that life is inherently good/beautiful/worth the struggle etc. The implication is that it's good by default. And maybe it is for some. But in terms of how I see it, I think it's more like a tightrope walk over a pile of shit - if you're lucky you won't fall in, but more than likely, you will. Your chances of being saddled with horrific life events like poor health, loneliness, debt, addiction, depression, heartbreak, loss, etc are enormous. Many people never (adequately) recover from these setbacks.

In my own life, I've dealt with a number of problems that are multi layered and probably never going away. If a person is lucky enough to be naturally happy go lucky and not have anything too hellish happen to them over the course of their time on Earth, they really are the exception. You also need exceptional resilience just to make it through life's tribulations in general, I feel.

For me at least, depression has always felt like reality, and been an integral part of my baseline functioning.
 
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Lookingtoflyfree

Lookingtoflyfree

Student
Jan 11, 2024
142
depressed people see life for what it's worth which is not much they know that life is going to end one day and that there is no coming back from death, while the normies believe in a higher power and the afterlife with god, hence why they are not depressed because they believe in delusions
THIS - they believe in and are addicted to anything that gives them a delusion (sex, love, power, religion, drugs).

The rest of us who are beyond all that may not be depressed - we're realists. I've never been more rational or logical in my entire life. I see the reality of what the world is like with climate catastrophe and economic devastation. Opting out of the reality is the rational choice.
 
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surroundedbydemons

surroundedbydemons

Student
Mar 6, 2024
172
(this sounds offensive and judgemental...)

I think you are trying to justify your depression and feel better about yourself because you "see the reality and do what normal people cannot."


Quoting LuvMeMusic
If I'm not mistaken, depressive realism has been disproven some time ago. There are plenty of studies that prove that depressed people don't "see the truth" or anything like that. Their perception is skewed, especially their perception of themselves.

It's understandable to wonder why the world seems negative, but focusing solely on the negatives might not provide a complete picture.
If you were objective in your view, would you be able to focus on the positive things around you and disregard the negative? What do you think?
(Not in the sense of toxic positivity, but objective positivity...)
 
sserafim

sserafim

머리 아프다
Sep 13, 2023
6,952
Personally I see pro lifers perspectives as skewed. Depressive realism puts a *realistic* perspective on everything.
I agree. Pro-lifers are deluded by hopium and copium. They believe that life is paradise and that it's all full of sunshine and rainbows. However, the reality is that life is suffering and they're cherry-picking the positives while discounting the negatives. What kind of Asian are you btw? I'm Chinese. I wasn't gonna mention or talk about how I'm Asian on here, but it kind of just happened
 
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A

Argo

Specialist
May 19, 2018
349
Presumably these studies have been done by people who are not depressed, people who have the authority to determine what is "the truth." There is no one truth, just different perspectives.

I've never thought of that but that's such a brilliant response to the counter-evidence. It's also hilarious to imagine suicidally depressed scientists running the most important study on depression ever in order to eliminate bias.
 
asian.neet

asian.neet

Experienced
Oct 13, 2023
298
I agree. Pro-lifers are deluded by hopium and copium. They believe that life is paradise and that it's all full of sunshine and rainbows. However, the reality is that life is suffering and they're cherry-picking the positives while discounting the negatives. What kind of Asian are you btw? I'm Chinese. I wasn't gonna mention or talk about how I'm Asian on here, but it kind of just happened
Chinese as well. Ye my username gave it away but yeah. U got the asian parenting experience?
 
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untothedepths

untothedepths

I am falling I am fading I have lost it all
Mar 20, 2023
228
I don't think depressed people are deluded. If you see what is going on in the world right now, plus talks of more looming war, I think you have to either ignore it and mind your own bubble or stare the situation in the face.
 
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