Beyond Blue

Beyond Blue

Whining Welcome on Beyond Blue!

Thanks to Reader “?” (formerly known as Liz … are you related to Prince?) who posted this comment on the message board of my “The Carnival of Depression and Bipolar Disorder“:

I went to Liz Spikol’s site [by the way, I will be interviewing Liz in September for my “How Do You Move Beyond Blue?” series] and could see that it could offer some support avenues. Unfortunately for me, the comment by Dr. Ellis that “neurosis is just a high-class name for whining” caused me to pause. Many people are sensitive to the “whiny” issue and are very guarded about what they share in the “real” world. It is such a relief to come here and try to put perspective to one’s “neurotic” self. For me, after I post, I am embarrassed at how pathetic I sound on paper….whiny. But inside my brain the whole pain and thought process gets very intense and the struggle seems to have no end. There is comfort in the fact that others know what the pain is and some have the same questions and some have ideas that might help. I realize that when I first visited this site I HAD to know that I was not alone. Sometimes now I am able to look for more and sometimes not. I just know that you are all there and I do pray for you. I even use my pain AND any joy as a prayer. Again, thank you.


Dear “?,”
I would have written to you long ago had I known your e-mail address to say this: I truly enjoy your comments. I find them engaging, sincere, enlightening, honest, interesting, and so so sincere. I don’t think you are whining, but then again, I have been called a whiner myself (go check out the message board of my “I, Too, Have a Dream” post, where you’ll find a few more adjectives next to my name).

I want Beyond Blue to be a place where people are comfortable “whining” (if the world sees it that way). To me, telling the truth is more important, even if it’s ugly, than covering up a lie. If a Beyond Blue reader is so depressed that she wishes she were dead, I hope that she says that! Because chances are, a good number of us feel the same way, and we breathe a sigh of relief whenever someone else says it.
In fact, even today, at my doctor’s appointment, I described to her my “Relapse: The Waiting Place” post, where I talk about becoming envious of people with terminal illnesses and elderly people. You know what she said?
“You don’t know how many times I’ve heard that … people so desperate that they only wish to die in a respectable, natural way.”
Is that whining? To many ears, yes. “If you don’t have anything good to say, don’t say it” I was told repeatedly as a kid. Several friends have told me that by writing “I am mentally ill,” that I am trapping my psyche in sick mode, that I am preventing my own healing. That if I say positive words, and try my best to think positive thoughts, even if I’m not feeling them, that they will change my reality.
I see it differently. To me, being honest is reporting the symptoms. And how are you supposed to get better if you can’t name the problem? Maybe I’m brainwashed by twelve-step programs, but the beginning point for me hass always been admitting powerlessness. And how that has freed me!
I haven’t read much of Dr. Ellis, so I don’t know how he used that phrase “neurosis is high-class whining.” But if he means it in the way I hear it—that we are a bunch of pansies for describing our pain, I think he is the one with the more severe neurosis.
Please, feel free to whine away here on Beyond Blue.

  • Jo

    Hello Beyond Blue,
    So many years, giving, raising up, care-taking and it took being asked for a divorce by my third terminally husband to find love for myself. I had nothing else to give. I couldn’t believe after we discovered his illness and after nine years of being back in nursing, mothering, wiving and all illness demands, he wanted a divorce! However, he insisted for four months. I had already been widowed twice!
    After acceptance of what seemed drastic foolishness on his part, pain, disbelief, the “what will I do now’s” … I discovered ME. Then he no longer wanted to divorce, but to begin again. However, I could not unring my bell. I thanked him for helping me see how I had only been giving myself away for so long, I was allowing others to do the same. I had changed! Wow, I could see me for the first time.
    I discovered things I liked and enjoyed: smells, colors, textures, sounds, quiet and even being with me. I had never known such relief, joy and I was proud to know me. My prayers and concern, of course, never left for my ex and I love him as a family member today. Nonetheless, I welcome ME to each day curious to see what I might do. Often, I would like to do better or more, but I certainly give myself a giggle or two. I am maybe on the same path, but I now can see the landscape.
    I can now give selflessly, because I have learned NOT to give me away. Thanks, Beyond Blue for your support, encouragement and enlightenment. We all need all the friends we find upon our journey. I am glad you have been part of mine.
    Warmly, Jo

  • Margaret

    Maybe that od saying’Physician, heal thyself’ is appropriate here. I say you’re righy on when you say that honesty equaling whining is indicative of a serious neurosis! There is a difference between telling it like ir is and adopting a ‘Poor, poor piyigul ne personna. Just like no other social ill (slavery, civil rights, child abuse) have never been helped by the ‘secrecy’ factor that nost of us were raised to honor, mental illness issues won’t ever be able to claim their rightful place in the world of medicine if those of us who lve it won’t describe it with candor. In order for more treatment options to materialize, mental ilness must be allowed to open the closet door! If others interpret that as ‘whining, refer back to your “They Just Don’t Get It” post. If we won’t air the pain, they NEVER will, which means research and mdication debelopment will suffer. talk about a vicious Circle!!

  • Anthony Blackwood

    How can someone be a Dr. & have the insensitive, unempathetic, & judgemntal nerve to call neurosis whining. What a jerk.

Previous Posts

Seven Ways to Get Over an Infatuation
“Bewitched, bothered, and bewildered am I” wrote US songwriter Lorenz Hart about the feeling of infatuation. It’s blissful and euphoric, as we all know. But it’s also addicting, messy and blinding. Without careful monitoring, its wild ...

posted 12:46:43pm Feb. 19, 2014 | read full post »

When Faith Turns Neurotic
When does reciting scripture become a symptom of neurosis? Or praying the rosary an unhealthy compulsion? Not until I had the Book of Psalms practically memorized as a young girl did I learn that words and acts of faith can morph into desperate ...

posted 10:37:13am Jan. 14, 2014 | read full post »

How to Handle Negative People
One of my mom’s best pieces of advice: “Hang with the winners.” This holds true in support groups (stick with the people who have the most sobriety), in college (find the peeps with good study habits), and in your workplace (stay away from ...

posted 10:32:10am Jan. 14, 2014 | read full post »

8 Coping Strategies for the Holidays
For people prone to depression and anxiety – i.e. human beings – the holidays invite countless possibility to get sucked into negative and catastrophic thinking. You take the basic stressed-out individual and you increase her to-do list by a ...

posted 9:30:12am Nov. 21, 2013 | read full post »

Can I Say I’m a Son or Daughter of Christ and Suffer From Depression?
In 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, we read: “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” What if we aren’t glad, we aren’t capable of rejoicing, and even prayer ...

posted 10:56:04am Oct. 29, 2013 | read full post »


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.