"Other People Have It Worse Than You Do."

"Other People Have It Worse Than You Do."

Rather than making others feel guilty about their feelings, start supporting those who need it.
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“You have nothing to be sad about, people have it so much worse than you do.” I have heard this statement far too many times and I think it’s time to emphasize just how hurtful and wrong it is.

First, let us take the concept of “people have it worse than you do” and apply it to another, pretty graphic situation. Two people just broke their legs in a soccer accident. However, one person managed to fracture their leg in three places while the other only fractured theirs in two places. Technically, Person A has it worse, so are you telling me Person B has no right to complain about their pain and suffering? I apologize for the disturbing example, but hopefully, it gets the message across. Technically, someone will always have it worse than you, but this does not, and I repeat, does NOT mean that you should feel guilty about being upset over your own circumstances.

You don’t always know what someone may be going through because many feel pressured to hide their problems. Just because the person seems to have a “perfect” life doesn’t mean that they aren’t struggling with something they are afraid to mention. It’s very possible that they have a personal issue. I mean, can you blame someone for not opening up? Society has become too damn judgmental and, in turn, has created a threatening and intimidating environment for those who need a helping hand.

For me, personally, it took years and years of effort to break the cycle of bottling up everything that was bothering me until I couldn’t handle it anymore. I cannot stress enough how detrimental this is to someone’s mental health. Before you go and tell someone they shouldn’t be upset, try to remember that you don’t know what happens behind closed doors.

Depression is cruel. I don’t know where the misconception that depression is “just a phase” came from, but it’s about time we end it. Biologically, depression occurs when there is a chemical imbalance or when an individual has a smaller hippocampus than others in the brain. With new research being conducted every day, I’m sure there is an abundance of other biological reasons as well, but for now, these are the most two well known. What happens in the brain is out of a person’s control, so telling someone to “cheer up” or to “just snap out of it” can actually be impossible to accomplish. Depression can affect absolutely anyone; the disease does not discriminate. It doesn’t matter if someone has good grades, a healthy family life, a happy relationship, or whatever else you can think of.

Depression, in my opinion, is one of the most brutal conditions because its victims are vulnerable and unable to prevent it from happening. Imagine waking up and immediately dreading having to get out of bed because you are so fatigued. Everything that once excited you has now lost its luster, further sending you into a melancholy state. As each day passes without feeling any better, you begin to lose hope that you’ll ever be able to pick yourself up. If you really want someone to feel better, try being sensitive and caring. Try offering nonjudgmental support. Try to end the stigma that causes depressed people to feel ashamed of their condition. Stop telling them that others have it worse because you are severely wounding their recovery processes.

So, next time you're about to tell someone that they have no reason to be upset, please consider the damage you will be causing.

Cover Image Credit: The Brooklyn Reader

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To All The Nurses In The Making

We tell ourselves that one day it'll all pay off, but will it actually?
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I bet you’re taking a break from studying right now just to read this, aren’t you? Either at the library with friends or in your dorm room. Wherever you may be, you never get the chance to put your books down, at least that’s how it feels to most of us. It sucks feeling like you’ve chosen the hardest major in the world, especially when you see other students barely spending any time studying or doing school work. The exclamation “You’re still here!” is an all too frequent expression from fellow students after recognizing that you’ve spent 10-plus hours in the library. At first it didn’t seem so bad and you told yourself, “This isn’t so difficult, I can handle it,” but fast-forward a few months and you’re questioning if this is really what you want to do with your life.

You can’t keep track of the amount of mental breakdowns you’ve had, how much coffee you’ve consumed, or how many times you’ve called your mom to tell her that you’re dropping out. Nursing is no joke. Half the time it makes you want to go back and change your major, and the other half reminds you why you want to do this, and that is what gets you through it. The thing about being a nursing major is that despite all the difficult exams, labs and overwhelming hours of studying you do, you know that someday you might be the reason someone lives, and you can’t give up on that purpose. We all have our own reasons why we chose nursing -- everyone in your family is a nurse, it’s something you’ve always wanted to do, you’re good at it, or like me, you want to give back to what was given to you. Regardless of what your reasoning is, we all take the same classes, deal with the same professors, and we all have our moments.

I’ve found that groups of students in the same nursing program are like a big family who are unconditionally supportive of each other and offer advice when it’s needed the most. We think that every other college student around us has it so easy, but we know that is not necessarily true. Every major can prove difficult; we’re just a little harder on ourselves. Whenever you feel overwhelmed with your school work and you want to give up, give yourself a minute to imagine where you’ll be in five years -- somewhere in a hospital, taking vitals, and explaining to a patient that everything will be OK. Everything will be worth what we are going through to get to that exact moment.

Remember that the stress and worry about not getting at least a B+ on your anatomy exam is just a small blip of time in our journey; the hours and dedication suck, and it’s those moments that weed us out. Even our advisors tell us that it’s not easy, and they remind us to come up with a back-up plan. Well, I say that if you truly want to be a nurse one day, you must put in your dedication and hard work, study your ass off, stay organized, and you WILL become the nurse you’ve always wanted to be. Don’t let someone discourage you when they relent about how hard nursing is. Take it as motivation to show them that yeah, it is hard, but you know what, I made it through.

With everything you do, give 110 percent and never give up on yourself. If nursing is something that you can see yourself doing for the rest of your life, stick with it and remember the lives you will be impacting someday.

SEE ALSO: Why Nursing School Is Different Than Any Other Major

Cover Image Credit: Kaylee O'Neal

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How I Used This Summer To Teach Myself Self-Love

Summers are usually for vacations in Paris, concert festivals with friends, and once in the lifetime opportunities, but this year, I decided to love myself.

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This summer was my first summer home from my first year of college which was pretty rough. My first semester of college included me living under the shadow of an emotionally-abusive boyfriend and losing my dad and the second semester of college was me trying to get out of that shadow and being able to cope with the passing of my dad. I did not think I would even make it to the summer in one piece because of how much heartbreak and betrayal I went through. I thought college was supposed to be where you found yourself and live the best years of your life.

I was completely wrong about that, and I knew that was why this summer, I had to use it to find myself once and for all.

It was hard because I did not know what I wanted. All through my first year of college, I had friends and family in my ear telling me what I should and should not do. They controlled my actions towards things and even though I initially thought that that was the best for me, deep down I knew that that was not the person I wanted to be.

The first thing I did this summer was get a job. I had jobs back in school, but I wanted to try something new and more serious. I got a job and learned leadership skills and how to be on my own. I refused to let myself call out for friends or for 'being sick' and become much more independent by landing a serious employment opportunity. I was not about to throw it out for other people because I knew to have something to do was what was best for me.

I then kept away from a lot of my first-year college friends. I would get calls every other day asking if I wanted to go out on late nights, but I declined them all. The first reason for declining them was because of the fact that I did have work in the morning and going out at midnight was not good when you have work at eight. The second reason was that I did not want to be part of that crowd. People used this summer to drink, do drugs, and party, and I knew that hanging out at midnight meant doing just that when there is nothing else to do in my town, but drugs and alcohol. I did not want any distractions from what mattered and I wanted my mind to be free of anything that can alter it so I stayed away. I did not want to be peer pressured and come back under my friends' control so I kept declining until the invites were no more.

Throughout the summer, I ended up making new friends who would let me sit and talk to them about anything and everything and rant to them when I needed to. I am a person who likes to vent and because I had no one to listen to me before, it was all bubbling up inside me. These new friends listened until the end and gave me the best advice. They never told me to do something, they advised me and that was a complete change. I was starting to be able to make decisions for myself.

The last thing I did this summer was completely getting rid of anything that was not me. This includes clothes, values I adopted from other people, and goals. Some things I did not want to do but other people wanted me to do. I had become a puppet in people's games and all I wanted to do was fit in. However, I realized that you did not have to fit into people's mold and there are other people out there that value the same things you do without you having to change what you believe in and what you strive for. I started researching and finding out about organizations that fit my aspirations and I was blessed to be chosen to be a part of all of them.

This summer began to be filled with negativity but now it is all positive as I start my second year in college. I had to cut off everything bad and find my purpose without the control of others and now I am truly happy with myself and all the blessing I have this upcoming year.

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