In life, we all experience hardship, and we all experience grief and times of loneliness or sadness, but never will these experiences and feelings be exactly the same. One person’s depression is never the same as another’s. One person’s experience with abuse is not the same as another’s. There is no comparing one’s situation to someone else’s. This is why Lady Gaga’s Til It Happens To You is my new anthem. For those of you who are not familiar with the song, here are Lady Gaga’s enchanting lyrics:
This song is inspiring to me because I see the hurt that she has felt. The pain is genuine. Her emotions are real. What is most relatable about the song isn’t necessarily the fact that Lady G recognizes the fact that we have all been hurt, but rather where she says, “Tell me what the hell could you know? What could you know?” in response to “...pull it together, you’ll be fine.” I can not begin to explain how exhausting and infuriating it is to have someone come up and tell you to “get over yourself” and “just move on. It’s no big deal.” For me, personally, I’ve always struggled with depression and anxiety, and in recent time of personal tragedy, I have found it to be difficult to keep it together. Telling someone "to get over it," "you're overexaggerating things," or just simply blowing them off because their own ignorance to one's situation keeps them from grasping the hurt that they feel inside makes my blood boil.
If there is someone in your own life who is struggling, whether it be with depression, abuse, insecurities, family problems, etc., it is important to not make them feel like they are “drawing things out” and “over-exaggerating.” It is also important that we not compare our situations, no matter how similar in nature because we all experience things differently. Don’t tell them you understand because you don’t. Don’t pity them. No one should feel as though they are only worth our sympathy. Be empathetic. Put yourself in their shoes. Don’t tell them you wish you understood because guess what? They wouldn’t want others to feel the same pain that they have dealt with. But do make sure they know that you care and that you can feel the pain that they are in, just simply because they, themselves, are in pain.
To those who have experienced hurt, who have experienced loneliness and depression, who have experienced loss, stay strong. No one will ever fully understand your struggle, but there are people who will always care, who will always walk alongside you and see the potential that you hold in you, the smarts you have, the love that is in your heart. Someone somewhere loves you.