Don’t Tell Me to Snap Out of It

If you really care about me, you won’t say that to me. Here’s why:

When you say those four innocent little words, combined in just such a way, I feel like you are blaming me. Accusing me. As if it’s my own fault that I’m suffering. As if all I have to do is just…stop. Believe me, I wish that I could.

When you tell me to “snap out of it,” it means that you want me to stop experiencing what I am experiencing, which I cannot do. And to stop behaving how I am behaving as a result of that experience, which I also cannot do.

Maybe you mean well.

You probably do.

But I don’t hear: “please, stop hurting because I love you.” What I hear is: “You can and should stop this, right now. You are doing this to yourself.”

If I had any choice, I would not be having this happen to me.

I can’t unexperience my experiences. I can’t unfeel my feelings, just as certainly as you can’t unsay what you’ve just said.

Maybe you mean well, but if you are truly looking to help me, please pick a kinder phrase. Try “I love you,” or, “I’m here for you, no matter what.” Now those are some phrases worth saying.


Have you ever been told to “snap out of it”? How did it make you feel?


2 thoughts on “Don’t Tell Me to Snap Out of It

  1. This is the worst thing you can say to someone suffering from depression. To trivialize those feelings is devastating. While the depressed person teeters on the edge of a cliff, the “snap out of it” is a solid shove into oblivion.


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