I Don’t Care (but I do)

I don’t care….but I do.

Does anyone know what I am talking about? I don’t know if I can describe it properly. It’s sort of contradictory. I want to study vision and eye disease, but I don’t care enough to get involved. I want to learn how to paint, but I can’t be bothered to pull out the paints and try. I want to sleep, but I lie there, awake, thinking of nonsense. I want to keep in touch with friends, but talking to them is too hard. I want to be successful, but I let myself get so distracted by my self loathing. My mind wants me to care, but there is no heart, no passion, nothing behind it, so I can’t do it.


I wasn’t always this way. I used to be motivated to learn, to exercise, to participate in life. It gets harder every year. I want to be creative and learn new things, but I can’t think. Some things I can do. I have to fight myself to do them, but I can. For example, if you give me a task and tell me to follow the instructions, no problem, done, but figuring something out, making something work….that part of my brain has been removed. Or maybe it’s my heart that’s been removed and I just don’t care enough to figure it out. It has been this way for several months now and it is just getting worse. The only way I can think of to describe it is that I don’t care about anything or what happens to me anymore, but that’s obviously not true if I am worrying about it now…..

I’m not sure if this makes sense to me in the end…I’m just thinking out loud.

16 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. JF
    Aug 16, 2014 @ 08:56:34

    If you have depression you must cure it (you need doctor’s help). I had it and my family and my doctor helped me to overcome it. Many years afterwards I live a happy productive life.


    • somberscribbler
      Aug 16, 2014 @ 09:03:49

      I’m glad to hear you were able to turn it around. I’m lucky and have a very supportive family. I’ve been working with doctors, therapy and medication for the last 8 years, but it’s only been getting harder to manage. What was it that made the difference for you?


      • JF
        Aug 16, 2014 @ 12:48:02

        I started writing short stories and articles and only the very first one was not published (but it was a funny case).
        It returned me confidence and I became myself again.

  2. ihstreet
    Aug 16, 2014 @ 10:29:42

    I know the feeling well. And I may be moving beyond it in some ways. I still have problems truly feeling like i’m enjoying things, or mustering the energy to do something. I care, but don’t. There’s one part of my brain that cares…that’s closer to the ‘real’ me and the part that doesn’t is depressive, ruminative, flat.

    It took years to challenge that voice successfully. And that’s the best I can say; keep challenging the negative thinking (writing down the depressive thoughts can help, then writing the beliefs behind that though, the evidence that supports it and then the keys evidence that is counter to the depressive thought and a different, more positive version of the depresssive thought helps (whether you find that alternate thought credible or not is a bit beside the point…it’s an exercise in thinking differently).

    I think scientists especially have especially high BS meters and so anything that seems like a positive, happy voice can’t possibly have much force behind it because it’s not in the tone of science to be that way. And since we’re often consumed by our jobs, the dispassionate science voice is all we hear. But science requires passion too..that I guess we just carry deep down?

    The other thing I would say is creation isn’t easy. And the fact that your’e writing is really good! build on that. I read your blog and it resonates with me.

    As for what helped me: I switched medications (and am now med-free). I started writing, not just about depression, but other things I find fun too eventually. Writing in a notebook helped (my habit lately w/ journaling…write what good happened that day and what good I did in the world, what I learned that day (it can be anything big or small) and what specific areas I could improve upon…just 3-5 items).

    If you’re feeling perfectionist about things (like you can’t because you won’t do it perfectly first time out), try learning about the growth mindset; improvement over time!

    And the last thing I think many depressed people feel, but is not true, is that you are not alone. Common humanity. Mindfulness. Self-kindness (the three components of self-compassion that really have helped me).


    • somberscribbler
      Aug 17, 2014 @ 09:59:21

      Congrats on feeling better and being med-free. That is truly amazing. I hope that will be me some day, but I think it’s ingrained in my genetics and will always be with me. You are so right about the BS meter and the perfectionism. That is definitely me. I’ll try writing down the good things like you suggested. writing seems to make things stick a little more.
      You’re not the first that has mentioned self-compassion to be. I think I’ll do some more reading on this. Thank you. πŸ™‚


  3. Green Embers
    Aug 16, 2014 @ 10:35:21

    I do know exactly what you mean. I think people like us are good at associating the cost behind things. We know if we want to become an expert in something it will take a lot of time and hard work and we see that and go, ‘eh, not worth it.’

    One thing you can try is not beating yourself up for perceived failures. The other thing is start out small with more manageable tasks and work your way up. Also, if you find your depression interfering with a task you enjoy, identify that it is the depression and make that drive you harder in doing the task.


    • somberscribbler
      Aug 17, 2014 @ 09:55:33

      Good advice. I’ve been trying to break things down into smaller tasks. I’m still feeling overwhelmed though. I need an instruction manual for my small tasks too, lol.


  4. NotAPunkRocker
    Aug 16, 2014 @ 11:46:16

    Just be sure that you are being honest with your doctors and therapist. Sometimes it really can just be a tweak in medication that makes the difference between apathy and emotion.



    • somberscribbler
      Aug 17, 2014 @ 09:53:59

      I am seeing psych on Monday. I’ll tell him whats going on. I’m afraid of changing meds though. I have gotten such bad side effects with other combinations in the past 😦


  5. Elizabeth Jackson
    Aug 16, 2014 @ 12:24:47

    You are making complete sense. I have so much empathy for you.

    It’s not your fault.

    It’s not your fault. ( ‘Dead Poets Society’ movie speaks well to this thought.)

    Our culture blames people for depression. Doesn’t make any sense. There’s a lot of misinformation and most people don’t understand depression, which ends up being very hurtful. It can make you feel more alone and isolated.

    Thinking of you, I just posted a tweet:


    It’ll be a great day when we define health as health. There’s no need to stigmatize and separate mental & physical health. It’s all the same. Health is health. (@ElizJacksonSays)


    My heart goes out to you. It is not your fault.

    Please treat yourself with love and compassion. You deserve it.
    I care.


    • somberscribbler
      Aug 17, 2014 @ 09:53:07

      Thanks for your kind words Elizabeth! What a great tweet too! I like that “Health is health” it’s a whole. The different parts are connected, but one is not more important or more serious that the other.


  6. meredithwyatt1990
    Aug 16, 2014 @ 17:01:56

    I get this 100% oh my god :’)


  7. tizzypotts
    Aug 17, 2014 @ 09:58:11

    I can really relate to this. I have plans to do so many things-finish my novel, write poetry, sketch and paint, learn a new language, learn to play a musical instrument, and so on. But I hardly ever feel that I have the energy to do any of those things. I get frustrated with myself for being lazy, but when I’m not passionate about something I just can’t do it. I’m trying to take baby steps by doing a little of these creative activities when I can instead of putting pressure on myself to do it all in one go.


    • somberscribbler
      Aug 17, 2014 @ 10:03:09

      I’m glad that I am making sense to people. I wasn’t sure I would. I’m sorry you feel this way too. Baby steps are the best way to go about it. Even those seem insurmountable lately though. I have psych tomorrow, maybe he’ll have a recommendation. He’ll probably want to change my meds…ugh!


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