Editor's Note: We are a non-religious magazine. However, we acknowledge that spirituality is important to many. Our Faith column is a place to discuss how faith (of any kind) positively affects mental health and how to improve the conversation around mental health within faith communities.
I never realized it, but when I was depressed I faced an identity crisis every day. I put up all sorts of masks, ones that conveyed wholeness, happiness, sanity, whatever I needed to fit into the mould of seeming “okay.” I would morph my emotions, how I talked, and what I did in order to succumb to the status quo around me.
I often wondered why my relationships fell apart, why I never really had that many friends, and what I was doing wrong.
Before I was depressed I had a big group of friends who appreciated me and who shared really great memories. I constantly beat myself up for it, saying to myself I was too weird, or too awkward or not approachable or not good enough. I got to the point where I settled for having no friends, as all of my relationships destructed.
People would often tell me I was a loser, or that I wouldn’t go anywhere, or that if I wasn’t so soft, then maybe I would have friends.
I would often lash out at people out of my feeling of being backed into a corner. I didn’t want people to see I was depressed or I was struggling in any way, so if some crack was exposed and the light shone through a little bit, I panicked and often times I would say something that I would regret the moment I saw my friends faces fall while they walked away, damaged by my words.
Misery must love company because I often created an environment of misery.
It wasn’t until I recovered that I realized why I kept having these problems. I kept asking God “Why am I so lonely? Why don’t I have any friends?” And in fact, I realized I was asking for the wrong thing. I placed the blame on God and the people around me, when really it was me that was the issue.
Are you enjoying this article? We are a nonprofit and depend on donations to keep running. If you are enjoying this article, would you consider making a $2 donation?
There are many things and people we can place our identity in. It could be an idolized celebrity, a friend, a significant other, or a societal construct. However, these are all imperfect things. It could come from a good place where the celebrity you idolize is inspirational, or the friend you have known forever seems to have their life together, but these people are human: they are imperfect, just like you and I (which is okay).
It says in 2 Corinthians 5:17 “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.”
Once I decided to place my identity in Christ, everything changed for me. I became a new creation, one that didn’t constantly listen to the lies around me.
I am not what my parents say, I am not what my friends say, and I am not defined by my mental illness, or my past failures; I am defined by Christ, who calls us his masterpiece.
Once I really embraced that, I experienced freedom. I could simply be myself, someone I wasn’t for many years. My emotions were mine, my experiences were mine, and my relationships flourished because I decided to stop listening to what others had to say about who I was and instead chose to listen to who God says I am.
And God says I am victorious, courageous, redeemed, and valued. It means that He sees me without spot or wrinkle.
I am glad my identity crisis is over, because now that I have embraced all that God says I am instead of what the imperfect things of the world say I am, my relationships have become whole. I am an authentic version of myself.
If you feel broken beyond repair, ugly, tarnished by the words of other people or yourself, I would leave you with two verses from the bible:“I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful…” (Psalm 139:14)
“We are God’s masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.” (Ephesians 2:10)
Share this Post:
If you enjoyed this article, please donate $2
As a nonprofit, we rely on donations to keep our magazine and community running. If you enjoyed this article, please consider donating:
Report ad as harmful | Ad Policy
Don't Like Seeing Ads? We are a nonprofit and ads are one way we raise money to keep our site and projects going. If you don't like to see ads on our site, signup for monthly donations and help us fully fund ourselves through donations!
The opinions and information shared in this article may not represent that of Libero Network Society. We hold no liability for any harm that may incur from reading content on our site. Please always consult your own medical professionals before making any changes to your medication, activities, or recovery process.