I'm Not Depressed, I'm An Introvert

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Put that chapter title into a Google search and the results show an all too common misconception experienced by many.

It's happened to me.

Doctor: tell me about your lifestyle. Do you go to the gym? Play sport?

Me: no, I'd rather be at home, reading a book.

Doctor: What sort of things are you interested in?

Me: Books, art, photography

Doctor: You're telling me you like reading books but you don't have much outdoor activity? How many friends do you have?

Me: Not many

Doctor: C'mon, how many?

Me: I dunno. 2?

Doctor: why? Is there some kind of personality clash or...?

Me: i'm just not very sociable.

Doctor: Are you in a relationship?

Me: no

Doctor: why? Because of your condition?

Me: yeah
(Although what I was really thinking was: I don't know anyone I want to be in a relationship with so how could I be in one? I'm not about to start one with a person I don't like just to feel validated. Being single doesn't make me a loser, it doesn't make me lonely. I don't join dating sites, I don't want to actively seek out potential partners because I don't need one to be happy. And I'm grey asexual which complicates things but I'm not even going into that with you.)

Doctor: You look depressed to me, you need to open up, get out more, how about joining a gym? Cycling?

Me: I have an ankle problem.

Doctor: Ah ok, ok. How about walking to one end of the shopping centre and back?

Me thinking: (I hate shopping. I never like what's in fashion and when I do rarely find something I like it never fits.)

Doctor: I'd recommend cbt. When I see you again you'll be full of the joys of spring, married with 4 kids *laughs*

Me thinking (god, I hope not)

I didn't attend that appointment alone, my mum was with me, and she tried to tell the doctor that I wasn't withdrawn, I'd always been this way, it's my personality. He didn't buy it.

Undeniably, signs of depression can include becoming withdrawn, spending time indoors, losing interest in things which you used to enjoy. But introverted traits are commonly mistaken for symptoms of depression.

I'm not withdrawing from society because I've lost interest in being with people. I just prefer being alone.

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