I laid in bed last night and caught myself googling “how to not be depressed as a millennial ”. The first link that populated was an article that stated that millennials (ages 22-37) have anxiety at nearly double the rate of baby boomers. That at least 30 percent of working millennials are classified with general anxiety disorder and 61 percent of college students experience it “frequently”.
I began to wonder who they’re polling and how many of that sample size were actually being honest. Because a multitude of my close personal friends experience chronic depression and every single person I know within my age bracket, no matter how secure or “together” they seem is battling a looming uncertainty about the future. Tales as old as time such as a tough job market, student and credit card debt, ambition addiction and career crisis. Unprecedented challenges involving constantly changing, toxic political and economic climates. Not to mention the literal climate and its effect on our planet as we know it.
To make it all worse we can read about it from 1000 contradictory sources while subconsciously comparing ourselves to everyone we know (and every celebrity and super model that we don’t). Every study and resource on how to help is different and equally as contradictory.
We’re shamed for not helping. We’re shamed for hopping on a bandwagon and co-opting a cause that belongs to someone else’s identity, some other well rounded, well educated and eloquently spoken individual whose level of expertise and level of “woke” you may likely never reach.
You need to be perfect: smart but not stand offish. Attractive but not conceited. Wealthy and highly successful but down the earth. You must be ambitious and innovative (30 under 30, are you familiar?) but don’t forget to be sacrificial and family oriented. You must be truly unique and individual but adaptable and universally likable. Build community but don’t care what anyone thinks. Relax but don’t drink too much or watch too much tv or escape into your phone…
I don’t know about you but some days I am fucking exhausted.
Some moments I’m more tired than I’m resilient. More irritable than kind. More anxious than perfect.
And some days that’s okay.