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The Orion

Chico State's independent student newspaper

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Chico State's independent student newspaper

The Orion

All my friends are therapists

Illustration by Dongyoung Won.

There’s a little saying I saw on a picture frame, friends are cheaper therapy. While yes, friendship is cheaper than a shrink, it doesn’t really mean friends get to become your therapist.

Little known fact about me, I suffer from depression. I have just about my whole life. I’ve seen doctors, therapists, psychotherapists, the whole Brady Bunch if you will. After a while everything starts to sound the same. So I stopped dealing with the professionals and just tried to work things out on my own.

Now having such caring friends as I do, they always try to make sure I’m happy. When I’m good, they don’t mention my mental illness. I’m like a normal kid again.

But when I’m bad, every single friend suddenly has some kind of degree in mental health and tries to fix me.

Every cookie cutter punch line you’ve read off an Instagram picture you can think of, I’ve heard.

“It will get better.”

“Life is like a roller coaster. It has its ups and downs.”

“Just be happy.”

“Think of your loved ones, they would all miss you.”

Okay, I get it. My friends care and it’s nice to see them want to help me, but when I hear, “It’ll get better,” about 200 times, I don’t even listen to it anymore. It’s just noise to me.

When my bad days happen, literally it seems like every single one of my friends suddenly have their Ph.D. and can fix my life with three words. It seems like everyone wants to get the credit of fixing Brittany.

But I don’t normally want advice on how to fix my life. Most of the time I know what to do, but I just want to vent to my friends. Can I not complain about my day to a person without them trying to over-analyze why I’m upset over a bad grade?

No, this has no hidden meaning to my overall life. No I am not looking for advice. I am simply speaking about a certain event that has just occured, please be the friend I chose and just listen.

Unless I specifically say, “What should I do?” or “I need some advice,” please do not put in your two cents on my life.

I sound a little bitter I guess, but when I’m told literally the exact same thing by all of my friends, the repetitive nature that is this “life-changing” advice is a bit annoying.

I love my friends, and yes they are much cheaper than seeing a person who actually has a Ph.D. and is supposed to change my life, but I like my friends better when they’re just my friends and not my therapist.

Brittany McClintock can be reached at [email protected] or @B_McClintock17 on Twitter.

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