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Sadness is important

jajingna

jajingna

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I'm feeling sad tonight and I'm not sure why that is, but I know there's no need to try and change it. It's not that unpleasant. It's something to stay with and pay attention to.

Maybe you've seen the animated movie Inside Out. The main characters are emotions, and Sadness is misunderstood by the other emotions, and thought of as only a wet blanket. But in time it is shown how important Sadness was all along in helping us cope with loss and change and uncertainty.

Sadness does not equal depression but is a prominent feature of it. I believe sadness plays a big role in compassion, in empathy, in kindness and in love. Without this essential emotion, that we so often try to avoid feeling, our humanity takes a major step back.

So I'm allowing myself to feel sad, even if I don't know the reason for feeling this way. It isn't self-pity. It isn't depression. I'm not sure what it is, but I'm glad it's there.
 
jajingna

jajingna

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Besides the character Sadness in that movie, there's Eeyore the sad donkey. He's portrayed as rather weak and pathetic but also adorable. Then there's Tigger, as manic as they come. Bouncing all over the place. Maybe he broke into Tony the Tiger's sugar stash. I'm not sure what Pooh is. Just a nice little bear.

What do bears think of how we portray them? Nice and cuddly stuffed animals, representatives for peanut butter, toilet paper and Coca Cola, defenders against forest fires... they must think humans are nuts.
 
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Prycejosh1987

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Sadness does not equal depression but is a prominent feature of it. I believe sadness plays a big role in compassion, in empathy, in kindness and in love. Without this essential emotion, that we so often try to avoid feeling, our humanity takes a major step back.
I disagree. Sadness is a hindrance. It can hinder, relationships and family life, and work ethics, etc. Sadness has levels, everybody goes through sadness, but severe sadness is depression. I do not believe sadness can ever be a good thing.
 
jajingna

jajingna

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I do not believe sadness can ever be a good thing.
Really? I believe it is necessary, as a means to cope with hardship and loss. Isn't grief a form of coping and healing? If a loved one dies, doesn't sadness help someone deal with the loss and pain? Hard times happen to everybody. Sadness to me seems like a natural reaction for many things. I believe it is also a key component in empathy.
 
reservoirwolf

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I guess this is one of those topics that there could actually be as many opinions as there are people! We all experience things differently ...so sadness, and the way we perceive it, deal with it, etc., could vary widely depending on our own chemical makeup, life experiences, etc. I’ve actually never thought of this in the way you described it, jajingna! Really very interesting and thought-provoking! ;)
 
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markprosso538

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I agree, I think the most depressed people usually care the most. If I could take my depression away with a pill, I still don't think I'd want to. And one good thing about being sad, is that it's mellow and I usually sleep better. There's a comfort in it or something.
 
jajingna

jajingna

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Well, sadness and depression are not the same thing. The capacity to feel sad is normal and healthy. People who do not have this capacity are called sociopaths. They don't feel for others. A sadist even enjoys the suffering another person feels, and that is sick. Can you have compassion without the capacity to feel sadness?

Depression seems like it needs a stronger word. Clinical depression is life-threatening. That's serious stuff. You can feel sad for an hour or two and then it fades away. Depression can be so brutal it lasts years for some people. We don't want to confuse a normal emotion with a serious illness.
 
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markprosso538

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I suppose you're right, I guess depression is more dehabilitating than just being sad. To answer your question, no I don't think so. Anyone who's never felt sad probably has very little if any emotions.
 
Lunar Lady

Lunar Lady

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I agree with you @jajingna.

You rarely hear the word now, but ‘melancholy’ is a nice description of a reflective mood remembering sad events. I think it’s healthy to process sad thoughts and express those emotions.

Sadness , I think, is a healthy response to anything that has hurt us. You can feel sad for a short time and then go back to your usual frame of mind. Depression doesn’t always have tangible reasons and you can’t lift out of the dark mood. X
 

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