Lifestyle / Mental Health

You Don’t Have to Feel Grateful

TW: Mental Health, Depression

“You should be grateful it isn’t worse.”

“You’re not the worst off.”

“There’s people out there who feel worse/are experiencing worse/going through worse than you.”

“You don’t have anything to be down about.”

I hate these phrases.

You don’t have to be grateful for things not being any worse than they currently are. You are entitled to feel the way you do (depressed, frustrated, ill etc.) and you are entitled to feel down about that.

If we all went along with this idea of ‘there’s people who have it worse than you’, then, really, logic suggests that there is only one person on this whole planet who is entitled to feel down about their situation.  There is only one person who doesn’t have anyone else stealing the ‘worse off’ crown from them. They’re the only person entitled to feel rubbish and have a moan about it. What sense does that make? 

That one person is not the only person who is allowed to be unhappy with their lot in life. 

We need to stop comparing each others’ ‘bad times’, feeling the need to tell people that they shouldn’t feel upset, frustrated or annoyed with their current situation.

If things are bad for you right now, they are bad for you, whether other people agree or not. There is no hierarchy to feeling depressed, no hierarchy to trauma, no hierarchy to feeling fed up with things or to going through a bad patch in life. There is no ranking for everyone’s individual situation and circumstances, for which are ‘better’ or ‘worse’. Why do people feel the need to tell someone whether they’re entitled to feel a certain way, or compare their own/another’s situation to it?

All cases of depression, difficult situations, trauma, illness etc. are all valid and they are all difficult for that individual. They’re all relevant.

Stop comparing.

Be Your Own Thyroid Advocate Book CoverSee also:

The book Be Your Own Thyroid Advocate: When You’re Sick and Tired of Being Sick and Tiredwhich builds on this article in detail.

About Author

Rachel Hill is the highly ranked and multi-award winning thyroid patient advocate, writer, speaker and author behind The Invisible Hypothyroidism. Her thyroid advocacy work includes writing articles, authoring books, producing her Thyroid Family email newsletters and speaking on podcasts and at events about the many aspects thyroid disease affects and how to overcome these. She is well-recognised as a crucial and influential contributor to the thyroid community and has a large social media presence. Her bestselling books include "Be Your Own Thyroid Advocate" and "You, Me and Hypothyroidism".


  • Joanne
    October 28, 2022 at 12:14 pm

    Point is matters that appear silly and trivial to one person aren’t to another!

  • Karen Taylor-Brown
    August 26, 2020 at 7:18 pm

    I’m often made to feel grateful by my own family members! I live on my own, so nobody to talk to/with, share anything with. I talk on my F/book page openly about my chronic ill health + a few other interesting things now & again. I’ve been told to stop it, as I won’t get sympathy! I’m not looking for sympathy, don’t know why they think this way. I just need it off my chest. To talk about it, so that I remain as sane as I can be!

    I should be grateful, I’m not likely to be the worst one out there…!
    I should be grateful, that I don’t have something like Cancer…!???
    I should be grateful, as there are many out there, that have less than I do & are much worse off than I am!

    I worked extremely hard for almost 30 very painful yrs full time, for the tiny bit I have got! Why I should be grateful, I’ve no real idea…!!!???

    • Joanne
      October 28, 2022 at 12:16 pm

      Point is it’s not a legal requirement to feel grateful and you feel how you feel.


Leave a Reply