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How to fake being happy

Community Member
I need to be strong I need to keep it together for my kids I need to push the negative crap away and at least pretend Iā€™m ok so how do I do that
4 Replies 4

Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor

Hi Overitt

As a mum, I've discovered one of the best ways to get outside my head, that sometimes torturous place, involves letting my kids raise me (sometimes in fun childish ways).

Personally, I dealt with my depression both well and poorly at times for many years, before finally coming out of it. I hit my lowest point, my darkest point before having kids and felt no reason to keep going. That was a couple of decades ago. After my daughter was born, I still came close to that horrible low here and there but her presence raised me every day to look to the reason to stay in this world. The birth of my son a few years later raised me to the challenge of attending post natal depression group therapy. Group therapy would never have been my thing if it wasn't for him. Miraculously, it was what led me out of my 15 years of depression.

My daughter is 17 and my son 14 and ever since they were born they've been raising me, often in ways I never realised until lately. There was nothing or no one deeply challenging me to constantly rise to my full potential before they were born. Even though depressing, it was easy to drink my cares away before they were born. It was effortless, yet depressing, to focus on my worthlessness as opposed to my worth. Because of them I was forced to find value in my life on this earth.

They have challenged me in thousands of ways over the years and I've risen to most of those challenges. Much led me outside my comfort zone. Outside our comfort zone is where we're supposed to be part of the time throughout life. It's where we learn about our potential. There is little potential to be found in comfort.

Whether it involves picking which schools they'll go to, deciding on what new things we're going to cook them for dinner or even relying on them to give us a basic reason for getting out of bed every morning, they raise us constantly through the challenges that come with their existence. I actually ask my kids to challenge my consciousness. Seeing a lot of our beliefs are taught, passed down through the generations, there are many self limiting destructive ones they help me get rid of. I couldn't master this skill without them.

Kids raise us to meet the most powerful version of our self. If we're paying close attention, they will also raise us to be more conscious of how we're interacting with our own child nature, that nature that often gets lost along the way as we learn to grow concerned about everything.

How do your kids raise you?


Champion Alumni
Champion Alumni

Dear Overitt

Welcome to the forum. Good to have you here.

Therising has given you a great answer and I have to agree with what has been said. I can see how I being raised by my children as they challenge my assumptions at various times.

We all fake our emotions at times for all sorts of reasons. We wear masks for our own protection to stop others seeing the essential us. It doesn't work. Oh yes we appear to be in control of our lives, thoughts, feelings but mostly we are a bit of a mess inside. So we work harder to hide these feelings from ourselves. Faking any emotion is hard work and it will become unmanageable at times.

You do not say what difficulty you are struggling with so I cannot make any specific comments. At the moment I am presuming you have something like depression or there has been a major event in the life of your family and you are struggling to contain this. Can you be a bit more specific but only tell us as much as is comfortable.

Being strong for your family to give them some stability at this time is great. Being aware of yourself is also important. If there has been a major upheaval in the family I suggest you grieve along with your children. OK you need to maintain some control at times. I found when my mom died my daughters shared my devastation and shock. We were all affected by the loss and all of us grieved together. There were times when they cared for me and times when I looked after them. There was no away I could should them a false face, because they knew me, and because it may have been as not caring.

Sorry if my comments are missing the mark. Perhaps you can generalise to your situation. It would also be great if you returned and gave us a little information so we can help in more specific ways.


Community Member

I am a great pretender

I am not sure how I do it, it's exhausting, but is now, after all these years, a part of who I am.

I had to convince my new GP, after I moved 8 years ago, that I had anxiety. He didn't believe me so I asked him to take my BP. Needless to say he was shocked. I hide it in so many ways. Even people who know I have mental illnesses Think that when I take deep breaths it works to calm me, when what I am really doing is firmly masking my distress, because I cannot bare to distress people just because I am distressed. Yes I know all the irony and lack of logic implied in those statements ...

I wish I had an answer for you. I had to explain anxiety once to my youngest with autism because I had an anxiety attack and had to pull over. He admitted that sometimes he felt like that, but never had a name for it. He has since been diagnosed with anxiety. I am now trying to be honest with him and give him as good an explanation as I can so he has the words to explain how he feels. It has made me think about how my dishonesty around my mental health has been more of a disservice to those I love rather than keeping them safe from my frailties, especially my beautiful youngest who has autism and ID and just needed a word explained so he could express how he feels.

Taking off the mask is hard. All the years I have been perfecting it have created isolation ... and a fear of being found out. I am now trying to be candid and that is also hard.

Life wasn't meant to be easy I guess. Sorry to have not been more helpful .. and rambling a bit

Valued Contributor
Valued Contributor

Hi Overitt,

I have down feelings sometimes too, when I'm with my kids. I understand the instinct to hide your feelings. But it's okay to feel your feelings, and it's also ok to show your feelings to your kids. Sometimes if I'm feeling sad, I will just say to my boys, I feel sad right now. This teaches them that it's ok to feel things, and also to nurture and have empathy for others. And quite often, they manage to cheer me up! I've done this with them both from a fairly young age (maybe from age 4?).

I hope this helps.