Does living in a small town make me depressed? (+3 coping tips)

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This article will discuss if living in a small town can be bad for your mental health. It will show what are things happen when you live in a small town, that make you feel depressed; and what are ways to cope with it.

Does living in a small town make me depressed? 

Yes, living in a small town can make you depressed. It seems nowadays, contrary to what was believed a while ago, people may be getting more depressed in small towns than in big cities. It seems something is changing in the structure of society that being part of a small community can cause you to feel depressed.

And this has been confirmed through studies. One that was done by a research institute in North Dakota showed that there is a higher rate of consumption of opioids in young people in smaller communities than in big cities. 

This changes the belief that big cities were where people would be exposed to great danger and all sorts of drugs. But what is behind this? 

There are some considerations to be done. The first one is how society has changed in the last few years. And how social media has made it extremely important that people have what to share.

On Instagram and so on, you should always be sharing exciting things you are doing. And to you people, living in small towns, having what to share daily can be hard. This can cause them to feel disconnected, and even have a negative outlook on their lives and themselves.

The sense of boredom that can come from the routine the small towns set you in can also harm your mental health. You can lose the sense of the exciting things that can happen, and experience your life in an unfulfilling manner.

Another matter that can impact the mental health of people living in small towns is the lack of support they have there. This is not necessarily what will cause them to be depressed, but small towns usually have fewer health care facilities than a bigger town would have.  

, when someone is struggling with depression, can have a devastating impact. The first problem is that when a person realizes there is something wrong with them they may need to look for professional help. But in a small town, everyone knows everyone. 

So going to a mental health professional can make you feel exposed. As if everyone in town will know what you are going through. So for that, you have two options, you either suck it up and go with what you have got in your town, or you will have to discover what are your possibilities of health care in another town close by.

And then there is the problem of the quality of the professionals in smaller towns. Since there are not a lot of clients, and less money to be made, it may be that there aren’t a lot of specialists in smaller towns. 

And although there may be some great and caring professionals out there, some may just tell you that you need to change your line of thought.

What is known to be impossible for someone with depression. This lack of appropriate diagnosis can make your condition even worse. You may not get the medication and treatment you need, and may even feel guilty for not being able to just snap out of the blues you are in or change your line of thought.

And of course, there is a lot to be done in lifestyle changes to cope with depression, and nowadays online you can find as much information as you need. You can take up exercising, meditation, and leaving a healthy lifestyle. 

But at some point medication and therapy are extremely important to help you understand why you feel the way you do, and reduce the intensity of your symptoms.

When that is not possible, and you feel you have used all the possible strategies your environment gives you, things may even go to the extreme such as suicidal attempts. With all of this, it is important to question how to improve health instruction in small towns.

And how to make mental health a common subject of discussion in small communities? That should be important since when people talk about it, the stigma and taboo around it starts to fade.

Small towns usually have a lot of events in which the whole community is part, so taking some time during those to discuss mental health issues can be a great way to bring this closer to the real people are living in.

No one should be forced to admit to their condition and diagnosis, but having a spokesperson, maybe a mental health professional, explaining to people how mental illness affects people, how it is not a choice or a sin. And what ways people can cope and look for help, can prevent future problems.

This should be even more important to be directed at young people. They are, nowadays, the ones that are more exposed to the dangers social media, and online life brings. Helping them identify risk factors, and how to talk to their parents and ask for help, can be what gives them a bright future ahead.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ): Does living in a small town make me depressed? 

What is a small-town syndrome? 

Small town syndrome is what happens when someone has been living for so long in a small town, that it can feel like there is no relevance in any other form of life aside from the one you have been living. 

Small town syndrome can lead you to gossip to a point that you may start to spread things even if they are not true. You may also start to judge others for doing things that you don’t understand as normal, or right. This may also lead you to reject them. 

You can develop a sense of pride and entitlement for your small town, and the way you live, and you may even start to reject people that are from different backgrounds, even immigrants.

How can I cope with living in a small town? 

Living in a small town can be a particular experience. If you are in one, there are some things you can do to guarantee you are living the best way you can. The first thing to do is relax and take your time. Small towns have their own particular pace. You don’t need to rush with things.

You should avoid gossip. Try to not get involved in the talk of the town. This will prevent you from creating a relationship based on gossip, and only being close to people that you feel you can trust. Know that when people settle in a small town, they will have no need to show themselves to others, and be in the limelight.

You should know when living in a small town, that you should respect the people there, and learn how the city works. Show people from the town how dependable you are, and how you are willing to learn, little by little, how it works in the town.

Know that when you live in a small town, you will see people you know every time. People will always say hi, and making friends in that environment is a process. And it is also important to know that, at some point, your secrets will come out in a small town. People talk, and at some point, they may talk about you.

What are the Pros of living in a small town? 

There are some Pros to living in a small town. It can give you the chance for financial growth, that is because small towns are usually less expensive than big cities. Small towns usually have great scenery around them. This gives a great opportunity for road trips that nurture your mind and body.

The crime rate is also low in smaller towns, making it safer for you to live there. You may not need to worry about your safety as much as you would if you were in a bigger town. 

Aside from that sense of security, the familiarity that can come from a small town can offer you another type of security, the one that comes from having people you know and trust around.

What are the cons of living in a small town? 

But it is also important to know that living in a small town can also have its cons. And although you may be able to save up when living in a small town, you should know that in smaller towns you may have fewer opportunities for well-paying jobs. 

In it, you may also have fewer options for entertainment. You may need to go to other cities if you want to see a movie or a concert. Another thing is that the public transportation in smaller towns may not be so good, and because of that, you may need to get a car. 

And finally, a con in living in a smaller town is the over-familiarity. You may feel like your neighbors, or people around you know too much of your life or are always willing to tell you how to live your life.

How can teens make friends when living in a small town?

Making friends, when you are a teenager, is not always easy. When you are living in a small town, it can even be harder. If your kid is having trouble making friends, you may want to discuss with them how they can have a good conversation.

Encourage them to open up to others, and how they can break the ice to start a conversation. Try to help your teenage kid discover ways they like to socialize. What are the activities they like doing, and how they can interact with people in those.

Discuss with them how they can make friends at school, and how, when they approach a group of people or a person they want to be friends with, they should share common interests. 

This will help them create a meaningful relationship. Always remind them that making friends is a process, that they need to take it to step by step.

Conclusion 

This article centered on showing how living in a small town can cause a person to feel depressed. The article also explained ways for people to cope with it.

If you have any questions or comments about this article, feel free to write them in the section below.

References

https://www.heretohelp.bc.ca/visions/rural-remote-and-northern-communities-vol16/going-mental-in-a-small-town
https://www.heretohelp.bc.ca/visions/rural-remote-and-northern-communities-vol16/going-mental-in-a-small-town
https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/how-everyone-became-depressed/201604/is-the-countryside-now-more-toxic-the-city?amp

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