Being positive can be helpful in many situations. In fact, this program helps you to think more positively in order to help manage depression. However, expecting yourself or others to think positively in every situation can actually be harmful to mental health. It is normal for people to feel down sometimes and some situations are just hard and people should not be forced to look for the silver lining in all situations. Some examples of advice that contains toxic positivity:
"Ya, you have cancer but things could be much worse, at least you have a roof over your head."
"Happiness is a choice. You wouldn't be depressed if you were more positive."
"I'm sorry the love of your life just dumped you for someone else, but everything happens for a reason."
Toxic positivity can stop people from honestly communicating their natural feelings. Toxic positivity does not make people feel better, it often just shames them and makes them feel like their justifiable sadness is their fault.
Have you experienced toxic positivity? If so, how did you handle it?
How can you support someone without forcing toxic positivity?