Inside Out Gives Value to Sadness : Don’t Be Afraid to Talk About It

For millions of people who suffer from depression, the validation that sadness is real can be everything.

Sliding into the vast black hole that is depression is heart-wrenching and exhausting.

Disney Pixar Inside Out gives value to sadness in a beautiful, harmonious way.

©2015 Disney•Pixar. All Rights Reserved.

Talk About Sadness

My greatest bout with depression came after we lost our baby several years ago. It was a dark place that took me months to dig my way out of.

Joy was nowhere to be found in my mind.

Any attempt at it brought me guilt and anger over the situation.

As much as I wanted to choose joy, I felt overpowered and suffocated by sadness. It was all I knew.

anorexia in a 7 yr old

I have also watched my (then) 7-year-old daughter battle depression in another form.

Bogged down by sadness and anxiety, she was overcome with emotions that she could not process at such a young age.

A team of doctors, crazy medications, and tons of prayers later, we were able to bring her back, so to speak.

That 7-year-old is now 11. Just like Riley in Inside Out.

how far they come

That transition that Pete Docter saw in his daughter Ellie is real.

The struggle, as a parent, of watching your child go through a myriad of emotions they don’t understand.

In the movie, Riley is sinking into depression after a big move that not even she can comprehend.

Within her mind, Sadness has no understanding of why she wants to touch the memories, thus turning them forever into sad moments.

©2015 Disney•Pixar. All Rights Reserved.

Sadness struggles with the rules she has always followed because the deep feeling to touch and feel is real to her.

As we watch Sadness struggle inside the mind, we notice Riley falling into a depression externally.

Her physical world outside her mind seems to be crashing in around her and her adolescent mind does not fully know how to react.

INSIDE OUT - Riley Andersen
©2015 Disney•Pixar. All Rights Reserved.

Rash decisions, angry outbursts, and unsolicited sarcasm become her norm as Fear, Anger, and Disgust are left to lead her mind.

Sadness and Joy struggle to get back to help bring her out of the dark slump she has sunk into. Without spoilers, simply know that sadness is validated.

The emotion has value and it’s definitely understood by the time the credits roll.

I’ve been there. My daughter has been there.

The struggle and inner turmoil are real. Inside Out just opened a very big door for us all to walk through.

An opportunity to talk about depression and the very real, sometimes tragic, results it can lead to.

©2015 Disney•Pixar. All Rights Reserved.

As parents, talking about mental health can be life-changing for our kids.

Even my 5-year-old now has a better grasp of the emotions she has “driving” her.

As tears fall, she looks at me and tells me Sadness is driving and she just wants to have Joy back.

When she notices others are not happy, she tells them they need to put Joy in control.

©2015 Disney•Pixar. All Rights Reserved.

See Inside Out. Start a conversation with your kids. It’s an important talk and Pixar just opened the door in a bright, whimsical way. 

365 Days of Gratitude

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