Coping with Depression caused by HBV

Dear community members,

I am writing today to seek advice for coping with my depression, which has been brought on by my recent HBV diagnosis. Unfortunately, I have turned to smoking again as a way to find comfort, but I know that it is not a healthy or sustainable solution.
I quitted smoking for w month, started exercise daily, drinking water about 2litr per day, start healthy diet, and regular checkups. my HBV DNA is 193 IU/ml and I am hbeAg negative.
But dealing with HBV is exhausted me, I am afraid of discrimination, and future. nothing can comfort me. I am looking for something make me calm some how, and keep motivated. I have a job offer that before diagnosis was very OK, but it encounter some delay, I fear they canceled it or not. I have tried hard to achieve it.
My life is lucked. I can’t tell anybody about my situation. and I have very bad feeling, feeling stuck, feeling loneliness, feeling always I have to be like this. I was very social person but now, I affraid to be with people and shy. feel guilty.

I know you maybe heard of these word a lot, and it might be very silly to hear that from me, but I need help, Sorry for bothering you.
I am hoping to hear from others who may have gone through similar experiences, and to find alternative ways to cope with my feelings and manage my depression in a positive and healthy way. Any advice or recommendations would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you in advance for your support and understanding.

Best regards,


I know many of us have seen such a situation, and your help would be beneficial for every one of us.

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Hello @IWillBeCured ,

I understand very well your feelings. I found out to be the virus carrier almost 3 years ago. At the same time I found to have both hbv and hcv. I had the misfortune to have suffered from many other health issues, I had been operated on 8 times in my life, I experienced many medical procedures. And two viruses was the outcome. I remember being devastated by the news, feeling the life being unfair as I already had much suffered. All this makes me still overreacting whenever I see the risk of new problems and it makes me very scared.

I don’t have advice, I can only share how I coped with the diagnosis.

Luckily in my case I had no symptoms which would call my attention to the virus. I tried to concentrate on new challenges that appeared in my professional life. That kept my head busy. Maybe your new job could be the same for you ? And besides that, time was healing too, it became easier with time, the first shock was gone, life became nearly normal to me.

Also, I know it is not easy to be sociable when you feel down, but sometimes to see other people is the best cure for the mind.

And last but not least, there are many people who live with hbv for long years, have families and children, you can read their stories on this forum. It gives hope, it is a proof that normal life with hbv is totally possible.

I hope this message can be of some help to you.


Dear @IWillBeCured and @Magdalena,

I am sorry to hear of your difficulties following your HBV diagnoses. I am not HBV+ (I am a senior HBV virologist), so I cannot directly share your painful experiences. However, I’ve got other chronic medical conditions, and one of our sons was seriously injured in a car accident a few years ago, so I have some exposure to trauma stemming from medical issues. For me, knowing that there were people who cared for me and would listen to me when I needed to talk was invaluable in coming to grips with those challenges. It took quite a bit of time to regain my equilibrium, but with help, I succeeded. The HepB Community is full of people who understand the pressures you are under and are doing what they can to help, ranging from working to develop the next generation of therapies to lending a sympathetic ear when it is sorely needed.

I wish you the very best,



Hello @IWillBeCured

I lot of us has gone the same pain and heartbreaking moment the time we found out the desease, life has never been the same since than.
I was caught out of suprise during my third yearly test as per my job requirement. After that i loss my job,my girlfriend,my dreams of buying cars,building a house,everything collapsed. There are day’s i use to cry and ask myself what did i do so wrong to deserve this.

I still kept secret to alot of people about my disease, its so difficult and painful for me everytime my friends & some of my relatives use to ask why i left such a good paying job, i dont have the answer, i use to reply here and there or i am trying my luck overseas.

Well that’s part of my sad stories, but honestly i want to tell you time heals everything, as time pass by your pain will start to ease day by day. As of now today i am dealing very well with the desease, i dont try to think too much about the disease, i try to stay happy as much as i can, i try to keep it simple, i considered it as diagnose that requires 1 tablet per day. Thats it nothing else .also there are many inspiring people here in this group. There are many couples positive & negative and living a very happy life,so for me i already decided hbv shouldn’t stop me from fulfilling my dreams, all i need is a job overseas to rebuild my broken dreams once again.

I hope this helps you a little.


Dear @IWillBeCured,

I’m sorry to hear about the tough time you’re going through and wish you all the strength to get through it. I just want to reiterate the points brought up by @john.tavis, you are not alone here. There are several threads where people have shared the same thoughts that may give you some hope:

In case you are feeling like you need more mental support, please feel free to explore these options: Mental Health resources.

Hope this helps, and please do not hesitate to reach out to the community here.



Stop smoking and keep working out. Although I smoke a cigar once a while and got lazy and have not worked out. Lol.

I gotta say for me, having hepatitis B sucks and I get depressed or just feel life is not fair sometimes. I don’t think it will never go away. I m probably only one I know who has hep b and I went out to friend’s birthday and in a crowd restaurant, I was probably the only one. Not that it crossed my mind at that time. But I knew I couldn’t drink because of my CHB. I am still ashamed, afraid, embarrassed, or “feel dirty” to tell anyone like friends, co workers or just people.

I don’t know where you live or how old you are, but continue to focus on yourself. Listen to music, motivation speeches on YouTube/internet. Since I m a guy I listen to David Goggins on YouTube a lot. He say’s disappeared for a year and focus on yourself 100% and you ll come out kicking a$$.

And what Thomas has done with this forum is just amazing bc it gives an outlet which is priceless for people like me with hepatitis b.


Hi, @IWillBeCured
Your life actually does not depend on this virus that much. I hope that with time you can feel that your life is not build around it. Don’t tell about your HBV to employers or colleagues unless you absolutely have to due to nature of your work (medical or food industry with close contact). Tell to your close and loved people, they will support you.
You can read my cure story here
Lead a healthy life, monitor your viral loads, consult your doctor from time to time, and live a very long and exciting life.


Hi IWillBeCured,
Thank you for sharing how you feel with us all. I will say it is normal for you to have all those feelings. Nothing is wrong with you. The only time I will suggest there is a problem is when these feelings start impacting or interfering with your life like going to work, withdrawing from all social activities, having trouble getting your daily activities taking care of among others. Which is not the case here. It is in our nature to respond that way whenever we are confronted by a sudden news. After my diagnosis, I think it took me over 3 years to really come to terms with it. I tried fighting my diagnosis and refused to accept it, this only made things worse. In that 3 years I realized something need to change because I was not dealing with my feelings very well. So I made a change by spending a lot of time researching and reading about this virus/disease. The NIH and the Hepatitis B Foundation’s website were among the sources where I tried to learn more about hepatitis B. Overtime, I realized that the more knowledgeable I became the less stress or depressed I got. Knowledge they say is power was true for me. Finally, I was able to get to a point where I was at peace with my diagnosis and I accepted it . So instead of asking why me, I was rather asking what can I do about situation. Some people say time heals; which I do not think is true. The truth is that over time one is able to adapt or cope a bit better with the situation or condition they are in. It is a process, just like the one people grieving go through and overtime you will accept your diagnosis and be at peace with it. Then you will be able to cope or adapt better.

Another thing that helped me was to share my story. I volunteered as a storyteller for the Hep. B Foundation #justB storytelling campaign. This was after I have accepted and come to be at peace with my diagnosis. The storytelling process helped me confront that fear head on and also allowed me to share my deep thoughts and feelings. The more I became comfortable talking about hepatitis B, the better I got dealing with it. We all approach such problems differently; try reading, talk to someone you know who might have faced an adversity that can identify with your situation, watching funny YouTube videos and nature documentaries helped me as well, going for a walk when you sense those feelings rising, look for the small positives and be thankful for it, and continue to dream as the diagnosis should not be the end for you but rather the beginning of a new life (living with a virus). If you feel like crying, let it out. If you feel like screaming go for it. Find a healthy way(s) that you are comfortable with and channel your feelings through. Give yourself some time to process this new life and you will reach a place where you can adapt and cope better with this disease. At least that is how I handled my diagnosis and the feelings/emotions that followed. It takes time, take it one day at a time. Try to remind yourself that this is a journey, and not a race.

Best, Bright.



I, along with many others totally understand how you are feeling.

My journey is only 9 months so far and already it’s been an absolute roller coaster of emotions. The Five Stages of grief come to mind but to be honest, most people will fluctuate between all the stages for a long time. I got to acceptance really quickly and then went back to anger and upset. The “why me?”, the “what’s the point?” And the feeling straight up like a leper. It’s pants. I’m away from home, living on the other side of the world to the people I would usually go to for support. I haven’t been able to go and get my “mum hug” when I’ve really needed one.

Easier said than done but try to look at the positives: you have a diagnosis. Most people don’t realise they have HBV until it’s far too late so it’s good you have the knowledge a lot of sufferers don’t have.

I went through a mad phase of drinking and smoking after diagnosis, I hit what I like to call the “fuck it” button. But I’ve tried to channel my stress into exercise now as well and I feel so much better for it. I’ve not touched alcohol or smoked in 6 months, I had a glass of wine at Christmas and felt crappy after, I can’t tolerate alcohol anymore (which is good for me to be honest) and the smell of cigarettes makes me want to throw up now.

I worry about relationships too. Will people judge me for my diagnosis? You’ll only know when you get into that situation, none of us have a crystal ball so take it as it comes. Just be responsible. I have not told a partner yet, I’m as single as a person can come. However, the friends I have told because I want to keep them safe, have all reacted positively.

My advice, if anything. Try to live as normally as you can. Have a support network in place. Do things that make you happy. Don’t do things that make you unhappy. You have ZERO obligation to tell people unless you could put people at risk, and even then, it’s down to your morals in most cases.

Unfortunately, there won’t be an easy fix for how you’re feeling. I would be a liar if I said there was. But you can take control of these emotions, and if you need a hand doing that, that’s okay, reach out to your support network or a professional. Speaking as someone with clinical depression and anxiety, most of the time, for me at least, that fight gets easier the longer you actively fight against your opponent.

I really hope that things begin to look brighter for you. :heart:


I didn’t really solve my mental health issue yet, but from my experience, learning to accept what you can’t control, and focus on what you can seem to help.


Thank you all for the supportive comments in this thread. I really appreciate you all sharing your experiences and coming together to cheer on each other.