Lets Talk About Depression

Depression took over my life at the beginning of this year. Many people have a misperception that depression is just a bout of sadness but for me, it has been a completely separate thing to the scale of happiness and unhappiness.

At first I assumed it was misery caused by whatever recent stresses had been going on in my life, then some variant of seasonal affective disorder or a crisis of self-confidence. Then as it continued to worsen, I finally started to face up to that this wasn’t a short spell of feeling bad. It was months and months of continuous sadness, tiredness, malaise, exhaustion and negative thoughts.

People talk about how it is a choice to be unhappy but with depression, I felt like I had no choice but be unhappy.

Working, doing laundry, cooking a healthy meal- the basics of my daily life all became difficult tasks which often led to frustration or tears. Contemplating doing anything which would improve my state of being would invariably lead to countless confidence crises.

To show the state to which depression twists your mind, even thinking about seeking help led to the inevitable thoughts of there is nothing wrong with you and any doctor or counsellor in their right mind will tell you to cop on.

The worst part is the continuous taunts from my mind of what do you have to be depressed about anyway. It’s the funny thing about my depression; it likes to tell me my life is crap and then to invalidate my feelings about my life being crap. It likes to shout ‘you’re being a drama queen’. My depression is a liar.

To be fair, I have many great things in my life which should bring me happiness but they should not be used to invalidate other feelings like sadness, frustration, anger, misery and hatred. In the last few weeks, I have realised that by ignoring those feelings just causes them to get worse. To move on from a bad feeling, it needs to be validated and accepted.

There are many excellent pieces of writing out there which illuminate depression with many well-thought out phrases about how depression is like being down in a deep dark hole and not being able to see a way out. There also is another phrase which says that you have to hit rock bottom before you accept help, and in April, that is what happened.

After not being able to get out of bed for 2 days straight, my boyfriend suggested I talk to my doctor. I credit him with giving me the strength to allow myself to be vulnerable and ask for the help I need.

I am still nowhere near recovered yet but the process has started. The black hole is still there and maybe it will be there for the rest of my life, but I am starting to walk away from it.


18 thoughts on “Lets Talk About Depression

  1. Pingback: The One Lovely Blog Award & Best Moment Award | lovelifeandhappyeverafter

  2. Depression is an illness like (and unlike) any other. It needs diagnosis and treatment which, with time, will lead to recovery.
    Keep your eye on the light at the end of the tunnel and you’ll get there.

  3. Brilliant post,very inspiring and such an honest read. I know how hard it is to talk about depression so fair play to you for speaking up.
    I’ve decided to nominated this post for The Best Moment Award in my post over at http://lovelifeandhappyeverafter.com/2013/06/03/the-one-lovely-blog-award-best-moment-award/
    Congrats and I want to wish you all the best on your journey. It might not be easy but like you say, the process has now started. Take care and mind yourself x

  4. Accepting it is hard and also in a way relieving. There’s still a way to go but you’re doing something about it and that’s awesome.

  5. You somehow managed to put into words exactly how I felt when I had my last bout. I felt why should I be sad when I have everything I’ve ever wanted. A good house, a happy relationship and a job so shouldn’t I be happy ever after. I found it so frustrating but I wasn’t happy. Just sad all the time. My brother did say to me that because you grow up reading fairytales about princesses who get their ‘happy ever after’, you feel like when you get it that’s all you should need or want in life. But unfortunately that’s not how life works. Depression is an illness and doesn’t care if you have your happy ever after.

    It took me a long time to go to the doctor and it wasn’t until that point I started to make a recovery. I know how hard it is to do so well done for getting the courage to go. I’m glad you seem to have support with your boyfriend too. Depression is an illness and like any other illness there is treatment and a road to recovery. I wish you the best of luck on your road.

    If ever you want to talk you know where I am X

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  7. Sorry to hear about this *hugs* I know how it feels, I’ve suffered on and off for probably 10 years now. I think the worst of it is when others don’t understand and say things like ‘ah sure, just cheer up, you’ll be grand’. It’s a right kick in the stomach as you know it wouldn’t be said if you were suffering from a physical illness. The best thing to try and do is own it, fess up and live with it, make sure it’s a part of you but doesn’t BECOME you or take over, you know? Going to the doctor is a big step, it can seem so huge but once it’s done the weight begins to lift off slowly. Good luck with your recovery, it’s great you have supportive people around, they really do make the difference

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  10. Great post! This line should be in bold “To move on from a bad feeling, it needs to be validated and accepted.” It’s so important to understand your spectrum of emotions, acknowledge them and literally allow your body experience them instead of trying to suppress them. It’s the only healthy way to move forward. Exploring your mind in practical ways can certainly help e.g. yoga, pilates, art, reading, writing, meditation etc. Then don’t forget diet and exercise. Serotonin is produced when we exercise and it can be found in foods like turkey, chicken, avocado, nuts. Get sunshine when you can and if not SAD lamps help in the darker months. And last but not least, engage in activities you are passionate about. This will bring you to loving yourself more. Don’t know what that is? Then read your life backwards… what did you love to do as a child? Bake a cake? 🙂 Best of luck!

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