Depression

The Invisible Illness

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02 May 17
159

Depression is humiliating

It turns intelligent, kind people into zombies who can’t wash a dish or change their socks. It affects the ability to think clearly, to feel anything, to ascribe value to your lifelong passions, your relative good fortune. It scoops out your normal healthy ability to cope with bad days and bad news, and replaces it with an unrecognizable sludge that finds no pleasure, no delight, no point in anything. You alienate your friends because you can’t comfort yourself socially, you risk your job because you can’t concentrate, you live in moderate squalor because you have no energy to stand up, let alone take out the garbage. You become pathetic and you know it. And you have no capacity to stop the downward plunge. You have no perspective, no emotional reserves, no faith that it will get better. So you feel guilty and ashamed of your inability to deal with life like a regular human, which exacerbates the depression and the isolation. If you’ve never been depressed, thank your lucky stars and back off the folks who take a pill so they can make eye contact with the grocery store cashier. No one on earth would choose the nightmare of depression over an averagely turbulent normal life. It’s not an incapacity to cope with day to day living in the modern world. It’s an incapacity to function. At all. No one chooses it. No one deserves it. It runs in families, it ruins families. You cannot imagine what it takes to feign normalcy, to show up to work, to make a doctors appointment, to pay bills, to walk your dog, to return library books on time, to keep enough toilet paper on hand, when you are exerting most of your capacity on trying not to kill yourself. Depression is real. Compassion is also real. And a depressed person may cling desperately to it until they are out of the woods and they may remember your compassion for the rest of their lives as a force greater than their depression. Have a heart.

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02 Mar 17
334

Why do people with depression push others away?

I can tell you the reasons that I push people away. One, people who aren’t depressed cannot and do not understand it. As a result, they say well-meaning things like “Cheer up”, “Things will get better”, “There are a lot of people worse off than you so you should be thankful”, “Snap out of it” (or “Just get over it, will you?”), “Stop whining”, “You should volunteer or do something for others so you can see how lucky you are.” or “Oh well, s&$t happens to all of us”. Yes, I have heard all these comments at one time or another. The problem is when you are depressed, you do not think logically and therefore, any platitudes or “logical” statements will feel ignorant, unkind or unhelpful and will usually make you feel frustrated, weird, selfish or guilty, which results in feeling even more depressed. In order to avoid hearing these well-meaning comments, a depressed person will usually prefer to not interact with anyone. Two, misery does not love company. Depressed people know they are a downer and feel guilty about it. They feel like a loser and they know that no one wants to be around a downer or a loser so they distance themselves until such time as they are happier. Oftentimes, though, they won’t have to distance themselves as their “friends” or family members do it for them. Three, a person who has been depressed for a long time, especially if they have co-morbid issues like ADHD, Asperger’s, OCD, etc., has had to endure betrayals, scorn, harsh criticisms, teasing, bullying and unkind comments for a long, long time. Because of this, the person has learned that most people are not nice, kind or good and thus, it is better to avoid and not trust most people. If you have someone close to you that is depressed and pushing you away, you should let them know you are there to listen (but not judge) and help support them in any way you can. You shouldn’t try to make them “feel better” (because you probably can’t). You should call them to ask how they are doing but don’t push them to talk if they don’t want to. You can invite them to hang out (but not with too many other people, especially strangers) but don’t be hurt or insulted if they refuse. If you are concerned they will harm themselves, you may need to talk to their parents, siblings, therapist, etc., if possible. Being depressed sucks for everyone…the depressed person and the people around them. Just because a depressed person pushes you away doesn’t mean they don’t love you or value your friendship and care. They just loathe themselves and don’t want to be a burden on you or anyone else. They are ill and need compassion not platitudes, tough love or exasperated comments.

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01 May 17
184

Depression: invisible yet very real

I have dealt with depression for several years now. It started off in my high school years. I felt lonely although I was surrounded by many "friends". Just listening to their voices got me angry and I got irritated easily. It didn't help that I did badly in my subjects. Everyday felt like an endless torture. I thought everything would be better once I got to university. Me not doing well in high school resulted in me losing confidence on myself. Naturally, I avoided university major which are related to subjects I took in high school. I ended up choosing a major in which I didn't have any background before. Unsurprisingly, I didn't do well in university. Competing with people who are driven in this major plus I don't have interest in the major. But some things are a little bit better in university like I met several people I can call friends. They help me go through my university life. Depression causes me to have a complete loss of interest in everything. I used to enjoy playing Sims, reading books, drawing and interior design. Depression caused me to lose interest in all of these things. Nowadays, I just feel too tired to do any of these things. Besides, I am also busy with school. I was anxious to try anything that would help me with my depression. It is almost graduation and I still don't know what I want to do with my life. I'm afraid that I will make wrong choice again and need to bear the consequences again. How can I regain back my life motivation and interests?

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About

Depression

Most people feel depressed at some time in their lives. Feelings of discouragement, frustration and even despair are normal reactions to loss or disappointment and may last for days before gradually disappearing. For some, however, depression is at the root of continuing lows. Depression is a serious, debilitating illness that intensely affects how an individual feels, thinks, and behaves. It can last for years and without treatment, can cause permanent disability. Depression affects the whole body and can alter eating and sleeping patterns, increase restlessness and overall fatigue, and even cause mysterious physical symptoms.

Tel: 1800-221 4444

https://sos.org.sg/

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