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Depression - In My Words

An Outsider Looking In

Posted on
Craig Chambers / Via

First of all I should say that I am not depressed, but I am around it a lot. I am not going to name anyone I know. If someone suffers from this then it is their choice to tell people. It is a big part of their life and it is none of my business unless they want to make it my business. The main reason I wanted to do this post is because I feel it is a topic spoken about a lot - but rarely in the right way. I am not saying I have all the answers, this is purely my opinion.

Depression is a mental illness and it is incredibly hard to watch someone suffer from it. They become a shell of the person that they used to be. They lose a lot of their personality and it can seem on some day's that you can't break them out of it. The worst thing I have found out is asking someone what is wrong, they can't explain it. You get the obligatory 'I'm fine' response. I have never realised how much meaning the word 'fine' has. It doesn't mean they are feeling well, happy or the dictionary definition of fine. It can mean the exact opposite and it is a word that covers up a lot of pain, it is a word used instead of a whole book of negative words. They don't want to burden anyone else with their real thoughts.

A way I have thought of depression is running down an endless corridor in the dark. You can't see the end of it and you can't see a way out but you keep on going further and further. Its heartbreaking to watch. I want to help but there is no way. Making them laugh doesn't stop it, making them talk doesn't stop it and distracting them doesn't stop it. It is a part of them. One thing I have developed a hatred for is people using the word 'depressed' as on off the cuff remark for when they are sad about something. No you are not depressed! Depression is a mental illness, often sparked by an event or even sometimes passed down through a family. It affects the ability to think clearly, to feel anything. 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.

I hear a lot about how depressed people should just 'snap out of it' or 'get over it'. This is possibly the worst thing you could say. You don't think they are trying? You don't think it kills them a little bit more everyday when they have to take a pill just to function in every day life? They see people getting on with things and they crave this. Depression is real. Just because you've never had it doesn't make it imaginary. So if you know someone with depression show some compassion. It is not something they want and they sure don't want attention based on the fact they have a mental illness. Treat them normally when you find out; they are still the same person. Depression sometimes is not just inside it can show in other ways and in some cases deadly. Physical symptoms such as nausea, vomiting, fatigue, chronic pain, diarrhea, insomnia etc. are common symptoms of major depression.

Yes, we all have our own shit going on - so make sure you get the help you require. Don't judge someone who may be going through something aswell, something more extreme. Don't cast it off as attention seeking because it isn't. I don't want to be dramatic but your negative comment could be the last thing they needed to make an extreme decision ...

I am fully aware than I am not one who should comment on this topic, I am one of the lucky ones who have not had to suffer. I don't have it but I live with it every day. I would never ask for sympathy for my situation because it is nothing compared to what others have to go through. This post was me just wanting to share, a perspective on depression that people who do not have depression have. I claim no ownership or right to speak about this.

Sabrina Benaim - "Explaining My Depression to My Mother"

View this video on YouTube

This spoken word poem by Sabrina Benaim is so honest, so beautiful, so frightening. I have shown this to someone very close to me who suffers from depression, with much trepidation, and she related too much to it then she wanted to. I applaud her bravery for this performance, it touched me more than I thought it would.

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