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Author Topic: Thoughts on depression, stigma, and reaching out  (Read 537 times)

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Offline shefloats

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Thoughts on depression, stigma, and reaching out
« on: December 21, 2013, 06:55:53 PM »
Depression is like seeing an elephant in the corner... I see it there but I don't want to bring it up in case no one else sees it and thinks I've lost it. 

The Stigma surrounding mental health is almost the worst part.

I crave support love and friendship, but I just have so much trouble connecting with people.  I have issues with telling them I'm depressed. Feelings and emotions were not something I was allowed to speak about as a child.  Family issues and struggles were kept hush hush.  I wish the world could just know how awful depression is and how debilitating it can be.  I wish that my loved ones could know right now just how desperate it feels to be depressed.  I feel like no one takes my feelings seriously.  I have been suicidal before to the point where the thoughts become almost obsessive.. it's all I can think about... and yet when doctors therapists, even friends and loved ones asked me about it, it would be down played.   Forget telling anyone just how bad it is... Because on paper, my life is beautiful, truly it is. 

I just feel so profoundly 'different' like I'm not a real person anymore, just a fake going through the motions of human life and emotions.  It hinders my ability to form and maintain relationships.  I've become very avoidant.  I don't answer phones or texts or check social media.  These past few days, the only reaching out I've been able to manage is darting in and out of the chat room here. 

It all just makes me terribly sad. 

I'm sorry for rambling.  I just needed to get this off my chest.
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Offline Leo99

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Re: Thoughts on depression, stigma, and reaching out
« Reply #1 on: January 04, 2014, 07:30:02 AM »
I figured out for myself that being at peace with the idea that I DO suffer from depression and may do so for the rest of my life, brought a kind of relief. I am who I am. Depression is only a part of me, not the whole me. People who know me well love me no less for it. They might not understand it (though seeing me suffer during my depression episodes gives them a pretty good idea) but they accept it. I don't stress myself about people who don't know me. If they judge, well there, I have more important issues in my life than dealing with those strangers.
What I've also found out though is that if you're open about your condition, many people approach and share their (similar) stories. At least from my experience.
I actually gave my general practice doc a few lectures on depression when she tried to share false information with me, telling me depression is sort of a weakness. She never spoke of it in that manner again lol. After a decade of living with depression and anxiety I've also found a great psychiatrist and I'm not going back.
I guess what I'm saying is I made terms with my condition and do realize I might have to go through some more episodes in my life. But that's ok, all people struggle in one way or another. Our assertivenes, knowledge about depression and letting go the 'shame' may help future sufferers also.

Just be who you are, shefloats, don't be afraid of yourself and love and friendship will come, I'm sure of it. Wishing you all the best on your journey!
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From childhood's hour I have not been
As others were; I have not seen
As others saw; I could not bring
My passions from a common spring.
(E. A. Poe)

Offline tinam7

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Re: Thoughts on depression, stigma, and reaching out
« Reply #2 on: January 04, 2014, 09:03:55 AM »
Wonderful post, Leo. If we are bent in that direction for any number of reasons, we are likely to have to deal with it again and again. It returns like bad weather but we don't give in. I sure like that you educated the doctor.

So much goes back to childhood, but understanding does help. Others don't matter, we do. And you will find your way to strengthen yourself. You are not alone, we are here to support your efforts, your explorations.
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Offline marc

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Re: Thoughts on depression, stigma, and reaching out
« Reply #3 on: January 05, 2014, 09:08:22 AM »
Many people suffer from depression, so you are not alone. You are correct in that their is stigma attached to any
form of mental illness. I would guess that a combination of medication and therapy may help you make the most
of your life. Also possibly friends, clergy and the like may also help.
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If you're going through hell, keep going.
Never, Never, Never, give up.