Turning depression around

Here I Go Again On My Own

on 26/09/2013

Depression is an intensely isolating experience.  It makes us feel uncomfortably secluded in a crowd, entirely alone in an overwhelming world.  We withdraw from our social circle and into our own head so that the only voice we hear is our own.  We feel that no-one can understand what we’re going through, and that we don’t deserve anyone’s attention or time.  We make ourselves pariahs because it’s the only way we know how to face up to, or rather hide from, our environment.

The truth is that we’re far from being alone.  Statistics show that one in four of us will suffer from some kind of mental illness at some point in our lives.  That means that out of every four other people we know, one of them will, unfortunately, experience something similar to what we’re facing at some point in their lives.  They might have already been there, and not been able to talk about it.  What holds us back from telling our friends and family how we’re feeling?  What is the worst reaction we can expect, when the chances of sharing this horribly common ground are so high?

If we can’t approach our nearest and dearest, why can’t we call a stranger on a support line or follow an online support forum? 

Not everyone is open to discussing depression, mental health, or even health in general, and people with depression struggle more than most when rejected.  By the same token, not everyone is comfortable discussing concerns of a financial, professional, or relationship nature, but that doesn’t hold us back from raising them with others. Lots of us get squeamish over simple physical illnesses like tummy bugs.  Times are changing though, and there’s more publicity about depression than there used to be so more people are more receptive.  It still isn’t enough, but the only way we can make people hear us is by giving them something to listen to.

When you’re ready to take the risk, raise your voice as well as your own concerns.  There’s nothing selfish about asking for it.  We all feel alone when we only have depression for company.  You’ll find that you’re really not alone when you ask for the help that is out there.  And you’ll help someone else feel less alone.


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