Take Depression Seriously

We should take depression seriously, and although nowadays it is much more acceptable to discuss it, it sometimes still finds itself on the taboo shelf, out of sight, and out of any conversations. When you’re not affected by depression or have never suffered it, it is hard to relate to someone who is going through it. I get that, absolutely.

I also get the part of someone being depressed and finding no understanding with his or her loved ones; and that sucks, a lot. This is why we need to get this topic out. It isn’t talked about enough, it isn’t understood, it is still seen as something you “can handle”, when in reality it is not.

Depression needs to be put on the table, and everyone sitting at that table needs to take a few slices out of it and see how it works on the inside, in order to be able to help or be a support from the outside.

Take Depression Seriously

Depression does not allow you any control, it swallows you up, devours you, and commands your thoughts to go to your darkest depths, darkness you may not even have known you possessed. Depression is hard to deal with and it isn’t something you should tackle alone. When you suffer from depression, you need to seek professional help, as soon as possible.

“Depression feels like unquenchable hatred for a faceless, nameless, undetectable and therefore undefeatable enemy.” Quote, by Lokian Milhouse, in “Why Miller Turned Killer”

Note: these numbers are for the US

Crisis hotline in Mexico: 525-510-2550

Depression Warning Signs

  • Feelings of hopelessness and dispair
    • Feeling down is normal, but when you feel the above mentioned symptoms, you may have depression
  • Feeling lifeless, apathetic, empty. (Men in particular can feel angry and restless)
  • Loss of interest in daily activities
  • Insomnia or oversleeping
  • Self hatred
  • Anger, irritability
  • Reckless behavior
  • Concentration problems
  • Significant weight loss or weight gain

Depression can lead to suicide. It is a major risk factor. This is why, if you think you have depression or you know someone who suffers from depression, get help immediately!

sad

Warning Signs for Suicide

Note: these numbers are for the US

Crisis hotline in Mexico: 525-510-2550

Depression holds a suicide risk. People who are depressed are much more likely to consider and even plan for suicide. The despair, the loneliness, the helplessness, the feeling of fighting the whole world can make suicide seem like the only escape from pain. So, this is why I repeat, if you’re depressed, please, please, please, seek help. Talk to someone. Call a hotline, make an appointment with a therapist. It’s important to get help. You cannot battle depression alone. Period.

talk to someone

Warning signs for suicide:

  • Talking about harming or killing yourself
  • An unusual preoccupation with death
  • Expressing feelings of hopelessness, being trapped
  • Calling or seeing people to say goodbye
  • Claiming things like “You all would be better off without me.”
  • Extreme reckless behavior (for example, climbing high poles, speeding through red lights, etc)

Depression has different symptoms in men, women, and teenagers.

anger

Men may tend to display anger, aggression, substance abuse, and reckless behavior. Fatigue, irritability, insomnia, loss of interest in work and private life are also common complaints.

Women’s common depression symptoms are sudden increase in weight, overeating, sleeping too much, and excessive feelings of guilt. Additionally, we also have to consider hormones during menstruation, pregnancy, and menopause, which has no small effect either.

Teenagers often display irritability, anger, and irritation when they are depressed. Headaches, stomachaches, and other physical pains may also be possible symptoms.

rage

The previously described symptoms may come as a surprise, because depression is usually related to sadness, but it is much more than that. Although sadness is definitely a part of depression, it is not the only factor, and depression is something that you have no control over, it tends to control you, whether you want to or not. This is why you must seek help if you suffer from depression. I know that I’m saying this for the third time in this article, but I am only doing this because it is so important.

I suffered from depression when I went through burnout from 2016 to 2018, and believe me, it is hell. It is not something you want to deal with on your own. Get help. That makes this my fourth repetition, sorry, but it’s so important to stress this, even if I may sound repetitive.

Possible Treatments for Depression

So, I promise not to repeat myself anymore 😉 but I will list some suggestions for you if you suffer depression or you know someone who is going through depression.

  • DO NOT tell them to “get over it” or that “we all got stuff to deal with”. That statement never helps, it just makes things worse. Besides, you do not know the person’s life and inner struggles, so do not judge.
  • Reach out to other people. Do not remain isolated, because isolation fuels depression. This is the time when you need your friends, loved ones, people who matter. Even if the person you talk to cannot really help you. Listening often provides more help than expected. Sometimes, listening is all someone needs, without judging. listen
  • Spend time in nature: go for walks, spend time with your dogs, cats, or other pets you may have. Take on a new hobby or pick up an old hobby you used to enjoy. Even if you don’t feel like it at first, just do it, it will help make you feel better about yourself and about life.
  • Eat a healthy diet. The right food can work miracles for your mood and mind. See my article about healthy food for a healthy mind for more info.
  • If it gets really bad, please call any of the hotline’s numbers mentioned in this article or find the hotline number for your particular country or area. Additionally, make an appointment with a therapist, they can help too. There is no shame in seeing a therapist, they are trained to see you through this.

Final Thoughts

Depression, if it is not dealt with at once, can grow and become life-controlling. I’d like to end this article with a quote from “Why Miller Turned Killer, by Lokian Milhouse: “Depression, if untreated, will grow and darken and decay your mind until you’re a raving p*ssed off mess. Or worse.”

“But thankfully depression can be treated.”

Amazon disclaimer: as an Amazon associate I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases at no extra cost to you. 

This book I’m reading is not specifically about depression (although it is definitely an important part of the story) but about a healthy mind that slips from anger to darkness to homicide (a true story). Symptoms of depression are clearly described in this book, and although it may seem like an extreme example, it is not. Symptoms can include hurting others or yourself. Depression needs treatment. If you know anyone going through this, do not hesitate to get professional help for them.

24 thoughts on “Take Depression Seriously”

  1. Really great post and such an important subject. Especially with all that is going on in the world with covid and people being more isolated then ever before and not being able to see their loved ones or get out an enjoy life like they used to.

    Great tips on how to deal with depression, I have found when I am feeling down just getting out for a walk helps. I also find eating well, getting lots of sleep and exercising are of great benefit.

    It is a great thing that now a days this topic is more out in the open then ever before and people feel comfortable talking about it.

    Thanks for sharing.

    Reply
    • Hi Robb,

      It really is great that nowadays people feel more comfortable talking about it, I agree.
      Going for a walk is wonderful and boosts your spirits, I also often take a walk, either a short or a longer one 🙂 Now, during these lockdowns, we need to keep on working on our mental health.
      Thank you for your comment!

      Reply
  2. Hi, Christine,

    Brilliant post, I will share it on my social media accounts so that more people can read it because I know everyone needs this information in these uncertain times we all live in.

    I totally agree with you that there’s a need for professional help and instead of feeling ashamed, one must feel proud that he/she has the courage to fight this condition with the help of specialists.

    Thank you for sharing today, I enjoyed every word of your post!

    Cheers,
    Ionut

    Reply
  3. Depression is the hidden killer because many people suffer with it but either, don’t know they are a sufferer or ignore the signs and don’t get help.

    Even close family members either don’t see the signs amongst their fellow family members or just push it to one side, like, “Don’t be silly and pull yourself together will you”? Been there myself.

    Many just keep it to themselves and try to handle it in their own way, and I guess this boils down to how strong that personalty is.

    However, I personally knew of 8 people that took their lives and nobody had a clue why or even noticed the signs, so just what is it?

    Why people take the ultimate sacrifice I guess we will never know.

    Thank you for sharing what is a very important subject.

    Reply
    • The hidden killer, that’s really a good way to put it. So often the signs are not noticed or they are ignored and then when it happens no one knows why someone took his/her life … which is why we need to keep spreading the word about depression.
      Thank you for your comment!

      Reply
  4. Hi Christine, this is a very important topic. The longer COVID keeps us apart from family and friends the more important it is to reach out to those we love. We are fortunate to live in a time when there is so much technology available. Reach out to your friends and family members. Call, zoom, skype, or facetime. Taking advantage of video calls is so much better than just a text or call.
    What are your thoughts about today’s technology?
    I know I have a daughter and a son who have both struggled with depression through the years. My daughter-in-law struggled with post-partum depression.
    I know it isn’t easy but it needs to be talked about.
    Thanks for bringing attention to this subject?

    Reply
    • Hi Deb,

      I agree that we are fortunate to live in a time where we have so much technology, it can help keep us close to our loved ones, even if they’re far. Zoom is great to talk, skype as well, I haven’t tried facetime yet, I use whatssapp video call as well. It makes all the difference, especially now, I agree. On the other hand, all this technology also takes us away from friends, because before covid many of us spent hours texting or staring at the phone screen instead of spending quality time with friends. So, I have mixed feelings about it. I am, however, grateful for technology, especially now during these times.
      Thank you for your comment!

      Reply
  5. Depression can be a very bad thing as you highlighted over here.
    Most people never know the extent it can have on someone’s live. I had a collegaue who had didn’t really show signs of suicide but all of a sudden we heard he was no more. I think others accumulate it inside themselves and then it explodes.

    Reply
  6. Hi Christine,

    Yes, suffering from depression isn’t good to talk about, but seeing a doctor is definitely needed. Although I don’t have the experience, I still think we all need help sometimes, especially when we have the symptoms listed in this article. Considering the current tough time caused by the virus, we should be more sympathetic when someone around us is down and blue. If we could help them out, maybe we get more chances to avoid tragedies.

    Thanks for sharing,
    Matt

    Reply
    • Hi Matt,

      I agree, especially during these times we should be more sympathetic to people who are suffering from depression. Now during lockdown, depression has risen considerably …

      Reply
  7. Christine,

    Thanks for this important article!

    You’re right; depression is more talked about these days, but it’s still considered a taboo topic and deserves to be understood and addressed. Your explanation of depression and suicidal symptoms are great—and accurate—and I appreciate that you included the crisis hotline numbers for anyone who stumbles across your article seeking help.

    Your recommendations for those who have loved ones suffering from depression are very helpful, as are the treatment options for those who are suffering themselves. It’s such a great thing to know that while depression is terrifying, whether it’s you or a loved one suffering, it CAN be treated. Help is available.

    Thank you for sharing!

    Best,
    Femi

    Reply
  8. Hi Christine,

    Firstly I’d like to thank you for this article. Depression has zapped the life out of many people. Based on what I’ve read from your article, I realise that there were many times I’ve been depressed and not noticed that’s what I was going through at those times.

    As you’ve said, depression is something that seem to be shelved in society, and many times people don’t want to speak about it. We live in a very fast paced world, where we sometimes forget to slow down, and relish meaningful conversations that are uplifting and transformative.

    I think we need to pay more attention to the signs of depression you’ve mentioned. Doing so may help to prevent someone from committing suicide.
    Because it’s easy for someone in a depressed state to get caught up in the endless loop of negative thoughts and emotions. So it’s our duty to be vigilant about our mental and emotional well-being and that of our family, friends, and the wider community at large.

    Thanks again for this informative resource

    Blessings and Gratitude
    Mikhail

    Reply
    • Hi Mikhail,

      True, we live in a fast paced world and we hardly ever slow down or stop. We need to pay more attention to the signs. We often don’t even realize what is going on with us until it’s too late.
      Thank you for your comment!

      Reply
  9. Christine,

    Depression is awful and I will admit, I’ve been through it, along with many of my family. My daughter went through it when she was 15, but in the worst and scariest way. She had attempted suicide twice when she was 15. At one point, I had to admit her to keep her alive since she had attempted it while my husband and I were at work. It was right after we won full custody of her.

    My husband hadn’t seen her since her bio Mom took her at the age of 5 in the middle of the night and left to AZ with her. She had wiped out the accounts to take her daughter. He hadn’t seen her since she was 5.

    When we first got together, Jane (we’ll use this name) was only 10 years old. I knew about her through our conversations when we first started dating. He had asked my advice on how he should proceed with Jane. Saying that the only conversations he had were with her Mom, and she had told him that Jane didn’t want anything to do with him. She had a new Dad, was happy in their new house and simply didn’t want to see her bio Dad.

    I explained my situation when I was 9 and my bio Dad tried to force me to see him but it was an odd meeting. I only knew my Mom and step Dad growing up, not my bio Dad. When I first met him, he tried to force religion on me, saying that I was the Devil’s daughter because I wasn’t Christian.

    Anyway, since I knew what it was like to have a person try to force a relationship, I told my husband that if Jane wanted to see him at 10, she would find a way.

    Anyway, one night at 2am, he got a phone call. I was asleep, so I only heard crying. I asked him to leave the room, and he did. The next day, he said it was his daughter Jane. She wanted to see him. He said that he was set to pick her up from her cousins house that day at noon.

    I met Jane when she was 13 that day. She cried and cried telling my husband that she had been trying to get a hold of him for 8 years. She thought that he wanted nothing to do with her because her Mom always told Jane that her Dad had a new wife (Me) and children with me (not true, I can’t have kids) and that we were happy.

    Jane was lied to, and so was my husband. They found each other after 8 years.

    Then, we learned of how her life really was. Full of abuse. Every kind imaginable. We called the police, child services, the courts. We filed restraining orders, and started the court proceedings.

    We learned of heroine use, child abuse that gave me nightmares and sexual abuse that was ruining Jane’s entire life.

    So, we did what we thought we should and start on getting legal custody. Jane was happy, we thought – until the fateful day when we received a phone call from my neighbor that she attempted suicide in the bathtub and was asleep and she couldn’t wake her up.

    We called 911 and they were able to bring her back. This was during our court battle.

    We put her in a part of the local hospital that watches suicide persons, and she was there for about 6 months. We felt terrible, but helpless on how to keep her safe.

    It’s now been 5 years since then, she’s 20 and has a baby on the way. She still fights depression – mainly when she continues the relationship with her bio Mom.

    But I know that she can’t help it. It just takes over for her and she becomes lost. I try to keep daily contact with her, to know that she’s safe and is going okay. But sometimes, with depression, it just takes a life of it’s own. It’s very, very scary when it does come to the point where they don’t want to continue on.

    Jane still has it rough sometimes, she still goes through tough times. But you’re right when you can’t say, “Get over it.” There’s not “Getting over it”. You can get THROUGH it, but you can’t ever really get OVER it.

    Sorry for the long comment. I wanted to share our story and Jane’s especially. Kids have it more rough then parents like to admit. We have to LISTEN to our children when they’re trying to tell us. Even when the “Tell” is as scary as Jane’s was.

    Thanks for sharing this!

    Katrina

    Reply
    • Hi Katrina,

      It’s just horrible that Jane’s bio mum lied to both Jane and your husband, making each believe that the other wanted nothing to do with the other … And then all the abuse she went through … It isn’t easy to get over … It may take a long time to get over this …
      We have to listen to our children, very true, we should really listen.
      I’m glad that both you and your husband are there for her, that she has support in the both of you!

      Reply
  10. Thanks for sharing this post. Depression and mental health is a very serious and concerning topic that needs more attention given to it.

    I just read about a teenager girl in my area who committed suicide, such a tragedy and one that people have a hard time understanding how it could happen. Very sad. The worst part was that her guidance counselor saw the signs and took her to the hospital for treatment but the hospital failed big time and let her down with how they handled her situation.

    Appreciate you sharing this information, hopefully people will become more and more aware of how serious it is.

    Reply
    • Hi Rob,
      What happened to the teenage girl in your area is really sad. I wonder if even trained professionals sometimes fail to see the signs?
      I also hope that people will become more aware of it. It is so common and still so misunderstood …

      Reply
  11. This is a highly sensitive topic for those who suffer from it. I totally get it how one can feel overwhelmed one minute and cut off the next. Depression is real! If you have come this far looking for a solution then you are on a track to seek help, please go for it. Speak to your doctor or health professional, but keep talking. You will get to help you need. Just don’t lose hope.

    Wishing you a happy and fulfilled life.

    Reply
  12. Most of us feel this way from time to time for short periods of time. Clinical depression is a mood disorder in which feelings of sadness, loss, anger, or frustration interfere with daily life for a period of a few weeks or more. And I know that to help relatives in friends in this situation we need to be empathetic and never overlook their struggles.

    Reply

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