One thing that gets me riled up is when people don’t take the time to understand the difference, no matter how subtle, between stress and depression. To most, those two are one and the same but this can’t be any further from the truth and once we’ve learnt to internalize the two then we will have taken a great step in understanding mental health.
Statistics show that depression has been on the rise going with the demands of modern day society. It’s becoming more and more prevalent among teens and young adults. This in turn has led to an increase in suicide incidences.
Depression is a common mental disorder, characterized by sadness, loss of interest or pleasure, feelings of guilt or low self-worth, disturbed sleep or appetite, feelings of tiredness, and poor concentration. (WHO)
I’ve struggled and seen friends struggle with depression. Trying to get over it can be tough and a lot depends on the support system you set up, both internal (self) and external (others). What experience has taught me, and what I’d like to share with others, is that you don’t have to go through the struggle alone.
For majority of us, it’s hard to open up about depression. There’s a certain stigma attached to it and even as you try to get the world to understand, you find that you don’t understand it well enough yourself. It also hinges a lot on how you were brought up. The conflict within becomes as relevant as that without.
Depression can be long-lasting or recurrent, substantially impairing an individual’s ability to function at work or school or cope with daily life. At its most severe, depression can lead to suicide. When mild, people can be treated without medicines but when depression is moderate or severe they may need medication and professional talking treatments.
You mustn’t be ashamed of seeking professional help. It took me forever to see a psychiatrist. I’ve grown up believing that, as a man, I must deal with these issues myself. You have to portray some sought of strength to the world as pretentious as it might make you feel. Maybe it works for some but what I know is that an issue ignored doesn’t just disappear. When trying to keep positive becomes a hustle, you need to do more for your own health’s sake.
Let those close to you know that you’re struggling and most of all, let us start having open conversations about the D.
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