I will start with this quote I found:
“Others imply that they know what it is like to be depressed because
they have gone through a divorce, lost a job, or broken up with someone.
But these experiences carry with them feelings. Depression, instead, is
flat, hollow, and unendurable. It is also tiresome. People cannot abide
being around you when you are depressed. They might think that they
ought to, and they might even try, but you know and they know that you
are tedious beyond belief: you are irritable and paranoid and humorless
and lifeless and critical and demanding and no reassurance is ever
enough. You're frightened, and you're frightening, and you're "not at
all like yourself but will be soon," but you know you won't.”
Kay Redfield Jamison,
An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and Madness
I felt this was very accurate description. Often people say I am just depressed because I had a bad day at work, or I am depressed because I failed my test.
But Depression is not a adjective. It is not just a word used to describe how upset or sad someone may feel. It is a real illness that affects millions of people each and every day.
So many of us with this illness feel alone. Often you are -not- really alone but depression makes you feel like you are, even in a crowded room. I know because I have felt like this so many times in my life.
So often love ones can't understand this. You try to explain but to them it makes no sense. They are right there, they love you, they can't understand why you don't feel it. Well nether can you. You try to feel the love, try to tell yourself you are not alone but the world seems so dark, so cold. You don't feel the love, or caring, or really much of anything. It is like all the good and light is sucked away from you.
It is hard though to tell yourself you are loved and you are not alone, when your mind says nobody gets you. When it tells you nobody understands how hard it is to be you, to go through what you do. When you look in the mirror and see a stranger looking back. When you can't control your thoughts and they just keep coming and you try to get rid of them but they keep coming back, over and over and over again until you hate yourself.
You look at yourself as weak because you lose control and lash out at those you love or you pull away from everyone and make them feel as if you don't care. They can't see you pull away because you are so scared of hurting them yet -again-.
You put a fake smile on your face and laugh at all the right moments when inside you feel as if you are dying. This deep painful ache that eats you alive. And on the outside you act as if nothing is wrong when on the inside you are screaming and pleading for something to take it all away to put you out of your misery because you don't know how much longer you can continue to pretend.
That is Depression, an emptiness you feel in side filled only with negative thoughts that eat away at you until you are willing to do anything to get rid of the pain. I have turned to both Sex and Drinking to try to fill this void, to take away the never ending thoughts even for just a few moments. Others do drugs, cut themselves, put themselves in dangerous situation or worse.
Having someone there to understand helps, knowing that you have a illness helps, educating yourself and others in ways to cope, seeking out a professional for advice, and when necessary even taking medication are all ways to help.
Please if you have depression and have not done so already seek professional help. If you know someone who is depressed please encourage them to seek help and educate yourself, stand by them, show them they are not alone even if they act like they don't want you to.
Depression is hard on everyone, the person who is depressed and those who care and love that person but we are stronger together.