A friend of mine wrote this and thought I'd pass it on to anyone that's suffering.........
Depression was described to me about 12-15 years ago as, when you know you love something but don't feel it.
I started to cry , I didn't know how I felt was 'a thing' seeing as I'd been like it for so long.
It took me over a decade to do something about it.
Do you really want to hurt me.
I worked at a God forsaken place for 5 God forsaken years. I had 4 bosses, 2 of them decided I was to blame for everything that went wrong, which was mostly caused by them . If I said th esky was blue, they would say 'no, its yellow with stripes'. they were that idiotic and had to dominate the little employee.
Like the good little person that I am, not wanting to anger my parents and for the pay(which wasn't great) I stayed.
Over the next few years things just got worse. Id seemed to have stopped having emotions, maybe to hide how badly I had been treated, I didn't want to show signs of weakness, I couldn't show how I felt at work or at home,so I just carried on as if everything was ok. All the time in my head I had the worst thoughts eating away at everything. Telling me how crap I am, Im useless, I shouldn't have my own opinions etc
Gradually being used as a verbal punch bag effected me to the point of going bonkers (in my head) Id gradually given up caring and quit my job.
So yes I felt a bit better, my parents noticed I was happier. But that's on the outside.
What happens on the outside isn't always what's going on the inside.
I will try to recall how depression feels. Please don't think Im cured, but I am a lot better.
I felt like my head was in a fish bowl.
People didn't seem real.
Its such an effort just to smile, even time with friends was a challenge. I had to think of things to say to react to a conversation or Id just sit there and say nothing. I had to act like I was interested, in most cases I was interested, I just couldn't muster up a reaction.
There were bad, negative thoughts constantly going through my head.
I felt nothing positive.
Smiling is very tricky and led to me just wanting to cry.
Anxiety levels are high in certain situations.
And yes, I was suicidal for most of that time.
Thats just a hint of it, sadly a side effect of medication is memory loss, but its not all bad, there's good to come(keep reading)
Too shy shy.
I hate talking about me(but I can type like a looney so get comfy).
I'm useless at job interviews and just as bad at talking to a doctor. Thank goodness for emails and blogs.
So 10+ years came and went, each day getting worse and worse. During that time I went through a period of hearing voices or things outside my head when I was alone, but I went through phases, the voices didn't last long and didn't say anything bad. Years went by again, I was in such a bad place I had completely broken down on the inside, I could no longer function as a human being and HAD to go to the doctors.
Tears for Fears
I had to see a doctor.It took a few days to get through, due to nerves/doctors not being available, but eventually I got through. Just making the phone call(not an appointment) was enough.
As soon as I got off the phone I was so proud of myself for doing something about it, then a split second later I burst into tears with complete and utter relief that Id started to do something about it. It was the best cry Id ever had in my entire life, I sobbed, fell to the floor, I totally broke down.
Open your heart
Eventually I spoke to a very nice doctor who invited me to an appointment in about 2 hours from the call. Yes I was fricking nervous but I was like a robot by then, I had to help myself.
I was so relieved that they believed me.
Nothing came out right, I barely said anything that was in my head.
Doctor and the Medics
I was given some tablets which took about 6 weeks to truly kick in.
I tried 3 different types over year.
Sadly one of the side effects for me is memory loss(have I already said that?)
So gradually as time went by, I started to feel better. I laughed more easily(well I laughed, I hadn't done that for ages)I smiled more easily and the negative thoughts eating away at my brain can still be heard but they are muffled. They are still there but they are in another room, with the door closed.
I started taking tablets at the start of the year, by Christmas I was off them and don't really feel like I need them.
As I said before I'm not cured. I still don't have positive feelings which is heart breaking but the negativity has seriously reduced which is great.
I told the doc about the memory loss(have I mentioned that can be a side effect) he left me with a prescription so if my mood was low I had something to try.
I should be so lucky
Since then we have had some crappy family news so my smile has been tougher to conjure up. I'm currently not on any tablets but its good to know I have something if I need it.
Some of the most entertaining people in celeb land have depression, (correct me if Im wrong) Rob Delaney, Carrie Fisher, Robin Williams, Ruby Wax and I think we would all consider them to be very popular people and fun to be around but we don't know what its like in their heads.
I think I'm trying to say that yes some people feel awkward about it(I havn't even told my family about any of this so please keep it to yourselves if you know me).
I cant give any advice to anybody who has a friend of loved one with depression. Personally a hug wouldn't have helped me but it may help someone else. Though I am always up for a hug whether it helps or not.
And please don't tell someone with depression to cheer up. THEY CANNOT HELP IT. Nobody wants to be like this, I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy(though I secretly would wish it on the person that made me this way)
Everything counts in large amounts
So, if I have inspired just one person to be brave and make a doctors appointment I would be absolutely chuffed to bits(without actually feeling it)
PLEASE MAKE THE CALL. If I can do it, anybody can.
I thoroughly recommend the books written by Ruby Wax that she has written about her mental health issues. A Mindfulness Guide for the Frazzled is particularly good.There's some good advice and an understanding as to what's happening in your brain.