DEPRESSION: WHEN HAPPINESS AND A ZEST FOR LIFE BECOMES A CHORE
By the author of How to Get Over a Breakup.
Let’s get one thing perfectly clear upfront – let’s change the stigma that depression is sadness, and people with depression just need to stop being so selfish and ‘cheer up’. Depression is no more 'sadness' than narcissism is selfishness, or cancer is pain, or death is crying, or paralysis is a wheelchair, or bad food is a stomachache, or love is heartbreak. I just wanted to clear that up. So many people think depression is just being overly sad, but it's not. Depression may cause sadness, as cancer causes pain, narcissism causes selfishness, death causes crying, paralysis causes the need for a wheelchair, bad food causes a stomachache, and love lost can cause heartbreak. However, depression, in itself, is not sadness.
Depression is the ‘negative’ of one’s world. It is the deletion of the color, the muting of the music, the slowing down of life’s energy and dulling of the senses. The depressed individual finds no pleasure in anything, and fails to see the ‘possibility of pleasure occurring’ in the future. Why bother showering, why bother going to work, why bother eating, why bother dating, why bother lifting my eyelids…? This is how depression feels. It is an all-consuming lack of verve, the death of your ‘zest’ for life; you have become deflated. It’s as though someone drilled a hole in your soul and all your pizzazz just drained right out. “Who cares?” “Why bother?” “So what?” “And, so..?”
Depression isn’t caused by sadness; sadness is a result of depression. Just as a broken leg isn’t caused by pain, but pain is the result of a broken leg. But what causes depression? Oh, so many different things! There are many types of depression, including some of my very own observations and ideas on the subject, and each has its own unique cause. And, just as unique and individual are the many specific ways to manage or cure it. Therapy, medications, even self-awareness … or the combination of all, are just some ways we have all used to control or manage depression. Key to any program’s success, though, is one’s ability to ‘accept’ their depression. More on that later.
Medications work well for many forms of depression, but each state of depression is as unique as the person who is suffering with it. While medications work for many, they are not a cure-all, but rather a ‘hide-all’. Some medications work to fight depression as they create a sense of ‘apathy’ … this works well for those who suffer from depression due to their overabundance of emotional sensations (stress, fears, worries, anger, indignation, grief, etc.). In addition, there is often a direct correlation between above average intelligence and depression. Perhaps the overly active brain thinks and ponders too much and becomes overburdened or overloaded and simply shuts down, and medications that create the feelings of apathy help slow it down to a normal range? But for others, whose very depression is apathy, medications to create more apathy may have a numbing, dissociative effect on them. Oftentimes it takes many months – even years – of hit-or-miss and trial-and-error to find the exact method to help each individual and his or her individual symptoms and needs.
I do not believe that any one depression is exactly like another, nor are any depressions all linked to the same cause. It is baffling how so many people and even trained doctors can jumble them all into the same one classification. I mean, seriously? To me, depressive mindsets are as unique and individual as a fingerprint. In fact, here are some of my thoughts and my observations on various types of depression. I believe some are self-imposed, but many are not. Maybe something will hit home with you?
CONTINUE ON TO PART 2 >>
Other articles on this site by this author:
How Women Become Bitter
If you want to be lonely, hook up with a narcissist.
When You feel Loneliness in a Relationship
To heal from a broken heart, read my ebook, How to Get Over a Breakup.
Advice on Breakups