Depression Is Real

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And it can be a chronic illness.

I read an awful, awful thread on Twitter this evening by an awful, awful arrogant person, a kickboxer from Great Britain. I have no idea what prompted him to write his hateful screed, other than perhaps projection, as someone suggested.

Scanning over his Twitter right now, I see that he repeatedly mocked overweight people, agreed that depressed people are just weak, repeatedly played the “you aren’t living in a war/famine zone” card, said that you can talk yourself out of depression by only talking about happy things in your life, self-control cures depression, asserted that depressed people cling to being miserable together and “celebrate” being depressed, and claims in his bio to be an “expert on depression.” An expert on worsening depression or being bass-ackwards wrong about depression, maybe.

You can read it yourself here, unless he deletes the tweets.

I would have never known this person existed if I didn’t follow J.K Rowling. She retweeted it, with some choice comments.

I’m troubled by this raging little boy in a young man’s body running off at the mouth for several reasons.

  • What prompted him to unleash this furious condemnation of people with depression?
  • Why does he imagine that he knows better than The World Health Organization?
  • Why does he think that verbally beating up people with depression will help anyone?
  • Why does he think people would take pills every day just to function if talking about, oh, “I enjoyed my morning coffee, and I saw that the leaves are starting to change” cured depression?
  • Why does he think that people want to suffer from this life-threatening illness?
  • Why does he think people being depressed together is fun?
  • Why can’t he see that we’re not fighting to stay depressed, but fighting to be taken seriously?
  • Doesn’t he have a life?

Here’s a kid who appears to be 25, maybe. His kick-boxing career has earned him over 25,000 Twitter followers. Why is he using his platform to attack people with depression, including his own fans?

1 in 4 people in the UK (these are pre-Brexit statistics) suffer from depression. That’s 4 million people. This person has around 25,000 Twitter followers. So about 6,250 of those followers suffer from depression. A real illness that really exists. Now, many of those followers are not real fans or even real people. They’re bots, porn accounts, advertising accounts, accounts that pick up on keywords in his tweets. But let’s pretend they’re all real people, and he just mocked and berated over 6000 of his own fans.

We all know that there are a lot of people in his fan base who do suffer from depression and who also take his words very seriously. We’ve all been in the position of following some celebrity we admire on social media and seeing them post some godawful thing. Most of the time it’s a little thing that gets blown out of proportion, and those of us of a certain age will remember Winona Ryder shoplifting a lipstick and how it ended her career, but now celebrities (and politicians) can say pretty much anything and it will blow over after a week.

When you have depression and someone you admire/respect/care about mocks your illness and tells you it’s not real and that you’re weak for not overcoming depression on your own, that hurts. It hurts so much that it can send you spiraling further down into depression as you wonder what’s wrong with me, so-and-so said this isn’t real and I don’t need pills, why do I still feel so bad?

The best outcome for that scenario is the person with depression going to the doctor or hospital for help.

When I was about 20, I had a friend who was so depressed after his girlfriend broke up with him that he convinced himself that no one would ever love him again, and he walked out in front of a train.

The most troublesome thing that I found in this whole mess of arrogance and testosterone was this:

andrew tate

And this:

andrew tate 22

“Expert on depression” does not equal medical credentials. And then there is the attacking overweight people again.

This entire thread, account, even, is a powder keg. Twitter would do well to shut it down. As we know that they will not, please, if you have depression or a similar illness like OCD, anxiety, bipolar, or panic attacks, and you’re feeling upset by this clusterfuck or some other, seek medical help. Reach out to family and friends. Don’t let the opinion of any celebrity damage your life. Don’t let it destroy your life.

You’re better than they are.

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Your Friend With Depression

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Chronic long-term depression is isolating even if your friend is receiving appropriate treatment. Appropriate treatment usually includes medication, and often some form of therapy. Too often, people with depression are under-treated or not treated due to financial reasons/shame. Families can be cruel to people with chronic depression.

It’s excruciatingly difficult for people with chronic depression to open up to new people. Please do not befriend someone with chronic depression if you can’t hang in for the long haul. If emotional ups and downs, talk of hopelessness, and inability to take steps that might aid in lessening the depression frustrate you, just walk away. Befriending someone with depression, lecturing them, telling them about people who have it worse, not talking to them for days because you’re annoyed with their illness is worse than not getting close. We have plenty of peripheral friends. We’re used to peripheral friends. Feeling that we finally have a close friend and losing them because we cannot snap out of depression only sets us back.

Tough love? Do you think that we haven’t been inundated with tough love by people who came before you? Do you think, that if tough love worked, we’d still be depressed?

Also, we are not using depression to get attention. Trust me. We would much rather have no “attention” and be healthy than be depressed.

Paralyzed by depression . . . yes, in many cases. Although, your encouragement can get through to us, if you’re willing to stick it out. Many of us have been struggling in the bog of depression for so long that just lifting a foot briefly is a victory.

But don’t come into our lives and get impatient after two months (two whole months, versus decades of depression) write us off as “toxic people,” and drop us. I’ve read and heard too much happy horseshit about “only surround yourself with people who give off light because” blah blah blah something trite and stupid.

We’re not regular people. We’re not projects. We’re people with an illness, an illness that’s difficult to treat and may last the rest of our lives. We have our good days and bad days, just like anyone else with a chronic illness. We can be your dearest and most loyal friends if you make an effort to understand our illness instead of dismissing it as malingering.

 

Let Down

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Why is depression killing some of the boldest, most influential voices of my generation?

We lost Chester Bennington yesterday. It’s been just barely over two months since we lost Chris Cornell.

They were rock stars. They moved in the same circles. They performed together. They had “rock star issues.”

But the “rock star issues” seem to be pounding the life out of my generation, most visibly in the musical community.

What fucked us all up so bad? We seem to opt out in our forties and early fifties. Could it have anything to do with looking at the future and not seeing one as our parents did?

I don’t fucking know.

And the tears fall like rain
Down my face again
Oh the words you wouldn’t say
And the games you played
With my unfoolish heart
Oh I should have known this from the start

Oh the winter and spring
Going in hand in hand
Just like my love and pain
How the thought of you cuts deep within the vein
Oh this brand new skin stretched across scared terrain

I don’t want to be let down
I don’t want to live my life again
Don’t want to be lead down the same old road
So I don’t want to be let down
I don’t want to live my lies again
Don’t want to be lead down the same old road

All those years down the drain
Love was not enough when you want everything
What I gave to you and now the end must start
Oh I should have listened to my heart

‘Cause I don’t want to be let down
I don’t want to live my life again
Don’t want to be lead down the same old road
So I don’t want to be let down
I don’t want to live my lies again
Don’t want to be lead down the same old road

Oh

I don’t want to be let down
I don’t want to live my life again
Don’t want to be lead down the same old road
(I don’t want too be let down)
So I don’t want to be let down
I don’t want to live my lies again
Don’t want to be lead down the same old road
(I don’t want to be let down)
Don’t want to be lead down the same old road
(I don’t want to be let down)
Don’t want to be lead down the same old road
(I don’t want to be let down)
Don’t want to be lead down the same old road
(I don’t want to be let down)
Don’t want to be lead down the same old road
(I don’t want too be let down)
Be lead down the same old road

Dead By Sunrise – Let Down

I listened to this song over and over after I gave my ex-husband the second chance and he blew it. It is so hard to accept that this person who expressed my emotions better than I could myself suffered from the same mental illness that still tries to pull me down every single day.

The future is bleak.

“Change It”

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If you suffer from clinical depression, you’ve almost certainly heard most of these things at least once. Did hearing any of them help you, or did they just drive you further back into the dark corner where you spend most of your time?

Depression is an illness. No cutesy motivational quote or command to “snap out of it!” is going to cure it. You have good days, good weeks, and then you have very bad nights. And we’ve all been there and we’ve all heard all this crap and please try not to let it make you feel worse about yourself. Some people will never get it. But there is someone who will, and that person may very well be a doctor in the ER, so don’t fear doctors.

And don’t listen to people who belittle your depression. That leads to belittling yourself and makes the vicious cycle more vicious.

http://psychcentral.com/lib/worst-things-to-say-to-someone-whos-depressed/

Simply saying “I don’t know what to say but I can listen” is better than making someone feel worse than they already do.