Depression, in my own words.

You can’t explain to someone who hasn’t been there what it’s like to wake up, and the black curtain of storm clouds have suddenly dropped around you. How do you face the people around you, silently mouthing to each other “again?”. How can you explain that the objectively irrational impulses seem subjectively rational? That you understand that you’re not OK, but there’s nothing you can do to change it, while the world goes on making demands as if you still felt “normal”.

Your partner still wants you to be able to be there for her. The kids still want to get hugs from you – and they still need to eat. The boss still wants you to output widgets. The bank still wants you to make payments on the credit cards you used to survive when things went pear-shaped last time. The landlord still wants his rent. 

There are two ways things can go from here. Sometimes with a good night’s sleep (or two, or more), and some looking after yourself, things will be OK again, and you’ll pick up your stuff, and keep moving forwards.

Sometimes, things don’t get better. The wiring isn’t just on the fritz, it’s burnt out. If you ask for help, they’ll insist on chemical assistance. They don’t really understand quite why or how the chemicals work, but “they should help”. They might (will) have side effects. The cure might end up being worse than the disease. If that one doesn’t work, they have others. Or a cocktail of medications, each one to deal with the side effects of another. That way lies its own unique madness.

With the meds, they might prescribe talking. Lots of talking, in the vain hope that like the infinite monkeys with their infinite typewriters might turn out some Shakespeare, if you say enough words for long enough, everything might fall into place. Sometimes they’re good at listening, sometimes they’re not. With the right person, it helps.

Some sift your words carefully, picking out the little nuggets of truth that help you understand a little better who you are. Others nod, grunt, and write you another prescription. I’ve known both. And it’s expensive to sit in a little room and talk. When you’re in a situation where you need to sit in a little room and talk, there’s a good chance that you’re not in a position to be able to afford it.

Fortunately, for me, most days now resemble ordinary. I wake up. I stare at the face in the mirror worn with lines I don’t remember collecting, and stubble that feels like it belongs on someone older than me. I go to work, and try to fit into “normal” like a cheap suit that I bought in a hurry and can’t take back.

But occasionally, there are those days. Days where the mask is tissue-paper thin. Surviving the day is an act of will that leaves a lingering exhaustion that seeps into your bones. Like a drowning man in a flash flood, you wrap yourself around the hope that the waters will recede soon, and you’ll be safe and dry again.

At least until the next deluge.


Postscript, 21/09/08

  • Dirk

    The only thing I have ever replied on or posted a thread about was n funny video, but let me tell you there is nothing funny about being depressed thou I believe my depression is not at a serious point I know its there. I know the feeling of not feeling worthy I just asked myself last night what am I doing here what is my purpose. I think Phil hit the hammer on the nail with his description on how you can’t understand how it feels if you haven’t been there.
    I believe depression is more complicated then most people can understand. Different circumstance effect different people, not everybody is depressed over the same reason. Some hate there jobs others are in a difficult relationship. I’m no doctor but believe that depression works on a snowball effect, unless something really bad happens to you you don’t get serious depression on day 1 it builds up in you growing stronger and stronger each day sucking the energy from your body and the will to go on with your day as like the author said as”normal”.I don’t believe in pharmaceutical drugs as in answer purely on the condition my mother is at in her live from having chosen this route. A few people have said that changing your life will help like getting another job and changes like that, but that is not always possible.
    I don’t have the cure for depression but know that most of it must consist with our everyday lives. You get up go to work or take the kids to school come home late and tired and go to sleep. and a lot of people do this everyday of there lives. working and sleeping getting no joy out of life were living to pay the bills at the end of the month. I believe that changing your surroundings can help you motivate yourself and see the world in a different light. So make a decision to not follow your everyday life and see the world for what it is. Go to a lake or forest a mountain range or the coast if your close enough(i’m not)even if you work till saterday go on sunday’s but break your routine breath some fresh air and be amazed in the creation of earth itself and know that you were put on this earth meaning you must be important in some way.

  • Becka

    Thank you so much for this.

  • Jacquie

    I remember those days. The days of the cold light and the nothingness. When waking up each morning was like a thousand deaths, when there was a glass wall between me and the rest of the world, and I never really heard. Never really saw. Just existed, in the vain hope that one person would have the insight to reach out and say, “are you all right?” But of course that never happened. Of course I turned to pain, to death as my solution. And to psychologists, psychiatrists, and none of it helped. But it got better. It took years, but it got better. And now I’m a happier person than I was 10 years ago, Before. I agree when you say that it can’ be described to those who haven’t experienced it. No one else will “get” it, they’ll call you a hypochondriac or melodramatic or any of a million other derogatory terms that don’t help one bit. Thank you for your contribution to a world that can only be understood through the most horrifying of experiences.

  • For years and years I had maybe one good day every few months. Slowly, with lots of work and lots of different treatment, I started having more and more good days. I remember the day I realized I was having more good days than bad days and it encouraged me to go on. Now, I have the rare bad day in a world of good…as long as I stay with treatment. There is hope. Your blog gives a lot of understanding…a place where people can start. Good work.

  • Aaron Michael

    I’ve spent night and day in this
    Frightened, this is what its like to be nameless,
    I’ve changed, this isn’t how i used to be
    Losing sleep along with all of the much more useful things,
    My beauty seems to have gone with my personality
    my closest friends keep hoping that they can reverse this perverse reality
    but I’m gone now, you think they’d understand

  • BC

    Very accurate and well written, thank you…

  • Randi

    Amazing….i love it! U just can’t describe it to other people especially when they are like well i have to deal with this and i’m stressed about that….it’s hard for them to accept and understand that even if there is nothing going wrong with your life and there’s no reason you should be unhappy that u are extremely depressed for no reason whatsoever!

  • Rebecca

    Very well said. I remember distinctly in 8th grade stopping what I was doing, being overwhelmed with an empty feeling. It was like I was a jar of peanut butter completely scraped out and used up on the inside, ok looking on the outside. Suicidal thoughts would come at the drop of a hat and soon became an everyday occurrence. Now that I’m living on my own, even though I have money issues, I can honestly say that I’m no longer living with depression

  • Nikky

    I love this so much. It really says what i haven’t been able to for as long as I can remember. It’s so hard to describe or explain how I feel on a daily basis and this really helped me see a way I can explain it to myself, which is the hardest part. It truely brought me to tears because it’s like it’s written about me and my life. I’ve been in denial for so long and seeing this has really made me come to terms with it and realize that i’m not a freak or crazy but i do have some serious issues i have to work out. Reading this gives me alot of hope that whoa alot of other people are dealing with this and i can get through it.

  • b

    Thank you for sharing. This was beautifully written.

  • b

    It helps ease my loneliness and fear to know that others understand the life I’ve been living. Though for me it’s more a shadow of existence.

  • Dearest Depression,
    Thank you for sharing, it helps people like me, who also suffers from chronical depression. Not only do I relate to everything you said but I also understand word for word the depth of the madness you experience daily as well. Depression runs on both sides of my family, so i was doomed no matter what. I knew at a young age something was different, I would at times isolate from other kids, and write songs expressing my pain, but always ending with a message of hope. At the age of eight, had to be hospitalized because I awoke to being paralyzed from the waist down, had no feelings in my legs what so ever. Two specialist told me I would never walk again and a third Docter diagnosed me as having a disease called psuenlienhendric sydrome and said 3% male boys rare disease that usually went away as it was outgrown. Thank God I eventually out grew it. I went from a ballerina, gymnist, tap dancer, to a frail, waif. Needless to say I have not really been the same anymore. It seemed from kindergarden on up I was always in trouble like having to write 1000 times I will not talk during the classroom. I either over excelled in subjects I loved, or under achieved in things that didnt interest me. Back then, nobody, not even teachers would listen to a child. I was labeled the bad seed, and no one would let me explain how I felt. I wasn’t really a destructive child, but was labled that too because I liked to take things apart and put them back together, I loved the challenge and craved knowledge. I could never keep my opinions to myself and felt that I needed to express them always, I have always fought for truth and fairness, and again was labled lucy from charlie brown. Also at the age eight-nine years old, our family often went camping to lake hughes to wear the park attendant who everyone trusted would have me in his aluminum trailer with no pants on sitting in his lap fondleing me and making me do things i didnt understand paraylzing me until you could hear my family looking and yelling for me and when he would let me go i would run so fast and become so happy to see my family again, subconciously i think i knew how lucky i was to be alive, the camping thing went on for years until the park attendant died. Then starting my teen years a wonderful step dad since the age seven turned on us like a ravid dog with rabies. The abuse with beatings from tree branches, iron skillets, belt, hands it didn’t matter, he took his anger and misery out on my brother and me. He started going out to the bars and drinking every night coming home drunk, coming into my room and would either cry about how sorry he was for the beating the shit out of me or i would wake up to him touching me and him telling me how much he loved me and had abnormal feelings for me, if i screamed he would cover my mouth and threatened if i told anyone he would kill me and i believed him. During high school I was on the gymnastics team, track team and also a cheerleader, daily he would tell me i was no good, a fat pig, etc, etc. Finally at the age of 16, he had an affair with the barmaid at the bar he went to nightly. That was god doing for us. Sad to say he inheirted alot of money, blew most of it on cocaine, went to have surgeory after being off a year from work injury related, he forgot to mention to the Doctors his little cocaine habit and had been up for several days, they put him under and after his surgeory he awoke to being a vegtable and his new wife pulled the plug on him instantly. Later that year was admitted to cottage hospital for an eating disorder, I was 5’7 and weighed 88 pounds. The reason why i am writing all this is…..well i am not exactly sure, but what i have shared is just the top of the iceburg. You see with many years of counseling, and some anti depression meds, like welbriuton, 2 recovery homes later, losing everything a few times, living homeless on the beach or in a storage shed, having a miscarriage 5 months pregnant with twins 2 times 2 years apart from each other, days of not wanting to live, bed ridden at times of up to 3 months, I never gave up that little bit of hope somehow somewhere that i carried with me as if it lived in my front pocket. I am 43 now, i belong to a support group that i love and trust, I pray and meditate daily, if i become overwhelmed or full of fear or just have a life obstacle, i reach out, i pick up that 1000 pound phone and 9 times out of ten i hear a solution and sometimes even feel better, im not perfect and there are times that i dont reach out, and its a learning experience, but at least i am aware and i do have choices and i choose to keep learning and educate myself on this disease i have, and lots of positive affirmations. Not all my days are good, but i can honestly say i do have alot more good than bad, and its okay to have down days thats life, life happens and its in session, and now when i see a grateful homeless person or a young kid with no arms or legs or just all the people that die daily, i ask myself what do i really have to be depressed about? Really…nothing absoultly nothing. I will pray for you my friend daily, just be easy and kind to yourself with lots of self-love. It is a daily effort and it sounds like your in the right direction, that took alot of courage for you to open up and share your story with us, when you talk about whats going on with you to another the power of it seems to lift away, we are only as sick as our secrets and today i choose to have no secrets. Is hope a drug we need to get off of? I think not. Never give up or lose hope.

  • Wow. That is so beautiful, and accurate. My husband and I both suffer from bipolar disorder, and I spent my childhood being told not to be “so sensitive” and to “get over it”. My teens were spent on medication, and now I live my life wading through it one day at a time, sometimes one minute at a time. Thank you so much for letting me know that there are other people just like us.

  • Mr. W

    I Lost all. My wife, my little girl, my business, and my trust. Day’s are dark at times, nights are evil as the ex, and yet I have a girlfriend, who has been the saving light for six years.

    The illness has went into hiding… But I know it still wants to win.

    Time….. one breath more maybe.

  • Rebecca (16)

    This is beautiful, yet scary, it’s hard, even harder i suppose getting depression at 15, having people older than me stuffin pills down my neck, tellin’ me it’ll be okay, and knowing full well it’s not. Stay strong

  • Kieran

    About a month ago, I was diagnosed with depression, general anxiety and complex post traumatic stress disorder. The last one I can’t be surprised at. The second one I spent three years trying to convince friends, family, teachers, social workers and psychologists was NOT an attitude problem. As for the first… I didn’t believe it was possible that I had it until I read this post and these responses.

    You all understand so much and I’ve never known any of you. I’ve lost so many friends close to me, my education career is in a stand-still, I lost my part time job and I lost what it is to feel like to be me. And recently my most precious friend in the world told me “you’ve changed too much” and showed her dismay that I’m whining all the time, and it takes effort to talk to her. If I’m not a positive thing in her life by next year, I’ll lose her completely.

    Please forgive the sob story, but what I mean to say is that after all this, I have an annoying mother who is looking out for me, a dedicated best friend who loves me and an organisation who is helping me get my high school career back on track. There will always be those kind souls out there who simply will not understand, but will do all they can to keep you afloat.

    All we need is the hope, and the courage to find these people and keep them close to us. It wasn’t always like this even though it may feel like it, and there is NOTHING stopping this debilitating disease from leaving us all alone for good.

    Each and every one of you reading this has the power to turn their lives around and build anew. Every person, no matter who they are, what they are, or what they’ve done and especially if you’re doubting what I’m saying right now, I mean you… You deserve a better life.

    Keep the hope so deep in your heart that this black dog will never find it.

    Thankyou all.

  • Jonny

    This is a great page…I think we all suffer from some level of depression at some point in our lives and pages like this where people can share their experiences w/struggling others are invaluable.
    Like many, I have self-medicated for years-depression and anxiety, unfortuneately I have found that drinking or doing drugs is no fix at all only a broken crutch. So, what works?
    For me hard work and long hours….no time to think about being depressed. I guess I’d rather choose being a workaholic over an alcoholic or drug addict. This tends to work for me though because I have no family so I’m not guilty of neglecting anybody really.
    At any rate, this page is really a good idea, just wanted to post a quick comment!
    God bless you all.

  • Terri

    You’ve been inside my head, haven’t you? What a beautifully described, beautifully written post of something that so many of us know and live and struggle with, but aren’t all as eloquent to express it. Thank you for putting it into words for all of us fellow sufferers.

  • Well done, Wazza.

    Rightly deserved praise…

    Just one point that may already have been made.

    There is the clinical, neuralogical-kind of depression (unipolar or “major”), and there is dysthemia — the permanent dark mood kind.

    I suppose there is also depression as part of bi-polar if you want to tease it out more.

    My point is just to say that when telling people how they should react, behave or manage themselves, it’s worth considering what kind of depression we’re talking about.

    I at least want to point out that a lot of people are not about to kill themselves, but they’re dythemic — permanently down — and they too need help and need to be taken seriously. They are often the ones most open to feeling guilty when others tell them to pull out of it, precisely because they often manage too… some days, at least.

    Lastly, I think we need to consider how many people out there are fighting depression as a “side-effect” of something else, be it trauma, chronic illness or — as in my case — ADHD.

    Either way, depression is chronic (at least here in the West) and I’m delighted this post is furthering the conversation bravely.

    Awesome work, Waz.

  • Cyndi

    @ Kal: No, it is not usually the job, I’m sorry to say. If that were “usually” the problem with people and depression we wouldn’t need antidepressants and pdocs and therps. We would simply need to play musical chairs with our jobs and we’d all be “well”. I changed jobs about every three years. Stayed depressed. I thought I was in a “rut” or bored. Nope. Had trouble getting out of bed even with a new, supposedly exciting job that paid me very well. School did not do the trick for me either.

    @ Anyone who thinks depression or BP is something that a person can just do something different to make it go away, let me tell you, it’s not possible, I’m sorry to say. I wish it were possible. Medication and cognitive therapy both help somewhat but the REAL problem is the chemistry in our brains is F*ed up and needs to be balanced and medical science hasn’t figured out how to do that perfectly for each person yet. We are all different people with different brain chemistries. A medication that works well for you may not work at all for me. And then there’s this… When we finally do find a med that works well for us and trick our brain into being “normal” our brain figures it out or something and stops using the medication so it can become “Un-normal” again, the way it thinks it’s supposed to be and we have to try a different medication that will work for us once again. This happens a lot with antidepressants. I don’t know about the mood stabalizers, I’ve only taken Depakote for 30 days and switched right over to Topamax because of the amount of weight I gained. And the antipsychotics? Well, they work for me to a point. I keep trying new ones hoping “this time it will work 100 percent and I’ll be – normal – like I used to be”.. And that matchbox20 song “UNWELL” comes to mind.. If you haven’t heard it, please listen to it. My sister played it for me one day and she said, Cyndi, I bought this CD so you could hear this song, it’s just for you. I listened to it and cried and cried because someone knew almost exactly what I felt, what I was going through and how I longed for the days when I was different than I am now.

    We do not wish this upon ourselves. We do not bring this upon ourselves. Most likely we were born with a chemical imbalance or a predisposition to it and then traumatized somehow that made it “kick in”. I think that’s what happened to me. My birth father killed himself, I found out, and I have tried to many times (for about 30 years) and my kids are on meds because they are also Dx with some sort of mental disorder.

    @ The person who said “Don’t go to a psychiatrist and don’t take psychiatric medications,” LET ME SAY YOU’D BETTER NOT GIVE OUT THAT KIND OF ADVICE TO ANYONE unless you know them very well AND you are a psychiatrist, or trained as one, and have the authority to give that advice. You are telling someone like a diabetic to not take their insulin!! It’s the same difference.

    Please understand, everyone. You are you. You are not your disorder. Do not let it consume you. And it is not your fault, there is nothing you did to make you the way you are. We are blessed because we have a secret club that only people like us get to belong to and we are very special people, aren’t we? Have you realized that people like us have an interesting insight into the world that other (normal) people will never get because they are not like us?

    I am grateful for my disorder and am grateful I know people who have disorders. They are the best people in the world, IMHO.

    Many Blessings and Warmest Regards to all

  • athena

    Wow – I am sorry… it sucks there.

  • Michelle

    I’m a young girl still in high school with a whole life ahead of me. I know what its like to wake up early in the morning and wish that you never woke up at all. The feeling that you are a ball of yarn, and each day another thread is pulled, unwinding your fake smiles. Holding the tears of each small event and screaming to music because I’m too weak to deal with it like everyone else. I’ve tried committing suicide before, several times. My mom caught me but remains devoid about the situation, pretending it didn’t happen. I’m reaching frantically in the darkness for my voice, so I can call out for help, but its lost. Its not there. My mom was diagnosed with clinical depression, as was her mom. I know I have it. But I don’t want to drug myself and act like a zombie with a million empty bottles surrounded around family pictures. Like she does. I want help. I know I need it. Your writing, your work… it helps me. I smiled, the feeling that other people feel the same helps a lot. Not a fake smile.
    You are a wonderful writer, and an inspiration to me. I love your description.
    I’m not going to commit suicide… I think. I’m going to join the air force and if I die, I die. If not then I think maybe it will make me see I was meant to live. I want to believe it.

  • Thank you so much— this is so beautifully written, and yet so raw; honest. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

  • Josh

    Wow, just…wow. I guess that I also know how it feels to wake up in the morning and feel the entire weight of the day press down on you. I find being around other people hard and people who know me well, even more difficult. Everyday is feels like I get smaller, and smaller until there is nothing left of me. I don’t know if I would be called “depressed” but Thats the way that I feel most days. But I like to read, and I like to write. Those seem to really help me. Books help me to escape everything and immerse myself into something different, something I don’t have to worry about. Writing, when I find something I care about enough to write, feels right. It feels like I’m releasing the pressure that always feels like its building inside me. I’m happy to say that the pressure inside of me has never gotten out of control, but I’m also scared for when it does. But thank you, your writing is both amazing and very, very inspiring. I hope you keep writing.

  • Rod

    I guess the first thing I have to say is this Biff character is an idiot! I’ve dealt with depression for over 30 years. It’s a real thing that alot of people simply refuse to accept. I’ve often wondered how it would feel to be able to wake up in the morning, jump out of bed with a big smile on my face and shout about how great I feel and what a wonderful day it’s going to be. Unfortunately that never happens. Everyday I have to force myself to function. I get so tired of people saying “snap out of it” or “get over it”. Believe me, I don’t choose to feel this way. Being socially withdrawn, no real friends, feeling invisible is not a quality of life that anyone would choose. I know what’s going on and I feel I should be able to say “this really isn’t rational thought” but even though these feelings may not be real in my head they are. I’m currently on medications and in therapy and it helps somewhat. I have my good days and my bad days but I carry on. Mental illness can never be cured only controlled. I would like to tell people to not give up. Even on really bad days don’t give up.

  • Christopher M. Beiring

    There is no right ways to say or ground that which is the existence of my current and continuous outstretch of life in any more of a different or any more the same way you have. I do understand, in so many words, I feel what you do, but the one thing that gets me through the day or hour is not my wife, its not my future or how I will make others feel, or much less the fact that I will ever be happy. What I find solace in ( and Solace is one of the greater understandings of man) is the thought and small minute times of peace that I have found through understanding larger things than my self. If it takes me two years to mentally understand he laws of physics, or a week to see the unique curiousness of the the human interaction of a single moment, the solace found is that of making ones self take personal inside the mind time to learn and understand things, even if they are never expressed to another human. They are a divine gift to ones self to show true compassion from the one person who will always understand. I am not a religious person rather a spiritual one,but I do have many far between beliefs of something greater than what has been defined, a calling of greater peace without dedication, without falsification and lies, something that I feel lies greater within us all, a universal divine peace which cannot be bought nor given, but attained through our own workings of seeking to understand ourselves. Because if we do not take the time to understand ourselves how can we be expected to understand the lives and minds of others. If we cannot help ourselves through either inner meditation or exterior manifestation, how can we expect or help or much less do anything for those who are outside of us. to birth the that of divine light is to invite the peaceful nights.

  • This is an important topic, thanks for covering it. I’m sure it’s of great help to many…

  • Marie

    I read this at random, procrastinating on the internet. I wanted to say thank you for your writing. I suppose it’s evident that you talking about helps other people. I just wanted to say that it is possible for things to change even when it seems like you’ve been through everything. I hope you keep on the good march, and I’ll do the same, and I hope the next time you’re on the bottom you remember that what you do and what you’ve said has brought a bit of light to the world… to random strangers like myself. Please take care.

  • Nazeem Hendricks

    I thouroughly enjoyed this post and the comments on it. I can identify with all the symptoms people have described here. However, I would be reluctant to categorise the symptoms, because for me that would make it “real”. I treat it the sameway I treat a mild headache – I either eat something or I rest a little using medication only if the pain persists. I also feel that “depression” is triggered, and very often I know what those triggers are and I have learned that if I deal with them as they occur, I prevent my dissapointments from spiraling into “depression”. I still get dissapointed and I still think life is unfair and things should’nt be the way they are, and they probably always will be , not much I can do about that but I can do something about the way it impacts on me, and that , keeps me out of that dreadful, dark, gloomy place that has been my retreat for so many unproductive years. I don’t know what the stats are, but it just seems as if this “condition” is affecting a considerable % of the population, and just think… if we are all cooped up in our rooms feeling sorry for ourselves .. who’s out there making the world a better place , for ourselves and our children??

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  • Chris

    Well said and beautifully written.

  • laura

    Biff……you are so ignorant. Maybe you should live with depression for 1 day. I bet youll want to blow your worthless head off. On behalf of all these people who know what its like….God bless you and stay strong. dont listen to pricks like biff.

  • Tina Mehl

    I am a bipolar and I too loved this. It totally describes how I feel. It’s sad that the “Biffs” in this world make life so much harder for us. No one would say to a cancer victim “get up, you aren’t hurt.” What we have is a physical condition, brain chemistry is what my dr. says. Biff may be entitled to his opinion, but I’m surprised that he spends so much time replying to something he has not experienced himself. I’ve been dealing with Biffs my whole life, and I wish they would deal with their own problems and leave me alone, even worse when you work for a Biff.

  • mac

    Very well written piece. My girlfriend sufferred from depression a while back(before we met), recently she hasn’t been feeling so great. I would really appreciate any suggestions on how I can make her feel better?what should i do or not do? say or not say? will she always be prone to it?

  • dave

    nice piece man.

  • Michele

    Brilliant. I’ll be showing this to people when they don’t know what it means to be depressed.

  • Amy

    Very articulate. My depression has been mostly in remission for about 12 years due to effective medication, but I recognize what you describe.
    I hope you can take some comfort in the fact that there are so many of us who can see ourselves in your description.

  • Ron

    Warwick, I must echo the thoughts and feelings of so many others who have already posted before me when I say that this blog really touched me deeply.

    As “Nikky” pointed out, to me this blog said what I have not been able to say for as long as I can remember about my depression. It encapsulated my very own thoughts and feelings in a way that has helped me to explain this illness to myself, which is the hardest part indeed. I must say that it has given me a glimmer of hope in the realization that there are many, many others out there who are dealing with this and that I am not alone in that regard.

    My story – in a nut shell – I am a successful married man with a beautiful wife and two wonderful children. I have every possession that I could possibly want or need and I have great health. I truly have a blessed life. But the “black curtain of storm clouds”, as you so eloquently put it, greet me every day of my life. Truly, how does one explain the irrational impulses that seem so subjectively rational to someone who does not know? How does one plow through life trying to be “normal” while wearing that “cheap suit” that was bought in a hurry and can’t be taken back?

    Warwick, your blog was – for me anyway – very profound and spot-on brilliant. It gives me some peace of mind in knowing that there are others who are out there living in the “deluge” and surviving. I too hope for just the ordinary where I can wake up, stare at the worn face in my mirror with lines that I don’t remember collecting, and with the stubble that feels like it belongs to someone older than me, and go to work in my cheap suit, surviving without drowning until the waters recede. At least until the next deluge….

  • luke

    hey guys, enjoyed reading the comments and i hope people make it to mine… i have depression, mostly due to genetics i suppose and it is rather hard to get the ball moving, by that i mean start on your way to getting better. I am in the process of attempting to get help, therapy and medications, but i find it difficult to take medication. i really dont like the idea of it changing my thought process and i find myself refusing help when offered even if i really need it. everything is easy in retrospect but its now that is important and i truly believe that given the right support systems, therapy friends and family, as well as accepting medication and taking it as prescribed, it is possible to lift this feeling.

    in regards to anyone who also doesn’t like medication i give you this. what would you tell a diabetes patient who refused his medication and felt awful… its the same boat just a different problem and needs a new way of thinking about it.

    there is great stigma associated with depression, people assume its a weakness and we need to help to expose it as what it truly is. afterall 1/4 people have depression or have a family member who has had it. alot of friends who i had no idea about after i had said something opened up to me allowing my journey to be that much easier.

    and i understand that anything you do that helps may not fix it forever but if it can help for just a while is that not worth it. some freedom from the sadness, the tears, the sleeplessness, the lack of appetite, the guilt. please everyone there is no point for needless self punishment and prolonged suffering. there is help but it does require your input and dedication, there are no quick fixes. I find structure and exercise in combination with medication, they all help with the appetite and insomnia which have been the greatest obstacles for me.

    good luck everyone and know that you are never alone and are loved.

  • luke

    be good to yourself, be good to others, and be good to this place… in that order

  • though i am not sure if i have depression what makes it different from being a really sad or unhappy person?

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  • slayer3069

    It seems the massive response to the essay would indicate that we are not as alone and isolated as those Who suffer from depression invariably feel. I have struggled with it for many years and can relate every word.

    The medication prescribed only works for a limited, and all to short period then when you try to get off it the withdrawal can lead to even darker thoughts.

    The writer talks about looking at an open window longingly, I suppose we all have our personal favorite fantasy death for me it could be driving my car into a pole or over a cliff, but that’s all they are fantasies and pipe dreams I know that one day i will stop thinking about it and actually do something about it, when i convince myself that my loved ones will actually be better off with out me. Sorry to be so morbid I would like to leave anybody reading this on a positive note we are not alone and there is hope for some of us as long as we just think about it and find something no matter how small to get us through another day.

  • Zoltan

    Beautifully written. You are a poet.

    Why do not we use love to have fun in every fraction of a second, with the bliss, was given to each particle of the universe and make time pregnant with our enthusiastic euphoria to give birth to an everlasting enjoyment?

  • Just Another Teen

    Honestly this fits how I’m feeling perfectly, I don’t have kids but thats pretty much how I feel right now and it’s also pretty much what I’m thinking. idk maybe knowing someone is in the same situation will help…

  • Dolores

    Dear friends:

    Life can be incredibly difficult, but you can come through it. Having just one friend believe in you can mean the difference between life and death. So, if you can be a friend to someone suffering from depression,please give a little time to the person in need. The whole family is suffering as well. When everyone else walks out- a real friend steps in. You know who you are friend.

  • Thank you. This puts down in words what I’ve been struggling to explain for years.

  • Drag0nnymph

    This explains everyday life for some one whos suffers from depression pretty much exactly. It is not usually an every day thing. Like he and many other people have stated, it is more of a thing that kind of comes and goes and can last as little as a couploe of hours, and or much as days, weeks, or even months for some people. Some of the time, you can make yourself feel better, by helping yourself to realize the god you have in your life. But pretty often you will always see the bad with the good… You can say, “I should be happy, because I have beautiful children!” But then something inside you reminds you of how exhausting it is, or frustrating when you are trying to get the child to listen.
    Also, The whole trying to explain this to anyone who has not suffered from it, can be so very difficult, because as the writer points out, most of the people who know just kind of sigh, roll, their eyes and whisper “Again!?” When trying to explain it to some one, they just tell you to just get over it, or you have nothing to be depressed about. Going to a doctor does not help, becaue as has been pointed out the mjeds they want to put you on have side effects, including, but not limited to, worse depression symptoms! It makes no sense to put some one on something that could make life seem worse!
    Anyways, I guess I am kind of rambling on here. What I am really just saying, is that I knwo exactly how this is, and I thought it was very well put. Perhaps if more of us could explain it like this people who do not suffer may be able to understand more, but probably not…

  • Dude. Well said.

  • Cathie

    I appreciate this very much. You have touched on so many things I think and feel everyday. Its hard to explain why you don’t feel ok, and make “happy” just really be a choice you consiously make. Thank You. You are not alone!