In honor of Depression Awareness Week, I want to blog about something different. Unlike my other posts, this one may make people feel slightly uncomfortable and possibly a bit confused. I just really want to clear up some of the common misconceptions of depression, because not everyone understands it. Depression is a part of my life, and I want to share with you all how this affects me. I’ve had mild depression for about 5 years maybe. Depression is one of those terms that people often use lightly. I’ve seen plenty of people talk about depression as if it’s a mood, similar to sadness, but it’s not. Depression is a mental illness. People with depression think differently than those without it. Everyone experiences depression differently; because I have mild depression, I never experience suicidal or homicidal thoughts and I don’t self-harm. Another common misconception; IT DOES NOT TAKE A TRAUMATIC EXPERIENCE TO DEVELOP DEPRESSION. Nothing specific happened 5 years ago that I will link to my depression.
Depression makes me feel certain things, sometimes there are feelings that I can’t put a name on. Feeling angry for no exact reason. Feeling alone in a room full of people. Feeling exhausted after sleeping all day. Feeling discouraged when things don’t go the way I hoped it would. Feeling frustrated because the people around me just don’t understand. Feeling overwhelmed and tired. When my depression hits me, I honestly feel careless. My depression usually flares up for about 3 days, yeah, THREE DAYS at a time.
Every now and then, I get so frustrated I cry. At times I just want to stay in bed, in the dark, alone. I cancel plans a lot, sometimes I just don’t feel like socializing. A lot of the time, I don’t want to talk to anyone. I struggle to find peace. Sometimes I like to go on a drive, and take the scenic route. I may take a 45 minute shower just to escape from reality. I often grind my teeth when I’m sleeping, and I get nightmares. At times I don’t want to eat, like I wish I didn’t have an appetite. Of course I end up eating because I find comfort in food. I then get frustrated and feel guilty because I’ve overeaten and now I feel worse. CRYING OVER SPILLED MILK IS A REAL THING!!!!
Depression to me is; pain, exhaustion, anger, irritation, annoyance, and frustration all at once. I don’t always think logically when my depression hits. I ignore the people around me, and I often snap on those who are closest to me. Instead of talking about my feelings, I write about them because I don’t have a ton of people in my life who understand my depression. Obviously everyone has their own way of surviving depression, writing is how I do it. Depression is a real thing, there are 350 million people in the world who suffer from it! Take some time to learn about it! Some of your closest friends may suffer from it, and they may feel like they have nobody who they can vent to. Understand that depression is not sadness, its numbness.
If I ever need time to myself, I need the people in my life to understand why. It’s not me being standoff-ish, it’s because I have depression and sometimes I need a break.
Disclaimer: this is specifically a post about how I am affected by depression, everyone experiences it and handles it differently.