Everyone Needs To Read This

Depression is humiliating. It turns intelligent, kind people into zombies who can’t wash a dish or change their socks. It affects the ability to think clearly, to feel anything, to ascribe value to your children, your lifelong passions, your relative good fortune. It scoops out your normal healthy ability to cope with bad days and bad news, and replaces it with an unrecognizable sludge that finds no pleasure, no delight, no point in anything outside of bed. You alienate your friends because you can’t comport yourself socially, you risk your job because you can’t concentrate, you live in moderate squalor because you have no energy to stand up, let alone take out the garbage. You become pathetic and you know it. And you have no capacity to stop the downward plunge. You have no perspective, no emotional reserves, no faith that it will get better. So you feel guilty and ashamed of your inability to deal with life like a regular human, which exacerbates the depression and the isolation. If you’ve never been depressed, thank your lucky stars and back off the folks who take a pill so they can make eye contact with the grocery store cashier. No one on earth would choose the nightmare of depression over an averagely turbulent normal life. It’s not an incapacity to cope with day to day living in the modern world. It’s an incapacity to function. At all. If you and your loved ones have been spared, every blessing to you. If depression has taken root in you or your loved ones, every blessing to you, too. No one chooses it. No one deserves it. It runs in families, it ruins families. You cannot imagine what it takes to feign normalcy, to show up to work, to make a dentist appointment, to pay bills, to walk your dog, to return library books on time, to keep enough toilet paper on hand, when you are exerting most of your capacity on trying not to kill yourself. Depression is real. Just because you’ve never had it doesn’t make it imaginary. Compassion is also real. And a depressed person may cling desperately to it until they are out of the woods and they may remember your compassion for the rest of their lives as a force greater than their depression. Have a heart. Judge not lest ye be judged.

Depression is not a synonym for being sad or having a bad day/bad week.
genetica genetica 26-30, F 79 Responses Jan 24, 2013

Your Response


Add a response...

I shall share these words with my family. Thank you.

Good thing I improved my biota health and I took my cod liver oil. Light, nutritious foods are very important.

hi me has been there for the past 45years it his amental illness and me his still the same way now genetic baby Michael glencoe2

I hate the meds but I love the meds.

I used to be. I can relate.

I have been looking for a way to describe depression. This hits the nail right on the head. Thank you-hugs

You have expressed the condition so true to the source. If you don't mind- I would like to post this story to my blog whilst giving deserved credit to you. It will be on this website so you know I am giving you credit. Thank you.

Reading this honestly made me cry. I've never read something that touched so close to home than this.

This is absolutley the best description of true clinical depression. I've been in the abyss too many times but have been unable to express in such a way. thank you so much for sharing this as I will use this as my resource when I feel the need to express my feelings about my depression.

Yes , best said, thank you

Wow.. I've always wanted to write down my thoughts and feelings, but it seems that you've already done it. I had tears in my eyes, because this describes me so much and my downward plunge.

It's like you've taken my thoughts and feelings away and put them into words.

Perfectly articulated.

Thanks for what you've written. It's entirely true and it desribes perfectly the living hell of depression. I've been there and I know.

The more and more I read your article, I identified with it. It is nicely written and I do try hard each day to get out of bed but I don't see the point.

What a well written post. Thank you for putting it into words that make sense, so that other's can understand what I am going through.

I live in a small town of vicious, ignorant people who have scapegoated me and attacked me constantly, destroyed my reputation and basically my life by spreading gossip behind my back, because they don't know depression when they see it. There is no dealing with this. When you're depressed, people just think you're stupid. And in a way, we are, because depression causes our thinking to slow down. I have had a really hard life because of it, and all most people have done is hit my fingers with a hammer, when it is all I can do to hold on by the fingernails in what seems like a's all so very hard.

That is the best, concise description I have read in a long time. I think I am going to copy the text to my local PC for reference. My wife is one of those that doesn't understand and very nearly divorced me for it. Luckily I got help and live a much fuller life now, but my advice to anyone that feels this way: talk to an experienced professional. By experienced, I mean someone that won't go straight for the prescription pad, but will take the time to figure out what your needs really are. In my case, my depression was more psychological, so a change in lifestyle was more therapeutic than the drugs I tried. I still needed that kick in the pants to make those changes, but now I am drug free and doing well. Working with someone was hard at first, but it probably saved my life.

you are right! I have depression and I spend all my energy on not trying to commit suicide.

This resonates with me so completely it is eery. I thank you for helps to know that there are people who DO understand what it feels like.

I think my experience complements your own, so this is a good place to post.

I thought I was depressed, so I went to the medical specialist with four pages of examples. He sped through the list, and then said "anxiety, this is all anxiety". To the non-professional person these two conditions can get mistaken for one another.

The best cure for anxiety is apparently knowing that you have it. I've changed my life around and have learned to recognize symptoms. The only medication was one to use in anticipation of highly stressful situations.

So, if you think you're depressed, talk to someone professionally trained to review your symptoms. I think Genetica knows well what her condition is. But for people here to find answers, check with a doctor also.

My depression comes and goes, but it seems to usually be here. Actually, I think it's always here, just sometimes it lessens a little bit. Lucky me, I got to sleep normally for two entire weeks.

I have not slept normally for years. The exhaustion was making the depression much worse. Thank God for Ambien...though it doesn't always work, especially if I'm emotional/upset.

Thank you for putting the words to something thst i have trouble explaining to anyone even myself. Im really struggling with depression i dont even want to believe it. Your words feel me with hope tat im not pathetic....

<p>OK.....I went and got a link to the Beck Depression Inventory.....This is a legitimate professional diagnostic tool. Take its results seriously! If you cannot click on the link, cut and paste it into your browser.<br />
<br />
</P><br />
<br />

I feel guilty because my depression must be so hard on my wife, that makes me more depressed, I go through bouts of rage and listlessness, to the point where I can't even be bothered to string a few coherent sentences together. Where just to go out in public is humiliation because I slouch, drag my feet around and look miserable, I feel like everyone is staring at me and knows what a miserable wreck that I am then that makes me feel worse, forget about getting any work done when in that condition. These are just a few of the many many symptoms of hell, purgatory, clinical depression. Thanks for the excellent description.

I've been depressed for a long time and am to embarrassed to seek for a professional help. Everyday I think about how nice it would be if I just die and don't have to feel anything again. I fantasize about death more than a dozen times a day... I don't know why I feel depressed... It's like an accumulation of things and memories that I can't explain. Like a dark cloud. And that evil and dark suicidal thoughts lurk inside my head all the time and tells me to just end this suffering... Last night that thought visited my head again and it was stronger than before. I was afraid to leave my bed because I might look for something to be used to end my life. While battling that thought, I realized that I want to live. My desire to live is stronger than my desire to die. I will see a doctor on Monday and look for help. I'm tired of living like this, but I know that deep inside I don't want to die.

Good for you, maybe the doctor can get you some meds that will help out

Thank you. Depression is indeed a harsh enemy. I am too embarrassed to talk to my friends because as far as they know, I'm the toughest person they have ever known in their lives. I didn't mean to trick them, but somehow they have that image about me. Right now I am trying hard to be positive, I'm clinging to my hope to see the doctor on Monday.

Read my posting I'm going to post.

Good for you! What a great observation. We often think we want to die but don't we just want thwarting suffering to end? So glad you understood your intense suffering as the sign that you want to live! Good luck to you!


2 More Responses

I keep looking at your story and being amazed at how exactly you hit this nail on the head. Everyone who doubts the legitimacy of depression needs to read it, And....I would also say it should be read by people who think they might be depressed. Some people need to be told they are NOT depressed. The difference between "a case of the blues" and the crushing, immobilizing mental pain that is genuine Clinical Depression needs to be delineated, Mental health professionals know how to do this. General/Family practitioners may not. Its why mental health professionals are necessary.

Thanks to everyone who posted support. I am going to see my Dr. tomorrow because my meds have stopped working. I cry most of the time and doing anything requires great effort. I hope he can help me. I'm afraid that there is nothing that will help. I take Wellbutrin and Paxil now. They worked for years. Life is not worth living if this continues. I'm so glad that some of you understand.

Good for you, I hope that your doctor can help.

You used the "red flag phrase". Please be sure to tell your Dr you said it, Life is only worth living if you think so and if you don't, we have something to worry about.

I told my doctor everything and he offered to put me in the hospital. I don't want to go there. I think i can hang on at home until I improve. He added Abilify to my meds and changed lorazepam to clonazepam. The weekend was better but I felt worse when my husband went to work on Monday. I still cry a lot. I'd like for that to ease up.

Thanks for the support! It really helps. You all are a great group.

I understand you don't want to go to the hospital. It feels like a defeat. It feels like putting yourself in a category you don't want to be in. But try to think of it as a "strategic withdrawal". You need to take yourself off the front lines of the battle and get some reinforcements. You need not to be alone! Every moment can be a life-and-death struggle and it only takes one moment of weakness to lose everything. No one needs to know. Call the doctor and go to the hospital....or go to the ER yourself. Good luck.

Davey, thanks so much for your advice and amazing insight. Everything you said about the hospital is true. I'm afraid that once I go in, they will never let me out. Just my history of depression could justify that. I'm also afraid of the treatments they'll decide I "need". My mother was hospitalized for depression and they forced her to have shock treatments. I could go in one day and have a lobotomy the next. It's terrifying. I have control over some things now. Once they lock me up, I won't control anything. What they might do could be worse than dying.

Cat, thank you for your generous acceptance of my version of the truth! Let me lay some more on you. I know some things about depression treatment, not only from my own experience but because I pay attention to the issue when it comes up in the media. First of all, making a decision based on fear is always unwise. Get the facts. I know that is hard to do when you are living under a 10-ton weight so here are the facts I know. If you sign yourself in, you can sign yourself out. they may pressure you but they can't stop you. Ditto for any treatments. You must sign to approve any treatments. Its the law. Look at the paperwork when/if you sign in to see what you are agreeing to. If they lock you in, and they might not if the facility is big enough to have a separate locked ward, it will be with your permission. Notice that your doctor was powerless in the face of your refusal to be hospitalized. ECT (Electroconvulsive Therapy) is a treatment of last resort....after EVERYTHING else has failed. And, by the way, it can work for people and they do it will a smaller voltage than they used to. They sedate you and it is really no different from any other surgical procedure. Lobotomies have been completely discredited for mental health treatment. And so far as "never let you out" believe me, the insurance company will never let that happen. They'd have to pay for it. Finally, if your mother had depression to the point it required hospitalization, that is the best argument I can think of to push you toward the decision. Depression has a strong genetic component. You obviously have a family history that needs to be dealt with. I can't tell you what to do. All I can do is point out when you are bullshitting yourself.

3 More Responses

I cry everytime I read this because this is exactly how I feel! "Normal people" have no idea how depression feels. Im bipolar and cried all day at work yesterday. Sometimes I feel so miserable, I'm sure being dead would be better. Feeling like crap for no reason and not having a reason why....I feel all of your pain.

There IS a reason. You are sick. Your brain is sick. The brain is just another organ like the pancreas and it is having trouble making its neurotransmitters like diabetics aren't making insulin. And, just like diabetes, depression can kill you. Please be careful. and think really hard about admitting yourself to the hospital. You should not be alone if you are having thoughts about being better off dead.

For those who are interested to know, the definition of clinical depression is established by a series of 7-10 questions (I'll have to see if I can find them) that allows the person to demonstrate a sad or melencholy mood that lasts for an extended period (2 wks?) and substantially interferes with daily functioning. If you felt depressed over losing a relationship and 5 days later you snap out of it and go about your life, you are not Clinically Depressed. If a person is subject to Clinical Depression, even when on medications, they are not cured....they go into remission. The Noonday Demon (good book, by the way) can pay a return visit anytime. If you think you are depressed make a visit to your Community Mental Health Center where you can get treatment on a "sliding fee" basis.....maybe even free!