The Blog Farm

The Blog Farm

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

What Can We Do???

I have to say that Depression Awareness by the public is lacking big time. That is why the stigma of depression is still felt by us. People just “don't get it” or they just don't want to understand, they feel that we are exaggerating the way we feel. Maybe they are scared of the word, or don't know what to say to a person with depression.
Depression is often an illness where one is all alone in their struggle. You may feel that you are cut off from everyone at some point.
I often feel the loneliness because I don't talk about it to my family or friends even if they ask if something is wrong I'll say no. But most of the time my family will pick up on it and they feel it. But I say nothing, because I don't want to upset them so I struggle alone, by myself. I stay hidden behind my shadow. My shadow of depression.
I just can't seem to lift the mask that covers me. I feel like a “ticking time-bomb” sometimes ready to explode at any moment. I think this is true for the thousands of people who suffer some form of depression.
Whether we are at home, work or even school, destructive behaviour toward ourselves or others is sounding that alarm on the unspeakable pain that we feel.
Often we try to soothe psychological and emotional wounds in many different ways e.g.
eating disorders, drug and alcohol abuse, working 24/7, excessive gambling or shopping. These are just some of the ways we soothe or find comfort for our well-being.
I can attest to that, as many of you can. To me, it gives me comfort in some “insane way.”
This on-going challenge of managing depression takes a lot of work. It takes HARD work and commitment by controlling and identifying the factors that trigger it. For me re-living the past and bringing it up at therapy often triggers me after I leave therapy, and thus starts the spiral downward again. I eat, drink, sleep the past over and over again, making me even more sad. I know re-hashing whatever is bothering you has to come out in order to heal. But this is where I find it hard. I find that it's not healing me, it's hurting me the more I think about it, but if I do nothing then I know I will be in big trouble.
They say we need to make the time to have adequate rest, eat healthy, exercise and have continued treatment with a therapist or doctor and continue to take our meds in order to beat this demon.
One problem I have when I am depressed is I don't eat. I may have breakfast and maybe some lunch, but then I won't eat at dinnertime. Sometimes I will only have one meal all day. I'm just not hungry. I do see my therapist on a regular basis and to the most part take my meds . It's strange though, reading the above, I'm chuckling to myself and saying “you idiot why don't you do what you say?” And I think I know the answer to that one. I just don't care enough about myself. I hate myself to some degree because of what has happened to me. I hate the feelings I have, sometimes it nauseates me. I just want to be able to help others. Maybe I can make a difference if only for 1 person, then maybe that person will do something about their depression.
One thing the experts say is we must be honest with ourselves, we have to be able to tell someone how we feel. We need to get help from a professional. Maybe by doing this it will give us strength to share our stories with others. To let them know that they are not alone. That they are not teetering on the edge ready to fall off. Someone is there to catch them. Someone is there to help, that to reach out and face our demons is to end this torture we call depression. We need to face the truth.
I find facing the truth hard. Telling someone how you feel can be very scary. Thoughts are racing through my mind as to what I want to say. Telling family is really hard, because I don't want to let them down or upset them. Being honest about your feelings is not easy. They say that by doing this by releasing our pain to others or even ourselves is the first step in being able to lift our heads high and get the help we need. To end the stigma.
My struggles have been long and hard. I know that I still blame myself for the way I feel. I know, everyone says “your not to blame,” that “you didn't cause this to happen,” but deep down I find it so hard to let go of that feeling. Thoughts often race through my mind no matter what I'm doing, but I will try and put the pieces together somehow someway and I will try to stop feeding the demon that keeps me Hiding behind my shadow!!!


Elizabeth Maynard Schaefer said...

Hi Mary,
Thanks for your note on my blog. I can really relate to the topics in this posting, and I'm glad that you're writing about it -- I believe it can help us tremendously, and help those around us to "get it" more. I hope very much that you can try to remember to point your anger at your illness, NOT at yourself! (A good writer is worth much more than that!)
Beth Schaefer

Kahless said...

I am on anti-depressants though I am trying to weed myself off them now.
I am believer in depression as a reflection of our supressed feelings. Express the feelings of our inner child and the depression lifts.

Depression can be really debilitating.

'Tart said...

I can so relate to this:
the stigma,
the aloneness,
the wishing that people would understand or even want to understand more,
the fact that so many of us soothe pain in different ways, but it is the same need to feel to do so,
the realness of the illness.

I love this post because I feel it.

Maybe for you, and the fact that you keep it 'all' in, you realize you can let it out little by little and the (your) world will not blow up. You have proven to yourself that you can undergo the therapy process and your world still holds together. And you are seeing worth in getting help and my God you are expressing yourself so well on this blog.

All I can say is that you are touching lives by being this honest. I love this post.