“There are wounds that never show on the body that are deeper and more hurtful than anything that bleeds.” – Laurell K. Hamilton
There is not one person that has escaped the inevitable evil called depression. Whether witnessing a loved one go through some form of it or having a personal experience with it, depression can leave emotional scars if not treated properly. It can take a mild form of “I am not feeling like doing anything today” or an extreme form when existence and living no longer seem as a viable option. More deep forms of depression are classified as an illness and need to be treated with specific medication under the supervision of a doctor.
Any occurrences in life could trigger depression, such as job loss, break down of a relationship, general state of unhappiness with the person’s life path, inability to survive financially, giving birth to a child (post natal depression) and dealing with sudden changes of circumstances.
Those suffering depression require the help of their circle of trust. Unfortunately, there is often lack of care or not wanting to face the issue by the people surrounding the depressed one. The early tell signs are missed and the affected person spirals out of control. Depression tends to make people fearful as it is unseen and often unheard.
There are many signs of depression, including mood swings, withdrawal from the outside world, low self-esteem, lack of motivation, loss of appetite and weight or increase of appetite and rapid weight gain, as well as increase in fatigue and disrupted sleep. Many people put on a brave face and do not let on that they are suffering. Even worse, most people experiencing depression are in denial about it, letting depression consume their lives.
If you come to realise or at least suspect that you may be suffering from depression, the best and the only thing you can do is seek help: both professional and personal. See a doctor, talk to someone you trust, express your emotions and start dealing with the problem. Work out the plan of action and win the battle.
In turn, if you know someone who you think may be suffering, do not keep quiet. Offer your help and a friendly ear. Strongly suggest seeking medical help. Remember that acknowledging the problem is half way to resolving it. In the words of Tenzin Gyatso, the 14th Dalai Lama – “The greatest degree of inner tranquility comes from the development of love and compassion. The more we care for the happiness of others, the greater is our own sense of well-being.” Start caring! The world will be a much better place if we learn to care about others’ state of mind, therefore enriching our own existence.