I thought I would discuss what life is like with depression. I previously addressed PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder).
I was diagnosed with depression in the 6th grade (13 years ago). Some days are worse than others. Like PTSD, depression can often be very crippling. Depression is more than just feeling sad. It can range in different severities. For me, it feels like extreme despair. That coupled with PTSD makes a real doozy (does anyone even use that word anymore?). With depression you lose a lot of motivation for things. Things just don't feel all that important. You tend to think, "What's the point anymore?" That seems to happen with me with most things. Take losing weight for example. I've had weight issues for a long time. In six years I gained 100 pounds and am about 150 pounds overweight. I've tried many times to lose weight; I tend to do good for the first couple weeks, but then I burn out and think, "What's the point anymore? I'm never going to be able to lose the weight" and I end up giving up. I've been working really hard over the last four days though because I have a goal now (other than wanting to lose all the weight). There's a costume I really want to wear for AWA next year, but the biggest size it comes in is a size smaller than I am. Thinking about going down one dress size seems more reachable than losing 150 pounds. Anyway, I don't know if I'll burn out again in a couple of weeks, but I'm really hoping no matter what I'll keep going.
So when you're depressed you lose a lot of motivation. You also tend to want to be by yourself a lot. You feel like no one understands what you're feeling, or you feel like you're a burden on others, so you keep to yourself. Of course, since depression varies for everyone, I'm only saying what it's like for me.
There are A LOT of medications out there to treat depression. I have tried just about every anti-depressant out there. Prozac helped me for years, though over the last few years it's made my depression worse. Unfortunately with anti-depressants, a common side effect is they can increase suicidal thoughts/feelings. This is what has happened to me. There are other ways of treating depression other than medications though. I almost tried one of them: ECT (Electroconvulsive Therapy), which is pretty much electro-shock therapy. Unfortunately I wasn't approved for it due to my brain injury. As of right now, I don't have anything except for therapy to treat my depression. It's just something I have to live with since everything else makes it worse.
When I'm depressed, I tend to lock myself in the bedroom so no one can see me, and so I'm not near anything that I can hurt myself with. It's very crippling. There have been rare times where it seems like my depression was finally gone, but something always triggers it to come back. When I am depressed I think very negatively and it's difficult to get me out of the pit. It feels like I'm drowning. People who care about me try to pull me back up to the surface, but it feels like something has grabbed me and is pulling me deeper into the sea. The problem about depression also is sometimes you pull others down with you instead of them pulling you out. This can be really hard for people to deal with and may even end their relationship with you because they can't handle it. Don't fault them for this (but don't blame yourself either). They don't know how to deal with it and feel helpless. But keep in mind, there are those who will try to bring you out of it no matter what. Lean on those people to be your anchor.