Do you ever find yourself feeling like your occasional bouts of the blues tend to stretch on for weeks or even months, perhaps for reasons you can’t explain? Do you ever feel like crawling into bed rather than having to venture back into the world and pretend you’re okay for one more day, feeling all the while that you’re anything but?
If this sounds all too familiar to you or someone you know, then you may want to consider looking whether you may be battling depression. Though it’s a struggle that’s hard to put into words, depression is an incredibly common disorder which affects over 15 million American adults and is the leading cause of disability in the U.S. for citizens between the ages of 15 and 43.
According to the National Institute of Mental health, around 6.7% of the U.S. population can relate to exactly what you’re going through, which will hopefully serve as reassurance in itself that you are far from alone.
If someone you know may be battling depression, the quotes below may help you see things from their perspective and give you an idea of the internal battle they face every day just by getting out of bed.
“Every time people ask me if I’m okay, it’s just a reminder that I’m not OK at all.”
"You never know how strong you are until being strong is the only choice you have."
“The difference between you and me is that when you wake up, your nightmare ends and Mine just Started”
“Sadness is a short adjustment period Depression is a long-term illness”
“Often the people with the strongest hearts carry the heaviest ones”
“I get lost inside my mind”
“Behind my smile is a hurting heart, behind my laugh, I
m falling apart Look closely at me, and you will see, the girl I am, it isnt me anymore”
"Sometimes In life, you feel sad without any reason, and you can’t help it. And you can’t deal with it.”
"We are all so much together, but we are all dying of loneliness."- Albert Schweitzer
“Love me for who I am… not for what you want me to be.”
I wanted to talk about it. Damn it. I wanted to scream. I wanted to yell. I wanted to shout about it. But all I could do was whisper, “I'm fine.” - The Oxytonics
“The sun stopped shining for me is all. The whole story is: I am sad. I am sad all the time and the sadness is so heavy that I can't get away from it. Not ever.” ― Nina LaCour, Hold Still
“because wherever I sat—on the deck of a ship or at a street café in Paris or Bangkok—I would be sitting under the same glass bell jar, stewing in my own sour air.” ― Sylvia Plath, The Bell Jar
As harrowing and isolating as depression can feel, please rest assured that it is nothing that you need try to handle alone. As debilitating as it can seem some days, it’s also highly treatable though it’s estimated that only one-third of sufferers seek out treatment.
Don’t become a statistic! The odds are that if are dealing with depression, you are already far stronger a person than most, as the battles you deal with on a day to day basis are invisible and therefore can be harder to explain to others, much less understand yourself.
If there’s one thing we ask you to always keep in mind, it’s that you are so much more than your disease. Though depression may attempt to shame you into feeling guilty or like there’s something wrong with you, nothing could be further from the truth. Anxiety disorders develop from a complex set of factors ranging from genetics and brain chemistry to life events and circumstances.
The one thing these factors have in common is that they are all largely, if not completely out of your control. Among the underlying truths of being human is that none of us can control everything that happens to us, sometimes even inside our own minds. The good news however, is that we can always control how we respond to what happens to us.
So rather than face the battle alone or try to white knuckle it for one more day, why not get out there and take your life back?
A great resource to start your journey is the ADAA website where you’ll find a list of options ranging from therapist locaters to hotlines to self-help book referrals. Whether you’re searching for help for yourself or someone you love, please keep in mind that you are not alone and share this list and info with anyone you think it might help.