Thursday, 11 April 2013

Depression; It's not all it's cracked up to be.

'Reality depresses me. I need to find fantasy worlds and escape in them' -Noel Fielding

I'm Leanne, I'm 25 and I suffer from depression...Yep, I am admitting this and yep I am putting it out there. This is the start of my path to happiness (ohh the chesse!)      

A few facts before we start:
  • Depression is common-one in five people become depressed in their lives
  • The single greatest misconception surrounding depression resides with it's cause
  • The feeling of depression is deeper and more unpleasant than short periods of unhappiness 
Depression is still a very taboo subject and kept quite hush-hush. The numbers of people suffering from some form of depression re ever increasing but it is  topic that is still not readily talked about.

So...I guess I've had depression since about being 17-18, but I was only 'officially' diagnosed about 3 years a go. Yes I take anti-depressants and yes I've tried counselling. 
Being 100% honest counselling was NOT for me, I understand how it works for some people but for me I just didn't find it of any help. As a person I'm not very comfortable discussing my problems and issues with people. This in turn makes my depression worse. Lack of communication plays a major part in why I can become so down. 

I can't and won't talk to people about things that are bothering and upsetting me. Strange I'm doing this though eh?
I have  fear of letting people close to me, letting them know personal facts about me. In my delusional mind letting somebody get close to you ultimately leads to getting hurt. I don't want to be hurt, hence keeping people very much at arms length. 
So having to sit and talk to a complete stranger, telling them intimate things about my thoughts and feelings just wasn't going to work. Much to my Dr's dismay. I lasted about four sessions before I just never went back. 

I've stuck with the happy pills though, taking them each day in the hope of an overwhelming miracle where I'll become as happy as possible. Obviously this has not happened, haha. To be honest I don't actually know if they are working or it's just my mind makes me thin they are, if I take this pill I WILL feel better. The thought of not taking them scares me more than the thought that I could be on these for the rest of my life. I'm happy to rely on some chemical if it keeps me on an even keel. I have abused the tablets, it would be a lie to say I haven't. Taking up to four times the normal dose in a bid to be happy, feel normal. But in the long run it doesn't work for one it's not good for you and is basically overdosing and well as soon as you cut it down the happy feeling just disappear making the dark times 100% worse. 

The 'dark times' is what I call my low times. Depression is an individual thing, no two people feeling the same. For me it is like a dark cloud constantly surrounding me, blocking out happiness, fun and enjoyment. Don't get me wrong every now and again this cloud will crack and light gets through and I can be happy, I can be smiley, laugh and joke. The real me can be seen, I can be a nice person. But these days are becoming increasingly rare. The dark times are becoming more frequent and much darker, dense clouds trying their hardest to block even tiny streaks of light. 

When this happens I feel like I can't allow myself to have fun, to laugh, to be me. The desire to shut myself away becomes completely overwhelming. I despise this person, a person who pushes away people close to me. I tell myself I'm not good enough for them, they don't want to know me. Why would they want to be friends with me?...One of my biggest regrets is loosing the one person I have ever truly loved. I pushed this person away, trying to make them hate me like I hated myself. I did some awful things to this person, I should never have treated someone I loved so dearly that way. In the end they left and they have now found happiness of their own with someone who deserves them.

I guess I've always been good in my own company, I don't mind doing things alone. I've never really had masses of friends, even at high school. Just a small group. But at this moment I fear I truly have pushed any friends I had away. This is what depression has caused me to do and ultimately I will be alone and it will be all my own doing.    

I over critique myself, I over criticise myself. I could easily reel of a list of things I hate/dislike about myself. Where as as me what I like about me and it is much more difficult!  

Why am I writing this?           

To break this taboo of not talking about depression, to go against my own rules of not sharing my problems. One this is done, it's out there and there is no going back. I'm venturing out of my comfort zone and doing something in a bid to help me start my path to a happier place. Friends and family are going to read this, complete strangers too. But it feels like the right thing, at this time, to do. I am not looking for sympathy and I hope I haven't come across all 'woe is me' as that is completely not what this about. From the outside I'm just an average 25 year old girl but delve inside and I'm a different person. I guess what I'm trying to say is depression can affect anyone and everyone you can't stereotype people. Don't treat it like a taboo subject any more. 
I hope someone reads this and realises they are not alone in how they feel, if this can encourage at least one person to talk about how they feel some good has come from it :)