Today I will share yet another post about my personal depression story. I have written an article about ‘The story behind my smile’ almost a month ago and I got a lot of sweet and supportive reactions. (Click here for that post)
The reason why I wrote that post is in order to inspire others and to let you know that it will be okay. I have ‘survived’ depression and even though I still feel down at times, I am not in that big black hole I once was in.
The thing with depression is that more people have had depressions than you might think. Dealing with depression is difficult. Hiding it is not.
I remember when I had my ‘big coming out party’ where I told my family and closest friends about my depression and that it was time for me to seek help. (almost) nobody saw it coming. I became a master in hiding it.
It was so weird. I did wanted help. I just did not want to ask for it. Asking for help was (and sometimes is) so difficult cause I am a very proud person. I do not like to show my weaknesses so I kinda strung my self along un till I hit rock bottom. And than I decided that the life I was leading was not the life I wanted to lead and that therapy was something I could really benefit from.
During my time of depression, sometimes I was dissapointed in my family and friends. ‘Why did they not offer me help, I mean, isn’t it obvious that I am not doing well?’ – I kinda played the victim role cause that was easier than to admit that if I wanted help, I should just ask for it.
However, I still want to share some signs that I thought were clear for others to see but appearently were not. I really want you to read them carefully and look in your innercircle, look at your friends, colleagues and try to see people. Acknowledge them, see their real colors. And if you recognize some of these signs just ask them this 1 question:
“So, how are you really doing” … I guarentee you you will get some answers you never thought were possible…and who knows, you can be the gamechanger in this persons life….
1. WEIGHT GAINING OR WEIGHT LOSS
When a person is happy you won’t see a dramatic difference in their weight. Unless of course someone is intentionally trying to lose weight and is on a strict diet. With me, it was the other way around. During my depression I gained almost 17 kilo. This was something I was really embarrassed about at first but trust me, when you feel fucked up on the inside, the outside does not really matter. I know that people noticed that I gained wait, obviously, 17 kilo is really a lot but nobody really asked me about it. Yes, it is an awkward subject, “hey you used to look different in a bikini, what happend’ is not a question anyone would like to get, but sometimes it is needed. By asking about it (and of course it is not nice to hear) you really can be someones wake up call. To be honest, at some point I did not even realize how much weight I have gained. I knew that I did not fit my clothes anymore. But than I just went to the store and bought some new stuff. By addressing this subject you will create a window to have an even deeper conversation
OMG, did I really just say smizing? Oh yea, I did. I think it is so annoying, the way Ms. Banks uses this term. For those who never watched America’s Next Top Model; smizing is smiling with your eyes.
When you are depressed it is easy to fool people with ‘smiling’ with your lips or even laughing a bit out loud. But eyes are really the window to your soul. When someone is laughing, try to see if their eyes are laughing too. Is someone genuinly happy or is that person faking it. I have fake laughed so many times during my depression my jaw started to hurt. But still everyone thought I was this perfect girl in her perfect girl living the perfect life, while on the inside I was broken.
3. SOCIAL WITHDRAWAL-OR EXTENSIVELY GOING OUT
The best place of a depressed person is back at home in their own bed. During my depression I spend most of my time in bed. Of course I still went to work, kept up appearance – but the second work was over I went directly home. For me this was a weird thing because I have always been a very outgoing girl. I also always loved cocooning at home, but I also went out a lot. At some point I just stopped. The thought of being in a busy and hectic crowd drove me crazy and I even felt so depressed by just the thought of it. I spend so much time at home and I isolated myself from others. I always gave some lame excuse until I reached the point where I would even ignore my own boyfriend.- So really try to look in the change of behavior of people. Is that one really outgoing friend suddenly not going out anymore or perhaps the other way around- maybe someone who never went out is extensively going out, getting drunk- doing who knows what.
I am not saying that if someone does these 3 things (or one of them) that that person is depressed. Of course there can be other factors too. People change, people act differently or want different things in life. I am just sharing the things where I kinda gave away that I was depressed but nobody noticed. So I do want you to look around and perhaps if you suspect that there is something going on in someones life, there probably is. Don’t be shy and just ask about it. Even if you think it is none of your business. Show that person that they are not alone- cause I can guarantee you, that person is dealing with a depression, he or she is feeling alone. And that is the worst feeling out there.
Be kind to others. Be kind to your self.
Perhaps we know eachother, perhaps we don’t. Either way, you can always send me a message and I will try my best to help you, or at least just to be there for you…
Have you ever dealt with depression or know someone who dealt with depression? How did you recognize it?