Let's bow our heads in empathy and look to understand the complexities of depression and how we can all support our loved ones that suffer with it.
I battled depression as far back as I can remember. I grew up with a mom that had depression (she lived with a man that assaulted and abused her weekly), so it was easy to learn the habits of depression; however, it wasn't that clear-cut and simple. I also suffered a life of childhood abuse, sexual assault, and domestic violence with mental abuse. I believe that when you are vulnerable, as I was with depression and a history of violence, you can fall into relationships that are abusive without recognizing (or ignoring) the signs. Looking at all of this, I can understand why it was a daily struggle to stay above water. I used to tell my adult children that I was underwater, and yet I was still breathing.
I don't think anyone that hasn't suffered with this mental illness can really relate to or understand what we have gone through or what we struggle with; perhaps, unless you have had a family member or a friend that suffered with it. I heard so many comments such as the old proverbial chin-up, but to solve mental health issues it's not that simple and to say such a thing to someone that is suffering with depression is just wrong; it's wrong because of the lack of education others have regarding the complexities about depression. Each and every one of us has a different genetic make-up and different environmental factors; as a result, there is no one-fits-all solution.
Robbin Williams death from depression woke many of us up but for how long? We read about it, talk about it, and then we close the chapter only to re-open up the book when another death occurs, but is there a real concern? I don't know. I hope so.
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