Now With 30% More Emo
- Mar 8, 2009
- Reaction score
Vedder - There are many ways of dealing with depression as there is likely hundreds of reasons as to why people feel depressed. I don't understand why people get depression and it baffles me that you find another person giving her opinion so shocking, do you happen to understand all the issues experienced in this world by people? I definitely don't. I have actually said those exact same words I wrote in my earlier post to one of my three best friends, C. and her initial reaction was exactly the same as yours, she was truly shocked, especially when I added to my words "So you think the solution is spending the rest of your life wallowing in self-pity, spending lots of cash in psychologists who are scamming you and popping in pills into your mouth?"
What is radically different is the outcome. Your words seem to imply that by saying that to someone suffering from anxiety, depression or having suicidal thoughts I would be harming them. Again let me remind you that every person is an individual and hence their way of dealing with depression can be totally different. Some take the defeating way "I will suffer from depression the rest of my life, there is nothing I can do to fight this", others will take the positive resilient approach -organizations such as The Blurt Foundation in the UK are a wonderful example of this and by the way I was a volunteer there for 5 years and in my interview for the volunteer position I expressed my opinion and they did not have any issues with it; in fact they appreciated my honesty- and others sadly will be taken advantage of by people selling pills, "self-help retreats", religious sects and the likes.
After a lot of convincing -months really- my friend C. agreed to come with me once to the place in Glasgow I used to volunteer for three evenings per week -I was living in Edinburgh at the time. I had told her that seeing what other people go through in life would make her put her own problems into perspective and realize that it did not make any sense to waste a single day of her life with this depression and feeling sorry for herself.
I volunteered in a centre in Glasgow for African women who have survived gang-rapes and mutilation. The way they dealt with the emotional scarring caused by these horrific events was inspiring to say the least, especially their attitude and will to never fall into depression.
My friend spent about 5 hours going around having chats with the women in the centre on a one-on-one basis. We took the bus back to Edinburgh and she did not say a single word, just pensive.
Next day she announced on FB she was taking a break for hiking in the Lake District, switched off her phone and off she went for three weeks. During those 3 weeks I got the same type of speech from friends in common that I guess I had got from someone like you "Look what you have done, Yurena! she is probably going to kill herself and it is all your fault, you lack empathy", "You are a horrible person" etc etc etc. Those 3 weeks I spent feeling 100% positive she was doing OK and there was nothing to worry about.
When she came back she told me that visit to the Glasgow centre made her hear a "click" in her head and think "Sooo what is actually I am feeling depressed about?" . Listening to those women made her realize how stupid it was that she had wasted so much time of her life due to depression and her problems -health, a heartbreak and an issue that has to do with her family being biracial and all the racism/discrimination etc they have endured in the UK because of that- felt tiny in comparison and for the first time in years at least issues she felt she could handle and control rather than letting them control her life.
She is still one of my best friends -in case you are wondering- and always tell me she wishes someone years and years ago would have taken the approach I took with her, rather than just "feeding" her self-pity. She stopped going to the psychologist, the pills -it caused her insomnia for a few months, it took her some time to adjust as they had her heavily medicated, like a zombie- and joined a choir and started going to Zumba lessons. In other words: she started to live.
She now has a boyfriend and is working as a lecturer at a British university.
I am proud of her that she did not stop in the "Oh! I am so shocked you say that" but took the courage to tackle her depression full on.
I wish you could meet one day one of my pen pals from Zambia -she moved to Sweden three years ago. She has an interesting theory as to why in the Western world there are so many cases of depression. I guess you would feel shocked by hearing her words or my mum's words who went through horrible things in her earlier life -including witnessing the death of her best friend due to gangrene when she was 7- and when I was little and the neighbours often asked her "I don't understand how you are not depressed after the harsh life you have had". She always answered the same "I am just too busy to fall into depression. I have a child to feed so my head is occupied trying to find pragmatic solutions, not busy with silliness".
Resilience, understanding that life is just once so there is no time to waste and learn from those who have gone through stuff we in the Western world are lucky enough to only watch in horror movies. Inspiring people with real problems.
That is my piece of advice to people like you. And a bit of tolerance towards differing opinions would not do you any harm either.
This post implies one can will themselves out of depression. Sigh. That is so damaging--and the assumption that people with depression are just wallowing in self pity with no awareness that their problems aren't "real." Wow. Thanks, you've just solved lifelong depression by telling me I'm being selfish. I'm gonna go tell my friend she could stop her leg from being broken if she could just realize how beautiful unbroken legs are and that others have been in worse car accidents and not broken their legs--that'll fix her and stop her silliness. SMH