If I was a celebrity, I could write a book and make an assload of money. But I'm not, I'm just a regular person who has struggled with depression my whole life, so I'll talk about it here instead.
I've written about this before, but I think sometimes it deems repeating. I have depression. Dysthymia, to be exact. Dysthymia is an ongoing, low-grade depression. Stress can exacerbate major depression. I found this out when Adam did a paper on dysthymia for a class. (It was nice to see him try to learn more about what affected me, and how to deal with it.) I found it a tad bit hilarious that I married a man in the military without ever knowing I had dysthymia. Stress? Yeah, what military wife doesn't deal with stress?
I'm glad that depression is no longer a social stigma. It can really, really hinder me, and if people know this about me, and understand it, it's that much more helpful to me. I can't understand people who don't think medication is necessary. (I will point out that I am not on any sort of medication, but I feel strongly about this.) If your friend told you she had cancer, would you tell her not to treat it? Depression is an illness, and if it can be helped with medication, why not?
If you've never experienced depression, count your fucking blessings. If you know someone who does, try to understand. It's not something we can just "snap out of" or forget about. It affects us every minute of every day. I would love to be depression-free for the rest of my life. But that's not possible. Dysthymia will affect me for the rest of my life.
I've learned the warning signs of when I'm falling into a major depression. I've had two major depressive episodes in my life. I hit rock bottom, literally. I look back now and am glad I'm alive. I don't even remember much of those episodes, that's how unlike myself I was at that time. I thank God for those around me who helped and understood, and saved me before it was too late.
Depression is real. (Oh damn I sound like the Cymbalta commercials that actually make me more depressed.) Life is tough, no doubt, and depression can make it seem that much tougher. If you have a loved one with depression, reach out to them. Sometimes we need more help than we let on, or even know that we do.