What Depression Looks Like
The reason why I’m writing this article is mostly to raise awareness about what it’s like to live with Major Depressive Disorder. I would also be lying if I said that this article is not a means for me to vent and rant. I feel so vulnerable right now that this article will truly represent what living with depression is like for me. As always, if you find yourself suffering from depression or any other mental illness please seek out for help. Help is out there. I cannot guarantee you that you will get ‘healed’ and not have to live with this shit anymore but it will get easier. Hopefully.
As I am righting this article right now, I feel like my brain is about to collapse. I feel like my brain is literally a black organ and it’s secreting toxic chemicals. These toxic chemicals are making me want to end my life, are making me feel so overwhelmed that I cannot cope with these emotions all at once. I feel like my body is about to explode from this intense sadness that I am currently feeling. This sadness not only makes it really hard for me to actually function as a human being, but it also makes it really difficult for me to absolutely care about anything. It is safe to say that depression has been ruining my life for these past three years. It’s like depression comes in waves. Some days it’s bad, other days it’s not so bad, but on other days, my depression is really really bad. Today is one of those days. Today I feel like depression has grabbed me from my throat and pushed me against a wall and beat me up so hard that it is impossible for me to get up. In the past I have been in this situation and I always have gotten back up and I am sure that I will get back up this time too, however, when you’re currently in that moment, it’s really difficult to picture yourself feeling better. I feel like I am going to be living in this state of intense sadness all my life. And that is something that I absolutely cannot do.
Another aspect of depression for me is feeling tired all of the time. To back up my argument I am going to give you an example that has happened just this week. I am currently a university student studying psychology (ironic isn’t it). For this past week I have only been able to attend university twice. The other three days, I woke up each day and I felt the weight of the world on my chest. The second I opened my eyes in the morning I felt this massive weight of sadness sinking down in my stomach. I felt this massive weight moving down starting from my throat all down to my stomach and it just felt like it kept getting bigger and bigger and more intense. The sadness was paralysing. I literally could not get out of bed. It felt like it was physically impossible for me to get out of my bed and face the world. I absolutely wasn’t able to interact with anybody; and I have to learn that days like these are normal for someone who suffers from depression. And I also have to learn and accept that it is okay for me to have these kind of days. Depression is a serious illness and it has it’s physical and emotional side effects; and these symptoms are as real and as valid as any other symptoms in any physical illness.
The ugly side of depression is the loneliness that comes with it. Sometimes I find myself in a room full of people and I just feel completely alone. I feel like I’m living in an alternate world in my head and this world is just so gloomy and there is this negative sad vibe around. Most days are like this. Most days I am barely aware of what goes on in the actual physical world. These moments of derealisation where I feel like I am a ghost floating above my body are weird to say the least. It feels like when I am experiencing these moments I just want to do something physically so that I ‘snap out of it’. I always get the visualisation of cutting my arm off and this black gooey substance comes out. That’s what I picture this feeling as. Even just today where I was surrounded by all my close family I felt completely alone in my head. And that sucks. It sucks to feel alone all the time. It sucks to be stuck in your own world, especially when that world is full of negative thoughts and sadness. It sucks to always having to live this life in this alternate world in your head. All of this absolutely sucks and I completely empathise people who experience symptoms like these as these symptoms cannot be physically seen. You cannot see externally when someone is experiencing this and that makes the individual feel even more alone. This is why I am writing this article, to raise awareness and to make people realise that there are many people who feel this way. The person next to you, your brother, mother, father, friend and any person around you could be feeling this way and you just would have no idea of it.
I’m going to close off this article by describing most probably the worst side of depression. For me personally the worst symptom. The symptom is that of feeling suicidal, having active or passive suicidal thoughts and wanting to harm yourself. Feeling like things will not get better will make the person feel like there is just no point in living anymore. I have been in that place often, I am in that place right now. I feel so alone, so helpless that I feel like living is just a waste of space and dying would be a relief for me. This pain must end and I just cannot bear this pain anymore. When suicidal thoughts consume your mind you start seeing death in everything. Even when you go on a calm walk, you start picturing how you can end your life in that scenario. You start to get this intense intrusive thoughts of throwing yourself in front of a car, or something along those lines where the outcome would result in me dying. Even just describing these thoughts make me feel so saddened that people have to go through this. I cannot understand why something like depression even exists. The feeling of wanting to harm yourself so that you can feel a sense of relief is just as serious as well. Sometimes people get addicted to something like self-harming (this can be in many ways not just cutting. Self-harm is any action that harms the person) just so they can transform the emotional pain to physical pain. If you ever have any thoughts of harming yourself please tell someone you trust or if you do not have anyone to talk to call your doctor or go to the emergency room. Suicidal thoughts or self-harm thoughts are extremely serious.
Finally I hope that this article brought some insight to you, the reader as to what living with depression is like. I hope that this poorly written article conveys how I feel on the inside, what feeling depressed is like. I do not have the emotional strength to even go through this article or even re-read it. I just hope that you or anyone you love will never have to deal with this ugly illness. If unfortunately you experience this or something similar, I hope that things do get better for you. I hope that you will never lose hope. I hope that you will stay on this earth; because we need you. Even if you do not think so or believe so. This earth needs you, so please stay.