To The People Who Have Everything, Even Depression

If you’re anything like me, you probably have a great life. You possibly have everything to be grateful for: an amazing childhood, financial stability, people who you call true friends, a caring family, and other countless blessings. If you really think about it, such a person really has no reason to be depressed, right? Years ago, when my grandfather was diagnosed with depression, I decided that no matter what happens in life, I would never go through depression. I always thought that I was just too happy for that to ever happen to me. But that’s the thing about depression or any other disorder; it doesn’t care about who you are, where you’re from or what your personality is like. It just hits you like an unexpected storm, a storm that hit me two years ago when I moved back to my hometown.

Depression is a strong term, and even though my symptoms were comparatively mild, I still felt the burden of the disorder. Every day, I would wake up feeling much different from the day before. At first, I thought it was because of the stress of adjusting to moving back to my hometown. But as I started making friends again, I realized that the nagging feeling didn’t go away. There were days when I would feel great. But other times, like a light switch, my feelings would suddenly turn the other way around.

I was too embarrassed to accept my own condition, let alone tell others about it. I feared that if I shared my condition with others, they would ask questions that I wouldn’t be able to answer. In addition, I didn’t want others to think that I had a problem or start viewing me differently because of the stigma attached to depression and other mental illnesses. Seeking help may sound like the most logical step that a depressed person should take, and I cannot argue against it. However, depression hates vulnerability and for a person like me, it is hard to open up (even to one’s self) in a day and age where depression is classified as an “illness”.

Depression is a subject that we naturally denote as negative and the term is inappropriately applied to people who are considered weak. However, one in every four people suffers from anxiety and depression. Does that mean 25% of the population is not capable of fighting for their own happiness? It is important to understand that it’s okay to be depressed sometimes. More importantly, it’s okay to have difficulty getting out of it. In fact, a healthy way to deal with emotions is to let them out and accept them. Sometimes not being okay for a while is very important to becoming truly okay. Acceptance and identification are key here; since not everything in life is positive, it is important to accept the fact that there will be negative emotions to deal with at some times of our lives. How we deal with those negative emotions is what actually matters.

I’d like to think that depression has actually made me a stronger person, and although I have not fully overcome it yet, I am sure that my new outlook on life will help me deal with my emotions in a healthier way. I also discovered that I became a different human being; I became more aware of certain things about myself and life. It took me two years to realize this, and surely it hasn’t been an easy lesson to learn. But if we make people around us realize the sensitivity of this topic and how this could happen to anyone, then I think that it would be easier for people who are suffering from depression to accept themselves and their emotions. We are all fighting our own battles. Sometimes, it is hard to discover the battle someone is fighting within based on their projected external confidence.