Dirty little secret…

Depression. America’s dirty little secret.

It’s estimated that roughly ~10% of Americans 18 years or older suffer from Depression in the United States alone. If you include children over 12, the statistics go up.

From that, 30% of Women suffer from Depression, but only 30% of them will seek help, according to the CDC. And, unfortunately, 15% of those women will commit suicide. Men are 4x more likely to commit suicide than women.

Of all of the developed countries in the world, 15% of the population are Depressed. If you are an African-American, then you are not only much more likely to suffer from Depression in your lifetime, but you’re also much less likely to seek medical assistance.

Sadly, 2/3 of people with Depression will never seek treatment.

All this information is great, but the reality is, you may have it and not know it. Here are a few symptoms to help you know if you have Depression:

  • Sadness, anxiety, or "empty" feelings
  • Decreased energy, fatigue, being "slowed down"
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in activities that were once enjoyed, including sex
  • Insomnia, oversleeping, or waking much earlier than usual
  • Loss of weight or appetite, or overeating and weight gain
  • Feelings of hopelessness and pessimism
  • Feelings of helplessness, guilt, and worthlessness
  • Thoughts of death or suicide, or suicide attempts
  • Difficulty concentrating, making decisions, or remembering
  • Restlessness, irritability or excessive crying
  • Chronic aches and pains or physical problems that do not respond to treatment

If you think that you’re suffering from depression, get help. It’s just the blues? It’s probably depression. Americans are so ingrained into the work harder and longer that they’ve forgotten to take care of themselves. Until very recently, Depression was an embarrassment and unacceptable in society. If you were diagnosed with it you were shipped off to an asylum and people, including your family, whispered about it with little sniggers.

Here’s a soul bearing secret… I have suffered from depression for about 17 years. I’ve been treated for only 8. For a very long time I didn’t seek help. You see the “Grumpy-Pants’s” suck it up and tuff it out. They deal with it, they get over it… they don’t go a Dr to get medicine and they certainly don’t pay good money to “talk about it”.

Is my depression under control? Mostly. I still have my weeks. Holidays are very hard for me, since Nana’s death. They will continue to get harder when more loved ones go on to the next lifetime. This holiday is no exception. I do what I can to control it, but it’s mostly me forcing myself to participate in life, going out to lunch with dear friends and trying to move forward.

Will I ever be out of it? Probably not. I’m convinced that it’s a chemical imbalance. Add the fact that I have Fibromyalgia, and there’s a scenario for a constant struggle. How is one able to not be depressed, when they are in constant pain? Add a propensity to be depressed and you’ve got yourself a fight.

Unlike other people, I have never been one to consider suicide. Even when I was a teenager, I was very against it. I’ve always had a hyper understanding for how uniquely special we are… I believed Ronald Regan when he said it. We are unique, as a life form and each of us is special for no other reason than that we create by something of a miracle.

If you think you’re suffering from Depression, speak to your family Dr. If you are afraid other people will “find out” then don’t tell them. Your Dr. can not legally tell anyone about your health with out your permission.

But don’t live with it. Life is such an amazing adventure. Life can be so beautiful and creative, with just a little effort, and it’s certainly difficult enough with out enduring something that can be so easily resolved.

Fizz

© ‘Fizz’ 2009

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About Fizz

*I'm a Northern Girl livin' in the South. *I graduated with a BS in Geophysics from Michigan Technological University (MTU). *I have critters: 2 dogs & 1 cat. *I love thunder and rain days. Too much sunshine gets on my nerves. (How I survive in Texas I do not know!) *I'm trying to remove swearing from my vocabulary (Good Luck!). *I'm the last single in my group of friends. The rest of the turn coats got married. *Sadly, the above friends are now procreating. Now the world will have yet more strange and twisted individuals that will have to go to an Engineering School to survive. *Yoopers do exist. Look on a map. *Marvin the Martian and I have a lot in common. We're both cranky when crossed and generally like our own way. *I will never be a model! (Thank god, that starvation stuff has GOT to be painful!!!). *I am not Fat! (Even though that little voice behind my right ear might tell me that every single day). *I am normal. Whatever that means! *Yes, you can be smart and not be a geek. *I've been told I'm not boring. We'll see. *Much to my irritation, I have been described as Eccentric. *I cannot spell! *Being Single is a frame of mind. *Who said life was fair?
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9 Responses to Dirty little secret…

  1. Grandpa Dewey says:

    Fizz, thank you for this, I know that I am depressed sometimes. I have talked with my doctors about it, its only anxiety they say just something I will live with.

    Like

  2. Beth says:

    Excellent post.I know depression as I suffered from it after Jim died. I still have sad feelings but they are not constant. I just am getting on with my life. The only doctor that my insurance would cover did me more harm than good. What I needed most of all was grief counseling and the closest to me was a 60 mile round trip because I live int the boonies. I have finally come to grips with this.

    Like

  3. Joe says:

    I’ve had my wars with this over the years but have been very fortunate to have a very active and strong support system in my church and family. I’ve never had to go it alone nor be ashamed to ask for help. It’s not a thing you can ignore or pretend away…like every skeleton this one gets more vicious when hidden in the closet.

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  4. Sherry says:

    Bravo! Excellant post fiz. I think we all have those symptoms once in awhile in our lifetime but when it’s more then not it’s time to seek help Especially when nothing has happened in your life ( like losing a loved one). You are brave for talking about it and that’s a good thing. Not enough people do and it’s nothing to be ashamed of.HugsSherry

    Like

  5. john says:

    Had my bout a number of years ago. Took the meds for almost a year, hel[ped me deal with it and get myself out of the dumper. I came to realize it was my state of mind I can control that. With counseling I can now recongonize the blues and how to counteract the depression. Holidays and anniversaries of lost love ones are toughest. I brighten up my house with seasonal decorations and this time of year with lights. I try to create a festive mood and use selftalk a lots. It was not easy but now I look back with some laughs and also signs.Oh the pictures were with my little point and shoot. I am learning how to use it for better effect now. For the artsy stuff I get out the medium formatt camera. Take care and have an enjoyable , festive holiday season.

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  6. CAROL says:

    The meds they had me on for depression or anxiety were terrible. It took me almost 6 months or more to wean myself off them. I NEVER want to go there again.. and if I need something I take the mildest thing I can get. Thanks for your support.. I cherish your friendship and advice. : )

    Like

  7. Babblelot says:

    Chemical imbalance sure causes allot of life interference. I have fought depression panic attacks since young and still do. The human will has kept me above water. The side effects of those so called meds are worse than depression and in the past I’ve experienced quite ah number. Talking (babbling) helps so very much and a close buddy friend who knows you so well. I hope research will learn more about the amazing brain in it’s complexity. I will never go back to a Doc about that. But I will keep babbling and hoping one day to find some friends to laugh an cry with and make life enjoyable again.

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  8. Babblelot says:

    Oops I forgot I wanted to mention. I am one who has experienced and I DO talk about the people who walk away from depressed people instead of helping them. Help? Ya, an ear to listen, advice and most of all cheering them up and laughter can help pull ah person out of the rock bottom where’s there’s no hope.

    Like

  9. ♬ŠŨŇ says:

    You are right . Life is for living and if there is anything, I mean anything to help make life better, then you should take it or do it. Fizz take care.

    Like

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