Depression isn't simple. It never is. True, deep depression hurts you in ways that most people can't even fathom.
Sure, the average person may feel down on occasion. The depression I'm speaking of, however, is clinical. Debilitating, painful depression isn't simple. It's incredibly complex, and affects the person's life in a profound way.
Allow me to list just a few of the common symptoms experienced by people in my life who suffer from clinical depression.
Fatigue. I'm not talking a general weariness; I'm talking about the feeling that staying in bed all day without eating feels better than trying to confront the day. Don't mistake this for laziness; this is due to not only mental exhaustion, fighting battles with their own mind, but also a deep desire to avoid disappointment. Sleeping offers the chance of happiness in dreams, however fleeting they are.
Nausea. When depression hits the hardest, it can make you feel like you're suffering from a form of food poisoning.
Hopelessness. The feeling of a complete inability to solve the problems that come our way in our day to day lives. This leads into the next commonality with depression:
Anxiety. Anxiety disorders run hand-in-hand with depression. It can be as simple as a general sense of nervousness at social events to extreme fight-or-flight at even the slightest hint of difficulty.
The worst part of all of this is that it isn't as simple as exhibiting willpower to control it. Clinical depression isn't simple, and goes well beyond willpower; It is like any other debilitating disease in that it requires more than mind over matter to control.
That's why we invest so much into the mental sciences. Therapy. Psychiatry. Medication. These are not wastes. These are designed to help those who aren't fortunate enough to have a mind that lets them be who they are.
Sadly, the world still isn't fully equipped to help those who need it. Those who suffer from depression and other ailments can have difficulty not only seeking out, but finding adequate help. Combine that with the fact that many people who suffer from extreme depression tend to not have much in the way of financial stability makes it much harder to afford the help they need, which makes for a vicious cycle.
And, of course, the upcoming Republican leadership has no desire to ensure funding for that help, with plans to cut & gut numerous systems designed to help people who suffer.
Depression isn't simple. If you'd like to join me in The Headlines Project's Depression Isn't Simple piece, either download & print the temporary tattoo (my logo is optional), or share this post with your friends.
The Headlines Project is a social experiment where I print (using temporary tattoos) short "headlines" on my bald head with a web address on the back of my skull linking back to these posts. View the other Headlines.