for those who are in or around sane

Saturday, February 4

what charlie said...

One of my immediate members deals with depression. For the most part, it has been life-long and triggered by unfortunate events happening to self or loved ones. I have recognized this in him for a very long time. But what I didn’t know was how to deal with it, and how to help him and myself.

What I’ve learned over the past few years is that you can really only help yourself. You can offer help to others. You can force help. You can be silent. Or use any other tactic, but nothing is guaranteed unless the person wants to help him or herself.

The one thing this man does not want to hear is that his depression is hurting me in a very real way. That in turn, I struggle with depression and anxiety. This is because: 1. I worry about the people I love and, 2. his actions directly affect my life.

And the easy way to deal with this would be to just let go of him. To turn him out of my life. For me to start over and not look back.

But, after my own therapy and help, after the mire I swam through to get myself out of my own depression, I cannot do this. so, I am left with 2 contradicting feelings. One of peace and knowledge that this man is just one person: human and flawed, beautiful and loving; a worthwhile gift from God. The other… that if he doesn’t get help, or follow-through with help, I have the fear that I will surely be pummeled again.

The saddest part is that I know quite a few people who suffer from depression. That all of them are dealing or not dealing with it in their own ways. That there is no right answer. Every new case I hear of in my family or friend group hits me harder. Its hard to be a happy person when the people around you are so sad. One of the most tragically true quotes I’ve ever read is in the book The Perks of Being a Wallflower by Steven Chbosky: “We accept the love we think we deserve”.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

You ever think (and I'm not saying this is the case in your post) that maybe people aren't depressed so much as they are bored? We live in an age when we basically do everything we can to feel busy. We watch movies, surf this here interweb, read books etc because we have soooooo much free time. And because we still have free time after all those activities we have extra time for introspection.

It's easy to develop an unhealthy self-image when you're sitting on the couch eating ice cream out of the container on a Wednesday night waiting for Lost to come on.

I'm just guessing while my grandfather was plowing the north 40 and my grandmother was cooking ALL FREAKING DAY FOR HER 16 CHILDREN that she didn't pause to think "man, I only made 3 pies for dinner, I'm a bad person". My question is, don't you think people ask "what's wrong with me?" nowadays because they haven't found something better to do?

10:51 AM

Blogger dr gonzo said...

well, generationally, yes. i think that's mostly what affects you and me. however, the person in question is older than we are. as a rolemodel for me, he knows he lacks, and really, it's only because he is depressed. he's a great guy, upstanding citizen, hard worker, did what he wanted with life for a while... and bad things happen to good people. so here we are.

When a friend called me and said she had been hospitalized for a breakdown and is now on intensive meds and therapy, I really felt like I needed to write this. it doesn’t seem to be affected by age or gender. My friend is a “happy” person, and I did NOT expect this at all, especially to the degree it happened. it really makes you think hard about yourself. At least, it does for me. I’m glad for the good I have in my life. Today, I’m ok. That’s all I can do for now…

12:07 PM

Blogger dr gonzo said...

also, those contradicting feelings i have about him also apply to the other important people in my life who are depressed. is it terrible that i have those feelings?

12:33 PM

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Not at all. But I think that you even bother to ask what's wrong with you in this situation is sort of my point. Why would you feel terrible about having honest concerns for the people you love?

6:33 PM

Blogger dr gonzo said...

because i'm a guilt-ridden catholic? :o) doesnt help i married a minnesotan lutheran... i feel terrible b/c i dont wnt to feel ill about anyone. i dont want to, but people do give me reason to do so. and i have to justify my thoughts to myself before i vocalize them.

11:20 AM


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