So many things being said about depression right now I feel like this is a good opportunity to say something while everyone is still paying attention.
I see that suicide hotline being passed around like it’s a fucking cure.
So I’m going to give a little bit of advice for those of you who truly want to make a difference in a depressed persons life or make a tiny dent in this overwhelming disease.
My advice is simple and honest,
DON’T BE AN ASSHOLE
Don’t be the person who shames someone for seeking help. (Therapy, counseling, antidepressants, a fucking shoulder to cry on)
Don’t be condescending, “you just need a change of attitude”, “try harder”, “stop moping”, “that’s not depression”, “you just want attention”, “we didn’t have depression in my day”
(Um you did, you just didn’t call it that)
Don’t make someone feel bad for being sad. EVERYONE feels sadness, it’s perfectly human to feel sad.
Sadness is not a sign of weakness.
Don’t make someone feel like they’re worthless/a burden. I see this message being said/shown everywhere, all around.
There’s nothing you can say that will “fix it”. You simply can’t, it’s a complicated issue.
You can listen, for sure, if you’re the kind of person who is good at listening. Not everyone is and that’s okay.
And last but not least, if someone has attempted suicide or successfully committed suicide don’t fucking think they’re weak. Because you honestly don’t know. You don’t know what cards that person is dealt with, their background, their support system, the chemicals inside their brain, how long they’ve been fighting for… you don’t know anything…
Even doctors don’t have all the answers, not even science has a real grasp on this disease.
I always think of depression as being “in the negatives”. You can try so hard to be at “zero” and make such good progress… but then someone who started off at 1 and is now a 5 thinks of you as “lazy”… and it just kills you.
There are human beings suffering in silence, in shame. We need to show compassion, even if we ourselves don’t truly understand it.
That’s it. That’s my advice.
Don’t be a dick.