Thursday, June 17, 2010

A new low?

Monday was a low moment for me. Thanks to those of you who left comments or contacted me in other ways, I really do appreciate your support.

I ummed and ahhed about posting about depression. I knew that it could possibly worry some of those close to me (I'm sorry if it did), because (as I have mentioned) depression has been an issue in our family before.

But as I said in the previous post, I did set out to document this grief process, and I would be doing myself (and any readers who still hang around) a disservice if I skipped bits that might be controversial or worrying.

The other reason I wrote about it is because depression is still such a taboo subject. I think it's important for us to talk about.

Depression is so much more common than we realise. Beyond Blue's website says that 'around one million Australian adults and 100,000 young people live with depression each year.' and that 'On average, one in five people will experience depression in their lifetime.' That's a lot of people for us not to be talking about it!

When Anthony was diagnosed with depression, I found it really difficult to talk to people about it, mainly because they felt uncomfortable with it I guess, but also because they didn't know much about it. I did a fair bit of reading about it, and although it was a very trying and difficult time, I was able to support him through it.

So I wanted to put it out there. I'm not sure whether I actually am depressed or was just feeling down in the dumps on Monday, but I'm glad I posted it. Now we can start the discussion. Feel free to add your comments or experiences (although I realise that not all of us are as comfortable (?) in sharing our personal thoughts as I am!)

(By the way, I am feeling more chipper than Monday (although I will still visit the doctor), so stay tuned for some more upbeat stuff.)


  1. Hey Mel, missed you this morn. Next walk lets talk about it. Like you said, so many people are dealing with depression and don't talk about it (me included). I wonder if it has something to do with the type of lives we live -hectic, financial burdens, keeping up with the jones, processed foods?? Anyway, thinking of you and I hope you have more upbeat days than not. Ange

  2. As Joe Griffin would say, depression is a human vulnerability. Since all of us share the same underlying human needs we're all vulnerable. Back in the 1960s and 70s when my dad was in and out of a psychiatric institution in England (and finally a permanent resident), depression was regarded as a sign of moral weakness, so perhaps it's not surprising it's difficult to talk about even now. I think most people though have become or are becoming more enlightened, which is a step in the right direction at least.

  3. Wow! Thanks for such insightful and intersting comments. I think it's great that we are discussing it!

  4. Dearest Girl,Some months after your Poppa died, I took Nana to a doctor/psychiatrist. She went in as a very down older lady, and came out almost a new person! When I asked her what had happened, she said all he did was tell her she was still "fretting" over the loss of Poppa. I guess she just needed a different, unconnected person to spell it out. What they call "depression" takes many forms, and can mean different things to different people. It's the dealing with it that seems difficult, but it's not insurmountable.
    Much love, Dad

  5. I am an anonymous reader who stumbled over your blog some time ago! Having said that, I find your honesty and strength so inspiring that I cannot pull myself away. I find myself reading it not because I am nosey, but because your words are comforting and inspirational. Your wise words and strength at such a time make me in awe of you and yourr ability to deal with this traumatic time as openly and honestly as you do. You need to give yourself credit for being who you are. I dont know you, and love your blog. Keep up with this as it is such a wonderful way to express yourself.


  6. I have a severe case of 'Bottleitup-itis' which does not mix well with depression and anxiety (I know, I'm shocked too). Like you said it's so important to talk about, how else do we bring about change?

    Everyone I know does a great job of dodging the topic of depression and honestly sometimes I can't blame them, it's hard to hear. Generally speaking people want to help, but usually don't know what to say or do so avoiding the subject is easier. But it's harder for the person dealing with it. Sometimes a friend or family member asking "How are you" and really meaning it, and being willing to listen to anything they hear can mean so so much. Bringing it out of the darkness can only help. Good on you for putting it out there.


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