It's no secret that I have bipolar disorder, and I'm not (usually) ashamed to admit it. However, I think there are many people out there that don't really understand what it means. In particular, what it means for me to be depressed.
The difference between my depression and situational depression is that I don't usually have a reason to be sad. My life can be wonderful ... and actually it rather is ... yet I can still be found in a pool of tears and not even know where they are coming from. (Okay well they are OBVIOUSLY coming from my eyes ... but I meant the cause is usually unknown)
The other thing that is quite different from the usual depression is that it makes me angry and cranky all while at the very same time making me hopeless and full of despair. There is no rhyme or reason to how it comes out, it just is.
During a specific episode today, I posted on facebook ...
What I got from this statement was a plethora of people trying to propose ways in which to cheer me up while also refusing my offer of money. What the didn't seem to understand that it was truly the statement in the parenthesis that really rang true for me.
During a depressive episode there is almost NOTHING anyone can do to cheer me up. I don't want to get on the phone and talk about it because that will just make me cry and crying will only make me feel worse. I don't want company because I know I won't be good company and that will just make me feel bad. I don't want gifts because I don't feel like I deserve them. And I don't want showers of compliments because no matter how nice they are, I don't believe them. What's worse is, if I do believe them ... I don't care. They don't make me feel better anyways.
Now do not misunderstand this as Poppins looking for sympathy ... cuz that's totally NOT what this post is about. I'm just trying to help others understand why I am the way I am. Why I do and say the things I do. And what it is I truly feel.
In all honesty, I don't want anyone feeling bad for me. I have a neurological chemical imbalance ... it is what it is. It's frustrating, yes ... but it makes me who I am. Because of this illness I am intelligent, creative, sarcastic, funny and sometimes even talented. I wouldn't give those things up for a normal brain any day!
My main point is ... you don't always have to be sad or have a reason to be depressed. Sometimes you just feel like the world is crumbling in on you even though you might be the luckiest person in the world. So if a person ever tells you that there's nothing you can do to help them feel better, just let them know that you are there if ever they change their mind.
ALSO ... don't hesitate to check in on them as often as you feel necessary. HOWEVER, depressed and suicidal are two different things. NEVER leave a suicidal person alone ... EVER!
If you are thinking about harming yourself, or know someone who is, PLEASE get help immediately.
You can get help by doing one of the following:
- Call your doctor.
- Call 911 or go to a hospital emergency room to get immediate help or ask a friend or family member to help you do these things.
- Call the toll-free, 24-hour hotline of the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255); TTY: 1-800-799-4TTY (4889) to talk to a trained counselor.