Like people, depression comes in all shapes and sizes. It doesn’t present the same way in everyone and you can’t tell if someone is depressed just by looking at them. That’s why every day this week I’m introducing you to someone who deals with depression and their own unique story of it.
Today it’s Meg from megstroudblog.wordpress.com.
Who are you?
Hey I’m Meg, I am originally from Devon but now I am living in London doing a fun and interesting intern and freelance blogging! I like cats and dogs they make me so happy! And I dislike being who are rude or judgemental.
When did you first realise you had depression?
It took me so long to realise, I knew something was different about me from a very young age, I always struggled to hang on to friends and felt a general sadness about things in my life. It was like I was incapable of accepting my life and being happy. I always felt like something was wrong. And after an abusive relationship at university I came out of it feeling the worst I had ever felt, I didn’t want to leave the house or talk to anyone. I think it was a few months after that I realised I needed to go to the doctors and I was diagnosed with depression. It was actually a relief because I always thought something terrible was wrong with me.
Did diagnosis help or hinder you?
It really helped me, I was less stressed and confused. I realised that I needed to be kind to myself because I couldn’t help my thoughts and behaviour. I finally felt like I was moving forward and not round in circles.
Describe your depression.
It’s like having a negative slant on everything, whatever happened in my life I could always find a bad side of it. It made me afraid to do new things. And because my depression was linked to my anxiety it just filtered out into every area of my life. My relationships were bad, and co-dependent. I never felt settled, there was always something upsetting me. It’s a feeling I felt and tried to bury away because I didn’t want it and the more I did that the worse I felt. It’s like a voice in my head saying “you’ll never be good enough, what’s the point, why even try, people don’t take you seriously, who do you think you are” very self critical and damaging.
What impact has having depression had on your life?
As I’ve mentioned before. I struggle with relationships because I could never be “normal” And because of that I’ve spent a lot of time alone which didn’t help how I felt about myself. It always gave me doubts, it’s like a constant circle of.. “I could do this.. But I can’t” So I never did anything out of my comfort zone in fear of judgement from others or myself.
What has/hasn’t helped?
A few months ago I started to take anti-depressants which was scary, and recently I have increased my dose. I think it helps, I can never tell if it’s a placebo. But in general I do feel better, but of course I still get bad days. So going to the DRs has helped me. Something else that has helped me is getting counselling, with me my depression is linked to my childhood and it’s something I am working on everyday, it’s important to realise if the depression is linked to something is deeper rather than just an everyday feeling.
Have you had to deal with stigma?
I like to think of myself as a very honest and open person, and I haven’t tried to hide it from anyone in my family. I wouldn’t shout it from the rooftops however. I feel like there is a feeling of embarrassment, like why can’t just be happy on my own?. But I think it’s something that needs to be talked about more, and it’s more common than we think it is, people are shy hiding it, but I think it’s good when people talk about it then it becomes more acceptable. What would you like to tell someone going through depression? Don’t hide it, don’t go through it alone. It’s probably the best thing I ever did talking about it and going to the DRS. I know doctors aren’t always very helpful about these things but I got lucky with a nice female doctor. Tell someone you trust (mum, best friend, boyfriend ect) I promise you, you will feel better when it’s out and you can start to help yourself.
And what would you like to tell someone who doesn’t know anything about it?
Please do not judge. I know it’s hard for someone to understand something that have no idea about but depression is just like having a physical illness, just because you can’t see it doesn’t mean it’s not there. Mental health is very important and should be respected.
I’d like to add that getting over depression is different for everyone but it’s no way a fast thing. I believe it takes time and maybe even counselling helps. Sometimes there are deeper reasons to why you’re feeling the way you are.
Find Meg at megstroudblog.wordpress.com and on Twitter here.