Our guest blogger has been kind enough to share their thoughts with us again. Remember, if you need any help or support, we are here.

The struggles with depression

"Depression for me, was one of the hardest things that I have had to deal with because it was also one of the hardest things to explain to other people.

To some people depression is you feeling sorry for yourself, wallowing over something awful that happened, you being upset for no reason, and not wanting to snap yourself out of it. People think that you can choose not to be depressed. That you can wake up one day and decide to be happy and that will be that; simple. If only it really was that easy.

I remember a friend of mine confiding in me and telling me that she was depressed because she knew I would understand how she felt, and she told me that she couldn’t even bring herself to tell her parents. She knew their response would be “what do you have to be depressed about?”, “just be happy”; not the most helpful things to say to someone who is depressed, FYI.

And it really did upset me.

The only thing that helped me at that time was that my family, especially my mum, knew how I felt. They had been through it before and they were there to support me. But even the family who hadn’t experienced it before were able and willing to try to understand me and how I felt. That meant more to me than anything. But to be in a situation where you can’t even tell the people that bought you into this world how you are feeling? That’s heart breaking.

Because being depressed is not a choice. There is not always a reason. It’s not crying all day every day. It’s not choosing not to be happy. Why would we choose not to be happy?

It's waking up every morning and feeling your heart sink because you don’t feel any better than you did yesterday. It’s not understanding why you feel sad so often. It’s not knowing why you are crying. It’s not being able to explain to someone that it’s more than being sad. It’s having moments where you realise that you need to do something to make yourself feel better, and planning out your days to reflect this, and then not having enough motivation to even lift your head off the pillow. It’s not washing because you cannot physically get out of bed to get to the shower. It’s not eating because you have no appetite and feel like you don’t deserve to nourish your body or your mind. Your body that has betrayed you by feeling weak and listless. Your mind that is telling you that you are not good enough every moment of every day. Your mind that is telling you that you will not get better. Your mind that is telling you that you are worthless, weak, vulnerable, useless, a rubbish friend, unloved, unwanted, unworthy. That is truly exhausting.

Anyone who can feel that every day but still carry on…they are truly remarkable.

And do not forget the things you do every day that to others may seem small, but to you are achievements. If you managed to drag yourself from your bed to brush your teeth, if you managed to answer the door to the postman, if you managed to pull on some clean clothes, if you managed to make yourself a meal and actually eat it, if you managed to laugh at something on the telly. Seriously…hats off to you.

We are the strongest people. We feel like we are constantly being bullied and let down by our own bodies but we still wake up every day. We still put on a brave face. We are survivors even though it may not always feel like it.

You are stronger than you think."

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