I suffer with depression, and yes suffer is the right word to use there. Depression can be brutal, depression can lie to you, depression can tell you that you’re worthless, that the fight isn’t worth it, that you are different to others and that you were born to be this way. Depression sucks.
Whether you suffer with depression alongside other ill health, such as PTSD, Anxiety, or even physical health matters it’s definitely not a fight that you’d choose to battle. The wonderful thing is there are some fantastic organisations, movements and individuals out there who strive to create a united front when it comes to battling depression, and evening battling stigma.
The Depression Army is a fantastic, international movement that is working tirelessly to transform the conversation about mental illness. The Depression Army is working to create an environment of mutual support, one where depression isn’t seen as a taboo matter.
“Why? Because depression is real and all too common. And it has risen so much to the point that most people will go through depression themselves or help a loved one through it at some time during their life. We can’t address this worldwide problem until we learn to talk about it openly, without fear or shame.” (DepressionArmy.com)
I’m very very honoured to say that I joined the Depression Army community and I will be actively working to help toward the goal of changing how society deals with depression. I’ve seen stigma firsthand, and personally I think depression falls prey to many different types of stigma. For example, simply saying you’re ‘depressed’ in everyday conversation when you’ve been having a rough day is stigmatising in itself. You may not realise, and you may not have mention the term depression or depressed with the intention of being malicious, however it’s little things such as this which I feel needs to be tackled!
I will continue to be open about my own experiences, and to join in with others’ discussions. If you have experience of depression, or know someone who is fighting this battle, or even if you are passionate about changing perspectives of mental illness then check out the Depression Army over at their website.