"Analyzing" Depression

I read something very disturbing the other day. I read a blog post by a friend who was complaining about how tired she was of having to give advice and console all of her friends. She expressed the disdain she had for people who continually come to her asking for help with one issue or another. She explained how a few of her friends were experiencing extreme depression or anxiety; and went on to say that she has realized that everyone who has suffered or is suffering from depression is not a victim, but their own worst enemy. She claims that people only suffer from depression because of something that they did to themselves. Huh? So in other words, there are millions of people out there who are ruining their own lives on purpose. O...kay...
Well, speaking from personal experience, I can honestly say that this theory is part crap and part reality. Depression stems from many different things. And yes, there are some things that we do to ourselves that cause our own demise. Smoking too much weed in college can lead to flunking out; which may lead to a dead-end job someday; which may lead to a person being depressed. Now, in that case, I can see how it was their fault. But what about the person who suffers from depression because it runs rampant in their family history? What about the person who is depressed because they are suffering from a life-threatening illness? What about the girl who lost her virginity to a rapist? I guess she doesn't have a right to be depressed either.
It is true that once we are dealt with a certain hand, it is our responsibility to make the best out of every situation. It does take a tremendous amount of work to turn your life around, but it is not a lost cause. Some get through depression faster and quicker than others. But there are also some who manage to "relapse" and become depressed again later on down the line. Personally, I would rather take my time and heal knowing that I would be free of any chains for the rest of my life as opposed to healing quickly then have my life crumble before my own eyes 2 years down the road. Healing from depression is a journey that is unlike no other, and there is no one who can determine the exact path to "greatness". It is purely trial and error, and a WHOLE lot of prayer. It takes getting in touch with your inner self and making peace with who you are. There are no text books that can tell you how to do that. And there is no one in this world who can tell you when or how you will heal. If it were that simple, Psychiatry offices around the country would be closing their doors by the dozens.
I have never been one to judge others. And the older I get, the more I realize that life is anything but predictable. I am amazed every day by the amount of people who share their stories with me, and have been down that unpleasant road. But I am a firm believer that everything happens for a reason. Our journey through the maze is just a small part of the story.


This Bug said...

"If it were that simple, Psychiatry offices around the country would be closing their doors by the dozens."

A to the Men! While I can say that there are plenty of over-medicated people out there, I still think none of those drugs would exist if the problem was simply a topical one. I can't say that I've ever been clinically depressed- but I remember those days of not wanting to get out of bed, going to work on auto-pilot and crawling right back into bed by 7 p.m. to do it all over again. Something was wrong, but it wasn't until I firmly acknowledged it that my healing process began. It took prayer, family and forgiving myself for thing I regretted.

It sounds like your friend is just a bit world-weary and has not had depression strike close to home. Hopefully she never will- but there is much truth to your words. That maze is just a part of the walk we ALL take at some point or another.

Great post!

ShoppingKharma said...

Excellent Blog by the way! I do have to say "Wow!" That's pretty cold and perhaps this person is incredibly immature and insensitive.

I have to agree, many, many psychiatry doors would be closing by the thousands. It's a bit more complicated than that. Any relation to Tom Cruise or perhaps another one of those Scientology Thumpers.