There’s been a lot of dialogue surrounding depression — particularly in light of recent events — as people struggle to understand why and how it affects people in the ways that it does. And for the 350 million people worldwide with the condition, it can be just as hard to articulate its effects as it is to understand it.
Depression can make people feel like their minds have completely rebelled against them. From a lack of will to physical pain, it can cause people to function poorly at work, in school and in social activities, according to the World Health Organization. Many people who experience depression can also experience symptoms of anxiety.
But those factors are just the start. Below, find nine things people with depression know to be true (and what others can do to help alleviate them). The frustration that comes when someone suggests you can “snap out of it.”
The hard truth is, depression is not the sort of thing you can just wake up and be over one morning — and suggesting such may be sending an unsupportive message. According to John F. Greden, M.D., the executive director of the University of Michigan Comprehensive Depression Center, these phrases often stem from a lack of understanding of mental illness.
“When [loved ones] don’t understand what’s happening, their responses are ‘suck it up’ and ‘stop feeling sorry for yourself,’” Greden tells The Huffington Post. “It’s not understood that these are underlying illnesses and chemical abnormalities, so what they’ll do is use these phrases. Read more