Depression has become something that people have normalized, in our society. Too many people will go around, crying like a wounded animal to anyone who will listen that they are depressed in some manner. But they're truly searching for sympathetic attention, lavished onto them out of pity. But people are allowed to get away with doing that, because those who actually suffer from depression don't speak out about it. Maybe out of shame or fear. But instead, we bury our emotions hoping that they will go away and pretend like everything is alright. But this causes more problems for us in the long run.
A statistic from the American Association of Suicidology states that untreated depression is the number one risk for suicide among youth. Suicide is the third leading cause of death in 15 to 24 year olds and the fourth leading cause of death in 10 to 14 year olds. Our society no longer takes depression seriously. People too often dismiss one's cry for help as a selfish gimmick for attention.
That reminds me of a time, in the last year or so. My life has been through its highs and lows, with my severe depression being the only constant in my life. I have become so good at the mask, pretending like I am not slowly withering away from the inside every single day, to the point where I can't even distinguish where the lies end and my feelings begin. I was speaking to a girl that I considered a close friend about life in general, when I hesitantly broached the topic of my depression. I admitted to her that I have suffered with clinical depression for as long as I could remember, a byproduct of my parent's divorce and bullying. What I didn't expect was for her to snort mockingly, "You don't have depression because you are way too happy." I was taken aback by this girl's ability to eagerly discount my struggles. This girl thought she knew better than me about what occurred in mylife. She was never there when I had the days where the world was a monotone, monochromic hell that suffocated me. Or how about the days where it was too hard for me to get out of bed from the sheer pain and loathing? I should've said something, stood up for the people like me who bury their emotions down inside of themselves, just hoping that they would disappear. Instead, I just did the only thing I knew how: bury.
In hindsight, I advise you to not bury what you feel. I have a process I've created called therapeutic journaling. It requires that a person journals all the emotions they feel, negative or positive, onto a single piece of paper. This gets the emotions out in the open, keeps you from internalizing them. Then, dispose of the pages in any manner you like (e.g. Ripping them up, burning them, etc.). Internalizing your emotions only serves to give more control to your depression. Don't allow your depression to control you, like how I used to let mine control me. Emotions aren't supposed to be used against you like weapons, so don't allow them to be.
Don't continue to bury.
Teenagers With Experience is an organisation created to provide teenagers with a platform to share and help others from their own experiences while also educating others on different topics. We aim to provide a safe space to all teenagers around the world and support others. You can contact us via email, social media or our contact form found on our home page.