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Old 11.12.2010, 11:12
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Re: Depression Sufferers

Further to my previous post: it is not for me to judge who has experienced proper depression, and who has merely experienced melancholy. Until you have actually experienced the former for yourself, each is indistinguishable from the other.

If, when you are depressed, you can:
  • Go for a run;
  • Go out and enjoy yourself in company for a few hours;
  • Choose what to wear before going out;
  • Enjoy a train ride in the mountains;
  • Think rationally about your life and where it is heading;
  • Worry about the future;
  • Consider the effects of your condition upon others;
  • Make an informed decision about feeling better;
  • See a way out;
  • Create any kind of art;
Then you are probably experiencing melancholy, rather than actual depression.


If, however, you:
  • Find it almost impossible to make yourself get up and have a shower;
  • Cannot see any hope of an improvement;
  • Understand nothing of anything but the pain you're experiencing;
  • Just want it all to end;
  • Find it difficult to make a cup of tea, let alone write a symphony or paint a picture or go for a walk;
Then you are experiencing real depression.

This is not about point-scoring: it is vital that we differentiate between melancholy and depression, just as it is vital that we differentiate between a cold and pneumonia. You wouldn't tell a person with pneumonia that they should lay off the drugs and just have a hot cup of lemon and honey, would you? Why, then, do some people feel it is acceptable to tell someone with depression that they should stop taking their prescribed drugs and do what they do to combat their fits of melancholy?

I have had the pleasure of experiencing melancholy several times in my life - indeed, up until very recently, I'd enjoy a bout of the "Black Dog" more regularly than I'd catch a cold. I know how bad it feels, how introspective one can become, how much it affects one's life, and how positive it can be afterwards. I also know that melancholy is not depression, just as a cold is not pneumonia, just as a cut finger is not an amputation, just as a headache is not a brain tumour.

When you get depression, I can assure you that you will understand the difference.
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  #182  
Old 11.12.2010, 11:14
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Re: Depression Sufferers

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For the sake of discussion though. Do you think that there are people that actually like being depressed? That for them this is a normal way of life and like feeling that way
I don't think that people could like being depressed.

If I knew it was all I can have/live, if I had no hope to get better (with or without the help of drugs or other things) I would prefer ....... than live a depressed live without hope.

It's like to live in a dark world.

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Melancholy, yes, I'm sure there are people who get some kind of enjoyment from it.
It's quite recent they put Melancholy in the "depressive state" I think. For me it's more linked to a kind sadness.
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  #183  
Old 11.12.2010, 12:50
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Re: Depression Sufferers

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I would tend to disagree as there are various forms of depression and causes of it. Exercise can be a tool to battle depression for some people. In other cases, depression can not be just chosen away. It's a complex condition that doesn't always have an answer that's found in a book.
Agreed, and important to keep in mind that the writers of these motivation manuals, may not be academically qualified in all the areas they write about. eg: Has Mr Covey got either a research background, or an academic one in the correlation of enzymes/hormones and the onset or continuation of depression? Although I am sure that these self help books are helpful to some, I hate to think of the added guilt trip, frustration and stress placed on those who read and do not find it the magical cure trigger at all.
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  #184  
Old 11.12.2010, 13:04
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Re: Depression Sufferers

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Two excellent points over here.
1. Exercise is always a vital tool for fighting depression. Healthy body, healthy mind. The two have to work hand in hand. If you are not exercising (and quite hard at that), depression will be that much harder to beat. Your body will release so many great drugs into your system when you keep it happy with exercise that it will make it much easier to get both of the integrated systems working together.
2. Depression cannot ever just be chosen away, but on the other hand only you can choose to start the fight and the healing process.
1.Although I generally arrive back from active sports, with a heightened sense of energy and wellbeing, I do challenge the "Always" in the first point above. I am sure it must vary on an individual basis, as does so much of how our bodies function.

2. Sometimes only time, and support from empathetic, caring folk, is all that is needed. eg: the depression that is felt after a loss ( death of someone important etc) Then it is not a matter of choosing at all, but simply a matter of allowing the time for the stress hormones atc, to settle back into more of an equalibrium - again, with a lot of individual variations.
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  #185  
Old 11.12.2010, 14:21
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Re: Depression Sufferers

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For the sake of discussion though. Do you think that there are people that actually like being depressed? That for them this is a normal way of life and like feeling that way? Not likely i agree but maybe...
I doubt if people actually like being depressed. I am sure some people suffering depression find it easier to remain in this state than address the issues. There can be a certain level of security in not facing the issues that led to the depression. Perhaps it is the path of least resistance.

Dealing with depression can lead to many issues coming to the fore: Problems from the past, behavioral changes, reactions of others, facing up to responsibilities etc.

Avoidance of the issues is often much easier than facing up to the problems. This may give the impression that the individual is happy to remain as they are.
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  #186  
Old 11.12.2010, 17:26
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Re: Depression Sufferers

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I doubt if people actually like being depressed. I am sure some people suffering depression find it easier to remain in this state than address the issues. There can be a certain level of security in not facing the issues that led to the depression. Perhaps it is the path of least resistance.

Dealing with depression can lead to many issues coming to the fore: Problems from the past, behavioral changes, reactions of others, facing up to responsibilities etc.

Avoidance of the issues is often much easier than facing up to the problems. This may give the impression that the individual is happy to remain as they are.
Yes, but the reason it maybe "easier" is because being depressed can make many things ( eg: decision making, having energy etc) so much harder."

It seems to me that a lot of people are seeing depression as something that can be changed by a change in behaviour. My understanding is that it is actually a chemical something, ( imbalance? reaction to stress? ) that may or not be able to be helped by changing behaviour - eg: depression caused through work stress = get rid of the work stress and the depression may disappear. If I have read correctly, the original poster may be suffering depression due to stress about certain unsatisfactory parts of living here - interesting to know if that person had ever suffered from depression before, or not. Coming to terms , or altering aspects of life here, may or may not "cure" the depressive feelings.)

However, other people seem to have some sort of permanent feelings of depression, and that being despite been successful with career, social life etc. that depressed feeling is still lurking. They may also be adept at completely hiding those feelings from all around them. RIP to a popular, educated, sporting, culturally aware, well travelled, friend of mine.
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  #187  
Old 11.12.2010, 18:16
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Re: Depression Sufferers

The offhand way people refer to periodic bouts of melancholy and full-fledged depression almost interchangeably bugs me too; as others have said before on this thread, while you may be able to buck yourself out of the one with exercise or activity, depression can be so debilitating as to make even something as basic as getting out of bed beyond contemplation.

DB, thank you for this painfully clear description of the two. I think it's probably as close to those of us who have not suffered depression can come to understanding how crippling it can be.

Quote:
Further to my previous post: it is not for me to judge who has experienced proper depression, and who has merely experienced melancholy. Until you have actually experienced the former for yourself, each is indistinguishable from the other.

If, when you are depressed, you can:
  • Go for a run;
  • Go out and enjoy yourself in company for a few hours;
  • Choose what to wear before going out;
  • Enjoy a train ride in the mountains;
  • Think rationally about your life and where it is heading;
  • Worry about the future;
  • Consider the effects of your condition upon others;
  • Make an informed decision about feeling better;
  • See a way out;
  • Create any kind of art;
Then you are probably experiencing melancholy, rather than actual depression.


If, however, you:
  • Find it almost impossible to make yourself get up and have a shower;
  • Cannot see any hope of an improvement;
  • Understand nothing of anything but the pain you're experiencing;
  • Just want it all to end;
  • Find it difficult to make a cup of tea, let alone write a symphony or paint a picture or go for a walk;
Then you are experiencing real depression.
...
When you get depression, I can assure you that you will understand the difference.
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  #188  
Old 11.12.2010, 19:35
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Re: Depression Sufferers

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If, when you are depressed, you can:
.....
Then you are probably experiencing melancholy, rather than actual depression.
....
This is not about point-scoring: it is vital that we differentiate between melancholy and depression, just as it is vital that we differentiate between a cold and pneumonia. You wouldn't tell a person with pneumonia that they should lay off the drugs and just have a hot cup of lemon and honey, would you? Why, then, do some people feel it is acceptable to tell someone with depression that they should stop taking their prescribed drugs and do what they do to combat their fits of melancholy?
....
When you get depression, I can assure you that you will understand the difference.

Melancholia is a type of depression, and can be as debilitating as any other kind of depression, short of catatonic depression which is associated with schizophrenia. I'm not sure what the point is of differentiating it, unless you want mean to enumerate the various kinds of depressions.

There are volumes of information written on the subject - from its biological aspect, the role of belief and psychology in depression, to the social conditions that are associated with it. The Wiki has some high level informational notes on this for those who want to research:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Major_d...isorder#Social

Last edited by Phos; 11.12.2010 at 19:56.
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  #189  
Old 11.12.2010, 20:03
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Re: Depression Sufferers

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I'm not sure what the point is of differentiating it, unless you want mean to enumerate the various kinds of depressions.
Probably the point is that for serious depression, as medical psychosis, there's very definitely a point in going to a doctor and calls for someone to help themselves may not be sufficient.

Merely being sad shouldn't be medicalised.
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  #190  
Old 11.12.2010, 20:08
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Re: Depression Sufferers

*hugs* - i think everyone should get a hug at least once a day! it's just how i feel, that a hug can make me happy & smile even when im feeling crap & down! oh and especially because hugs are free to give and recieve right?! =) so tomorrow - give someone a hug and try not to feel good & smile - let me know how it goes =)
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  #191  
Old 11.12.2010, 20:13
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Re: Depression Sufferers

I agree with the Hug. It has an incredible effect on me.

And it's even better when the person who hugs you is the person you love
(and who loves you)

some great memories here
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  #192  
Old 11.12.2010, 20:15
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Re: Depression Sufferers

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Melancholia is a type of depression, and can be as debilitating as any other kind of depression, short of catatonic depression which is associated with schizophrenia. I'm not sure what the point is of differentiating it, unless you want mean to enumerate the various kinds of depressions.

There are volumes of information written on the subject - from its biological aspect, the role of belief and psychology in depression, to the social conditions that are associated with it. The Wiki has some high level informational notes on this for those who want to research:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Major_d...isorder#Social
Sounds like an awful lot of book lernin' to me.
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Old 11.12.2010, 20:35
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Re: Depression Sufferers

Happy memories are a wonderful thing Bertrand - but at some time, you have to accept they are 'just' memories and it's time to move on. I wish you much happiness - don't try so hard perhaps. xx
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  #194  
Old 11.12.2010, 21:30
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Re: Depression Sufferers

I met a couple of young girls from Africa a few years ago and they said that they had not experienced depression until they moved to Switzerland. Hard to say whether it is a learned behaviour or a result of physiology. It is reported that there is a high incidence of depression in Scandinavian countries. It is suggested that it is due to a lack of vitamin D. We get vitaminm D from the sun. We can also take it in pill or liquid. There has been a tremedous amount of research and reports about vitamin D in the past couple of years.

Often people with depression experience a sense of hopelessness.
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  #195  
Old 12.12.2010, 00:22
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Re: Depression Sufferers

I'm not sure if anybody had yet mentioned this in this thread or similar threads, but it may be an idea to get a complete check up and blood work before determining that the distress is melancholy or depression.

There are many medical reasons which can cause mental distress and trigger symptoms mimicking depression. Even severe weight loss or aenemia, a real lack of minerals and certain vitamins (hence the necessary blood tests) can make create an imbalance.
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  #196  
Old 12.12.2010, 08:12
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Re: Depression Sufferers

totally agree about blood test. Do it also if you think you are doing well, you could have some surprises.....

Last edited by Bertrand - Geneva; 12.12.2010 at 08:57.
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Old 12.12.2010, 08:47
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Re: Depression Sufferers

This happened to me when I first lost a lot of weight several years ago. I started losing my hair, could not sleep, had moments of real anxiety and heart palpitations. Since I tend to be a rather upbeat go-get'em type of person, I hadn't the faintest idea what to do with the new situation, it was almost debilitating.
It was so out of character for me. The doctor did a full check up and found that I was very anemic and lacked essential minerals.
Once that was fixed, the symptoms and anxiety did fade away.
It's worth checking the physical side before considering anything else.
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Old 12.12.2010, 13:56
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Re: Depression Sufferers

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Probably the point is that for serious depression, as medical psychosis, there's very definitely a point in going to a doctor and calls for someone to help themselves may not be sufficient.

Merely being sad shouldn't be medicalised.
For those who are so depressed that they can't even take care of their basic needs, they ought to see a doctor and get medication.


But for the most part, the most common depressions around here look like this:

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I met a couple of young girls from Africa a few years ago and they said that they had not experienced depression until they moved to Switzerland. Hard to say whether it is a learned behaviour or a result of physiology. It is reported that there is a high incidence of depression in Scandinavian countries. It is suggested that it is due to a lack of vitamin D. We get vitaminm D from the sun. We can also take it in pill or liquid. There has been a tremedous amount of research and reports about vitamin D in the past couple of years.

Often people with depression experience a sense of hopelessness.

This is quite common with expats making a transition to living here. In fact, I know of very few who did not go through such phases. For a foreigner making a transition to living in Switzerland, it can be an ego-crushing experience.

These kinds of depressions are brought on by a sense of living in a society with low level hostility. The skills of life that one has learned and accumulated elsewhere may not be applicable here, so one's self-worth is devalued. It affects one's self image, and self esteem. And then, to not be able to leave for whatever circumstance can lead to a sense of feeling trapped, helpless and hopeless.

I know a number of people going through this now. I am susceptible to this. These people desperately need a change of outlook, because this kind of depression is caused by outlook. I'm not so sure medication is appropriate for this kinds of depression, unless it is medication that opens a new door to a new and different perspective.
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Old 12.12.2010, 14:04
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Re: Depression Sufferers

I've found the Tao te Ching to be helpful in difficult times, kind of just to make things clear a bit when things are seemingly not so clear.

Also recommended to me (but I haven't read it yet): http://soilandhealth.org/03sov/0304s...030403toc.html - How To Live Quietly.
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Old 12.12.2010, 14:09
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Re: Depression Sufferers

Useful post, thanks!
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