Friday, November 13, 2009

Depression in the spotlight

When a famous sports star – the keeper of our national soccer team – killed himself last week because he suffered of depression, there was finally a spotlight on a disease most people look down upon.

Most people think depression is just feeling sad or lonely or something. But depression is far more than that. Feeling sad or lonely is just being sad or lonely (or maybe both). If you have a depression (and I had a slight one coming with my burn-out), you’re not feeling anything. The world is bland, there’s basically nothing left to live for. That’s the full-blown depression, but that’s not where it starts. In the beginning you might experience a loss of drive (you know, the motivation that gets you out of bed and going in the morning and keeps you from just sitting somewhere and staring into thin air). That’s what happened to me.

Even though I’m not glad someone took his life, I’m glad the case of a well-known and well-to-do person suffering from depression has shown it’s not just something for ‘losers’ or weak people. Everyone can get a depression and the more stress you suffer (like, for instance, from being a manager or other important person), the more likely it is to get one.

If a soccer star can get a depression, everyone can. And if everyone can get a depression, then it’s nothing to be ashamed about. After all, there’s no need to be ashamed for catching a cold, as an example.

While depressions aren’t common colds, there’s nothing wrong about suffering from one. It can happen and they can be cured.

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