Alexandra Tuttosi | Team Member
Just like any other mental illness, “depression” is not a word to be thrown around. It is a serious condition in which 1 in 5 people suffer from. Although they may not show, or tell people about it, this illness is consuming them everyday. Many people confuse or substitute general sadness or grief for depression, when it is so much more than that. It is not only an internal fight mentally, but also physically. When one goes through a depressive episode, it is not that they don’t want to get out of bed—it is that they can’t. The brain may be saying “Just sit up and everything will be okay,” but they cannot even do that. To them, their body has sunk into their mattress and the strength to even sit up is too great. This is what happens to those with minor depression. For those with major depressive disorder, their mind is telling them things like “You’re not good enough, why are you here?” This is when something like suicide comes into play.
Depression is similar to epilepsy, bipolar disorder, or schizophrenia in its seriousness. When someone’s mood is good one moment, and then bad the next, that person doesn’t say they have bipolar disorder. The same as when someone does something abnormal, we don’t say they have schizophrenia. So why is depression different?
Social media is filled with this misconception of what depression is. Depression becomes something to describe not wanting to do something (like homework), but that is not what it is. The next time someone uses the word “depression,” ask yourself if this is depression or general sadness.