Thursday, May 14, 2015

Depression: this is 'courageous', but it shouldn't be.

...I am going to talk about what I know – depression and anxiety. I find it hard to fully describe what happens in my brain because honestly, I don’t know what is normal and what is not, but I will give it a go.
Getting up in the morning is the hardest part of any day, not because I am lazy, but because waking up hurts. I am so tired every minute of every day, that there is always a need for more sleep, but, I have to get up so I do. This is the first battle I face each day....
Part of the point of Mental Health awareness week is that we no longer have to use words like 'courageous' for people speaking about what it's like to be mentally ill. After all, if someone describes what it's like to have the flu', or a broken leg, we don't call them courageous for describing it.

Update: Katherine Welby has written for the Telegraph too, worth reading. And a piece from the CofE comms people about the church and mental health, and how we can do a better job supporting people. 


  1. The worst aspect of the stigma of depression, is that the depression magnifies the stigma in the mind of the sufferer,
    There is stigma, dont doubt it. My manager, who was the one bullied, crucified me into suicidal depression over threats to my job and career due to an intermittent physical health problem damaging my sickness record. Outside of my control, I was put iin fear of losing my job at any moment. he was very keen on team building. But when i broke down none of my team visited or phoned me. When I eventually awoke in hospital after my attempt, I was asked ii was glad i had not died. No I wasnt. I wanted to be dead, I was angry, frustrated, a failure in this too as well as all the other reasons. But the Lord rescued me from despair. Scarred, but I hope a little purified, for Him. Make sure your children truly know that you love them with all that you are, that you are proud of them. For while i have come to terms with mere equivocality and conditionality, 50 years later, i still cannot entirely believe the Lord loves me completely. Work in progress...

  2. Thankyou, we throw around words like 'team' and 'community' (and 'church familiy') as if using them often enough will make them true. I wonder if the stigma is partly that people without depression just don't know what to say or how to respond, so they just don't say/do anything. I find the same with bereavement, it can be more isolating because those who should be supportive would rather say/do nothing than say/do the wrong thing. We all need a bit more courage, and a lot more understanding.

  3. Bereavement is a terrible process to go through. You need time to adapt to a new way of thinking. You're quite right, close friends and relatives avoid you. I speak from the heart.
    Personal courage can be helped along enormously by kind words, rather than a stony silence. I speak from experience!