If you want a serious and credible Depression Q&A, you may click here. Alternatively, read on …
How do you know you’re depressed? When life looks black, you can see no light in your future, and everything stinks. Oh, and you’re not locked in your teenage brother’s wardrobe. In the latter case, get out and re-evaluate.
If I get depressed, will I put on weight? You might. Or you might not. You may also sleep more. Or less. Whatever.*
I think I’m depressed. My friend was depressed last year and still has some medication left over. Can I save myself a trip to the doctor and just take her old meds? Sure – and why not recycle her snotty tear-soaked tissues from back then while you’re about it? Can’t hurt, right?**
I’ve read recently that booze doesn’t make you depressed. So I can keep drinking, right? In my official opinion as, well, no form of health professional, drinking alcohol while depressed or prone to depression is about as sensible as choosing petrol as your flame retardant of choice. Alcohol’s a depressant, not an antidepressant. Accelerator, not brake, folks.
If I go to a psychiatric hospital, it’ll be full of weirdos and pschos, right? Perhaps. But probably less than your local shopping centre, so I reckon you’ll survive.
What’s it like to live with depression? It sucks. But, you know, you either live with it – or you don’t. (Touch of black psych ward humour there.)
No, seriously, I’m actually depressed. Really and truly. What should I do? If your life, or the life of anyone around you, is in danger you must call the emergency services immediately (000 in Australia). If you are not in life-threatening danger but are still living through tough times, there is a list of helplines here. You can also attend your hospital’s emergency department. If you can hold on a little longer, make an appointment with your GP.
* This is part of my issue with the DSM model of psychiatry … but I’ll save that rant for another post. Or series of posts.
** Hopefully you’re not so depressed that your sarcasm radar hasn’t malfunctioned. If not, seek help sooner than you had been going to. (… you were going to seek help, right?)