Monday, October 8, 2012

Down in the Valley

Cover of "If you Think You Have Depressio...
Cover via Amazon
Usually, I write on things that are happy, calm, and serene, with a little bit of chaos in the middle. This is a different type of post I am writing about.  The very idea of something that upsets a person scares most people, and when bad news comes, they do not want to deal with it.
Let me ask you two questions, have you ever been depressed, and if so, how have you dealt with it?   I asked this because there are two kinds of depression, the kind you can get out of, the kind that you can't.   I am not a psychologist so I cannot give you a solution to a problem that is as deep as depression.  We all have problems, and if you are not careful, these problems can take you there, and keep you there.  We all have been upset about that problem, only to pick yourself up, and move one when the problem is solved.
If you find yourself not able to pick up your life after a problem, there is a test on the Mental Health America website you can take here, If you can answer yes to questions such as "do you have little interest or pleasure in doing things?", Are you having problems sleeping or sleeping too much?", or "Feeling bad about yourself.", then maybe you should talk to someone.
The first thing is to admit you have depression, which is not easy.  Admitting to anything that hurts a person mentally or physically is not well taken by some people.  No one likes to go to the doctor or to seek anyone that is professional because we are human.  I think it is within our genome to take control, stew about it, and then come up with an excuse on why action was not done before.   Well, I am here to tell you that it is never too late for you to seek help.  If you are still alive, it is never too late.  People also feel ashamed about getting the help they need, no matter what the problem is.  Going to someone helps you sort things out in your life. These people do not judge, it is confidential, and you may not need any medication.   Your depression may not be a true definition of the word, but it helps to find out what the problem is.  Counselors are a source of resource information.  You can just go to a counselor for starters, and then from there, if it requires further looking into, then you may need a specialist.  Only a specialist is allowed to prescribe medication.
There is one thing about this test I would like to suggest, that is,  this test is only to find out if you think you have depression.  Never give a self-diagnosis to yourself.  If you have a bullet in your head, would you look on the internet and then attempt to take it out yourself?  No, you would not.  Well, treat the test as that, find out, and then go to someone, even if is a counselor. I am sorry I am repeating a lot of things, but I thought it is important to get it into your head if you or someone you love has depression.  If you are not sure or you do not want to take the test, that is ok, there should be a 24/7 hotline for you to call in your local area.  This call can be just to help you make that decision.
I am saying all of these things because I have a personal story...My mother and father had to make this decision about my oldest nephew.  he was 15 at the time, and it happened after his birthday in 2011.  No one, not even me knew what was going on.  You know, children, especially teens can have this problem too.  Since my parents are his legal guardians and my nephew went from doing things with his friends at church,  not returning calls from his father, stepmother, or his friends at school, to stop giving me advice on my computer (which he is brilliant at, as well as drawing).  His drawings started becoming dark, and he deleted his Facebook page.  Mike started sleeping a lot, and we were all getting worried about him.  Here it is a year later, and he is not his 100% self, but he is back to functioning.  He visits his father and stepmother, plays with his little brother (who is crazy about him), he is back to drawing happy pictures, into skateboarding, has a facebook page (I am not his friend on there still trying to find it), telling me things about my computer again, and somewhat of a typical teen (again, he is not 100% himself).  he does still see a counselor, but he is currently not taking any medication.  The counselor is there to help Mike sort things out in his life.   he was behind in his schoolwork at the time of his diagnosis and now thanks to going to a different school (one that allows him to go at his own pace), he will be graduating so far the year that he is supposed too, which is 2013.   Now, I am hoping this trend will continue with him, but he has had some setbacks along the way, and I am sure that he may continue to have some in his path, but that is when he can talk to his counselors about those setbacks, and they can combat them together.  I have no doubt that God had His hand in it too because we are a praying family. All of us, including our church family.
So there is light at the end of a dark tunnel, and you can get your life back, with or without medication.  The main thing here is never giving up and never give in to your depression.  Remember that it is ok to feel a little sad sometimes, but it becomes a problem when it starts to consume your life, to the point where you stop your routine, and your basic living.  This is the time to get help, and getting help is a freeing thing.  Remember if you know someone that has depression, take it slow, do not judge, and they will get help when they are ready for help unless it is a child, and then there is some intervention you must do on your part.  Children and teens have stress and problems too.  This is the time for parents, grandparents, aunts, and uncles to act and act fast, but it is never too late.

Take care, and be blessed every day.
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