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In light of the great actor/comedian Robin Williams death, I want to share this article from Tonja Renée Stidhum. She so eloquently describes depression in way that is easy to understand. On social media I’ve run across people saying that since Robin Williams had everything, he should not have been depressed. That is a very insensitive and unkind remark. Depression is a disease that varies in severity and type. We simply cannot judge a person because we are not in their mind, heart or soul. We can only go by what we percieve (which can often be an illusion). Everybody smiling isn’t happy. Now with that said, there is something we can do. Reach out to people. Sometimes just talking can help you or others sort through some of the chaos in the mind. Consistent isolation isn’t good for anyone. We have to be giving of our time, effort and energy. Let’s make a conscious effort not to judge, but to help. And if you are hurting, don’t be afraid to say so and get the help you need.
Here are some highlights from Tonja’s article:
You know how someone can have a bright smile, but sad eyes? I always felt that way about Robin. And according to his publicist, Robin had been suffering from a severe case of depression. I believe his depression had been reported prior to that, as well. That part hit me the hardest. Because I can relate. From social media to reality, people know me as the “funny one.” Yet, like many comedians, there’s something dark lurking beneath. There’s a reason why comedians are oft-colored with the image of the showman onstage and the depressed alcoholic off.
For me, depression is quite the bitch, equipped with my very own sultry voice. She tells me I’m unworthy, unwanted, weird, an outcast, untalented, abnormal, forever alone, unloved, unattractive, a burden to others, and that everyone would be better without me. Some days, I believe the hell out of her. Other days, I don’t. Other days, I (rationally) know she’s full of shit, but I let her voice prevail. I think that’s the most frustrating part of it all. The rollercoaster. One day I’m legit super-confident and ready to take over the world and the next day I’m crawling into bed wanting to forever sleep away the hollow ache of my empty heart…
Some facts about depression:
The number for the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is 1-800-273-TALK (8255).
You are loved. You matter. Stay Lifted.