Everyone my age has experienced sadness, everyone in the
world has experienced sadness, but when, at what point does that become
depression? I never know where the line
is, if there even is one. I’d hope for
most people that’s a question they never have to ask, but I think that in our
present climate that would be a naïve impression to have. You might think me pessimistic, in fact I
hope you do, because that probably means you’ve never suffered depression, but
for me, I think most people have at some point in their lifetime.
I was told once by a teacher at my secondary school, that everyone would experience depression at least once in their lifetime. I remember being horrified that she could make such a claim in front of 15-year olds, little did I know I was on the brink of falling into that void myself.
There has to be a reason, that we are all so discontent with
lives that we should highly appreciate.
I happen to believe it is our relationship with the world around
us. Greed has the gotten the better of
us, society was born to judge us, change us, alienate the real us. When you feel like you can’t just be an
unfiltered version of yourself, when you need to put on a pretence for the
‘social’ world, you lose the real you, and when you lose that part of yourself
that makes up your identity, what do you become other than a blank slate for
society to write on? With this brings its own problems, because society has no
definition of perfection, it is riddled with contradictions and impossible standards
that no one can attain in their real lives.
So where does that leave you?
It left me unfulfilled, uncertain, lost, without purpose,
without passion. I only wanted others to
like me, but when you are in that position you aren’t living for yourselves but
for other people, often strangers that can have no care for your true
I tricked myself and everyone else into thinking that that
was okay when really, I was at the lowest point of my life, and no one saw the
signs, how could I have expected them to, when I didn’t even know myself well
enough to see it?
The point is though, I did come to a realisation, that I didn’t want to live for other people, I wanted to have my own agenda, I wanted to be someone unique, something new, something no one else could be. The simplest way of achieving that, was to become the person I always was under all the pretence, to become open about my feelings, about what I went through behind closed doors. I set myself free from what I saw as the constraints of society, all the stigma, I told myself not to care about it. That’s not an easy thing for anyone, and I have in no way achieved that completely, but although I still have bad days, and depressive ‘episodes’ I no longer feel ashamed, or feel I have to hide it.