Depression…What an ugly word. As a man it’s not even something we can readily share or admit. It’s almost taboo. I have to laugh because I had a few occasions where some of my close male friends and I have at one time or another, with tongue cheek confided that something was on us that we were having a hard time shaking something off. But, we never say the “D” word…. “LAUGHTER!”. We just could not say, hey, I’m feeling depressed. And sin of all sins, we are almost never allowed to say to our girlfriends or wives, I am feeling dot dot (can’t say the D-word).
As much as I’d like to say, “I was always able to Man-up!” so to speak, I just have to admit that I’ve had my days of struggling with “Da Blues”. Guess I have to turn in my man card now? Anyway, I write in part to say things that some want to say, but can’t or won’t. Depression is real. It’s even mentioned in the Bible.
I used to refuse to cry…period. I remember once in middle school, I broke my ankle playing football. As I lay there on the ground in agony, I started playing it off by laughing in an effort to keep my teammates from seeing me cry. I mean tears were squeezing out , but I just tried to make jokes and laugh while waiting for the ambulance. Later in life, I read that Jesus wept, boy was that a freeing moment!
Anyway, here’s some things about depression that I have researched and put together to at least let you know what’s going down, so you can get to getting back up if you ever need to! hope it helps.
While sadness touches all of our lives at different times, the illness of depression can have enormous depth and staying power. Even the ancient Greeks noted how disabling it could be, and that it was more than a passing bout of sadness or dejection, or feeling down in the dumps. If you have ever suffered from depression or been close to someone who has, you know that this illness cannot be lifted at will or wished or joked away. A man in the grip of depression canâ€™t solve his problems by showing a little more backbone. Nor can a woman who is depressed simply shake off the blues.
Being depressed has nothing to do with personal weakness. Scientist developing knowledge of brain chemistry and findings from brain imaging studies reveal that changes in nerve pathways and brain chemicals called neurotransmitters can affect your moods and thoughts. These neurological changes may bubble up as symptoms of depression â€” including derailed sleep, suppressed appetite, agitation, exhaustion, or apathy. In addition, genetic studies show that although no single gene prompts depression, a combination of genetic variations may heighten vulnerability to this disease.
Nerve pathways, chemistry, and genetics aren’t the whole story, though. Depression could be described as a lake fed by many streams. Its tributaries include traumatic or stressful life events, such as the death of a loved one, and psychological traits, such as a pessimistic outlook or a tendency toward isolation. An episode of depression may result from one particularly powerful experience or from a confluence of several factors. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, during a given year approximately 1 in 10 adults will suffer from some form of depression. Each episode usually affects a chain of people. It can fray bonds between you and your family and friends by spoiling intimacy, sapping emotional resources, and stealing the joy of shared pleasures.
Thankfully, years of research and breakthroughs have made this serious illness easier to treat. Early recognition of the signs of depression is more common than in the past. Newer treatments, such as drugs targeted at specific changes in brain chemistry, can cut short otherwise crippling episodes. A variety of drugs and therapies can also be combined to boost the likelihood of a full remission.
Just like a rash or heart disease, depression can take many forms.
Definitions of depression and the therapies designed to ease this disease’s grip continue to evolve. These shifts will continue to percolate through the field as more research flows in.
Hey fellow LifeTrain passengers, If you have ever suffered from depression (or think you have), know that you are not alone and it is nothing to be ashamed of. Seek help, and again know that you are not alone.
I mentioned earlier that depression was addressed in the Bible;
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Next station stop, Back In The Saddle Again!