Depression can be one of the hardest and most misunderstood things to deal with. Despite many attempts which have been made to single out an explanation, one outdoes the other. Though generalizing symptoms of a severe condition such as depression is hard, we have penned down a few of these, which may help you point it out in yourself or others:
Trying hard to conceal it
Can you understand? Someone, somewhere, can you understand me a little, love me a little?
– Sylvia Plath
When we think of depression, what comes to our mind is a person sitting by himself, head facing down, locked in his room, often in a dimly-lit setting. Well, the first step towards understanding depression is doing away with this stereotype. A depressed person may look as cheerful, as outgoing and as happy as anyone. But that’s only starkly juxtaposed with what is going on inside their minds. So, if someone tells you that they are depressed while they wear the best of their smiles, don’t ask them if they are kidding.
Displaying irritation and anger too often
Depression is the most unpleasant thing I have ever experienced… Sad hurts, but it’s a healthy feeling. It is a necessary thing to feel. Depression is very different.
– J.K. Rowling
We often associate depression only with melancholic feelings, aloofness, indifference and helplessness. But it doesn’t define it right, especially with people who are in denial of their condition. Depressive thoughts may often find a way in lashing out at other people. It can also be due to self-loathing and emotions that remain repressed for long.
Non-committal about things they love
I desire the things that will destroy me in the end.
– Sylvia Plath
Turning down what they once loved could be due to many reasons, one of them being depression. Depressed people may tend to stop seeing the purpose in anything and can head towards nihilism. Besides, they may also want to avoid people conflicting them regarding their condition and so decide to avoid going at all.
Complaining about not getting enough sleep
I like to complain and do nothing to make things better.
– Kurt Cobain
Depressed people can either be getting a lot of sleep and still complaining about feeling drowsy and tired. Or they can be laying awake all night, crying, fighting with their own minds, looking for a way out of such negative thoughts. What is common for both these habits is a desire for escapism.
Eating a lot or not at all
I am afraid to be alone with my own mind.
– Sylvia Plath
Depression can have two manifestations: Overeating or eating too little. Overeating is often a result of deriving pleasure through eating as a depressed person may look for sources of things that make them happy. On the flip side, depression can make a person lose their appetite because it may appear unappealing to them.
But in the end, one needs to remember what Rowling said:
And I’d say, the world is full of wonderful things you haven’t seen yet. Don’t ever give up on the chance of seeing them.