Guest Author - Lisa Angelettie M.S.W.
There are many of you out there who have fought a long and hard battle with depression. You finally get the nerve to go out and seek professional help. Your therapist or physician recommends that you go on antidepressants for a while until you can get control back of your life.
You are completely overwhelmed--this depression has a Kung-Fu grip on your entire life! So you fill the prescription--you have to try something. But you feel really...something about it. Embarrassed? Ashamed? You don't want to hear people's judgments. You don't want your husband to think you are crazy, even though there is no way he hasn't realized that something is wrong.
So you don't talk about it. You take your medication during lunch at work. You say you are running errands when you go by your therapist's office. You read a chapter of your favorite self-help book and then put in your night stand drawer so no one sees it.
You might be allowing your battle with depression to define you in a very negative way. You equate therapy and medication with weakness. You feel like a failure and a loser. And you know what? That could be further from the truth.
You may have carried out your mission much like a James Bond sequel - but you still carried out your mission! You are not weak at all - but intelligent enough to know that depression is a mental disorder. One pretty much scientifically supported to be affected by chemical imbalances in the brain. How does that make you weak? No weaker than the woman who is having trouble conceiving or the other woman who was born with a heart murmur.
So really everyone - stop sneaking around your own house. Communicate with the people closest to you. You don't have to share every part of your life, but don't hide the fact that you have depression and are doing something about it with your mate or your mother or your best friend. Its the secrecy that will eat you alive and only compound your depression.
Lift the burden and get on with life!
Lisa Angelettie is an author, counselor, & coach on mental health, relationship, and other life issues for women. You can also visit her at www.GirlShrink.com for some Free Advice. Please visit us for more discussion on this topic in the depression forum to talk about it further. Don't forget to subscribe to our newsletter for topics in the news, new articles, website & book reviews, and other useful mental health resources. Subscribe below.