Have you lost interest in most activities, especially those you enjoy doing? Is your weight or appetite going down? Is your sleep disrupted by insomnia, hypersomnia, oversleeping, or failure to fall asleep again after waking up in the middle of the night?
Do you feel fatigued and tired all the time? Or even want to be withdrawn and locked up in your bedroom away from people? You may be suffering from depression.
Depression is a mood disorder that causes persistent feelings of sadness and a lack of interest in the things that you initially enjoyed like family, friends, work, hobbies, etc.
Depression is often stereotyped as a weakness which makes many people experiencing it fear to seek help for fear of being stigmatized or made fun of. This is actually more common with depressed men as compared to depressed women.
It is important to understand that depression is not a weakness but a disorder that anyone strong or weak can experience. Seeking help is therefore very important to help one accelerate healing and also become emotionally and mentally stable.
However, it is also very important to know who to talk to about depression. Many clueless and apathetic people would instead worsen the situation instead of helping if talked to about depression.
Before we find out who to talk to about depression, let us first know why you should talk to someone if you are feeling depressed.
Why you should talk to someone about depression?
You deserve to be heard. Being listened to helps you release your pain. It makes what is perceived as heavy become lighter and lighter. As you let out the words of your pain, the pain itself follows.
Someone worth talking to will give you the support you need. You may not be strong enough to support yourself emotionally. Talking to someone will help you get emotional support to get you back on your feet.
You will get hope and assurance that daylight will come. When we are depressed, we become hopeless thinking that we are in the worst situation in the world. If you talk to someone you will learn of people that went through worse situations and managed to overcome them. This will give you hope and faith in a better future.
Only through talking to someone will you be able to disapprove of your negative thoughts of worthlessness, not being loved by anyone, or wanting to kill yourself. People that love you may not be aware of your situation but if you speak up they will come running to stand with you.
Factors to consider when choosing someone to talk to.
Maturity. The main factor to consider before you talk to someone is their mental and emotional maturity. That person has to be able to listen without judging, able to keep a secret, willing to listen, and patient enough to let you express yourself.
Listening. Being listened to itself is sometimes all people need to feel better. When someone sits down and lets you speak your mind without interruption or breaking their attention is very therapeutic. A person worth talking to when depressed should be able to listen to you.
Altruistic. Being able to show concern unselfishly for the well-being of others is one thing you should look out for from the person you want to talk to. With altruism, one will be able to know what you are feeling and what you need to feel better.
Caring. Of course, you will not just go to anyone that seems altruistic, mature, or able to listen. That person has to have care for you as well. Yes, some random strangers can be kind enough to support another stranger but quite often they are rare to find.
Find someone that cares for you. When you are depressed you might think that no one does but try to talk to that friend or family unaware of your situation. They may be the right person.
Who to talk to when depressed.
1. Mental health professionals.
The best person to talk to when depressed is definitely a mental health expert. This person can be a psychiatrist, psychologist, licensed clinical social worker, counselor, or an advanced practiced registered nurse.
Doctors know how to approach depression and will give you the most appropriate treatment to match your condition. The treatment can be in form of medication or therapies like psychotherapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, and interpersonal therapy.
Mental health professionals are experts that know how to handle patients with depression and have all the qualities of the right person to talk to when depressed.
If you have family that loves and cares for you, you are denying them an opportunity to show you, love. Family is not just blood, it is also about committing to one another in good and bad times.
This commitment is often proven in bad times. If you talk to family, you will not only feel better and find healing but also give them a chance to show you how they are committed to loving you.
Just like family, true friendship thrives in both good and bad times. If you have that person you call a friend, give them a call and ask to talk to them.
They may not know or understand what is going on inside you yet will put everything on hold to be by your side if they get to know. Depression can make you think they don’t care yet they do in actual sense.
4. Cultural Religious leaders.
If you live in a theocentric society or a community centered on a strong culture, there must be people usually elders who are looked at as leaders and very respected. They influence behavior and help guide people in the ways of the community.
For their daily connection with people, they develop experience and empathy to deal with people’s challenges. If you know of one, he or she is the right person to talk to. Chances are high that he/she is mature, caring, altruistic, and able to listen.
5. Online support.
There are online websites that provide both paid and free therapy services to help people going through depression. You can search for one and find someone to talk to. Such sites have trained individuals professional enough to help you out of your situation.
There are also plenty of Facebook support groups with former victims of depression willing to help you. Search for one and ask to join. You will be able to access a kind stranger happy to give you a hand.
If you know one person that has ever been depressed and survived it. That is the right person to talk to. They know what depression means. They know what it feels like, how they got through it, and life after depression. Chances are high that this kind of person will not turn his back on you because they understand you and will be glad to stand with you.
Depression comes to eat away your joy, health, future, happiness, and relationships. It makes you feel physically and emotionally weak. The negative thoughts of self-hate, self-sabotage, and hopelessness convince you to believe that you can not survive. You start to think that your days will never change. I have been there. I hated the sunrise. The mornings were my worst. I wished I could stay asleep all the time because only sleep could save me from the inner emotional turmoil and pain I had to face while awake. It was hard but I made the call to my auntie who was not even so close but she matched the qualities of a person I could talk to. Am very grateful to her for the support she gave me that got me back on my feet. Do not listen to the thoughts of staying silent. Speak to someone. I wish you the best. In case you do not have anyone to talk to, you can reach me on my personal email. Kal.email@example.com. I am here for you.