For those who don’t know I’ve been living and studying in Japan since March, and I’ll be here until December. I’ve made some great friends, and had some incredible experiences. My anxiety and depression levels have decreased significantly since being here, and as a result I have been able to successfully halve my antidepressant intake. I have passed all of my Japanese classes and completed an online course that gave me a TESOL qualification. I finally have some idea of who I am and what I want to do in life.
When battling mental illness it is just as important to take your prescribed medication as it is with any physical illness.
Every couple of months I have a period when I stop taking my medication – I either think I am well enough to function without it or I decide I want to be like a “normal”, healthy person. Sometimes I just forget, even though taking my medication is the first thing I do when I get up in the morning.
Author’s note: this post was originally written in March 2015 and has been sitting in my drafts since then. Apologies to those who enjoy timeliness to their stories.
It’s not everyday that you experience a perfect metaphor for your life, but when I was in Bali last month that very thing happened to me.
- Inspired by the article 11 Habits of People With Concealed Depression by Lexi Herrick
I’ve recently started seeing a psychologist referred by my doctor. I’d seen a psychiatrist back in 2012 upon a similar referral and it didn’t work out, so naturally I was skeptical.
I started Out of the Dark as a journalistic blog for one of my university projects in May 2014. When I was actively posting, the blog received 440 hits in June alone, which was more interest than I could possibly hope for. Since completion of the project I have been unmotivated to keep up with this blog, despite people expressing interest.
In 2015 I plan to revive this blog, and try to post frequently. There will be a shift away from the journalism side of things, and more towards personal experiences of myself and the people around me. Please bear with me while I try to work out what works best for me and the content of Out of the Dark.
Kristina Pierce* is the next brave woman to come forward and share her story of generalised anxiety disorder and major depression. Kristina was a silent sufferer for years before she was diagnosed, making her withdraw from society. After being diagnosed at age 16, she found an emotional support network made up of her friends, boyfriend and psychiatrist.
I will be the first to admit that the word “exercise” makes me cringe. However, research has shown that regular exercise can help ease depression and in some cases work better than anti-depressants.
Most people at some point in their lives will suffer from depression at varying levels of severity. Although depression can be crippling at times, there are things you can do to help prevent it before the offset, and things to help during the period.
It has been proven that exercise helps hugely with depression, however that doesn’t mean you have to go out and run a marathon every day! It can be hard to even get out of bed sometimes when you have depression so it’s okay to just do leisurely exercise a few times a week.
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This post by The Bipolar Bum looks at why people decide to take their own life as a side effect of depression.
Self-harm or suicide can be such an unfathomable concept to people who do not live with mental illness. Sometimes you can no longer control your thoughts and nothing seems to make sense.
I would strongly recommend reading this no matter how much, or little you know about depression and suicide. Awareness can save lives.
If you or someone you know is having suicidal thoughts, please seek help. A list of international suicide hotlines are provided at the end of this post.
It is the nature of the beast that when we become truly overwhelmed by depression, we begin to look for ways of stopping the pain. We become prepared to take decisive, extreme action.
The best way to think of depression is as though it is sentient, and actively trying to subvert your thought patterns to destroy you. Most things that feel counter-intuitive whilst depressed are usually better courses of action than the one’s that your depression will offer you. It does not want you to behave in a way that will destroy it.
At first, the idea of self-destruction presents itself as one solution among many. The thought for me is almost casual and I used to just ignore it. I now take it for the warning shot that it is. If you’re having suicidal thoughts, take that as your early-warning-system sounding an alarm. In the grip of depression all…
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After interviewing Susie Jones last week and listening to her story, I thought it would be appropriate to share mine. I have been living with depression and anxiety for about four years now, although I wasn’t diagnosed until after I finished high school. I didn’t seek medical help on my own; my mum helped me to reach out and get the support I needed.
Suzie Jones* was diagnosed with clinical depression in 2009 when she was 15. Since she was young Suzie has been attending counseling sessions and taking anti-depressants. Suzie tried to take her own life twice before telling her family about her depression. Many issues contributed to her depression, but with support from her friends and family she has battled her illness and has not taken anti-depressants for two years.