I have a family member who lives with severe depression. It impacts every aspect of his life and those he shares it with. This family member has attempted suicide on many occasions and it has ripped apart his family in many ways as a result. Family gatherings are impacted because of his behaviour at times and it can be awkward to put it mildly. Loud arguments and fighting are the norm here, crying and pleading too.
During a family dinner it was said that this family member is "crazy". As someone who has experienced depression too, I took offense to this. The negative characterization of a depressed person as someone being "crazy" irked me greatly. I think it's this type of labeling and attitude that causes people with depression to suffer silently.
The response? now this kills me...get ready....
"okay so maybe crazy isn't the right word but it still means he's not all that right up there either"
Seriously? are you FRICKING kidding me???? It's this ignorant speak that really gets me. The general lack of understanding and compassion of society for people living with mental health issues astounds me. Sad to see it invades my family too.
For those who don't live with depression...understand this...it's not a choice...we're not happy feeling this way...we can't snap out of it...we don't need your negative labels and put downs - it hurts and it causes us to feel further...help us!...listen to us...without judgement...with love and understanding that we're trying. Our illness affects our minds...it affects how we see how ourselves and our lives. It pervades every ounce of our being some days. Depression hurts but hurts worse when those around us are so thoughtless in their words. Depression does not mean we're crazy and it does not mean we're weak! Depression is an illness!