Thursday, October 4, 2012

Our hell on earth

We are masters of our own universe.

With that said, I blog about depression and how it eats up the human heart and soul.

Most of us feel sad, blue, unhappy, miserable, or down in the dumps one time or another. But as the saying goes - we need to snap out of it after a short while.

A major depressive disorder becomes a clinical condition when it lasts for months. It is a disabling condition classified by the American Psychiatric Association as a mental disorder that is manifested by low mood accompanied by low self-esteem, loss of interest or pleasure in what are normally enjoyable activities.

I have friends and loved ones who go through their personal hell on earth. When I see some of them having to fight with the devil from within, it tears my heart apart. My mom for example has had her good days and bad days before she was diagnosed with major depression disorder.

I remember when my father passed away, my mother was left in a void. Suddenly she had chest pains, abdominal pains, and other body aches which various doctors tried to address and which various medicines could not cure. Everyday would be anxiety-laden because when she would clasp her chest, I would rush her to the ER only for her to feel better when we got there or have the multiple laboratory tests come back normal.

That was when I decided that she should seek help. Help beyond what I can emotionally support her with. We both needed to move on with our lives.

The problem with depression is that it not only engulfs you but those who love and care for you. People who go into depression don't realize that their conditions are "infectious". Obviously, they wallow in their own world and become a prisoner of their own fears and anxieties. Depressed people are highly agitated, restless and irritable. Some become withdrawn and isolated. Others practice high risk behaviors - either sexually or through illicit drugs. There's a feeling of worthlessness, self-hate, guilt and trouble sleeping or sleeping too much.

People who suffer from depression must not only have the motivation to seek help. They must be able to wage a personal battle with the devil from within. Psychotherapy and counseling may help but the family and those close to them must bear extreme tolerance to their conditions. Something that's not easy to do because many of us have our own lives to live. We cannot be crippled by carrying other peoples lives all the time. Then there are medicines that address the depression but may end up with other metabolic problems for the patients.

There are many theories on why depression may be more prominent in some individuals while others who may have more stressors in life don't seem to be affected to a greater extent. Whatever they are, I would surmise that people who suffer from depression have their own stories of their hell on earth.

And while there are treatment options that can range from taking a pill to psychotherapy, the underlying goal here is to help people who suffer from depression to "snap out of it" and live full regular lives. No matter how you try to assure them that it's probably just a phase and that everything will fall into place eventually, there's the devil within that whispers to them that it's not going to be okay and that people tell them it will be alright so that you stop bothering them. And they go through another cycle of having to fight the negatives from within.

The internal struggle of having to live with depression leaves a lingering experience of despair each and every waking hour. It's their story of their hell on earth. And how their families and friends are affected by their intertwining stories of their lives.

Is there hope for them?

Yes. And it's a work in progress at fighting the evil from within. It's a concerted effort from those who support them physically, mentally and spiritually to help them move on with their lives and get to live life to the fullest.

We all have our stories to tell. Sharing them is the first step. The second, is realizing that you're not alone...

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