This opinion piece in The Guardian more eloquently summarizes the message that I hope comes from the tragedy of Robin Williams’ death. Clinical depression is not about being sad. It’s not something that you can shake yourself out of through sheer force of will. It’s a serious and sometimes life threatening medical condition that continues to be misunderstood and misrepresented. It’s also very often difficult for someone who is depressed to get help, because the depression puts up walls between that person and the rest of the world. A simple phone call to a doctor can seem like an insurmountable task.
- If you think someone you love might be battling depression, learn how you can help.
- If you are feeling hopeless and think you may need help with depression, please try to reach out to someone. If it’s hard to say the words out loud, write it down. Talk to a doctor. If you can, ask someone you love to go with you. Most importantly, please know that it doesn’t have to be this way. You don’t have to just live with the darkness. Learn more about getting help.
- And if you are having thoughts of harming or killing yourself, PLEASE REACH OUT. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline offers toll free phone numbers and web chat – whatever method you feel more comfortable with. It might not seem like it in that moment, but you don’t deserve to feel this way and it will get better.