When I decided to come out of the chemically-imbalanced closet and share my experiences with depression in a blog post yesterday, I could not have imagined the response it would receive.
Writing the piece was pure therapy for me – I am a rambler at heart, so condensing the chaos that is depression into a dinky passage was an achievement in itself. Clicking ‘submit’ brought another wave of relief, but I knew I would not feel I had truly made progress until I shared it with those around me.
Clicking ‘share’ brought more complicated feelings. As I clicked the button that put my innermost thoughts out there in HTML for everyone to see, I panicked that people would not understand. I worried that my friends and accquaintances would read it and feel differently about me. I worried that they would think me a martyr for complaining about why I get down sometimes when surely everyone feels that way from time to time. I worried that people would not understand, and I would feel stupid for putting myself out there.
Well, how wrong was I! Over the past day or so, over 577 people so far from all over the world have read my blog post and I have received many messages in response. I have been contacted by close friends and people I knew years ago and people I don’t know at all; people from different backgrounds and with different personalities; people who are quiet in nature and people who are the life and soul of the party, and all these people suffer with depression in some shape or form.
The most common factor in all these messages and notes was that people were not ready to ‘come out’ to friends and loved ones about their own experience with depression, but they knew exactly how I was feeling and they felt better reading about an experience they could relate to.
It made me sad and it made me angry that all these lovely, sparkly people have been suffering in silence when the party ends and night time comes. But it made me happy that even just a little blog post can give someone a little silver lining and make them feel that they’re not alone in their troubles.
To all the people who read, liked, shared, commented, messaged or just nodded along, thank you for proving that depression is something we need to talk about and something we can get through together. You have inspired and encouraged me to keep writing about my journey, the happy days and the unhappy ones, and to give a bit of a voice to those suffering with the shitty chemical imbalance that is depression.
If anyone at all, whether I know you or not, would like to talk, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with me – the textual door is always open and I am happy to help where I can.
I hope you find comfort in this journey, and I hope you find peace in your own. Let’s do this!