Posts Tagged ‘denial’

When I saw on Twitter that Hyperbole and a Half was back and talking about depression, I had to go look.  For one thing, I’ve always loved Hyperbole and a Half.  So funny I often laugh until I cry.  For another, I know far too many people who suffer from depresssion.  Creative people, writers, have always been particularly susceptible, maybe because they have to observe, experience and analyze the world so acutely, reliving emotions that are often easier to shy away from in order to write about them in a realistic manner.  Or, maybe it’s just chemistry.  For decades I’ve hidden from the outside world that depression is something I struggle with as well, because as an agent, I don’t want to show any sort of weakness or have anyone perceive that I could be anything less than 110% at all times.  Here’s the thing: I’ve been dealing with it since I was a pre-teen.  I’d like to say “I’ve got this,” and 99 ½% of the time it’s true, especially since I don’t balk now about getting help when I need it.

So why am I saying anything now?  This post by Hyperbole and a Half affected me deeply.  I think that anyone who struggles should read it to know that they’re not alone and that they’re not deficient in any way because they go through it.  It happens.  That’s it.  A good friend (hi, Laura Anne), once said to me, “If you had diabetes, you’d take your insulin, wouldn’t you?  If it was chocolate instead of medication, you wouldn’t have a problem.”  She’s right.  Absolutely.  Depression is difficult enough, and with it comes the apathy, the extreme difficulty picking up the phone or sending an e-mail letting people know what’s going on.  Whether there’s truly still an external stigma or whether it’s all in our heads, it’s a wrecking thing.  So, I’m writing to tell you, particularly in this industry, you’re not in the minority.  It’s something so many of us suffer from that we all understand.  You don’t have to shout it from the rooftops (or the pages of your blog, like I am here), but you don’t need to place the extra burden on yourself of having to hide it.  There is no “Fake it until you make it” when it comes to depression.  There’s only denial and help.