1. It often presents differently than you would expect Depression means different things to different people; many symptoms aren’t commonly recognized as depression. Depression is not always laying in bed crying. Sometimes it’s an inner sadness that doesn’t go away.
And honestly, depression doesn’t always go away for some people. There’s a small number of people who will always struggle with it during their lifetime in spite of therapy, medication, good self care and a seemingly “great life”. This doesn’t mean you are weak, lazy or unmotivated, this is an illness.
2. Depression often makes people emotionally distant and self-critical Depression can be feeling quiet or having emotional difficulty in relationships. You may care a lot about others, but you let very few people into your inner world. It can bring feelings of worthlessness and sometimes even thoughts of suicide. Depression also impacts how people see themselves, see others and the world around them. It can cause distorted thinking patterns.
3. Depression can make people more likely to self harm This can be surprising for some, but self harm is a fairly common way for people to cope with their feelings. It can actually be a life saving behavior if it’s used instead of suicide. It doesn’t mean you are crazy, it means you may be depressed and struggling to cope. As therapists, we help people change the way you manage emotions and figure out a way to take care of yourself while you are moving through depression.
4. The recovery process is very up and down But remember, there are ways to comfort yourself during the process. You can't think your way out of depression, you must do things daily to make it better.
It can be hard to accept and express these painful emotions. Talking this out with someone can really help reduce your suffering. Therapists can help you work though these thoughts and feelings and develop some new ways to cope.