Depression: personal blogs and stories

We all experience variations in mood – a general low frame of mind, or in response to specific things that happen. It’s also common to hear people say they are depressed if they feel sad or miserable. But depression is a serious mental health problem. It can interfere with everyday life – over long periods of time or in regular bursts.

As depression can be an ‘invisible’ illness, some people find it difficult to understand the effect it can have. They might see depression as trivial or dismiss it altogether. And this can make it harder for those experiencing it to speak openly and seek the help they need.

What is depression?

When you talk about being depressed, you often see people giving you this look, like they’re not quite sure what to do or say... But, don’t ignore them. Make eye contact, bring them crisps, give them a quick ring, listen to them. And tell them it’s going to be okay – until they are strong enough to say it to themselves.”
Christina writes about how depression can be a difficult thing to talk about >>

Depression is the most common mental health disorder in Britain, according to the Mental Health Foundation. It is a very real illness, and debilitating symptoms might include feelings of helplessness, crying, anxiety, low self-esteem, a lack of energy, sleeping difficulties, physical aches and pains, and a bleak view of the future.

Depression shows itself in many different ways, but it typically interferes with a person’s ability to function, feel pleasure or take an interest in things. Find out about symptoms, treatments and tips for managing it on the NHS, Rethink Mental Illness and Mind websites.

The stigma around depression

The hardest part of depression is finding a way to tell people. It is like you are hiding a terrible secret. I think I felt ashamed of myself for getting depression, like somehow I had failed. That’s what depression does to you: it makes you feel like a terrible failure."
Dave blogs about what depression feels like >>

Mental health problems are common, but nearly nine in ten people who experience them say they face stigma and discrimination as a result. This stigma and discrimination can be one of the hardest parts of the overall experience because it might mean lost friendships, isolation, exclusion from activities, difficulties in getting and keeping a job, not finding help and a slower recovery. Equally, stigma can cause us to shy away from the people around us who might need our support.

It doesn’t have to be this way.

How can I help?

The aim of the Time to Change campaign is to encourage us all to be more open about our mental health, and to start conversations with those who might need our support.

Why not find out how you could start a conversation about mental health?

You could share a blog story to raise awareness. You could sign up to receive Time to Change emails. And, you might want to add your name to our pledge wall, joining the thousands of people who are taking small steps to be more open about mental health.

Personal blogs about living with depression

The following blog posts are written by people with personal experience of depression. By talking openly, our bloggers hope to increase understanding around mental health, break stereotypes and take the taboo out of something that – like physical health – affects us all.


Why I will never stop loving and supporting my friend

My best friend and I had a running joke that we would moan about things - it started off little things but gradually I noticed the moans got more frequent and less jokey.Mu's blog At one point I read over our messages and noticed that she only said negative things. I was concerned and brought it up with her; she was not aware she was being so negative and insisted she was fine.

My journey with mental illness made me want to help others

This year, I was sat in a classroom learning about relapse prevention as part of my training to be a mental health nurse. When I was 18, five years ago, this isn’t where I thought I would be in 2015. Before I became unwell, I’d never thought much about mental illness. Five years later, I’m embarking on a career dedicated to supporting people who experience it.

Feeling proud, happy, and depressed - all at the same time

It is hard to be suicidal when you have a full time job, a four year old and a husband who adores you.

It is difficult to accept you are feeling suicidal when you have your son’s arms wrapped around you, work is going well and your husband is singing funny songs to make you both laugh.

It is a struggle to even accept you are wading through suicidal thoughts, while watching your four year old practice for a mother’s day assembly, where he will be singing 'Supermum' at top volume, while giving you the best jazz hands you have seen this side of 1999.

Living with a personality disorder, one day at a time

Last summer, my boyfriend dumped me. It was a serious relationship and we were about to get married. It wasn’t a healthy relationship. I used him as my crutch. I told myself ‘as long as I have him, I’ll be fine.’ I knew that there was a possibility he could leave and not necessarily by choice e.g. a tragic accident could befall him.  I knew that when he left, I wouldn’t be able to cope but I didn’t do anything about it. This proved to be a serious mistake.

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