"Am I depressed" quiz??
When you type this sentence in Google search engine, you get wide variety of tests, by different organisations( I have tried myself couple a times).
You try one or two and are amused or relieved by the results.
So I present to you yet another quiz, mark your response without peeping at the answer and have a check at the end, I am sure the results will leave you spellbound.
I call it "this/that" quiz.
Q: What do you think are the symptoms of depression? This/that?
1- Feeling sad and hopeless OR Quite an optimistic outlook.
2- Lose interest and aloof OR Active and highly functional.
3- Increased fatigue OR Insomnia.
4- Difficulty getting out of bed OR People's person and life of the party.
5- Weight gain OR Weight loss.
6- Trembling job scenario OR Highly stable and productive.
So how much did you score? Was this quiz quite a blow? Mind boggling?
I just made this quiz up to show the disparity in which we view depression. It's hard for us to believe that a cheerful, happy person might be going through something like depression.
There is a reason why depression is called the new age cancer. Just like a cancer condition, it's symptoms are confusing and often ignored at early stages.
It's a myth that there is always a traumatic event or reason for this condition to occur. Nope, you can still feel like an empty vessel when your life is overflowing with love, opportunities and success.
There is a colloquial term for this condition, "Smiling Depression".
It is not recognised by DSM( Diagnostic and statistical Manual of Mental disorders), but would likely be included as a major depressive disorder with atypical features.
It's a term for someone living with depression on the inside while appearing perfectly content and happy on the outside.
Modern times are more twisted than ever. People choose to suffer alone rather than face the "talk" with someone.
They put on a happy face , not just to pretend to the world, but to themselves too. They make up their mind that nobody would understand and might in fact judge them for being ungrateful and make them feel guilty.
What can be done then?
Let me be very honest. As someone who has gone through depression myself, I am eligible to say this- IT'S NOT EASY TO SPEAK UP. NOT EASY TO ASK FOR HELP.
I was just fortunate enough to have my family get me timely help and not everyone is fortunate enough.
All we could do is to lend our ears for people who are mumbling. Not give them advice, but to just listen.
Being present for them in ways that's possible for us. A call, message, mail is all it takes to stop a depressed person from falling further down the downward stoop.
Can't we all do that? It isn't too much to ask right?
In a world where you can be anything, be kind.
Do like, share this with your friends, family, colleagues and be transiently present for them.
All my love and prayers