Just recently, depression received its classification as a mental illness. People are no longer in “bad moods”, or “moody”. When the name-calling and labeling stopped, depression got the respect as a disease. It got the respect as a disease needing a cure.
Depression sufferers are vulnerable to other debilitating behaviors. Victims fall into drug and alcohol addictions, unsafe, sex practices, gambling and lives of crime.
Over time, sufferers decline in their school or work performances. They stop trying to keep up their appearance. They stop “keeping up” their home. They disappear from social activities. People suffering from depression combat with their lack of self worth. Their symptoms are long and build up over time.
Depression sufferers are terrific actors. Some victims mask their feelings. They show off an exterior that appears put together. They showcase the facade of being in control of their lives. Unfortunately, they play their roles almost too well. Family and friends are unaware when they committ crimes, overdose or committ suicide.
Some months ago on “Dr. Phil”, Emme. an international model was on the show. She discussed her marriage to her supporter and career-minded husband of 20 years. During the interview, she revealed how her husband’s bout with depression almost destroyed them.
She confessed to finding her husband’s suicide note. It said that he would lock his car, close the garage door, and then start the engine. It was to be “death from carbon monoxide poisoning”.
She found the note, and then confronted him. After her interrogation, he broke down and wept. He confessed to wanting to die. He confessed to being depressed for the last five years. He said his depression had nothing to do with Emme’s international fame.
A decade ago, Emme became the first plus-size, supermodel. She broke through the superficial world of high-class modeling. She overcame the peer pressure to be skinny. She overcame the rampant, drug abuse and verbal attacks from other, slimmer models. She also overcame the built-in prejudices of photographers, fashion designers and fashion magazines. Despite her stardom, Emme’s marriage crashed under the weight of her husband’s illness.
She took a hiatus from modeling. She worked on rebuilding her marriage. She gave birth to the couple’s first child, and embraced motherhood. Her committment to family re-energized the marriage. The birth renewed her husband’s purpose. He was a husband AND a father.
The couple decided to tell their story. They wanted to warn families about the dangers of depression. Emme was unaware that her husband’s illness for years. She got aware, and took action! She chose her family over photo shoots in exotic places. She put her husband by her side; not in the shadows. Her decision saved his life.
Depression sufferers are able to hurt for days, weeks, months or years. They are crying for help. However, some cloud themselves behind smiley faces and friendly exteriors. And then, they are found one day too late. They are found either shooting up a campus or hung from a tree.