Thinking of depression paints a picture of hopelessness, sadness and emptiness, and you’re right – depression does feel that way. Most of us are familiar with the different forms of depression (atypical, chronic, manic, seasonal, psychotic and postpartum), but have you heard about high-functioning depression? This type of depression isn’t visible to the naked eye – as the name suggests, people suffering from it can interact with society just like any average Joe. It can be the gas attendant, or the person serving you coffee in the diner. High-functioning depression doesn’t manifest visibly, but it may be the most damaging one.
In general, high-functioning depression manifests through the same symptoms as other types of depression – it may cause trouble sleeping, appetite changes and even emotional problems. The symptoms may come one by one or occur all at the same time. They may not be visible on the surface, but they can affect a person negatively and ruin their mental and physical health.
Most people don’t acknowledge high-functioning depression due to the lack of symptoms, but they are there just under the surface. Here are 16 realities the sufferers wish you knew:
People find the symptoms difficult to understand
“I can work full-time, take care of myself and own a home,” Christine Dolan, one high-functioning depression sufferer says. “But, people don’t understand how hard it is. Any negative experience sticks, and I’m just not able to process things as quickly as others,” she continues.
Treatment can be life-changing
You may not like it, but treatment can help in cases of high-functioning depression. As a matter of fact, it can be life changing. So, before reaching for pills, we suggest scheduling an appointment with a psychiatrist.
The condition is isolating
High-functioning depression can be isolating, and these people just don’t know how to let others in. It’s not about you, it’s because of the disease.
It makes life a constant battle
Sufferers explain that high-functioning depression is like a constant battle between the heart and mind. It may look like you have it all on the surface, but a simple thing can cause an emotional breakdown.
It goes deeper than simple circumstances
“When people ask me why are you sad’ I don’t know how to answer,” Jayne SC says. “I’m married and have a great job, but there are things inside me broken, and I often have a hard time stopping the anxiety attacks. It’s not about the money or the job – the disease is wearing on me all day long!”
You’re not the problem
If you’re beating yourself up because of the problem, stop. It’s the disease taking center-stage, not you. “If only people would understand how hard it is for me – they might make me laugh, but once the flip switches, it will be really hard to stop the anxiety from kicking in,” Emily Thomas says.
Drains all your energy
Sometimes, it’s hard to turn the negative feelings off, and it can take a toll on your energy levels and health. “It will take all your effort to stop it, and sometimes, even that wouldn’t help,” Lindsey Diamond says.
It’s not anyone’s fault
What you must understand is that it’s no one’s fault. Don’t blame yourself or others for stuff – you can blame it on depression.
Distractions can help
If you’re suffering from high-functioning depression, there are simple distractions that can help. Being busy at all times does help, so get a hobby and focus on it in your free time.
It can get in the way of social interactions
“I just want people to stop pushing me going to parties when I’m down. The bad thoughts are not simple to get rid of,” Samra Suleman says.
The outside appearance doesn’t match what happens in your body
“I may look great on the outside, but I’m broken inside,” Jennifer Hazen says. “Sometimes, it takes all my energy to get up from bed or take the kids to school.”
Regular check-ins are appreciated
Even if it doesn’t feel like it, checking in with people suffering from high-functioning depression can mean a great deal. They appreciate the thought, even if they don’t write back immediately.
Feeling better isn’t simple
People think you’re lazy when you don’t want to go out or get up from bed, but in reality, these people find it extremely hard. Saying “Lighten up” doesn’t help as well.
Even going to work can be challenging
Sometimes, these people have a lot of problems holding themselves together, so even going to work may become a big problem.
The little gestures speak volumes
According to Caitriona Foley, pressuring these people to travel when they’re in a bad mood won’t take the pressure off – instead, it might have the opposite effect.
It doesn’t have to be seen to be real
Finally, high-functioning depression doesn’t have to manifest through symptoms in public just so you can believe it. These people may act like everyone else, and still experience a total breakdown when at home. Make no mistake – high-functioning depression does exist!
Article and image source: http://besthealthyguide.com