Thanks for posting this, it was fairly interesting to read, and I'll try to apply some of it to my life.
It seems like my experience with depression was quite a bit less intense than most of the others posting here, honestly not surprising to me.
During the 6-ish months I was depressed I didn't even really realise it, just that 'something' was wrong in general and it wasn't until I got out of it, looked back and thought on my state of mind (and talked to some professionals) did I find out it actually was depression.
It kind of felt like I was wandering through a bog made of soup. Getting out of bed felt like dragging myself out of a mud pit, talking to people felt somehow plastic, I couldn't seem to clear my head to think about the future, and everything else just happened because of routine. I went to school and worked on my thesis because I didn't know not to, went to classes and listened to lectures because it was on the schedule, received my grades (steadily decreasing) because they were handed to me.
The worst parts were the little compulsions and thoughts that would just sort of sneak in to my head. "No one would blame you if you slipped and fell in front of that car." "If you fell down the stairs it would be an accident, not your fault." "Ending up in the hospital would make it better." That was always the weird part. The potential for death was always acknowledged in the back of my mind, but on the surface the idea was just that somehow being incapacitated would relieve what I was feeling.
The only thing that kept me from having any 'accidents' was the thought of how much it would hurt my family, I've been in the hospital before for injuries and even though none of them threatened my life or seriously disfigured me my parents were always worried. I guess I couldn't deal with the thought of passing my unhappiness on to someone else.
In the end I got out because I was able to affect changes to the situation that was apparently sucking the life out of me. I suppose that's my only real advice, assuming the readers depression is not out of their hands due to chemical imbalance. Just figure out what the problem is, and do anything you can to alter it, even if it means cutting away parts of your life that you identify with strongly. I know I'm very fortunate in how mild my case was, but the actions I had to take to affect the changes I mentioned were fairly serious, so allow me to add that you shouldn't be afraid to remove a splinter with a hatchet if that's all you have to do the job.
In my case it felt like that soup didn't thin out the least bit until the moment I was done purging every bit of my problem, but when I did it felt pretty amazing, kind of like digging that splinter I mentioned out. It hurts like hell all the way through until the instant it pulls free of your skin, and then there's just this glow of relief not just from the pain of the removal, but from the discomfort of it sitting underneath your skin for so long being relieved. Its not especially groundshattering, I know, but it was what ended up helping me.
People are quick to slap labels on stuff these days, but one thing they don't talk about is "the functionality test".
Of course not, far too many people are apparently determined to make their diagnosis a primary component of their identity and the functionality test would just get in the way.
It's the main reason I avoid mental health support groups. I might have several mental health issues but the way so many of the people in the support groups seem to wallow in it is creepy as fuck. Plus I have no interest in doing the validation circle-jerk.
I am just getting offended by you now. You think I have no clue what it's like when I do, then you tell me my family isn't depressed. I'm the one stuck on cleanup duty when my brother slits his wrist smearing on the walls or tries to overdose and just ends up throwing up everywhere and pissing himself. I have my mother threaten to murder me and my brother because she feels her life is so terrible no one can be happy around her and you say I don't understand and they they're not depressed. I don't even want to continue this with you.
I apologise. At no point did I mean to imply your family members weren't depressed, and I'm really, honestly, sorry if I did. I don't know them, and therefore can't make any statements about them one way or another, and clearly I didn't take enough care in my post to make that clear. So again, I'm sorry.
In regards to saying you don't understand: I've had this sort of conversation about where the suicide instinct comes from a lot, and in all of them it's been with someone who's been making claims with no experience of depression at all. After a while, you just sort of fall into a specific pattern of response on the topic, even when that's not actually the case. Being stuck cleaning-up the fallout of other someone else's depression is not a fun place to be at all, and I'm sorry if I trivialised that in any way (again, really not my intent).
I hope things improve for you and your family in any event. Once again, I'm sorry for any offence caused.
I've always been a depressed and very angry person. Ever since a child I've been that way. I've been through a lot in life and I've suffered because of it. Suicidal ideation was commonplace and I often thought little of myself.
But lately I've been trying to change my life for the better, be a better person. I've really looked inside of myself and I've just let go. The things that have bothered me no longer define me as a person, I've accepted the past and I've just let go of it. I'm trying to be free.
I don't really think I've got depression, but I know something's wrong. Anyone care to help explain what "it" could be?
Basically, I'm a 14 year old kid currently doing my GCSEs. My school life is fine, I have a few friends and I'm not being bullied (except for a few girls, but they're just cunts anyway) but there's something big missing in my social life. I can't remember the last time someone asked me if I wanted to go out with them, it's always me who has to plan stuff. It's very rare that I get a phone call or a text from a friend out of school. Pretty much all my non-school time is spent trying to play video games, trying to focus on a hobby (which I never ever get any good at) or browsing the internet instead of going out or having any sort of social life. I always just end up on the internet, browing forums or watching crappy Youtube videos. I can't even remember the last film I willingly sat down and watched because I don't even have the will to do that.
There's that, and I've also got a massive fear of my future. I'm constantly having thoughts of being a financially bankrupt, un-employed loser when I grow up. I'm constantly worried about what world I will step into when I leave University, and how hard it will be for me to succeed in any way shape or form. But what worries me the most, is that quite often I have dreams or day-dreams of something extremely terrible happening to me or my family, and they're almost always extremely realistic. I've been walking to the local shop, and I just start having vivid thoughts of nuclear bombs being dropped at that exact moment. When I'm sleeping I sometimes have realistic (no weird dream stuff) dreams about burglars coming in and killing me or my mum, or a terrible fire killing my whole family. When I'm in school I sometimes start thinking about a mass-shooting taking place. I don't know why these happen, they only started about mid-2012. What I do know is that they are almost always really, really fucked up.
But after all that, I don't really feel depressed at all. I haven't ever considered suicide, or self-harm or anything else commonly associated with depression. I don't ever really have any break downs, or other things. . But there's those two things that seem to always be there, and I don't know what it means for me.