Musings & Threads. Current Events. We Cannot Look the Other Way.
Current Events. We Cannot Look the Other Way.
Positive thoughts applied like band-aids and acupuncture needles sadly do not help.
I have this horribly helpless feeling. What is happening? My “ineptness” and lack of understanding of the true depths and demons associated with depression is so obvious to me. I read something last week that provided a perspective-- a person who has never suffered from depression cannot understand. It cannot be "pep-talked" away. It cannot be vanquished with positivity. It comes from within. And it is excruciating.
That is exactly what a non-experienced person does—I know that. “Look how lucky you are. You have a great family, your career is successful. You are so well-liked and respected.” Parenthetically, stop feeling sorry for yourself, stop making problems for yourself that don’t exist, stop seeing yourself the way you do—it’s not what is.
But what we are now seeing first hand is that a person who is in a deep depression CAN’T STOP. You cannot apply positive thoughts like band aids and acupuncture needles. To lose talented, wonderful people – to a disease we cannot see—is so unacceptable. Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain bring into the light, something that is hidden behind smiles, bright colors, bravado. We need to watch our friends and family closely—and when we have that nagging feeling when someone we love says, “I’m fine,” we cannot look the other way.
Some very sobering statistics from the CDC regarding suicide:
Since 1999 suicide rates in the U.S. have risen 28%.
Suicide is the 10th leading cause of death for people overall; for young people, the second leading cause.
Approximately 45,000 Americans died by suicide in 2016.
The Washington Post, in its editorial citing these statistics, stated that the heartbreaking deaths of Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain "should serve as a wake-up call," and that it is crucial for the U.S.--all of us--to treat suicide "like the public health crisis it is."
Please see Lynda Bernard’s beautiful and important piece, linked here, "Life Goes On,” regarding her experience with depression. Life does go on—except when it doesn’t.