I have been very sad to hear of a young girl’s suicide this week. Her mum was a friend of a new friend of mine. The girl was suffering from depression and was so sadly taken by this horrible disease. As a mum, I felt for the girl and for the parents, who had lost their only child at the prime of her life.

 

My friend and I talked about how young people and indeed those living with depression find it so hard to see past their problems, past the darkness. I have had my own experience with depression. It was a terrible experience. You feel despair deep in your gut. You don’t want anyone else to know how bad you feel because you don’t want to be THAT person; the downer. So you cover it up the best you can. Because that is what we do in our culture. Especially where I live. People don’t know what to do with sadness or despair until it slaps them in the face and they have to deal with it.

 

Thankfully, I had wonderful support from my family and friends who encouraged me to seek help which is what I did and things are much better. I don’t know how people live with this day in day out. It is something you would never wish on anyone. It is so sad to hear of people suffering so badly that they want out and they get out. It is so devastating for all involved who perhaps never knew how bad it was for the person or just could not help them any more.

 

I just think it is time for us to shun the ‘happy’ face. Even if your life looks rosy and you really have nothing major to complain about but you feel down, then let it be. It will pass. Things will look up. I remember just gritting my teeth and holding on the the tiny hope of a new day. My faith helped me hang on and see past the horrible moments that just kept repeating; feeling like ‘Groundhog day’, everyday.

 

The sad thing about the passing of this girl this week is that things would have passed. Life would not have been so sad for her forever. When you are young you live in the moment, for the thrill, for the feeling and if things don’t feel good then what do you do? Add on to that the disease of depression and it is a recipe for disaster which, unfortunately, is what this family has experienced.

 

I hope that as a society we can be ok with sadness and despair. That we can hold each other up when things get too much. That we don’t feel uncomfortable around people who are suffering and feeling blue. I hope we can let people feel what they feel, walk through it with them and help them see that there is a new day dawning.

(Don’t forget there is help out there. Just go to beyondblue.org.au )

Advertisements