This world breaks my heart. I simultaneously think “No one understands” and “I know I am not alone”.
The statistics from the Anxiety and Depression Association of America reflect that more than 15 million American adults are affected by depression. There are various treatment options ranging from lifestyle changes through diet and exercise, to medical interventions and drugs, to experimental therapies – but let’s face it, doctors don’t know for certain how each individual will respond to treatment. A quick glance at the litany of potential side effects to standard antidepressants is disconcerting, especially for someone already grappling with the weight of depression.
I am not a medical professional so I can’t speak to the efficacy of the prescribed treatment options. I can only note that from my own experiences, our “advanced”, Westernized society is failing to adequately help people who find themselves in the grips of the dark void. I wonder how much of depression is a consequence of our disconnected lifestyles.
Much of my despair flows from a keen and painful awareness that life is not supposed to be this way. We are not supposed to be shackled in cages (offices, cars, apartments), coerced to buy food, shelter, and skinny jeans. We are not supposed to simply shake our heads as we hear about Boko Haram’s latest kidnappings while we wait in line at the grocery store. We are not supposed to avert our eyes when another human being stands opposite us. And yet we do. We cocoon ourselves in contrived and tenacious bubbles of safety. Technology. Fashion. Food. Anything that diverts our attention from reality. Anything that distracts us from realizing that we have shamefully distanced ourselves from the tribal culture and functional behaviors that kept us alive for so long**.
I wrote “Suicide Solution” as an attempt to explain that for someone with depression, suicide can seem like the only viable way out.
**recommended reading: Ishmael by Daniel Quinn