Inexplicable mood swings
One of the problems that people with depression deal with is random mood swings. One morning, you may wake up and feel like are going to deal with a challenging day but can deal with it. Other days you will wake up and feel like the apocalypse is beckoning you to come outside. It will be a struggle to deal with the most trivial matters, and no one will understand why you seem “out of it”. It will be days when you are loquacious and clear minded, and other days when you will be completely anti-social and introverted.
Triggers and cues
You are sitting down watching the nightly news, and hear the death announcement of a childhood TV personality you idolized. You recognize that the celebrity is close in age to your parents and you start to immerse your thoughts into mortality and death. The death of your parents starts haunting you, because you are in constant fear of them passing away. The TV news program was a trigger to ignite your anxiety disorder and place you into fear. Adults are extensions of our younger selves. So, the phobias we never get over become stuck inside our mind. It is the reason why that JaRule and Ashanti track that happened to come on your Pandora stream made you think of the high school sweetheart that broke your heart. Or the smell of that clearance bottle of J-Lo perfume at Burlington Coat Factory, takes you back to a bad date you had in 2006. A person with anxiety will become sensitized, to any fear causing trigger that most people wouldn’t recognize.
Overeating or Lack of appetite
Depression can drag your stomach size way down, or make your waistline explode. Most people don’t think of food as a drug. It is a running punchline for people who are overweight that they are eating their emotions, but it is true. Fat, salt, sugar are three of the most emotional sensations of pleasure to the human mind. Sugar is akin to cocaine, setting off the same receptors of dopamine in the brain. Food companies know it, so they add sugar and corn syrup to boost sales. A person may not have the money to buy a Lamborghini and a mansion. But he or she will most certainly have enough money to go through a drive-thru to get some fast food. The stresses of life can seem like they disappear when you are eating a pint of ice cream. On the other end of the spectrum, life can be so down and out that you find no enjoyment in anything. Eating is not something you feel that you have to do to live. If you eat something for the day, cool. If not, no problem. You can barely remember the last time you ate something, because life is just…whatever. When food is offered, you respectfully decline and move on with your day.
You want to reach out and get help. You want to talk to a professional or good friend to purge your emotions. The issue is that EVERYONE has problems. Your problems are no better than his or hers in the bystander’s mind. “Someone out there has it way worst than you and me, my friend!!” one acquaintance may surmise. “Why don’t you just snap out of it?” another friend may say. In their mind, you are a person who can overcome these thoughts with some Tony Robbins affirmations. If you are a man, you are supposed to be this log-chopping, car mechanic, motorcycle riding, stereotypical brute who can tough any issue out like a REAL man. What usually follows is some nostalgic story of the obnoxious friend or acquaintance’s father or grandfather, who were “REAL MEN”. They dealt with REAL issues like the depression and post-war. Not this pansy “new-age” Millenial bullshit. If you are a woman, the acquaintance may take the news like its a competition of “who has it worse?” She probably will commence to talk about her divorced friend who has 3 children and is successful now, and she had it way worse than you. You should be anything but depressed because you have NO REASON TO BE. So there you are, privately offended at the impudence of the friend or relative you decided to share it with. Stuck with the recommendation of a Tony Robbins, or Joel Osteen book, you sit there and wallow in self pity. “No one cares to hear about my problems”, you conclude.
The voice in your head
This voice is the worst son of a gun that you wish never existed. He has been with you ever since the bullies teased you in grade school. He was the asshole that prevented you from talking to girls and making friends. He talks very loud and disrespectful when you stand in front of a mirror, slandering your reason to exist, and pointing at every flaw not edible for American culture. He or she is the reason you will never start a business and be successful, because you are the worst example of a breathing creature. Most people can hear the voice and ignore it. Other folks hear it and use it to make improvements. The fourth group, is the most irritating of all, they imagine there is no such voice within them and they (allegedly) kick its ass every time it comes near. This is a voice you will most likely never get rid of and will have to accept for most of your life, until you can finally get the help you need.