(Young Voices Speak is eaglenews.ph’s blank space for the youth to share their opinions, views, and perspective on any topic, issue, or matter)
By Mendy Amarondon
Young Voices contributor
Losing someone, getting fired from a job, failing an exam and other challenging situations lead a person to feel sad, alone or frustrated. However, these feelings are felt short-term. When a person feels persistent loneliness or overwhelming frustration for a long period of time, it may be called something else— a Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) also known as depression.
Depression is a common mental illness that sees someone experience depressed moods, loss of interest, low self-esteem, disturbed sleep and poor concentration. This condition is becoming a huge problem and is rapidly growing for the past years. The escalation in the problem, as well as the facts relating to recurring issues of depression, show that while the first line treatment of depression by antidepressants may sometimes control the symptoms, it usually does little to give sufferers depression-free lives.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO), more than 300 million people of all ages worldwide suffer from depression. Close to 800,000 people die due to suicide every year, making it the second leading cause of death for 15-29 year-olds.
Not a joke
At first glance, depression may seem plain and simple. But those who suffer from it understand how complicated it can be. Depression is not a joke and is definitely not a weakness. It’s a serious mental illness that can happen to anyone at any point of their lives. It’s never ‘normal’. It’s a disease that affects an individual in ways which prevent them from sharing their thoughts, feelings or experiences with others. Most of the times, they would prefer to hold it in and argue with themselves until they break down and would lose all the confidence they have within themselves.
Living with depression is difficult for those who suffer from it. It’s like a scar that never goes away no matter how much you want it gone. You just get sick of trying so hard to deal with it to the point that you won’t even care anymore. You’re just numb.
It may be hard to believe that the person you know and love would ever consider something as drastic as suicide, but a depressed person may not see any other way out. Depression clouds judgment and distorts thinking, causing a normally rational person to believe that death is the only way to end the pain he or she is feeling.
YOU are not alone
Unfortunately, no studies have yet proven the exact cause of depression. However factors such as peer pressure, trauma, and other environmental stressors may increase the risk of developing this condition. But apart from medications and therapies, there are ways to cope with depression—one of this is knowing that YOU are not alone. There are people around the world who suffer from this condition which means you can form a bond with others who can relate to it.
Depression is experienced by nearly everyone, to some degree, in their lifetime. Whether these issues are direct or indirect occurrences of one’s life, they can become a salient part of our day to day living. For someone from the outside looking in at a loved one suffering, it is important to know what you could do to help and to understand that they’re not alone in this journey. Depression doesn’t have to take control of anyone’s life.
Mendy Amarondon is a 4th Year AB Mass Communications student from New Era University. She has directed musical plays, served in the student council, and had been a lead actress in an original musical play. During her spare time, she reads mystery novels and science fiction.
(edited by Jay Paul Carlos, additional research by Vince Alvin Villarin)