depression-selfish

You’re not depressed. You’re selfish.

“Why do you stay in prison when the door is wide open?”
— Jalal ad-Din Rumi, Persian poet and mystic

Depression is not real. It is something that exists in people’s minds. It can not be seen or touched or identified by sight or spirit in the real word. It’s all in people’s heads. Psychiatrists, in stereotypical attempts to make what they do look relevant, identify endless causes for depression, and for each cause there is an unnecessarily complex solution. My contention is that there is but one true cause, and it has to do with your centre.

I just feel sad. My career isn’t going well. My kids don’t talk to me. My dad was an alcoholic. I hate my job. I hate my life. I’m fat. I’m ugly. I don’t have many friends. People don’t like me …  are the sort of typical comments that we hear from the depressed. Nowhere in there is there a mention of other people. It’s all about you.

As humans we get in this state of sadness over very real psychological issues and we think about them endlessly, feeding them and making them worse than they ever needed to be. This creates emotions and chemical reactions in the body that doctors diagnose as ‘depression’.

Doctors see depression as a chemical imbalance in the brain that causes negative thoughts, but this is not actually the case. There are chemical imbalances, yes, but they are caused by negative thoughts, not the other way around. Doctors will prescribe you medication to correct the chemical imbalances, thinking it will therefore correct your thoughts. What you actually need is to correct your thoughts, and you will in turn correct your chemical imbalances. Think positive and you will feel positive.

Why in poor countries are reported rates of depression significantly less than in western countries? We have everything, they have nothing. You’d think that somebody who doesn’t have food for their family would feel pretty fucking depressed, yet no, it’s the western businessman with everything who feels depressed. The superficial reasons could be many, but ultimately it comes down to one thing: the poor man doesn’t have the time to sit there thinking about himself. The poor man spends his time trying to feed himself and/or his family. This gives his daily life meaning, and it removes that infamous word ‘I‘ from his thoughts.

If you’re depressed my advice to you is to stop thinking about what you want, what you don’t have or what others have. Focus on something greater than yourself, be happy for what you have and what you are and cherish it. Remove the word ‘I’ from your vocabulary and you will find a happiness that you haven’t felt since you were a child.

Cherish the smallest moments that life offers, like sitting under a tree on a beautiful day, the breeze against your skin, with not a thought in the world. Remember that by focussing on yourself and your ‘depression’ you’re making life harder on you and on those who love you. They have to deal with your self-inflicted bullshit the same way you do. It’s not fair on you and it’s not fair on them, and at the end of it all, when you do snap yourself out of it and ‘suddenly’ feel better, the truth will come to light. And that truth?

Your depression was all in your head. It wasn’t real. You were never actually depressed. You were just being selfish. And if you refuse to admit that you were simply being selfish, then you still are.

 

 

Due to the response this article has received I have written a follow-up. You can read it here. I also recommend reading the comments below.

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1,538 Comments

  • Reply Venkat March 9, 2013 at 3:09 AM

    Good read. WOW I like your writing style.

    • Reply Toma March 9, 2013 at 7:50 AM

      Thanks, Venkat. I appreciate your feedback.

      • Reply charity.fuzessy July 11, 2013 at 12:36 AM

        I agree
        depression is selfish . There are things in life that lead to feeling apathy and self loathing and wanting to quit though too some people feel heartbbroken discourAged used tired of caring alot and not being loved in return some people are frustrated and defranchised also the selfish uncaring actions of people can lead a joyful person to feel depressed because quite possibly the depressed person is angry over unrequitted love from the selfishguy she fell in love with. It hurts to give your heart to someone that doesn’t care anything about it, depresssion is complicated. You cant get lost in it because inessence. Its not worth grieving to the point of tragedy when you have to. Be strong those that do need you. Im just gonna find my joy in othet things oter then that mean msn that. Nrike my heart

        • Reply charity.fuzessy July 11, 2013 at 12:49 AM

          Its selfish to want to fall in love with a selfish person because it will effect every asect of your liffe and make you miserablee and then those around you wil always see.you sad and that’s not fair to themm

          • lilian506 November 17, 2013 at 12:32 PM

            how the hell is it selfish to fall in love with someone regardless of whether they are selfish or not? falling in love is a totally different kettle of fish and last time I checked something you can’t really control.

          • Nor March 19, 2014 at 1:22 AM

            I totally agree with lilian506.
            Depression in some aspects can come of as selfish but it isn’t all that, don’t replace depression with JUST selfishness.
            Although I do agree that a vast majority of us just have self inflicted depression.

          • maria March 20, 2014 at 1:11 PM

            why everyone think that depression is caused by love? it can be caused by abuse, lost of loved one, or family member, who do you think you are to even say that depression is selfish?

          • Natalie March 21, 2014 at 2:18 AM

            Who? I’ll tell you who – a human being with a point of view, even if it’s different from you.

          • Beth Mastrodonato June 14, 2014 at 10:44 AM

            you are quite the staunch supporter–or an alter ego

          • Natalie February 15, 2015 at 3:05 AM

            Real interesting tactic – suggest I am Toma simply because I point out it’s OK to disagree. I simply find Toma’s writing unique. I don’t find much food for thought on the internet these days about depression/

          • divya April 3, 2014 at 9:47 AM

            ti agree with u ! and making such a statement is completely absurd when the one is actually oblivious of the fact that what really causes depression! it’s not just love! they need to open up there minds and actually have at least have the required information!

          • Pete April 4, 2014 at 4:27 PM

            Depression is a sense of helplessness, a feeling of or experiencing futility of life.

            It is not, “I haven’t got this trinket,” or “my mug can scare a scarecrow.”

            You can’t really write about it if you haven’t felt it. Reading “Crime and Punishment” might help.

          • Liberty July 12, 2014 at 9:04 PM

            I agree completely @Pete. My motto in life is “to understaqnd, you must experience.”

          • Natalie February 15, 2015 at 3:09 AM

            If you look at it as helplessness, it shares a lot in common with self-pity. In other words, seeing circumstances as not a result of one’s own choices and projecting blame outward. Self-pity is a large indicator of clinical narcissism and related disorders. I don’t think I need to explain that much more.

          • sbeam July 19, 2014 at 5:51 AM

            I agree that depression isn’t selfish. It is a disease like cancer, diabetes, etc. It’s real and not in our heads. It causes real emotional pain. You aren’t an expert from what I’ve read.

          • Natalie July 19, 2014 at 7:55 AM

            Whether he’s an expert or not doesn’t justify the sweeping statements you made. That’s only what you believe it to be. To me, it is all in my head. I practice understanding and working with my emotions. It sucks sometimes but when I near giving to and feeling sorry for myself I can often lift myself. The mind can’t be treated as any other organ. My negative and dark thoughts/emotions cannot be compared to cancer.

          • Chandler July 22, 2014 at 11:43 PM

            okay let’s get one thing straight; feeling sad isn’t depression. clinical depression IS a chemical imbalance which causes you to feel sad, anxious, etc. so while you may feel sad, that does not necessarily mean you are depressed.

          • Natalie February 15, 2015 at 3:14 AM

            Chandler, you know best, and obviously you know me so I can’t argue with you.

            Since I try and work through it myself, I’m clearly not really depressed. Really though, there are those who are depressed and those who are immune to reason/reality.

          • Cobi50 June 24, 2014 at 12:22 PM

            There are real reasons to be depressed, i.e., a loved one dies. Then there are the myriad bullcrap reasons that most of us become depressed over. IF we would all just drink and dance with one hand free….ahhh we would be much happier as a culture.

        • Reply Emma September 8, 2013 at 6:31 AM

          Depression is an illness. Just because you can’t see it doesn’t mean it is not real. Your article seems to be on people who say they are depressed when they are just feeling sad about something. There is a big difference. I am depressed because I am. No cause, I am just ill and I have to deal with it.
          Stop being so stupidly simple about a massively complicated subject that you obviously do not understand in any detail.

          • Wendy Adelissa Mason October 18, 2013 at 12:42 PM

            I totally agree Emma. Studies have been done that people with depression have a smaller area in the brain that deals with adaptation. One day I just started crying. There was no reason. My life was going good. Then all the physiological changes happened. Sleeping 14 hours a day because I had no energy. My whole world was in slow motion. And what people don’t realize is by calling us selfish you press those guilt buttons already so sensitive in a depressed person. I agree you should fight it and not give into it, if it is in your ability. For me I needed help and am now on an antidepressant which has helped me a lot. People who haven’t experienced something firsthand should be very careful not to judge.

          • will December 4, 2013 at 11:22 AM

            Those grey areas are smaller because of the way you think. Your brain is like a muscle, it shrinks if you don’t use it right dummy.

            Just be grateful for the little things in life because where we’re all heading in’t not getting any better than this.

          • Bill December 24, 2013 at 5:44 AM

            That’s absolute tripe, Will. Your brain is not a muscle, it’s an organ, and your brain is where your thoughts come from in the first place. They don’t magically transport there from some mystical aether. Your thoughts ARE controlled by your brain, hence why depression exists and why it is a DISEASE, not a choice. You should be ashamed for trying to offer people advice from such a position of ignorance and, yes, stupidity.

          • Juan Laguerta December 24, 2013 at 7:50 AM

            I’m reeeaaaally getting sick of people with depression not taking responsibility for their own goddamn bulshit. IF YOU WANNA ACT ON EVERY FUCKING IMPULSE AND BELIEVE SOMETHING OTHER THAN YOUR OWN GODDAMN SELF DICTATES YOUR THOUGHTS AND ACTIONS THEN GO LIVE IN A FUCKING JUNGLE. IF YOU WANNA LIVE BACK HERE WITH THE REST OF US HUMANS YOU MIGHT WANNA ADAPT SOME OF OUR BASIC FUCKING PRINCIPLES SUCH AS FREE FUCKING WILL. PEOPLE BEAT FUCKING CANCER. THEY PHYSICALLY TOLD THEIR BODIES TO NOT BE SICK AND THEIR BODIES COMPLIED BECAUSE OF THEIR WILL POWER AND YOU’RE SITTING HERE WHINING ABOUT A PASSING NEGATIVE THOUGHT THAT YOU’RE TOO MUCH OF AN ASSHOLE TO LET GO OF. IF HUMAN LIFE MEANS NOTHING TO YOU AND YOU’RE TOO LAZY TO NOT THINK LIKE A RETARD THEN FINE GO JUMP OFF YOUR EXPENSIVE FUCKING BALCONY BUT KNOW THAT IT WAS NOBODY’S FAULT BUT YOUR GODDAMN SELF, NOT THE WAY YOU WERE MADE, NOT BECAUSE OF THE THINGS THAT HAPPENED TO YOU, NOT BECAUSE OF A DISEASE. YOU DECIDED TO JUMP OFF BECAUSE YOU’RE A PRICK. IT WAS YOUR CHOICE. IT’S NOT FUCKING TRAGIC OR ROMANTIC OR DRAMATIC IT’S FUCKING PATHETIC AND DEMENTED.

          • Jack January 1, 2014 at 12:37 PM

            You’re an idiot. If free will and fucking sunshine cured cancer, no one would die from it, ever. I don’t care if you’re a troll or not, I came to this blog already pissed, so I’m replying anyway.

          • Bokuno sururu January 1, 2014 at 1:06 PM

            It doesn’t cure cancer but there are documented cases of people beating cancer with their will power. Stress can destroy you physically and stress is purely psychological. Your brain has a prolific effect on your physical body and you cannot deny that. And you can’t expect to think like a fucking dumbass for a lifetime and walk away with a perfectly healthy brain. Depression is psychosomatic. It’s self inflicted. I GET IT. THERE IS A FUCKING CHEMICAL IMBALANCE. IT’S THERE. I SEE IT. WHOOPTY FUCKING DOO. YOU MANAGED TO FUCK YOURSELF UP SO MUCH THAT IT SHOWED UP PHYSICALLY. THAT DOESN’T MAKE YOUR ILLNESS VALID OR LESS OF A PATHETIC JOKE BECAUSE IT’S YOUR DEMENTED MENTALITY THAT GOT YOU THERE AND IT’S YOUR MENTALITY THAT SHOULD GET YOU OUT.

            YES. THERE ARE RARE CASES WHERE THE BRAIN IS JUST BORN THAT WAY. AND YES THAT TYPE OF DEPRESSION IS A VALID ILLNESS. BUT YOU CAN GET OUT OF EVEN THAT KIND OF DEPRESSION THE SAME WAY OTHER MORONS WHO AREN’T BORN WITH IT DEVELOP DEPRESSION.

          • Ro January 3, 2014 at 1:33 PM

            This is so wrong. Holy shit are people really saying this shit. Depression isn’t just feeling sad, you know that right Bokuno and Juan?

          • Jon February 26, 2014 at 3:35 AM

            Why do you people feel compelled to switch to CAPSLOCK to yell your point at the person you’re clearly looking down on? Why even reply to people you look down on?

          • Juan Laguerta February 26, 2014 at 1:15 PM

            You don’t scream at people you look down on. You’re not angry at people you look down on. If you really looked down on somebody they wouldn’t matter enough for you to even give a shit and be mad.

          • Natalie March 15, 2014 at 7:30 AM

            You have your opinion, and so does the other side…but you’re probably too self-absorbed and victimized to see it. No need for name-calling.

          • Rachel May 3, 2014 at 7:03 AM

            So, this is why I usually don’t read these articles… They frustrate me, and there’s no point in explaining why because people refuse to listen. People have to understand that we’re getting very philosophical here, everyone is looking at something from their beliefs and experiences, it’s entirely opinion and preconceived notions. Everyone thinks they know everything, but they don’t (This is from both sides). As for depressed people being ‘selfish’, well, maybe I am selfish. I’m depressed, because I choose to think negative thoughts. I think negative thoughts because it’s easier to be negative than it is to be positive. I’m not romanticizing anything, I just choose to look at things negatively. Being happy takes effort and vulnerability. I am sick of sucking it up and ignoring emotional pain and forcing myself to be happy, when I know it isn’t real. Thinking positively doesn’t make problems any easier. Maybe I am being selfish. I’m keeping it to myself and being unfair to myself, but all I want to do is be realistic. If I’m having a tough time, and I can’t take it, being cheerful makes it harder. Expecting the worst makes it routine. So, I’m selfish. And I’m going to continue to be, because it’s the only way I know how to get by.

          • Natalie May 3, 2014 at 10:13 AM

            This I understand.

          • Ro January 3, 2014 at 1:38 PM

            What is wrong with you? Why are you writing in all caps? And how can you judge someone on something that you don’t understand at all, in fact you have no concept of it at all because you’ve never felt it. I sincerely hope you’re a troll.

            And by the way, medicine beats cancer. Not people “telling their bodies to not be sick,” dumbass.

          • Juan Laguerta January 3, 2014 at 3:48 PM

            Writing in caps is me venting because of people like you. We are all human. I can judge whoever the ***K I want because I feel that as a member of the same species I have that authority. Not to mention, I know people with depression. I am aware the medicine defeats cancer but I thought people had the sense to connect the dots without me spelling it out for them. DO I REALLY HAVE TO EXPLAIN. Go ask any doctor he will tell you that a patient’s mentality is a crucial factor in their recovery and in many cases it has been THE deciding factor. I THOUGHT YOU WOULD TO UNDERSTAND THAT WHAT I WAS SAYING WASN’T THAT PEOPLE WITH CANCER MAGICALLY CURE THEMSELVES BUT THAT WITH THE HELP OF THERAPY THEY BEAT CANCER WITH THEIR WILL POWER; HAD THEY NOT BEEN THE STRONG PERSON THAT THEY ARE, HAD THEY BEEN A LAZY, *********, ****** LIKE YOU, THEY WOULD NOT HAVE MADE IT. Studies have shown that your cells begin to decay the moment you utterly give in to death. I don’t have to understand depression, which btw I do, to know that beating it cannot possibly compare to beating cancer. Yet, people with depression whine twice as much. I’m saying the brain has such an effect on PHYSICAL inflictions, then it has an infinitely more powerful effect on mental afflictions(if you could even refer to it as an affliction seeing as it is mostly self-inflicted).

            Depression makes me angry because for it to happen you have to embrace it. You have to foster it. YOU have to allow it in. And that’s exactly what you do and then you come back wondering why you want to kill yourself. It’s so f**king strange that you always thought like a retard for a lifetime and suddenly you have this inexplicable urge to kill yourself. YOU KNOW IT’S WEIRD, I’VE BEEN THINKING LIKE A PESSIMISTIC RETARDED MAGGOT FOR 19 YEARS AND FOR SOME STRANGE REASON I SUDDENLY HAVE THE URGE TO KILL MYSELF. I CAN’T EXPLAIN IT. ALL I DID WAS TREAT MY BRAIN LIKE A PUNCHING BAG I DONT UNDERSTAND. Depression also makes me angry because you have to be real scum to take a human life regardless of whom it belongs to. THATS WHY IM TYPING IN CAPS

          • elvis January 16, 2014 at 8:24 PM

            knock on wood bokuno that you never have anything seriously wrong with you that exceeds modern medicine or a family member or would you be in a position to deliver the news that an individual perhaps a father/brother/son/husband has a terminal disease you are going to tell the family that it is all in a mental malfunction. Furthermore, you are not an authority nor even a neophyte to the subject which you speak why not leave the conjecture to the people that actually conduct research and orient meta-analytic analysis.

          • Bokuno sururu January 17, 2014 at 4:50 AM

            Do you see how you word it? The way you make it sound like it’s COMPLETELY out of your power and there is absolutely nothing you can do. Why is it that people with depression emphasis so much and cling on so dearly to the idea that it is out of their power to do anything? Why is it that someone with an ACTUALLY terminal illness will fight and do everything in their power to live while ignoring everyone that says it’s terminal while someone with depression automatically decides that it just is out of their power?
            I’m on just as much of an authority as you are. Maybe even more because I have actually examined the topic objectively from multiple points of view while you are bias.

          • annoyedatthispost February 12, 2014 at 9:28 AM

            Why are people hating on depression and depressed people if they haven’t felt it themselves? You can’t judge a fucking soul unless you’ve been in their shoes. Yes, maybe being depressed is a selfish choice to believe negative thoughts: but how do you know if you haven’t experienced it? All haters can fuck off, in my opinion.

          • Estaban Haroon February 12, 2014 at 2:46 PM

            Nearly everyone has faced depression in their lives. Some people just wallow in it more than others and that’s what the ‘illness’ is. And I say illness in the same way alcoholism is referred to as an illness. They say that to you in therapy and everyone pretends like it was out of their power but everyone knows it’s your own fucking fault for being an alcoholic. I understand now why you have to pretend like it’s not your own doing because the second you do you the illness is no longer there, it just becomes a shitty habit that you never got rid of and that makes all the ‘suffering’ you’ve been through invalid which it is. I don’t feel superior to people with depression I just feel like they’re dicks. Cos it’s not about fighting or power it’s about choices and values. Just because I don’t have depression doesn’t mean I’m better than you, it just means I’m less of an asshole than you in a certain aspect BECAUSE LET ME YOU I AM AN ASSHOLE IN MANY OTHER ASPECTS. I call people with depression idiots because they need to see how fucking demented they are. Im just trying to hold up a giant mirror in your demented fucking depressed ass face just to show you the shitty person you chose(and continue to chose) to become.

          • elli adkins February 14, 2014 at 5:11 AM

            Take a psychology course, look up placebo effect, open your mind.

          • Kity March 11, 2014 at 8:36 AM

            Hi Ro :D I know this is way after the date but welcome to the internet, where the stupidity in human is exposed. Internet debates always get way out of control and it almost impossible to have any kind of rational debate. Try and remember that people who comment very negatively on posts often have mental health problems and at the very least self-esteem issues. Just smile and know that in the real world, 90% of people are supporting you. :)

          • Natalie March 15, 2014 at 7:29 AM

            On the other hand, those who are depressed usually have no idea what they’re doing to those around them. Come on, everybody’s world is allowed to revolve around them. Depressed people don’t have a right to use the resources of others. Usually this happens when guilt is used.

          • Calum Bliss April 1, 2014 at 9:44 AM

            @Estaban. Everyone has experienced sadness. Depression is completely different.

          • divya April 3, 2014 at 9:50 AM

            way to go ro! (y)

          • peetookhete April 4, 2014 at 4:47 PM

            To Estaban Haroon.

            “I don’t feel superior to people with depression I just feel like they’re dicks.”

            Therefore you are either the same or inferior. So, you are either a dick or worse than a dick.

          • Hithier Texidor January 16, 2014 at 6:26 PM

            Explain to me how a person who was raised like shit their whole entire lives can simply learn how to think positive thoughts? You’re just an ignorant piece of fucking garbage that deserves no type of recognition whatsoever. Saying somebody can not be depressed because some shy has it worse is like saying you can’t be happy because somebody is happier. How about the people who are bullied then? The people who were raped? The people who seen their friends or family get killed? Or they pathetic for being depressed? Are they? You guys disgusts me. Oh god. You can’t be human. I honestly feel like throwing up. It’s hard to believe that people like you exist. How can you attack depressed people with such pathetic reasons? Close-minded ignoramus fools are what all of you who agree with this sorry excuse for a human. His premises were because of miniscal reasons. Also, he doesn’t seem to understand that everyone has their mind and emotions programmed differently. Fuck you!

          • Juan Laguerta January 17, 2014 at 4:40 AM

            A person raised like shit their whole entire lives can learn to think positive thoughts the same way a person raised in a wonderful, nourishing, environment can learn to kill and rape or even be depressed. The minute you give in to your surroundings YOU become less than human. Being human is being conscious and making choices that YOU alone are responsible for. No one and nothing can MAKE you do or think anything, you can only be influenced. I mentioned people having it 10 times worse to put life in perspective because people with depression tend to have a narrow view of the world and MAYBE, if they begin to see that their date cancelling on them is not QUITE as bad as living in the streets or the desert, they can begin to see how much they blow their tiny problems out of fucking proportion. I know people who have had it FAR worse than just a ‘verbally abusive parent’ or a less than successful ‘love life’ that grew up to be something better than you or I. You are fucking human and you can make whatever you want of yourself and if you CHOOSE to immerse yourself in your own broken way of thinking that you don’t care to let go of then that’s YOUR call. I’m not close-minded, YOU ARE. I’ve seen it from your point of view a hundred times but YOU didn’t for one second try to truly see things the way they are.
            I didn’t say fucking everyone with cancer is magically cured because they’re strong willed. I’m saying that in some cases the KEY FACTOR to the patient’s recovery was their sheer will to live. Not fucking everything is black and white and that’s another example of your narrow-mindedness. Instead of seeing that as an example of just how much power human will can have you decided to criticize the fact that most people don’t recover from cancer that way. You completely denied it without giving it second thought or trying to see what I was trying to say and I think that makes you more narrow-minded that I am. We all have our own brains and each one is different and special but all of them have the potential to be everything we want them to be and more. I will not stand here and let you debase what it means to be human with your narrow-mindedness and lack of will. WE decide who we are and what we do. If your family was murdered you can either grief for a while and deal with the pain and move on, live in denial for the rest of your life, or just immerse yourself in the grief until you want to kill the pathetic excuse for a human that you are. It would be YOUR CALL.

          • divya April 3, 2014 at 9:58 AM

            i so agree with u! such ruthless assholes! one even brought up cancer in this discussion! i mean can u believe it ! hah! depression effects the brain! one looses control over his thinking ability or the ability to make decisions! cancer doe not do that plus ony by ur thoughts ..nothing really can be cured without medication! such oblivious fools! the article completely pissed me off!

          • Gurkiran April 30, 2014 at 3:32 AM

            This is a very hard, controversial thing to talk about, and no one will ever get round to the real reason unless you’re prepared to eradicate it.
            Depression.. well… Some of us don’t know if we have it, so we can’t get much recognition? How do we know if we don’t seek help? When you’re feeling at your lowest point, you don’t seek for help do you. Some people seek or wallow in pity, afraid to speak up for themselves.
            As being said everything we speak about in life is very controversial. For example I can’t say depression doesn’t exist, but I’m convinced that I have had some sort of slump in my life. We all go through phases. It’s just molly coddled. It’s emphasised too much. We don’t speak to each other in a good manner, shit happens to us and we just wallow. We don’t talk. When you don’t feed yourself and you stop talking to people, you fall into ruts and then you wonder why you’re feeling this way. I’ve been there so I know. Depression isn’t selfish just like suicide isn’t selfish. Suicide was there because we let it get to us – from a young age we’re more prone to be vulnerable and less efficient.
            So overall, judging by this blog, I need enough evidence and back up to suggest that depression is selfish.

          • LogicOverEmotions July 9, 2014 at 12:45 AM

            You are calling us close minded ignorant fools because we agree with an intelligent writer? People in third world countries deal with Rape and dead family constantly, they are not raised well, and guess what, they are still not depressed; as the writer said, they do not have time to mope about feeling sorry for themselves. You clearly missed the entire point of this article. Not everyone has emotions programmed differently, we are all humans (sadly). You do not seem to understand that the use of profanity and angry tone in your response reveals to the average person that you are not qualified in anyway to respond correctly to this article. You should simply keep your silly thoughts to yourself.

          • Susan Lea Rudd July 9, 2014 at 7:10 AM

            Toma was the one who as a non-qualified, ignorant fool proceeded to write an article insulting and degrading depressed people. He nullifys scientific research as if he is some sort of god. He deserves every foul comment he got.

            Who says poor people and/or natives or people long ago don’t/ didn’t get depressed??? Just because no one is researching or writing about it doesn’t mean it didn’t/isn’t happening. Actually there is much evidence people did have mental illness – but I am sure Toma would dismiss it.

            Many religious people want to believe that life was soooooo much better during some long ago time – which is simply BS. Yes there were fewer divorces 50 years ago; people just stayed miserably married. Once women gained rights and economic power, they had the means to support themselves and dump abusive jackasses. More women than men initiate divorce. Could it be because men are unreasonable toads that have refused to change with the times? Could this be why rates of depression are higher in women (always)?

          • elvis January 16, 2014 at 8:00 PM

            juan laguerta you are amazing i guess by your estimation and logic everyone that dies of cancer just gave in and conceeded to cancer. you are a moron no more could a person decide to be taller than decide to beat cancer or not have depression…why would anyone decide to have depression…i understand that you are frustrated and therefor use capitalization improperly either address a genuine topic with genuine points or fuck off. You are a piece of shit and if you and i lived close together fuck all this internet stuff i would beat the living shit out of you you ignorant small minded piece of shit.

          • Natalie March 15, 2014 at 7:35 AM

            Instead of attacking Juan for expressing a valid opinion, have you tried looking at the validating support you’ve received so far? I don’t agree with either because life is way too complicated, and honestly, why our opinions on this matters beats me. There are so many different types of people and just too much intolerance and validation-seeking.

          • Beth Mastrodonato June 14, 2014 at 10:48 AM

            does anyone know who this jerk Natalie is really–she has a lot of arguments to blow anyone out of the water who disagrees with TOMa…so is it him or his mother, sister or girlfriend or his disciple or what..look thru and see her postings. You may need a bag to throw up in

          • Craig February 22, 2014 at 12:35 PM

            Your level of ignorance needs not to be addressed as it’s obviously through the roof. And your intellect needs not to be addressed, as one can clearly see by not only your perspective but your grammar and your choice of language, that your level of education and IQ are well obviously lacking. So, I guess all of that being said; there is nothing really to be addressed… ;)

          • Natalie March 15, 2014 at 7:32 AM

            I can see where you’re coming from, Craig, but I can also see where Ro is coming from. How about not attacking someone for having a different opinion from the masses? I’m sure it gets frustrating for Ro. You have a ton of support here, so just try enjoy it and feel validated in your view.

          • dan March 21, 2014 at 7:43 AM

            At craig . Pure and sweet . Nothing else needs to be said

          • Joe Crowley February 26, 2014 at 4:52 AM

            ironically it seems as if you’ve just acted on a very judgmental and close-minded impulse yourself. You really need to consider other people’s lives more realistically without your opinion being clouded by your own biases. Like your clear jealousy towards people who have more money than you. It was not my choice for my father to die, it was not my choice for my mother to be mentally disabled, it was not my choice to be abused physically and verbally for years in my own home by my family. It’s not my fault my family never had any money. It is not my fault that I have a tendency to think down on myself, though I know better, and luckily for me I don’t HAVE to be depressed about such things. But I have grown much and am not as fortunate as other people with even worse lives than me.

          • Natalie March 15, 2014 at 7:39 AM

            so much yes

          • sharille fournier March 4, 2014 at 1:59 AM

            i have to say you are an idiot Juan Laguerta. You also obviously do not have a command of the English language because the F work seems to be used for everything. Telling someone who is obviously ill and desperate to jump off a balcony is irresponsible. Get a life and stop swearing and using capitals to state your case. You can’t judge until you live in someone else’s shoes and this man’s article is ridiculous.

          • Juan Laguerta March 4, 2014 at 2:53 PM

            Is this seriously your rebuttal? “you suck, you dont know what its like until youve been there, just cos someone wants to kill themselves doesnt make them irresponsible”. Good job. Good job. Very nice. You told me.

          • Natalie March 15, 2014 at 7:43 AM

            Let me see if I have this right…so you deserve validating support for your clearly biased opinion and any possible personality disorder(s) while Juan deserves to be be called names? Hmm..

          • mickey April 28, 2014 at 12:28 PM

            Juan, you are a very scared person, frightened of losing control- very obvious. thinking positively is a state of mind- do you know what that means? it is TAUGHT. when one is taught to hate themselves, when they are horrendously abused, when they are SOLD into slavery, how exactly do you think they can wake up one day and say “oh gee, I will just fart rainbows and sunshine” cause I just feel like it! there are many people out there who have had no direction in life, who were never cared for. you are obviously VERY sheltered- you also need to expand your mind with education- read a book. actually read a lot, you need it.

          • what was that March 7, 2014 at 1:57 AM

            Yes because clearly you know the ins and outs of medical depression. Lets not even get into manic depression here shall we because if I started that you would be wrong on every assertion. Depression is not something you simply choose to have or not have in the end if it is real depression your body does not have the chemicals to generate these oh so positive emotions that you like so much. Why dont you provide me some cited proof on a few things along with a detailed medical examination on how depression is all in the head. As for making choices to do things how about you consider that choices are nothing more then little tiny things that happen in your brain that accumulate to make said choice.

          • Juan Laguerta March 7, 2014 at 8:48 AM

            I won’t give you jack shit. In the mean time enjoy wallowing in your own pathetic self pity with the nice little excuse you’ve conjured up because that’s what you want. Clearly you’re not interested in changing the way you think, all you’re interested in is making your current shitty state of mind OK to have. You’re not interested in changing because if you were truly interested in changing you wouldn’t have depression in the first place. You’re like a drug addict that’s out telling people that drugs are actually ok rather than facing his own damn shitty choices and just not doing the fucking drugs. Enjoy. Don’t let me take depression away from you because that’s clearly all you’ve got seeing how dearly you cling on to it.

          • Cat March 25, 2014 at 6:25 AM

            As someone who’s chronically depressed, comes in waves, thoughts of suicide.. I think I’m selfish. I have so much to live for, I have so many opportunities. I’m young. Sure my dad was an alcoholic, I watched him abuse my mom my whole life, I was somewhat of a druggie in high school, I dropped out, my sister fucked my boyfriend lol.. I really fucked things up for myself because I spent most of my time sitting in the closet and crying about how fucked up the world is and how fucked up my life is. Feeling bad for myself all of the time. I knew I was selfish at the time too. And over the years of trying to fight this, I’ve noticed that all I have to do is do my laundry and clean my room to feel a bit better. Paint and write, push myself out of the house in the morning just because I know the sun will be good for my Psyche. Sometimes I feel like I have no feelings and it scares me, and then i get depressed x) sometimes I get depressed because I’m selfish, and I’m selfish because I’m depressed lol it’s a ridiculous cycle, and I’m tired of being selfish, I’m tired of being depressed. I know that it’s not rational, I will always be able to find something to be sad about. I’m selfish as all hell. I could be making something of myself to make the world I constantly cry about a bit better. I can be happy, I just have to make it happen for myself. I believe that this thought process that I’ve become stuck in is a habit and that I can free myself of it by simply being productive and being a “good parent to myself” as my mother likes to say (: but yeah, stop fighting. Reading this I just see so much repressed anger lol love will cure everyone of their diseases, at least that’s what I hope.. You won’t know until you try

          • Cat March 25, 2014 at 6:36 AM

            Also.. I kind of really believe that we have the power to influence our physical state with our state of mind, I’m no expert on any of this so this is really just an opinion based on observation.. My mom and my dad are supposedly manic depressives, and I can definitely see how that’s true x) I also think they’re selfish.. And deeply interesting people. I love them to death don’t get me wrong. Anyway, my mom was on anti-depressants, she isn’t anymore, they helped but she was neurotic. Too much energy, it was fake. When she didn’t have them she was a mess. Worse than before she started. I couldn’t get her out of bed for a month. She was addicted and couldn’t function without them. My dad is a citizen but Mexican, he also “needed” to get prescribed some anti-depressants. They used him as a guinea pig. It was bad. Too much of this, take some of that, try some of this, take more of that. They were sucking them dry financially. I believe that they want us to believe that it’s a disease because this society that we live in is concerned about profitability, not their patients. If we believe that we’re sick and that the pills will take away the sadness then we’ll spend as much money as we can to make that happen. We work, we get our wage, we spend it on happy pills, repeat the process.. We become zombies/automatons for the system focused on expansion and profit. I’m probably biased and missing a lot of the pieces to the puzzle but this is what I’ve gathered. I will find a way to be happy without the help of drugs of any sort. Sunshine and productivity is my medicine.

          • Toma March 25, 2014 at 6:59 AM

            You’ve understood more than enough. Pharmaceutical companies want us hooked. Anti-depressants and anti-psychotics are perfect for them as we take them daily, and indefinitely. It’s not a conspiracy theory. It’s business logic.

          • Cat March 25, 2014 at 7:58 AM

            I have one more thing to add, it’s okay to be selfish sometimes. Just because someone has it worse doesn’t mean you have to write off the pain that you do feel because that’s not going to help at all. It’s good to recognize that you are not the only one that pains in life, but it’s also good to give your own pain recognition and accept that it’s there, you have to be able to comfort yourself before you move on. Like my mom said, you have to be a good parent to yourself. The trick is not getting stuck in a loop of negative thoughts. That happens to me, I’ll hurt and then there will be this voice that says REALLY awful things about me to me. It physically struck me down once, it was terrifying. And I realized that I gave that negative voice too much power. There will always be a negative voice, everybody has one. But there’s also a positive one that you need to listen to. Balance is difficult, but it is key to remaining sane and functional. You have to let the negative voice be constructive criticism instead of just cruel. We all have flaws, if you embrace them the negative voice won’t have much to go on.

          • Cat March 25, 2014 at 8:15 AM

            I think people are also forgetting the fact that it’s systemic. I blame it on capitalism x) This is an individualistic society, everyone is very involved in themselves. And then the media, wanting to make profit of course, objectifies the individual to sell corporate products. We all have this image of what we should be. Girls get depressed because they’re not skinny, they don’t have that “thigh gap” or perky boobs, boys get depressed because they don’t have abs or a big cock. We have all of these ideas of what we should be and we don’t embrace what we are. It feeds that negative voice. And our school system, starting from when we are very young, encourage us to be “The Best” and we end up constantly comparing ourselves to each other. As a society we have become selfish. Depression and suicide rates have skyrocketed if nobody has noticed lol the link between suicide and capitalism? There’s something to think about.

          • divya April 3, 2014 at 10:03 AM

            thank u!

          • Pete April 4, 2014 at 5:12 PM

            @juan laguerta,

            In the last decade, about 100,000 U.S. veterans and active duty military personnel have committed suicide.

            By your account they must be a bunch of pussies, right?

          • Toma April 4, 2014 at 5:16 PM

            Hi Pete. Shit no. I actually wrote a post about PTSD after a war veteran commented on this article.

            http://tomahaiku.com/ptsd-discussing-the-mental-spiritual-causes-solutions/

          • Maple March 18, 2014 at 1:51 AM

            Okay, Juan, I can see where you’re coming from – to a degree. I can see how you think depression is selfish and pathetic. You look at a depressed person and probably think/say, “Grow a pair and stop bitching.”

            But has it ever occurred to you – any of you that think its selfish – that depressed people do not know that they’re depressed? It’s not until someone drags them in to see a doctor or therapist that they know – and even then some live in denial!

            Or has it ever occurred to you that that depressed person has a little voice in their head feeding them negative lies? The voice distorts their perception of the world over time, rendering it so that they can no longer see happiness.

            Yes, people who come from broken homes and have gotten abused can make something out of their life. But the chances of them falling into depression increase. Why? Think of it this way: All your life – ever since you can remember – you’ve been put down and compared and been called degrading names. Or been physically/sexually abused. Ever since you can remember, no one in your home cares for you. You’ve been neglected. This gives life to three viewpoints: To some, it breeds hate and thus leads them into violence and gangs. Others, they take from that experience and use it to change the world for the better. And the third way is falling into self-loathing and/or depression.

            Let’s focus on the third one, shall we?

            Your personality and mentality sprouts from how you are raised and the people you hang out with. If you come from a broken home where everyday someone puts you down, you’d start to believe it eventually. Why? Because that was how you were raised. You were raised to believe that you’re a piece of shit and no one wants you. Thoughts start to form in your head – dangerous thoughts – and soon you feel your world crumbling. The brain, due to having it in that mind-set, distorts your world to only see the negative. To only think the negative. And if that’s how you’re raised, you don’t see the problem.

            So you’re already in this depressed mind-set when someone comes up to you and says, “You’re selfish.”

            BAM! That comment only fuels the negative thoughts, which in turn fuels the distorted world, which then fuels the depression. Only you don’t know you’ve got depression because those thoughts have been there for as long as you can remember.

            Slowly your world gets darker and you start to feel hopeless and numb. Some might turn to cutting just to feel alive. “Attention whore! Desperate bitch! You’re so emo!” People exclaim upon noticing what you’re doing.

            More fuel for the blue flame.

            Eventually you just don’t see the point of living anymore. ‘What’s the point?’ You think. ‘If this is my life, what’s the point?’ And that’s when you decide upon suicide.

            Do you see now, Juan? Do you see what these people are going through? They can’t help it. Calling them selfish isn’t the way to go. Usually when people are depressed, they have more problems than just a stood-up date. That stood-up date could have just been the straw that broke the camel’s back and triggered the depression.

            Just because your problems aren’t as big as someone else’s, it doesn’t make them insignificant.

          • Sister Latch Key March 21, 2014 at 6:00 AM

            Strange.

          • maria March 20, 2014 at 1:16 PM

            juan laguerta, you don’t even know how depressed you are, for even make the comment you made

          • Natalie March 21, 2014 at 2:30 AM

            The depressed like to bring others into their misery, too. As satisfying as it might be to you, Juan is not depressed by his comment.

            You and all the other selfish crybabies here expect agreement – of course he’s frustrated.

          • i don't get the point June 8, 2014 at 12:51 PM

            depressed people don’t like to bring other to misery , in fact we don’t want other people to know, and that’s a huge problem. I never told anyone about it, answering only “i’m fine” , “it’s okay, i just got a bad sleep night”. The psychology is the only guy i ever told about it. Why would i make other people suffer for something they cleary can’t do anything ? People around would only look at me as “illness and sad”, and worry.

          • Yara March 23, 2014 at 2:26 PM

            Reading this reminded me of the lack of empathy in society today. You are a shinning example of ignorance. You’re argument about cancer confuses me. If you believe people beat cancer because they told their body too, what about those who don’t? Also, material wealth has nothing to do with depression, ever heard the phrase money can’t buy you happiness? The reason some people idolize depression is because sadness is the feeling they connect to, it consumes them, and yes, its a cycle thats hard to get out of. Truth is, you are a very politically incorrect individual, words like “retard” are demeaning. No body grows up wanting to die, its the events in life that make us that way. Can you really look at a rape victim, or a severely bullied individual in the eye and tell them that it’s their fault? I understand the value to resilence, but one person can only take so much. Educate yourself.

          • anon April 1, 2014 at 4:19 PM

            Natalie , youre bringing everyone down with your own misery . youre a judgemental selfish person who doesnt know anything . Youre a big fat hypocrite to sit there and judge others. Youre no doctor . Maybe someday you’ll get depressed and no one understands your pain . Karma.

          • Natalie April 1, 2014 at 11:14 PM

            To anon below, I’m not miserable, and I can’t say I don’t know anything. But maybe you’re right that I’ll get depressed and no one will understand you. I’m OK with that.

          • Natalie April 1, 2014 at 11:19 PM

            And when guilt doesn’t work…name-calling and minimizing the dissenter is the new game plan, apparently.

            I guess the truly depressed (apparently something I’ve never experienced) want full support to wallow in their misery instead of seeing a new point of view. We already knew that.

          • Shamuel March 25, 2014 at 3:04 PM

            Wow. I have a lot to say about you laguerta. First of keep this argument kind. Don’t blame or insult others, but just express your opinion. I’m going to do that right now. I think that it is not your fault that something happened that makes you sad. It is cruel to call people suffering with sadness the cause and to make them feel guilty by blaming them. Life happens and it is how everyone deals with it. It sounds like those who think sadness is selfish hasn’t experienced sadness first hand or just doesn’t understand what it means. Don’t go making opinions about other people without knowing yourself. This is just my opinion after all and anyone can agree or disagree with me as they choose. But please don’t be cruel and insult and blame others.

          • Shannon March 28, 2014 at 7:44 PM

            I would much rather be someone who goes through depressive phases, than be a hateful, angry creature like you. Yes, sometimes I am depressed- but I don’t think I’m a horrible human being because of it. If you are going to go on a rant on ungrateful people who don’t contribute to society, why are you sitting on a computer pointlessly arguing about a topic that will never be resolved? Why don’t you go do some good in the world like helping feed starving children in poverty stricken countries, or provide clean water sources for those communities. Doesn’t the thought of them and the thought of you living so lavishly make you look pathetic and demented as well? Perspective, my friend. You know nothing of the minds of others, as I know nothing of yours. You have never experienced anything outside of your own consciousness. Whatever has influenced you in your life and helped create these ideals has not done so to the rest of ours. We all see and understand and perceive things differently.

          • olivia April 5, 2014 at 3:30 AM

            Having suffered from both cancer and depression at 16, I can tell you that depression is a shit load harder to both deal with and overcome. Yes people with terminal cancer don’t overcome their illness, but many do become depressed because of this. Please don’t be so ignorant.

          • Cheryl April 5, 2014 at 9:59 AM

            Ok, this is so ridiculous. Depression is not about will power. It is a chemical imbalance in the brain. When you feel certain feelings and believe certain things it is your brain releasing chemicals. Your hormones alone rule a great deal of how you feel. That is why people can get in an accident, have brain trauma and have a whole portion of their personality change. If you feel like you can pull yourself up by your bootstraps, then by all means go ahead but, be grateful that you have the balance of health to do so. DO NOT put another down for not being able to. THAT IS SELFISH. It is a medical situation. Not willpower. This musing over how we feel people should act cause “in our experience” they’ve exhausted our good graces, is ridiculous. You can tell a schizophrenic to stop hearing voices but, it’s just not gonna happen. EVEN if it bothers your precious senses. Clinically depressed people need medical help. What they don’t need is people like you making it even harder. I would say your anger and lack of compassion is more of an issue.

          • Johnathan Murphy April 7, 2014 at 6:52 AM

            Juan Laguerta you are stupid. You are also using caps lock like a 5 year old and cussing like a 12 year old. BTW your “cussing, negative opinion” is not wanted I didnt even finish reading your comment you stupid person. Go caps lock on a video game and cuss and the teens because your brain is obviously on the same track as a stupid teen.

          • Mike Wade April 11, 2014 at 4:50 AM

            Juan. I feel for you. People are being pretty hard on you even though someone close to you obviously committed suicide. I have always had a great life and I am a dick and I am bipolar. I like this article because it started a discussion. If you want someone to talk to I will send you my twitter ID.

            I wish there was more conversation and less stigma about mental illness. With education I may have recognized symptoms and could have been able to take this articles advice to prevent a depression.

            My grandma had cancer and the family talked about it and supported her and I had never seen her happier… Probably because she was sckitzophrink. Think it’s hard to spell, it is harder to understand. I didn’t want to talk to her because I she was usually laying on the couch. My dad is diagnosed bipolar but has the stigma and won’t take medication. (Wish he would). I didn’t hear about their diagnosis until I had a manic episode.

            I have been clean and sober of any events for 6 years. I take very little medication with the goal of getting off completely.

            All I know is nobody knows what is happening with bipolar.

            It’s think it’s like being gay because it is not a choice. Juan, you can have your opinions from what you have read and experience. You might be the one person who has the right answer (probably not).

            Let’s keep talking about it and use all the science available to us to better understand.

            If you want to twit about it my comments won’t be able to be this long.

          • Peri July 4, 2014 at 6:12 AM

            You mean schizophrenic? xD

          • Julia April 20, 2014 at 10:42 AM

            By your logic, people who suffer from depression do not have the right to be depressed because other people have it worse. Does this mean if I know other people have a better life then me (they found love, they have a better functioning family) does this take away my rights to be happy?

            And to adress the point of your paper. I understand why you feel like people who suffer from depression should just get “over it”, however I think that you are not acknowledging that depression is not just feeling sad.
            It takes a mental and physical hold on you. I would like you to take 5 minutes (since you claim to be so open-minded) to read the article to which I will provide the link to at the bottom. It is published by Harvard Health Publications, so you can trust what it says…
            A depressed person will not “act on every impulse” and completely lack will power. When depressed, a person will have good moments, and moments when they feel like they should stop fighting the bad thoughts. When we say “depression is a constant fight” we mean the constant struggle to fight the “own bullsh*t”. When not having been happy for several weeks/months/years, people often stop fighting, as it is exhausting on the mind. Try to go through an entire day having to completely change the way you see things. Then keep this new way to view things for several days, then weeks until you believe it. Or maybe try to “make yourself” feel pride and happiness when you loose in a competition. It’s not easy. I do not want to compare depression to cancer, as both are terrible illnesses and take too many lives, but they are just too different. they are completely different illnesses, and it’s like comparing your mind to your heart. Both vital organs, but they function completely different. Depression takes a hold on people for years, and it takes away so many things in their lives. Just because there are no physical symptoms, it does not mean that it is not a serious issue.
            Also, I would like to point out to you that even though I understand your point of view, I find the way that you are trying to prove your point across is very disrespectful, rude and offensive. Telling people who are already at a very high risk of self harm to “jump off a bridge, because (they are) pricks” shows an unbelievable amount of lack of responsibility.
            I believe that depression forms somewhere along the lines of society and how we treat people within society. People who are already mis-treated by family, friends or people within their environment are already feeling bad enough about themselves. When they read such things as you have written in this article, it destroys them to have a complete stranger hate them.
            mental disorders are such a serious concern, because they often have no physical symptoms and are so easy to hide. When people who suffer from un-diagnosed depression will read this, they will not go to seek help. They will think that it’s all their fault and essentially, that is exactly what depression is. It is taking the fault for everything upon yourself, even if you rationally know, it’s not your fault.
            Depression is not what you see in Hollywood movies. It is not having a lot of friends around you to help you through it. It is not to be discovered just as you’re about to commit suicide. It is not magically finding that one person who will cause you to stop self harming.
            Depression is ugly. It is the constant feeling of being disappointed in yourself. It is the constant isolation. It is the constant pain. The casual relieve from pain by feeling completely empty. It is how scared one gets when they want to self harm. It is how scared one gets when they don’t feel anything. It is the constant staying up at night, being scared of the next day. How scary it is when depression causes eating disorders. It is how anxious one gets when they have to go outside. It is how challenging daily tasks get. It is the constant exhaustion.
            Depression is nothing that people would want to have. If all one had to do to cure depression was to think of something happy, it wouldn’t be a serious issue.
            You should look into some other abnormal-psychology topics. I’m curious on your opinion on other mood disorders.

            Here is the article I said I would attach http://www.health.harvard.edu/newsweek/what-causes-depression.htm
            I hope you take some of these things into consideration, and reply to me how you feel about what I said without cursing at me or comparing depression to other sicknesses.

          • Juan Laguerta April 21, 2014 at 7:15 AM

            I appreciate your effort to be calm and objective so I’ll try to match it.
            Everything in the article is basic psychology. It could have been written by a first year psychology student. With that in mind, another fact that first year psych students know is that psychologist still don’t know which is cause and which is effect. They still can’t say for sure if the neurotransmitters and chemicals cause depression or if depression causes the neurotransmitters to adapt and act the way they do. A lot of things can be measured and quantified using instruments and science but that doesn’t mean that they’re real. When you lie, a lie detector detects that you’re lying, but that doesn’t mean a lie is a real thing. A lie is an abstract concept that we created and the lie detector can only detect that you are nervous because YOU know you’re lying. There’s no hard scientific ground for either side of the depression argument so people with depression can still pretend that it’s out of their hands and people like me can still claim that it is not.
            I still think I’m right because I’ve seen what a human can do with pure will power and overcoming negative thoughts is nothing in comparison. Being human IS the constant struggle and change. You have to always try and better yourself and always be on the lookout for the flaws that you’ve got and it never ends because no one is perfect and no one can ever be.
            If people spend years fighting depression with no result then that means that they’re just not fighting hard enough or their brain is broken at this point which means they need to be drugged up big time and the former is FAR more likely than the latter.

          • lisa April 28, 2014 at 11:59 AM

            go suck it…and die

          • sara April 28, 2014 at 12:22 PM

            you are an absolute mental case Juan- how about using some of that “power of the mind” garbage to cure your ranting and raving. sometimes things are terminal- no matter how much sunshine someone shoots up their ass they cant be saved- period. it must be frightening to you to think you have no control over something and that is exactly what you are relaying so translucently in your raving caps all message- you are scared of being out of control this is GLARINGLY obvious. you have a problem- get some help.

          • Juan Laguerta April 28, 2014 at 1:26 PM

            Way off the mark, Sara. It would be really fucking easy to sway anyway the wind blows. It’s how kids work. I don’t have a pathological need for control; a life without control is an easy life, a life where everyone makes your choices for you and you don’t govern your own damn emotions and cognition. But I recognize that as a human it falls under my responsibility to take control of at least what lies WITHIN MY OWN GODDAMN HEAD. Don’t give me stuff about depression being out of your power or chemicals or fucking satan coming down and taking a malicious dump in your cerebral cortex I don’t care I’m just letting you know I don’t desire control because I lack it; I only recognize self-control as an attribute of BEING HUMAN and also recognize that I should take care to enforce it the same way I take care to throw out my garbage every once in a while because logic dictates that if I don’t, it’ll pile up.

            AND HEY
            GUESS WHO HAS A PATHOLOGICAL NEED FOR CONTROL?
            POEPLE WITH DEPRESSION.
            “Only SOME of the things are going according to plan and not EVERYBODY likes me and that’s not how I would have things go so I guess I should kill myself.”
            K, SARA?
            JAVEAGOODDAY.

          • Meg April 29, 2014 at 7:10 AM

            Someone is a little angry. Watch out, anger and depression can go hand in hand, neither is good, both dangerous…

          • leni May 7, 2014 at 4:34 AM

            Did you really just say to jump off a balcony? That’s an assistance in suicide. You’ve got to be fucking stupid. If i go kill myself because you told me to, that’s my blood on your hands. How would that make you feel? Knowing you were involved in my suicide? I hope that makes you feel like complete shit. Go to hell.

          • Juan Laguerta May 7, 2014 at 5:03 PM

            If your life means nothing to you why should it mean anything to me
            That’s not my stance on the matter because every life actually matters but it’s still a valid argument

          • Toma May 7, 2014 at 5:10 PM

            On this one I must disagree. How important we consider our life to be is a subjective assessment. We need to strive for truth and objectivity. Objectively, no matter what we think, our life is more valuable than any of God’s non-spiritual creations. As we must seek to emulate truth and the nature that Jesus showed us, your life means the world to me, no matter what it means to you, and so mine must mean the world to you. This is love.

          • Juan Laguerta May 8, 2014 at 12:54 PM

            All life is valuable, yes
            Objectively, even an inanimate object has value so a LIFE should be worth infinitely more
            I was goin for a little reverse psychology

          • Artemis June 27, 2014 at 5:46 AM

            If you go kill yourself because someone told you to, you’re responsible.

            Someone else can only hurt you emotionally if you allow them to. If you hear Juan’s words and the insecure voice in your head reinforces what he’s said, your emotional hurt is your fault. You acted on what you believed to be true.

            If you practiced teaching the voice in your head to be strong, to be confident, your reaction to Juan’s insult would be to immediately disagree, because within your frame of mind, he’d be wrong. And then you probably wouldn’t go kill yourself.

            Our choices are just that. Ours.

          • Courtney May 8, 2014 at 10:43 AM

            Just saying not every is depressed because of themselves and their own problems. I am depressed because of my friends and i see there problems and there is nothing i can do to help tem. I see there problems and i get stressed out because i dont know what to tell them and im scared they are going to get hurt and dont just say that its because i stress too much because i know thats why but i dont know how to stop stressing so thats why i am depressed not because the only thing i think about is myself and because i am a selfish asshole. And just saying, i dont have an expensve balcony to jump off of.

          • Juan Laguerta May 8, 2014 at 12:50 PM

            I didn’t particularly advocate the notion that depression is selfish; It often is but all I’m saying is that depression is your fault, not anybody else’s. You for example get to pretend like it’s a result of your selflessness, when in reality all it is is that you’re too far up your own ass. You think you can control everybody. You need to get over yourself just as every other depression “victim” needs to get over themselves. And really, if you think about it, no one who is actually selfless could ever be diagnosed with depression because they wouldn’t even pay enough attention to themselves to harbor negativity, let alone notice that they have depression and consider self harm. You imitating the stress of your friends is just another way for you to feed your addiction for demented thoughts that your twisted brain has gown accustomed to.

          • Minnie Jones May 20, 2014 at 5:30 AM

            and some people just die of cancer and they have not done anything for it . It just happens. really helpful shit you are giving here: why don’t you bloody jump of your expensive balcony… one jerk less left.

          • Natalie May 20, 2014 at 9:17 AM

            I don’t understand the comparison. About the only thing these diseases have in common are that they hurt those affected by it as well as their family and friends, and the causes are not well understood.

            For both, there are strategies to minimize effects of the disease.

          • ed May 29, 2014 at 6:35 PM

            Are you fucking serious you, ignorance, judgmental spawn of Satan. Your not worth going any further. X

          • Anonymous May 29, 2014 at 8:48 PM

            You all clearly know nothing about depression. It’s a frickin mental illness. I hope all you pathetic idiots who say depression doesn’t exist end up with it one day. It’s frickin awful. Try crying everyday for no apparent reason. Try feeling so worthless and tired you cant even get out of bed. Try not being able to concentrate for more than a minute because you are so overwhelmed by your depressed thoughts. Try losing your ability to enjoy things. Try feeling so hopeless and sad and hating yourself so much to the point you start to hurt yourself and want to kill yourself. People DIE because of depression. People end up in HOSPITAL because of depression. How can you say depression doesn’t exist? Are you that dumb, pathetic and heartless? If your child started showing symptoms of depression, would you dismiss them as “selfishness”? Would you wait until your chid was holding a gun to their head until you woke up to yourself and realised that maybe they needed help? Depression is a misunderstood topic, because very few understand the human brain and very few ever will. Depression is real whether you want to accept it or not. Oh, and “Juan Laguerta” I hope you get depression and I hope it makes you want to jump off a bridge. Maybe then you’ll realise what its like for those who live with depression.

          • Natalie May 30, 2014 at 5:11 AM

            In my opinion, it’s statements like yours that give depression a bad name. It’s a condition that’s fabricated, and I don’t maw that as an insult..but think about it. You are probably taking some other personality traits that coexist with your depression and assigning those personality or mood characteristics to depression, which probably isn’t to blame for the way you’re thinking/feeling, or at least as much as you think.

            You’re free to dismiss that. I’m not trying to minimize or devalue anyone’s, including my own, mental state.

            But if you can get past feeling personal injury, it does make sense how fabricated depression has become. It’s like Wikipedia of the brain. It is blamed for far too much in a sometimes indiscriminate manner…that’s a reason anyone has to defend their condition, whereas cancer patients do not.

          • Chris July 15, 2014 at 8:04 AM

            Trying to convince someone of how terrible depression is, and then wishing it upon the same person, is probably not the way to get them to listen to you.

            Having said that, there has been a study (by psychiatrist Gerald Klerman and psychologist Myrna Weissman and pushblished in the ‘Journal of American Medical Association’) that in industrialized countries rates of depression increased at an alarming rate after World War II, while in countries less fortunate, they remained stable.

            There is, a clear relationship between industrialization and depression, though it’s probably not industrialization itself. People saying that those in poor countries are less depressed are correct, but the depression in wealthy countries should not be taken lightly. There is reason to suspect that, as poor countries become industrialized, they will take the same road to depression.

            The conclusion of this and several other studies was that people in poor countries have a much stronger emotional support system, meaning that the adversity these people experience brings them closer together.

            Now you only need to look at the article and some the comments here, at some of the blame and lack of empathy, and it’s not really difficult to see why depression is problematic in the first place. The sense of loneliness that depression brings is crippling – that’s one of its biggest problems, and it wouldn’t surprise me (though I have no proof) if that is the leading reason for depressed people committing suicide. You can’t always do it alone.

            As a simple conclusion, I think that those people who tend to be positive thinkers either have a better social/emotional support system in their lives, or they have better learned to regulate their emotions. I agree that emotional regulation can be learned by those who did not learn this in childhood, but it is a slow and difficult process, and probably something they are going to need help with.

            A little bit of patience and understanding goes a long way, is all I’m saying.

          • Joseph Stalin June 21, 2014 at 1:11 PM

            Maybe instead of being an ignorant fucking idiot, why don’t you do some little research instead of going on some shitty crank site. Are you a doctor, therapist, psychologist, no you are fucking not. There is overwhelming evidence showing that free will is all an illusion, and is all in your head. You are not some special creation, you are an advanced computer, an advanced machine. Read Paradise Lost. The environment plays a tremendous role in how you turn out. Neurologists, physicists and many other scientists are agreeing that free will is not real, and is an illusion. So is willpower, it’s all in your head.

            If free will really existed, people would overcome alcohol addictions, smoking addictions, any drug addiction, depression, anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorder, etc… (I think I’ll just stop smoking today!) Just like that! But oh wait, they DON’T!

            They need help, just like a depressed person. A depressed person lacks the pleasure and happiness hormones, like dopamine and seretonin. Just like someone with a drug addiction has problems with their brain. Man, depression really is like explaining color to a blind person. Just like I am explaining a mental disorder to a dumb ignorant person who is about as smart as a bag of hammers..

            You are probably some sheltered rich girl, who lives in her little bubble, full of sunshine and rainbows, and doesn’t know how the world works. But hey, you never had any credibility in the first place, you type in all caps and behave like you have just consumed 10 cups of espresso, and you have the grammar, and mentality of a dumb sheltered kid who has just found the internet a few days ago. I’M LOUDER SO I’M RIGHT! Sorry, doesn’t work that way Sweetheart. The only pathetic and demented one here, is you. Grow. The. Fuck. Up.

            Though you will probably spew more rubbish out of your filthy sewer again and again once you read this. Like they always do. But I don’t care. Can’t reason with this much dumb, and ignorance.

            To all who agree with the OP, you should all be greatly ashamed of yourselves, you are all some of the most ignorant buffoons I have ever encountered. It boggles my mind how air headed you are. Do some actual research, probably won’t do that either. Oh well, bye, Komrades!

          • Juan Laguerta June 21, 2014 at 3:02 PM

            Yeah ok so free will is a creation of human imagination but depression and addictions are 100% percent real and completely out of the control of all subjects “afflicted” by them.
            Do you hear yourself?
            Doesn’t it get tiring trying to rationalize all your bulshit?
            I’m not some sheltered girl
            I’m an adult male
            And what, YOU’RE the neuropsych expert? Do you even know what you’re talking about
            You’re just shitting out words like dopamine and serotonin but you have no idea what they mean because the goddamn scientists don’t even know what they mean
            It’s just speculation
            There’s not even concrete research showing if depression causes the neurotransmitters to fire or if it’s vise versa
            Do you know what scientists do
            Here is science:
            “hey look rain falls when it’s cloudy let’s make a research paper about it”
            But why does it really fall tho
            “Idk but look everytime it trains it’s cloudy they are associated”

            Just because you know a chemical associated with a condition doesn’t mean ANYTHING,
            HELP by definition is something you give to someone who can’t handle their own shit
            And even then no matter how much help you give it doesn’t mean jack shit unless the person wants to change because that’s what matters WHAT YOU WANT
            FREE FUCKING WILL
            Even if free will is just a profound and complex algorithm that still means it’s stronger and more complex than something as shallow and conjured up as depression or addiction.
            Of course a depressed person is gonna lack the fucking happiness hormones because they’re not fucking happy
            Oh this dead person lacks life that’s why they’re dead
            No, they’re dead because some motherfucker stabbed them you anus
            You think happiness just grows on trees?
            Do you just expect to be happy by default?
            It’s not a fucking right
            If you don’t want to be happy you’re not gonna be happy
            If you Truly want to be happy you will be happy

            It’s not I’m louder so im right
            I am right hence I get to be louder
            Im 2 old 4 dis shit

          • Toma June 21, 2014 at 4:35 PM

            If free will doesn’t exist, then I had no choice in writing this article, and you all had no choice in agreeing or disagreeing with it. This also means we should free every prisoner, for without free will no laws have been broken (mens-rea). Those of you who are depressed because you have been abused should also forgive your abusers, for they had no choice. But then again, you will have no choice in whether you forgive them or not, as you have no free will.

            This sort of quantum-driven philosophy exemplifies the mindlessness of people. If you knew yourself at all you would know it not to be true. The physicists who devise it are, not unlike Freud and his predecessors, looking for recognition through innovation. They don’t care about truth, and they certainly don’t care about you.

          • Natalie June 21, 2014 at 11:57 PM

            By your logic if free will doesn’t exist there’s no reason to do anything but practice acceptance.

          • anon June 25, 2014 at 3:50 PM

            youre the whiner. you have to write a 15 page article condemning others for a real documented illness. youre the one who sounds like a jerk here and a selfish depressed person who only thinks of himself.And youre most inhuman.

          • guest July 2, 2014 at 7:55 PM

            Wow you really have everything figured out! Well now with all your WISDOM please tell us why It is you are the one so negative, so angry? I read this blog with an open mind. I took something positive from it even though I would be considered one of the selfish ones. Until I scrolled down and seen your comments. Well that’s ok we are all entitled to our own opinions. My opinion of your hate filled rant is more to do with yourself maybe just Maybe you should take a look in the mirror before you unleash all your WISDOM onto others. Stop judging we all go through things in life. Then something can come your way and it stops you cold in your tracks life gets turned inside out and you have to learn how to live with your new normal and you do you learn to cope with what’s happened but it can take some time. That’s where insight comes in we have to look into oneself to get better! Some of it may be selfish and then you learn once again hey I’m learning to navigate this new normal and I am doing better today because insight helped me see how selfish I’ve been. Anyway insight you seem to have a lot of insight Oh shoot I meant to say you should have some well never mind I shouldn’t tell you what you need that would be so selfish of me.

          • Mamizou February 4, 2015 at 11:47 AM

            @Juan Laguerta

            First I’d like to say that people like you are embarrassing. I cringe just looking at what you’ve written. All caps? Swearing? Do you really believe people are going to take you seriously? Adults who have mentally matured past the age of 15 don’t communicate like this. If you have an opinion, whether it’s an ignorant one or not, please learn to express it in a less ridiculous way.

            Back on topic; I can see you clearly have very strong feelings regarding depression. I cannot understand why as you clearly have no real understanding of how depression works, and if you have no understanding, you have no right to an opinion. I have suffered painful stretches of depression and dysthymia throughout my adolescence and early adulthood so I know what it’s like. No one wants to be depressed. You seem to be confusing legitimately depressed people with attention seekers and “emo” high school kids. There’s a huge difference. Depressed people are just like anyone else. Unfortunately many people are not quite as good at handling the painful parts of life, which leads to skewed ways of thinking and ultimately depression. Over time people develop habits of bottling things up and judging oneself too harshly. Becoming depressed is a natural and inevitable result of an individual running out of ways to cope with pain. It becomes nearly impossible to “snap out of it” or find the motivation to change once you reach this point. Our brains are not functioning correctly. You cannot blame us for this. It’s an illness. Sure, our negative thinking habits helped create the imbalance in our brain chemistry, but tons of illnesses are caused by our actions. Lung cancer can come from the bad habit of smoking, Ebola can be contracted by traveling through West Africa, a leg can be broken due to carelessness. All these things were preventable and completely the victim’s fault. Do you blame them for it? Maybe, if you completely lack empathy and a heart. However most people would want to help the smoker or the traveler or the klutz. They can learn from their past mistakes and change their life around now that they have had a scary experience. Depression is exactly the same. We went down the wrong path and are now searching for a way to get back. And unlike your example of cancer (“THEY PHYSICALLY TOLD THEIR BODIES TO NOT BE SICK AND THEIR BODIES COMPLIED BECAUSE OF THEIR WILL POWER”) our mental illness prevents us from finding such strong willpower. We need others there in our lives who are supportive and understanding. This is the strongest cure for depression. (By the way, no matter how much willpower a cancer patient may have, they still need external help in some way. I personally have always been a very strong person, but when depression hit me I was lost, until I sought help that is).

            Contrary to what you are claiming here, most depressed people don’t “whine”. They don’t talk about their truest real problems, and there is a very simple reason for this; it’s because of people like you. The negative stereotypes about depression, like needing attention and being selfish, terrify us into silence and bottled up rage. Although I myself am no longer depressed, reading your comment brings back feelings of hopelessness and frustration. Not because you have a point (you don’t), but because it’s painful knowing there’s people like you out there who think this way… People who judge others for having an illness or showing emotion… People who gladly embrace ignorance and cruelty rather than intelligence and empathy. No matter how irrational your hateful ideas are, they can severely hurt a depressed person. We cannot handle such harsh criticism when our mental state is already fragile. I do not look down on the smoker who has a hole in his throat despite knowing that the smoker made himself that way. Instead, I feel sorry for him and want to help him back onto the right path. Clearly the smoker doesn’t want that hole in his throat and he regrets what happened. Humans are weak and we need to fight together to overcome these problems, not judge and ridicule our flawed comrades.

            I realize you may have experienced something which caused you to have this negative outlook, but unless you change this outlook, don’t expect anyone to care about you when you need help most. Part of being mature and intelligent is understanding other people and learning to be compassionate. You accuse depressed people of “thinking like a retard” and “being a prick because they chose to kill themselves.” But who’s really the prick here? The person who has a weakness and needs help? Or the person who completely lacks empathy and refuses to see things from someone else’s point of view?

            I sincerely hope no one suffering depression had to read your comment, and to any have have, I apologize to you for this person. Despite that people like this exist, there are plenty of compassionate individuals out there who understand your pain and genuinely want to help you. I also apologize for this article which belittles your illness to nothing more than a figment of your imagination. It’s just as real as cancer so seek help, find those who are there for you and are mature enough not to judge. It can only get better once you start doing these things, as it did for me. Good luck to you all!

          • Maggie February 13, 2015 at 6:40 PM

            Your a sick motherfucker! I hope someday your riddled with cancer and depressed, then you can see just how well it works to “will it away”. I’ never thought I would wish that on anyone…but you deserve it you selfish bastard!

          • Maggie February 13, 2015 at 6:48 PM

            I’m sorry, the above reply is meant for Juan! I’m surprised I he the guts to write ,y post, but sometimes ya just gotta say it!

          • Natalie February 15, 2015 at 3:28 AM

            You must think you’re God! Dang!

          • Laura January 22, 2014 at 5:22 AM

            Thank you Bill this is very ignorant as a neuroscience major with a specialty in mood disorders, it is clear that this girl does not understand what real depression is, and is more following the ignorant stigma created by media. I sense that she probably has someone in her life that she cares a lot about that has depression and shes just lashing out because depression is hard to deal with when caring for love ones. I could go into all the neuro-chemical reactions that occur in the brain in major depressive disorder, however she will not understand that terminology or any of the science of it because she clearly is not educated in this field, and she needs to do her research before shes states such a powerful opinion because she only looks ignorant and foolish with absolutely no validity in her statements.

          • Ferris Wheeller January 22, 2014 at 5:27 PM

            It doesnt take a fucking a neurosciemce major to figure out thaf yiu dont use your brain then your iq drops and int the same way if u dedicade your brain to sulking in your piss and tears it will comply

          • Kris Bundy (@blafls) February 10, 2014 at 5:22 PM

            It takes a neuroscience major to find out why. And no, your brain is nothing like a muscle. If you don’t eat for a few days, you don’t need to eat certain foods to reactivate your digestive system. Thanks for the depression stigma though, it’s great to know that there are still people out there making depression seem like less of a big deal. People really need encouragement when they think that their lives mean nothing. Please be a troll. My faith in humanity kind of depends upon it.

          • Estaban Haroon February 10, 2014 at 9:03 PM

            The brain is adaptive, that is a scientific fact. If all you wallow in your own piss you’ll get piss stains all over your psyche. Depression isn’t your brain responding to the world, it’s your brain responding to your own shitty thoughts.

          • Natalie March 15, 2014 at 7:45 AM

            So everyone is supposed to understand you? How selfish can you be? Jeez

          • Sam April 7, 2014 at 12:53 AM

            Natalie – What is your problem? You’ve done nothing but respond negatively to countless posts on here whenever somebody makes a comment that indicates they believe depression is a lot more complicated than this ridiculous article and many of the posters on here seem to think it is. Your immature, snarky comments don’t contribute anything substantial to the discussion. And you have the nerve to ask somebody else how selfish can they be. Why don’t you ask yourself that same question? How selfish can YOU be to constantly post the same ignorance over and over again in response to various different people just because you don’t agree with their point of view? You seem to think that your point of view is important enough to be posted ad nauseam, but you belittle anybody whose view you don’t agree with. Get over yourself!

          • Natalie April 7, 2014 at 11:33 PM

            Maybe the thread structure doesn’t reflect this accurately, but the only thing I’ve called selfish is name-calling anyone who doesn’t offer a pat on the back and sympathetic agreement. I did not name-call and don’t intend to insult.

            I maintain that it’s selfish to call me insecure and snarky because I don’t agree with you. I can’t influence how you react.

          • Natalie April 7, 2014 at 11:48 PM

            And let’s not call this a discussion…when any opposing views can’t be tolerated.

            This thread is interesting to me. I wonder where the voices of the depressed who aren’t aggressively seeking validation are. Is this the only face of depression? From some of the comments, I do see that there are some voices from individuals who are depressed but who aren’t engulfed in anger, defensiveness. Not all try to control what exists in others’ minds and what comes out of their mouths.

            In my opinion (and that’s all it is, so feel free to not take it personally), your attempts at belittling my opinion (and me) are a result of your own hypersensitivity.

            Sometimes I am immature and insecure – I don’t see how this has to do with qualifying or disqualifying me to voice my opinion. Let me guess by your example – do I have to be seething anger and need for validation to have your approval to post?

            That may be a personality trait, unrelated with depression. This thread is overtaken with similar comments.

          • Jonathan Gray April 12, 2014 at 10:30 PM

            You are calling other people selfish. You are on the internet, behaving like a spoilt child, because it gives you pleasure, actively causing others to become upset, and you call others selfish?

            You are a very unpleasant individual. This is evident to anyone from your posts.

            You don’t have an ‘opposing view’. You are denigrating and abusing the subjective experiences of others, because it fills the hole in your soul.

            Why are you here? What makes you think behaving in this manner is acceptable? It isn’t. Go away, idiotic child.

          • Natalie April 13, 2014 at 10:28 AM

            Sad it had to come to this same place.

          • Sidney April 17, 2014 at 11:10 AM

            You’re such a Bitch!!! You are telling me a 14 year old that I am selfish!!! Because I chose to be mentally abused by my soccer coach. I chose to ask myself when I was 4 why no one loved me. I chose for my so called friends to reject me and call me names. I chose to hate myself. My so called teammates called me the team punching bag, because you know I chose that. My mom just like you told me to stop pitying myself, to try harder. When everyday I tried my best. I keep telling myself I am being selfish and that I’m not good enough. I can’t look anyone in the eyes not even my family, because I felt like they would be able to see my pain and I don’t want to “burden them”. I have yet to tell anyone that I have depression because I don’t want to be selfish. But do you know what that does? It eats at me. This little voice in my head keeps telling me that I’m worthless, that no one cares about me, that I am ugly, that I am selfish, and it tells me to give up. I chose to feel that. I tell myself that I shouldn’t feel this when they’re are people out their getting abused, people who are starving. So I see why you may think that I am selfish. But if you don’t have depression where it’s constantly telling you that you’re worthless and that you should just give up, then you just shut the fuck up unless you have a MD degree and have learned about this disease. You clearly don’t know what your talking about if you’re telling me a 14 year old that I am selfish because I apparently “chose” to have depression. Grow the fuck up. I feel bad for you tho. Because either you have gone through something that cause you to become such a Stuck Up Princess who doesn’t know the actually FACTS, or how dealing with depression really feels. Or you could just have been a born decedent of the devil. Either way I hope someday you will grow up and open your mind to the idea of how some things aren’t always how they appear. Because I put a fake smile on everyday and force a laugh that makes me happy and I couldn’t possible have depression. Or how a psycho could look completely normal at first until he starts a massacre. Soooo… Overall I want to thank you for your point of view and I see were you come from. I just hope that you can see were mine comes from. But if you don’t thats fine. :)

          • Peter April 27, 2014 at 8:15 AM

            Actually, your brain is kind of like a form of muscle in many ways.
            For example, why do you think people say that exercising your brain can prevent Alzheimer’s Disease?
            Because you train it, and keep in in shape.
            Also, your own attitude to things will dramatically affect how you experience things.
            Surely you have heard of the Placebo Effect?
            This is actually a phenomenon that even doctors have noticed, and it can have an incredible effect on both your physical body and your well-being.

            I don’t like how depressed people are considered some kind of helpless victims who are “unable do anything on their own”.
            Yes, they are depressed, but a lot of people go through depression at least once during their lifetime, and depression gives you a twisted view of reality, and makes you believe all kinds of negative crap about yourself that isn’t true.
            I don’t care how convinced the depressed people on here are that their negative thoughts about themselves and their lives are “true”, they are not.
            Depression makes you think like that, and if those people can just realize that then they are one step closer to getting out of the depression.

          • RJ April 30, 2014 at 12:30 AM

            My comment is mainly addressed to Sidney. Sorry about the way things are going for you. I more than understand as much as it is possible for one person to relate to walking a mile in another person’s shoes so to speak. I spent so much time in my life in similar situations and circumstances with a side order of physical violence added to the mix that at the same age of four I made up my mind . . . thank God I was not like ‘them’ and I knew I never wanted to be one of ‘them’. I also decided that no mater what, they would not break me. Your mere existence pisses ‘them’ off just think how your cocky survival is going to twist their underwear into a
            proverbial bundle. I was convinced that every slight, abuse, name calling, punch, ridicule, put down just served to make me stronger, more determined, and thankful that I was different esp from ‘them’. It took a few more years to deal with the anger because at times anger was the only thing keeping me alive. One day it dawned on me that anger was making me into one of ‘them’ and that was exactly what their intention was all along. To attack, snatch and grab at any difference and goodness they saw in others until they destroyed it thereby adding one more miserable person to their rank an file. Hell no they do not get to change me! Hell no! Because I am different only makes me different. I do not measure myself or my life by their yard stick. I did not choose this but how I choose to handle it, react ,and what kind of person I become because of it those things are my responsibility. Just like I did you will make your own way . . . one way or the other. I wish you nothing but the best in life.

          • joe April 28, 2014 at 6:25 AM

            nice one bill

          • Beth Mastrodonato June 14, 2014 at 10:45 AM

            totally agree Bill

          • Steve Jobbs June 10, 2014 at 7:19 AM

            “Don’t criticize what you can’t understand,” – The Times Are Changing – Bob Dylan.

          • Toma June 10, 2014 at 7:44 AM

            Does this apply to those who don’t understand my writing??

          • dewall December 8, 2013 at 12:58 PM

            Very well stated

          • terry101man December 10, 2013 at 9:51 AM

            Your story sounds identical to my Step-Doughters, I’m very concerned about her and could realy use some advise from some one who has been through it 1st hand. Could we please communicate by email or private message on facebook. I realy am woryed about her.

          • Washington Irving January 2, 2014 at 4:59 PM

            Learn to spell. It will make everything better.

          • elli adkins February 14, 2014 at 5:06 AM

            I have “had” depression. I was prescribed medication and everything. And even i can say it is something of the mind. Its the placebo affect. You think you are depressed. You say you could not control your depression, therefore you are bringing it upon yourself. Look up details about the placebo affect. You may just save yourself from your “depression.”
            Oh, and you should not go accusing others of “not knowing because they did not experience it firsthand”, it is an ignorant thing to do. The writer was writing simply to educate, not to offend you.

          • Natalie March 15, 2014 at 7:46 AM

            Thanks, elli. I’m amazed there are so many one-sided validation seekers around. No wonder there’s no such thing as tolerance.

          • Nor March 19, 2014 at 2:19 AM

            Couldn’t have put it better myself.

          • impossiblegirl April 1, 2014 at 4:48 PM

            I’m glad that you had a minor depression that could be ‘cured’ by positive thoughts or whatever. Good for you. There IS a difference, though, between a minor depression and a depressive disorder.

            I have Major Depressive Disorder. Something I didn’t even think I had until my parents forced me to go to a psychologist. I have since been on eight different types of medication and to five different therapists. Nothing works. I can be fine for months or years and then suddenly fall into depression again, sometimes with no reason.

            Yet I still go about my life, I still function. I am studying at university, I want a good job that will help people, I refuse to take disability consideration as I consider it cheating (for me, there are many others who have it worse than me).

            I could go into the myriad things that trigger my periods of depression – PTSD from sexual assault being the major one. But there are also many reasons in my life to be happy. I have a wonderful family that I wouldn’t trade for anything (despite the genetic anxiety my mother passed on to me, haha) and wonderful friends. I am privileged enough to go to university, and to live in Australia, and I am a kind and caring person. I just happen to have days where I can’t get out of bed, and sometimes those days can go on for weeks or months.

            Because the synapses in my brain that pass serotonin through are broken. They don’t work properly. They stop working altogether occasionally, for no real reason – and it’s physically impossible to think happy thoughts (or at least believe them) when you have no serotonin in your brain.

            I spend most of this time, not thinking about how depressed I am, but how guilty I feel about being depressed when there’s no reason to be, when I have a lovely life. About how much of a burden I am on other people when I am like that. Trust me, you don’t need to tell a person with depression that they are selfish or a burden – they already know. Or believe it.

            Anyway, what annoys me is that no one commenting on this post agreeing with the OP has actually HAD a depressive disorder. When I can’t get out of bed, it’s not laziness or just me being too sad to go about my day – your brain literally attacks your whole body and makes you sick. It’s a very physical inability to get up. And it’s not caused by negative thoughts, as you all claim – it can happen overnight, from having a perfectly normal happy day to not being able to function the next.

            I used to wallow. I used to feel sorry for myself. Now I just live with it and tackle the bad days when they come, and a lot of people I know don’t even know I have depression. But what made me comment today is that people still share stereotypes of depression, and try to undermine real scientific study of the condition – while actively trying to make someone who already hates themself do so even more.

            It’s this kind of thinking that will next suggest that bipolar or psychosis are not ‘real illnesses’. Try taking someone with psychosis off their medication and telling them they can cure themselves with realistic thoughts.

            As for the saying, “we all have depression at some point” – that’s WRONG. NO. Everyone gets sad. Yes. A lot of people get minor depressions that can last months and be very debilitating, but they’re usually caused by some trigger (rape, death, loss of job, breakup, failing grades etc.) and can be overcome.

            Actual depressive disorders are with a person for life. They cannot be cured. They can be helped, they can be managed, and I hope most people with them have supportive people around for the times they are difficult (because there are times worse than others, and the best medicine is a loving friend), but many of those people will be on medication for life, and telling them they don’t deserve to be unhappy is a cruel and soulless thing to do.

          • divya April 3, 2014 at 10:27 AM

            thank u for sharing all this but what when a person does have depression ! and no friends and several other serious personal problems! and no one there to support that person! it becomes even harder doesn’t it?

          • Natalie April 7, 2014 at 11:51 PM

            I don’t think you’re in a position to determine what kind of depression Elli had, or whether it was “major” or “minor.”

            The most likely possibility is you really don’t know, and people tell of their experience in different ways.

            In your case, you want your depression to be worse than someone else’s depression. You write about it like it is.

          • Haris Cooper April 9, 2014 at 2:01 AM

            Bloody hell, do you think every single damn story was for the sake of self-validation?

            Hopefully you don’t roll your eyes when someone is telling you something about themselves, as that’s just tragic.

            Oh and I was a pathetic fool in my younger years thinking me being sad was depression, that I felt sorry for myself and that it can’t be within my control but I dealt with it. But I never woke up sad for no reason, I never had pangs of sadness hit me despite there being no situation that would lead to those thoughts.

            As for her story? It was an insight in someone that has had depression, I believe it exists but for you to say she simply intends to one up another. Who are you to thrust upon her that she’s simply attention grabbing? The girl was describing a feeling neither you or me could contemplate, so stop being pathetic.

            Depression does exist, and it isn’t people ‘feeling sad’ it’s something a heck load more serious than that. Feeling sad and people being selfish about it is what you’re taking a dig at, not depression. If anything take shots at society for consistently confusing the two.

          • Natalie April 9, 2014 at 10:19 PM

            Hello Harris, i didn’t dismiss her story. Stories are informing. Read her opening statement:

            “I’m glad that you had a minor depression that could be ‘cured’ by positive thoughts or whatever. Good for you. There IS a difference, though, between a minor depression and a depressive disorder.”

            There is so much about this that isn’t about telling her story.

            I see minimizing another poster’s story and calling for a greater self pity by comparison.

            It is reality, not an insult meant to dismiss her or your experience.

          • Beth Mastrodonato June 14, 2014 at 10:53 AM

            YOU are a creep

          • Colin May 21, 2014 at 7:49 AM

            Yes. This person, who speaks not from experience but from looking at something from the outside, and passing judgment on it, on years of study and research, labored over by actual professionals, with years of education, in one breath. And, as is very typical of someone with sufficient ego to believe that he is qualified to make such judgments without any actual facts or proof or statistical data, or anything but mere conjecture, he is apt to pass such judgments on things he has never experienced himself and in fact is not even a little qualified to make. What he talks about is sadness and being down in the dumps, which is indeed the result of selfish or self-centrered thinking, and NOT real depression. What you describe is what real, clinical depression is like. I have battled it much of my life, and it was never because of circumstantial phenomena. Rather, it was more a crippling lack of energy and motivation, aches and pains and stiffness and muscle cramps – which were not aided by vitamin supplements, exercise, or the other usual treatments – frequent colds, and a feeling of hopelessness, which arose out of this inexplicable and baffling syndrome, which happened to me initially during my teenage years when my life was otherwise quite enjoyable and carefree. It is unfortunate that individuals like this man waste their time spreading ignorant, negative and hurtful or damaging misinformation while talking about “positive thinking.” Worse still, that there are so many people with insufficient education to recognize this man’s lack of expertise and incorrect information, who believe it without any fact-checking whatsoever. No wonder there is so much cruelty and senseless barbarism in the world today.

          • Toma May 21, 2014 at 8:46 AM

            The “so many people with insufficient education” you speak of do what you fail to do. They look within themselves for the truth.

            The cliché of ‘ignorance is bliss’ exists for a reason. Those with less mind are free from its trappings, and depression is one of them.

          • A Fellow Human Being October 20, 2013 at 11:52 PM

            Thank you. I am clinically depressed. It’s not something I can control with positive thinking or sheer will power. It’s a chemical deficiency in my brain. I am pro-logic and pro-science.

            I understand that for people who do not suffer from clinical depression it can seem like it’s something you can control, but that’s…just not the case.

            I am not being selfish. If there’s anyone to blame for my condition, it’s God because this is how he created me. My brain does not produce enough serotonin as people who are not clinically depressed. This is neither my fault or my responsibility to fix without help.

          • Christin November 7, 2013 at 9:23 AM

            It’s certainly not your fault, but your actions do have an effect on how well your brain deals with the inadequate levels of neurotransmitters. For example, 10 minutes bursts of exercise can help relieve symptoms temporarily, and help you manage reoccurring episodes. Despite the unsubstantiated nonsense purported by the author of this blog, you do have some power to help yourself get better. Sure, it’s hard, and it might be impossible to do alone, depending on the severity of your condition. But as someone who has been where you are, and like you, is pro-science and pro-logic, I can tell you, it can and does get better. With a lot of work, sure, but sometimes that work feels good, just to be making progress. Hang in there, and stop reading completely unscientific crap like this blog. This is a much better source of helpful info:
            http://www.helpguide.org/mental/depression_tips.htm I refer to it a lot, especially when I get triggered into another episode.

          • Wendy November 11, 2013 at 10:00 AM

            It does not get better for everyone. I lived so much of my life with pain and aggravation, till finally I went to see my doctor. I discovered what I wasn’t/was feeling was called “Major Depressive Disorder. I am far from selfish. I have always been a giving person. I always kept to myself. Never said a negative word to anyone. But after going thru treatment, I can function. But if I were to stop my meds, I would be thrown back into the lions den. You know you cannot see a heart attack, yet you have one. The author is one of those people who thinks the world is flat, because he can’t see beyond the horizon.

          • john December 6, 2013 at 2:13 AM

            and you think because there are zero actual studies providing evidence of depression being a chemical imbalance, that because your doctor told you its a metnal illness that you believe it. the meds dont cure depression, they are just mood altering drugs, go smoke pot i bet it has about the same effect. it really is in your head. just because you are a giving person doesn’t mean your not selfish. maybe it means you are just acting against your will to give to others so you look better in society, when in all reality all you want is to have everything for yourself. i have been “clinically depressed” and all the pills in the world didn’t help me at all. until i started living a better life and not thinking about what i want all the time, nothing changed.

          • newzbug December 6, 2013 at 11:41 AM

            Of course there is no cure. It is just treating the symptoms. I could have all the best and right answers John and still you will believe what you want to believe. My problem is that I cannot stop myself from giving in to my symptoms so I take meds. Yes it is real and I have the same you do. There is not a “cure”. I knew that a long time ago. Geeze if I really cared about what society thought of me, I wouldn’t have done all the things I have that “seem” to imply I am acceptable. I am glad you found help with changing your life. This is what works for me. It doesn’t matter what i say, you will think Toma is perfectly right and you are anti-med. All meds change you … either your body or your mind. At least I don’t tell people how horrible they are …

          • Mala January 26, 2014 at 1:08 PM

            Keeping to yourself is incredibly selfish. You were put on this earth to give of yourself. Same goes with not saying anything negative to people. Apathy and indifference stem from disinterest and self-centeredness.

            I myself have recently been “diagnosed,” (again. I spent most of my teens on Effexor) and I refused to accept their life-sentence. An attitude of gratitude goes a long way. I’m not cured by a long shot, but everyday I am stronger and more positive. You can do it! You just have to set your mind to it and deny the bullshit. No one is saying it’s easy. It took me 28 years to get to this point in my life, obviously it’s not going to be resolved overnight.

          • divya April 3, 2014 at 10:51 AM

            the point here is mala …that while the person is trying to get over depression ….he IS trying and while that time he or she cannot be claimed as selfish! it took u 28 years … long time and someone if at that point of time just called u selfish would be completely wrong and yes u would have felt bad ! there are people too who after trying allot to get over such disorders can’t get over it…u again cannot call them selfish..they tried! and then there are people who go through this problem and try to get themselves back on the track but are week and every time they get a lil better…something bad happens and they get back to the same place! not everybody’s life is the same and not every person is strong enough and can handle life problems the same way as the other person does! not every persons life is good ! some have bad lives and some have worse and some even worse! no one person can tell the other person that he’s selfish until and unless he’s gone through the exact same problem as the other one ! i’m not calling anyone wrong here…obviously everyone is diff. and has diff. opinions about everything! all i’m asking for is to look at the problem with a little more sensitivity maybe? just like everyone has diff. opinions ..the same way every person is diff. and has a diff. life! if you’ve not been there all your life going through the exact same things/problems they have …u cannot make statements and call them selfish as u yourself don’t know how u would become/reacted to all that after going through everything that they’ve been through! sure u can say u would have been just fine and handled it and would have been completely normal and “NOT SELFISH” and stuff but u never really know until n unless you’ve been there!

          • Newzbug November 21, 2013 at 2:48 PM

            Christin, the thing most people don’t seem to get is one of the symptoms of MDD is that you have little or no energy to get yourself up to exercise or eat right. That is why a strong support system is so important. Quite often you have very little control over getting better. I have severe MDD. For me everything is a struggle. So I am forced to take my life moment by moment or day by day. YES, I have attempted suicide … if anythiing it is a selfless act. My family or friends refuse to be a part of my healing, so they become unimportant to me. And my attempts were to lessen their so called pain with me. My pain has been lifelong. Theirs isn’t really there for me, but for themselves.

          • Laura January 17, 2014 at 8:20 AM

            Ahhh thank you, someone that explained that depression can be cured without saying thats selfish. Really thank you.

          • Katie November 26, 2013 at 1:49 PM

            I am also clinically depressed and I am only a child. I am not selfish. I hurt myself so I wouldn’t hurt the people around me. I feel so angry and insecure all the time and nobody helps me. They watch. I feel so lonely even though I have friends and scared. And I have blamed God a lot for my problems. I wake up crying and screaming and there is just no joy or anyone who cares about and helps me. I am not selfish.

          • lisa April 28, 2014 at 12:02 PM

            some people on this site are just plain stupid , untill they walk in our shoes, they should pretty much shut the hell up and stop putting us down

          • Daniel October 24, 2013 at 2:22 PM

            No it’s not an illness and it’s been proven it’s all in the head

          • hannah October 27, 2013 at 3:49 PM

            HAHA OF COURSE IT’S IN THE HEAD.. IT’S A MENTAL ILLNESS. where did you think it would be found? the kidneys?

          • liz November 29, 2013 at 1:35 PM

            lol

          • alice December 15, 2013 at 12:28 PM

            Lmao

          • Alex Powell October 29, 2013 at 5:23 PM

            You obviously don’t understand what real depression is….its a lack of a certain chemical in the brain, to explain it vaguely. but it is VERY real and my mother is clinically depressed. so wheres your “proof” that its not real?

          • Wendy November 11, 2013 at 12:02 PM

            Daniel, who has proven it’s not an illness? Have you ever had serious depression? If not, then you cannot talk about my experiences being phony.

          • Natalie March 15, 2014 at 8:38 AM

            I believe he has the natural-born right to say what he wants, even if you don’t approve!

          • Alex April 1, 2014 at 11:20 AM

            He is entitled to his wrong opinions.

          • Natalie April 9, 2014 at 10:21 PM

            Opinions aren’t right or wrong. They are.

          • Jonathan Gray April 12, 2014 at 10:36 PM

            Indeed. Just like the man on the corner ranting about alien invasions and goat-people running the government.

            You can say what you like. Others will think you are an imbecile.

            Please keep saying what you like. It gives others all the warning they need as to the kind of person you are.

          • Natalie April 13, 2014 at 10:30 AM

            I see. Gaslighting me now, huh. I guess you can always compare something that upsets you to aliens if you really want to take it there.

            I’m that big of a threat that people need warnings? …wow

          • Katie January 12, 2014 at 11:02 AM

            Because were not the kind of people who smile after we get punched in the face? Because were not the kind of people who think about what they’ll eat for dinner and when a tv show is coming on? It was people like you who did all this to me and I don’t think I can ever forgive them.Do you have any idea what its like to suffer from autism, then pdd-nos, then finally when you are ‘normal’ again you feel like you aren’t, then have tons of mental problems, thinking that everything is a trap and everyone iting to torture me and only me, then hoping school will be a great hiding place from those cold, dark feelings that haunt me, then realizing they will always be there, you have only people pretending to be your friends and completely neglecting you, but you don’t want to admit you are a loner, especially when you feel lonely enough, then feeling like a useless retarded freak and finding nothing to be ‘happy’ about, becoming depressed when you don’t even know what depression even is yet, then finding out when its way too late to change it, hoping that a move to New York will hep but all of that crushed when you figure out that it will never go away, going from the worlds best school to the worlds worst school, filled with boring lifeless people who love to ignore every REAL problem, then the greatest part of all this is it will never end and nobody will ever care about me or help me! People like you think that full of life means ‘happiness’ meanwhile I think being full of life is knowing what life actually is. I dont believe in happiness. I think that as crazy as it sounds you can enjoy feeling any emotion and that happiness is just enjoying being satisfied but joy is real. Thats the only thing I want. I really just want someone to help me. Is that too much to ask?

          • Heather L. January 16, 2014 at 2:26 PM

            Hi Katie,

            You sound like my life story. I am in my 30’s now, but my childhood sounds something like yours. I have autism, and now depression. I didn’t get help until my late twenties. I was told all of my life that I was “evil” or “demonic.” When I was a child, nobody realized that autism is a spectrum disorder. I had many of the key symptoms, but slipped through the cracks, because I was verbal and somewhat social.

            Please get off of this website. Most of the people here are no help to you, as I can surmise by the hurtful and ignorant comments. What is truly disgusting is that they are knowingly saying these things to someone who has clearly stated “I am only a child” ~ taken from your “November 26, 2013 at 1:49 PM” post.

            As for getting help, it depends on what country you live in. I am from Canada, and there are programs for people with autism, and the sorrows that follow it (such as depression) available to all Canadians. If you live somewhere else (most likely, you do), I can post some sites and books that were helpful to me (I will do this a little later, after I get some sleep – it’s the middle of the night where I am). Mind you, my suggestions are no replacement for someone with an MD, nor do I claim they are.

            I am a Christian, and I will do one thing I know will help (to what extent, and what kind of help, I don’t know). I will pray for you daily. I know there is a tendency to blame God. I struggle with that too. Everyone who has suffered has probably fallen victim to that, even if they do not say it out loud. One thing I know for sure is that God understands, and He is touched by your suffering. Autism is not your fault, nor is depression. You and I were created different from the rest of the world, and the world, for the most part, is not very understanding.

            As I noted from all of your posts, you express yourself very well, and you come across as being extremely intelligent, which is more than I can say for a good portion of the other contributors.

            I don’t know if any of this is helpful, but just know that I care about you, and you will be in my thoughts and prayers.

            Love,

            Heather

          • Aron January 16, 2014 at 6:23 PM

            No, you are not depressed, you can’t be because depression isn’t real, it’s just an EXCUSE for you to get out of things. Get a grip and stop feeling sorry for yourself then you’ll *magically* stop being “depressed”.

          • Bob February 12, 2014 at 12:21 PM

            Aron, I used to be like you. I used to say how depression was nonsense and did not exist, and that there was no proof, etc.

            Well guess what; now I suffer from depression. And believe me, it is no laughing matter, and you better hope that you don’t come down with it because it can make your life a living hell. Your life can be going well, but for some reason you’re experiencing a myriad of scary emotions for no logical reason at all.

            Until you’ve experienced it, you have no idea what you’re talking about, so shut the fuck up.

          • Toma February 12, 2014 at 12:22 PM

            Tell that to your therapist.

          • Toma February 26, 2014 at 1:38 PM

            This was very much why I wrote the article “Overcoming the mind that is overcoming you.” We start to get sucked into a vacuum of negative thinking, and often without knowing it. If we don’t fight it, then we fall deeper into it. We are not unique or special in the way we think. It can happen to any of us, but it’s up to us to fight it, not simply dismiss it as ‘mental illness’. It’s like an alcoholic saying, “Fuck it! I’m an alcoholic, and that’s been declared an illness”, then, in a blasé tone saying, “What can you do.” You think he will ever get better?

            http://www.tomahaiku.com/overcoming-mind/

          • mr February 16, 2014 at 6:09 PM

            Well, aren’t you a fucking idiot.

          • Natalie April 9, 2014 at 10:22 PM

            Nice rebuttal.

          • Beth Mastrodonato June 14, 2014 at 10:54 AM

            love it

          • divya April 3, 2014 at 11:01 AM

            you’ve sure gone or still going through a hell lot! i know what it feels like when the so called friends around are fake and just users and no one in the family understands u! i’m always there for people who’ve been through crap in life like i have and i’m there for you too! u are obviously not alone! yes i literally can’t be there but i’m there to help! :) and so will few other people going through somewhat the kind of problems your going through will be there! stay strong!

          • Dan H November 12, 2013 at 1:58 AM

            Yo simply missed the mark, so called ‘depression is a choice. How we deal, react and suppress guilt (sin), and worry in our lives thus causes thee chemical reactions in our created bodies.
            instead of properly dealing with our ‘self’ and keep ourselves in check morally both in personal character and public actions parasites as the
            Pharmaceutical companies and the darn psychology manipulators bring their false solutions and prey on peoples ignorance,.

          • zapdmom November 12, 2013 at 10:17 AM

            When people tell me that “depression is a choice” I get they are wanting me to be dead. So why don’t you come out with a rifle and just shoot everyone with that choice inspired depression.

          • Newzbug November 21, 2013 at 2:51 PM

            If it’s a choice, then why do I give a $%^^ what my family or friends think? If it weren’t for meds I would already be DEAD. I no more blame the doctors/pharm companies for my illness than I blame them for my heart problems. But I suppose I made a choice to have high blood pressure. I will have to remember that from now on.

          • Amazon November 23, 2013 at 9:06 AM

            Dan – you have no effing idea what you are talking about. You are part of the problem for those of us who suffer from depression. Go hurt someone else and leave sick people alone. What a total jackass. And that goes for the person who wrote this so-called article, too.

          • Allisom November 23, 2013 at 10:43 PM

            Right on my bro! :D

          • Sarah November 23, 2013 at 10:48 AM

            Anything can be called an “illness”, over eating, sex addiction, the list goes on. I think it’s just an excuse for people to not act the right way so they keep doing what they do or think the way they do and say “oh im this way be because i have an illness. Im sorry but i think you’re just taking this to heart because you say you have an “illness” with depression. This article wasn’t stupid, it was just not tip toeing around peoples feelings.

          • ted norton November 23, 2013 at 11:22 AM

            Sarah get your head out of your ass and do a little research. And Emily, Sarah is not worth the value of your time.

            http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/depression/DS00175

          • ted norton November 23, 2013 at 11:35 AM

            ( I mean Emma. Sorry)

          • Sarah November 24, 2013 at 3:16 AM

            Oh goodness. My head isn’t up my ass. I just have my own thoughts and views of things. That’s all. I express my opinion and of course people get hurt over it, never intended to make anyone mad. Can’t there just be a simple debate with opinion and no insults?

          • ted norton November 24, 2013 at 3:53 AM

            An opinion should be informed. With the entire worldwide medical community having acknowledged depressive disorders as illnesses, featuring not only mental but physical symptoms and chronic features, you somehow have information that is better than their dedicated research ? I meant no insult. I was just remarking on your state of ignorance as frankly as possible.

          • newzbug November 24, 2013 at 8:09 AM

            Anytime ANYONE expresses their opinion, someone is going to disagree. People who are “hurt” by it must have some underlyiing things going on to be hurt so easily by opinion.

          • Ted Norton November 25, 2013 at 5:29 AM

            Ignorance is NOT opinion. Period. And YES people are hurt because they suffer from a condition that is being misrepresented and deliberately misunderstood by others who have no idea how much PAIN is involved. I will resist the urge to put any of you in great pain and then have others mock your condition by telling you it’s only your weak character causing the pain. It’s inhumane to speak the way you do of something you obviously have never experienced.

          • newzbug November 26, 2013 at 2:30 AM

            Ted Norton, I have been living with severe MDD for a long time now. I only recently had spent a week in a local psych hospital. I put myself there because “I was afraid of me”. I know that sounds odd, but I didn’t know how much longer I could resist the urge to kill myself. So tell me TomaHaiku, do you think I am selfish for wanting to not only end MY pain, but the pain of others who consistently ridicule, belittle and are cruel to ME, because my illness “doesn’t exist”. I am cursed to always hear those people in my head over and over. While you can merely wish your discomforts away. So now who do you think think is being selfish?!!!

          • Natalie April 9, 2014 at 10:26 PM

            The basis on which you call commenters and the author ignorant is unfounded.

            The rule is that you must be heard out, supported and validated, or the other party, however reserved and tactful, is pitted against you as an ignoramus.

            I think the hope of an open exchange of thoughts and opinions is lost here.

          • mandilouwho? December 19, 2013 at 9:54 AM

            Duh yeah someone is offended because ignorant people write ignorant comments not knowing at all what they are talking about on people that do know because they have experienced it. Yes addictions and mental illnesses are getting brought to light now and yes God can cure but where is he? Everyone with an illness does not have the mind to beg for help and when you have major depression like me as someone else already stated you don’t have energy to even get up and start to do things and I do exercise and eat right everyday and on my good days really can feel OK but its still a struggle to do anything and I wouldnt wish it on anyone.

          • Jonathan Gray April 12, 2014 at 10:40 PM

            So you express an opinion when you know it will hurt someone? If you do this, then you INTEND to hurt, because you could simply keep your big mouth shut. This is the behaviour of a child.

            As you get older, you come to realise your goddamn opinions are of very little consequence. Keep your mouth shut, no-one cares what you think, and no-one needs to hear them. Your desire to express them is of no consequence either.

            I’ll take the opinions of medical professionals, not self-entitled morons like you.

          • Natalie April 13, 2014 at 10:32 AM

            Yet you can call people morons and children? When the same insults were not dealt to you.

            Please stop manufacturing insult and then we can begin to talk and understand.

          • Arby April 13, 2014 at 11:35 AM

            I don’t follow your thinking. Toma is not in ear-shot of you. This is his blog; you came to visit. Why would he shut his month about his opinion when he created this site to share his ideas with those inclined to read them.

            I understand disagreeing with his ideas/opinion/POV, but disagreeing with his right to post them. Illogical.

          • Mr Cellophane November 23, 2013 at 11:22 AM

            Sarah, let’s clear something up. ALL THAT MENTAL ILLNESSES ARE is an extreme at one end of a spectrum of behaviors, where “normal” is some range closer to the middle. So yes, there is a normal range of binge eating as well as a less normal range.

            Mental disorders are characterized by 3 things: Deviance from the norm (what I stated above), Dysfunction (that the behaviors are getting in the way of functional daily life), and Distress (that the person is unhappy with the behavior). All 3 of these things lie on a spectrum.

            There is no exact line on the spectrum where one set of behaviors qualifies as an “illness” and another qualifies as “normal.”

            Before you get your panties in a wad, let me clarify: Yes, there are specific diagnostic criteria for mental illnesses. However, labels have been invented and assigned to certain sets of behaviors for the purpose of making things easier to treat, NOT for the purpose of giving excuses. Researchers said, “Hey, there are all these people who have a lot of these same problems. And they all seem to have something similar going on in their biology and/or medical history and/or childhood and/or life stressors. And, MOST IMPORTANTLY, they all seem to show some improvement when we try treatments X, Y, and Z. Let’s put a label on them!”

            If someone can look at themselves and realize they are having similar problems as that certain labelled group, it’s a hell of a lot more useful in changing those problems than if they had no idea what’s wrong with them. THAT, Sarah, is the purpose of calling something an illness. Fuck, that’s the entire purpose of the field of psychiatry.

            If someone acts like an asshole and knows it, says they can’t help it because of a disorder, and has absolutely no interest in changing these behaviors, then they’re just an asshole. They may or may not actually meet the criteria of a certain disorder, but that’s irrelevant to being an asshole.

          • ted norton November 23, 2013 at 11:28 AM

            Maybe ignorance isn’t an illness, but there is a sure fire treatment for it nonetheless. thanks Mr. Cellophane.

          • newzbug November 23, 2013 at 1:01 PM

            I just can’t figure out where these “stupid” people came from. They try to enforce their beliefs on others. Try to tell others their illness doesn’t exist. Well, if my illness doesn’t exist, neither does your headache. Or your sore back or your high blood pressure. You just make it up to get out of working, or going to a relatives house. I am so sick of this. Some people will never change and the guy who wrote this article is one of them. They talk about having an open mind when in fact they have already made up their minds. F#CK YOU Sara and Toma…that is about the only phrase you will ever understand. I feel so sorry for your families.

          • Bob February 12, 2014 at 12:29 PM

            Amen, brother! I don’t get where these assholes come off making statements like this from things they have NEVER experienced. It’s amazing that they HONESTLY believe their bullshit, that they are somehow superior because they choose to be more positive than people who suffer from depression. I smell some nasty narcissism at work here…

          • Natalie April 9, 2014 at 10:29 PM

            It is disheartening to see yor extreme reaction to another neutral opinion. It seems unbearable to so many when they sense less than free-flowing sympathy.

          • newzbug November 24, 2013 at 4:00 AM

            Do you know anyone with a serious depressive illness? Family, friends? Do you tell them that their depression isn’t real? You better get to it. You have a lot of people to inform of your “intelligent” discovery….NOT

          • ted norton November 25, 2013 at 5:40 AM

            EXACTLY. WHY HANG OUT IN A BLOG SPREADING IGNORANCE WHEN YOU CAN JUST GO STRAIGHT UP TO REAL HUMANS AND OFFEND THEM IN PERSON WITH IGNORANCE AND INHUMANE JUDGEMENTS. I stand by everything I say on this page and I would say to anyone in person and I know it would not worsen their condition or make them more self loathing nor would it close doors to further, more effective treatment and the simple comfort that other human beings actually CARE what they are going through.

          • Natalie April 9, 2014 at 10:30 PM

            Then go check out a support forum, Ted Norton. That’s the best place to go for caring support.

          • Lisa December 2, 2013 at 12:26 PM

            Do some research and then tell us how you feel. You honestly don’t know a damn thing you’re talking about.

          • Ray December 16, 2013 at 10:17 AM

            WHY CAN ANY ORGAN GET SICK, AND START AFFECTING THE REST OF THE BODY IN DIFFERENT WAYS, BUT APPARENTLY NOT THE BRAIN?
            Tell me, why is it that people seem to be able to accept that any organ in your body get sick, and yet, as soon as someone mentions a mental illness, people tell us that “It’s all in your head. It’s not real. Get over it. You’re selfish.” Why is it that people can accept that any organ in your body can get sick… but not the brain? Is the brain not an organ? Is it not a part of your body? Please explain to me why you feel justified in telling a person with a mental illness that, not only is their suffering “not an illness” but that it is their fault? Are you going to go tell a person with leukemia that it’s their fault that they have an abnormal increase of immature white blood cells, and that they should just get over it, and stop being so selfish? No? Then why in the world would you go around telling people with mental illnesses that they should just get over their chemical imbalance in their brain? That it’s their fault that their neurones work in such a way as that it affects their behaviour?
            WHY CAN ANY ORGAN GET SICK, AND START AFFECTING THE REST OF THE BODY IN DIFFERENT WAYS, BUT APPARENTLY NOT THE BRAIN?

          • Estaban Haroon December 16, 2013 at 10:49 AM

            Are you seriously comparing cancer to depression?
            How spoiled and self-absorbed does a person have to be to compare involuntary, brutal death to “I CANT HANDLE THIS MUNDANE PAIN THAT IM TOO STUPID TO DEAL WITH SO IM ENDING MY LIFE”. When people are actually sick with diseases they actually have no power on they tend to fight and deny their illness, so why is it that people with depression so desperately cling to the fact that depression is an illness? Why is it that a dying 40 year old man will deny that his heart is weak and attempt to carry on with his life while a 24 year old whines about how his/her illness, is in fact, an illness. It’s the fact that you continue to cling to anything that says that you have no power over yourself makes your illness less valid.

          • Laura January 1, 2014 at 2:26 PM

            Yeah, right. The thing I can’t handle right now is your stupidity. Depressed people are just stupid, thus kill themselves. What an intelligent statement to make.
            How about this: If you have no idea what you’re talking about, just shut up.

            Lots of people die of cancer, lots of people dealing with severe depression end up taking their own lifes. Now tell me, where’s the difference? Why is it “better” to die of cancer?

          • Estaban Haroon January 1, 2014 at 2:50 PM

            It’s that mentality right there. The way you worded it. “Why is it “BETTER” to die of cancer.”. I don’t even know where to begin in explaining how horribly wrong a statement that is to make. But let me tell you why it is more VALID to die of cancer than it is to die of depression. Because the difference between dying of cancer and dying of depression is the difference between dying of a common cold just because you didn’t want to wear a sweater and being stabbed in the face.

            People with depression are dumb and that’s why they kill themselves, yes. You are human. You have the most intricate and powerful brain known to exist. The strongest thing in the known universe and what do you use it for? Destroying your own self internally because you’re too stubborn and stupid to let go of a shitty mentality. If you ask me that is not only dumb but pathetic.

          • Anonymous January 9, 2014 at 10:23 AM

            Your statement that people who suffer from depression are dumb is a sweeping generalization and is therefore invalid. There are many studies, including a large one in 2012 with over one million participants, that have actually found that high IQ and creativity are linked with mental illnesses, such as depression, anorexia nervosa, and schizophrenia. The DARPPA-32 gene is a primary suspect in this link. This is not to say that all people suffering from mental illnesses are brilliant because there are many factors contributing to mental illness, however you cannot accurately say that all people with depression are unintelligent.

          • Estaban Haroon January 10, 2014 at 4:03 PM

            First of all, as you said, IQ doesn’t necessarily mean anything. Maybe people with a high IQ just have a tendency to get into a redundant infinite loop up their own asses, I don’t know. I just like to use the term dumb because, really, depression is the only kind of thing you can really refer to as dumb. If someone is having learning issues then they’re just not adept in that field, but if someone wants to kill themselves because they’re so far up their own asses that they won’t see the outside then I think that qualifies them as dumb regardless of how “intelligent” they may be. I also like to use the term dumb because most people with depression need to see the flaw in their mentality and I feel like dumb is an adequate term to convey that.

            There are, obviously, people who are just born with a chemical imbalance that makes it more likely for them to have depressed thoughts and those people are influenced from birth to think like that and can’t really be blamed. But the vast majority of people with depression at this day and age brought depression upon themselves and those are the people that I refer to as dumb.

          • troubled21yearold January 30, 2014 at 4:17 PM

            When I was younger I always wondered how depression manifested itself. How I was seemingly happy and though I had a less than perfect life. I enjoyed life and thought everything about it was beautiful. The ability to feel pleasure, pain, emphathy, understanding was mystifyingly perfect. I sought to understand the universe and studied physics, philosophy and psychology. After a combination of very devastating experiences including PTSD I delved into a state that had stripped me of my ability to be happy. I could not find the energy or desire to get off my bed, and realized the illusory state of the human mind. What meaning do our finite existence in all of space time hold? Perhaps some of this was outside the scope of normal people that only care about Miley Cyrus or Justin Bieber’s new scandals. I realized that I needed and desperately wanted to feel happy again. I changed my lifestyle to exercising 6 days a week, was more involved in social gatherings, and was very successful in the science community. Yet despite, these efforts something was still off. I was not my old self. I could not enjoy the simple pleasures of life and felt guilty for feeling this way when there were people worse off. The last three years of my life have been actively spent trying desperately to be happy, think positive thoughts, love others, learn the philosophy of great philosophers about happiness, and dwelling on various religions and they’re interpretations. It did feel better than staying in my bed all day (albeit it was difficult to find the energy to change my lifestyle around especially for a depressed individual). However, I still deal with obstacles of anxiety, emptiness, lack of motivation and energy. I try harder to be happy than most yet come short of theirs. I have hope that one day I’ll be able to feel and live the life that I once felt even in it’s most imperfect state. However, I have ever told anyone I was depressed. I only recently found out and it makes sense and gives me hope that with help of medication I can begin to enjoy life again. I realize now what the condition feels like, and I can assure you I did not choose it. If you felt this way, you would really understand the complexities of the illnesss. There is much to be learned by both sides of the argument: 1. depression is not a choice or a way to victtimize oneself in an attempt for attention. It is real and a great epidemic in the western world. 2. The western world has a lifestyle that does not suit us or our health and there are certain steps that we must take to help our illness. Ignorance and intolerance has always been the basis for the atocities of mankind, and if we are to keep those traits mankind will never progress.

          • Toma January 30, 2014 at 4:21 PM

            You should read a book called Zen Mind, Beginner’s Mind.

          • Estaban Haroon February 4, 2014 at 11:15 AM

            You can try all you want but it wont happen unless you truly want it and truly believe that you can achieve it. YOU are the element that needs to be changed here. It’s not an extension of you that’s fucking you up, it’s not everyone else it’s your very core. Your core mentality is shit. Sure, sometimes your core can be influenced by the outside, sometimes people around you can be happy and you get happy too. But ultimately the only person that truly has the choice to change their core is you and you don’t want to because it’s too difficult or too different or whatever the fuck. So you go out and try to do things in hopes that maybe you maybe influenced by the outside rather than influencing your own damn self which is what most psychiatrists would have their patients do because they know all their patients are lazy pieces of shit. I admire the effort. Your situation is infinitely more valid than most of the other depressed people that don’t even have half a mind to change. And I think you might really be ‘cured’ this way. But my point still stands.

            If we say the depression is out of our control we regress. We progress by having a better understanding and control of ourselves and by excerpting the colossal power of our brains that separates us from the animals.

          • Tealessence February 6, 2014 at 5:04 PM

            So, I suffer from MDD along with various other diagnoses, and have attempted suicide multiple times. I must be stupid, right? Then why do I have an IQ of 142? I’d wager your IQ is about… negative 40.

          • Toma February 6, 2014 at 5:35 PM

            Our minds create so much noise, even more so with higher intelligence. It has nothing to do with stupidity.

          • Natalie April 9, 2014 at 10:31 PM

            Putting words in someone’s mouth: a reliable way to get yourself angry every time.

          • Adelissa March 22, 2014 at 1:18 PM

            I have had cancer, I have had anxiety and major depression. I would take physical suffering over mental suffering any day. I truly hope all of you with the opinion that we are just weak selfish people who don’t want to get better never say things like that to a depressed family member. And frankly, I don’t care what you believe, if you can’t put kindness and compassion first.

          • De'Anna March 23, 2014 at 3:08 PM

            Now let’s say all this medical technology didn’t exist. People got sick and it would just be so strange and curious how a person could suddenly change. They would cough blood, faint, or just die. People would be accused of not being helpful and probably even killed on spot when people start getting contagious. Now let’s compare ‘that’ to ‘this’. See much difference? We don’t have the technology to PROVE that depression is just a feeling. Or the other way around. We can’t even PROVE it’s in the head. All we have to cling on is seriously painful migraines, emotional changes, and feeling slow. We can’t find anything with the technology we have, and we have no idea how to advance it. Every depressed person in this world isn’t suicidal, and most aren’t spoiled. If you had depression you would know the suicide is more in the head than it is attempted. You lose sanity, freak out, and start to only see the fucked up parts of life (drugs, abuse, pessimism, etc). If you have ever seen Eeyore from Winnie the pooh then take him, max his slowness and pessimism by ten, stick him in u.s.a, and paint the whole world in gray scale. If you actually try to see it then maybe you can understand how scary it is. Not to mention depression DOES have physical problems involved as well. Depression can run in families just like cancer…just like any illness. I can also tell you most suicides in america don’t come from depression, but anxiety. If you want to someone call names learn support yourself with some REAL information and not just your ‘human instinct’. Because if you haven’t noticed yet it’s that ‘human instinct’ that’s killing this world.
            I survived cancer. I have depression. I’m still alive, and I approve this message.

          • Estaban November 30, 2013 at 2:32 PM

            If depression was simply an illness that was just “there”, regardless of the person, then why is it more common in people who have shitty pasts and a history of being abused.

          • Kylie December 1, 2013 at 12:47 PM

            Ever heard of neuroplasticity? Events can change brain structure and chemistry.Would you say someone who had a heart attack did not have an illness while many with heart problems have it because of past behaviors and events? More people need to think before they speak.

          • Estaban December 1, 2013 at 3:23 PM

            I didn’t deny that it was an illness, I denied that it was just “there”. People with heart attacks tend to be people with shitty dietary choices. The same way people with depression tend to be people with shitty mental choices. Just because it’s an illness it doesn’t mean you had no hand it and it doesn’t mean that it’s “out of your power” to do anything about it and it certainly doesn’t mean that you should start romanticizing it and treating as anything more than a shitty way of thinking that you, by your own standards, shouldn’t be engaged in.

          • Gwen December 9, 2013 at 2:04 PM

            You are possibly the biggest idiot I have ever encountered on the internet. First you say that depression tends to be more prevalent in people who have a history of being abused…and then you say that “people with depression tend to be people with SHITTY MENTAL CHOICES” so a person who was abused as a child chose to be abused?? You really need to re-read what you say before you submit it. I am giving you the benefit of the doubt and assuming that you didn’t mean to word that the way you did…no person can be this moronic. Also, I can assure you that there are people in this world who had great childhoods/lives and suffer from depression and other mental illnesses. Do you also think that schizophrenia is a choice? It is so easy to google these (and many other) topics in this day and age…do some damn research.

          • Estaban December 9, 2013 at 3:03 PM

            I’m sorry I assumed people had the common sense to see how the two statements do not contradict each other. Depression is more common with people that have had a history of abuse, yes. Depression is a result of a “shitty mentality”, yes. What I was saying was, depression is a result of dealing with tragedy or general negativity in a dumb way. Depression is more common in people who have been abused as children because kids are dumb and are more likely to deal with the negativity incorrectly and stick with that mentality but ultimately it is still their choice to have thought that way. People with perfectly normal childhoods can also develop depression if they so choose to deal with pain in a demented way. If people with depression begin to recognize that they are creatures of free will and that they are responsible for the person they are, they can also begin to recognize that they can choose to be someone different using that very same free will. It becomes more and more difficult as you grow up and that shitty way of thought becomes a part of you and your brain begins to physically reflect it but it’s not at all impossible.

          • Nando December 9, 2013 at 4:20 PM

            TOMA I dont know why you even have this blog. You should immediatley deactivate this blog. I dont believe free will has anything do doo with mental illness. Oh and by the way people that have hart attacks are not because they have poor nutrition or choose unhealthy diatery choices. I dont know why you dont do your reasearch. And really you should leave out religion. I am very happy for you that you dont suffer mental illness. And I am quite surprised, because you come across as being a very caring and intelligent human being. Because if you didnt care you would not of put up this blog. I base mental illness on scientific research and facts. Religion on the other hand regarding free will should be left out of the equation dont you?

          • Jay December 17, 2013 at 6:10 AM

            children are dumb and more likely to deal with abuse in an “incorrect” way??? Did you seriously say that? There is no right or wrong way to deal with trauma. Let’s beat, belittle, deprive, starve, rape, and yell at you and see how “correctly” you handle it. Since you’re so smart.

          • Estaban December 17, 2013 at 8:54 AM

            Of course there’s an incorrect way to deal with pain. I’m not completely sure as to how I specifically would deal with intense negative emotions but I know that there is definitely a wrong way of going about it. If a kid cut themselves as a method of coping with rape could you possibly think that their method of dealing with the pain is not “incorrect” but simply “different”.

          • Rawbert December 31, 2013 at 9:58 AM

            Let me just chime in here. I have read a lot of the reply’s on this site and have to agree that everyone has a valid point as to their own perspective. But the truth is there and stated many times. Depression is a serious “malfunction” of the brain. I am an individual that strongly believes that depression is something that an individual can beat. I have had bouts of depression….and I have overcome those bouts by first looking at how I see things. (perspective) I have a sister that was diagnosed with Severe Depression. She was medicated for years…and nothing worked. Until I explained to here how to handle the thoughts that created the “malfunction”. There are POC’s and POD’s. There are points of creation and points of destruction. And it is our own responsibility to ourselves to look at our past and recognize those points. That is not an easy task. But it is something that can be obtained. I have an 13 year old daughter who has been diagnosed with depression and put on medication for it. But through thoughtful conversations, she has been able to understand how to recognize these points and eliminate them from her thought process. She is no longer depressed and no longer on meds. So when the individuals state that depression is something that is created in our heads by how we as individuals respond to emotional conflict….they are correct…..with out a doubt!
            I hope that each person that deals with depression, will first look to themselves for the answer to their happiness.

          • Toma December 31, 2013 at 10:11 AM

            … And if they can’t find it within themselves, they can find it in something greater than themselves.

            Beautifully written. Thank you.

          • Anonymous January 9, 2014 at 6:34 PM

            I’m moderately convinced that you are a troll. If not, please try to present an educated opinion as opposed to your obvious current ignorance of neurophysiology and development. I strongly suggest this since you are choosing to put down others. Also, please, for the love of god, stop using the term “dumb”. A few alternative words I believe you could use in place of it (after reading a few of your posts) are illogical, unintelligent, misguided, or self destructive. Thanks.

          • mrt February 16, 2014 at 6:16 PM

            Really? So I chose to be abused by my dad when I was younger?

          • Estaban Haroon February 18, 2014 at 11:35 AM

            No, but you chose to let it dictate the rest of your life.

          • Lee April 5, 2014 at 4:56 AM

            Oh darling, it’s hilariously naive of you to believe this. I find it pretty astounding that you can show that little sympathy. Either you’ve lived an incredibly sheltered and privileged life, or you simply have superhuman abilities to overcome obstacles/ debilitating setbacks in life. Based on the level of your arguments, I’m more inclined to believe that it’s the former. Suffering from abuse in your childhood, especially when one is so impressionable, DEFINITELY leave a mark on the child. I’m not saying it’s impossible to overcome it. Often people do, and that’s great! But it is INCREDIBLY hard. By saying this, not only are you insulting those that are not able to overcome their mental illnesses as a cause of abuse but also disregarding the immense struggle that ALL of them, whether successfully or not, have put into getting back to a normal. Your manner of splitting everything into neat boxes without a sense of its complexities is very worrying.

          • Toma April 7, 2014 at 1:45 PM

            We all have superhuman abilities, and they rest in the human spirit. God is superhuman, and our spirit is a piece of Him. When we tap into it, superhuman things happen. Too many people throughout history have experienced it for it to not be true.

          • RJ April 30, 2014 at 12:37 AM

            Amen.

          • Toma February 26, 2014 at 1:23 PM

            No, and that’s fucked up, but what you do today is a choice.

          • De'Anna March 23, 2014 at 3:15 PM

            Who knows. When you die, maybe you can ask their ancestors. Depression can run in families. Yet, it also just appears based on your emotions.
            But it’s not the only problem that can run in families and appear based on something else.
            There are a lot of problems like that.
            So why can’t it be an illness?

          • Rahul Sharma December 4, 2013 at 6:01 AM

            but im sorry depression is not real , its a kin to a self inflicted wound , for every man depressed with his life there are 200 other people with ridiculously hard lives living happily because they choose to go on with life despite its shortcomings

          • newzbug December 4, 2013 at 7:53 AM

            So tell me, “Doctor”, what is your evidence to support your ridiculous idea?

          • newzbug December 4, 2013 at 7:57 AM

            So Mr. KnowsAll, to whom is “Depression” not related. You response of “a kin” is incorrect as this implies a person being related to another. However if you used the word properly it would be “akin”…ONE WORD.

          • Depressed and trying to heal because I want a happy Life. December 4, 2013 at 10:47 AM

            Every person wants to believe in their opinion so strongly, even if a doctor told them depression was real they still wouldn’t believe it. It’s sad to say that depression isn’t real. It’s really a idiotic thing to say, like any condition it can surface and it can go away. In my opinion Depression is like a addiction, when a person has been down for so long, it’s hard for them to take themselves out without proper help. Many people get depression over a death and they’re so sad that they can died themselves, not die by killing their self with an object, but died from sorrow, now tell me that is not a illness. For someone like myself, I truly believe that depression is all in the head and is an addiction. I know that with proper treatment, like counseling and active to work to redirect thinking into a positive state anyone with depression can get better.

            I can say that depression might start from a selfish place. When I was younger I didn’t understand most things, like know if my mother didn’t show me love that it’s her problem and not mine. I ached so bad for my mother to treat me nice, I always thought she didn’t like me. She would take my money, sell my toys, and not talk to me sometimes. Sometime it seemed she would do those things for my brother and not me. I was only 4 years old thinking like this. (Yes 4 I have a good memory because my past hurts me a lot.) When I was 8 my mother passed and so did my father. My father was the only person I felt love from and it sadden me that he left, that they both left because I still needed my mothers love that I never got. The day my mother died I seen her spirit and it tromtized me for 4 years which caused me to have major anxiety problems. I became timid, needy, and I felt alone, I’ve carried the same feeling with me and I always looked for it in my friends and other family members. However I never could find it within them, so when I was in high school I had a year when everyone sad and very hurtful things to me, so i went into major withdrawal and depression. Years of accumulated stress and sorrow, that;s a lot of work to be done and time to be healed.

            I understand the means of positive thinking and like most people with depression I seek help, but it doesn’t stop me from crashing every six months into a major depression. I could go on for 5 months with a positive mind and do positive things, but eventually i become over whelmed and crash into a depression. I try to keep pushing when i feel my crash is coming along, but then i start to get irritated, restless, sick to my stomach, and eventually violent if I can’t find somewhere to be depressed.

            It’s a sad story and I wish I could stop it, but it take time for people to get over depression and things.First they just have to be willing to understand what their negative thinking is coming from. Once a depressed person has detected that, they be able to control their emotions more. It’s a serious process but it has to start some where.

            ADVICE TO DEPRESS PEOPLE: ALWAYS KEEP IN MIND, YES PEOPLE ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR HURTING YOU, BUT YOU ARE ALSO RESPONSIBLE FOR ALLOWING THEM TO HURT YOU.

          • newzbug December 4, 2013 at 3:44 PM

            Sometimes your refusal to believe in your illness is one of the ways to never get over it at all. Yes, this is an illness in your brain. Mental, if you want. In many ways like you I thought that if I had x number of years with depression it would take the same amount of years to get better. But it doesn’t work that way. The reason meds stop working is simple. When the brain/mind is “sick with depression” for such a long time … you find this “normal” status as OK. But when your body chemistry gets attack with drugs, and all that time, your body is trying to go back to it’s original state. And when it does, or nearly does, that is when your depression/normal state breaks thru the drugs.

            A lot of people will never be convince of another opinion. Especially if they were brought up with that belief. I believe that Toma thinks what he thinks because his mind cannot comprehend it. I suppose if we come up with a good enough analogy then MAYBE it will sink in. But I doubt it. I have better things to do with my life than argue with people.

            I have read enough medical and scientific literature to back up my beliefs. That is all I need.

          • jgrieme91 April 3, 2014 at 9:14 AM

            Dear woefully ignorant author,

            Look, I understand your frustration at depression. It comes from the same root that I have with OCD. People use the terms colloquially. However, the clinical diagnosis while syntactically the same, is not the same semantically.

            “Depression isn’t real.” That is an interesting statement. You see it isn’t real, but that is because an illness is something that is only real to the person experiencing it. Of course we can deduce cancer by building up similar cases, and then it is a real diagnosis. You confuse your language if you say depression is not real. Take a basic class in linguistics then try to comment on language.

          • I Could Be Gumby December 4, 2013 at 1:49 PM

            My god you’re such a blockhead. Those people, that one in every 200 you describe, Rahul, the reason why they cannot get on with their lives is because of the depression. When will you blockheads learn that depression is NOT momentary sadness, but something that envelops your whole. It’s numbness, it’s darkness, its lack of drive and motivation. It’s this thing you want to kill but it seems insurmountable. Depression is a black hole. That is an apt description. It’s pull is so strong that getting out of it feels impossible. And the depressed don’t lack drive and motivation because they are lazy, it is because the mechanisms in the brain that create drive are more or less malfunctioning. They try to get back on their feet but it is VERY VERY difficult.

            Once again, I need to call you a blockhead. Because you are. It is sad knowing that there are people in this world that are so thick.

          • Michele December 18, 2013 at 4:41 PM

            Agreed Emma, Yes. Exactly this. The author sounds very young and naive and ignorant as to what depression actually is and all it entails. I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy. My dance with the black dog is continuous and has nothing to do with whatever is going on in my life. It just is.

          • Manuel December 19, 2013 at 6:40 AM

            If it was so tragic then why do your romanticize it?

          • Amanda December 24, 2013 at 11:16 AM

            word sista ‘

          • Right. December 25, 2013 at 7:30 AM

            Agreed Emma, the author may have a mental understanding a number of others don’t, which makes him look very ignorant, immature, and cold in is relaying of his observation. Certainly by all means does not make him right, and in the way he approach’s it leaves one wondering how such an article could make it to a site about being human and presented as a source of spiritual growth. His perspective ironically shines on gaps and ignorance. It’s interesting too that he talks about the ego being the problem, while at the same time there is so much of his personal egocentricity throughout the article. Now that kind of ego is worse than someone who’s struggling within, and certainly not a positive concept to teach others.. I would suggest to sit down and discuss with someone why they are struggling and present information in a positive, constructive way – don’t tell them they’re just being selfish and that depression is not “real”. LOL Yeah, that explains it all. What a wonderful silver bullet, heck I feel better now too!

          • Carob December 30, 2013 at 6:12 AM

            Agree to the fullest level. Ignorant article written by someone who obviously has never experienced depression. Do you think a mother who’s twinn daughters died at birth is selfish because of depression. Pompous uneducated a$&

          • The cakes December 31, 2013 at 4:44 PM

            I absolutely agree with you Emma! In contrast, I know some of the things that have probably contributed to my depression! The loss of my child, a surgical procedure that left me with broken screws in my neck and I now live in constant pain! Then add an unwanted divorce to that! These are things that one has no control over! A drunk took the life of my baby and almost took my life as well. Then you add to that the physical pain that i now live in and then the unwanted divorce. How is this selfish? It is as though a bar has been set before me and I either clear the bar or I don’t! Well, I am unable to get over the bar and in fact am just about at the point of removing the bar; I have finally relized after years that I can not get over the bar. I have run for so long in an attempt to pretend that these problems will somehow go away but they don’t and they won’t! I have finally admitted to myself that i can not clear this bar! My life will not ever be the same but the real problem is that I can not live like this! I am both physically and mentally tortured on a daily basis! I wish this fool could walk in my shoes for even a year; then write what it is like! I would be willing to wager quite a bit that the paper would read very different than this one! A good example of selfish would be the drunk who got behind the wheel and wagered his life and everyone else’s on the road that night so that he could get to his next destination! My newyears resolution is to not make it to 2014! May god be more forgiving than this man who thinks I am selfish!

          • spectrm312 January 9, 2014 at 8:31 AM

            Absolute bollocks. I was depressed, even suicidal, exactly once. As soon as I realized that my existence impacts others and that others give a damn, it ended and never returned.

            I wonder if you understand evolution enough to understand that if depression ‘just happened’ as some kind of phenotypic expression, natural selection would’ve removed it long ago. There is no science behind depression studies, just conjecture and psychotropic drugs.

            Nothing complicated about it.

          • Science January 25, 2014 at 5:06 AM

            First of all, evolution is not perfect. There are other mental illnesses natural selection should have “gotten rid of”, such as schizophrenia which I highly doubt anyone who’s meant someone with the illness would say they’re “faking it”. Same with Bipolar disorder and bipolar mania where some people have psychosis. Second, evolution happens over a longer period of time to eliminate negative features via natural selection. Longer than homo sapiens have walked the earth. Not to mention, we’re very good at keeping people alive and functional who would have probably been weeded out by natural selection as you claim. I wonder if YOU understand evolution as much as you claim you do. Pick up a book. Take a class in evolutionary biology. Then come back and see if you say the same thing. Or maybe it’s too complicated for you to understand so in your mind you oversimplify it so you can feel intelligent.

          • ange January 23, 2014 at 3:09 PM

            I agree with you Emma I had post partum depression it was so crazy the true feeling of depression I have felt sad or upset about things & thought that was depression but hell no the truth is real depression is a crazy feeing I cant even explain I would actually have visions almost dream like times like I was standing out side my body & coudnt help myself all I could do is watch. don’t ever let people tell you depression isn’t real only a doctor can truly tell you if what your issues are is depression or just feeling a strong down on your self.

          • Toma January 23, 2014 at 3:24 PM

            Standing outside of your body? Kind of like standing in the periphery, staring at your own centre?

            http://www.tomahaiku.com/explaining-god-selflessness-and-the-human-ego-the-centre/

          • divya April 3, 2014 at 11:42 AM

            toma , i’m not going to call u wrong or right! i just want to ask a question to which i need an answer! have u ever experienced depression? and if yes how severe…did u not take any medical help and just used the super powers of ur supernatural brain to heal it? :)

          • colin sanderson February 5, 2014 at 10:11 AM

            I think it it is a poor translation to say selfish, but more in line with buddhist beliefs to say that the ego is a cause of all suffering. But even relief from the suffering by meditation and mindfulness does not take away the slow thinking and the feeling of wading through mud. Its like you have been drugged and you have, its the chemical factory in our own body that has decided by mistake that to feel this way will be of some benefit.

          • sasha February 19, 2014 at 1:09 PM

            this is the dumbest thing i have ever read depression is not something you just get over. what if your depressed because all you do is think of others and try to be happy, understand yourself. never being selfish and always giving while there is always someone taking. what about if your family disowns you for you trying to think for yourself and have your own belief. i think it is an illness and its peoples personality that helps control it. some times everyone cracks at the breaking point no matter what triggered it everything can take a toll after awhile. what if you have been raped and are depressed because it stops you from having control thats not being selfish is it ??

          • Odey February 20, 2014 at 3:35 AM

            I agree with you Emma.. and think this article is very judgmental based on an individualistic philosophy… ive lived most of my life in a poor country and i have been fighting depression since eight years already..it has nothing to do with rich or poor.. it all about circumstances… i cant simply change the way i think about something that i have to live with for the rest of my life.. i’m loosing the joy of my youth because of this and you come tell me .. think positive?? how can you make such a judgement??.. you dont know me or know what ive been through to come tell me that im selfish and just “change the way you think”

          • Dovydas March 12, 2014 at 1:02 AM

            That is nonsense. You are arguing only because you cannot admit being a selfish. No reason.. there is always a reason. My prove to you – think about the example of your SAD day or moment, are you feeling lonely, does everything look meaningless around so you start analysing purpose of life, how to find true love.. Call it depression if you want because you look from your perspective, but when I look at person like this from my point of view – he/she look selfish. I am maybe alone but occupy myself with activity that is interesting so no time for stupid thoughts. Of course it is difficult to force yourself to something when you dont find any internal drive to do it, doesnt please you and doesnt please anyone else. Where should you start then to get out of this whirpool.. My point is that depression is real, because otherwise it would not exist, but important thing is to understand that its existence is only because we made it to exist with our addictive lifestyle, and im talking not about you but about all society where you ended up in. My suggestion is to take some medication if its too hard to deal with it on your own, but dont waste medication, think of them as a quite poisonous rope that helps you step out from deeper levels of that whirpool but if you use that rope just to hold on and not move out of there (like feel good but spend your days in same routine as you had before), eventually its not going to hold you anymore and you will sink even deeper..

          • impossiblegirl April 1, 2014 at 5:47 PM

            Wow, are being lonely, a bit existential or ‘true love’ the only examples of things that could make someone depressed that you can think of?

            How lovely that you’ve had such a beautiful life you can’t even imagine things that could make someone depressed. I suppose a person is still selfish if they’ve lost a baby, or been raped?

            Anyway, there’s a difference between periods of minor depression (which many people get, and which can turn into something more severe) and depressive disorders.

            Minor depression is caused by a trigger and can be overcome (sometimes with therapy and medication, sometimes by exercise, clean eating and support). A depressive disorder is literally caused by synapses in your brain that produce serotonin not communicating. It’s physically impossible to have (or believe) happy thoughts if your brain is producing no serotonin. And it affects your entire body, too, making it impossible to get up or function sometimes.

            SSRIs or SSNRIs, the medications for depression, increase serotonin, but for me, they also lubricate the synapses in my brain that don’t work and make them communicate again. I NEED my medication to even be happy some of the time; if I didn’t have it, that would be impossible.

            It’s not a minor thing that can be cured with positive thinking, it’s a medical condition that stays with someone their whole life (I’ve had mine since about 8 years old, despite having a wonderful family and life up till then). It can go into ‘remission’, and not bother you for months or years, and then turn up again out of nowhere.

            Try having Major Depressive Disorder combined with a Generalised Anxiety Disorder. Then try to tell me the only thing medication will do is worsen the condition.

          • Jeana March 15, 2014 at 4:57 PM

            I like this comment and emma youre right. Depression is when people are sad and its an illness. God Damn! Maybe the author doesnt even know how depression feels like. Its such a judgement to say that being depression is when sad people are sadder than most people so we aint trying to get attention we just need help!

          • fiona March 24, 2014 at 10:51 PM

            Hello there, I am sorry to hear that you are experiencing this… may I share with you a little of my understanding in the hope that it may help you. …Depression BECOMES an illness ( or disease = dis-ease/not at ease) but noone starts out with this. What the author of this has said is absolutely true. We start out with negative thoughts and they then TRIGGER negative chemicals in our brains- which then leads to an imbalance of chemicals. This obviously makes us feel depressed and have more negative thoughts which triggers more negative chemicals and the imbalance and feeling of depression increases into a state of hopelessness where we end up saying “I am depressed and nothing can help me” The problem with applying drugs to this creates a dependence on the drugs which carries with it anxiety lest the drug not be available, and in some cases shame that we have become dependent. It also ofcourse means there will be times of withdrawal from the drug and more negative thoughts and feelings will surge into the person, bringing of course more depression and more imbalance of chemicals and then a need to take a higher dose of anti-depressants – and round and round this vicious circle will go. As the author pointed out however is that our own brains have the capacity to produce ‘good chemicals’ and produce a balance in our heads- and this happens when we have positive thoughts.
            I suffered severe depression for ten years ( and I was a heavy-drinker too and suffered a lot of shame for all of this as well).. but when i became a christian ( I was prayed for at the height of the pain and fear after ten years) a certain repeated problem I had had for the last ten years stopped OVERNIGHT- it was so dramatic that I realised there must be a God. I was instantly changed and MOST of the depression left pretty well overnight…… HOWEVER, and this is important, humans beings are so capable of slipping back- and so was I!! A few years into my now very happy life something happened and i slipped back into feeling a bit sorry for myself but I heard a speaker come and say that as christians we had ”no right” to feel sorry for ourselves. That got my attention- I HONESTLY thought I had a ‘right’to feel sorry for myself— but apparently not!! This guy was saying that as God had rescued and healed us and given all we needed for today ( note- not tomorrow, but just today!) that we should be grateful for our God who provides for the day we are here. He said ( literally!) çount your blessings- from that day on prayed and told the Lord that I refused to feel sorry for myself. Instead my thoughts were focussed on what is good in the world. God loves us all and has given us the mechanism to have ‘balanced chemicals’in our heads- good, positive, loving and happy thoughts! This is God’s gift to us!
            Its true, we are in a battle and there is plenty pf evil on this planet– but God is looking at our hearts and helping us when we turn to Him or turn to what is good. We do not need to STAY down ( yes, we all fall occasionally, but we can get up again! ) – God has put many good things and people on this planet… be of good cheer I have overcome the world! – that is what Jesus told us. Today you have HOPE- Jesus is real and died to pay the price of our sin by dying IN OUR PLACE- so we do not need to be separated anymore from God because of our sin ( wrongdoing/wrong thinking) ……Before you get up and before you go to sleep Force yourself to think of TEN things that are good and that you can be thankful for ( IVE done it to a HUNDRED!) – like I can see, hear, I have hair, I can move, someone loves me, someone is helping out of their love little animals who are hurt- for every negative their is a positive. If you keep at ths you wil eventually feel a little ping of happiness- if only for a mili-second…. Please, do NOT hold onto this depression- let go, because this is not what od created you for. Share your feelings with someone and share some good positive thoughts with yourself and others- and then get up and Thank God for this day which is given to you. God bless and do not worry because God truely loves you x x x

          • Lauren April 7, 2014 at 3:54 AM

            I agree with this article to some degree. But as Emma says- I agree with her completely. Depression is something complicated and beyond measure. There are so many reasons why someone could be depressed. They don’t have to make sense to you. You don’t have to complain about people’s problems. The fact that you complain about someone else’s problems and calling them selfish. Makes you look retarded.

            I do hate how some depressants whine so much about their problems. But myself as a depressant dont do that. I won’t accept it.

            And you are wrong. It is not all about US. Its about YOU. The public causes us to drive ourselves crazy to strive to fit in. To strive to be happy and perfect. Everyone has problems. I know that. We do have to suck it and live it. There are obstacles in life.

            But if someone is depressed and are hurting themselves. They are depressed. That is what it is. Don’t complain about it just because you are too fucking twisted to understand.

          • Toma April 7, 2014 at 2:05 PM

            And here we see one of the biggest problems we face as a society today. Everything is everyone else’s fault. When good shit happens, ‘I’ did it. When bad shit happens, ‘YOU’ did it.

            While I generally steer away from self-help-style books, I’ve started reading ‘The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People’. It does a good job addressing this phenomenon early on. We need to stop pointing the finger. Change and improvement come from within.

            But you are correct in one sense. Society is driving us to be a certain why, and conforming to that way is causing us a lot of grief, only because how it is telling us to behave goes against every spiritual instinct that we have. We need truth now more than ever. The truth is that depression is caused by our own ego, nothing more.

          • northraccoon April 10, 2014 at 6:37 AM

            I agree Emma. I have clinical depression. I’ve actually had tests done and it was found out that my gland system just does not release enough serotonin for me to function in a “non-depressive” state on its own. I will need my antidepressants for the rest of my life. My psychiatrist has told me that this is a real illness, and I don’t have anything wrong with my outlook on my life – only with my happy hormone levels and that will never change. Every time I go in to see him, we talk about the things that have happened in my months. I tell him if I’ve had a bad experience but I also understand that it is a temporary experience. Without the meds, it’s literally that I *can’t* feel “normal.”

            I wish more people would understand this about mood and mental illnesses and disorders. They are quite different than “I’m so depressed, my crush told me he has no interest” or whatever.

          • Blaise April 17, 2014 at 2:06 PM

            I completely agree with Emma! Depression is NOT just like, “I’m sad because I don’t have this.” You have to see the bigger picture! To the author, the fact that you wrote this article proves you have never fought depression. Also, about the quote at the begginning, maybe some people stay in “prison” when the door is wide open because to them, the prison is a maze and they can’t find their way to the end where the wide open door is!

          • Eli April 19, 2014 at 9:25 AM

            It’s all in your head… You probably live in the United States, or similar, have food on your table and a roof over your head, and much more if you have access to a computer. You write well, so education is there. I wonder what you could possibly be depressed about. And just like the author of this article stated, all I could hear on your post was “I,I,I” Just get up and do something in life. There are countless activites to keep your mind busy rather than dwelling on a tiny thing. Life is life, deal with it!

            I do sympathize with the family and friends that have to deal with your “problem”. Probably bring them down while you are at it !

          • Pollen April 22, 2014 at 6:07 AM

            I agree with Emma and I partially agree with Toma. I think it is both. Some people have imbalances and that is just the way it is. Some people cause them with their thoughts. Those are the people who are only ever depressed once in their life and get over it. I think that even if you have an imbalance you also have to work on your thought process but it isn’t always possible without medication and mental heath help. Then there is the chronically depressed. The ones born that way. I am one of those. My mom swears it started as a baby, I couldn’t sleep I was picky with food, I was basically miserable and cried all the time. I NEVER had a good night sleep my entire life until medication and therapy and even then I still have a hard time. I always feel like shit. Always sad. I can ignore it for a time but it’s always there under the surface ready to come out at any moment. Oh and it isn’t even always about me! Holy shit Toma not all the depressed people are entirely selfish! Actually it’s often not about me. I get depressed because of the terrible things going on the world. I find it hard not to see all the bad everywhere in the world. I find it extremely hard to see any good. And believe me I try! The things I once loved to do can suddenly bring me no joy at all. Then there are the times I see the food I have to eat and I cry because there are people who are starving in the world. I read a newspaper or watch the news and hear about stuff like the Sandy Hook shooting and I am inconsolable for days. It isn’t all about me and to think that depression is just someone being selfish and having a pity party is pretty closed minded. Just because you haven’t experienced chronic long term depression doesn’t mean it isn’t real. Can completely changing the way you think stop someone from being depressed? Depends on the depression. For me it appears to take both medication and CBT/DBT, which by the way are both therapies to change the way you think. You know that mental health stuff that the doctors do that is apparently a bunch of horse shit. Oh yeah! Not all shrinks just let you bitch for hours on end they actually do make you look at situations differently and try to teach you how to think in more positive way. I guess Toma would have known that if he was actually knowledgeable on the subject but hey everyone is entitled to their opinion right?

          • lucyc May 1, 2014 at 9:30 AM

            THANK YOU. This guy’s article is utter bullshit.

          • George fish May 30, 2014 at 7:43 AM

            I agree with Emma, depression is actually medically identifiable, caused by a chemical imbalance in the brain

          • Kegan June 7, 2014 at 7:05 AM

            I agree with you, Emma. I’ve have chronic depression and I guarantee you tom, nobody would genuinely want it. I was a fucking wreck and despite having good friends, interesting classes, and a supportive family I went absolutely insane I broke down crying over the smallest thing. The only thing that have helped have been counseling and meds. Chronic depression is an illness and it needs professional help. The most valid thing this page could be applied to is situational depression, which can be legitimately helped by positive thinking. To those who don’t understand the difference situational is like “my dog died, now I’m sad”, chronic is like “I’m sleeping way to much and crying at the most insignificant things. Stuff that used to make me happy doesn’t. And most importantly, there is NO trigger “. That’s the worst aspect with actual chronic depression, it’s very hard, near impossible, to ever feel happy even if you’re doing your favorite hobby or activity. So please stop confusing the two, they’re not the same and its very offensive to mix them up. Telling a chronically depressed person to stop being depressed is like telling a flu patient to stop being sick. And I know a lot of you are bringing up the placebo effect, and yes this is valid. A lot of research has been put into it and shown that it can be helpful. But depression cuts off the ability to be happy rendering it’s discussion on this page oddly miscellaneous. Furthermore its been shown to be an actual function that can be, interestingly enough, impaired by alzheimer’s. So you can be the happiest alzheimers patient you want and still not be aided by its effect. Its a biological function, not a magical cure.

            Those are my two cents,

          • J June 19, 2014 at 8:33 PM

            Oh Emma I totally agree! Thank you for your response to this ignorant person. I have never been so annoyed at reading such nonsense. I have not read further than your comment or his follow up to his article. I will when I calm down. His ignorance angered me to the core, probably because it is so widespread, many believe like he does.

            Your response is in line with what I would have said. When will people finally accept that depression IS an illness. We are not talking about feeling unhappy for a few days….YOU cannot just snap out of it!

          • Chandler July 22, 2014 at 11:48 PM

            thank you!

        • Reply MB September 24, 2013 at 3:32 AM

          TOMA: HAVE YOU EVER BEN DEPRESSED?

          • Toma September 28, 2013 at 8:16 AM

            NO. BUT I HAVE MULTIPLE IMMEDIATE FAMILY MEMBERS WHO HAVE, AND I DON’T TELL THEIR STORIES OUT OF RESPECT FOR THEIR PRIVACY. IF YOU ASK ANY DOCTOR THEY WILL GIVE YOU SOME SCIENTIFIC BS ABOUT HOW I AM HIGHLY PRONE TO IT. YET HERE I AM, DEPRESSION-FREE FOR A LIFETIME. One day I will tell their stories, but not now. For now all I will say is that in my family I am by far the most balanced, and by far the most spiritual.

          • Kim September 30, 2013 at 7:24 PM

            Sorry I replied here. I didn’t see where else to comment. This article is making me feel even more depressed, and I am even crying right now out of frustration. I’ve been depressed since childhood, and I am far from selfish. I have always been a very giving person. In the past I’ve spent all my money and a lot of my time on people who definitely did not deserve it. I’ve helped people for free, given people my stuff just because they said they liked or wanted it, worked for free, given expensive gifts, done nice things and went out of my way for people and given all I had when there was nothing left for me, expecting and getting nothing in return. This article is making me think it was all definitely unappreciated, and is making me not want to deal with people any more if this is what they think of me. In fact I haven’t left the house in over a week since I read this. Why should I even be seen by people who automatically judge me as selfish when I’m not? I’d rather nobody know I exist.

          • Me October 2, 2013 at 2:22 PM

            Sorry Kim. I’m with you. This guy is off base. It has nothing to do with “I didn’t accomplish this” like he ignorantly suggests. Everything in your life can be perfect and you may be depressed. He clearly hasn’t been depressed in his lifetime. Otherwise he’d know how miserably wrong he is. Absurd article.

          • Person October 15, 2013 at 7:29 AM

            I totally agree. This article is massively insensitive. Dont you realize that people who are ACTUALLY depressed (Not just sad because they didn’t accomplish something as this guy describes) are depressed in part because they think extremely negatively of themselves? We don’t need you reinforcing those negative thoughts,

            You also seem to be unable to draw the line between greed and basic human needs. I admit, the reason why I am depressed is because of the fact that everyone thinks I’m some creepy and wierd just because I have always been the quiet otaku type, and they always have for as long as I can remember (dating back to pre-school I was always “that” kid). I am severely depressed about it because I have no friends to speak of, and the severe social anxiety that I have developed as a result of everyone hating me for no good reason makes it so difficult to connect with people that it often seems hopeless. I can honestly say that I hate my social anxiety. I hate my depression. I wish I could just have one person who understands me, and I would give anything to someone offering me that without question.

            But instead myself and others like me are constantly bombarded by even more hate messages from people like you, Toma. Is it really too much to ask to have just one person who understands you? Its a basic human need. To say that someone is selfish for needing human contact in place of a void of loneliness is like telling a man dying of thirst that he is selfish for asking for water. So fuck you. People like you are the reason I go to therapy.

          • Golda Velez November 2, 2013 at 5:56 AM

            Hey Person – Try writing – its a way of expressing your thoughts to the world and someone somewhere may find and read them and say ‘aha – that is me too!’
            I don’t think you sound weird, I think a lot of people feel the same way. Try talking to people online, like at nerdfighters.com or some other fun networking place, its sometimes easier than in person.

          • Toma October 2, 2013 at 11:00 PM

            Hi Kim. You remind me of a family member of mine. They are the most generous person you will ever meet. I can call them at 3am and they will come without a second thought. They will give you their heart and their life and never think twice about it. Yet, they suffer from depression. If selfishness is the cause, how is this possible? Didn’t I just prove myself wrong?

            Everyone needs to stop thinking of selfishness as having a corrupt and self-centred heart. Self-centerdness is the mind thinking that the world revolves around it. This family member, as truly warm-hearted as they are, still has a perspective which places them at the centre. When they do what you are doing their suffering is born of not being the centre. Your reference to being unappreciated strikes me as an example of it.

          • JD113 October 3, 2013 at 4:13 AM

            Everyone is selfish, depressed or not. You can’t single out depression and say that all are selfish. What about you? You have to have some sort of motivation to go on and do things in your everyday life. You tell yourself good positive things to get you going. You think about what you’re doing today, what you’re going to eat, how you’re getting to work. You’re basically thinking of yourself all day. “Centering” yourself. You don’t think about some other person all day do you? You have a biased ‘opinion’ about depression when in reality, its so much more broad than that. Everyone is different. No one person was made the same.

          • Person October 15, 2013 at 8:52 AM

            And you need to know that if you leave this article up, dozens of people who really ARE depressed (Not just sad over this that or the other as you claim) will probably read this article and kill themselves because they just cant bear the pain of people like you telling them that they suck on top of all of the hate they already give themselves. Sure, I would totally agree with you that suicide is the most selfish act imaginable, but it does not justify you giving them that last push over the edge that they needed. Remove this article before you become a murderer (if you havent already) and THINK next time before insulting people who the last thing they need is to be insulted.

          • Grace October 24, 2013 at 2:31 PM

            I have heard that the greatest artists and writers go through deep depression. It is not always a bad thing you know. It takes all kinds. I get depressed quite often. I agree depressed people are selfish as well as happy people. We are all selfish. How many of us can say We love our neighbor as ourselves. If we did we would have to give our neighbour everything we give ourselves. But we can’t of course. Because depressed or not we are selfish. There was only one person who was not. We all know who he was and is.

          • Ed November 19, 2013 at 10:04 AM

            You are an idiot, depression isn’t some pleasant experience that one goes through for some inspiration. Depression is a period of darkness where it seems like the afflicted is drowning a vortex of negative black smoke. You physically feel pain and weight pressing down on you at all times, the selfishness is the only way you can interpret such a dark event. Depressed people generally show how unselfish they are from refraining to commit suicide. This article seems like more of a conspiracy than a well thought out educated paper. We might as well assume that the twin towers tragedy was orchestrated by the government as well. It’s ridiculous/

          • Newzbug November 20, 2013 at 4:02 AM

            In response to: You are an idiot, depression isn’t some pleasant experience that one goes through for some inspiration. Depression is a period of darkness where it seems like the afflicted is drowning a vortex of negative black smoke. You physically feel pain and weight pressing down on you at all times, the selfishness is the only way you can interpret such a dark event. Depressed people generally show how unselfish they are from refraining to commit suicide. This article seems like more of a conspiracy than a well thought out educated paper. We might as well assume that the twin towers tragedy was orchestrated by the government as well. It’s ridiculous

            “I am well aware of depression not being a pleasant experience. However there has been shown to be a direct link between depressive illnesses and creativity. I know the depth of the pain. I have felt it more times than I can count. And it has nearly killed me on more than one time. It runs in my family : father, mother, sister, grandmother … I have lost family members to depression. So don’t insult me. If you misunderstood my meaning. I apologize … but I try to be an advocate for depressive help.

          • Johnny October 25, 2013 at 8:55 PM

            Okay now…WHO’S trolling people who are depressed?? I’ve fortunately road out those horribly bad times by getting out of the house and hanging around people who are simply…better people. I don’t know why, it just worked. Please people…don’t make extremely obvious suggestions, we need support, not protection. Thanks~

          • Name Here November 14, 2013 at 9:43 AM

            I have been depressed before and can say, it depends on the person, I cant speak for everyone. my mother never knew i was depressed and I never acted like it around her or anybody, because I didn’t want people’s sympathy or sadness for me. Maybe selfish isn’t the right word, but I do understand what you, Toma, mean when you say “Self-centerness is the mind thinking that the world revolves around it”.

            I learn how to not be depressed just by listening to my mom talk about “The Spirit of God is around you and only you can control your thinking and actions in life”. It took me awhile but I understand now what she meant. only I can change my outcome, how I feel, no one can tell me what I can and cannot do, only I can. I am one of the most happiest people you will ever meet my friends say so too, and that’s because I don’t think about the bad or ponder on the darkness creeping up in my mind.

            One of my secrets is friends, sharing what i feel, and them helping me to be positive. Get other people into your problem let them help, God made people so they can be together, we are one. If that wasn’t true then what is the purpose of making Eve for Adam?

          • Washington Irving January 2, 2014 at 5:07 PM

            If you have never been clinically depressed, you just don’t get it. You may accept it. You may have valid opinions about it based on your experiences with those who have had it and do get it. Some things, only another sufferer understands. That’s okay. But never assume it’s just a matter of changing perspective. That can help. A lot. But it is not a simple solution. Honor the complexity of the human experience.

          • fiona March 24, 2014 at 11:58 PM

            self-absorbtion or ”naval-gazing” is more acurate than ”selfish” because so often depressed people are NOT selfish! But its the tendency to get caught or trapped even though they may not have started off that way, that is the problem….they end up entangled in thoughts and fears that they just can’t get away from. Thats why LEARNING to get away from these thoughts is helpful… Its not super-easy… but it can be done. Someone in physical pain IS in physical pain but they do not need to be mentally depressed by it also. Thats because they can learn to put their thoughts in other areas. We live in a world that at times APPEARS to have very little meaning or love and as a result a lot of people think their lives have no real meaning- well, THAT is enough to depress anyone!!! Thats why addressing real issues of why we are here and finding our purpose and how we fit in is really important in our recovery from depression and a sense of meaninglessness.
            I was severely depressed for ten years and even studied philosophy at university to find a way out of of my mounting problems and depression… I suffered so badly I thought of death nearly every day and didnt want to get out of bed. Speaking to people was a real task and sometimes I couldn’t speak for up to 3 days at a time. … it was VERY SEVERE!. I can tell you however that when I became a christian after ten years of this my life did a very radical U bend that completely changed how I felt and saw things. I can tell you ll that Jesus is real, He can help every single person who calls out to Him for help. Ive seen literally countless people be radically changed by Him. There is a reason we are here and have to go through certain trials- but hear this- it will NOT be forever!! …Seek the truth and you WIILL understand why we are going through our personal trial. Even if its been going on for years… God will still meet you and help you. Jesus came INTO our messed up, pain-filled world to help us to find a way OUT of the empty meaningless lives we lead. He came to show us that our lives matter and count and that God is watching us and will help us.

            I was set free of this awful depression 18 years ago an for that I am truly thankful…..can I encourage people to read one of the gospels, either Mathew, Mark, Luke or John and to really use this experience of feeling depressed as a catalyst to help you seek some real and much deeper answers. God loves us but He didn’t promise us roses- He promised truth and love -( and, yes, joy!)- but not without a time of sorrow…Jesus Himself was rejected and abused and went through many pains and sorrows- but He also came through. Jesus told us, “take up your cross and follow me’- perhaps with the depth of depression you have known you are better qualified to understand the things the Lord was speaking about…. Do not give up in your search but be encouraged that you have been honest and brave so far… and it is not time to give up, but to search deeper and be honest enough to seek the truth of why we are here. … God Bless you x x

          • GuiltyAsCharged October 12, 2013 at 12:37 PM

            So what i hear you saying is that you people please to the point it hurts your and puts you into a state of depression? Then you would be agreeing with his statement? The key is to pay attention to what you say or how you answer the question. You may be giving away the true answer to your simple problem. Depression is made up thought or a lie we believe. the longer we dwell on that thought the deeper we fall. Think of it this way. You make a bad choice. The next time its easier to make. soo on down the line Building up till you don’t even make the choice its just a habit or a pattern of agreement that you fail inline with… So applying that to the depression topic. I would say that if you dwell on the problem it comes bigger than life. Hints the lack of wanting to deal with people. But if you think that of people you sure will bring it out of them… Pre judgement isn’t our place either. Maybe its time for a mindset change and a new perspective. You will only be depressed as long as you allow it.

          • Kylie December 1, 2013 at 1:02 PM

            Um no. The other people on here share their experiences of being selfless to illustrate depressed people are not always selfish. As for me, I am a very selfish person, but my depression did not cause my selfishness or vice versa. Depression is a medical illness, and everyone diagnosed has a different personality. While some personality types are prone to depression it does not it is the cause. Also, type a personalities are more to prone heart attack. Does that mean that the heart attack was made up?

          • gopal December 10, 2013 at 10:13 PM

            I came across this post because I’m seriously pissed off with depressed people… sorry even if it is genuine it is just so hard to take seriously!

            What the author says here may not be scientific but I can relate to it with all the depressed people I know. All of them are damn selfish.

            Selfishness doesn’t mean not being a nice person … It means serving the comfort of your emotions before what needs to be done, I.e. thinking with your gut when you know your brain is telling you to do the right thing.

            Every depressed person I’ve met has no backbone on the important things… This is selfishness. Knowing what the right thing is and running away from it.

          • divya April 3, 2014 at 12:08 PM

            haha and how many depressed people have you met gopal? more than a million i’d assume after reading ur oh so confident comment!

          • divya April 3, 2014 at 12:01 PM

            kim! not all people are like this okay? u be strong! i understand u and as do many other people i’m sure!…i too am not selfish and no other person can get me into thinking that i am! do things if they make u happy but dont expect anything in return cause thats how the world works!

          • hockey1 October 5, 2013 at 9:27 AM

            IT has nothing to do with being spiritual. It has everything to do with if you Toma want to be remembered as a Dip Fuck or not. Remove article or I will find you and finish you off.!

          • Name Here November 14, 2013 at 9:48 AM

            hockey1- Why are you being a meany-meany butt face, that’s not nice at all. and there is this thing called freedom of speech, soo technically he can post what ever he wants. oh right and ANYTHING you say or DO, WILL be used in the court of law. so that means if you do anything there is evidence to support that you threaten Mr. Haiku and can be prosecuted. thank you and have a nice day.

          • Bex October 8, 2013 at 7:09 AM

            I feel like my IQ dropped a few points reading this. Also, unless you’re about 70-80 years old, it hasn’t been a lifetime ‘depression free’. There’s every chance you can still suffer from it. Which could be a big-ass surprise if you think it’s anything like this…Also, while they haven’t worked out root causes, depression can be an imbalance in serotonin and dopamine. The latter controls the wee rush you get doing something like exercising, playing guitar, basically anything that is ‘rewarding’ to a human. Without it, the world seems lifeless and gray. It is that cut and dry. I don’t why you don’t know something that basic if you choose to write about this.

          • Yournameiswild October 9, 2013 at 1:09 AM

            I agree. This article was poorly conceived; the concept of depression (a highly studied area in psychology) as nothing but an existential flaw is pretty immature.

            Judging from the author’s comments, the main thrust of the article has been emotionally influenced by the members of his own family who have a history of depression.

            Toma’s reports of his family – and the conjured ‘Western Businessman’ – displaying “self-centred” traits is anecdotal, and nothing we read here has any grounding in reality.

          • Shiry October 10, 2013 at 1:07 AM

            Amen to that! The author clearly has some personal issues with depression in his family and has been greatly impacted by this. This seems to be his basis for denial of anything but a religious approach. It is sad that his family has jaded him so, but he needs to accept that not all depressed people are represented by those in his own family. Unfortunately, if he ventures to do this, his own world becomes shaky because everything he believes in must be questioned in terms of depression having one treatment plan. It is a very risky thing for him to do. To open his mind and actually research other cases and evidence and treatments and possibilities. So he remains safe win his womb. It is understandable but sad. To each his own, right?

            His opinion is merely an opinion. A biased one at that. With age and growth he might start to open up to other possibilities. It took aging and years for me to do it and it is possible!

          • Toma October 10, 2013 at 6:37 AM

            You couldn’t be further off base.

          • Luke April 1, 2014 at 7:58 AM

            Ok, depression is real, and it does not make people selfish.

            Story time:
            When I was 7, my parents got divorced. Now I was a happy, social butterfly but down deep I was always sad. I didn’t really show it and I only got sad when I thought of my father. Flash forward a couple of months and my mom says we are moving to Texas to be by family. That hit me hard; I was leaving behind my whole life. Friends, family, school and all of my memories. As soon as I got to Texas I hated it. That is when my mom noticed something wrong. I went and got checked out by some therapists and they told my mom it was the beginning of depression. After no treatment, I became suicidal. In the third grade, I had a small notebook filled with drawings of me killing myself. It took years of being on suicide watch and treatments of medicine everyday and therapists every week to pull me out of depression.

            Don’t try to explain something you don’t understand. It makes you sound arrogant and ignorant.

          • Johnny October 25, 2013 at 9:02 PM

            I agree, Bex. Karma’s a word to bring a smile to some sad faces. Sadly to say~ ;D

          • Abby October 18, 2013 at 2:50 PM

            With all due respect, I actually feel like this very article was done out of selfishness. It’s wonderful that you feel comfortable in your own skin, but what was the point of writing this and at what cost? Do you realize that there are probably children out there that are old enough to use the internet and searched the word depression in hopes that they understand why they feel a certain way? Then they come across something that is calling them selfish? I feel like like this was just a self indulgent rant disguised as motivation. Sorry, honey, but you really need to check yourself and stop being self-righteous at the cost of others. It is not being balanced at all. Don’t overestimate your own understanding of the human brain regardless of the research you have done or what you have experienced. By the way, there are probably a lot more people in other countries (unreported) who suffer depression as well and hide it because they don’t want to be judged by people with this attitude, but they still feel it. This is being insensitive to them as well. Don’t speak on behalf of billions of people through a site that billions have access to.

          • Johnny October 25, 2013 at 9:13 PM

            Irony, eh? It can come on like severe…depression?? @.@ !!! Abby knows wants up. If someone can’t put their own self (like see/feel) in any another person’s shoes…Hmmm…

          • lilian506 November 17, 2013 at 12:48 PM

            Abby, really couldn’t of put it better myself. applauding. why did this guy feel the need to even jam his oar in on this when he has no real grounds of understanding or research. he hasn’t experienced this dilemma of depression himself, so at what moment did he think he was rightly equipped to write a help guard on matters. no ounce of logic there whatsoever

          • Alan October 26, 2013 at 12:26 PM

            “YOU ASK ANY DOCTOR THEY WILL GIVE YOU SOME SCIENTIFIC BS ABOUT HOW I AM HIGHLY PRONE TO IT. YET HERE I AM, DEPRESSION-FREE FOR A LIFETIME.”

            Let’s point out the flaws.

            First, you avoided the most obvious statement. Genes relate to how likely you are able to suffer or gain something, not that you will. So you haven’t yet had a lifestyle that promotes depression, okay…

            Second, to say you will be depression-free for a lifetime not only expresses such hubris I’ve not seen before, it’s also absurd. How can you predict the future? By saying you will never be something, only increases the likelihood of it occurring. But looking at the first flaw, if you don’t understand likelihood, this discussion may go full-circle.

            Third, I understand why you are confused about depression. You believe in this chain of events: Depression>Attention>Self>Greed. However, everything comes back to you, not just depression. And like others have pointed out, this isn’t the correct depression, either. You are using depression as sadness with the goal of wanting attention (because public displays of sadness are ways to gain attention).

            Four, depression (not just sadness) builds character. It almost always has you look inward and truly understand yourself (or perhaps you’ve already looked inward and have become depressed to learn who you truly are, but then comes the goal-setting and keeping your faults in check). You see, if you never want to know what depression feels like, you will forever be conceited and delusional. Even if you look inward without depression and find yourself saying “nope, I’m a great person, no major flaws here”, then please don’t reproduce. This world does not need such pomposity. If you look inward and find faults, but choose to do nothing about them, then you’re the selfish one. At some level, you believe your flaws aren’t really flaws, and that if someone doesn’t like something about you, it’s their burden.

            Five, you can ignore everything I’ve said up to this point if you’d like. But I have a question for you. Your statement that depression is selfish stems out of the depressed person inflicting his low attitude onto others, and taking their time, attention, and energy. Taking that part of your story alone, what do you say to a depressed person who puts on the happiest face for others? Not a single person in the world knows of the person’s troubles except the person. Are they selfish?

            You also say to just think positive, and you’ll be positive. That only works if your conscious thoughts created a goal that is of delusion anyway. If at your core, you truly feel you need to be sad, that you must suffer, or that this is atoning for something, or for a purpose, then no matter what you think, you will not “snap” out of it.

          • Toma November 6, 2013 at 1:53 PM

            Sorry. I truly meant to say ‘depression free in my lifetime’. My bad.

            I believe I have addressed your other points in previous comments.

          • maya November 27, 2013 at 10:04 PM

            You are exactly what is wrong with the world.why should we have to be happy all the time.do you know what its like to have an alcoholic father that never gave any emotional support,or a mother who was too busy looking after the father?if you dont then shut the fuck up,if you do then maybe your depression..low mood..is around the corner.mine has just reared its head at 35..lifetime free!!what a wanker

          • InducedJoy October 30, 2013 at 2:12 PM

            Many say the smartest people are the most unhappy. Many also say the smartest people tend to not be spiritual or religious whatsoever. Not sure what being “spiritual” has to do with anything in your argument, except for the fact that “spiritual” people like to talk about their spirituality at really unnecessary times as if it makes people care more about what they have to say.

            Look, you clearly have no grasp on what depression is or even how basic heredity works, not just for mental illnesses, but for just about anything. A genetic predisposition to something doesn’t mean you’re going to develop it, even something very physical, like celiac disease. I am genetically predisposed and I have it, while my brother is also predisposed but doesn’t actually have the disease. Go figure. Pick up a book and educate yourself on basic psychology and genetics before you go blabbering on some blog like you know what’s up. You can have all the family you want with depression but that doesn’t make you an expert. You’ve never even been there, you have no idea, people don’t just develop depression because they stubbed a toe or something. It’s a dark place, don’t act like you have some sort of clue just because you’re related to somebody who has it. Spend weeks in bed, literally unable to get up and shower yourself or eat, can’t even go to school, and all you hear is “Wow you’re so lazy, why can’t you do anything right, why don’t you just be a normal person, you need to get yourself together”… All from people just like you. People like you are the kind of people who make those with severe depression give up and attempt to end their life. It’s a total lack of empathy on your part.

            Also, how dare you try and downplay the role of a psychiatrist. Do you know how dedicated most of these people are to helping people who need it? Like it’s some kind of bullshit pseudoscience, like it hasn’t been studied for centuries, like the mind is some simple blob in your skull that can be figured out in a fucking blog post. You have invested absolutely zero critical thought into what you have just written, and in the meantime, you’ve managed to offend a lot of people.

            Mental illness, from depression to anorexia to borderline personality disorder, kills people. Psychiatrists try their hardest to help those who hurt on the inside. It’s one thing to have a broken leg, but to have a broken mind? That’s a pretty damn difficult thing to fix. Give psychiatrists more credit, especially when they’ve probably saved the lives of more people around you than you would ever want to know.

          • Toma November 6, 2013 at 2:20 PM

            I give credit to people doing rape and trauma counselling out of the goodness of their own hearts, and to the priests and nuns I personally know who help the poor in places like India and Africa, not to psychiatrists charging $100+ an hour so they can prescribe you medication that you don’t need, while they are rewarded with free holidays to exotic destinations for being so fabulous at doing so.

            When was the last time your shrink said, “Hey, whatever your name is, this month’s sessions are on me, because I love my job and I only do it to make sure people like you get better”? You are defending a corrupt industry.

          • itsclinical November 9, 2013 at 4:27 AM

            So do you go into your job and tell them that you’ll just go ahead and work for free today just because it’s your job?! Of course they get paid to do what they do! They went to school for 10 plus years to do what they do!

            Also I can guarantee that even though you’ve witnessed depression in family members that in no way means that you know what they are going through. I bet you don’t even know half of what they feel or think. It’s a**holes like you that make depressed people hide and not want to seek help and then sadly a lot of them commit suicide.

            Would you tell a cancer patient to just “think positive and think that you don’t have cancer and then poof your cancer will be gone”???

          • mandilouwho? December 19, 2013 at 1:56 AM

            OK here I’m gonna clear this up right now because as a person that is spiritual, doesn’t watch anything negative, eats healthy, exercises, and has a very positive outlook especially with what I have been thru and had a good childhood at least with two loving parents but always even as a child had bouts of depression disagree that it is selfish and that it is in our control to stop it. God is the only one who can heal anything and mental illness is talked about in the bible and only Jesus could heal it. Yes I agree there are too many people quick to label everything a mental illness and prescribe medications when they are only a bandaid but some do need it. Schitzoids cannot control it nor have the mindset or will to. I love my children they are amazing angels and so is my loving husband but I still for no reason get depressed when I have a great life that is simple and I appreciate and enjoy the simple things always, but it just happens. I will cry for no reason and just get upset. Trust me nobody would choose to feel that way if they can help it. This is ridiculous and judgemental. When you just all of a sudden get a terrible fear of nothing or get that icky blah feeling and try to think positive but nothing happens it is very real and not on purpose. Now in saying that there is a difference between allowing yourself to mourn a loss or something bad that has happened and there is situational depression which can be helped by picking yourself up and being strong but it takes time and is healthy to let yourself feel what you feel. Its also a fact that women are more suseptable to depression because of hormones and emotions which can be unbalanced and also if you haven’t heard of post pardem its very real and affects mother’s and cannot be helped without treatment of some kind. How do u explain perfectly healthy moms who love their kids but then go crazy after having one and kill them in the name of God or out of fear something worse will happen to them? Sorry but anyone who could do that or kill at all is mental at the time and has lost it.

          • George Metos December 13, 2013 at 11:48 AM

            Honestly? You think they have an easy job and all they do is prescribe medication?
            I suffer from depression. In the 8th grade I was going to a Catholic school and constantly being told I am going to hell for many reasons. But the worst, was because of who I was. I felt hated and believed I should hate myself. My parents took me to counseling to try and understand why I was so sad. It was there that I was able to finally understand why I was hurting. I found it ran in my family and I had allot of emotional problems (my school being the cause of several)
            I cannot tell you how good it feels to tell someone what you are feeling. Someone who understands and want’s to help you.
            those of us who are depressed tend to feel guilty about unloading on friends and family because it is hard. I sit and counsel my friends almost daily, and it is the hardest thing to do. There was one point that I finally broke down and had to take a week off of everything because I was taking so much in. These people have one of the hardest, headache inducing, life consuming practices that can be boiled down to listening. Honestly, I think they deserve it. When was the last time you listened to 20 people everyday tell you about how they feel and why they hurt?

            By the way,It was not actually my therapist who prescribed antidepressants, but my doctor. I tried them, found I didn’t like how I felt on them and fought it on my own and the tools given to me from therapy.

            So suck on that you ignorant butt. Pull your head out of your ass and actually go do some research about something before presenting your opinion as fact (and you did by saying “it is in your head” and not “I believe it is in your head”) because as far as I can tell, you have not actually studied psychology or medicine.

          • Right. December 25, 2013 at 7:37 AM

            Dude what are you smoking? Lol Well I’m glad you don’t call the shots. The only thing you have is ego. Ever hear the definition of a psychopath? Massive egos is one of their key elements, narcisism… and it’s known in the psychotherapry industry they would never admit to being a narcisist. You might want to seek help.

          • triemers April 1, 2014 at 8:23 AM

            My counselor has been there for me during ym episodes and panic attacks, as well as my severe depressive episodes even past his hours. The system is not corrupt, these people just need to make a living. And from what I have heard from friends overseas, the priests and nuns in Africa tend to make things works. You obviously have very little understanding of neurology; I would suggest you actually research your topic before making an uninformed statement publicly that supports hatred and stigma against getting help for something so damaging.

          • meekerseeker November 5, 2013 at 12:15 PM

            You’re a dumbass in need of attention.

          • Jason Roof November 6, 2013 at 7:00 AM

            Thats almost as asinine as a person who has smoked cigs all his/her life and never getting cancer claiming ‘im cancer proof and indestructible’…… You are nothing more than lucky and drew the correct cards…….. Just bc cigs can increase your risk does not mean you are destined for cancer, just like bc depression runs in your family does not mean you are destined to have it,and just bc you never got it does not mean you avoided the inevitable simply by shear will power…. Think about it

          • Tomainacoma November 15, 2013 at 12:53 AM

            I was going to offer you insight on this topic in which you clearly know nothing about, by sharing my story, but then I thought, that would be selfish of me. Besides there are some posts on here that were insightful and wonderfully written (you might want to take notes) that convey what I would have said to you.

            Instead, I will just leave you with this one question. Would you be able to direct me to the eternal optimists skipping merrily in countries like Sudan and Ethiopia were starvation and civil war are prevalent? I’m getting really sick of seeing the commercials of emaciated and dehydrated children with flies all over them. I mean, how selfish of them to hog the camera for the length of the commercial.

          • Toma November 27, 2013 at 2:39 PM

            When I lived in Italy I had a friend from Mali. He hardly spoke Italian, and he had only been there a year, yet we communicated well. He lived every day not wallowing in the war and poverty surrounding him, but in the hope of a better life, and the knowledge that there was one out there. He never gave up, and he now lives in Italy, has a steady job, and a long-term Italian girlfriend. While he wasn’t skipping around Mali as an eternal optimist, he never became depressed because he had hope, and because he didn’t have the luxury of being a whiny little bitch.

          • Jason December 14, 2013 at 4:11 PM

            I think this is very interesting. Your friend was never depressed because he had hope, yet that is not the same as being non-selfish. So this example seems to propose a completely different root of depression: lack of hope. Is not having hope selfish? Am I missing something?

          • Steve. November 15, 2013 at 8:17 AM

            There’s nothing wrong with your family! It’s just ego and all in their heads so how could you be susceptible? Susceptible to what exactly!

          • zapdmom November 15, 2013 at 9:22 AM

            So Steve, how could anyone be susceptible to any illness? You are a curious creature who has no logical understanding of the illness. Let alone the defiinitive data to support the “physicality” of the illness of Major Depressive Disorder. This disorder is more than just depression. It is just the one that science/medicine has placed on it.

          • Steve. November 15, 2013 at 11:10 AM

            Sorry you have missunderstood my sarcasm, i have suffered severe depression for over 23years, taken many meds and the only thing that brings me out is ect, so i would read peoples comments in the context they were meant and in comment to which post they reply.

          • Toma November 27, 2013 at 2:44 PM

            Correct.

          • Jeremy November 16, 2013 at 2:34 AM

            So what? God let’s you not be depressed because he likes you more you self centered dick?
            Sorry, that was my imaginary depression talking because i have a chemical imbalance in my brain, but it’s my fault because it’s not real. One day my mom puked on the floor crying trying to get a knife to stab herself with and her explanation was basically “nobody listens to her” and “she feels sad”. I wonder why…what do you think it was? Her imagination or a fucking medical condition?

            Go ahead and please have the audacity to respond with some of your bullshit, I’ll wait.

          • Jeremy November 16, 2013 at 2:43 AM

            Btw how ironically idiotic is it to disregard something that’s intangible and saying it’s not real when you are apparently spiritual….is your spirit tangible, if you eat sugar and a doctor says you have a higher risk of heart problems you can’t prove it more than you can prove the probability of having depression but I know damn well you wouldn’t take a risk of heart problemsabd take it with a grain of salt but if you would then you be to illogical to get any further point I make…

          • Lani November 18, 2013 at 10:42 AM

            It must be hard being so much better than everyone.

          • Barbara November 19, 2013 at 6:44 AM

            So, if you have a pre-disposition, then perhaps someday you will hit a long and dark depressive episode. Then I will be interested in hearing YOUR story, instead of your judgement of others. You just might not be as balanced and spiritual as you think you are. I;m sure your family would be very grateful … not to watch you go through the pain of depression, of course, but to gain some compassion. You give yourself credit for showing them some respect in your post but I tend to doubt that you are very respectful of their situation which is very sad for all involved, especially or you.

          • klc November 19, 2013 at 11:04 AM

            Tell me, which spiritual path is so devoid of empathy? Sounds more like you have issues with your family that you’ve built a superficial ‘philosophy’ around and less like balance and spirituality.

          • Toma November 27, 2013 at 3:21 PM

            I agree re: empathy. Our paths are long and full of awakenings. But it’s not about a philosophy, it’s about truth. The truth is that depression is caused by ego.

          • Makenna February 12, 2014 at 2:01 PM

            I suffered a severe traumatic brain injury which changed the chemical processes in brain. These chemical processes are the same processes that cause certain emotions. I have a great life. A great family. Nothing to complain of. And then, I was hit and I suffered from extreme depression. It wasn’t a CHOICE, nor was it out of “ego” or selfishness. If it WAS a choice, I wouldn’t have to live like this. It is scientifically proven that your brain IS responsible for causing “depression.” You obviously have no idea what depression is. It isn’t crying for a few hours and then being done and happy again. Next time you write an article, you should actually do your research instead of creating it merely based on your opinions.

          • divya April 3, 2014 at 12:18 PM

            makenna, no matter how much we try to state toma wrong! he has all these hundreds of comment on his stupid article! i think what he actually wanted has been given to him by our wasting our times to tell this “never been through even a minor depression” person that his opinion is i’m sorry to say but quite shitty!

          • Rich November 20, 2013 at 10:27 PM

            Toma, sadly you are an extremely ignorant person. If I had a broken leg would you say I’m selfish for not wanting to walk? Also I believe that you are the selfish one if your very family are affected by the disease yet you refuse to recognise it. It’s people like you that lead others to not talk about how their feeling due to your stigma. Do some research, listen to some of the many people who suffer from the disease including extremely successful and humble people like Stephen Fry and maybe then you may understand a bit more. Until then, I would keep your misguided views to yourself!

          • Toma November 27, 2013 at 3:23 PM

            This article is about the cause of the broken leg, not the broken leg itself.

          • Oliva November 25, 2013 at 5:42 AM

            Just because you’re highly prone to something doesn’t mean it will affect you. It just means that there’s a higher chance for you to be affected than the average person. Depression is a REAL illness. There’s a difference between saying you’re depressed when you’re sad and being clinically depressed. Clinical depression takes over your life, and you have no say in the matter. Despite efforts to fight it, the depression persists. It’s AWFUL, and this article is, quite frankly, insensitive.

          • William December 2, 2013 at 1:59 PM

            Two things…

            1) Just because you got lucky enough to dodge the family bullet does not mean that this illness does not exist. (BTW, you do know that being ‘prone’ to something does not mean you are 100% going to get it, don’t you?)

            2) Please post one piece of ‘scientific BS’. Science is fact. No BS in it.

            (I have a third one, but I learned a long time ago that trying to debate someone who chooses religion over reality is pointless.)

          • mandilouwho? December 19, 2013 at 10:04 AM

            OK that is one of the most ignorant and frustrating things I ever hear people say is well look at me I don’t have this or this person went thru this and this didn’t happen. Guess what my family is prone to depression and crazinessbon both sides and I do suffer too so there. I found this out after years of wondering what was wrong. Do I think I should be affected way more and way worse since its on both side, yes. Do I feel I’m strong for continuing to fight, yes. Do I wish it would go away, YES! But I do deal with it everyday and stay as healthy as I possibly can for me. And btwI am very spiritual too that’s what keeps it to a minimum maybe so what’s your point?

          • Ali December 21, 2013 at 5:30 AM

            I have been surrounded by depressed people all my life and i’ve been pushed to be strong for all of them, all the time. to the point that I have given up on all my hopes, dreams and desires. I think I have the right to call depressed people selfish but i wouldnt. some of them can be but some of them are not selfish people. I think your articles are biased due to your own horrible experiences, and i wouldnt blame you for having this perspective.

            All these posts disgreeing with you are people who only know the “depressed persons” side, they dont know how it feels to be the one who uses all their emotional and mental strength to help these depressed people and live life on everyone’s behalf. To bear with hurtful words of depressed people, to see them destroy happiness and ruin holidays and yet you’d have to keep on trying and trying to make everything right, and despite everything they wont trust you or believe that you love them. I know alot about how it feels to support people in depression. and how selfish they can be at times. but its not always the case. i’m pretty sure that I have or will eventually become a victim to depression myself. and it would be depression inflicted by those who i tried to help. All depressed people would say “it hurts so much to constantly hear voices in your head”, but none of them have any idea how much it hurts to hear REAL voices screaming new and creative hurtful words of people you love and REAL emotional pain drawn from these situations AND to have the strength to tell yourself “its alright, they’re just unwell, they still love me, and even if they dont I will find a way to help them and make them realize i love them”. And to have this happen EVERY WEEK for the rest of your life. They were perhaps traumatized by a bully or a horrible father for a few years, but they BECOME that BULLY and that FATHER for the rest of thier lives. is that even justifiable? Do they really want that? well maybe the selfish ones do. but most of them, I dont think so, they need help to realize what they are doing and how to stop it.

            It takes more strength and it hurts more to fight the current than to simply let go and be taken away by it. HENCE people who support depressed people suffer more and need to be stronger (like me and you). And it is these depressed people who eventually cause their children, their brothers, their mothers and they’re loved ones to break and fall into depression themselves. If they dont get help or try to fix this YES they are selfish, after knowing how they’re causing their suffering to spread. But if they are trying to become better then you need to give them respect.

            Which is why i believe that you, Tomo, were hurt a lot by people around you suffering from depression, but you cant come in terms with your suffering by simply saying “they were selfish, and they are all selfish”. That statement in itself shows that you still blame them and wished they had never been depressed, i.e. you are bieng selfish by denying that these people had suffered involuntarily. Your saying that your loved ones hurt you and themselves on purpose.

            Tomo, i can relate to your situation, more than anyone here probably, but this isnt right from any perspective. its downright prejudice. its generalization to say all mental illness comes from selfishness. It does not. maybe sometimes it is a factor but its not always the case.

          • Right. December 25, 2013 at 7:31 AM

            Hooray for you, go stand on a mountain with that ego you talk about and yell it to the world. We care.

          • Anon December 28, 2013 at 4:06 PM

            So apparently I’m just selfish by putting on a fake smile every day so nobody knows how sad I am, and spending endless hours at night feeling like utter shit. I haven’t told anyone and nobody suspects a thing. So explain to me how that is selfish

          • Gracias Muchacho December 28, 2013 at 4:53 PM

            I haven’t read the article but if I had to guess I’d say it’s selfish of you to continue harboring your demented mentality rather than letting it go. Not to mention suicide is a really fucking selfish thing to do; you have to be a really selfish prick to seriously consider it.

          • Leah January 4, 2014 at 11:18 PM

            ITS NOT A MATTER OF SELFISHNESS. !!!!!!! I have had suicidal thoughts and it’s not because I want to make my family unhappy!!! It’s because I’m so depressed I feel like there’s nothing to look forward to in my life. It’s people like you who are selfish.

          • Gracias Muchacho January 10, 2014 at 3:49 PM

            There you go, you’re only considering your life and not the life of your family and friends. You’re only convincing me even more that depression is selfish. YOU have nothing to look forward to in YOUR life. You haven’t even considered the impact that it would have on your family and friends. It seems to me that you have to be pretty far up your own ass to be considering killing yourself.
            For the record I’m not selfish; I’m just angry, apathetic, and objective.

          • Natalie March 15, 2014 at 8:41 AM

            I think the word “selfish” has taken on too personal a tone. It’s not a direct selfish relationship between depression and your actions, but it’s undeniable that it is selfish. When anyone around me is depressed, and when I have been depressed, it is all ME ME ME. You see it in hindsight and as involuntary as it was because I was unaware, I can no longer allow myself to fling my needs on others. That is unselfish depression.

          • The cakes December 31, 2013 at 4:48 PM

            I would say to thank god for that because you could just as easily be the most imbalanced and the most spiritual! Shame on youi!

          • Science January 25, 2014 at 5:19 AM

            Just because you’re highly prone to it, doesn’t mean you’ll have it. I have a history of mental illness in my family. Everyone else if fine. I suffer from chronic depression. There are times where I feel better, but I still deal with lack of energy, suicidal ideation, and feelings of hopelessness. I’ve tried everything. I exercise, I have supportive friends and family, I eat right and even cut out gluten which was making me sick, I have a job and am going to school in order to get a career in what I love, and even spiritual. So, by a lot of people’s thinking here I should be fine right? Yet I still suffer from the debilitating side of major depression.

            I really hope you don’t tell any of your loved ones your ignorant bullshit. I’m sure it doesn’t help them any.

          • divya April 3, 2014 at 11:57 AM

            toma, the only person selfish here is u :) u’d call a girl whose been badly raped for months ! u’ve never really heard of the incidents such as a girl being badly raped by a gang..beaten and even gotten a steel rod put inside of her through her vagina all the way up and then finally after all that thrown out naked on the road in front of severalllll people ! such things do happen! and if the girl survives and gets into severe major depression without it being her choice ..her family disowned her because of what happened and then finally she tried to end her life…u call her selfish ! wow toma i truly admire u ! and anybody after reading this still says one can handle it and get over it is some human being!

          • Angie April 12, 2014 at 2:31 AM

            Hi – I am new to this thread – I’m curious about something – I hope it will not insult you to ask how old you are? You look very young in your photo – so I’m just curious. Thanks.

          • Leah January 4, 2014 at 11:13 PM

            Exactly my point—it’s not a controllable thing!!! I can think positive but it doesn’t do anuthing!! I have suffered from clinical depression since I was 12 and I don’t want to hear that it is selfish of me to have suffered it. You don’t get it.

        • Reply Katie October 21, 2013 at 4:22 PM

          Depression is not something you can help, it comes from a chemical imbalance in the brain, leaving the person with many different results. Many people feel nothing, they are completely numb, then suddenly, everything comes like a tidal wave. Sometimes that tidal wave can last, causing self-hatred, and things like that. But my main point is that depression isn’t selfish, though the chemical imbalance may make the person act selfish, or not noticing of others struggles, it is not something you can control with being busy, because you feel nothing most of the time. (well, in my case) I disagree with this passage because it is like telling someone with severe anxiety (which is also a symptom of depression) that what they are freaking out about is no big deal, when in reality, it is keeping them from living. I was browsing when I found this and I was, first of all, offended, and second of all, sorry because that is how you see people like me. I just hope that you don’t see people not feeling the hell of reality, yet feeling it at the same time, as selfish.

        • Reply mary November 21, 2013 at 11:47 AM

          you say this because you don’t understand, i am 16 and i have depression, i self harm, am suicidal, but i tell no one because i don’t want them to be affected by me. i don’t kill myself because i don’t want to hurt the people i love even if they are the ones hurting me.

          • April November 24, 2013 at 3:33 PM

            Mary, please go to your school counselor and ask for help, especially if you feel your family would not be supportive. If you don’t feel the school counselor is helpful or empathetic look for someone else. A youth pator would be a great resource for you. Even if you can’t drive you can call him/her or reach out online. Keep looking till someone can help guide you. You are a valuable person with a purpose. God knows every nuance of your heartache. Ask him to help guide you to the right people, resources. I too suffered depression at your age and told noone. When I got caught crying one night by my older brother who was home on college break he was judgmental and I had always idolized him so it was very hurtful. Its important to go to someone who has your best interest at heart and who knows what they’re talking about.God bless you. I will be praying for you.

        • Reply Zim November 23, 2013 at 10:40 PM

          FUCK YOU. I am clinically depressed, fucking suicidal, and fucking self harm. the fuck you trying to say that I don’t appreciate my fucking shit! WELL I FUCKING DO OKAY. I FUCKING APPRECIATE EVERYTHING I HAVE. I just fucking… God damn it this really pissed me off. HOW THE FUCK DO YOU EXPECT ME TO BE “NICE” WHEN YOU’RE TELLING ME TO JUST GET OVER MYSELF. I FUCKING AM A SLAVE TO MY FAMILY. WHATEVER THE FUCK THEY WANT I FUCKING GET IT. NO QUESTIONS ASKED. I NEVER SHOW MY DEPRESSION AROUND OTHER PEOPLE BECAUSE OF FUCKTARDS LIKE YOU. So fuck off.

          • Anthony March 26, 2015 at 9:48 PM

            I agree man, this guy is a complete idiot. He doesn’t understand there are real chemical and scientific reasons behind depression. Some people in the world are selfish but this guy is just a complete fucking asshat and so is everyone else on here who agrees with him. You (the writer) are a complete self-righteous dick bag.

        • Reply liz November 29, 2013 at 1:33 PM

          i have depression I’m not selfish you are criticizing because you are a heartless human being and you just don’t understand how out minds work there is so much stupid on one person it really doesn’t add up!

        • Reply Tony December 30, 2013 at 9:43 AM

          There are those who suicide with the guts to muster the MALICE in their hearts to PUNISH those who have mistreated them from the beginning of their lives (often parents), when instead they should’ve been loving them. They know FULL well the emotional pain inflicted upon the survivors will act as a type of “solace” or “striking back” because the pain they’ll suffer for the REST of their mortal lives; with the intent to make them feel as horrid and isolated as they drove the victim to be. This happens by the mechanism of not only 1) arousing the stigma of the mere subject of suicide to the survivors, but also by 2) by making it previously CLEAR that THEY drove the person to kill themselves–and will it upon them to despair with that knowledge that they cannot “un-think.” And, there is some evidence that this has happened. Years of counseling of even the most begrudged scrooge of a survivor can BREAK them emotionally, physically and mentally, which is “justice” to the dead, not selfishness. The evidence of this came from forensic psychologists studying Columbine, yet never really saw the light of day–notice the “jock” victims they decided to kill while looking others in the face and sparing their lives because they had no “beef” with them. Instead, the shooters knew the victims families would always suffer with “what could have been,” but was never fully realized. The fact that the shooters were bullied by their children never seemed to cross the minds of their families. This avarice is commonly called “corruption of blood” or “vendetta” in Sicily.

        • Reply Truth January 3, 2014 at 1:32 AM

          I once thought that people with depression just needed to get on with it until I suffered severe depression. Mine came on by probably doing and giving too much to others and not enough to myself! No matter what I tried nothing worked until the day, totally unable to even speak my GP started treatment. Even he was surprised I took the anti-depressants. I still battled on with things until some in my medical team called it quits, and although the last thing I wanted was to go on a Disability Pension I found I had little choice. I have another practitioner I see and she says people with depression need to go out and do things for others. To my surprise she didn’t with me. It was the complete opposite. I wanted to go and help my mother – ‘no’ came the reply your too sick. To keep my kind more positive I went back to study against the desire of my medical team. Believe me it is really tough going and sometimes I think I’m not going to make it, but with my steely determination I do. This has not cured my depression. I still suffer from depression so deeply I sometimes cannot speak, no longer wanting to live plagues me. I’ve changes my mind about depression. It is an illness. I’m sure for quite a number of people doing something for another will be of benefit, but for some, we are just so exhausted because we’ve done so much for others, we have given so much our systems say ‘enough is enough’ and our minds turn off. For others their bodies may suffer physical illness as a response to ‘enough is enough’ but you think that it is ok for a body to do so, not a mind as though they are two totally separate things. Perhaps physical illness can be a response to stress, just like mental illness can be a response to stress.

          I still hate not being able to do much. I get so frustrated. I’ve always been a person so much on the go.

          And Tomo, it is not true that those in poorer countries don’t suffer from it. It is interesting that women in their 50’s and 60’s often do, no matter what culture they come from. It is called menopause. You should ask your mummy and your aunties about it. Or perhaps go to a female clinic and learn about it. Then you perhaps will stop posting absolute rot and garbage. You obviously have little understanding of the facts of life! So go and talk to your mummy about it, or perhaps speak to a person with some medical knowledge. You may learn something.

          However, my impression is that you are too young, arrogant and self-righteous to do that.

        • Reply simone January 7, 2014 at 7:14 AM

          well you seem like an illegal immigrant obviously wasn’t taught empathy no need to Havre feelings haven’t been bought up proper chase the gold coin none of you are actually psychologists are you no so how do you actually know how the human mind actually work just a bunch of novices of this society don’t get ill just work h don’t go off the rails just pay the fucking bills i’m a very strong women I’ve worked since I was sixteen been bought up in a broken home so ‘im not allowed to say i’m depressed of course its an illness its very bad for some nobody to make such an in accurate view

        • Reply pmz January 11, 2014 at 8:53 AM

          I agree with you. Depression is selfish. If you want to kill yourself, I would be happy to smash a hammer through your skull you sad pathetic fucks..

          • anon April 1, 2014 at 4:35 PM

            i am going to report your threatening comment .

          • divya April 3, 2014 at 12:25 PM

            lol u r so frustrated! one does not want to! such thoughts come to them…do most of the ppl fight such thoughts out,yes! ones who are not able to are not strong enough! your use of vocabulary is very interesting! i’m quite sure u or your family has not gone through severe depression! i have they or u never do because then u’d really get to know who’s selfish and insensitive here! and that’ll be sad :D

        • Reply Debra January 19, 2014 at 8:23 PM

          I do agree with you, but I think realizing that, gaining control of it, learning not to wallow, etc.. is something not everyone can do, especially when they’re young. To me, it’s more a weak/lazy thing than selfish.. unless they commit suicide. I’m speaking from personal experience, not books or other’s opinions. There’s been a few times that my kids were the only reason I didn’t give up. And that’s what it is. Feeling sorry for yourself, and wallowing in it, and weak. For me, the guilt always came because I hate when I get the “I don’t give a hoots” and get lazy. All of these things pass, but many never realize that. Just knowing that makes it easier to get through it, and less of an “event”. It’s just stress, when it rains it pours, truly.. but KNOWING that it will pass (or you’ll learn to deal with it) keeps you from feeling truly hopeless. I’ve seen people lose everything, with nothing on the horizon to start rebuilding with. Some jumped in the river, or turned into drunks.. gave up. Then there’s the strong who motor on.. (I worked at a casino and saw it alot unfortunately) It irritates me when people milk it. I get fed up and say, get over yourself.. like I say to myself. That’s another aspect.. support.. someone to push you to shake it off. Then there’s hormone imbalances, etc that are true conditions that can alter your mood.. dopamine as well.. sun..I”ve been down lately because I feel kind of jaded.. getting old, menopause, and pissed at myself for being so lazy. Think of the gym every day, and never go, etc. For the moment, I get a buzz, and vent to someone like you :) I know it’ll pass, as soon as I get motivated. If I told my friends I was depressed, they’d laugh and think I’m full of it, because I’m always laughing and upbeat.. or passionate and peeved :) That’s because when I’m downer Debbie, I stay home and deal with it… like everyone should until they can at least play nice.. in my opinion. Not everyone is honest with themselves, or has a tough attitude, or maybe even the intelligence to understand what they need to do to get over painful things I guess.. And there are some that have legit reasons to be down for awhile.. the brain is a funny thing.. and chemicals, etc can be a factor, so I hate to say ALL are lazy and weak, but for the most part, yep. Suck it up princess. Motor on. Keep moving and it’ll pass. Wallow in it, and you create your own little hell.. DO something about it. (says the chick in her pajamas all day haha) Anywho, I enjoyed your article. Straight up truth for a change, smart, quick, enjoyable read.. and a refreshing honesty on the topic. I’m lovin’ you right now! lol We need to quit pampering everyone. Don’t even get me started on the whole “politially correct” bull lol And then there’s the drug companies, and doctors pushing meds.. that screw people up that were just having a bad week.. It’s a huge problem, and more people need to speak up as you did.
          I’ll leave you before you gouge your eyes out over my rant and poor grammar lol Thanks again.. and for the reminder to get my head out of my ass.

        • Reply colin sanderson February 2, 2014 at 2:15 AM

          I can understand why people find depression hard to believe. It is something you have to experience yourself to be truly educated on the matter, even so when you are feeling well its hard to believe that you were feeling that way.

          People seem to believe that computers can run slow lose files and crash but if you took then apart you would find nothing wrong with them. Its the binary code them millions of tiny connections so it is physical but so minute and complicated.

          The brain is even more complicated you have billions of connections and a complexity even in the least intelligent person who tend to think in a very quick straightforward way, they are less confused by things, and have no self doubt, so think very quickly, they are good in emergences, but not so good on long term strategies. They would have great problems understanding true depression

          To make the brain even more complicated it relies on chemicals, hormone and neurotransmitters, they are adjusted to make us act naturally to give us the best chance of survival, like a computer that shuts itself down to save energy. Our brains can go into what feels like an hibernation energy saving mode. It would be very useful in times of shortages sleeping all day burnes very few calories. whatever the reason it is not a useful adaptation in todays world.

          The conscious mind or what people call willpower fight against the tiredness and slow thinking. For a time willpower can win and it appears from the outside you are nearly normal but you can usually see in the eyes of a depressed person. One depressed person can spot another even if they appear to everyone else to be the life and soul of the party.

          I don’t talk about skiing because I have never skied but I have seen people ski so any comments would have no authority.

        • Reply Benjamin March 20, 2014 at 7:28 AM

          I have suicidal depression. I don’t care about my family, God, eating, or even drinking. Depression is an illness that can lead to PTSD. Do you think that I chose to be depressed. Being selfish? That is stupid! It is not my fault that I was bullied and had lots of stress! Now I have to worry about the fact that I won’t lynch myself the next day! Your statement is so wrong in many levels.

        • Reply Why am I judged? March 30, 2014 at 3:40 AM

          How dare you say depression is selfishness!! How would you feel if you were depressed like me? I didn’t choose to be depressed. Maybe you and the others who said that should try being considerate for once! When I saw the things on this website criticizing people for being depressed I started to cry. Maybe you should try thinking before you speak for once in your life!

          • Natalie March 30, 2014 at 8:22 AM

            The way I see it…and keep in mind it’s just an opinion..is it’s pretty selfish to tell someone that they should not dare broadcast their opinion because of your feelings.

        • Reply divya April 3, 2014 at 9:42 AM

          well if u think that depression is selfish u’ve never been through depression so dont try to give out statements when ur not even completely aware of anything! plus at times life pretty much sucks for people ..financial problems ..health problems…living in a place full of judgemental people and parents who never get u! no friends! everyone telling u to do something or the other…seeing the ones u love and not being able to do nything about! there are times in life when nothing is right from any angle! what do u expect then? the person to be great full to god for giving him complete senses and or have gratitude about the fact that food is still available to that person or just the fact that he not dead and that there are other people with more problems! i have gratitude and i’ve thankful for all this for yearssssss now but at the end hello? i’m a human …not god …and i did try to be perfect but it does kill u inside knowing that u r a good person…never done or wanted wrong for anybody and still all this is happening to me! one’s helpless …no one who’s gonna listen to u …support u or understand u ! seeing ur parents in pain when they r such good humans! one can b strong for a long time miss but not forever …he/she isn’t selfish …not crying out loud that oh my god i have depression…i go through it alone cause i dont want to disturb my family anymore than they already are! is that being selfish? or is just making a statement such as depression is selfish selfish? u see for urself! the one going through REAL depression can only say something about it ..not u or anybody else! i ont mean to be rude but just really want u to open up ur mind and eyes and not make such statements…it just might hurt certain people !

        • Reply Johnathan Murphy April 7, 2014 at 6:56 AM

          Not all forms of depression is selfish, and you dont and cant relate to all forms of depression… so if you are not a depression doctor or atleast in school…then stop telling us how smart you think you are.

        • Reply Tay April 9, 2014 at 1:54 PM

          Okay me being psychically and emotional abused as a child makes me selfish? I’m sorry I have been damaged when I was a child; you know the very abuser said the same things to me. “You just want attention, you are selfish” and continued to beat the shit out of me. So yeah… people have reasons why they think like that. It isn’t as simple to stop being depressed. Not when people literally broke everything; it’s a long road of recovery. Don’t be ignorant.

          • Natalie April 9, 2014 at 10:42 PM

            You being abused, like me, was out of our control. Out of our abusers’ control, really, and a reality. It is selfish to take offense in every perceived invalidation of our hurt, and to navigate life looking for any special treatment based on the tragedy of our stories.

          • wearewalkingdead June 17, 2014 at 3:47 PM

            So basically you’re saying, “I dealt with it so suck it up?”. Idiot.

        • Reply Jo Aldridge April 9, 2014 at 3:04 PM

          I agree with your perception being that it is selfish toward others, but that is really only a selfish opinion.
          Why?

          Because sooner or later, someone [like me] has to be selfLESS and treat a selfish person in a selfless way to show them the “right” way.

          Please consider how “selfish” this post would appear to someone who is at risk of suicide.

        • Reply Katherine April 25, 2014 at 10:51 AM

          I agree that depression is selfish. I also believe that it is real. It only becomes selfish when an individual chooses to stay in that mindset for a prolonged period of time. People fall on hard times and they may get depressed, and they either can stay in their own self pity, and use it as an excuse to do nothing – or they can pick themselves up and move forward and continue to live their life. But I do feel that your statement saying “If it can not be seen or touched or identified by sight or spirit in the real word” is somewhat questionable. For example – a “conscience”. It to can not be seen or touched or identified by sight or spirit in the real word. But it is a fact that a conscience is real and most individuals have a conscience and there are others who lack one. Such as sociopaths and psychopaths. Ruthless individuals who violate others, con and scam, and even attempt to destroy a persons character and reputation, simply because they enjoy the suffering and humiliation of others. These people feel no guilt or remorse for the lies they tell and lives they destroy whatsoever. When first meeting a sociopath one would never suspect the person had no conscience because they cannot see it outwardly. People who do not have a conscience – pretend to care, and lying comes as natural as berthing to them. They do whatever they feel is necessary to manipulate (usually a caring, kind and empathic person) in order to get what they need. They use the person and discard them like trash. By the time the person realizes what is going on – it’s too late.. And they find their lives in turmoil, and are drained emotionally, mentally, financially, and physically. They attempt to put their life back in order, with a high chance of failure. The person that caused them all this trouble. Does not feel bad or sorry and has no regrets. In fact they will blame the victims and vilify them. Sociopaths are known to be able to pass lie detector test. They do not have care about anyone. They have no conscience. We cannot see a conscience (or the lack of one from an individual who doesn’t have one) but we know that a conscience does exist – and in the case of sociopaths – it does not exist. I think your writing was informative and good. This just my opinion regarding your statement about “if it can not be seen or touched or identified by sight or spirit in the real world”. There are many things that can’t be seen or touched but they are in fact real.

          I am an open minded person. And I like to try to view everyone’s personal opinions and try to understand why they may feel that way, and I try to relate.

        • Reply dez323 May 6, 2014 at 3:55 AM

          Fuck off some people are actually depressed and not because there selfish. Some people had thing happen to them to make them depressed and it was not a choice they made

        • Reply Laura V May 19, 2014 at 10:31 PM

          Depression can come from feeling helpless about the entire world.. not just over selfish matters. All of the pain and suffering in the world can make someone depressed.

        • Reply Izzy May 21, 2014 at 3:04 PM

          I disagree. I really don’t know why people call depression selfish, and why some people feel so angry about it. I have been fighting with depression for the last 10 years of my life. Even when I was diagnosed, I argued with the Doctor telling him that Depression for me was in no way possible. I had nothing to be depressed about. From the outside, people that know me, and people that don’t know me, would say that I appear to be an extremely upbeat person. Even at my age (50 years old) I love playing jokes on people. I known that I am, with out a doubt, one of the most fortune people around . I’ve been married for 28 years to a wonderful man who has loved me with all of his heart. I have grown children, that I am extremely close to, who tell me every day how much they appreciate me as a mother. I know that I’ve created a wonderful life for myself.. For me, there is a difference between just having sadness”, and being “Depressed”. Being sad comes from maybe a loved one dying, or a fire taking your home. There is actually a reason for normal sadness. Depression on the other hand doesn’t make sense. You wake up going about your day and suddenly. . . . there is a sadness that just hits you. There is no reason behind it. I just know that I feel sad. I know that it’s depression when everything is really wonderful in my life, and my feelings don’t reflect that. In my case, about two years ago, I started having several seizures through out the day. The doctors did many tests on my brain and have noted that I have many lesions (injuries) on my brain (Hundreds of them). In my case, these lesions have caused a chemical imbalance in my brain. My serotonin and dopamine levels don’t work together correctly. There are many reasons for this imbalance. I know that, exercise and a good diet helps tremendously. Take some vitamin B12. It really can make a difference. Good luck to those of you who fight depression on a daily basis. I know for a fact that Depression is real. Unless a person has had depression, it really is hard to understand.

        • Reply Noneya Business March 25, 2015 at 8:13 PM

          I definitely agree with you. Being depressed over people who didn’t give a shit about you is a waste of time and it is also somewhat selfish because you are being sad in front of those who actually want you and love you for who you are. I was used by the people who I thought were my friends, people I trusted most and i realized the reason why I was so sad all the time, was because I surrounded myself with such assholes and users who really didn’t give a shit about my feelings. I did not know how painful it was for my family to see me sad until I took my eyes off and me and my situation and looked at them. I have been happier since I let these users out of my life, sometimes I relapse, but then I remember the people who truly love me and I am able to tune out my negative thoughts.

      • Reply Halle Bowen July 19, 2013 at 5:06 AM

        I TOTALLY agree. I’ve had depression for a long time. But I was choosing to make it worse. And it got worse. Then, I quit having pity and stopped making excuses and got help. Guess what? I’m great. No meds or therapy.

        • Reply Jerry Skinner October 25, 2013 at 7:57 AM

          My son said he is unhappy long time and has had suicidal thoughts. He is 18 and just finished high school. Where can he find help?

          • eve ramos October 31, 2013 at 10:51 AM

            If he’s not on any medication, take him to a doctor to see what could be causing these suicidal thoughts. Maybe counseling could benefit him. I wish you and your son the best of luck with this!

          • dretta November 14, 2013 at 9:43 AM

            Send him to a PSYCHOLOGIST. They help, but without pushing medications on you at all.. They are like advanced guidance counselors. When I was severely depressed my psychologist helped me turn my life around

          • zapdmom November 15, 2013 at 7:10 AM

            While psychologists “cannot” prescribe you medication, pushing is really the wrong word. Maybe you have had a negative experience with that. Personally I saw a psychologist and social worker before I ever went to a psychiatrist. I only felt partially well. I accepted I was just meant to feel crappy my whole life. It wasn’t until years later (about 5) that I was worsening and becoming extremely lethargic and quiet. After seeing a psychiatrist when things were really bad, I was diagnosed with major depressive disorder. He told me I was curable. After a year of going off meds twice and each time relapsing back into that depression, I looked for another doctor. Unfortunately for almost 20 years I believed I would be better after being on meds for that length of time (equal to the amount of time I felt depressed) I was still depressed most of the time. I am still on meds. Without them, I know I would be dead. You have no idea how bad it feels, how much you cry because you cannot stop. I never did any of this in front of family or friends. In fact I stayed away and hid myself in a corner … crying incessantly. Not eating, not caring about anything or anyone. A part of me still hopes SOMEDAY there will be a cure. But until then I will try to understand the people who cannot take the time to understand me.

          • Kylie December 1, 2013 at 1:14 PM

            Take him to his doctor who could refer him to a psychiatrist and a counselor.

      • Reply Lou July 22, 2013 at 11:06 PM

        I think this is a massively over-simplified, insensitive and misguided article. NOT a helpful message to send to people suffering from acute depression. Telling them they are selfish is akin to implying they have 100% control over their crippling health problem, and they can simply wish it away. Would you tell someone they can cure their cancer by being less selfish? Depression is a DISEASE. In some cases it is a symptom of thyroid, vitamin deficiency and other serious health problems. Your sentiment is cruel and poorly expressed. :-(

        • Reply Nick July 23, 2013 at 2:34 AM

          I think it should be clarified that, if depressive symptoms are in fact due to “thyroid, vitamin deficiency or other serious health problems” then they are not considered psychiatric illness. In these cases, the patient should have the underlying medical condition treated in order to resolve his symptoms. “Major depressive disorder,” for example, is not a diagnosis that would be made if a person’s hypothyroidism can account for the symptoms.

          • Sam Huff August 17, 2013 at 1:33 AM

            Attempts to find physical reasons for depression are much less frequent that ideally. Much easier to treat the symptoms. Shrinks are unlikely to check for physical causes.

          • Marianne October 4, 2013 at 11:34 AM

            Actually, if one goes to a psych. MD and not a psychologist aka shrink, the psych MD will order various medical tests to rule out a medical condition before simply treating the symptoms of depression. And if for some reason, the MD does not. Then I suggest requesting tests or see another MD.

          • newzbug November 24, 2013 at 8:17 AM

            @Sam Huff, if your words are true, that means that GPs will not understand the depth of a mental illness. Yep, your words are so wrong.

        • Reply J August 12, 2013 at 6:38 AM

          by the authors definition of depression ” It is something that exists in people’s minds. It can not be seen or touched or identified by sight or spirit in the real word. It’s all in people’s heads,” happiness doesn’t exist either!

          • akimitsu August 23, 2013 at 9:01 AM

            If you want to get technical, all of your senses are controlled by and perceived in your mind. Using the logic that depression is only in your head is, therefore, completely true — and everything else that you see, hear, touch, taste and smell is also only in your head. Does that make it any less valid?

            There are many types of depression, and I think almost every singular case of depression is unique. It’s a mysterious state of being, to be depressed. If it were easily describable, it might be easier to get help and/or help oneself, or not to become depressed in the first place.

            I ended up on this article hoping it might actually have some good insight, and read it completely open-minded, but there was nothing there I hadn’t considered before.
            I don’t consider myself a person who feels self-pity. I have dealt with depression so long that I’ve become angry with it, and do everything to battle it. I have good self esteem, emotional and intellectual intelligence, and see more positive than negative in most things. I do not sit and wallow in my own bad feelings, or think bad things about others or myself.

            In fact, what I was originally looking for was perhaps someone else who also suffers depression that does not have necessarily negative thoughts or feelings of worthlessness. I’m kind of sorry that I read this article, because its lack of compassion is confusing.

            The depression that I suffer from is, as far as I know, not caused by any particular event in my life. It is not through laziness, self-loathing, overthinking — there is nothing that can be pinpointed. It is mainly a feeling of restlessness and emptiness. I keep going every day because I tell myself that each day is good, and every day I am getting better, but after years I had to admit to myself that I haven’t gotten better. There is no enjoyment in anything anymore, as much as I want there to be. All of the things I used to love, I have no feeling for anymore, except the feeling that I want to love them again, but somehow can’t seem to.

            It’s an emotional apathy that no amount of helping others, self-improvement, changing life activities, changing diet (I am on a permanent organic, paleo diet), getting enough exercise, socializing, being self-sufficient, — no amount of ANYTHING has seemed to help. For a long time, I told myself it was helping. Every thing that I changed, I just KNEW it was working, but I was lying to myself. The hardest thing was for me to be honest and finally take notice that at the end of everything, every day, there was only emptiness and somewhere a small desire not to feel this way.

            If you are still replying to comments on this article, I would love to hear any input you might have. It’s best to go into things open-minded, so if you could spare any time, perhaps I -am- being selfish somehow, and still do not see it. Thanks.

          • Toma September 4, 2013 at 9:22 PM

            Hi akimitsu. Sorry it’s taken me so long to respond. Yours was the first comment after starting my recent hiatus, but I’ve had you in mind. You’ve covered so much about what you do, but you’ve said nothing of what you believe.

          • Ayla September 14, 2013 at 10:23 PM

            Can you also tell me what you would say to a child that has been sexually abused? Neglected? And are depressed? Tell them they are being selfish?

          • Toma September 14, 2013 at 10:43 PM

            A similar question to this has been asked previously. Children need nothing more than love. I would make that child feel loved completely and unconditionally. There is nothing more effective.

          • Sean September 15, 2013 at 12:04 AM

            Okay, so you would love this child as much as possible. There is no doubt about that. But when this abused child looks up at you completely bewildered and confused and in pain and asks, “But Daddy, why am I so depressed and in pain? I don’t understand. I am so scared all the time? Please help me! Please explain!” You would then reply, “son, none of those feelings are real. They are all in your head. You are depressed because you are selfish. Go outside and play in that beautiful sunny weather and look at those beautiful trees. You know, if you were doing your chores the way you should be you wouldn’t have time to think about your pain and if you did chores all day long you wouldn’t have any pain at all! But you are being selfish. This is why you feel so awful. And what you feel is all in your head. Part of your big imagination! But remember, daddy loves you!”

            That is essentially what you conveyed to us in this article. Would it be any different for a fragile child? I mean, isn’t it the same thing?

          • Toma September 16, 2013 at 8:52 AM

            Despite this article, it’s unlikely I would have that exact conversation with anybody, and certainly not with a child.

            I do have one small regret with this article, and it is the way in which I wrote it. While I still firmly believe in the underlying message, I do wish I had written it with a slightly softer tone so that what I was trying to convey came across more clearly. The way I wrote it, and in particular the title, seem to invoke so much emotion that the message gets lost completely. Your comment is evidence of this.

          • The cakes December 31, 2013 at 5:21 PM

            This guy is a genuine ignormanous!

            I do not think he fully even answered your question!
            September 16, 2013 at 8:52 AM#

            Despite this article, it’s unlikely I would have that exact conversation with anybody, and certainly not with a child.

            I hate to inform him but this was the article that he wrote so it was the conversation that he had with all of us not knowing our ages or what issues we may have had! I see him a man with no compassion; who is uncaring and should never give any more talks about depression! He does not apologize or tell anyone how sorry he is that they have had do endure some of the things that some of these people had! In fact, he probably should never have any children!; just in case as we would not want to see any more children messed up than are are already!

            September 16, 2013 at 8:52 AM#

            Despite this article, it’s unlikely I would have that exact conversation with anybody, and certainly not with a child.

            I do have one small regret with this article, and it is the way in which I wrote it. While I still firmly believe in the underlying message, I do wish I had written it with a slightly softer tone so that what I was trying to convey came across more clearly. The way I wrote it, and in particular the title, seem to invoke so much emotion that the message gets lost completely. Your comment is evidence of this.

          • Jen October 5, 2013 at 12:32 PM

            You mention in your article about going back to the happy childhood days. I suppose my selfish self should go back to the memories of the many times I was on my knees performing oral sex on a man and then asking me “if I wanted fucking salt and pepper on it” when I told him it didn’t taste good after he asked. Or the other molester her liked licking me many times, or the several men who fondled me. Or, I could always think about the happy times watching my mom almost get killed as a young teen, the moving from home to home and worrying about having food to eat or those absolutely fantastic times of getting my ass kicked by my stepmom. Wow! Thanks for telling me to stop being so selfish about this constant state of depression for about 26 years. I will go ahead and think about that happy childhood for you.

          • divya April 3, 2014 at 12:30 PM

            u would do that and that’s gr8! but some children are not so privileged to be so loved! and mind it they are not selfish!

          • akimitsu September 22, 2013 at 10:53 AM

            I’m not 100% sure I understand what you’re saying, so I apologize if this response isn’t what you were getting at.
            I believe that depression exists for all sorts of different reasons, and is different for every person. Perhaps what, from an outside point of view, can look like “selfishness” is just a symptom of depression. It is a self-defeating disease. I feel that expecting someone to use their thoughts/change their thought pattern to stop their depression is equivalent to expecting cancerous cells to not only stop being cancerous, but to start producing healthy, normal cells.

            There is, IMO, a very big, hard to explain difference between feeling depressed and having depression (as a disease). One can lead to the other, and they can both exist at the same time in one person, but they are different things. I don’t know if you have ever felt truly depressed, or suffered from depression. I hope you haven’t, because I wouldn’t wish it upon anyone. Trying to help someone understand what depression feels like is like explaining empathy to someone who has never felt it. People with depression CAN come off as selfish, but that is a symptom, not a cause.

          • Toma September 22, 2013 at 9:26 PM

            Thanks. I was more-so asking what you believe in and about life. God? No God? Life’s meaning? The definition of happiness? That sort of thing.

          • akimitsu September 26, 2013 at 1:57 PM

            Ah, got it. I believe there is something much greater than human beings, beyond what our minds can comprehend. I believe that whatever it is, it is benevolent, but also in a way most likely enigmatic to the human mind. I think that kindness is more important than anything. Beyond that, I can’t claim to know or believe in anything because my understanding is inherently limited. What about you?

          • Toma September 28, 2013 at 7:55 AM

            I believe that peace is found by serving God, and chaos is found by serving yourself.

          • Louise November 27, 2013 at 11:25 PM

            …oh yeah Toma, you are right…

          • Nadia September 17, 2013 at 8:37 PM

            AMEN!

          • Katie September 29, 2013 at 11:00 PM

            Agreed! I don’t see why people even care about his opinion, he isn’t proving anything Scientifically. He is stating his opinion through a blog, and throwing in some “statistics”. He is confusing sadness with depression. I don’t think he has ever been exposed to mental illness, but I have first hand. My aunt had Bipolar Disorder, and the severity was devastating. She killed herself in March 2012, making light of mental illness because you think it’s a “mindset, or selfishness” is irresponsible as well as ignorant.

        • Reply girl August 13, 2013 at 12:39 PM

          Completely agree. This article might be helpful for people who are on the verge of finally overcoming depression, and just need a final kick of “tough love” to make it over the hump…other than that, every sentiment mentioned in this article…I can only imagine exacerbating existing mood disorder. Not saying that all depressed people need to simply be “babied” but I like your word choice of “misguided”

        • Reply boulton jeanette September 4, 2013 at 3:34 AM

          Lou,
          I agree with you you! Very insensitive, egoist & arrogant!!! Depression is not about being selfish.

      • Reply Lawerence frazier July 30, 2013 at 12:03 AM

        unbelievably shallow

      • Reply Mily August 6, 2013 at 4:27 AM

        This article just shows your utter ignorance about depression. The body mind and brain are connected. So depression is NOT about just thinking positively. Chemical imbalances have a major role to play. Also, in developing countries depression exists but it isn’t diagnosed and many of them end up committing suicide. Coming from a developing country myself I know about it.

      • Reply den August 9, 2013 at 8:29 AM

        You haven’t a clue you might have seen people go through it but that doesn’t make you an expert on the topic. Depression is different for everyone. Some of the ‘happiest’ people I know are suffering from it. But they don’t go complainin about it. Why? Because they don’t want to be annoying others with their problems yeah they are very selfish by doing that aren’t they? Unless you know what goes on or has gone on in the backrounds of people’s lives that have depression don’t claim to know better than the professionals you haven’t any idea what your talking about. Not one idea.I am one of those people with it for years and I’ve not had it easy but yet it’s only recently anyone knew I had it they only found out because it came up in discussion I can’t help I have it but i’m not being selfish I never was I work through it like everyone else tries to so if it was selfishness I guess someone would have realised before now don’t you think Wait I’m sure you’ll have an answer you already know everything don’t you doctor :-P

      • Reply kiddie kat August 17, 2013 at 2:30 PM

        I really don’t agree. You think that people put this on themselves? Is it really selfish to be bullied. No matter where you go you can actually hear people talking about you? Is it selfish that your dad abandoned you and actually told you that you’re worthless? Is it selfish that people get cheated on and then told that they “weren’t pretty enough to be with me”? It’s not selfish to take what people say to you seriously. Some people can’t help what people happen to them. So they shouldn’t be told there selfish for having a mental illness.

      • Reply mike August 26, 2013 at 10:26 AM

        I’m am a thirty year old male. Here’s a quick background. I didn’t have the best childhood. Nor the worst. But definitely family issues. After high school I did use prescription drugs for a few years. I don’t really recall ever being fully happy since I was a young kid. I definitely could get bye and feel somewhat happy. My point is I always had some mild form of depression. These past five years I’ve progressively gotten worse. About six months ago it hit me like a ton of bricks I almost wanted to leave work and quit. I fought to get through each day it only lasted that strongly for about a month. I was suicidal I can’t even explain the mental pain and stress this was. I couldnt sleep at nights. And I slept all day if I could. no intrest in anything that used to make me happy. And nothing selfish caused this yes I have normal stress and I drive for things. But please believe none of it was that important to make me feel the way I did. Stress absolutely contributes to the situation but this pain is on another level you can’t explain it to someone who hasn’t experienced it. I wouldn’t wish it on anyone. There was nothing I could do to make it go away. It did subside. But I’m back to the way I was just somewhat happy. So to the author please believe you are completely wrong. This is a extremely serious issue. This pain is debilitating. I now see how people commit suicide. So I don’t know why you writing about something u obviousy have no clue about. I’m no wuss either believe me if I could have changed it by thought I would have believe me it’s bigger than that.

      • Reply justin August 31, 2013 at 7:18 AM

        then hows it i fill a state of sadniss for my siblings and why it is im stressed over if my gf lives with hapiness what about the people who arent depressed cause they dont have evrything but the people who are depressed over others with no hapiness or love? i mean no disrespect to your paragraphs on this topic……but could you explain my point of view i try not to be selfish because i know the value of family friends and even a bed so please fill this lad with some help

      • Reply Susanna Marie Gomez September 9, 2013 at 1:39 AM

        You are a total idiot. Depression is an organic disorder. If you understood anything at all, you would never have lifted your fingers to write such a stupid article about something you clearly know nothing about. You are just the sort of idiot who pushes people over the edge to where, when they can’t stand the mental pain and anguish any longer, they commit suicide. Great going, all because you fail to educate yourself. No, I don’t want any follow up from a total moron like you. You should be totally ashamed of yourself. Writing crap about something you won’t even self educate on. Dumbass.

      • Reply stephanie September 12, 2013 at 1:21 PM

        You an ignorant bastard. A person who clearly has NEVER dealt with depression. A person who is actually depressed is not going to sit there and complain about “I’m so ugly. I’m so fat. I have no friends” 1 people who truly suffer from depression usually don’t even talk about because they don’t want to come off as selfish. 2 it GOES DEEPER just “having no friends” It is a serious physiological problem. A person could think positive thought all day long but that won’t fucking cure it. So no people with depression are NOT selfish. You are are just to ignorant. People like YOU are the reason people struggling won’t get help out of fear that this is going to be a persons opinion on them. SO FUCK YOU AND FUCK AND SHOVE YOUR OPINION UP YOUR FUCKING ASS.

      • Reply Ayla September 14, 2013 at 10:18 PM

        You are a very uneducated individual. Your talking about people need to have spirit ….
        Just because someonebecomes depressed does not mean they don’t have spirit. I hope that someone who suffers depression does not read this and then go top themselves, thinking its not an illness. It is an illness. It is a very very serious illnes and not one that should be taken lightly. I hope that you or any off your close family members never suffer depression. It can ruin lives.

        Or do you have depression already and in denial? Trying to find a comfort in saying its something else? Its nothing to be ashamed off and over the years the stigma is being lifted.

        Only individuals like yourself hold onto that stigma.

        Please don’t write back with a sarcastic comment or at all, unless its to apologies to the millions of people you have just shat all over.

      • Reply rhys October 1, 2013 at 7:18 PM

        Interesting all the people who have depression read this and insist it’s real.are only trying confirming their own belief system that something in their body or something they eat or something they have no control over is what is responsible for the depression. It’s not me it’s something else something tangible that exsists ur wrong it’s perspective to all who are depressed take time out forget the modern world modern pressures etc and what happens depression lifts ur brain is the single most powerful organ u have at ur command learn it and master it and fill up ur day so u never get time to even ask urself am I depressed just flow the emotions in and out feel them recognise them for what they are and move on thr choice is urs

        • Reply Sarah October 4, 2013 at 1:24 AM

          If depression doesn’t exist, how about bipolar? Schizophrenia? Runs in my family, I have had 2 people I know institutionalised. My dad has aspergers/high functioning autism – I have bipolar II. I don’t want it, as much as someone who got screwed and ended up with Huntingtons wants it, I understand some people never feel it- good for you. The writer serving god does stop depression, if it does why did he give people diseases such as these? To overcome them? Lame. Just like the Mormon church – if you’re black and repent enough your skin will turn white. If you really serve god, you ought not to judge those things which you do not understand and leave it to him. If you don’t understand but one day get this epiphany “Boy, fat people are lazy let me go win on the internetz” you also need to stop and think of other physiological issues that cause people to accumulate fat. One shoe does not fit all, you’re leaving no grey area.

          • H October 4, 2013 at 12:49 PM

            “Depression runs in the family”. What nonsense! Mental illness is NOT genetic. If your parents, cousins, uncles or whoever in your family has depression it doesnt mean you have to get it too. Ever heard of “monkey see, monkey do”? Depression is a behaviour, and if you can stop let it happening to you then your children and their children will never even know what it is. By the way, depression doesnt come from God, it comes from Satan. He hates families and want to destroy them. God only let it happen to you to see how strong your faith is in Him.

          • Toma October 4, 2013 at 12:50 PM

            Amen!

          • Fuck you November 16, 2013 at 10:27 AM

            Dear Lost human,

            God doesnt exist.

            Fuck yourself

          • Louise November 27, 2013 at 11:21 PM

            yes He does, you havent tried Him, the bible says taste and see that God is good.

          • M May 31, 2014 at 5:47 AM

            Funny. I’ve “tasted” God since I was born. I saw only hurt and judgment made by people who claim their creator wishes for everyone to love one another. Makes me wonder why my heart tells me Mother Earth is the true creator. Yet I don’t try to make people believe in her, because I know she wouldn’t approve. With her I feel safe loving just by laying in Her grass, under the shade of Her trees. I see all of the beauty she makes, yet I’ve been depressed as a Christian and I still become depressed as a Pagan. Because it’s who I am, and it just happens to me. I don’t need to read a book written by human hands to tell me what my Mother feels. But I know she accepts me as the depressive, bisexual, loving, green-thumbed, and meek woman that I am. And she doesn’t want me to change, because as long as I bring no harm to anyone she loves me. Can the same be said about your creator who makes you repent for small “sins” on your hands and knees?

          • Amazon November 23, 2013 at 9:58 AM

            Complete and utter bullshit you smug, self-serving asshole! You don’t know shit regarding what you are writing about, go learn some Science. YOU are SATAN you are hurting sick people. I hope you get depression and kill yourself the world would be a better place. Fuck off and go to hell where you belong.

          • KAMUI December 31, 2013 at 2:39 PM

            If you believe in God… why do you challenge God’s creation?
            was our bodies not made by God? is all that is in existence made by God? has it not been proven there is a such thing as science and mechanics? whom are you to decide God’s decree?

            I am not sure about a God. But i am sure that religion is a manmade creation.

            Several people have made good arguments. the depression Toma speaks of is of his own observation/experience. it is not everyone’s. I am familiar with what he speaks of though. but what he speaks of as “selfishness” is not depression. he’s gotten it confused with “malingering”. It comes from today’s common false view that of “self-entitlement”. Its the spoiled child’s view that the world should work in favor of the spoiled child…. without any effort from the individual.

            if you believe in God, then you should not question why there is “variation”. and thus variation makes… tall and short people, fat and skinny people, and all types of other physical variation. some of us are smarter, and others not so. Thus so, there is variation in the human physical body. some people are born with all types of physical deformities, and some born with mental deformities. Can you honestly tell the developmentally disabled person he/she is not so??? i believe that is the stance you “Toma” have taken.
            I suffer from depression. So did some individuals in my family. So did Ernest Hemingway. So does Mariel Hemingway. It has been proven that genes are passed down.

            There is more things that people have mentioned that i agree with or not. However, addressing each one can take some time and the patience i was not born with.

            Perhaps i can follow up later. but now i have to be selfish and surf the net some more.

          • justin October 6, 2013 at 12:12 PM

            Look at this highly educated comment right here…

          • Faye October 20, 2013 at 8:07 AM

            Actually your wrong mental illness has genetic factors such as bipolar and schizopherna are both inherited depression to can have genetic inhertied factors. As someone who suppers from a mood disorder I can not control my disorder and often my symptoms will occur before my negative thoughts. I don’t believe in a god but I do believe in spreading posetivty and helping those around me. Despite of helping others and doing my best to be posetive i still get sick. You won’t understand what its like to be unwell because you have never had it. Please do not give hurtful advice to people without any basic understanding of the illness just because a family memeber has suffered does not mean you have a basic understanding. Please research what you are talking about before spreading more BS.

          • jessica November 7, 2013 at 4:45 AM

            H,
            You are right, having a genetic predisposition to depression or any disease for that matter does not predict you will get it. There are many factors involved in developing any disease, and in illnesses like depression stress plays a huge role (evidence suggests that it plays a role moreso than genetics). In fact, in psychology, there is a diathesis-strses model suggesting that a diathesis (genetic predisposition) and stress (significant life stress) work together in causing mental illness – with only one or the other, you do not get the illness. You need to have quite a bit of both genes and stress interacting in order to develop the illness.
            Depression CAN run in the family, there IS a genetic link. This is supported by countless studies and emperical evidence, unlike any of your opinion-based claims.
            You are right, however, when you say that the person will not get it just because it runs in the family – not because genes don’t play a role, but because genes don’t play the ONLY role.
            Depression is not a behavior, Satan does not cast depression on people. It is not a sin or work of the devil to have a mental illness. Mental illnesses aren’t all that different from physical, as most have physical causes, yet that is an idea that many people seem to be unable to grasp. In addition, many of the people who get depression believe in God just as much as the rest of the general population who do not have it.
            While are all entitled to our own opinions, but yours is quite off-base. Please have more understanding of things before making such sweeping generalizations.

          • Louise November 27, 2013 at 11:23 PM

            …I agree!!!…THANKS…

          • newzbug November 28, 2013 at 4:40 AM

            So what issues have made you so angry at other peoples’ illnesses? Is it that when you were sick, no one helped you? So you don’t want anyone else to have help? I feel so sorry for you with your limited mind. Even “GOD” helped the ill of all kinds. But YOU think you are so much better than others that you can tell them what to feel, who to be and what is right. People like you are dangerous.

          • Marie January 7, 2014 at 10:35 AM

            I was following (albeit not agreeing with) you until the whole Satan thing…

      • Reply Daniel Madden October 7, 2013 at 11:31 PM

        This article if demonstratively fallacious. For one depression ranges in degree of severity, and it does have a physiological basis, it is not a falsification; tell me why your opinion is valid? What qualifications do you have to even speak on the matter?

        Depression is more than ‘selfishness’ as you so wrongly stated. Mental illness is rooted in far more than some misinformed diagnosis of a personality trait. Depression can be caused by so many things and it is so pervasive that people (including yourself), a member of the public with nothing but a lay mans knowledge of Psychology will conclude it is a concoction.

        Depression’s causal basis involves not only a physiological disturbance but a cognitive disturbance.Learned hopelessness is an example of this. This states that when an organism learns that their actions cannot change the negative experience they are feeling, they over time believe that their actions cannot change their circumstances.

        Please, do your research before you pump out another painfully misguided blog post that actually causes me to reply in not even anger but just general fear. If you think this, god knows how many more people feel the same way.

      • Reply me October 16, 2013 at 9:32 AM

        think positive and you will feel positive. Bullshit

      • Reply me October 16, 2013 at 9:41 AM

        They have to deal with your self-inflicted bullshit the same way you do. It’s not fair on you and it’s not fair on them, and at the end of it all, when you do snap yourself out of it and ‘suddenly’ feel better, the truth will come to light. And that truth?

        Your depression was all in your head. It wasn’t real. You were never actually depressed. You were just being selfish. And if you refuse to admit that you were simply being selfish, then you still are.

        You seem pretty pissed off. Let me guess someone with depression didn’t put YOU in the spotlight enough? look at your entire article and tell me its not screaming attention whore

        • Reply Ari October 16, 2013 at 10:21 AM

          Yep. This guy is mad at the world. You should read some of his other stuff. He is pissed at homosexuals too. Thinks they should be celibate. You gotta be a Christian in order to be worthy avoiding to him. I can only imagine the anti Semitic comments he has floating in his head. Seems like a great person to be around, eh?

          • Natalie April 9, 2014 at 10:48 PM

            I bet you can imagine them..I bet you can.

        • Reply NL April 9, 2014 at 10:47 PM

          Reality: we all have opinions and seek attention. Others have the freedom not to give it any consideration.

      • Reply TK October 16, 2013 at 10:00 PM

        You think you know what you are talking about but you know nothing, probably because you’ve never had anything bad in your life that would make all the “bad thoughts in your head.” You may have had relatives that were depressed but you don’t know what its like and if you told them the same crap your blabbering your mouth about on here then that makes you insensitive and selfish. You just sound like a douche and closed minded.

      • Reply C. Pratt October 21, 2013 at 8:03 AM

        This is a totally thoughtless and judgmental article. It doesn’t deserve so many replies. Your assessment is just as unfortunate as all those people who would label melancholy with all kinds of DSM designations. There are some people who are doing poorly in life, and don’t see a way out of their financial or life predicaments ie. where they live in a dangerous neighborhood, lost their job and can’t find another, don’t have a support network etc…..After someone kills themselves that’s when people say all these things they would have done to help the person, if they had only called. Well, your article is evidence of the kind thought people who are suffering from sadness can be up against, and why they decide no one cares because so many people just want to teach them a lesson about their “bad attitude.”

      • Reply Cattrina Hull October 25, 2013 at 10:03 AM

        I’ve been sitting in a funk for over 4 months now. I’ve tried medications that just made me feel worse. I must say you are right. It is very selfish for me to sit here and be down and out. I was diagnosed with bipolar and major depression. It all started in my head and I know it. I do believe we have the power to make ourselves feel better by the way we think about things. I’ve tried though and I’m still sitting here. My relationships with my family and friends are going down hill because of how I feel. The only way to explain how I feel is that a piece of me died. I seriously woke up one morning and didn’t feel the same anymore. My energy was gone and all I want to do is sleep. I’ve even thought of suicide. I look at old pictures and see how I was so much more happier and now I’m not. I, I, I…..I guess I just want to be this way

        • Reply Ed October 25, 2013 at 12:07 PM

          I found in tests done when a lobster is given anti-depressant they become aggressive. Reading some of these letters clarifys that. I then found when looking, the area of your brain called Amydala is where fear occurs. So a serotonin uptake may help you with energy to defend yourself. But can’t help you when another area is bringing you down. When therapists discovered that one dose of mdma could treat ptsd,they banned it. No one should have a life time of depression. But that’s how they earn a living.

        • Reply Toma November 6, 2013 at 1:11 PM

          Do you have a vision for how you actually want to be?

      • Reply Mariah C. November 1, 2013 at 9:25 AM

        While I agree with the thesis of the article, I think you should’ve changed the title to “You’re not depressed, you’re just not grateful for the things you have.” For the people who are “depressed” they tend to take small remarks like “you’re selfish” and agonize about themselves even further. So from the get go, we should make more positive comments to put them on the right track for a less self-centered mindset.

        • Reply Toma November 6, 2013 at 2:33 PM

          But grateful to who?

      • Reply Dennis Mariegaard Jensen November 2, 2013 at 5:07 PM

        You obviously havn´t met people with severe depression. It is a very real medical diagnose. The worst thing you can tell a depressed persion, is that he is being selfish or it´s all in his head. I know the behaviour can seem selfish to people who doesn´t have this diagnose but it really is a diagnose that people cant just stop having on their own. I know lots of people say they feel depressed for a short while in their life and that can for many people not really be called depression…I do agree with you on the comparison on other countries and your view on appreciating smaller things in life but don´t judge depression to be unreal.

      • Reply Tami November 3, 2013 at 1:52 AM

        You’re not intelligent, you’re antagonistic.

      • Reply georgia November 6, 2013 at 10:19 PM

        Selfishness is a contagious paradox and it causes “depression”. Contagious because if you start thinking about how selfish somebody is, “all they do is think about themselves, they never think about how I feel, they don’t consider MY emotions and it really upsets ME”. The person then becomes selfish. This is paradoxical, selfishness causes itself.
        Depression is realism, depression is when people on this earth realise that people honestly aren’t that great. Think about it; you never see anybody saying “I feel so depressed because there aren’t enough trees” or “I feel so depressed because the sunshine is too warm in the summer”. It is the people, we’re all messed up.

        Now I am by no means depressed, but there is no solution to depression if we don’t all start to empathize. Can you all imagine if everybody put others first? Can you imagine how great life would feel? A harmonic and hopeful place to live. Selfishness causes depression. Depression is just the realisation of it.

      • Reply Steve. November 14, 2013 at 8:45 PM

        Why does your opinion matter? You have obviously never suffered a mental illness! Yes depression is a selfish illness, it turns your focus onto yourself because you are trying to work out what the fuck is wrong with you! So if there is nothing wrong, why can i become depressed when things are going well? Just had a baby, getting promoted, happy with everything and then a total flip in my reactions to everything in life, become withdrawn and trapped in my thoughts. It has come when i am unhappy, it has come in the summer, in the winter when i have had money and been loved or no money and worn out! Maybe its the word “DEPRESSION” as everyone uses it even if only a little unhappy or maybe its demonic possession. But whatever it is called it is Very Fucking real to me!!!!
        One time i was like it for 18months…..
        As a last resort i had a course of E.C.T.
        Was back in work after t weeks as if the last 18 months hadn’t happened… Explain that!
        Was it a righting of the chemicals after the convultions ( as was first noticed in epileptic patients feeling slightly happier after a fit) or did it drive out the demon until he gets in the next time, Me, i couldn’t really care less what it’s called as long as i can get out of it!
        Maybe there are more cases reported in the west because the west has somewhere to report it :-/ . Or is it the fact that alot of people use it as an excuse to get out of work like the bad back ‘ invisible ‘ illness.

      • Reply Anna January 3, 2014 at 3:30 AM

        I hate to say this, but I agree. Our thoughts have tremendous impact on our health, mental and physical. I have been depressed on and off for years, but all the while living a full life; eating healthy, raising a child, working out, being responsible etc, good job, family, friends. It’s when my thinking gets negative that I get depressed. To live a life of constant outward gratitude would negate depression, but it is freaking hard to do all the time. Am I pre-disposed to negative thinking? Was it my up bringing? Very likely. But it is within my POWER and control to change my thought process. Very hard. But, this article has helped. Thank you

      • Reply Leah January 4, 2014 at 11:10 PM

        Ok obviously you have never suffered from depression and don’t understand what it is whatsoever!!! I agree that your writing is very good but your idea of a mental sickness that cannot be controlled???!!! That’s what is selfish. I’m sorry but you’re being very unfair.

      • Reply Carlos Abreu January 22, 2014 at 2:29 AM

        I agree with you wholeheartedly. I deal with my partner’s so-called depression on a daily basis. Anything can set it off. It’s terrible. I should be the one trying to jump off a bridge. The real victims in all of this are not the depressed, it’s the people around them.

        • Reply lol u April 3, 2014 at 12:36 PM

          u r just selfish and donnot give A FLYING FUCK about ur partner! lol…poor her!

      • Reply marie January 27, 2014 at 2:25 AM

        well i think depression is complex and not just because of the ‘centre’. i’m a psychologist myself and its people like you who have never been so low as them and have no compassion that make it worse. they feel guilty then, misunderstood and they feel like they haven’t the right to be sad. they repress their feelings, don’t think about the situatio anymore, guess what? that leads often to ptsd with depression, long term lack of energy and sleep problems, not being able to work, without knowing why. Then it seems the person had a trauma, beaten and neglected when younger, and a unconscious belief that the world was dangerous and people weren’t to trust. its working trough that trauma, getting insight in the problems and helping the patient face it instead of denial and disscociative behavior, helping them cope with stress ( they have been under stress to long, and that why they can’t handle the same amount stress as’ normal’ people, they have gone over heir breaking point wich everbody has) empathise with those people, give them the trust, guidance and healthy empathic relationship and most get better and cured. when a person is raped, its very important to talk and have social support or the chance its great to develop depression. its important to have friends in the adolescence, very important for the self worth, not going in criminal behavior, and good school results. so yes’ i have no friends is very bad for that person and is not selfish. we are social animals, one who doesn’t get love will never be a sane person that is optimistic. reason why their is more depression in western countries is because its accepted. but look in all countries suicide is a big problems. in socialistic countries it is more outed by psychosomatic complaints because its not accepted. people who are depressed work sometimes ver hard and also don’t have time to think. they escape in work but become more drained and exhausted everyday because of unsolved issues. those people aren’t selfish, the have disfunctional views of the world and its my job to correct that view step by step by and giving them insight and alternative behavior. its not a choice to be depressed. i don’t know a signle person who was raped when he was a child ( a very sensitive period) who was neglected and teased for a long time that is able to get sane by himself. they aren’t selfish, they are broken and weak, and they need someone who has the patience to change their views and toughts (wich are often unconscious at first), and coping styles and its important to get the family involved so they can handle the situation right and so they can have understandment for the patients. sorry for my english

        • Reply Toma January 27, 2014 at 2:16 PM

          Hey Marie. You sound like a good person, and I am sure you help a lot of people, but you will help so many more if you stop labelling them as having ‘illnesses’ that don’t exist. Once you label people you alleviate them of their responsibility to self-correct. If you, as a trusted psychologist, tell someone who doesn’t have my convictions that they have an illness that a) doesn’t actually exist, and b) is not their fault, how in the hell are they going to fix it? It’s like pointing at a void and telling me to destroy whatever is in it, then watching me swing a sledgehammer at nothing but air.

          Why don’t we give a name to people who suffer from PTSD and Depression? Let’s call it Pospression. In the three seconds it took us to invent Pospression, nothing has changed in these people either psychologically or at a cellular level, yet they now magically suffer from it. Because of our ‘discovery’ of Pospression, there can now be a whole new category of therapists, and a whole new treatment methodology. We can even write books about it with lots of case studies and statistics that university students can study in Pospression 101. Pharmaceutical companies can invent new medication for Pospression that is a mix between Zoloft and Xanax, and they can call it Zolax. This is what depression is, and this is what you are doing to people by telling them that they suffer from it. It is NOT an illness. I find it ironic that therapists are the last ones to understand that.

          If you want to use your good nature to help even more people, don’t tell them what you think they have. Do all of the other good shit you said, but stop labelling them. If you do have to label them, because that’s what you’ve been blindly taught to do, then do it in your mind.

          • marie January 28, 2014 at 10:41 AM

            heej Toma,
            ok lets get that straight, i don’t label people. We psychologists, well at least in my country, are trained a long time to think critical and are educated at least five years (education based on valid research). I don’t label people. I don’t say to them that they have a mental disorder. Thats indeed giving the people like a death sentence for depression for example. But we have to use them if we want psychiatric support to describe a medicine. Those medicins don’t help in the long run, thats true, but they help the persons who suffer so much that they aren’t able to anything about their situation, medication gives them a short relief so that i can begin to work with them. And its not that it is a definitive sentence when the person is ‘cured’. Well, i certainly, after getting the perspective of my patiënt ‘completely’, give them responsibilty of their problems too. Seems like you have a completely wrong view of psychologists. My patiënts have to work during the sessions, they do a lot of things, a lot, they certainly take responsibility and action. I make also a whole schema of the problems with all the underlying factors (in the perspective of the patiënt and my knowledge). That remembers me hah :p One even did let make a poster of it. And belief me, its confronting to see your own faults and responsibilities of your ‘disorder’ too, and that can only with a good build therapeutic bound and a lots of empathy with the help of specific technics. Those labels are needed so people over different countries can do research and talk about the same problems without completely different understanding of the concept . Its merely a practical thing to communicate that is very important, we wouldn’t be able to communicate about depression now or autisme or OCD if we hadn’t a concept in or head and a label for it. If it is a ilness or not don’t really matter to me, fact is it need to be ‘cured’ and most people want to be cured from it. Let me tell you something very personal about my life. I suffered cancer, in my ovarians, i can’t have children because of that. But it didn’t matter how tired it was, i had still hope, probably sucked more for the people around me. The ptsd i was diagnosed with after a horrible experience, i don’t gonna talk about it here and it doesn’t matter now, was the most horrible thing in my life and felt like the worst ilness. I did want to be it a ilness and recognised. Because you know, ill people get compassion and understandment, i never had that for my ptsd, and that was maybe even worse than the trauma itself. People couldn’t handle see me so pale and tired and still working, they or ignored me because i wasn’t that fun anymore, (i didn’t complain or anything or wasn’t rude, always friendly) or just minimazed what was going on and indirectly insulting me of being weak. Well, lukely and finally i’m stronger than ever before and have become a very ambitious woman and a fighter. I have times with sadness i never felt before that, i feel less happy, once i was that girl always smiling, but i’m more driven. Sorry, i’m getting of topic now. What i wanted to say by that is that some patiënts ask me what is wrong, want a label, not to release the responsibility ( i always call a patient like that a person with adhd for exampme, not a adhd’er), but to be recognised (that it isn’t entirely their fault), or to get helped in a centre that fits their needs that are for too long neglected. Like autistic persons who got help far too late. Also for example for depression, how longer a person is depressed, how more difficult it is to feel real again. Not tp be some numb person without a sense of self walking like a dead zombie anymore.

          • Mala January 28, 2014 at 2:30 PM

            I apologize for the knee-jerk reaction. I’m not well and surely my defensiveness is evidence of that. I appreciate your well thought-out and honest response. TBH you sound a lot more grounded than most psychologists I know, including the ones in my own family (who I’ve never spoken to about my issues as that would be a huge conflict of interest). I appreciate you distinguishing between labeling people, and labeling symptoms as a means of understanding and communication between professionals, but be aware that not everyone thinks that way.

            I’m sorry that I was ugly in my response and I really appreciate you taking the time to respond to such an aggressive reply. I’ve just been having a hard time lately and I’ve finally gotten to the point where the only person who can help me is me. I want everyone to understand they can help themselves! And that they’re the only ones.

            I agree that medicine can help a lot of people get to the point where they can do the work, but too many people start popping pills and think that’s all they have to do, or do it for too long. I have been on medication. I wasted 5 years of my teens thinking they could help. I haven’t seriously need help since then until now, and the SSRIs actually triggered some horrifying other psychosis that I had not been experiencing, so I’m adamant to never go back.

            Thank you, thank you, thank you. You are a credit to your field.

        • Reply Mala January 28, 2014 at 11:31 AM

          I stopped reading after, “people like you who has never been as low as them.”

          I’m not going to go into my personal details, except to say that I have suffered every kind of trauma you can imagine and as recently as last week I couldn’t have a pair of tweezers, a bottle of bleach, a fucking bottle of VITAMINS in my possession. Don’t fucking tell me I don’t know low. NO ONE has more compassion for the mentally ill. Certainly not a “psychologist,” which I doubt you are.

          Don’t fucking speak up if you don’t know what you’re talking about.

          Of all the mental health “professionals” I have seen, (somewhere between 7-10) exactly ONE of them has been helpful. Psychologists are some of the most fucked up people I know. You think that just because you spent some time studying psychology you have any idea how humans work. Everything is nice in theory. But most of you people practice for shit.

          Honestly the nurses in the facilities have been more helpful than 90% of the doctors I’ve seen. Especially this last bout. Every doctor I saw just fucked me up and exacerbated the situation. Don’t fucking get me started on psychiatrists.

          Approach the situation like you’re talking to someone who can’t drive because it’s too tempting to drive off every overpass, and then I will consider what you have to say.

          Until then I will back up this “selfish” theory with all the strength of my convictions. No evidence you can present me will outweigh the knowledge and experience I have just living my damn life. How dare you label people and tell them they’re weak? THAT is more damaging than anything I could possibly say… Heaven forbid you encourage people to believe in themselves and their own potential…

          It’s assholes like you that keep people “sick.”

          • Natalie April 9, 2014 at 10:54 PM

            It is not his responsibility, nor anyone else’s, to give you what you need to make it through the day, or to influence how you think. God’s will is that each of his children grow their strength through their relationship to him. If you’re not spiritual you can discard that.

            Perhaps you can allow others to express themselves by not allowing it to affect you as a personal insult. I did not experience Toma’s reply as aggressive.

      • Reply A realist February 5, 2014 at 7:40 PM

        Ignorance is also selfish, And you are very Ignorant to assume you can walk in anybodys shoes is disgraceful of you and shows selfish up bringing,You are in fact a sad Bigot To say depression is selfish, The third world is not only where there is hardship,Starvation happens all over the world open YOUR EYE’S and more importantly your small mind,God forgive your children if ever they become unwell because it is clear as a Human being you would not have the mind and Heart to help them, Rape happens in every country in the world,I myself have Depression it’s not a state of mind it is’nt something you ask for and whilst it is your own worst enemy so is the the man that put me there,How dare you say thank you to people who say they appreciate what you say,
        Your Parents must be so proud of you………..
        You yourself will be judged But i suppose you dont beleive in the Lord either you cant do or you wouldnt be so small minded,I will tell you a book to go away and read it’s called the BIBLE go read it you may learn something,You small minded little man……..

      • Reply A realist February 5, 2014 at 8:08 PM

        Also to add to my earlier comment,
        I wonder how many Truely Depressed people have read your utter Crap and actually killed themselves?? You must certainly have blood on your hands but do you ever get told that?? Are you a Doctor??? because you have clearly never studied, I tell you something right now people like you who have proberly been the cause of pushing a good unwell person over the edge should spend some time in a prison get beaten,Fucked forcibly up the arse by a big man and then say Hey Ho thats life beleive me you would be pretty fucking depressed you dont shut down and say all ok that didnt happen,
        Your an idiot,You dont know me but you label me,I dont know you but i hate you and hope you burn in hell , What a horrible thing for me to say but hey if the shoe fits lace that bitch up and wear it, sleep well at night people like you always do

      • Reply Your Mother February 6, 2014 at 12:20 PM

        not everyone agrees with your 2 22. So go phuc yourself.

      • Reply Jane February 10, 2014 at 6:03 AM

        Hey I think this is completely insensitive and you should be ashamed of yourself. This obviously sounds like you have never suffered from major depression or suicidal thoughts. I suffer from PTSD and developed major depression because I was molested and raped as a child. Deep down I feel disgusting, angry and worthless because sexual abuse ruined my life. I have good days, sure. All people with depression do. But there are days when I physically can’t get out of bed or go anywhere because one little thing can trigger a meltdown. Because no matter what, I have to carry around those memories of being abused. I have to try not give anything away because I don’t want anyone’s pity.
        So god forbid my heart is always heavy and I have random meltdowns. I’m sorry I freak out when I’m touched or left alone with a stranger. I deeply apologize for being so selfish that I hide from people because I’m useless. I feel so guilty for being upset when I had my life ruined at the age of three and crying uncontrollably when I have a flashback. How selfish of me.

        Go fuck yourself.

      • Reply Gillian February 11, 2014 at 5:57 PM

        I understand what you’re trying to say here, however I must respectfully disagree. I have been a sufferer of depression and anxiety for most of my life. I don’t blame anyone for it, I’m just sad. I’m still a contributing member of society, I go to work and university and just “suck it up”. I’m hardly selfish as I do a lot for everyone. But nobody, not even you can possibly fathom the tumultuous struggle it is just to get put of bed each day. To force a smile and to be happy because let’s face it, nobody likes a debby downer. But for you to say all of those hurtful things in this article; is just presumptuous and small minded. The truth is, everybody is different and yes, even a person struggling with depression can still be functional.

      • Reply Harry Kennedy February 12, 2014 at 1:50 AM

        You are the biggest pig headed fool and i hope you experience every kind of torture that makes people DEPRESSED, Then you will understand how hard it is to try and be happy, to try and ‘get over it’ what a fucking ignorant bastard, My best friend died because of people like you telling her she is selfish for being upset about her abusive childhood, you’re article spits on her grave, she was the least selfish human being that i have ever met, she never told her own mother because she didn’t want to upset her! what a nasty person you really are, god forbid anyone with depression reads the title of this ‘YOU’RE NOT DEPRESSED. YOU’RE SELFISH’ that could tip them over the edge, making someone feel bad because they are depressed, how low do you actually want to go?? The people that have made them depressed and ‘ill’ are the selfish ones. You can not expect someone suddenly see a child dying in africa and say, my past is nothing ! i need to get over it and cherish my life! and live happily ever after. NO. I have never seen such a display of ignorance. This is so offensive of you to post this and a danger to the sufferers out there.

      • Reply maximuss February 28, 2014 at 10:53 PM

        You are wrong!. I know it is hard to be around a depressed person but you clearly have no idea what it is like to be inside a persons head who has depression. This is a mental illness which causes so much pain and heartbreak to the sufferer and those around him/her. You obviously believe that every person with depression chooses to be in such pain and turmoil, and also choose to inflict pain on their loved ones because they are selfish?? you have no idea!!!!!!! . The only positive I took from your post was the quote at the beginning, I feel sorry for your ignorance but I thank you for that.

      • Reply nidge01 April 6, 2014 at 5:13 PM

        Depression is in fact a serious illness, and like any other mental illness, it can kill you if left untreated. Don’t be too shallow to think that because you’ve never been diagnosed with it, the same should apply to all humankind. A lot of people seem to think depression is merely an excuse teenagers use to get attention and mistake sadness for depression. So you seriously think there cannot be a condition which can cause a person to have negative thoughts all the time? Where did you get your PhD on the matter at hand?

      • Reply GREEN April 7, 2014 at 12:26 PM

        SHUT UP JUST SHUT UP!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! THESE ARE ALL LIES!

      • Reply Alex April 12, 2014 at 7:20 AM

        I have Clinical Depression.
        I go to a university that I love, I make straight A’s, I won a scholarship a while back, I’m also a student worker, and I love my job.
        I wrote a play for my Intro to Theater class, and all I get is praise from my professor. I’m not a theater major, but I did love my professor and my class.
        I go home, and I get to relax, and go to sleep, and go to school again the next day.
        On the weekends I get to hang out with my beautiful girlfriend. I love her and she loves me.
        I have no complaints about my life. I love every part of it, and I love everything I do for my college, my girlfriend, my family, and everything in between.
        I have Clinical Depression.
        I feel depressed constantly, and I have nothing to be depressed about.
        And I have been feeling this way for the past 9 months.
        Here’s my story:
        In High School, I really know what I wanted to do with my life. I had a weird sadness that my life was going nowhere. Again during this time of my life I had nothing to be sad about, it’s just that I was sad. In my Junior year of High school, I started having seizures. Multiple ones, at least once a week. Then I got on a medication called Depakote. My seizures stopped and I felt happy. I found a new path in my life and I was ready to take on the world. In fact my seizures stopped so completely that when I went to my neurologist, they said that I had absolutely no chance of having a seizure again. So I stopped taking my medication, knowing that I would be safe…..and then it happened. Depression. Clinical Depression. Apparently my medication, Depakote, was also a mood stabilizer. Apparently that’s why I found my new path in life and that’s why I became so happy.
        So I spent the next 9 months of my life hating myself. I continued to do what I love, I continued to make straight A’s and follow my dreams. I continued to have a great relationship with my girlfriend because thank god she was so understanding.
        There was nothing to be sad about.

        So you do NOT know anything about Clinical Depression.
        Let’s look at it this way. My seizures were caused my a certain part of my brain that wasn’t functioning properly. Depression is the same way, Depression is caused by a lack of neurotransmitters in the brain, making certain parts of the brain not function.
        Telling me that Depression is caused by my own selfishness is like telling me that my seizures were caused by my selfishness. My brain caused my seizures and Depression. Not my selfishness.

        Quite frankly, when you come and tell me that the absolute worst time of my life is caused by my own selfishness, it’s incredibly childish, and thoughtless that you would even consider it.
        I would have shut your mouth before you start talking about something that you clearly don’t understand.

      • Reply cc April 16, 2014 at 1:28 PM

        This is horribly offensive and scientifically inaccurate.

      • Reply Maygin McEwn April 23, 2014 at 9:25 AM

        Depression is a mental health issue. Most of the people described in this article are miserable people not depressed. There are many different kinds situational, clinical, chemically induced, etc. You know what you are feeling and only you know the severity of it. People should not be putting information out there that they do not actually have. Unless you experience it, live with it, have seen MRI’s with the change in the brain then you really don’t have any room to speak. I am not saying to not state your opinion, but quit trying to pass it off as fact.

      • Reply sara April 28, 2014 at 12:14 PM

        you obviously lead a very sheltered and charmed life. your broad brush approach is really just that-broad. do you really think “poor countries” bother with windshield surveys? asking if those that are repressed if they are “depressed?” really? that particular comment shows a glaring naiveté on your part. there are people out there that have had very traumatizing experiences, which could lead to depression, believe it or not- shocking I know, people who can’t simply wish their misery and nightmares away by “sitting under a tree” and blissfully making it disappear. it’s understandable that your yuppie lifestyle has perhaps protected you from the real nightmares in society.

        very selfish on your part to assume that all experiences of depression are the same. you are the one being selfish here. congratulations, you are a certified hypocrite- with a healthy dose of narcissism to boot-since you are playing psychologist, I will too.

        • Reply Natalie May 12, 2014 at 9:50 PM

          Sara, all I saw was your ability to take someone’s given right to express a belief and turn it into a reason to make that person an undeserving and entitled ingrate who is responsible for your and others’ depression. You turned something that simply exists into the receptacle for your misplaced anger, because you think your empathy keeps you from living an unhindered life. No one on the earth is immune from witnessing pain and suffering, nor from enduring it.

          That’s all I gather from your comment. I can’t agree on your evaluation of Toma.

      • Reply Blablabla you know nothing lol May 11, 2014 at 11:28 AM

        I agree that’s the general truth. But I also know that there are people who simply suffer for how people hurt each other…kill each other… for how humans take over all the beauty for greed and etc etc etc….HUGE list. It’s truth it’s mainly a selfish thing but you’re also speaking lacking on experience I’m pretty sure of that…
        And no, I’m not depressed. The way I see it “This world is merciless, and it’s also very beautiful”. To find such pure beauty you must co-exist with tons of crap. And I’m willing to do it, with a smile on my face. And that’s belief in yourself more than anything… Which is also selfish in some way…
        Selfishness isn’t a bad thing all the time…

        • Reply Natalie May 12, 2014 at 9:55 PM

          Selfishness/emptiness exist in all of us. Without some level of it, we’d be useless in all ways. There’s no worth in evaluating those qualities as good or bad.

          • Raddmiral May 13, 2014 at 7:06 AM

            If we’re not evaluating whether being selfish is good or bad, then what value does this article bring anybody anywhere?

          • Natalie May 13, 2014 at 7:09 AM

            The purpose? To express thoughts and beliefs. There is no absolute truth that we can arrive at.

          • Toma May 13, 2014 at 7:29 AM

            This is an important point. To understand what the article is about, we must understand what selfishness is. People immediately assume it is something objectively bad. While it can lead to bad things, it could also be viewed as simply a state of being, which is neither good nor bad.

            Personally, I consider it an inferior state of being born of the ego. A self-centred person is more likely to do self-centred things, and those things are, on the whole, more likely to do more harm than good.

          • Simbarashe June 5, 2014 at 12:02 PM

            How egotistical is to say all that without the simple acknowledgment that you might be wrong. The truth isn’t available to everyone xD you self centered lunatic making this just so you can have more attention

          • Natalie June 5, 2014 at 10:20 PM

            I don’t see the need to apologize for expressing a thought and to offer a public disclaimer that one might be wrong.

      • Reply souls adrift May 13, 2014 at 11:16 AM

        You kinda had a decent thing going for a second.. then you messed up. “Cherish the smallest moments that life offers, like sitting under a tree on a beautiful day, the breeze against your skin, with not a thought in the world.” Well, I feel guilty for not being able to do this. How I would love to, but I can’t block my negative thoughts as hard as I try. You clearly have no credibility to speak about depression, you don’t understand it at all. And then I look over and see that you’re pro-religion. Man, religion has fucked the world in the ass more than anything else. “Pro-religion”. Go fuck yourself.

      • Reply joural May 15, 2014 at 1:35 AM

        You’re right, that feedback was brilliant, well thought out, and explains exactly why he agreed with you.

        On the other hand, are you a trained psychologist? Do you know anything about what you’re talking about? Have you ever been depressed? Known anyone who was depressed, and actually learned about it as a result? Have you ever used your access to the internet to find actual opinions that disagree with you, from professionals? Honestly, this is so uninformed it hurts.

        • Reply Natalie May 15, 2014 at 11:36 PM

          Perhaps changing your expectations of Toma and the world will result in less hurt on your part.

      • Reply Rocca May 16, 2014 at 1:51 AM

        Where are your citations? You are stating a personal opinion as fact. This is not an authentic argument. Where is your evidence, medical or otherwise?

      • Reply ed May 29, 2014 at 6:49 PM

        Pro religion, ha ha!!!!! You’re the most ignorant, judgmental, hateful and the farthest from a Christian. Who the hell do you think you are judging what you don’t know. When you’re in hell where you belong Karma is going to show you an eternity of depression.

        • Reply Natalie May 30, 2014 at 4:49 AM

          That’s awfully judgmental.

          • Jeremy May 31, 2014 at 10:43 PM

            Like most people who take religion that seriously

      • Reply Jeremy May 31, 2014 at 1:12 PM

        I’m depressed but I’m not selfish. If I was selfish than I would let people know. Instead I cry a day worth of frustration out on the pillow I sleep on as quiet as possible because my dad is dead, my grades are dropping, my mom is dying to provide for me because I’m not old enough to get a job and honestly the only reasons I am not hanging from my ceiling fan are because I’m afraid of death and because I’d hate leaving my mom to feel the pain I feel now…I fucking hate this life where I can’t change a thing but ending it all can’t be the answer…

        Help me
        Show me how I’m selfish so maybe, just maybe I can fix the pain so I can look at my mom and have a talk about my day without going to the bathroom to cry into my shirt.
        Please.

        • Reply Lily March 24, 2015 at 3:06 AM

          Jeremy, I hope you are still hanging in there and that things have gotten better for you. Your story is heartbreaking. I do hope you didn’t take this ignorant article to heart. This guy doesn’t know what he is talking about and his attitude is decidedly unChristlike and just as offensive to a real Christian as it is to those who are not Christians.

      • Reply lily June 1, 2014 at 11:32 PM

        this whole article is so rude and incredibly insulting. you are 100% wrong. people with depression don’t have a choice. if we did we wouldn’t be depressed. you have no idea unless you’ve been through it. you are so narrow minded and disgusting.

      • Reply Gram June 7, 2014 at 1:42 AM

        “Depression is not real. It is something that exists in people’s minds” Ummm.. That’s exactly where it exists.

        I don’t want to be rude but you should stick to writing about things that you understand.

      • Reply Jessica June 18, 2014 at 1:37 PM

        Sorry, but you’re very wrong here, you even seem to explain why but you barely miss it. Hormone imbalances are fuel for mood changes and depression, in which hemisphere do we see that most common in? Other than that, you’re advice on how to battle depression is actually not bad, though I’m sorry you won’t recognize the disease.

      • Reply Sierra July 5, 2014 at 1:49 PM

        I understand where you are coming from, but it was my realization of my selfishness that deepened my depression or whatever the hell is wrong with me, but I don’t know how to snap out of it or if it’s possible to. It started as unselfish when I would let strangers vent to me online and it was then I saw the darkness of the world. I’ve been this way for coming up on two years now and instead of an intense sad feeling I feel numbness which I haven’t decided if that’s better or not, I believe depression is very real but self hypnotic, we drag ourselves down without a rope to pull us up. At the moment the only thing keeping me relatively sane is the fact I have people to save and adventures to find and a best friend who if I left would no doubt follow and she will be the greatest writer one day. As I am only 14, I don’t say this with arrogance, but I’m not your typical cake face boy crazy slutty teenager, but rather an antisocial poet that spends her time listening to music and thinking, which I believed killed me, for as you said, the more time you have to yourself the worse you’re off because the thoughts will hypnotize you. Though I don’t regret falling into this because I’ve gained some intellect and wise thinking, I’m sorry to have wasted your time of you reading this comment but I’ve said what I wanted to say, I agree and disagree.

        • Reply Susan Lea Rudd July 5, 2014 at 10:36 PM

          My depression started when I was younger than you, and my biggest regret is not seeking help sooner. I listened to my dad and people like Toma and didn’t get help til I was 30. Counselors helped me see how my life really was, instead of my denial. I didn’t realize it wasn’t normal to feel “numb” or sad all the time. I didn’t realize that when something bad happened that other people only went down 10 feet, not 100. I didn’t realize that I was much more “sensitive” than others. Anti-depressants got/kept me functional so I could hold a job. Don’t spend as many years miserable as I did. Still fighting depression today – but not all by myself.

      • Reply Ross Duncan July 9, 2014 at 3:26 AM

        So, you’re victim blaming on depressed people. Yeah, that’s going to get you far in life, sir.

        You’re telling people that it’s their fault for the way that they are. If this article is designed to help people, my God you must be joking. Telling me that only piles even more negative thoughts onto myself and makes me even more depressed, and then you say that getting rid of negative thoughts is the answer. Your own logic just collapsed on itself.

        Some people just can’t help negative feelings. They don’t choose to feel bad about something. E.g. when I woke up late this morning, I didn’t say to myself ‘huh, I woke up late, therefore I must feel angry with myself’. I naturally felt it. This article is completely inconsiderate about anyone else’s feelings; if you ask me, you’re the one who’s really being selfish here.

        And being selfish is no-where near the same thing as being depressed. Self-centered people can be very proud of stuff that they’ve achieved even though they may not be very outgoing.

        You can’t just tell people to “think positive” either. I want to feel positive, but the draining of mental energy from depression prevents me from feeling positive. And whenever I do try and think positive, my unconscious mind bars me from it; whenever I say to myself “you did something really good today”, my natural response when my mind is in a low-energy state is “no, you did a fucking terrible job and you’ve embarrassed everyone around you, so go fucking die.” Sometimes I just can’t help it.

        So I think you need to consider the feelings of real-life depressed people and those other articles surrounding the topic before creating social stigmas and re-inventing the wheel.

        This video will debunk a lot of what you’ve just said: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6jpBB32B4m4

        This article did not help my depression and I will not read any of your articles again.

        • Reply Natalie July 9, 2014 at 7:53 AM

          Unlike you, I feel empowered by the thought that my state is 100% in my hands. Even when I struggle, I still rest my head at night knowing all that’s needed to change is in me. I can’t tell you why I think this way, and I don’t think it makes me better than you.

          But when you say something like:
          “So I think you need to consider the feelings of real-life depressed people and those other articles surrounding the topic before creating social stigmas and re-inventing the wheel,” you’re managing to guilt trip and make far-fetched assumptions to such a degree that there is no room for discussion. Those who are not “real-life depressed people ” are shamed into backing away slowly from you…That’s when understanding goes away to die.

      • Reply sapy July 14, 2014 at 8:55 AM

        if anyone is selfish it’s you!
        you are the biggest idiot iv’e ever found on the internet. and i believe, in the entire world. i wish you, from the depth of my heart, g-d should punish you with the worst clinical depression ever! and than will see if being depressed is being selfish. shame on you! idiot. (and you still have the cheek of asking people “to be nice” with the comments)

        • Reply Natalie July 15, 2014 at 1:04 AM

          I think it is defeating and selfish to associate your behavior to depression.

          • Lily March 23, 2015 at 4:04 PM

            Nobody is using depression to justify immoral behavior. That’s something that idiots like this Toma guy and the possibly even bigger idiots who support them don’t seem to get when they are trying to declare a legitimate mental health disorder to be non-existent.

      • Reply Laura Hogarth July 16, 2014 at 2:10 PM

        haven’t read all the responses you have received to this article or your follow up and I have no intention to. Comparing Depression to selfishness is one of the most disgusting things I have ever heard on the topic. You want to know why so many friends and family members say things like “I had no idea” “this came as such a shock” “Why didn’t they just talk to me about it” “s/he seemed to be getting better!” after a loved one has killed his or her self? It is because people with depression don’t talk to their friends and family out of fear of being judged the way you have just done. They don’t want to tell their mom and/or dad because they don’t want to worry them or cause them pain, they don’t want to tell their friends about it because their friends are all dealing with problems as well so ‘why should you bother them with this’; it’s misplaced logic like this that depressed people often face, and it’s perpetuated by people like you. In your follow up article you stated “I’m not even remotely a genius” and clearly you are not a professional so may I offer you some advice? Your arguments are based on a complete misunderstanding. People dealing with depression have to deal with this on a daily basis, and you are perpetuating myths that serve only to cause harm. Learn the difference between being selfish, feeling sadness and being depressed before you write an article like this again.

        • Reply Natalie July 16, 2014 at 11:10 PM

          The logic is only misplaced from your perspective. In my opinion, it’s just Toma’s logic. And it makes sense to me in a lot of ways.

      • Reply Daniel July 17, 2014 at 10:59 AM

        This is the most dumbest, pathetic article I’ve ever read. I got a new rule.

        Idiots that claim depression is a choice, must also admit that parkinsons and cancer are choices too.

        “I just feel sad. My career isn’t going well. My kids don’t talk to me. My dad was an alcoholic. I hate my job. I hate my life. I’m fat. I’m ugly. I don’t have many friends. People don’t like me … are the sort of typical comments that we hear from the depressed. Nowhere in there is there a mention of other people. It’s all about you”

        All about me? So getting upset over your dad being an alcoholic somehow means I’m narcissistic and am only thinking about me? Did you even research depression before you typed up this stupid cluttered pile of nonsense and idiocy? This article is the most unprofessional thing I’ve ever read. Even the people on Fox-News are more professional than you.

        “We have everything, they have nothing. You’d think that somebody who doesn’t have food for their family would feel pretty fucking depressed, yet no, it’s the western businessman with everything who feels depressed.”

        So money somehow equals happiness? Wow what a very immature, fucked up, materialistic view of life you have. You got raped and tortured? PSHH FIRST WORLD PROBLEMS! Atleast you don’t live in africa!

        There could be a person that is fairly wealthy but is struggling day by day to live with a terminal illness like Parkinsons or MS but you know fuck them, their life is just so god damn perfect because they don’t live in a third world country.

        You’re no doctor and you have no knowledge on basic physiology if you think that people choose depression. Do some research next time before expressing your opinions you pseudo intellectual.

        • Reply Natalie July 17, 2014 at 11:58 PM

          It’s funny that you mention science and research but all you do if talk about emotions and lay a guilt trip.

      • Reply Lez king July 24, 2014 at 2:04 PM

        You are right..the reason I am in my situation is because of the stupid decisions I have made. Mainly selfish ones!

        So I will continue now with a desire to fix my shit ,,,not for me but for my family….thanks mate!

      • Reply adam February 18, 2015 at 5:12 AM

        You are incredibly stupid

        • Reply Natalie February 25, 2015 at 3:59 AM

          And you are rude, among other things. Face palm.

      • Reply appauled February 24, 2015 at 1:49 AM

        You’re opinion means nothing to me but could be dangerous to others. Be a responsible human being and stop touting you’re half baked ideas on public forum where they do more harm than good!

        • Reply Natalie February 25, 2015 at 3:54 AM

          There is such a thing as freedom of speech. I believe opinions such as these are a case of misplaced blame. I find it odd to place so much weight on an article. The people sho may find this dangerous need something, but censoring others’ freedom of speech seems like an unfair symptom of so called depression rather than a reasonable cause.

      • Reply Smurf March 18, 2015 at 2:52 AM

        You’re a mystical idiot.

      • Reply steelflower17 March 27, 2015 at 9:02 AM

        You said that this is all about me.Well no.My case of depression is not about me.

        The woman who’s daughter I am is dying for 4 illnesses.The woman who’s sister I am is more depressed than you can believe.And if there is one I in this is that I lived for them and to witness their suffering.If it was about me I would have died 2 years ago.This is the only I in my story.The rest is them!

    • Reply laine August 20, 2013 at 5:42 PM

      what many do not realize is depression can and most likely is the reaction to food allergies and being toxified by the current diet of industrialize nations. that is why you see it much more in the modern societies. (that is why its inherited, the offspring have the same sensitivities and once toxified early in life you struggle for a lifetime) to all depression patients i would have yourself tested for food allergies. wheat/gluten overdoes can be a big component, which rules the modern diet. a depression patient should first start out with allergen sensitivities first and begin a total detox of and elimination of allergens, next move on vitamin deficiencies. then move into sluggish digestive systems and lymph systems (all things you can do for yourself no prescription needed once you have your allergy test). use holistic docs and non prescription remedies. today’s medical community is into treatments and not cures, and the treatments go on forever. holistic docs look for causes and cures, stay away from traditional docs who treat symptoms. look into mark hyman too and innovative secular md who believes in curing. toxicity is a gradual poisoning will cause people to go turn on themselves and loose their happiness. educate yourself there is always a cure that the medical community is not willing to share with you or use. they are evil, stay away from them.
      this is a start. participation in scheduled exercise, we are built to be very active as humans. sunshine is important too. God Bless everyone and pray you find your depression cure, as its not God’s plan for your life. your food is your medicine. from personal experience, i went completely on organics (which means i ate everything i wanted like before just food free of pesticides chemicals hormones antibiotics and was never deprived like a diet) and immediately i looked 10 yrs younger in the face. within three months i went to the weight of my 20s, i looked 20 yrs than my age and all my grey hair started going in my natural brunette color……. i never felt bad or had illness, but clearly i was toxic and poisoned. those that have illness or aliments you have got be thoroughly toxic. those of you who are depressed severely toxic.

      *if your adventurous look into the origins of diet and realize different races and blood types need and tolerate different types of foods (modern medicine is not telling your that, they want to treat you for life and give you rx’s because you have conditions). if you eat for your type you will be healthy and many of today’s aliments will never affect you.

    • Reply dan t justice September 20, 2013 at 3:03 AM

      This guy is a fraud…
      I,ve seen people attacked this way because the word “I” or “me” is used in a sentence a thousand times. Hes trying to turn an emotion into a gramatical error and its just pure BS.
      So a rape victim who is depressed is just selfish? They should just change thier thought paterns… Hey look!< I said they, that must mean im not self centerd!

      • Reply A realist February 5, 2014 at 7:41 PM

        well said

    • Reply justin October 2, 2013 at 6:04 AM

      Some depression is just in the mind. Most though, has to do with biological/physiological psychology. There are people with weak minds only and just need some philosophy to put them on the path to a better life. There are countless more, who no matter what they do with their mind, will also have to exercise, change their diet, balance gut flora, curb neural inflammation, take herbs/supplements or in a last resort meds. Calling depression selfishness is ignorant, un-empathetic and causes damage.

    • Reply Lindsay October 9, 2013 at 5:16 AM

      GREAT ARTICLE!!!!!!!!! 100% AGREE.

      There are some people commenting on this article explaining how they are diagnosed with depression and how they completely disagree. I mean just the fact that you are using the internet is pretty cool! There are millions of people in this world who don’t even have access to the internet. C’MON people, life can be much worse. Embrace what you have and stop feeling sorry for yourself. No matter how horrible you think your life is, remember that there are probably thousands of people who wish to be in your shoes.

      • Reply hiway202 October 9, 2013 at 9:17 AM

        Except for what you just mentioned isn’t depression. Depression is caused by a chemical imbalance in the brain. Of course there are other types of depression, like depression caused by traumatic events and such. My depression is combined as both, but I will refrain from talking about it because that would be so “selfish” of me and, according to some, attention seeking. And I’m sure NO ONE wants to be in my shoes. Yes, everyone has problems, and some people have it worse, but that doesn’t mean that other peoples’ problems aren’t anything at all!

        “You have to embrace what you have and quit feeling sorry for yourself.” But people with depression don’t just sit around and think, “oh, poor, poor me. I just broke my iPod. Everyone, feel sorry for me.” That’s not how it works! And also, do you think we want to be depressed? I sure as hell don’t and I have yet to meet anyone who does!

        You are very lucky to not be able to suffer from depression. TRUE depression, like a chemical imbalance or suffering a traumatic event. And if you did suffer from a traumatic event and you didn’t get depression then you are amazing and I wish I could be like you. But I’m doomed like this forever, and it’s not my fault.

        • Reply Lindsay October 9, 2013 at 10:00 AM

          I do not believe you are doomed! That is a little much! Sorry, but saying you are “doomed” is ridiculous! I would think you were doomed if there was mass murderer standing in front of you revving his/her chainsaw. Saying something so negative like that is your problem right there! You saying you are doomed is just ridiculous!

          Sitting on the internet googling the word depression is not going to make anything any better.

          Depression is a controversial subject. I am sorry, but I believe there is no reason to feel sorry for yourself.

          • hiway202 October 9, 2013 at 1:03 PM

            I don’t just “sit on the internet and google the word depression” I found this on a depression support group (someone posted it and talked about how it made them feel) And I don’t just sit around feeling sorry for myself.

            By the way, is living with a rapist that no one believes is a rapist count as being doomed, or am I still being ridiculous?

      • Reply Mr Cellophane November 13, 2013 at 9:32 PM

        Holy crap, Lindsay. Fuck you. Absolutely fuck you.

        When I read your comments (and frankly, when I read Toma’s article, so this is just as much a reply to him), I hear a naive 14 year old who likes to hear herself talk, and who says “You know, cigarettes are bad for you. You should totally stop,” to a smoker.

        And “Hey, I’m sure if you just try to be their friend, they’ll love who you are!” to a victim of severe bullying.

        And “Don’t you realize you touched that doorknob already? That’s just silly! It’s already locked!” to someone with obsessive-compulsive disorder.

        And “C’mon, don’t feel sorry for yourself. Some people in Africa don’t even have food. Eat up!” to someone with anorexia.

        And “You know, if you got a job, I’m sure you could save up money and buy yourself a house pretty soon!” to a homeless person.

        And “C’mon people, life can be much worse! Saying you’re doomed, now that’s just ridiculous!” to someone with major depressive disorder. …..Oh, wait.

        Changing the way you think is one component of tackling symptoms of depression (just like it is one component of tackling the symptoms of literally any mental illness, including addiction). ONE component. Not the ONLY component, and certainly not an EASY component to address. Combating ingrained, deeply supported, deeply habituated, often chemically rooted thought patterns with new, unfamiliar (“happy”) thought patterns is incredibly difficult and takes months, years, decades to grasp.

        And treating thoughts as something completely distinct from chemicals is ludicrously inaccurate. Human beings have thoughts because we have chemicals in our brains. If neurons did not communicate chemicals to each other every time you thought “Man, I want a cheeseburger,” you would not want a cheeseburger. You would not have that thought. Thoughts ARE chemical transmissions.

        Nobody denies that maladaptive thought patterns are part of mental illness — it is why psychotherapy is often stressed as an important aspect of treatment. Along with lifestyle changes. Along with medication. Along with finding social support. By reducing the idea of cognitive changes (arguably the most complex and difficult aspect of treating mental illness) to a simple “Cheer up, silly!” you are invalidating millions of people’s real struggles. Completely fucking invalidating.

        God, what a horrendously shallow, bitchy, ignorant, fucked up thing to say. I’m sorry if the incredibly dark and complex thoughts that a depressed person experiences are beyond your naive grasp — no, they are not as simple and cinema-ready as oh-no-there’s-a-chainsaw-murderer-in-the-next-room-so-I’m-allowed-to-feel-distress. But DON’T YOU DARE presume to say, so matter-of-factly, that something does not exist just because the idea is too complex, too abstract, and too far outside your own daily experience for you to grasp. Fuck you, fuck you, and fuck you.

        And fuck Toma, too. Ignorant son of a bitch.

        • Reply Toma November 27, 2013 at 1:50 PM

          Read this short book, then get back to me.

          http://www.amazon.com/Proof-Heaven-Neurosurgeons-Journey-Afterlife/dp/1451695195

          • Raddmiral May 13, 2014 at 7:09 AM

            Nice, replying to an honest comment with a sales pitch. Go to hell.

        • Reply Nobody December 21, 2013 at 12:30 AM

          Mr Cellophane: …you are right on…you nailed it! Couldn’t agree more. People who’ve never suffered severe depression tend to way over-simplify what it really is & how to deal with it…it’s like they are annoyed by it and feel it’s only a decision away from being alleviated! That only shows their lack of knowledge as well as compassion. Thank you for setting the record straight here!

        • Reply A realist February 5, 2014 at 7:53 PM

          I have just read this mans article and to be honest i think it is back tracking asking you to read another article,I think you put everything so wonderfully,it says next to please leave a comment to keep it nice but the small minded little man TOMO wasnt being nice when he labled depression so cruelly,I hope no one in his family ever need him emotionally and to be honest it wouldnt suprise me if this man now has blood on his hands,Depressed people take everything to heart,i know and reading this has just made me feel totally worthless so thanks Tomo you truely are a fucking twat…………
          Im glad you replied to him Mr Cellophane,you helped me,your a good person

    • Reply angelmom2584 October 12, 2013 at 8:02 PM

      I have suffered with depression on and off since I was 13, I am now 53, and I still go through depression from time to time. I am going through a rough patch at the present time and am in therapy now. I have a husband who has verbally abused me for the majority of our married life. I am sure you can understand what 30 years of verbal abuse does to a person-it seriously affects one’s confidence and just entire way of thinking about themselves, especially when I suffer with depression to start with and he knows that. There is a history of major depression in my family as my dad suffered with it the majority of his life (he passed away New Years Eve 2011), and I have 2 sisters who are narcissistic).is I have always been a faith-filled Christian person, and my relationship with GOD has always been very important to me and always will be. I just know that depression, in part, stems from anger and unresolved feelings and/or situations, and I think you may have a point about selfishness, but it’s not the entire story. There is much more to depression that that. People don’t enjoy being depressed, it’s a miserable state of being for those of us so seriously affected regularly by this mental health disorder.

      • Reply Cat December 3, 2013 at 9:29 AM

        God bless you. I’m a 16 years old girl and currently going through a big depression. For some reason, you’ve really touched me. Many members of my family have had depressions. Some of them even attempted suicide. I’ll pray for you to have a beautiful life filled with love. You deserve it. ♥

      • Reply newzbug December 3, 2013 at 2:20 PM

        @angelmom1584 I am right up there with you. I don’t really know when it began, but I was diagnosed in 1990. And have been on meds ever since. I hope you and your family find the peace you so are looking for. check out the site of Inspire. It’s a great place to find comraderie and friendship with others like you. I have been there a year and find it offers a great support system.

    • Reply Toma haiku is as intelligent as average american October 15, 2013 at 4:27 AM

      Don’t praise this ignorant shithead, he is doing a lot of damage to the psychological sciences for every hillbilly dumb enough to believe it. He is in fact a potentional liability in the advancements of humanity. Congratulations on aiding him in fucking up further generations beliefs and understanding of the human body and the world around us.

    • Reply Haley October 30, 2013 at 12:06 AM

      You are an ignorant person who obviously doesn’t even know how depression goes. Being sad over something isn’t being depressed. Depression can be a chemical imbalance. You can’t feel love so love isn’t real? You don’t love your parents spouse or children? This was ignorant crap please don’t spew shit that you don’t even know about.

      • Reply Ed October 30, 2013 at 8:56 AM

        There is no such thing as a chemical imbalance,people.

        • Reply Nobody December 21, 2013 at 12:37 AM

          OMG! U look like a real nut case with a chemical imbalance> As a woman of science I can unequivocally state you don’t know what the heck your talking about!

          • Lily March 23, 2015 at 4:11 PM

            Yes, the greatest irony about people who deny the existence of chemical imbalances and mental disease – they invariably display symptoms themselves. Remember Whacko Tom Cruise’s TV rant at Matt Lauer? He looked and sounded exactly like an untreated bipolar sufferer on a paranoid bender.

    • Reply Arminosaur November 5, 2013 at 1:18 AM

      I hope arrogance isn’t contagious, or I may be in danger by reading this article.

    • Reply Jeff November 6, 2013 at 11:52 AM

      Wow, when I read this, I fully expected to see at least one piece of peer reviewed material… One shred of scientific fact. I guess it’s just another realiipus zealot keeping in line with ignoring evidence and creating a false reality of their own. I assume by you writing this that you’re an MD? DO? PA? NP? What credential do you own besides being another clueless keyboard scientist who spreads falsehoods? I also assume that by your logic, you think schizophrenia, personality disorders and the like are all “selfish” as well. Please, please, please tell me your credential which make allow you to accurately make these asinine comments

    • Reply v November 21, 2013 at 9:15 AM

      “Why in poor countries are reported rates of depression significantly less than in western countries? We have everything, they have nothing. You’d think that somebody who doesn’t have food for their family would feel pretty fucking depressed, yet no, it’s the western businessman with everything who feels depressed”

      Because depression as a medical disease most likely isn’t a societal ailment or a ‘thought’ ailment. If it doesn’t make sense for someone who’s wealthy to be depressed, I don’t know why suddenly that wealth and all it brings suddenly becomes the reason for the depression.
      Depression is probably a disease that I personally suspect is caused by some ubiquitous endrocine disruptor or some such that simply doesn’t exist in large quantities in undeveloped nations, yet. (We only test compounds in everyday use for toxic effects…mental health issues aren’t exactly things we look for in lab rats.)
      Last I checked, these same poor countries don’t exactly have strong family bonds and morals. Places where rape and abandonment of kids is commonplace. That sounds pretty selfish to me.
      Besides which, where do you get the idea that these fictitious ‘poor people who only work to bring home food to their family’ are happy? http://psychcentral.com/news/2012/10/31/survey-finds-depression-twice-as-common-among-the-poor/46942.html
      Importantly, I find it hard to believe that we have any sort of proper studies that truly measure depression in the poorest of countries. These places don’t even have regular medical care, much less mental health treatments.

      What you have is a theory that is already disproven by the fact that the poor people in America are more likely to be depressed than the rich people here.

      • Reply Toma November 27, 2013 at 3:29 PM

        “What is unclear is if there is a relationship between poverty and depression, they said, noting depression could lead to poverty in some circumstances, poverty could lead to depression in others, or some third factor could be causing both.”

        http://bit.ly/154R69D

        • Reply Anonymous January 9, 2014 at 10:35 AM

          I’m wondering if you have ever heard of Maslow’s hierarchy of needs?

    • Reply Louise November 27, 2013 at 11:13 PM

      Now yes I ‘ve said this all along, the only way to get deppressed is you must feel sorry for your poor little self and slip into that pit and give yourself permission to go there or not. But you must catch yourself before you go there. Jealousy has a lot to do with it. Look at those poor people in the Phillipeens they have no home to relax in. Thats depressing!!! Be thankful !!! thats how I beat that ugly word. I wont use it. If I’m alittle sad, I kick myself in the ass so to and thank God for all I have, I’ve got a bath and a half and so much more I cant tell here. Happy getting yourself out of depression and stay away from those Quacks who call themselves Doctors. Lookup how they make money from your sadness. Billions per year. And I have someone in my house who they hooked. Makes me sad. But depression I quick out the door. Thanks for this article !!!!

      • Reply Toma November 27, 2013 at 11:21 PM

        I agree with so much of this comment. Thanks, Louise.

      • Reply Anon November 28, 2013 at 12:18 AM

        You said it yourself; “when I get a little sad.” That is not what depression is, just a little sadness. It is this deep, complex illness. My doctor asked me when was the last time I was truly happy. I sat there, trying so hard to remember, but it has been so long, I can’t. I believe my depression is just as real as my Lupus. And like the Lupus, I have my bad days and my good days. It is not because I am jealous of material things. If you knew me, you could ask anyone I know, they know is all I want is to be happy.

        To the person that said something along the lines of, you have to let God will it; believe me, I have tried so many times. My ex fianceé is Muslim and that is a major belief, “inshallah or in God’s will” and he is receiving professional help for his depression. Maybe it is God’s will for us to seek his help.

        • Reply kaatie December 7, 2013 at 11:41 AM

          I remember thinking the same thing I can’t remember an instance of happiness ever,I am incredibly happy now ,I feel utter joy most days even though there is constant hiccups and disaster around me,I never saw a doctor or anything.,I filled some sort of spiritual void and it fixed me,I also stopped thinking about myself all the time ,and most of all faced really dreadful things that I had to strengthen and live through that left me no time to be depressed,it’s a luxury this is why you never see people eating cicadas in Africa with depression.this is a spiritual illness.

          I love what you’re writing toma.

      • Reply newzbug November 28, 2013 at 4:32 AM

        Louise,

        You are the kind of person who has no intelligence when it comes to illnesses and their causes. you appear to be too smart to allow yourself to get sick. Nice to know how do you do it? How about when you feel bad, put a sign on yourself and allow US to kick you in the ass

    • Reply Josh December 10, 2013 at 6:12 AM

      Never in all my life have I ever read such a beautiful, consummate masterpiece
      of ostentatious ignorance, tenuous incite and crippling inability to really understand the human mind.
      I think you should really leave it to the professionals who, let’s face it, actually know what they are talking about. Just because you think you possess an oracular knowledge of religion and philosophy, scarcely makes you an authority on this delicate topic. The very fact you’ve published your inflammatory views in such a foolish way is concerning. I as an atheist wouldn’t publicly judge or stigmatise you for your creed, but I will seeing as you’ve inflicted it upon us in such a tragic manner.
      It’s the easiest thing in the world to judge rather than to understand, from this it seems that the sheer ubiquity of mental illness in our society is too abstract and too great a challenge for your limited remit of human understanding. Ignorance is born from fear.
      Jesus himself was feared rather than understood.
      Science has provided profound evidence for the existence of depression and other mental illnesses alike.
      You should try basing your opinions on something more solid.

    • Reply Keith December 18, 2013 at 10:34 PM

      All of you are mindless followers of an idiotic prophet. Depression does exist. It is a result of the chemical interactions of the brains neurons. Some people don’t have genuine depression. They just have crapy lives and are too lazy to change things. As for the 4% of us that do have the neurological disorder, you belittle us by your in educated rantings. You wouldn’t say that someone who is paraplegic is lazy so why do you think it is OK for you to say this about us. You should be ashamed of yourselves.

    • Reply sgtaponeAnderson December 20, 2013 at 3:47 AM

      just the motivation I needed to put a 7.62 through my brain. depression is selfish. human beings are selfish. thank you for your honesty, everyone always says get help and stuff. well you cant help selfish so peace :)

    • Reply blahblah1233445 January 11, 2014 at 6:26 AM

      His writing style is worst than a commercial hollywood movie.

    • Reply brendon January 26, 2014 at 12:01 PM

      I don’t agree with you because I know a lot about reality and chemistry. The entropy lets say and Iso of such. (visa versa since ur a dumb shit I thought I would put this in brackets) I get what you say, but you are being an ignoramus.

    • Reply jane February 8, 2014 at 12:25 AM

      This is honestly one of the most ignorant and closed minded things I have ever read. Depression is an illness caused by chemical imbalances and the fact that there are still people who believe it to be something the person can just “snap out of” is crazy to me. While I do not wish depression on anyone, I hope that someday you understand the hell that it is- trust me, if people could just cure their depression as easily as you’re saying, they would.

      • Reply Estaban Haroon February 9, 2014 at 2:29 PM

        “This is the most close-minded thing I’ve ever read. Now let me tell you my perspective on things that is the correct way to look at things without a shadow of doubt and not even try to listen or understand anything you said.” Gj

    • Reply amelia March 7, 2014 at 8:47 AM

      you’re not factual, you’re ignorant.
      studies show their becomes a chemical imbalance in the brain when one develops a brain disorder, when developing depression the emotional/memory part of the brain shrinks, therefore you become numb and feel like you can’t do anything. being a sufferer from depression or in your words “Selfish” i don’t actually say “i hate my life” or ” i’m so ugly” or “my parents don’t care about me” i just want to feel happy and sane, but i’m washed over with this feeling of sadness that never seems to cease, i want to recover, i don’t yearn for the feeling of wanting to die. It’s purely a complication in the brain, the brain is easily messed, because the brain is the most complex organ.
      I may never change your opinion, or you may not even consider my opinion to be valid.
      But if you can be so ignorant and horrible about brain disorders
      i’m allowed to speak my opinion, from experience.

      • Reply amelia March 7, 2014 at 9:03 AM

        also, i am appreciative of what i have
        but depression turns you into a different person
        you become a shell of anger, numb, grief and nothing
        i’d much rather be poor and barley have anything yet be happy, than have everything i need yet feel deep sadness. when one is depressed, they feel like they have nothing because they’re simply ill. Just because depression is in you mind, doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist.
        For example blood clots in the brain, you can’t see it therefore it can’t be real, right?
        Because that’s the logic i’m receiving from your article.

        also depression can be caused with mix up of hormones, i’m 13, and no i’m not just purely stating i’m “depressed” and i’m really just a stupid teenager that has crazy hormones.

        because i actually have something wrong with my hormones therefore resulting in feeling the way i am.

        I feel your article is unfair and ignorant, You’re just venting out your frustration on the ill, which isn’t right.

        My opinion once again may not be “valid” to you, but as you could spur such an ignorant opinion, i felt obliged to tell you mine.

    • Reply chris March 28, 2014 at 8:44 AM

      Depression is an illness but too many drugs make it worse you can sort it yourselfelf
      lf

    • Reply Erin March 29, 2014 at 5:58 PM

      I disagree. I think that poor folks are more depressed than rich people, they just won’t admit it. My proof is common sense. Nice article by the way, I just disagree. I think that it’s f***cked up to be happy that you’re working at Burger King and sucking somebody else’s d*ck for a living, sorry…

    • Reply Anon April 1, 2014 at 2:52 AM

      Ridiculous. Poor countries diagnose it less, that doesn’t mean it doesn’t exist there. And telling someone with a real, severe depression to think positive to make it go away is like telling a diabetic to think about making more insulin.

    • Reply M April 1, 2014 at 11:54 AM

      “There are chemical imbalances, yes, but they are caused by negative thoughts, not the other way around.”
      Curious, what is your basis in this statement? I am assuming you study or studied psychology/the human brain? Perhaps you should include this information more readily in your article, that would make it a lot more credible. I see you have received a lot of criticism here, so including specific study information relating to this statement as well as the rest of this article should certainly cut down on that.
      Or perhaps these claims are based on other people’s research? If so, I think some credit it very much due.

    • Reply Ed April 5, 2014 at 10:44 PM

      Sorry, but i think everyone’s here is depressed… and also are selfish :D, i’m depressed and i’m being selfish too; maybe everyday. If not… what the hell are we doing reading this insane amount of comments? Well, that’s it. We’re depressed. So… advide: turn off the pc/notebook/smartphone/tablet or whatever you´re using and go to sleep/walk/meet someone/do any thing that’s not this :D

    • Reply Johnathan Murphy April 7, 2014 at 6:54 AM

      Everyone ignore that idiot “Juan Legerta” he would argue with a snail for going the wrong way. Hes obviously so depressed he wants to caps lock and cuss everyone here into misery with him, ya know misery love company.

    • Reply Nothankyou April 10, 2014 at 10:20 AM

      You’re not happy. You’re selfish.
      Happiness is not real. It is something that exists in people’s minds. It can not be seen or touched or identified by sight or spirit in the real word. It’s all in people’s heads. People, in stereotypical attempts to make what they do look relevant, identify endless causes for happiness, and for each cause there is an unnecessarily complex reasons. My contention is that there is but one true cause, and it has to do with your centre.

      You’re not religious. You’re selfish.
      God is not real. It is something that exists in people’s minds. It can not be seen or touched or identified by sight or spirit in the real word. It’s all in people’s heads. Churchgoers, in stereotypical attempts to make what they do look relevant, identify endless causes for God, and for each cause there is an unnecessarily complex solution. My contention is that there is but one true cause, and it has to do with your centre.

    • Reply AnnaMateo May 15, 2014 at 3:22 PM

      Depression is caused from conformity to a society you don’t agree with. Living under your potential. Allowing others to step on your head to get over you. Lack of exercise. Psychological beatings from childhood. It isn’t selfishness, sometimes it is from being too generous. Persons entire life is giving and nothing comes back. Selfish people are rarely depressed. They don’t care what anyone thinks of them or how their behavior effects others, why would they be depressed.

      • Reply Raddmiral May 15, 2014 at 5:09 PM

        Thank you for saying what I wish I could have said.

      • Reply Natalie May 15, 2014 at 11:33 PM

        In my experience, it’s about caring too much. So much that it causes one to vigilantly pursue evidence that others also care and empathize to the same degree.

        My depression is selfish when I allow it to grow. Maybe you’re right about what causes it, but I can’t say I’m especially generous or giving of myself. What do have is reserved for myself. Maybe according to your definition, I’m not depressed.

        I have people close to me who are depressed and giving of themselves but clearly expect something back in every case. Giving is great when it comes from within and not an associated disappointment from what isn’t reciprocated. It’s a pattern that leads to drawn out misery and self loathing.

    • Reply Freud June 28, 2014 at 1:19 AM

      The article is written by someone who have absolutely no knowledge about psychology or neurology, which is really sad. The more sad thing is that many people started believing in the misinformation he provided. My facebook friend gave me the link of this page to have some laughs. I have no idea that how he got into such incredibly stupid blog :D I’ve treated hundreds of patients and trust me, depression is an illness. Don’t trust me? No problem; just do a quick google search about the brain scans of a depressed person. Yes, you can see the signs of depression with the help of brain scans. Sometimes depression can be caused by low dopamine levels. If your views about depression are still not changed then I challenge you to take meds that lower the dopamine levels, and then i’ll ask you if depression is selfishness or an illness.

    • Reply LogicOverEmotions July 9, 2014 at 12:56 AM

      I have to agree with Venkat, this article is brilliant Toma. You appear to be quite qualified, seeing as all the posts on here that disagree with you are nothing more than profanity and ignorant anger, that is. I am yet to see any of these comments actually bring up a logical argument to your article.

    • Reply Bob July 11, 2014 at 7:15 PM

      Pathetic article— Depression is a neurological problem with complexities beyond your knowledge. Your ignorance is abhorrent. Depression can be about one’s self or about a slew of other things: various political injustices, social constructs, inescapable socioeconomic entrapments. To suggest that ALL depression can be classified under the moniker of selfishness is hysterically absurd. This article is a waste of time. I would never consider reading another one of this writer’s articles considering the rubbish contained in this one. Do not undermine a mental condition. Do not trivialize other peoples’ emotions and mentalities. I value your opinion as a human being, but it is, without question, misguided and utter ignorance.

    • Reply Jennifer July 14, 2014 at 9:27 AM

      First, I would like to know Toma, if you have experienced depression before?
      Second, I would like to see some citation of where exactly you get your information, for instance “… in poor countries are reported rates of depression significantly less than in western countries.” How exactly do you even get your information in general? Before commenting on one of your articles I took the liberty of reading a few more of your “articles” and decided to try to be a bit open minded about your opinions. However it becomes quite hard to take your information seriously when in a few articles you have entertwined foul language within your blog such as words like “pissed” “WTF” and others. It really does discredit your opinion. Seeing as you have no certification or proof that you have done some extensive research in Depression and this is simply just a blog, I hope that people who are currently depressed and in search of help do not take this blog seriously. If you find yourself feeling depressed, I urge you to get help. It’s not easy to will yourself into positive thinking. I speak from personal experience,although I know and understand that someone else’s experience will not be identical to my own. In my case while i felt depressed. It was more feelings of guilt of things I shouldn’t have felt guilty of. Things that weren’t my fault or were even out of my own control. There are many reasons for depressions, not simply cause by one’s own selfishness.

  • Reply Lee March 10, 2013 at 12:19 PM

    It takes an immense amount of guts to post something like this, I commend you for that. However, I believe your reasoning is flawed in the way that you that depression isn’t real because it’s all in the head. Guess what else is only in the head, everything that’s not tangible. This statement would assume that emotions aren’t real, theories aren’t real, arguments aren’t real. Nothing is real. Also, where are your sources on ‘chemical imbalances are caused by negative thoughts’? I acknowledge that this is still in the unknown and the cause of depression is still not specifically confirmed, but that does not justify you asserting your own beliefs and claiming them to be true. Have you ever been depressed? Have you ever had a close family member be depressed? You would quickly find out that your article is not that sound in logic. You probably have many friends and family that are diagnosed with depression, but you don’t know. Why? Because they are trying. They are trying to not make your life miserable, they are trying to become better people. They are not sitting in their homes leeching off people, because they are outside working in the real world to get themselves somewhere. It may not seem like it on the outside, but to these people each and every day may be an energy-draining struggle.

    • Reply Toma March 10, 2013 at 12:29 PM

      Thanks for your comment, Lee. I recognised the arrogance of the title when I wrote it, but I do believe it’s true.

      Real guts (and/or stupidity) would be posting something like this if I hadn’t personally seen or experience depression. I have seen it at it’s extreme, and it is for that very reason that I stand by my post. I saw a perfect family destroyed by ‘depression’, and ultimately it turned out that it was simply a way for one of the partners to escape. They were being selfish. This is but one case I have witnessed. There are others.

      The fact is, if something is more important than one’s self then the depression will never take hold because the force of that other is greater. If one places one’s self ahead of that other then the depression will take hold. It is that placement that makes one selfish. I ask you to have a read of my article on The Centre. It’s an important principle.

      • Reply Grace Evon August 20, 2013 at 4:57 PM

        How dare you?! Many people close to me and myself are VERY depressed! I know some of your information is right from my time in HOSPITALIZATION but that is one idea! Look it up before you open your mouth next time and effend people!

      • Reply Anonymus Teenager August 26, 2013 at 10:37 AM

        I sincerely apologize if I come across in any negative way, but I only wish to share my opinion/current experience. Though what you say may be true for some, and I may just have a different mind set, but I do have depression (due to bullying, parent problems and such). I do realize I’m using the word I a lot, but unlike the people you have described, rarely it is that I think about myself. I care more about the well being of those that are around me; and again, unlike those you have described, my life goal is to ensure the happiness of others. I wish to bring them up, where as you told them to think as themselves as selfish. I may think of myself as selfish, as well as many other negative things but I hardly ever talk about myself like this unless necessary for project and such. Again, I apologize if I came across as rude, but thank you for taking your time to read this, if you did.

      • Reply Emma September 21, 2013 at 11:15 AM

        you are a little FUCKER> i have had clinical depression since I was in 2nd grade, I tried to HANG myself in my room after school. GO DIE. Unless you have had it more than half of your life, you are NO authority. That is unless you have a medical degree and a white lab coat…

        • Reply Killingspree September 28, 2013 at 12:34 PM

          Wow you sound like a good person to be around. You took life and family for granted and tried to hang yourself. NOW that is the DEFINITION of selfish.

          • Sarah October 4, 2013 at 1:28 AM

            Well of having depression is so awful, seems like you accepting lot would be much happier if we erased ourselves.

          • Person October 16, 2013 at 1:24 PM

            And you have just touched on the reason why most people are depressed, including me. Sure, my constant negative thoughts have something to do with it, but the underlying cause is because I have been ostacized by EVERYONE that I have met aside from three other people my age. And that really doesn’t help much, because they were ostacized just like me as a result, and I often blame myself.That ostacision started on day one of preschool and has never stopped.

            For Tomo’s primate brain, here is how it works in a few steps.

            1. You walk in to a room full of people you hope that you will be friends with.
            2. They all think you are some kind of wierdo and dont even give you the chance.
            3. You try anyway. And if you are strong enough you fight through the pain and try and try and try. And always fail.
            4. They hate you. They thought you were wierd before. Now they think you are annoying too.
            5. After hearing all of this for a lifetime, you begin to take the things they say deeply and seriously in your own head, leading you to hate yourself.

            You just another asshole. No different from most everyone else I have ever met.

          • Raddmiral May 13, 2014 at 7:21 AM

            This is the most truthful comment on this article. Thank you Person, for letting us know that there are other people out there who experience the same horrible things we do.

            Toma: Read this comment and answer this question: in such a case Person is describing, how is depression resulting from this circumstance caused by being selfish? Is it not instead the compassion we feel for other people, that we wish to share our time with them, to make their lives better, and grow with them in the process, and being denied that time, that instead makes people like me, and like Person, depressed?

            Answer this honestly and truthfully and all is forgiven.

      • Reply Eddie October 4, 2013 at 9:49 AM

        I have family members that have bipolar. Nothing has worked for them but therapy. When the therapy stops ( putting blame on others ),then what achievements were made disappear shortly. Since I’ve witnessed all their behavior on these drugs and nothing to suggest a wellness of any kind. The doctors are either a fraud or the patients are beyond any help we can give them. I don’t believe God has made them this way. No,they do chose to treat others as if they can’t control themselves. I believe its more than being selfish. I myself have had panic attacks. Zoloft helped and after some time later I’m fine now. Still I believe what your saying. Even then I had a lot of burdons with my company,among others was the sick people in my life that are still with me. I got rid of my failing company,sold my home,downsized a bit. Now my new job lets me travel to get away from the ill so they can’t bring me down again. That said,I’ve never felt better. But when I go home to rest its as if I’ve never left. They must love feeding off each others shortcomings is all I figure. They’re the most selfish people I’ve ever met. Or I work around the least self absorbed in the world?

        • Reply H October 4, 2013 at 1:34 PM

          Hi Eddie
          Its good that you try and distance yourself from people that get you down. Depression is “contagious”. Doesnt matter how happy or upbeat you are they will always find a way to bring you down. And no matter how much you love them, you cant help them. They love to wallow in their own self pity. Maybe one day when theyre old and sitting alone theyll realise that theyve alienated all their loved ones that tried to help them. Maybe then theyll come right or not. You just carry on as you are and be with people that share your happiness.

          • Mr Cellophane November 13, 2013 at 9:50 PM

            “They love to wallow in their own self pity.” What the actual fuck? I can’t believe mindsets like this exist.

            You are the problem. You. This fucking attitude right here.

  • Reply aprilwolfe March 18, 2013 at 7:25 PM

    It seems what you’re actually describing from your own situation is narcissism, not depression. Depression isn’t always–or ever–caused by a specific stimuli from a person’s life, i.e. their terrible job, their terrible car, the things their neighbors have that they don’t. Depression tends to have its roots in much larger circumstances that the depressed person knows she cannot control, more akin to a philosophical breakdown when a realization occurs that some problems may have no solution, no matter how hard you try. For instance, the war, the Steubenville rape trials, the Israeli Palestine conflicts. I don’t think it’s fair of you to trivialize the very real depression of others by assuming your experience is the litmus test for depression. Also, suffering from narcissism is very real, too. It destroys marriages and families, and it’s a persistent mental illness with high links to heart disease and stress. Though narcissism really is a form of self-centeredness, and perhaps it can be treated with what you describe in your post, but it will rarely disappear.

    • Reply Toma March 18, 2013 at 11:23 PM

      Thanks for your comment, April. I appreciate your effort in writing it. Unfortunately your comment epitomises everything that I despise about psychology. Too much science, not enough spirit. Each and every human issue has to be broken down into micro-issues with micro-causes, the end result of which is confusion and a path that has nothing to do with the actual origin.

      In this article I am not referring to narcissism, I am talking specifically about depression. Where psychology tends to treat these issues as separate, I analyse them from a spiritual standpoint and the cause is identical for both. Problems such as multiple-personality disorder, bi-polar disorder, depression, anxiety and narcissism stem exclusively from the human spirit, and all have a spiritual cause, not a scientific one. It may seem that I am trivialising depression through simplification, but I am not. My assessment is a spiritual one, not an intellectual one, hence it can not and should not be analysed intellectually. A big ask for some, I know.

      Having something in life greater than one’s self ensures no depression, no anxiety, and no fear. That something is an absolute centre. Mine is God. I can say that with absolute certainty and without hesitation. Ask a depressed person what their’s is and see what kind of answer you get.

      • Reply Hayley April 14, 2013 at 11:31 AM

        Unfortunately you’re very wrong, Toma. I am a Christian, and have faith in God. That didn’t fix me. I also started volunteering my time for a greater cause. While it helped stopped me taking my own life (I knew I couldn’t because I was being relied upon), it didn’t cure me. I wasn’t unhappy. I felt worthless, hopeless and like the world had too many problems that it was beyond fixing.

        I hope anyone reading your blog goes and gets advice from someone who actually understands mental illness, and seeks support from friends and family who love them. No one deserves to live with ‘the buzz’ as one of your commenters described it. Most people I know who falsely claim that depression doesn’t exist, or is selfish, either have lost someone to depression and find it easiest to deal with the loss in that way, or are looking to find a way to avoid having to act or care about people they know who suffer depression. Either way Toma, I’m praying for you.

        Ps. It’s taken me five years, but I have finally taken control of my illness, and am starting to make the most of my life and the gifts I’ve been given.

        • Reply Toma April 17, 2013 at 5:58 PM

          Hey Hayley. I appreciate your thoughts on the matter, so much so that I wrote a blog post inspired by your comment. I hope you will get my point.

          The most dangerous word in the English language

          • AshCrash June 15, 2013 at 6:29 PM

            You’re a real arrogant asshole… You say someone who’s depressed is being “selfish” because it involves “them”. Sorry but, that is not being “selfish” by any means. Many people have reasons for feeling the way they do and sometimes not everyone is strong enough to just pull-out of it. Not everyone has the mental capability to just say to themselves “I’m sad because of this but I’m being selfish so I need to just get over it” That’s so fucking stupid you make me sick. As a person who is familiar with depression I assure you that your thoughts are very flawed. Have you ever thought, gee, these events that occurred in this persons life are not going to be reversed and maybe there’s absolutely nothing they can do to change the situation or make it better… and you expect them to just get over it? You said your solution was “God”. Well, good for you. Not everyone believes in the man in the sky and that isn’t a solution for everyone. Quit being egocentric.

          • Toma June 16, 2013 at 11:34 AM

            At no point did I say that God is THE solution, only A solution, and my recommended one.

            I don’t expect people to simply click their fingers and feel better. I do expect them to come to a better understanding of themselves, and of the real causes of their suffering, which are the exact same causes for ALL of us. Things needn’t be complicated, but that’s not the same as saying they are easy.

          • Ugh, you disgust me. October 16, 2013 at 1:42 PM

            So you are taking some of the most fragile psyches you could possibly choose as a target audience and calling them selfish, and now evil all on the same blog?

            “Listen. You are NOT a bad person. You are a very good person whom bad things have happend to.” – Sirius Black

            So I wonder, then, who is really the evil one in this debate?

          • Ari October 16, 2013 at 3:15 PM

            Toma, you are as selfish as almost anyone else, are you not? You are no more perfect than the average Joe. You certainly are more self centered than Mother Theresa was. Yet you have never suffered from depression and she did. I know many self centered people who are free of depression and I know of some very selfless humans who suffer with depression greatly.

            Depression often manifests from fear. It is not a direct result of self centered ness. You are clearly no Mother Theresa and yet you are depression free. And on top of that you choose NOT to educate yourself on severe depression outside of your family situation and then post a very flawed and angry speech on how depression is selfish bullshit.

            There are so many self absorbed people out there who have never tasted depression and vice versa. You seem to conveniently ignore this fact.

      • Reply Andy Webb April 27, 2013 at 4:12 PM

        Toma, you are correct to an extent because its not the thoughts we have that make us depressed, its our attachment to those thoughts. Situational depression such as the death of someone we love or depend upon is often transient and directly related to the incident of loss but generally, if we don’t think about being depressed, we are less likely to feel it. I suffer with it on and off but mine is based around a complete and utter nihilistic view of the world which i now cannot shake. Existential depression can’t be cured by taking up a cause because the way you’ve trained yourself to think to put yourself there in the first place makes you question the value of the cause and even what ‘value’ is in the grand scheme of things. I believe its the distraction, not the cause that pulls you our of the spiral. I once spoke in depth to a Jehovahs Witness about the afterlife and their core beliefs of everlasting life after Armageddon and what-not. Even though the whole idea just came across as a preposterous work of fiction designed purely to suck in those who are at a wits end and vulnerable, looking for meaning, you could tell that the years of indoctrination his depressed mother had pushed him through had worked and he genuinely believed he was going to live forever.

        Keep yourself distracted, keep your eye on the ball and keep a firm grasp on what your idea of progress is and strive for it because when you lose track of these 3 cornerstones, it will find you. Selfishness has nothing to do with it.

        • Reply Toma April 27, 2013 at 4:28 PM

          Although I use the word selfish the more appropriate term would be self-centred, hence the reference to my article on The Centre. Whatever the reasons for depression they come from within, which is to say from one’s own centre. The dissolution of self cures that, such that whatever the cause is ceases to matter. It’s important that we free our minds, not distract them further.

          • Andy Webb April 27, 2013 at 4:56 PM

            Wouldn’t that suggest that depression is purely a symptom of us not living up to our ego though? The buddhists are keen on the whole disengagement with the ego in order to become enlightened but unfortunately, you end up with Nihilism waiting at the other end (speaking purely from my own perspective of course) and when you start to question causes, goals and progress and whether or not ‘progress’ as a concept even exists, it lands you in a state of complete cognitive dissonance towards all your previous goals. I have not been able to identify what progress is for some time now and because of it, when i cannot keep myself distracted, I slip in and out of depression. I don’t mean to come across disrespectful towards your beliefs and am aware this is likely to sound patronising but I have not been able to successfully convince myself that religion is a plausible step forward up to now and frequently turn to more self destructive routes such as alcohol. If you have any suggestions on how this nihilism can be combatted, I’d be very interested in hearing them because the usual response is ‘take up a cause’ and as you can see the problem then becomes cyclical.

          • Toma April 27, 2013 at 5:14 PM

            It’s not just Buddhism that emphasises the disengagement of ego. Christianity does also. He who loses himself will find himself, and so forth.

            If you haven’t already, you should check out Tony Robbins’ bit on the 6 Human Needs. Although I strongly disagree with the man on a lot of things, sometimes he manages to hit the nail on the head. Very briefly, we have core needs that must be met, and meeting those needs dictates our behaviour. Smoking for example fills a need, and quitting smoking does not mean we no longer have that need. Hence why we can leave alcohol, for example, and then go back to it. The need is still there. We must identify it and find other ways to meet it. The disillusion of ego is the most permanent way.

            The unwillingness of the ego to let go of the ego out of fear of Nihilism is the fruit of a rotten tree. It is a thought born of the ego, so how can we trust it’s objectivity?

      • Reply David August 4, 2013 at 5:22 AM

        Would you say Mother Teresa had something in her life that was greater than herself? I think so. Yet, she was very depressed. Your theory falls apart with one simple example.

        • Reply Toma August 4, 2013 at 6:39 AM

          It has never been close to concluded that she was clinically depressed. Most indications point to a sorrow born from a loss of faith. She is a wonderful case study for the power of the centre and it’s influence in our lives.

          • Arby August 5, 2013 at 12:41 AM

            I am not sure about Mother Teresa. Because the clinical depression category casts a pretty wide net I expect some medical professionals would label her depressed and be glad to prescribe a medication or two for her. Yes, that was tongue-in-cheek yet sadly probably true. Regardless, there are famous people that say they have struggled with depression. Charles Spurgeon, a profound English nineteenth century preacher, thought his depression was to keep him from being lifted up in pride (similar to a thorn in the flesh although I didn’t find where he spoke of it using those words). And, I have read that it was Winston Churchill’s dark outlook that kept him from believing Hitler. Whether or not that is true, he was still suffered from depression.

            To me, depression is a part of the human condition; spiritual in nature and self-centered yet not always selfish, just like anger or jealousy. Sure there are those wrapped up in depression like a three year old child denied a toy is in their anger yet depression can lead to a better spiritual place. It is what you make of it that matters. I believe that Spurgeon was a much better preacher having gone through what he did. God could have easily found an eternal optimist for that position yet he didn’t; he used a man that struggled with depression. Even for those written about in the Bible, we can debate if they were ever actually clinically depressed or not, yet isn’t their proclamations of joy, faith and repentance so much more meaningful after your read about their trials, pain and doubt? This isn’t to say that being depressed is desirable or noble, it is just one more thing we are naturally predisposed to becoming, yet it still may serve a purpose.

      • Reply Melany August 14, 2013 at 9:29 AM

        I’m sorry and YES everyone is entitled too theyre “Opinion” I agree with Toma 100% and let me tell you why…..I suffer from severe depression and I am 42 now & have been depressed ALL my life fell bad in 1994 when my father passed I was so depressed contemplating suicide because I just couldn’t grasp that God had too MY daddy so let me say this……I have been on the Prozac & the Klonopins & I was smoking reefer on a constant basis too keep my depression sustained but I just go tired of taking the meds all in all and I stopped taking them about a year ago & I STARTED THINKING POSITIVE….Yes my psychologist said my chemical balance is all fukked up but for some reason I didn’t believe that I couldn’t be healed some other way so I watched “The Secret” then I found this article & I was crying because what Mr Toma is saying is REAL…..If you knew ME & MY situation then you would ask me “How do you cope with all this BS?” I think POSITIVE & POSISTIVE things happen….YES some people are nuttier then a fruit cake I agree because I am one of them….I work I attend college & I’m always BROKE which is something I’m NOT used too nor will I ever be….I DONT agree with The Secret where they say THINK about having a car(for instance) & will randomly pop up in your driveway we all kno THAT wont happen but my point too everyone is just atleast TRY too be POSITIVE for a whole month & see WHAT happens……I get what people are saying about imbalances but I think that’s all in our heads too….God didn’t put us on this earth too be sad or depressed you just have too find an “Outlet” I LOVE my 3 Pitbulls I have so if I’m sad or even feeling a little down I will lay on the floor & they will start kissing me like crazy makes me LAUGH so I know depression is in my head & if YOU pray & keep thinking POSITIVE you wont be depressed or thinking about BAD terrible things happening instead of focusing on the GOOD!!! I used too do that “Negative” thinking ALOT got me NOWHERE so he makes a valid point. I have 5 different personalities and 4 of them are assholes but I haven’t seen one since I have been thinking POSITIVE so you should really remember when you were young you would say “I will try ANYTHING once” ok?? Try POSITIVE thinking then let me know how you feel I bet you will feel the burden lift OFF of your shoulders onto someone else!!!! Take Care….From Las Vegas,Nevada where you would have too be “Depressed” here because its hotter then SHIT for 4 months LOL =))

      • Reply justin August 31, 2013 at 7:34 AM

        Im of great depression and im a huge greek orthodox christian boy/man an my life is revolved around church Saturday and sunday school and will admit my gf too but i give and work for the things i have i try and give more then i receive and put you him her theyin place of i. . Infact people tell me i need to focus more on myself then others more often so why am i in doctor terms “depressed” and in your turms “selfish to a point of unhappiness”

      • Reply v November 21, 2013 at 9:33 AM

        I lost belief in god after I became depressed for no known reason. Why? Because the emotions I got from believing in god disappeared. When your beliefs that should for all intents and purposes give you positive emotions, as they have for most of your life, when you suddenly don’t have those emotions, you will not function properly.
        Belief in a higher spiritual power can only happen to those who can *feel* a higher spiritual power. Correlation isn’t causation. This isn’t a chicken and egg phenomenon either, not for me at least, I first lost my emotions, then I lost my belief.

        In any case, as soon as you say ‘x is a spiritual problem, science cannot change it’, there is nothing I or anyone else can say or do to change your mind anyways. You will always win in a debate, you will always think your spiritual way is correct, for I cannot match your firm beliefs and feelings.
        That’s the scary side of religion, when other people don’t matter as much as your beliefs.

    • Reply Jason August 15, 2013 at 8:59 PM

      Spot on Aprilwolfe. When I came across this article my thought also was that it was a description of narcissism, coupled with a terrific lack of sensitivity.

      There is a spectrum of depression ranging from the mildly miserable to the suicidal. Depression is recognised by all clinicians as a mental illness and there are complex factors behind its genesis ranging from child sexual abuse in the distant past, to neuro-chemical changes in the present. Overcoming depression is not merely a matter of telling someone, “You’re selfish” and having them magically emerge from the darkness.

      Toma apparently speaks from a limited experience with sufferers of this condition – I’ve never seen a more superficial treatment of the subject of depression than the above article. As much as one tries to clothe this with the superior garb of supposed spiritual profundity, it really demonstrates attitudes of a bygone era toward this disease in which it was seen as the suffer’s own faults. “Think happy thoughts!” people used to advise the depressed, as if depressed people never tried such self-therapies themselves.

      Anyone who visits the patients of a psychiatric hospital who lie in bed with faces as white as the sheets and who frequently need to be medicated in order to prevent self-harm or suicide, who experience the depressive co-morbidity of uncontrollable panic attacks and anxiety attacks, and tell them to snap out of it because they’re being “selfish” is almost deserving of whatever comes his or her way.

      It is also an myth to claim that depression is rare among poor people. The very article that Toma links to demonstrates that there is only a 3.5% differential between long-term depression in poor and wealthy countries. The World Health Organisation recognises that depression is a global problem, and has conducted significant research in poorer countries like Uganda and Chile into this issue. Depression is a worldwide problem.

      Depression is real. And it has a real and tragic impact on the lives of people – none of whom wish to be depressed. It should not be trivialised with out-of-date nostrums and platitudes by people who have neither the knowledge nor the experience to opine with any level of credibility on the subject. To claim that the root cause of such a complex ailment is personal selfishness is akin to claiming that someone with a nervous disorder just needs to take more Cod Liver Oil.

      Such views, in my opinion, proves only that mankind continues to suffer from his historic ailment: a fathomless lack compassion.

      • Reply Mr Cellophane November 13, 2013 at 10:12 PM

        Thank you, Jason. This is a very good critique.

        The more I read of Toma’s responses, the more I realize that his horrendously superficial and outdated argument stems from his mindset that faith is the cure for what ails ya. In one comment, he said that what he despises about psychology is that it is “too much science, not enough spirit.” What the fuck. What the actual fuck.

  • Reply notaloneinthere March 19, 2013 at 5:52 PM

    As a sufferer from depression, I think that there are a lot of misconceptions as to what exactly depression *is*.
    I find that many people assume that depression is a low mood, or being miserable, or unhappy. I, however, would explain it more like this:
    You described a beautiful day, sitting under a tree, with a breeze against your skin. Think of that scene, if you can, as a beautiful piece of music, stunning in its perfection. Now imagine a bad-quality recording of that music. All the perfection is there, all the beautiful notes and harmonies, but overlying it is a buzz that makes it hard to hear it properly, makes it difficult to enjoy its beauty. To a sufferer of depression the beautiful day you described is like the music, and the depression is like the buzz. It’s just there, constantly, dragging you down, filling your mind, making it difficult to think or do anything.
    I’ve had days like that. I’ve sat under the tree, and I’ve felt the breeze, and I’ve known with absolute certainty that the world was perfect, and beautiful, and made with love and attention to every detail, and I’ve known that my friends and family are wonderful people, who care for me as I care for them, and I’ve known that I would never in the world give up on this life, nor bring pain to those I love… but the buzz is still there.

    However selfless and spiritual you are, you still have to deal with the realities of life. You have to deal with hunger, or with pain, or with illness. You can deal with these things well, or you can deal with these things badly. Don’t get me wrong, many people deal with depression badly. You can be both depressed *and* selfish just as you can be feverish and selfish, or suffering from a broken leg and selfish… but that doesn’t mean that the illness itself is selfish.

    • Reply Toma March 19, 2013 at 6:02 PM

      A very heart felt comment.

      This is another article for another day, but as some people love to be happy and avoid suffering, others love to suffer and avoid happiness. While I most certainly am not implying that is your case, for I have no way of knowing that, I am stating that it is a choice. Suffering is as much a part of life as happiness, so it is not abnormal to prefer one over the other for whatever reason, but which one is up to you.

      I read your latest blog post. You honour yourself by honouring others first. Take the worst seat at the dinner table and let the host raise you to a better one in front of everybody. That is greater than any honour you could ever give yourself.

      • Reply shanman July 12, 2013 at 5:55 AM

        I completely understand how you feel, because you like a lot of people have only glimpsed.
        I’ve never had anything awful happen to me, my life is the epitome of domestic living but I’ve always felt this way, I don’t try to feel this way, and all I need to tell you is after I’ve gone through all of the positive thinking, and all of the distractions, it eventually just settles back in.
        Just because you’ve never experienced it, sir, does not mean it doesn’t exist.

  • Reply Sky April 16, 2013 at 11:38 PM

    Oh thanks. I just had an epiphany and cured a chemical imbalance in my brain.

    • Reply Toma April 17, 2013 at 5:58 PM

      So where did the chemical imbalances come from?

      • Reply Panda May 14, 2013 at 11:25 PM

        They come from genetic factors you can’t control, doctor.

      • Reply deltharac July 30, 2013 at 2:32 PM

        He is being sarcastic you ignorant prick. You just don’t know how much bullshit your article is, that’s why you couldn’t get his sarcasm. I hope you will get depression someday, then you can see how dumb you are.

      • Reply Steve. November 14, 2013 at 8:55 PM

        Where does god come from?
        You of all people should not need proof of anything FAITH AND BELIEF!!!!

    • Reply Nick June 10, 2013 at 5:07 AM

      There is absolutely zero evidence that depression is caused by chemical imbalances. Zero. There is evidence of correlation, but that’s to be expected. Wouldn’t you expect a brain that’s chronically said to have slightly different brain chemistry than one that’s not? Different neurotransmitters are released all the time depending on our physiological states. As long as psychiatry continues to use (or at least tries to use) an exclusively biological model to explain psychiatric illness, treatment for mental illness will never progress beyond what it is now, the madcap throwing of random mind-altering medications at symptoms while the actual root of the symptoms is ignored.

      • Reply Jess July 1, 2013 at 7:28 AM

        But they don’t just talk about ‘imbalances” they use, psychologists and cognitive therapy. As a person who has suffered from this ‘selfishness’ as you call it i take great offence. I had no idea what was wrong with me and tried Everything wordly possible to fix it before succumbing to SSRI medication. In my down or ‘selfish’ times as you called them, i either a) put on a very brave face or b) didn’t attend wherever i was mean to be so that i didn’t bring anyone else down. When i told people i was/had/have depression they were shocked. I totally understand what you think and at times i could pull myself through but why the F should life have to be such a struggle? So PLEASE don’t write silly things. Especially not about ‘God’. Come on…

        • Reply Toma July 1, 2013 at 7:37 AM

          Jess I don’t want to sound like even more of an a-hole but I need to make one thing perfectly clear to you and to other readers like you.

          The second that you take offence to this article you prove my point. Without ego one does not take offence.

          • Brendan August 3, 2013 at 3:13 PM

            That’s abusive MRA, logic, pal. You can’t reject all criticism as egotistical, you’re putting yourself in a bubble while sending out harmful beliefs.

            If you haven’t experienced depression, your opinion doesn’t really matter.

          • Nick August 3, 2013 at 6:51 PM

            It’s amazing how people are responding to this article and the comments without even remotely understanding the points actually being made. Also funny is when people accuse someone of making logical fallacies while in the same breath making ones of their own.
            “If you haven’t experienced depression, your opinion doesn’t really matter.”
            Wow. I didn’t know that experiencing depression was a requirement for completing training in psychiatry or clinical psychology. Otherwise, I guess none of their opinions really matter either.

          • Guy October 16, 2013 at 1:59 PM

            You are even more ignorant than Tomo, and that’s saying something. Of course you can be a psychiatrist or clinical psychologist and know just about everything there is to know about depression, but that is only skin-deep. To rephrase what Brendan said in a way that makes sense to someone as ignorant as yourself
            “If you haven’t experienced the pain of depression, your opinion really doesn’t matter.”
            It’s like being a surgeon operating on a broken leg. You can know everything there is to know about mending a broken bone, but if you have never broaken a bone yourself, how can you understand how painful it feels?
            “If you don’t share someone’s pain, you can never understand them.”

          • Raddmiral May 13, 2014 at 7:29 AM

            This is folly. To simply disregard all people who are taking offense to this article as “proving your point,” you neglect such factors as “confirmation bias.” Here’s a link for you so you can educate your lazy ass.

            http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Confirmation_bias

            Taking offense to an article does not imply that we are taking personal offense. It is possible to take offense on behalf of others, and on behalf of all people who have experienced depression and are currently living in a pit of black tar so thick it is actually causing them to see things that you cannot currently see if you are not experiencing it.

            The second you disregard the depressed, and the second you disregard anyone who disagrees with your own beliefs, is the moment you out yourself as an inexperienced, SELFISH, sadistic, uncaring fool.

        • Reply Nick July 12, 2013 at 7:06 AM

          “But they don’t just talk about ‘imbalances” they use, psychologists and cognitive therapy.”
          You’re right. Which doesn’t really support the whole “chemical imbalance” theory, does it? One of the main points of psychotherapy is to identify maladaptive cognitive patterns and behavior in order to change the way that the patient thinks and behaves which results in an improvement of symptoms. Changing the way you think to alleviate depression – isn’t that one of the main points of this blog post?

          • Jen July 12, 2013 at 7:30 AM

            And in certain circumstances, being able to identify destructive thought patterns and behaviors requires a change in one’s chemistry. To clear the air. To help assemble a foundation with which to awaken. Sometimes, for some people, medications, alternative treatments, whatever it might be, are necessary to clear the obscurity so that one can cultivate awareness and help him or herself with mindfulness. It isn’t black and white. Living a life free of debilitating depression requires different things for different people. A combo of meds and mindfulness for some, spiritual awakening for some, exercise and diet for some, all of the above for others.

            Life is not black and white. Sometimes we view things that way in order to bring control into our lives. To feel safe. We have all been guilty of that to some degree!

          • Nick July 12, 2013 at 8:15 AM

            A great comment, Jen. Let me try to clarify my thoughts on the matter.
            My issue with the “chemical imbalance” theory is that it is being used to misidentify the root of patients’ symptoms. I am critical of psychiatric medications because they are so often used in conjunction with the “chemical imbalance” theory, again, to obscure the root of the patient’s symptoms.
            Let’s get one thing clear: if a medical cause for the symptoms can be found, such as some kind of neurological or endocrine disorder, then that is the problem that should be addressed and treated, obviously, since that would completely solve the problem.
            However, the “chemical imbalance” theory that is being used so often in modern psychiatry refers to those psychiatric patients for whom, presumably, there is no medical cause to attribute the symptoms; and it is this “chemical imbalance” that is being touted as the root of patients’ depressive symptoms.
            This is the kind of depression of which I refer; and it is the type that I believe can only ever really be truly cured by changing one’s thinking.
            Perhaps you are right about medications, alternative treatments, etc. helping to clear the person’s mind enough to “cultivate awareness and help with mindfulness” as you put it. And if they do so, then great – but they’re not the cure. The key is that last part of your statement – cultivating awareness and mindfulness of oneself – and that comes from within, and ultimately doesn’t come from the medications. Again, I think that it is most important for people to find the true root of their symptoms in order to really address them.
            Modern psychiatry, however, is increasingly moving towards the simplistic idea that mental illness is caused by chemical imbalances which can therefore be “cured” by medications – and that is what I have issue with.

          • TJ August 5, 2013 at 6:58 AM

            Nick I’m glad you’re here, because it seems like Toma is
            being attacked by these offended readers that they are missing out
            the true purpose of this blog post. Meanwhile, Toma is coming from
            pure compassion while the rest is labeling him as an ignorant
            A-hole. If you people think and react this way then you are truly
            bound to depression. Toma is simply trying to shed some light into
            your dark lives, obviously the darkness is so deep that he failed
            to reach and touch these people. You can’t always rely on facts,
            science, or God. Sometimes you need to rely on YOU, believe on YOU.
            Science can fail you, God can fail you. But YOU can never fail
            yourself unless YOU let YOU FAIL YOURSELF. Ok, let’s say you’re
            depressed and everyday you TRY, you put on a smile, you isolate
            yourself to avoid affecting those important persons in your lives.
            And everyday you feel like giving up, asking why is it unfair to
            feel like this. First of all, CONGRATULATIONS you are fighting. But
            stop, why are you feeling obligated to live your life? Why are you
            so negative? Why are you so easily offended? You dont want to be
            depressed right? So why are you tryna argue with Toma, convincing
            him that depression is real? YOU believe in depression, and
            therefore YOU ARE DEPRESSED. If you live life thinking you’re
            normal start believing you’re not depressed, then you’ll start
            feeling normal. All of a sudden you don’t need the feel to isolate
            yourself to avoid affecting people, because all of a sudden you
            feel like you can managed to interact normally. Give yourself a
            shot, it may not happen in a day but your’e certainly starting to
            move forward. Believe in yourself. Because the fact that you exist
            is unbelievable enough. Kudos to those people who’re fighting
            depression and keeps on fighting. And a very inspiring one is Talia
            Castellano who recently passed away. The best medicine that can
            cure all diseases is Meds + your Spiritual faith. The meds may have
            failed Talia BUT for sure she passed away peacefully and
            spiritually content.

      • Reply Jen October 5, 2013 at 1:13 PM

        Nick, I’ve tried cognitive therapy, EMDR, medication, positive thoughts, and that dick sucking as a child won’t leave my head or the multitude of other traumas I endured. Please tell me what to do to ease those thoughts oh wise one. The last time I was gifted with abuse was 19. I’m 39. I’m tired. I’m tired of this battle. Antidepressants don’t work, 15 years of therapy hasn’t worked. My selfish ass is tired. I’m tired of fighting this. As I watched the news yesterday of that woman being killed by cops in DC, I was thinking that was a pretty damn cool way to go. Every year I’ve faced some big life-altering minor trauma I want fucking peace. I’m desperate for a peaceful year. Maybe a minor thing so I can try to deal with my demons. I don’t know. But trauma after trauma and turbulence has left me mentally tired!

        • Reply lencia October 5, 2013 at 1:40 PM

          OK I AHAD AGREED WITH U ON YOUR COMMENT THAT U SAY I AM NOT DEPRESSED I AM SELFISH. JUST STOP SAYING IT BECAUSE I DONT WANT TO HEAR THE SAME PHRASE OVER AGAIN. U SAID IT ONCE TOO MANY I’M NOT TALKING TO U ANYMORE!

        • Reply Toma October 8, 2013 at 3:09 PM

          I know you were addressing Nick here Jen, but the good Dr hasn’t been around so you’ll have to excuse me for stepping in.

          Have you read my post on PTSD by any chance? In it I discuss a few things which you haven’t mentioned trying, and why they may work. Basically if we are nothing more than a collection of experiences, and your experiences have been so extremely negative, it is no wonder that you suffer as you do. By dissolving your old self and being born anew, you will find the peace you deserve (and God knows you deserve it!).

  • Reply bob April 18, 2013 at 3:57 AM

    I cannot believe someone would say depression isn’t real. It is not selfishness. It’s pain that you constantly try to escape from every day, but can’t. It’s trying to hide it from the world as to not upset anyone else, which sounds more like selflessness to me. It’s trying to hold on to something so you don’t slip and fall forever. Depression is real. It is NOT selfish.

  • Reply kk April 24, 2013 at 7:16 AM

    This is the worst article I have ever read. I think YOU are suffering from selfishness. How dare you make less of the pain depressed people go through. I would know how that feels. My mother, who sat staring vacant at her bedroom wall for hours on end, or crying at insignificant things, she knows how depression feels. So take your article and stuff it where the sun don’t shine.

    • Reply Toma April 24, 2013 at 7:25 AM

      So when your mother was sitting there crying, was she thinking about you and your well being? I dare say she had her head in the same place as my article.

      • Reply Jolie July 29, 2013 at 6:50 AM

        Hello Toma, although everyone is entitled to their own opinion I have to disagree with this article. I do not see the correlation between depression and selfishness. This negative feeling is not selfish at all, it is an illness caused by genetic, psychological, biological, and environmental factors. You do not just combat depression effectively sitting under a tree or feeling the breeze. It would be a great solution but for most of us,its not. If you do not care for yourself, it seems a bit selfish that someone expects you to provide the well being for others. Whatever triggered this depression whether it is caused by any of the mentioned factors should not be taken lightly. My parent suffers from bi polar disorder/depression/anxiety and with the help of medication is doing a whole lot better. I also suffer from depression/anxiety with no apparent reason like my parent. A mere positive outlook would have not and did not suppress his behavior. Your mind is powerful, and to perceive depression as a selfish feeling is selfish. Just one question, if you believe depression is selfish do you think you may never seep into depression because you want to avoid being selfish ? Thank you very much.

        • Reply Toma July 29, 2013 at 8:23 AM

          My argument is that depression is caused by a self-centred mindset. Sitting under a tree will not be likely to fix one’s depression, but the mindset that permits one to fully appreciate sitting under a tree will.

          I do wonder whether experiencing something massively traumatic would lead me into depression. I imagine it would challenge the strength of my belief in God, more than anything else. If God is the absolute immovable centre that I believe him to be in my life then it is unlikely that I will ever suffer from full-blown depression. If I lose my faith in favour of myself then I will be opening Pandora’s Box. It’s all about The Centre.

          • An Anonymous Teen September 25, 2013 at 12:38 PM

            “My argument is that depression is caused by a self-centered mindset.”

            Hmmm. So according to that statement, the only reason people get depressed is because they’re self centered. I myself am depressed, but I guess that just means I’m self-centered. It CAN’T be because my brother horribly sexually abused me for a year, OR because I had to keep his secret from everyone for a quarter of my life, OR because he then proceeded to abuse my younger sister and step brother, AND I had to watch him get dragged out of the house screaming while I was at the age of 10.
            It probably ALSO has nothing to do with the fact that my parent’s are divorced, my dad is about to get another divorce from his now alcoholic wife, my mom is still single at the age of 35, or she has new boyfriends that I like, but they leave anyways.

            All by the age of 14.

            Do you understand the trauma that come with these things? All of this on top of the picking on at school for being short, nerdy, and un-athletic? AND I don’t know half of my real relatives because my father was adopted. Also, (and I swear if you judge me and say thay my depression is due to my beliefs, may whatever deity you believe in judge you justly) the judgement of others for my atheism. All of this and more and you have the nerve to tell me I’m depressed because I’M SELF CENTERED?
            I came here looking for help because I’ve been thinking about suicide alot for awhile now, and all you’ve done is make me feel even more guilty for even considering suicide. This type of opinion is the reason I’m scared to talk to people.
            I hope you read this and feel guilty for telling me to tough up and quit whining about myself for things I CAN’T CHANGE. You are the definition of ignorance. The next time you want to tell people to quit being depressed and “self-centered,” take into account how the things you say affect other people. YOU are the selfish one.

          • Tara N September 25, 2013 at 1:43 PM

            To An Anonymous Teen: I am so sorry you have struggled with this trauma and I hope that you can find some support as soon as possible. Your entire life is ahead of you and although it seems hopeless right now, I promise that there is hope. I don’t claim to know what course of action of support will help you live a full life, but don’t give up on fighting for it. There are options. Please remember you are not alone and you are not deserving of this pain due to selfishness. There is help out there regardless of what you just read!

            To Toma: If you actually do choose to address this young teen, please don’t let your ego do the talking. Please practice sensitivity and kindness no matter how hard that might be for you. PLEASE recognize that this person has been traumatized. This is not just some teen who is claiming to be depressed because she didn’t get a new car for her birthday. Do NOT invalidate this person’s feelings just because you have never experienced those feelings yourself. You haven’t been depressed because depression isn’t real to you. Well, it is real to this person and this person is suicidal right now. Be a responsible person and either don’t reply at all or reply with compassion.

          • Anon September 27, 2013 at 11:46 AM

            Anon. teen- you have had a lot to deal with at a young age. Do you have any trusted adults that will take you in? Talk to a school psychologist, or some sort of professional.
            I know that four years is a long time to someone your age, but you will be able to move out and things will get a little better.
            No matter what this article says, you are not selfish. You write very intelligently and should be “selfishly” proud of that. Please do not give up. There are people that care for you, even if they are strangers on the Internet.

          • Toma September 28, 2013 at 8:06 AM

            No doubt things beyond your mind can cause you to suffer, but your mind dictates exactly how much. We all know or have heard stories of people who overcome unimaginable suffering to find happiness in their lives. What’s the difference between them, and someone who doesn’t? In short, it’s perspective. They view themselves as being in control of their own happiness, and they choose to be positive. The past changes nothing about RIGHT NOW. This moment is all that matters; it is all that we can control.

            Being a teenager is so hard because you are stuck in that place between the innocence and thoughtless joy of childhood, and the corrupt, polluted mind that comes with adulthood. You start to have too many thoughts, and thoughts serve only to confuse us. Teach yourself to live in the moment, and free yourself from thinking too much. If you can learn to do it now in adolescence, it will last you the rest of your life.

            Find strength in your suffering, for that is it’s purpose. It’s not meant to break you, it’s meant to make you stronger. You could be (and maybe you are?) the strongest person you know.

  • Reply annonymous April 24, 2013 at 3:41 PM

    Beliefs like this are the very reason why people don’t get help. You’re not a doctor, just another entitled ass who thinks he knows it all. Its transparent, that you are the one who is selfish. You have no idea. Nobody wants to feel this way. I don’t like to feel this way and I can’t shut it off. You have no idea how hard I’ve tried all these years. How dare you write such crap. Selfish? Please. Nobody has ever called me selfish. You don’t know me.
    I feel like I’m wasting my time even bothering to write any of this. It doesn’t matter what I say. You are still going to think I’m some self pitying fool. Which is exactly why I don’t talk about these feelings.

    • Reply Toma April 24, 2013 at 3:59 PM

      You know, comments would be more meaningful if anybody actually argued the points I made in my post. All I’m getting is emotional reactions to being called selfish but no argument as to why I might be wrong.

      So I’ve gone in search of views similar to my own. It seems I am not the only one who holds this opinion:

      http://viewonbuddhism.org/depression.html

      Although this article supports my view, it does manage to offer suggestions as to how you can escape from your depression/selfishness, something which I failed to do successfully.

      • Reply Stan July 20, 2013 at 8:34 PM

        You are claiming that these mental health issues arrise from self- centeredness, but you make some huge assumptions that could not possibly be proven through scientific evidence and seem to be based more on your personal feelings. Saying that problems such as multiple-personality disorder, bi-polar disorder, depression, anxiety stem from a spiritual cause and not a scientific one directly conflicts the years of study done by individuals who seek an objective answer to these issues. Scientists and other individuals who are most likely significantly more educated on these matters than yourself and have dedicated there lives to helping those affected. As a psychologist I can tell you that disorders like Multiple personality and Bi-polar often affect people who have had no other mental health issues in there past. They are certainly not manifested in any way from negative thoughts. I cant imagine any mental health proffesional reading this and not being outraged and disturbed. What exactly do you feel you are accomplishing by providing these assumptions to the public many of which probably suffer from the aforementioned conditions. If possitive thought cured mental illness the mental health profession would not exist and you would be a millionare. On a more subjective note your articles and most of your replies simply reek of arrogance and hipocracy.

        • Reply Toma July 21, 2013 at 1:44 AM

          Most people who comment don’t tell me what they do professionally so I can’t know for sure if there are any mental health professionals who agree with my writings. However, if it isn’t already obvious to you, I lend only marginal credibility to people such as yourself when discussing the spiritual for reasons well summarised by your comment.

          Your oversimplification of everything that I have written is within itself arrogant. What you’ve basically said is that everything I have spent my time writing about is based on subjective feeling (as opposed to spiritual truth) and I ultimately believe people should just start ‘thinking positive’ and everything will be flowers and sunshine. Are you serious? Have you read anything else I have written?

          If you or I can not scientifically prove an inclination within all people towards self-centredness (an assumption, not a given) it means it does not exist? The same goes for our desire for Oneness? And our Duality? What you believe and what you are saying is that we are NOT spiritual beings, but material ones, and that if something can not be proven scientifically, which is to say materially, then it is not real. Materialists and secularists, Stan, are the problem with the world, and they are the cause of this explosion of ‘mental illness’ we see today.

          You seek to waste everybody’s time by addressing the impermanent. I prefer to spend my time focusing on the eternal. Inevitably the discourse about selfishness and depression will be forgotten, and the debate between us will end up being a philosophical one about the existence of God.

          • kc August 27, 2013 at 2:07 AM

            We don’t have to back our journey up. Each of us has a journey and you are not judge and jury. Since you wrote the article, you must prove, just like a scientist, that your “theory” is correct. These are spiritual points of view, which come from faith without proof.

          • Justin August 28, 2013 at 6:59 PM

            Well said kc. People can argue opinions about what causes depression and what depression really is forever. But the science can change at any point and spiritual points of faith won’t likely ever be proven. Everyone’s situation and beliefs vary. I suffer from depression as well, and I’m not offended my this article at all. I also don’t agree with it in the slightest bit, but it doesn’t offend me. However, no matter what you believe, being there for the one who is depressed is important. Abandoning them is the worst possible thing that can be done, even if you believe that they’re choosing to be this way, isolating them can never be better for them. I know this from experience. I once had a friend with severe depression, she came to me for comfort and I knew she had been suicidal, but I felt I couldn’t help her. So I made a clean break. I had felt I had made the right decision. I didn’t know how much that had hurt her. I saw her months later, we didn’t talk or anything (I deeply regret that now) but that week she hung herself. Whether she was choosing to feel that way, or something was seriously wrong inside, she’s gone now. Objectively it’s easy to say that what she did was selfish, and I hated her for it a long time, but depression in the severe stages has a way of kicking out all logic, to where you aren’t thinking about changing your perspective, you just want the pain to stop, you feel you’re hurting others and this is best for everyone. I’ve learned this with my own depression. And I do everything to see the light in the world, and I KNOW I will be happy again. But she will always be partly on my mind. So this is my advice to everyone with someone close who suffers from depression. No matter if you believe the article above, don’t just cast those who have it away, whether self-centered or not, they need support and love from their friends and family. DON’T ABANDON THEM! Because is just passing this thing off as nothing or not a big deal or not your problem, whatever it is, isn’t worth another’s life. People can believe whatever they want as long as they keep compassion.

          • Toma September 4, 2013 at 10:17 PM

            “depression in the severe stages has a way of kicking out all logic”

            This to me proves that the true nature of depression is spiritual. Name for me a realm in which science, mathematics and logic cease to be relevant.

          • Arby September 26, 2013 at 4:13 AM

            Politics – no doubt :)

        • Reply Arby July 21, 2013 at 2:10 AM

          I am a little confused by your post. For one, I don’t know why positive thinking/change in beliefs could not result in measurable changes to the brain, assuming it was effective for an individual and if we knew what biomedical markers map to a mental illness. Since we have no biomedical markers, and this is one reason the DSM 5 blew up in their faces (even the NIMH has now shifted their research funding away from it to start their own) that leaves your argument on shaky ground – which is my number two point.

          Where is the biological evidence for any mental illness? Isn’t the burden of proof on the medical/scientific community to produce the evidence since that is their claim. For depression treatment, the whole lack of serotonin meme has already been discounted by most of the profession and no one really knows how antidepressants work. Also they are often not cures in their own right yet rather maintenance therapies.

          In addition, I don’t see where Toma has to produce any evidence. He writes as if it is his conviction, yet he is not bound by the same rules of engagement the scientific community is. If he were, then we wouldn’t all have to produce scientific evidence for any of our beliefs?

          My last point and the one that is the most confusing to me, is about your take on the idea that the mental health profession would not exist if “positive thinking” could cure mental illness. There is a large part of the profession that exists exactly because re-framing your thinking helps individuals overcome or lessen impacts of certain mental illnesses such as GAD and depressions that are not melancholic. CBT, ACT, DBT, IBT are some of the more popular therapies that do this. I am having a hard time believing that a psychologist would take a stand against behavioral therapies this way. I understand the disagreements within the profession about which therapy is more effective yet I have never seen a professional willing to discard this entire branch of psychology.

        • Reply Nick July 21, 2013 at 2:29 AM

          I once interacted with a psychiatry patient who suffered from delusional disorder (or some variation thereof, I don’t remember the exact “DSM diagnosis”) who was obsessively worried that his landlord had somehow managed to take out a life insurance policy on him and was now plotting to kill him for the money. His “evidence” for this fear was that he remembered his landlord talking about life insurance policies one day for no apparent reason, and also, that he smelled something funny on his pillow once (which he was worried was some kind of poison).
          The thing is, this man seemed well aware that the chances of his fears being a reality were miniscule. But his response would be that this was his LIFE we were talking about, and that he couldn’t take any chances when it came to his LIFE. Yes, chances are the landlord wasn’t trying to kill him, but what if he was? Is it worth dying over? And sure, the smell on his pillow could have been anything, but what if it really was poison? This was his LIFE, and after all, all these things are technically within the theoretical realm of possibility, even if they are incredibly unlikely.
          The thing is, you can’t really argue with that. I mean, it is his LIFE we’re talking about, and if he decides that those things are worth worrying about, who is anyone else to tell him otherwise?
          If this isn’t an example of a spiritual problem, I don’t know what is. And though Toma was specifically referring to depression in his article, it seems that it is relevant in this case, as well. Is it possible that genetic or environmental factors made this patient more predisposed to this kind of thinking? I suppose it’s possible, maybe even probable. But at the end of the day, his problem was the excessive value that he placed on the “evidence” that he identified, which was just a manifestation of the excessive value he placed on his life as his “center,” or his ego, or his sense of “self,” or however you want to term it, in a similar way that Toma suggests can be a cause of depression.
          You could argue that the patient is a slave to his emotions and his impulses, and that he has no choice to act and behave and worry as he does. I think that would be a rather bleak outlook to take on the nature of human beings. And sure, you could give him medications to numb his pain; and this is what had been done for this patient for years. He decided he didn’t want to keep taking the antipsychotics and keep living in a “zombie-like state”, and can you blame him? Ultimately, I think, only a re-evaluation of what this person valued, which can only come from within himself, would be the only true “cure” for him.
          You claim that saying that mental disorders stem from a spiritual problem directly conflicts with years of study on the issue. I would honestly love to read any article you can find which clearly establishes the direct cause of symptoms of disorders like depression or anxiety disorders as being a “chemical imbalance” or some other biological model. I am not aware of any. The fact that there has never been anything even remotely close to a proven biological model for the “pathophysiology” of psychiatric illness isn’t just some wild claim; there are even plenty of practicing psychiatrists who readily admit this. The controversy over the DSM 5 manual in the United States is just another recent example which highlites the fact that psychiatry as it is currently practiced is a field in which symptoms are merely identified and then categorized (rather arbitrarily, I might add); but only the symptoms of most of these illnesses, and not their etiologies, can be treated, because no one actually knows what those etiologies are. Why is it any more ridiculous to propose that in some or even many of these cases the etiology may be a “spiritual” one rather than a so-called “biological” one?
          Finally, you said, “If positive thought cured mental illness the mental health profession would not exist…”
          You are greatly oversimplifying the arguments that were made in this statement. I would say that recognizing the part we individuals play in some of our own problems, and then acting to correct that, is infinitely more difficult than accepting the label of being “depressed” and then chugging down some pills in order to be “cured.”

          • Nick July 21, 2013 at 2:30 AM

            whoops, meant to post this on the other thread in reply to Stan. sorry!

      • Reply justin August 31, 2013 at 7:45 AM

        Like ive saidin two other post i focus on others spiritually and physicaly yet i suffer from depression and i wanna know where it comes in that im selfish im not raising my gun but more like ive caught you and im giving you achance to live no arguments but ideas. im 15 and try and live the greatest life got wants me to live so where does my depression/ selfishness/eeewy badness whoever you are and your word for it. where does mine come into play

      • Reply Person October 23, 2013 at 5:15 PM

        Nobody argues your points because your points are meaningless in comparison to the underlying fact that your article is yet another blow to the psyches of already psychologically destroyed people. None of your points matter because none of your points serve any purpose but to make the depressed feel even worse about themselves than they already do.

        Just in case you lack the empathy to understand this, here is the unempathetic and simplified version.

        Nobody gives a flying fuck what you think, because you clearly dont give a flying fuck about your audience.

        • Reply Natalie May 15, 2014 at 11:49 PM

          The fucks you’re looking for won’t be found here.

      • Reply Raddmiral May 13, 2014 at 7:32 AM

        Have you personally experienced depression? If not then you will understand why we are not arguing the “points” you’ve made as they would be irrelevant without actual experience.

    • Reply Achut June 11, 2013 at 7:35 AM

      Spot on!!!!

    • Reply Anthony July 2, 2013 at 10:05 AM

      Do you not prove his point by making this ” point of view/opinion” article relate to you and your life?

  • Reply m April 26, 2013 at 9:16 PM

    Today I asked my friend to walk home with me and my other friend said “No, she should walk home with me because I’m depressed and you’re not.” She got what she wanted.

    I know this is a small thing but it really bugged me, I thought she was being very selfish and using “depression” as a way of getting what she wanted, even though it was just a little thing.
    So I found this and I have to agree with you. Suffering comes from the absence of your desires. When someone is sick, they suffer because they are in pain and they want better health. It’s when the desires are things which we can live without such as materialistic things, that leads you to think it’s selfishness. I think it is selfishness but I wouldn’t go as far as saying it’s self inflicted although I think you can make it go away.

    You’ve probably heard of Maslow’s Hierachy of Needs, once you have everything from the bottom you move up. It is said that countries such as France and US are more depressed than poorer countries. I think this is because most people who are born into families who can support them, already get given the basic needs such as food, shelter, water and warmth and safety. The next one’s in the pyramid are love, self esteem and then self actualisation. These tend to be the things that depressed people say they do not have. It’s their desire for these things and failure to achieve it which makes them depressed. People spend their lives trying to fulfil themselves, which is because they already have the basics, and then love and self esteem, so they strive for self actualisation. They want to achieve more, they will obviously “need” other things (probably materialistic things) such as money, when really they want money so they can fulfil themselves in whatever way they have chosen.

    I can see that you’re not attacking people who are or say they are depressed (so people shouldn’t be taking it so personally), they just need to accept things and seek help so that they can see that they are in control of all of this and that they can improve the situation they’re in.

    Thank you for writing this.

    • Reply Toma April 27, 2013 at 4:33 PM

      Your reference to Maslow is an interesting one. I smell an article cooking.

      Even more interesting is your statement about suffering coming from the absence of desires. Swap the word desires with needs and I might just agree with you. Without needs life seems to lose it’s purpose. A life with needs yet free of desires is a good one.

  • Reply Gibran May 6, 2013 at 1:59 AM

    Just commented on a similar article and I have to agree on this one.

    The worst is children making their parents miserable or parents making their children miserable because of their “depression.”

    I’ve found(and I’m a Muslim so this is the way I see it) that doing what I was commanded is the way out. God promised me I would be tested-so every time I am tested I can say “this is what he promised and my patience and gratitude is being tested” and my faith increases. Also, I remember that there is constant pain and in the fire of hell and that this life is so short…..compared to how amazing Paradise is, my problems are trivial and will end soon.

    It’s articles like these that help me:http://www.iqrasense.com/muslim-character/a-muslim-believers-attitude-during-times-of-difficulties-and-calamities.html

    My beliefs by the permission of God, help me cope. I certainly abhor that any one else should suffer because of any suffering I am going through, mental or physical(although the brain is a physical thing.) Pushing my pain on others-now that is being selfish.

  • Reply Rob May 12, 2013 at 3:03 PM

    Let me tell you how I found this page: I’ve been going through a heavy depressive period of late and this morning when I first woke up I wrote in my journal (as I often do) over my feelings, dreams of the night, and for the first time in a while… a list of things I could do today such as going for a walk, cleaning the house, visiting a friend, etc… As I looked at each item I felt a bit of anxiety about doing what I wrote, but also the thought of, ‘I don’t feel like it. I don’t want to.’ Just like a four year old would do when faced with something he doesn’t want to do. It was then a little voice within said, ‘Gee, this depression is really selfish!’ And damnit, in my case it’s true! Rather than feeling the pain of stretching myself in a direction that would be helpful not only for the depression, but also helpful for others, I’m allowing the ego, the little ‘I’ to be in control. This is a decision, a choice. I could be of use but because of a fear or uncomfortableness I wish to avoid, I choose to stay in bed and sleep. I do believe, similar to Eckhart Tolle and other spiritual teachings that depression has its place so long as we use it and not the other way around. Sometimes this change around of who’s using who can take a long time, but it can also happen in an instant. Often it is the bone deep, sheer agony of depression that causes the true self to finally wake up and say.”Enough!” and break free of the identification with the little ‘I’ or ego allowing the recognition of our true connection with a higher source, or a holy love that I’ll call God for practical purposes. Once I realized how selfish depression is for me it was an easy jump to this website. My thoughts aren’t fully formed on this yet, as this Dark Night of the Soul period is a common theme that runs through most spiritual literature of every religion for thousands of years. The lesson however in each tradition is always the same … become empty, break the identification with the little ego who has until now created one’s whole world, and embrace in identity and truth, yourself as a spark of Divine Love with all the indescribable joy that comes with this state. In many cases this state is only made possible through Soul-wrenching hard work but ultimately is given as an act of grace when least expected. This can feel like a real death to the ego who can see no end in sight of the pain and has no real control over the situation. This is the whole purpose of course, making the ego impotent enough so the real self, Soul if you will, can shine through. Naturally this can be an excruciating painful period, hence the reason why most people don’t want to go through it and keep themselves in a cycle of ego identification of a known pain than surrendering to what appears for the ego to be a big, scary, unknown jump into a dark void. I know I’ve been guilty of this. This is especially true if someone is really strongly identified with the ‘I’ in all of its wily and manipulative ways. Of course, beating yourself up for being depressed is an act of the ego and not the work of Soul so it won’t help. Anyway, these are my off-the-cuff impressions for now.

  • Reply Jerome May 14, 2013 at 7:46 AM

    I hope you never experience depression or lose any loved ones to suicide if this is your stance. Maybe then you will understand.

    • Reply Claire May 20, 2013 at 6:48 AM

      Jerome you said exactly what I wanted to say. This article sends a potentially dangerous message. As someone who has battled depression my whole life (and I mean BATTLED) and recently lost a family member to suicide, one of the worst things the sufferer goes through is the feelings of GUILT. Does the author think that people choose to suffer from depression? I actually DO wish he could experience depression, just for one day, and then write a follow up article.

  • Reply Lucy May 15, 2013 at 8:09 AM

    Wow. You’re a fucking moron!!! Depression is real. Sounds to me like it’s YOU who’s selfish. Getting annoyed at others for feeling down. Implying that “it’s all about them.” You piece of shit. For someone who’s really depressed, this could set them over the edge.

    Are you a doctor????? I wouldn’t be making statements like you did without a medical background. You narcissistic idiot.

    • Reply Toma May 15, 2013 at 10:29 AM

      Lucy you’re actually quite correct. I am selfish, and that’s my point. We’re all selfish. It is our selfishness that causes us to be unhappy. Our egos cause our suffering. The stronger the ego the stronger the suffering. This has very little to do with God or religion. God and religion are but one way to remove our ego and subsequently find contentment. There are many other ways, and all of them involve deflating the ego.

      • Reply Achut June 11, 2013 at 7:18 AM

        Then why single out depressed people… Everyone is selfish, should have written an article about that. I think this is actually dicrimination, that you are bashing on depressed people. I agree with Lucy for someone who is depressed this article could be a trigger for them to feel worse and just do a lot of self-blaming and with depessed people you have train their minds for years to start evaluating things from a realistic perspective and not negatively.

      • Reply Andrew September 20, 2013 at 3:31 AM

        This is pretty absurd. I’m afraid that bad philosophy isn’t really an answer to an empirically studied mental disorder. You do realize depression isn’t simply a state of mind? The makeup of the brain is physically altered in depressed individuals. Seratonin is lacking. Do you not comprehend the physiological reasoning behind depression medications? You can’t simply tell yourself to increase seratonin, among the slew of other physiological factors involved with depression.

        I’m afraid you’re really just a profoundly pretentious person. The statements you’ve made in the comments and the article do not combat a mental illness- they blame and contribute. Even if depression were as simple as “selfishness”, what do you hope to accomplish by pointing it out like this?

        I will state my belief in the power of cognitively re-evaluating ones life. Yes, things like ACT therapy can change the brain and increase seratonin. Exercise, music, etc. Lots of solutions. It’s kind of a bitter cycle though because depression creates a crippling hopelessness that drains motivation. That’s hardly selfish.

        To an extent, a focus on the self does further one’s state of sadness. But it’s not simply a matter of “Hmm, today I think I’m going to go read some asshole’s blog and force seratonin into my brain.” It’s a severely complicated and unfortunate disorder. I thoroughly hope people like you don’t actually reach anywhere. The denial of psychological studies is terrifying… particularly in favor of bullshit religion and philosophy. Experience should come before faith in matters of physiological illness. Depression can be medicated, treated with therapy, eased… casting false blame is not one of those treatments.

    • Reply Lily March 24, 2015 at 3:28 AM

      That is my concern as well, that somebody suffering from severe depression could read this poisonous garbage and be pushed over the edge because of it, due to the fact that people who are in an advanced state of depression experience distortion of thoughts in the form of unwarranted, disproportionate feelings and a sense of worthlessness.

      What also concerns me is that sometimes, when people go about ranting like this on a topic which they know nothing about, with a total lack of compassion and empathic wisdom, well, sometimes God has to bring them to their senses in the only way that will get through to them – by allowing something to happen in their own lives to teach them the error of their ways and the destructiveness of their arrogance. The irony of one of the most arrogant and egotistical people I have encountered online in quite some time lecturing others about ego and selfishness is mind-boggling.

      • Reply Natalie March 26, 2015 at 12:20 AM

        Can someone rationally explain to me what is arrogant and egotistical about this article?

  • Reply Lucy May 15, 2013 at 8:13 AM

    Also, just to let you know, I suffer from extreme depression. I NEVER, ever tell anyone about it or bring anyone else down around me. I keep it to myself. I don’t have an actual reason for being depressed, I just feel bad inside. Worse in winter (heard of seasonal disorder). So if depression isn’t real, how can seasonal disorder exist?????? And how is depression selfish when MANY people keep it to themselves. A lot of those people will end up suiciding as they feel alone and no one understands. As a Christian, shouldn’t you have some COMPASSION toward your fellow man???

    Crazy religious people

    • Reply Lily March 23, 2015 at 5:18 PM

      As a Christian, I can tell you that this guy and his opinions are not coming from a place of Godly wisdom.

      • Reply Natalie March 23, 2015 at 6:14 PM

        I suppose you believe that being Christian makes you the last authority on what is and isn’t Godly?

        • Reply Lily March 24, 2015 at 3:12 AM

          It doesn’t even take a Christian to see clearly that there is nothing Christlike about this guy’s attitude.

          • Natalie March 26, 2015 at 12:15 AM

            I suppose I could be clueless or Satan herself, but Christ does not condemn. In my point of view, comments like yours are more condemning than any Toma has made in this article.

  • Reply Ryan May 16, 2013 at 12:12 AM

    Toma,

    I agree with your blog post in many ways. I believe that selfish thoughts cause us to be unhappy, as in my instance my therapist has said that I need to start externally being selfish (I was bullied throughout middle school) in my interactions with people instead of being submissive and pushing those thoughts internally, but I think you’re trivializing just how easy it is to turn around those negative thoughts.
    For me, I lose the “depression” when I feel like a large number of people actually care about me, but once that feeling goes away (or a situation arises that is similar to the middle school bullying) the negative thoughts come back and cause me to internally regress into that same state of mind. It’s easy to say that I need to be in situations where I would feel important to other people to be able to think positively about my social life, but if it were that easy to implement in real life given my background, well then I wouldn’t be sitting here responding to your blog. I would probably be off with friends going to the bar or watching a movie with a girlfriend. It’s not as easy as thinking positively about your situation, just like it’s not as easy to get over a fear of heights without actually confronting your fear.

    I would welcome a response to see your point of view on my situation, as I think you offer a lot of insight on this issue.

    • Reply Toma May 16, 2013 at 8:55 AM

      Thanks for your comment Ryan.

      To understand my forthcoming advice, it’s essential that you first read and understand my post on The Centre. Here’s the link:

      Explaining God, selflessness and the human ego. The Centre.

      What is bullying if it is not the bully trying to strengthen his or her own centre? If they can beat up on you they feel greater than you, which is to say they feel more the centre than you are, or more Godly than you are. It also has the opposite effect on you, which is to say that your sense of centre shrinks and you feel worthless. This is all tied to the ego. Your centre matters to you and you feel damaged. Selfishness as I’ve used it in the post is but another word for the importance of our own ego.

      You need to work on your understanding of your own centre. If you do this your problem will cease to exist, I promise. I believe there are three distinct ways that this can be done.

      1. You can take the new age, very American approach of self-empowerment, which is what your therapist is telling you to do. Imagine if you will the voice of Tony Robbins telling you to “Set some goals, get out there and achieve them. You can do it!”. Such approaches serve to strengthen your own centre through achievement and self-confidence, but they are extremely dangerous because strengthening your own centre strengthens your ego. Yes, you will resolve your current problem by feeling like the king of the world, but with ego comes a host of other issues and an inevitable unhappiness over the long-term. What we need to do is remove the ego. Selfishness is the quickest, most powerful path to unhappiness. Take this path and you will wish you hadn’t.

      2. Find a centre greater than your own, such that your own centre ceases to matter. You will no longer need the validation you feel when others make you feel good, because what matters more than you is that in which you believe. This is my chosen path, hence my firm belief in God, but God is not the only way. As I mention in this post, you can help people, or have a child that depends on you etc etc. The idea here is to be selfless, so much so that your centre ceases to be paramount to your thinking.

      3. You can completely obliterate the centre. What this means is a complete removal of the ego, such that you are One with everything. In this state a chair holds as much importance in the world as you do. You become but another thing in this world, with no ego that needs feeding. This is pure Zen practice, and can only be achieved through the deepest of meditation and countless awakenings. This is the state that the Buddha supposedly achieved. I recommend finding a Zen centre for this one. Zen is great because it’s not a religion, but a new perspective.

      The thing with therapists, Ryan, is that they deal with the mind, which is an excessively complex thing. They use complexity to deal with complexity, and telling you to be externally selfish may have scientific logic to it, but it is literally the exact opposite of what you should be doing. I’d get rid of him or her now. Try and address your spirit. It’s a far simpler thing to deal with than your mind.

  • Reply Daniel May 17, 2013 at 3:31 AM

    “…caused by negative thoughts and not the other way around.”

    And I’m sure you can back this up with hard evidence.
    Or are totally unfounded statements the Zen way?
    For someone who dismisses psychiatry as pseudoscience, you sure are quick to make sweeping, vague diagnoses of your own.

  • Reply sippintea May 19, 2013 at 4:09 PM

    Okay, so if this is your view, then how do you escape the selfish negative thoughts?

    • Reply Toma May 19, 2013 at 5:03 PM

      Your question comes with great timing, as this weekend I’ve been having a few of my own. Over the years I’ve learned (and am still learning) to recognise them when they happen, which to me is the most important part because we learn self-awareness, and we don’t give them time to take hold of us and spiral.

      Once recognised I do something positive & productive to empty my mind. Working harder. Spending more time with my family. Blogging. Meditating. Exercising. Praying more. All of the aforementioned are positive experiences which leave a contribution to the world (although many would argue whether my blogging qualifies).

      I recognise negative feelings as an alarm telling me it’s time to work on myself spiritually. I don’t eradicate the thoughts in an instant, but I do chip away at them. The whole process makes me stronger and more humble, and the next time this happens, probably in a few months, I will be stronger than this time, IF I am spiritually sharp enough to recognise them when they occur.

  • Reply You have got to be kidding me - Empty Closets - A safe online community for gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender people coming out May 23, 2013 at 2:15 AM

    […] have got to be kidding me You're not depressed. You're selfish. – TomaHaiku I can't believe people actually think this. It kinda reminds me of an Einstein quote "Two […]

  • Reply Moga May 27, 2013 at 8:32 PM

    Depression results in fatigue. It can interfere with their daily lives, and even kill them. To say that it is “all in their head” is a typical, ignorant response from somebody who has never dealt with the condition or somebody else who has it. Just because depression isn’t visible like a broken leg, doesn’t mean it isn’t there.

    • Reply Toma May 27, 2013 at 8:37 PM

      A very presumptuous statement. Nonetheless, if it necessarily exists outside of the mind, show it to me.

      • Reply Connor June 16, 2013 at 7:21 AM

        People who are depressed exhibit very substantial physical degrading. Exampli Gratia: fatigue, increased sickness, physical weakness, heart conditions, et cetera. Sir, if you have not had depression, and have not studied the human mind to a very deep extent, then I fear you have no authority to dismiss hundreds of years of research. The human brain is no simple thing, concordantly there are no simple answers. The biggest problem here is you have confused depression with narcissism. I personally attempted to hang myself a year ago, and have been battling depression since. I can still be happy, but only for a brief time, and the correlation is not between where my centre of thought is and my mood. Having conversed with others in my condition – on top of a few narcissists as well, I can tell you your statement is false. You believe you can call another presumptuous, yet you just insulted everyone who chances upon your page that has had a suicidal family member or friend. I do not appreciate the way you insulted myself, either. I have done volunteer work, built bikes for others in shops for free, am a Christian, and am doing nuclear fusion research with the goal of benefiting all of humanity. It has not helped; I still see life through a dark film, for such long and chronic periods of time that I begin to doubt if happiness exists, if my mind is focused on myself or others. A friend of mine has devoted his entire life to all those around him, he never goes first, he helps others with problems, and is an amazing friend, yet he is plagued with depression. There are too few sources in your article, too much evidence against it, and you sir are too egotistical [O irony.] to admit you may be incorrect.

        • Reply Toma June 16, 2013 at 7:42 AM

          Hi Connor,

          I believe I have addressed most of your points in previous comments. I will say this: Selfishness (or self-centredness) are little more than the mind being trapped within itself, such that it is blinded to the truth and the purity of one’s surroundings. By using your mind you have created a filter through which you see the world, and in your case you claim that filter is dark. You need to remove the filter.

        • Reply Nick June 16, 2013 at 8:27 PM

          “Hundreds of years of research” – that’s a good one. What research are you referring to? Because there is no research that I am aware of that establishes any cause of depression (or any other mental illness, for that matter).
          This blog post does not invalidate or call into question the suffering of people with mental illness, as many commenters seem to think. The symptoms are real – but that is all they are, symptoms. And most of the currently practiced models of psychiatry deal only with that- they identify clusters symptoms, label those symptoms as a “disease,” and then attempt to treat that “disease” when all they are doing is treating symptoms. This post attempts to identify the true cause of mental illness, something psychiatry has repeatedly failed to do, so that sufferers can begin to treat the source of their suffering, rather than simply treat the symptoms.
          And this is nothing new, nor is it a perspective that is shared by only one or two people (though it is in the minority). In the United States, the American Psychiatric Association has released its DSM 5, the latest in its line of books outlining their criteria for the diagnosis of mental disease, to very mixed reviews. The controversy with the DSM highlights the complete subjectivity with which mental disorders are “defined,” highlights the fact that “mental disorders” are merely identified clusters of symptoms rather than diseases in the true sense of the word, and highlights the fact that the entire field of psychiatry is, by far, the least scientific area in the field of medicine.

  • Reply Tamika May 31, 2013 at 7:39 PM

    Dear Toma,

    While I may respect that this is your opinion and you have a right to share it, I am in utter disbelief on how you’ve expressed it so bluntly with very little background knowledge on the subject. I wouldn’t mind so much if you weren’t hurting people in the process.

    I have experienced depression first-hand and been a very successful psychologist for many, many years. I have also looked into psychiatry and medical sciences. The depression that I experienced wasn’t initially caused by “selfishness” but in fact it was caused by anxiety. I have been diagnosed with Generalized Anxiety Disorder and in contrary to your beliefs, one of those things that bothered me so deeply was the unhappiness of my mother; among many things. I never sunk down in “self pity” but merely didn’t want to get out of bed in the morning. I was just so tired and worn from worrying all the time. It became a lot more difficult for me when I dealt with people like you who blamed the illness of me; when in fact I was suffering from a biological illness. See, the anxiety used up my serotonin which is responsible for feeling “good”. It’s a very chemical-based process, not simply “negativity”. We live in a very stress-driven society and anxiety is one of the primary causes of depression. Now we’re both educated people so would you please tell me how you still consider this post accurate when the majority of comments disagree with you, most of whom have experienced depression first-hand and definitely have more knowledge than you on the subject. I consider you a very, very arrogant individual and I hope you reconsider your ignorant views on this subject.

    • Reply Toma May 31, 2013 at 8:25 PM

      I can tell from your tone that you are a very sincere person, Tamika, and I thank you for sharing.

      What really bothers me about all of this, and it is my own fault, is that you all seem to have the impression that I consider myself above you, and above all of this. No! I am right in there with you. I suffer from the same issues as everybody else. The real difference between us is my willingness to accept my own mind as the cause of my problems, and my learned attempts to free myself of it.

      We fear so strongly that by freeing ourselves of our ego we will lose our identity and our sense of self. In reality it is in those exact moments that we find our true selves. Many commenters have understandably said they wish I could experience depression to understand it. I wish whole-heartedly that all of you will experience one moment in which you are truly free of your ego, primarily for your own happiness, but also that you may understand the true meaning of this post.

  • Reply Jason James June 1, 2013 at 11:56 PM

    You know it is proven that people who suffer from depression are likely to be more selfless than people who aren’t depressed? It has to do with low self-esteem or something of the sort.

  • Reply Haden Modisett June 6, 2013 at 2:37 AM

    Dear Toma,

    I completely agree with you. Depression IS selfish because of the reasons you say amongst other reasons too. If its any explanation, I’m Buddhist so my reasons focus on what depressed people are not doing, not what they are. I focus on the fact that depressed people create a wall around them that prevents them from interacting with others. This wall prevents them from seeing the ultimate reality: life is suffering. They think their suffering is “special” or that they suffer more than others, but I’d go as far to say that everyone suffers and usually its a more or less equitable amount. Now…this may seem like I’m ignoring those in poverty-stricken countries, but in fact I’m not. People who are put through such trials tend to not be depressed and usually quite content. Now when you talk about well-off people, you must understand that the suffering is still the same, its just from themselves or mostly in the mind. Now to explain this you must understand that I believe desire IS the cause of suffering. This may not make sense, but desire, and suffering by extension, can bring good change as well and desire only ends through a moderate lifestyle. Focusing on the ones around you and making sure that you don’t focus on your self is the way to reach a state of “No-Self.” To put it in a non-theological term, you reach a state of selflessness. If focusing on others and not focusing on yourself is selflessness, then we can safely assume that to focus on yourself and to be depressed is the opposite: selfishness.

    Now all of these beliefs I’ve expressed here are not easy for me to truly accept, as I get depressed quite often. However, that is why I follow these beliefs in the first place. By acknowledging my depression, acknowledging my attachment, my aversion, my ignorance, and my overall selfishness I am trying to take that first step towards getting rid of my overall depression, or at least to have a thing I can look back to for inspiration. However telling people that depression is selfish is quite blunt and its not that you should say it kindly or wrap it in a blanket of white lies or anything, its just that telling people to inhibit or to feel an emotion almost never works. Spreading knowledge does perhaps and that is what you are doing too, but recognize that many times people who are depressed find it hard to get rid of depression. The main solution one can give is including them in the community or helping them be included because that takes the focus off of them. Technically you are trying to show them that they are being selfish, but they aren’t just seeing words on paper…erm I mean a screen. I do appreciate you posting this though.

    Overall, I just want to say that you are right; negative thoughts are the cause of depression, not the other way around. However, I also want to say first-hand that it is NOT easy to get rid of depression just by acknowledging its existence within you. Personally that since depression is caused by aversion, ignorance, and attachment, that one should strive to get rid of all of them. Ignorance can be eliminated by constant reminders, staying connected to the community around you, and keeping your knowledge flowing and your ideals clear, although its not always that simple. Aversion can be eliminated by accepting that which you don’t want to accept and not focusing on appeasing purely your own interests. Lastly, attachment can be eliminated by attempting to put community and the intangible highly than material objects. You can use material objects all you want, but don’t depend on them, don’t worship them, and don’t think their obtainment is the sole purpose in life. I’m probably going off on a tangent, but I just wanted to get this out there and see what your response is too it. Thanks for article!

    Your reader,
    Haden Modisett

    • Reply Haden Modisett June 6, 2013 at 2:41 AM

      EDIT: I also would like to say that I do actively tell people of my depression, if it comes up or if I have recently suffered from it. I think people need to tell people of their depression because it hurts people more if you don’t then if you do. Actually people didn’t make such a big deal out of it and that’s something I really appreciated and something which pushed the idea further about the trivial state of my depression: it’s all in the mind; it’s nothing tangible.

      • Reply Toma June 6, 2013 at 10:48 AM

        Thank you for your support, Haden. Obviously I have taken a bit of a beatdown for this post, so it’s nice that somebody agrees with me in principle, if not with my expression.

        I would like to address one point though. Poor people suffer as rich people suffer. Suffering is suffering, and like a virus it does not discriminate. The difference I was trying to express was the frequency with which they suffer. The moderate lifestyle you speak of seems paradoxical. You would think that poor people – who have much, much less – would desire more, and therefore suffer more. Funny that it’s actually the opposite.

        Choosing the right path does not resolve our problems. We first need to walk it, and tire ourselves, and then we get to where we’re going. I applaud you for having chosen the right path. Walk it mindfully, and with great patience.

        • Reply Haden Modisett June 7, 2013 at 7:15 AM

          Oh absolutely, I agree with your reply. I didn’t mean to say poor people suffered differently than rich people because suffering IS suffering, especially when its mental. The moderate lifestyle I speak about is living a life in which you do fulfil some of your desires, but you don’t live too lavishly. You aren’t an ascetic, but you also don’t live a life whether you try to ignore suffering by feeding your every desire, because in the end desire will never be satisfied and building walls around yourself only makes you desire more. As Siddhartha Gautama once heard a music teacher say, “If the string is too tight, it will break. If the string is too loose, it will not play.” Lastly, I’d like to thank you for your blessings, peace be upon you as well.

    • Reply Grant June 26, 2013 at 4:29 AM

      ” They think their suffering is “special” or that they suffer more than others”. Okay, here’s the thing about that: with almost every scene I observe, my mind tells me “that person is going through so much worse than me, what right do I have to not be suffering as much? I am ashamed, and should feel incredibly guilty.” The suffering of others (often imagined by me) feeds my feelings of guilt and shame and undeserving-ness.

    • Reply SEROTONIN March 19, 2015 at 7:47 PM

      Hypocrite much?

      Oscar Wilde — ‘Selfishness is not living as one wishes to live, it is asking others to live as one wishes to live.’

      • Reply SEROTONIN March 19, 2015 at 7:51 PM

        EDIT:

        The previous comment of mines is directed towards Haden Modisett.

        Hypocrite much, aren’t we Haden?

        Oscar Wilde — ‘Selfishness is not living as one wishes to live, it is asking others to live as one wishes to live.’

        Don’t try to neutralize suffering people down with this “No Self” dogma.

  • Reply MaryAn June 6, 2013 at 7:43 PM

    Im 30. I came out of a long term relationship two years ago. Ive struggled to find a new man, and as the past two years have gone on, all my friends around me have got married and are now starting families.
    I’ve also put on weight.
    Bla bla bla…yes yes poor me.
    Just giving you a background…

    Toma, if you knew me, you would realise that i have always been the tpye of person to never allow anything to get the better of me. Yes, things have really got me down in the past, exams, family issues, struggling with weight, my brother battling with Crohns all his life. But I feel like Ive always had a great way of dealing with it. Its like you said earlier in your posts:

    “Once recognised I do something positive & productive to empty my mind. Working harder. Spending more time with my family. Blogging. Meditating. Exercising. Praying more. All of the aforementioned are positive experiences which leave a contribution to the world (although many would argue whether my blogging qualifies). ”

    I have always done that. It always worked. Yes, it does work.
    And would always have recommended that.
    As you are doing.

    However. What I have been feeling in the last year doesnt compare. Its different. I would never have understood it (i think) if I hadnt experienced it.
    I havent been diagnosed, but am almost certain I have depression.
    What got me onto this site was my search for ‘what to do’ yet again. I simply havent got the courage or strength or confidence to go to a doctor. About mental health?!! How embarrassing. However, its been getting very bad recently – Im very close to doing something about it. (When I say bad – feeling no way out of this mental torture and wanting out – in some way)
    And the reason Im writing this Toma (and i would genuinely love to hear what you would suggest) is that i have done all the above suggestions within the last year (Working harder. Spending more time with my family. Blogging. Meditating. Exercising. Praying more) I even went through a phase of Buddhist meditation BUT none of them work anymore.
    Toma. Its scary. Frightening.
    Its almost like something has a hold on me. I feel like a deserted train that cant move on its tracks.
    Everything is moving around me and I cant.
    Now, believe me i have tried. I have. Iv put myself out there. I am so outgoing and sociable. I have tried tried tried. But i am alone right now and the lonliness is so overwhelming and worrying that it has started to chip away at my happiness, it really has. I know my friends arent as interested in me when they see me, cos Ive nothing going on in my life to talk about. I feel my family look at me in pity.

    Yes its all me me me i i i.
    I know.

    But I have to say that depression, in my opinion, is not a negative emotion that needs to be replaced.
    It really isnt.
    I feel like I have plunged into a darkness in my own mind now, that nothign can help.

    Nothing.
    And that is my conclusion.
    Depression = hoplessness.
    Think about that word.
    Hope – less.
    Imagine not seeing any hope or light.
    All of the amazing brilliant things in life dont really matter.
    Everything is overshadowed.

    Toma. There comes a point in feeling ‘down’ or ‘negative’ where the things that once helped yourself cheer up…….dont work anymore.
    Because all mental strength is zapped.
    That. Is Depression.

    • Reply Jane August 15, 2013 at 9:18 AM

      Oh, MaryAn. I am so sorry for what you are going through. I’ve had a very similar experience to yours, and have never known until now that such darkness could exist.

    • Reply Lewis November 11, 2013 at 5:56 PM

      Hi, maryan i know what your going through and its normal. My dad 3 years ago got divorced from my mom 23 years down the drain and let me tell you he wAs devastated. He felt “depressed” everything was dark in his life but he decided to take it day by day. He dint let a bad situation dictate the rest of his life and now he met another person and i have never seen him so happy. The brain is just doing its job by telling us this situation sucks! You will find someone better then your ex raise a wonderful family and live a happy fullfiling life. Fix the things thAt are bothering you keep doing what your doing and like my dad, 1 day at a time. Wish you the best.

  • Reply Philip June 7, 2013 at 1:32 AM

    This being human is a guest
    house. Every morning
    a new arrival.

    A joy, a depression, a meanness,
    some momentary awareness comes
    as an unexpected visitor.

    Welcome and attend them all:
    Even if they are a crowd of sorrows,
    who violently sweep your house
    empty of its furniture, still,
    treat each guest honorably.
    HE may be clearing you out
    For some new delight.

    — Jalal ad-Din Rumi, Persian poet and mystic

    Hi Toma,
    I can see the point that you are trying to make about the ego (who as humans we identify as the real ‘Me’) needing to be let go of in order to transcend depression and come to a place of real peace… both with ourselves and with God. The irony is is that often the only way to this break this identification with the ego is through the trials of fire and water or the Dark Night of the Soul as St. John of the Cross called it and wrote so beautifully about. This may outwardly appear as a long and deep depression when the greater truth is that it is a time of cleaning out and true healing, when all what we think we are is turned on its head, and we are made empty so that He can take His rightful place in our hearts and minds. For the ego it can feel like death and insomuch that we are identified with the ego we may feel that we are dying too. We aren’t, but as the Sufis say, “Die before you die.” Which is this process of breaking off of the identification with the ego before we physically die. Soul a happy being, and also the real you and me, exists because God loves It. If we were to truly know this throughout our whole being how different our lives would be! So as scary and horrid and painful depression can be to our mind and senses, it can also be a sacred doorway to a new beingness. Rather than resist depression, or on the other extreme… indulge in it, we can invite it in and see what it is trying to say.

    • Reply Toma June 7, 2013 at 7:06 AM

      Beautiful! Simply beautiful. A lovely thing to wake up to.

      I fear for those who lack a belief in something greater than themselves. That is true hopelessness.

    • Reply Kimberly June 7, 2013 at 2:36 PM

      Wow. I was driving home from work a couple of months ago. I was thinking about how I now have so little materially, financially…In that moment it hit me…I have nothing..that translated to me as i have everything..nothing to weigh me down, no “thing” to be attached to.. I’m free, not enslaved. Certainly finances afford a person with freedom, but we also identify ourselves though with what we have as opposed to who and what we are. When we have nothing, or little, we are free to be ourselves. Embracing our circumstances (depression) allows us the opportunity to grow, and to see the divine in the midst of our suffering. I’m grateful for finding this site. I appreciate your comment. This way of thinking forces us to either slip into defensiveness, or brutal honesty, the latter allows for real spiritual growth, and that is not for sissy’s. I would also like to mention that I appreciate that Toma is allowing people the freedom to speak their minds, their truth..at the expense of his own ego. That’s pretty grown up.

  • Reply Kimberly June 7, 2013 at 4:37 AM

    I am impressed. Impressed with your summation of depression and the comments from others. I have had depression for years. I no longer take medication for it, sometimes I think i should…but the truth is that my inner dialogue its vital to my mental health. I have survived some pretty amazing things, I have found myself having to start my life all over again at the age of 46…it really sucks. Bone cancer sucks. Somehow God saw fit for me to survive that and its been a rough 11 years. Somehow, understanding that what you focus on focuses on you teaches a person to take every thought captive, instead of letting the thought capture you. I agree with you Toma. Depression can be debilitating. No question. Its important though to not close our minds and hearts to the possibility that we may be at least participating in our own suffering. Instead of becoming offended, consider your role. If you’re going to a therapist, thought modification will be expected of and from you. Try to not identify your identity with labels, you’re so much more than a diagnosis.

    • Reply Toma June 7, 2013 at 7:13 AM

      Your comment about labels has kind of blown my mind. Labels are for the material, which is to say the mind and body. The spirit can not be labeled.

      You’re an inspiration Kimberly. Thank you for sharing a snippet of your strength with other sufferers.

  • Reply Mimi June 9, 2013 at 9:58 AM

    I was pretty blue when I was frequenting the web for articles about depression. I was recently diagnosed with clinical depression and it was hard to get out of it for a while. Upon reading your blog post, I found myself no longer dwelling on my negativity. I don’t know if it was how you wrote it or just the principle alone, but it definitely helped me whiz through my readings like it was nothing. Thanks a lot for that, I really appreciate you getting me out of that state, whether you intended it or not.

    • Reply Toma June 9, 2013 at 10:45 AM

      Mimi you are more enlightened than you give yourself credit for. Thank you for making my day.

      • Reply SEROTONIN March 19, 2015 at 6:57 PM

        DON’T TREAD ON ME, TOMA.

        I can smell Toma’s fear all the way through this internet connection. Toma is hiding something behind that shell of philosophical ignorance and crass, self-righteous arrogance. Sniff-sniff! I see you.

        I feel that Toma’s point of arrogance in this article is out of ignorance. Furthermore, I also feel that Toma is basically saying…

        …”I feel that you are depressed because you focus on YOURSELF more that you focus on ME and MY philosophical beliefs. So I, TOMA, feel that I should post this article for any depressed person to read, and in MY article, I’ll get them to believe that they are selfish and therefore wrong for not believing some of the things that I, TOMA, believes. People with depression are selfish for not thinking the way I, THE ALL-KNOWING TOMA, thinks! How dare you ask for help to treat your depression. I know your depression is all in your head! Suck it up and think like ME, THE ALMIGHTY TOMA. I could give an iota of a f8===>(0)k how you feel.”

        As for Toma, I’d like to give you a piece of my mind if you don’t mind.

        Judging from your article, I can conclude that hypocrisy, self-righteousness, TOMAishness [sic], arrogance, ignorance, and possibly psychopathy is “all in your head.” as well.

        If you plan on posting an article that could possibly HARM a person suffering from Clinical Depression to the point of suicide, then don’t expect nice replies to this article.

        This article was all in your head. It wasn’t real. This article was never actually helpful for people with depression. You were just being a selfish d8===>k to people with AND without depression. And if you, Toma, refuse to admit that in writing and publishing this Male Bovine Cleveland Steamer of an article, you were simply being a selfish d8===>k, then you still are.

        This article is all in your head. The cure for this article is the prompt deletion of it.

        If by some act of God that you finally understand the true repercussions of how your article is affecting OTHERS, then I would apologize for being rude in this comment, However, just as depression is supposedly “All in your head.” and imaginary, YOUR article and MY comment must be “All in your head.” and imaginary as well.

        Here is a quote that may help anyone struggling from accusations of being “Selfish”.

        Selfishness is not living as one wishes to live, it is asking others to live as one wishes to live. And unselfishness is letting other people’s lives alone, not interfering with them. Selfishness always aims at creating around it an absolute uniformity of type. Unselfishness recognizes infinite variety of type as a delightful thing, accepts it, acquiesces in it, enjoys it. It is not selfish to think for oneself. A man who does not think for himself does not think at all. It is grossly selfish to require of one’s neighbor that he should think in the same way, and hold the same opinions. Why should he? If he can think, he will probably think differently. If he cannot think, it is monstrous to require thought of any kind from him. A red rose is not selfish because it wants to be a red rose. It would be horribly selfish if it wanted all the other flowers in the garden to be both red and roses.”

        ― Oscar Wilde, The Soul of Man and Prison Writings

        I hope that anyone hurt by this article, knows that they are loved, and that they deserve MUCH better than what this article says they do.

        Sincerely,

        Serotonin

        P.S. DON’T TREAD ON ME, TOMA.

  • Reply Achut June 10, 2013 at 3:45 AM

    Toma I congratulate you for discovering the great milestone that people have been overlooking for thousands of years. In fact why don’t you open your own center and let these people ‘snap out of it’…. I highly doubt that

    I will always view people like as naive and ignorant. With all my respect to your views but they are very WRONG.

    1- I am sick of people claiming the eastern world is not depressed… Do you have any evidence for that. the main reason people don’t know about their cases is the lack of research and acknowledgement of those so called ‘happy people’ believe me i ‘ve lived there… e.g a father might go to work everyday to feed his family while his psychological being is at stake, meaning he will spent hours worrying, crying, thinking he is a failure or life is not fair. Although he puts his family first he is still depressed.

    2- selfish is a harsh word to tell someone who sufferers from clinical depression. Just because they think about themselves about 80% of the time does not mean that they don’t think about other people.

    3- Your article is quite invalidating and disrespectful… saying that someone has everything is just ridiculous because depression is not about acquiring possessions. They are many causes of clinical depression you can’t just think that normal life stressors are the cause. People with past trauma, abuse, rape victims, bullying, those people witnessed horrifying stuff in the past and they can’t get them out of their minds so it’s not in their head. it’s just that they can’t cope with normal life problems that makes people think… oh ‘what the hell’.

    4- Negative thoughts are influenced by past experiences. Negative thoughts may sound silly when written or said out loud, but they are very real to the person. for example; a teenager isolating himself/herself because they believe no body likes them, nothing good ever happens to me, why am i always victimized. If you dig deep into these thoughts you will find the root of them. I don’t think anyone who ever recovered from depression; said ‘wow what was all that crap about. They studied these thoughts daily and know exactly why they think like that

    5- You didn’t mention anything about suicide… Yes it’s part of depression. Many people killed themselves because they can’t cope with their life anymore.

    I guess there is two things that you can do when if you know someone with depression either blame them or understand them.

  • Reply Tyrone June 13, 2013 at 12:30 PM

    Toma, I agree with you 100%. When 19 (now 36) I attempted suicide. It came after a school term of rejection finding myself in a place where I had not learned to operate in society. I later learned that most of my rejection was ‘perceived’ rejection. I was looking for, and hypersensitive to, ‘evidence of rejection’. I always looked at the negative reasons as to why I was being rejected. I soon took ‘their side’ against myself and thought on their behalf against myself. After all, I wanted to agree with the world, even to my ow detriment. I later learned in life that I had my head up my p-aas-t. Get what I mean? I was more focused on me me me me me, and my problems, and their reasons to reject me. I later learned that all I was doing was ‘sending vibes’ outwards towards others that I was a rejected soul. I just focused on all the bad reasons. I would isolate myself and expect others to come into the door and lick my wounds. What is theat? Self-centeredness. It is selfishness. I was selfish. I just thought about my problems, my life and how others ‘owed me’ something. Ignore these people that are coming against you. I am a Christian and after my suicide attempt Jesus told me that I was selfish. Selfishness is the opposite of what Agape love provides. Agape love is selfless. When one gets their head out their p-ass-t, they can see the Light of Day. They can see others have bigger problems than their own. In a strange sense, its a sickness of narcissism. One can have grandiose thoughts of themselves in a negative sense… how? “I am worth every penny, but everyone ie rejecting me, they are wrong and I am right, they can come kiss my p-ass-t and they owe me their lives. they are my servants to lick my wounds and I am king”……. I agree with you 100%. I was in a psychiatric hospital and I took meds. Nothing worked. Only Agape Love works. You gotta get your head out your p-ass-t and looking to all the reasons to be happy. Happiness is a choice. I disagree with EVERYONE here who is coming against your article. I overcame depression WITHOUT DRUGS. This proves that depression is a spiritual problem and NOT a clinical one.

    • Reply Toma June 13, 2013 at 12:40 PM

      I would say God bless you, Tyrone, but we both know that has already happened.

      I would like to touch on something very special you said. You said, “I wanted to agree with the world, even to my own detriment.” That is a huge problem with the world we live in today. Our masters are telling us through countless means to be a certain way, and we all want to agree with the world, even when it runs contrary to truth and to our instincts. Nobody likes rejection, including me. Nobody likes to fight, including me. But when we place truth, righteousness and selflessness ahead of ourselves we find a lot of hardship, but more importantly we find happiness. I’d rather suffer in light than in darkness.

      Thank you for your enlightening comment.

  • Reply Anonymous June 14, 2013 at 4:35 PM

    Hi

    I have major depressive disorder and also I have suffered from manic episodes.
    I agree with you that thinking positively rather than focussing on the negative will make you happy. I think that’s pretty obvious though, and people who don’t already know that must be quite miserable.

    I hope you read this and have some faith in me, a fellow human being, that I explain my experiences honestly and without embellishment. I just want you to understand a little of how it really is to live with mental illness, maybe you can learn a little tolerance from it. Of course you are entitled to your own opinion.

    Manic episodes are not just hyperactive, over confident phases. I would lose control of what I was doing, it was scary but fun. I mean this, I was not in control of myself. Obviously this will sound far fetched to someone who hasn’t experienced it, but that’s your ignorance not mine.

    During periods of my most dark depression, my thoughts were not focused on the bad things in my life. Quite the contrary, actually. I couldn’t stop thinking about how good I had it and how much I hated myself for still not being able to stop sulking.

    Sometimes the fog would lift and I would not be able to understand why I had been such a whiny person for so long, and then things would get bad again and I was just stuck.

    Please try to understand. People with real depression do not choose to think negatively, they do not choose anything. For me it was like an out of body experience sometimes.

    I am in recovery now and am learning how to pull myself back up when I fall. I do not feel sorry for myself. God challenged me and I proved myself. I am lucky.

    • Reply Toma June 14, 2013 at 4:54 PM

      My dear, you do not have a “major depressive order”. Who are they to label the extent of how your feel? And why do you let them? This makes me legitimately mad. Do you think you are less than anybody else? Do you think you are ‘crazier’ than anybody else? Because YOU ARE NOT! Excuse my French, but fuck them! You are a beautiful spirit and you deserve happiness, so let yourself have it.

      Whatever you feel, there is a tenth of an inch between it and feeling better, and don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. I don’t need to know your story to know this is true. This is how it is with all of us. I am a tenth of an inch from being in your shoes and having someone try to label me as they have labelled you.

      A few comments ago we discussed labels, and how the spirit can not be labelled, but the mind can. Focus on your spirit, and free your mind.

      I think you may benefit from my post on Duality. You need to find your true self, but to do it, you must first let your old self go.

  • Reply Dan June 16, 2013 at 4:40 PM

    You talk in your comments about how people aren’t responding to the issues raised in your article, however you aren’t listening to them. Of course a depression is focused on one’s feelings, what else could it be focused on? You don’t get symptoms of an illness from someone else having the things causing the illness do you? Therefore you don’t get a depression, from thinking of only how others are affected. You get a depression from things affecting YOU. However this doesn’t mean that depressed people are constantly affected by factors them and ONLY them.

    I have suffered a depression, and among others, a struggle I personally found was thinking of how I didn’t want to live in the world we are in. I found that seeing people suffering in all measures, while others selfishly prospered at others expense, was disgraceful, and yes it did affect me, as it made ME sad, but it only made ME sad because I was thinking of the effects on all others out there.

    While overcoming this depression, which I am still in the process of, I realised that the only way to help attempt to begin to right the wrongs that made me feel so empty, is by being part of that change. However while I have had to constructive help to help me realise this, not all do, and those who aren’t as privileged as me to have the help I have, may never climb out of the depression and may unfortunately resort to suicide.

    You can’t begin to imagine how physically debilitating depression is. At it’s worst stages you can be near completely physically paralysed, being able to literally complete tasks that are essential to your survival at that be it.

    My depression was triggered by a large number of bereavements in my family, and it spiralled from there. I then took anti-depressants and while not being an instant or complete cure, my body having the chemicals from the anti-depressants improved my state of mind, I think helping prove that depression is chemical. Before you use the psychological ‘placebo-effect’ argument as well, I was on a range of anti-depressants with only the latter affecting me the most positive way, and I find it hard to believe that I saw a name or got to a point where my sub-conscious said ‘I want THIS one to work’.

    However despite what I’ve put forward here, having seen some of your responses to comments above, I doubt people in your mind set will be able to recognise the validity of my argument as of course I’ve been depressed therefore I won’t know what I’m talking about or will be biased, and as nothing I’m say I can provide hard evidence of, it must be nonsense.

    I don’t blame you for your opinons, I blame the close-mindedness of this society for closing people’s minds as yours has been, but I beg you to try as hard as you can, as all those who overcome this make-believe illness of depression do, to try and see things from a slightly different perspective.

    • Reply Toma June 16, 2013 at 8:48 PM

      I will respond not with answers, but with a question. If you took away all of your thoughts, leaving only your body, your spirit and the beginner’s mind that you were born with, how would you see the world?

      • Reply Sam June 23, 2013 at 3:09 AM

        As a vegetable most likely, thought is who and what we are as people if there is no thought there is no person and no concept of the world. It’s all very well to say that if you wipe a person slate clean they would not be depressed and they might well not be but that’s because you have taken away the sum of their experiences which may have lead to the depression. And as a side note a few people have asked how you are qualified to make these statements so far you have not answered so again I will ask what qualifies you to pronounce judgment?

        • Reply Toma June 23, 2013 at 11:53 AM

          If I took away all of your thoughts and left you only with your experiences, in what way would Sam cease to be Sam? Your parents haven’t changed. Your childhood hasn’t changed. Who you love hasn’t changed. And what you will experience until your dying day will not change. All you do is free yourself from needless, impermanent thoughts. You are not your thoughts.

          Truth us self-qualifying. The world’s most ignorant man could speak it and it would still be the truth.

    • Reply SlapGas June 17, 2013 at 6:00 PM

      I just read your article. Though I should admit that your way of writing is good, I cannot say the same about its content. There’s no need for exaggerations and harsh words; I will just provide some brief arguments against your main points.

      In the second paragraph, you are writing the word “My” in Italic font, showing selfishness. Though you cannot prove that this is a sign of selfishness (although superficially it may seem as being), let me ask you something.
      “My dad is an alcoholic”, the sentence you wrote, followed by “Nowhere in there is there a mention of other people. It’s all about you”. Whoa there, I said “My DAD is an alcoholic”, not “I AM an alcoholic”. In which way is this NOT a mention to other people? Why is the one expressing a similar problem considered selfish? As a person who grew up having an alcoholic father, this is not selfish at all. Your particular argument seems a little inaccurate.
      How about reasons like “My dad used to beat me when I was young” or “My parents would constantly fight violently” or many, many other. Please elaborate: How are this considered as selfish questions led by selfish people?
      To sum up this argument, every person has his/her own “personal environment”. What I mean to say is that one cannot easily have a reason like “My friend’s dad beats him/her” as a depressive factor. So, having reasons from your personal environment is not selfish; it is just your people, those who are probably a part of you and your life and have an impact on your feelings and mood. The reasons/facts that affect you are more likely part of this “personal environment”.

      Moreover, I must assure you that not all reasons are like the above.