Mention depression and it doesnt take long for the stereotypes to begin flowing out. Theres nothing that generates more wide-ranging opinions than depression. But it doesnt have to be something that elicits negativity all the time. Many students get along with depression just fine and they make it through college with minimal hassle.
On the other hand, 36% of students who report depression tend to drop out. Some people need support, whereas others are fine to deal with their own problems. But this guide is going to show you some of the main stereotypes of student depression.
Happy People are Never Depressed
Happy people are never happy all the time. Think about Robin Williams, who committed suicide in 2014. The diagnosis was that he had a long history of depression. And yet he seemed like the happiest person to ever live as he always had a smile on his face.
But did you know that smiling is often just a defense mechanism? Nobody worries about a guy who does nothing but smile and dances on a wave of good spirits.
Life Circumstances is What Matters
According to the Mayo Clinic, depression is actually caused by a wide range of causes. This can include anything from brain chemistry to certain traits that have been inherited. Its why people from families with a history of suicide tend to be at a much higher risk.
One of the biggest stereotypes is that depressed people must be failures. The truth is there are many successful people who are depressed. They may have fear from past failures or they may simply feel guilty about something from their past. And these are just two of potentially thousands of reasons.
Talking About Depression Has To Be Depressing
Most students who have depression are unable to talk about it with people they know. It means that the problems they have go untreated because they bottle them up inside. They wont even speak to college counseling centers on campus because they dont want to be a downer.
Its difficult to talk about depression and the idea of suicide, but it can do the world of good. Depression can be spoken about without being depressing. It just requires the right timing, the right person, and the right framing. Its best to talk about depression not when someone is in the middle of a bad spell but when they are content.
Depression is a Sign of Mental Weakness
Those who are depressed tend to be stigmatized by their peers because of the view that they are weak or lazy. Its possible to be great at your job even while dealing with the problems associated with depression. The scary thing is that people who are secretly depressed can even be a source of comfort for those who are struggling to deal with their thoughts and feelings.
Depression is a medical condition and its not something that comes from a type of bad character. Nobody would tell a basketball player that they are bad at what they do because they have a broken leg. So why is it seemingly okay to assume that someone is bad at whatever they do because they have depression?
Medication is Something for All Sufferers
Its true that depression is very much a treatable illness, and it can be treated through the use of medication. Part of understanding depression is understanding that medication is just one of many treatments. The majority of people are not on any form of medication because it doesnt work for everyone.
There are only certain people who can benefit from medication. Everyone else will use a combination of therapy and even holistic techniques. Incorporating healthy habits into your life can have a huge impact on your mental state. The worst of the symptoms can be eliminated simply through taking a walk in the park.
Depression has always been a difficult condition to treat because its effects vary for everybody. And its often difficult to settle on one treatment because everyone reacts differently.
Fight Back Against Stigma
Its important to fight back against the stigma surrounding depression. Its not an indicator that you are weak. Its simply an emotional state that you have the power to do something about. Ultimately, depression is something that can be treated and can be cured.
What do you think is the biggest misconception of depression?