Everyone should know what to look for. Sometimes depression just builds up over the years. Other times something happens that kicks the development into overdrive, such as a stressful life event. Whether fast or slow, here are the things to look out for:
- Sleeping too much or too little. -- I couldn't get out of bed. When I did, I stayed up all night because I couldn't fall back asleep no matter how tired I was.
- Eating too much or too little. -- I couldn't eat for a week or two at my worst. Other times I would stuff my face til I was a bite away from exploding.
- Fatigue -- My whole body was constantly tired. Just going to the bathroom took massive amounts of energy that I didn't have.
- Feeling worthless -- Everything I did felt like it was for nothing because I just wasn't good for anything. I didn't think I added much, if anything, to the world at that point.
- Feeling hopeless -- I felt like nothing was going to change. I was going to be cursed to a life of a depression, where nothing would ever get better because I wasn't motivated enough to try.
- Loss of interest -- Class didn't interest me. Video games didn't interest me. Hanging out with my friends was almost the last thing I wanted to do. The only thing I ever wanted to do was sleep.
- Thoughts of suicide -- Even just a quick, passing thought of how you'd be better off dead should be a warning sign. Recognizing these thoughts and, more importantly, confiding in someone else may end up saving a life.
Depression hits people of all ages, races, religions, and locations. If you think something is wrong, there is a good chance that you're right. Get help. You deserve to be happy.