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How I Found Help For Depression-My Story

Updated on April 3, 2014

Reasons for Depression

There are many reasons why people become depressed and the reasons may vary within one person’s lifetime. Some of these reasons include having a chemical imbalance, experiencing a seasonal disorder, a family genetic component, situational depression, depression that is linked to a life changing event, such as a major loss or pregnancy, and depression that incorporates anxiety or psychosis.

I recall my maternal grandmother having a general negative personality. Everything was doom and gloom. Since she lived with us, and actually shared a room with my sister and me, it was a strong influence. I didn’t understand it, nor did I ask my parents about the hardships of her life as a young girl and later, as a single, divorced mother of the 1930’s. Certainly, that could not have been easy.

Postpartum Depression

My mother was diagnosed with clinical depression shortly after my youngest brother was born. I was six then and recall sneaking into her darkened room as she lay in bed, only to be shooed out by my grandmother. Looking back on this I would venture to say she was experiencing a postpartum depression-a common occurrence following the birth of a baby when the body experiences the fluctuating hormone changes, along with emotional feelings of being anxious or overwhelmed.

Postpartum depression is a serious condition that can result in hospitalization if untreated. Approximately 13% of pregnant women experience this. It is also important to note that many mothers who experience postpartum depression are at risk of acting out towards the infant in an irrational manner, putting the baby, and possibly other family members, in harm’s way.

My father did not believe in psychiatry and was a very stoic man who had a strong personality. I’m sure he frowned on this ‘bed rest’ as unnecessary and weak. He did not support going to a mental health specialist, and back in the early 1960’s, this was not common, at least not among the working class-there was always a better place to spend that kind of money than to squander it in front of a counselor talking about what bothered you. Or, at least that is what my father felt. Years later, after he realized his error in thinking, we had many discussions about this early time of his marriage. So, my mother was unsupported, for the most part, in struggling with her illness of depression until it eventually passed.

Symptoms of a Panic Attack

Although I had the typical feelings of adolescent uncertainty, I did not experience my first real set back with depression until my first marriage failed and I was experiencing panic attacks. This was in the early 1980’s. I had no idea that it was a panic attack or that I was even feeling anxious, but thanks to my oldest brother and a very timely phone call, I did not rush out the door to the nearest emergency room. Instead, I very methodically followed his instructions and got through it.

When it first began I was doing a mundane household chore of vacuuming. By the time the anxiety was at its peak I was in a full blown panic. The symptoms of a panic attack are mostly physical and can mimic having a heart attack. In fact, I truly thought that was what I was experiencing. My mind was racing as I envisioned my two little girls having to grow up without their mother. My heart was pounding, my chest hurt, and my breathing was quick and exhilarated. My mouth was dry and I could barely speak when the phone rang.

After my brother talked me into a calm state I made an appointment with my family physician to have a physical, which checked out just fine. We talked about the emotional state I was in and she referred me to a mental health therapist. It was a necessary step to deal with the anxiety and depression brought on by the conflicted divorce and the genetic disposition I inherited toward depression.

Suicidal Thoughts

Have you ever experienced not wanting to live anymore?

See results

Seasonal Affective Disorder

Years after my divorce and remarriage I would periodically go into a low energy state in which I did not feel happy. These emotional times would usually hit in the fall and winter months, when sunlight would decrease in Michigan, where I lived. Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD, affects approximately 500,000 people annually, throughout the United States.

Treatment for SAD is often light therapy. Other forms of therapy, such as cognitive therapy, along with anti-depressant medications are also commonly used in conjunction with the light therapy. While living in Alaska, I was directed to add light therapy bulbs throughout the house to combat the winter blues that is so prevalent in that state.

Depression and Suicide

On at least three occasions my feelings of hopelessness became so strong that I entertained thoughts of ending my life. I had no will to get up in the morning; I had no thoughts of a bright future; I had no energy or interest in anything. I was saved by the love I had for my children and the knowledge that I did not want to bring them the pain of living without a mother. During those times I never shared my thoughts with my therapist. I was a nurse working in the mental health field and knew that I would be committed if I gave any inkling that I felt I did not want to live. Irrational, and perhaps irresponsible as this may have been, it was probably shame that kept me from voicing my true feelings. In the end, I was able to work through that particular time of unhappiness without medication or hospitalization. I don’t necessarily recommend this to anyone who needs either or both; however, it is how I happened to handle my personal situation.

How to Treat Depression

Click thumbnail to view full-size
Art therapy is a type of therapy used to treat depression.Music Therapy brings joy back to your spirit.Find your support system and use it.Pet therapy can help relieve lonliness and isolation.Regular exercise, like swimming, lifts your mood.Flowers can brighten a room and your moodHumor therapy: laughter lifts the spiritEat a variety of healthy food to keep energy up and maintain your strength.
Art therapy is a type of therapy used to treat depression.
Art therapy is a type of therapy used to treat depression. | Source
Music Therapy brings joy back to your spirit.
Music Therapy brings joy back to your spirit. | Source
Find your support system and use it.
Find your support system and use it. | Source
Pet therapy can help relieve lonliness and isolation.
Pet therapy can help relieve lonliness and isolation. | Source
Regular exercise, like swimming, lifts your mood.
Regular exercise, like swimming, lifts your mood. | Source
Flowers can brighten a room and your mood
Flowers can brighten a room and your mood | Source
Humor therapy: laughter lifts the spirit
Humor therapy: laughter lifts the spirit | Source
Eat a variety of healthy food to keep energy up and maintain your strength.
Eat a variety of healthy food to keep energy up and maintain your strength. | Source

How I Overcame My Depression

During one particular bout of depression I was working an afternoon shift. I was deeply troubled by a situation that left me knocked to the ground emotionally. I knew I had to treat myself with the same care and compassion I would when giving advice to the very patients I cared for. I followed a very simple modality of tuning into my inner guide and nurturing myself. I slept when I felt fatigued; I ate something each day to maintain my strength; I sought company when lonely and solitude when overwhelmed by social groups.

Each afternoon I would go to work, rewarding myself in the evening with a comedy. At first I didn’t feel like any of the movies I selected were funny, but I knew I turned a corner when I laughed long and hard out loud. My funny bone was being tickled once again. I danced, I drummed, I chanted, I sang…and I screamed loudly when I was alone in my car. I also utilized the wonderful support group of family and friends alternating their listening ears when I needed to share.

It was a time of intense self-examination…the dark night of the soul, and a time of deep, emotional healing. It took approximately four months to feel like my feet were solidly back on the ground and I could move forward in a healthy way. It was one of the most transforming and life changing times I experienced; one that I will never forget or regret. Although I did not use any medication, I also was careful not to self-medicate. Alcohol and street drugs are depressants and would compound the depressed mood.

A final word about my experience with thoughts about wanting to leave this world: The last time I felt the overwhelming feelings of hopelessness I had a shift in my perspective. It was, as best as I can describe it, a spiritual experience. In a moment of clarity I realized that I, personally, could not accept suicide as a solution to any emotional experience I was having at any given moment. I knew, without any confusion or doubt, that there was a purpose for my being on earth; and, although I may never know that reason, I could never abort my life prematurely. I was committed, in that moment of insight and translucent thought, to seeing that my life would end by natural causes, not by a strategic plan I laid out for myself. It is what I recognize as the soul’s promise of fulfillment.

These suicidal experiences have made me a more compassionate nurse, and one who can reach a depressed and suicidal patient in a way in which they can hear. When I offer a listening ear and shoulder to lean on, it is from one who has been there.

Methods of Treating Depression:

There are many methods to treat depression. The first, and most important thing to remember, is to get a thorough evaluation from a doctor. There are several medical conditions that can cause symptoms of depression or that can mimic depressive symptoms, such as a thyroid disorder, or low levels of Vitamin D. By getting a sound physical you can rule out any medical causes for your low mood. This may be as simple as getting a series of lab tests completed. Next, talk with your family physician and see if she will make a referral to a psychiatrist or psychologist. Only a psychiatrist, primary physician or Registered Nurse Practitioner can prescribe anti-depressants, if necessary, so it is important to have that referral in place.

Depression and Food

What we eat can greatly affect our moods. Eating sensibly, lightly and with nourishing, healthy choices is the solution to helping to stabilize your mood. Care for yourself in ways you would care for a child or special friend.

Eat right to improve depression

Fresh fruit and vegetables improve one's mood.
Fresh fruit and vegetables improve one's mood. | Source

Depression and Sleep

People who are depressed will often sleep too much. They consistently complain of feeling tired throughout the day despite the number of hours of sleep they get. They experience low energy and an overall lethargy and slow motivation. Conversely, they may also experience bouts of insomnia, waking up in the middle of the night and being unable to return to sleep. Practice listening to your body. If it says to move, force yourself to get up, even if it is just moving from the bed to the living room couch. Then, set a goal to move off of that couch and walk through your home, get the mail, or open the back door and check the weather-something to break the cycle. Also, sleep when you are tired, but if you are sad, don’t stay in bed…better to move.

Exercise and Depression

Most people understand that one of the benefits of exercise is that it increases the serotonin uptake into the brain, as well as releasing the endorphins into the blood stream. In addition to this, exercise will help to maintain a weight, or even lose a few pounds. Since weight gain is often a side effect of depression, this is an important bonus.

Depression and Social Support

Psychotherapy is important at the time of a depression cycle, as is listening to the need of social support. I recommend having at least three supportive listeners whom you can call and lean on to talk with, visit, or have visit you. Social isolation is very common, and therefore, it is vital that you do the opposite of what your thoughts want to guide you in doing.

You can connect with a psychiatrist, or therapist: psychiatric nurse, social worker, or psychologist, through your family physician, the local yellow pages in the telephone book, or online through search engines such as Google.

For Emergencies and ongoing depression:

If all else fails and your depression has lingered, without visible signs of improvement, longer than four to six months, you may need to discuss further treatment with your psychiatrist. Perhaps a brief hospitalization is in order.

Here is the name and phone number of a helpful resource:

NAMI (National Alliance on Mental Illness) Helpline: (U.S.) 1-800-950-6264

Famous Depressed People

Writers and Artists
All Others
Adam Duritz (Counting Crows)
Sylvia Plath
Abraham Lincoln
Billy Joel
Charles Dickens
Winston Churchill
Ashley Judd
J.K. Rowling
Betty Ford
Brooke Shields
Edger Allen Poe
Ansel Adams
Harrison Ford
Emily Dickinson
Vincent Van Gogh
Drew Carey
Leo Tolstoy
Alicia Keys
T.S. Eliot
Judy Garland
John Keats
Terry Bradshaw (football)
Marie Osmond
Mike Wallace
Frank Bruno (boxer)

Statistics about Depression

Depression affects nearly 10% of Americans annually between the ages of 18-65

More Americans suffer from depression than they do cancer.

More than 30% who suffer from depression admit to suicidal ideation.

Depression is among the most treatable psychiatric illness with 80-90% responding well to treatment.

Suicide Statistics

Suicide Statistics

Each year approximately 2 million U.S. adolescents attempt suicide.

Suicide is the tenth leading cause of death in the U.S.

4:1 males to females complete an act of suicide

Females attempt suicide three times more often as males

Firearms account for 50% of suicides

Alcohol is a factor in approximately 30% of suicides


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    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 2 years ago from North Carolina

      Hello Laurie, Thank you for your kind comment on this article/story. I appreciate you sharing about yourself. It's nice to meet you. :)

    • LaurieMaxson profile image

      Laurie Maxson 2 years ago from AL

      Wow, powerful! I have never myself suffered from depression but have a family member who is borderline. As a Personal Development coach, I teach people how to discover that we are each here for a reason. I am spiritual and believe that God has created us each uniquely and has given us all that we need to serve our purpose in this world. My passion is to serve others by helping them find their gifts. It has also helped me encourage my loved one to show them how amazing they are and how they never need to try to be anyone but themselves. Your article was moving and heartfelt. I appreciate your openness and how you served others with your story. I don't work with those individuals who have mental or behavioral health issues, as I am not licensed to do so but I try to provide the hope people need, before they reach the point of depression. God Bless you!

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 4 years ago from North Carolina

      jaydene-I am so sorry to hear about your friend, gosh, I can relate. How very sad. Sometimes, as you well know, living is such a burden. I hope you have a support system-even if just one other person to lean on. I'll be thinking of you. I know this is a difficult time for you-thank you for sharing your sad news.

    • jaydene profile image

      jaydene 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      I lost a friend to suicide on June 12th as her depression got worse and worse, as well as anxiety, and a lot of symptoms. she was unable to work due to her condition. and there was no financial help.

      she got far too overwhelmed. and she is gone now.

      i am currently battling my own depression. I am so sad to loose her but i understand how far this illness can go...............

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 4 years ago from North Carolina

      Hi CrisSp-secrets are the real killers; they detach us from out authentic self. Whether someone chooses to go public, as I have here, or not is an individual preference. Also, how much one chooses to share. Obviously, I really went out on a limb, but it is part of what was happening to me, and to deny that is a slow death-the denial of truth that 'kills' our soul, as you state.

      Part of why I chose to share so much is exactly because of the secrets that are kept within. Sometimes, it takes just one person to extend the helping hand to those who are depressed/suicidal. It makes the world seem just a bit more friendly and less lonely of a place to be in.

      Thanks for your lovely comments. :)

    • CrisSp profile image

      CrisSp 4 years ago from Sky Is The Limit Adventure

      Very interesting. Thank you for sharing your story. That's very admirable. I feel you and let's admit it, not everyone would have the courage to talk it out loud. And you know what hurts? It hurts when you go through something that kills you inside but you have to act like it doesn't affect you--that's a killer.

      I love the honesty of your hub and thank you for shedding out some lights.

      Love from the sky~

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Hi andromida-thanks for your comments. Depression comes in many forms and situational depression is one. For some people when a situation throws them off they don't 'bounce back' from it the way some other people might. Thanks, I appreciate your follow and share.

    • andromida profile image

      syras mamun 5 years ago

      I guess situational depression is something that we might control very well if we are serious about it. Before reading your hub I did not know that vitamin D can cause depression.I've tweeted this hub to my friends and also followed you in Twitter.

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Exactly-that's why health care professionals emphasize the importance of exercise or some physical activity. Thanks for stopping by.

    • jeugenejohn profile image

      jeugenejohn 5 years ago from Kerala

      Thanks Denise. No wonder after a rigorous workout, people feel an elevated form of happiness and boost in self confidence.

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Hi jeugenejohn-sorry that it took a bit for me to reply to your comments here. I wanted to check on the info in the question you asked before giving you anything incorrect.

      Both of these are mood enhancers and both are partially produced in the brain. Serotonin is also produced in the intestine, believe it or not, and that is actually where it is predominately produced. The other 10 % is produced in the brain. Some people have very low Serotonin levels which affects their ability to 'feel good' and therefore they are depressed. Anti-depressants can aid in enhancing, or lifting, their mood. Serotonin is blocked from exiting as it normally does and therefore it results in a 'build up', if you will, in the central nervous system and brain and then the concentrated levels of serotonin increase the mood.

      Endorphines are chemicals that are produced in various parts of the body, including the pituitary gland and the brain. It is also a 'feel good' chemical that has been compared to the feelings that come with use of opiates. It has also been referred to as the 'runner's high'. The release of endorphins into the blood stream can come from physical activity, such as exercise, or mental activity such as meeting a challenge. Some have also noted that laughter can bring out endorphins. Endorphins can also inhibit pain and has been referred to as the natural pain reliever.

      Both are mood enhancers, both have some production in the brain, but endorphins are a protein and serotonin is a neurotransmitter made of a different chemical composition.

      Good question...I hope I was able to answer it. Thanks for commenting.

    • jeugenejohn profile image

      jeugenejohn 5 years ago from Kerala

      A very interesting hub, Denise. Even nowadays people avoid going to a counselor for help. There might be many reasons, but mostly the feeling that society would scorn at them if they are admitted to a mental institute. But again like you said, through will power and determination (minus counselling and medication), depression can be overcome. However, there are chances that the depression can get worse by this method and can even lead to suicidal tendency. why do we need to take this risk, specially with our life. With proper medication and counselling, a patient can recover easily without opting for the hard way.

      Denise, Could you tell me the difference between serotonin and endorphin. Both I believe are produced by the brain and one is called the feel good hormone.

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Hello Louisa, thank you for reading and I appreciate your feedback. Welcome to Hubpages.

    • Louisa Rogers profile image

      Louisa Rogers 5 years ago from Eureka, California and Guanajuato, Mexico

      Hi Denise, thank you for your honest and helpful Hub. I was particularly drawn to the way you healed yourself, by turning to your inner guide and paying close attention to your needs. I have certainly had blue periods in my life, and many life challenges, but not like what you describe. I do have a sister who has many emotional difficulties (both depression and anxiety), so I try to understand the illness so I can be helpful. Voted up and useful. I'm a newbie here, just getting going.

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Hello Tiffany. Thanks for sharing your experience here in your comment. You're right-it does help knowing we are not often we feel that we are, don't we? :)

    • tiffany delite profile image

      tiffany delite 5 years ago from united states

      i have struggled of and on with depression for all of my adult life. it is not easy to share our stories, but at the same time, i believe that sharing can be healthy. thank you so much for sharing your story. it always helps to know that we aren't out here struggling alone! blessings!

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Thanks for reading this hub and commenting, RealConception7. I'm always grateful to read that a particular hub, such as this one, is helpful to someone. :) Enjoy your weekend.

    • RealConception7 profile image

      RealConception7 5 years ago

      This really helps, thanks for posting.

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Hello divacratus, thank you for your comments here. I appreciate it. :)

    • divacratus profile image

      Kalpana Iyer 5 years ago from India

      So happy to know that you handled things so well instead of succumbing to all that internal pressure. I have gone through depression myself but nothing too acute, but I can really understand what you had gone through. Glad you're okay now!

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Julie-I'm so glad you've never experienced this problem. It isn't fun! It depletes one's energy, among other things. Thank you so much for sharing this today. :) I appreciate it.

      Hello Peanutritious-I'm sending you Hugs and well wishes to you for your fortitude in starting fresh! It can be done and I'm glad you are well on your way with being aware of what you need to do to take care of yourself. People who don't understand see that alcohol and drug use is a choice that one can eagerly and willingly stop at any time...or choose never to start. It does not work like that. Self medication is the coping mechanism to the symptoms of the disease of depression. It isn't always a black and white decision.

      I'm not sure what your story is or what age you started to makes a difference when all we've known is the effects of depression, anxiety, stress, or trauma in our childhood and the method of coping is what is most convenient at hand. If there is no outside source of support it is what is most conveniently continued. I appreciate you sharing some of the consequences that you have had to endure based on an earlier time of life in which you were not as savvy about your own needs. I'm sorry you cannot get a job...which does puzzle me because a good friend of mine is an ex felon for drug dealing and is working in a good job right now. Take care and stay on the healthy side of the balance scale. :) Thanks for sharing.

    • Peanutritious profile image

      Tara Carbery 5 years ago from Cheshire, UK

      This was a tenderley written hub, I'm glad you have come through to the other side of it. I have battled with depression all of my life and self medicated with alcohol and drugs for many years. This was the worst thing I could have done and as a result have lost my job, home and have a criminal record which ensures I will probably never find a job again. Now I find, regular exercise, getting outside and regularly talking to my friends keeps it in check most of the time. I want the second half of my life to be the happy one that the first wasn't. We are never alone in feeling like this.

    • Jools99 profile image

      Jools99 5 years ago from North-East UK

      Denise, I have never had depression (at least I don't think I have!) but know others who have suffered with it and I think all of the advice you give here is excellent - recognising the signs is probably the first step but after that it's about managing your life with this illness. Well Done you on finding your way out f it :o) Voted up and shared.

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Hi TJ-gee, looking at the nondescript photo here it finally connected when you said you joined HP. Anyone who comments from the outside does not show a photo or avatar space. Well, let me officially welcome you to Hubpages, then, haha. Nice to meet you.

      I'll send you an email with the info about grounding. Glad to hear you are hanging in there. I know how difficult some days can be. For me, I've been struggling with pain issues lately and have good and bad days. Thanks for updating me. I'll check out your profile page. :)

    • profile image

      tjmerrill 5 years ago

      Thanks Denise! I just signed up for Hub Pages and I was looking it over when I came across your page, that is how I made my comment. I will keep you up to date on how I am doing. Today has been rough but I have made it through it so far. You mentioned grounding oneself and connecting to the earth. Would really like to know more about it if you don't mind. Again thanks.

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      tjmerrill-I'm not sure how you connected here to this article, but I'm glad that you did and that you found it helpful. I can certainly sympathize with your emotional pain. I wish you the very best and want to encourage you to never give brave and keep your feet on the ground - seriously.

      One of the things I've noticed, both with my self and people I have worked with in the hospital, is this 'airy' feeling like there is no 'anchor'. A practice of grounding oneself and connecting to the earth can be very beneficial.

      I would be happy to have you contact me for more info or just to update me on how you are doing. It isn't easy, but I have a strong belief that YOU can do it. Take care.

    • profile image

      tjmerrill 5 years ago

      Hi ,

      I want to tell you this was very helpful. I have had major depression and anxiety most of my life which I could manage with meds. For the past year or more it has really been rough . I have gone to a partial hospitalization for this which seemed to help a lot. Now that the program is over I have gone back to the way I was before. I am really tired of this yoyo everyday!!! Thanks for the information!!

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Hi Jennifer-good for you for overcoming your depression by shifting your perspective. That really makes a difference. Thanks for reading.

    • jenbeach21 profile image

      jenbeach21 5 years ago from Orlando, FL

      A wonderfully written hub. I also struggled with depression a few years ago. I saw overcame mine also by shifting my perspectives and looking at things from a new perspective. Thank you for sharing.

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Hi Carter-first, I find it incredibly sad that this diagnosis hits children at this age level, and I do believe the statistics. How sad that our children do not have more happiness and joy in their lives.

      Second-thank you for your read and comments. I appreciate them, as well as you. Thanks for the votes and share. :)

    • carter06 profile image

      Mary 5 years ago from Cronulla NSW

      I just found your really informative article Denise...this will surely help so many readers, many may not even be aware of SAD...depression is a serious mental health illness and over here in oz 1 in 5 school children are diagnosed with it and as a school counselor it topped the list of student issues I dealt with each are great to write this and very brave to share your own journey...thank you...voted up +++ & shared.

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Hello iguidenetwork-thanks for sharing where you're at. I understand how debilitating lack of sleep can be. I usually work 12 hr midnight shifts and they are NO fun. Thanks for your encouragement.

      Hi jaydene-thank you for sharing your experience. Depression at the depth that you have experienced it can leave one room to movement...the great, dark void. I am so happy to read that your children, as did mine, (and now your grandkids), are helping to keep you waking up in the morning. Please feel free to contact me via my email address. I'd like to hear more from you. Thanks for reading and commenting.

    • jaydene profile image

      jaydene 5 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      You have provided so much information here, I have the last year being going through the most devastating depression in my life. Courage to endure a lot of pain, to sit with feelings of such agony, and tell yourself they will go away, is the most incredible thing to do. the depths can be so low, where all hope is lost. Fortunately I have many reasons to live, and although single , i have Three beautiful daughters, and soon 8 grandchildren. They are my motivation. to soldier onwards. Thank you for sharing this awesome article. Your openness and honesty is much to be admired. :)

    • iguidenetwork profile image

      iguidenetwork 5 years ago from Austin, TX

      Depression and lack of sleep -- that's where I'm at. I hope I will never reach the suicidal level, so far I haven't thought of that. Congratulations -- overcoming depression takes a lot of courage and will power. :)

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Hi BlissfulWriter-there is no doubt that food affects mood. There are plenty of studies and research supporting that. I find it interesting that your findings show an increase in a depressed mood with a low cholesterol, low fat diet. I can understand the low mood with the mineral and omega - 3 deficiency. I'm not familiar with the other factors. Thanks for your insights.

      BTW-yes, there are many causes for depression, which I did state in the opening paragraph. And, I feel it is very important to get a thorough medical exam because there are physical conditions that cause depression. Thanks for stopping by.

    • BlissfulWriter profile image

      BlissfulWriter 5 years ago

      Since there are many causes of depression, there are many ways to overcome it. So it is a rather individual thing. I've been looking into how food affects mood. My findings are that low-cholesterol, low dietary fat, magnesium deficiency, omega-3 deficiency may result in depressed mood for some individuals. So the opposite might improve mood for those in which this is the case.

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Well, Sam...that is an interesting comment. What more can I say?

    • profile image

      Sam 5 years ago

      The 2004 Tsunami was a inside job

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Hello Vinaya-I'm so glad to know that your father was able to get the help he needed and that he was healed. Thank you for sharing how important it is to seek all types of relief when one solution is not effective. In fact, alternative therapy is an important, significant, and often discarded type of healing in this country, which I find is a real shame. Thanks for visiting the hub.

    • Vinaya Ghimire profile image

      Vinaya Ghimire 5 years ago from Nepal


      Because of acute depression, my father was under medication for several years. Drugs did not help him, and he went for faith healing. This alternative therapy helped him a lot.

      Thanks for sharing your story.

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Hi Krharp05-thank you for reading. I appreciate your feedback. The subject of depression is most definitely one that many people do not understand and want the depressed one to 'get over it'. Thanks for the votes and adding the link. I enjoyed reading yours for its helpful and healthy suggestions.

    • krsharp05 profile image

      Kristi Sharp 5 years ago from Born in Missouri. Raised in Minnesota.

      This is an absolutely wonderful hub. I would love to link this to my hub as well. There is a lot of excellent and thorough information included that has been beneficial for so many people.

      You provide terrific photos and I love that you include the rubric of famous people who have also been touched by depression. It's an interesting and unique way to discuss a topic that is so often ugly and unpalatable. Thank you for sharing your insight and experience. Voted Up, Awesome & Interesting -K

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Martie-thanks for reading and commenting. I love your advice about falling in love - yes, that would be a wonderful way out. Thanks for the votes.

      Sam-thank you for coming back and answering my questions. I hope that you are able to make connections with people who are able to bring you new joy. I'm wondering what your future plans are now, and also, have you had any psychological or grief therapy? It may be helpful.

    • MartieCoetser profile image

      Martie Coetser 5 years ago from South Africa

      Denise, I could so relate with all you've said in here and I can but only affirm that this is an excellent hub about depression. I'm pinning this in my personal library. Not that I plan to ever fall in depression again - I have learned how to use my senses to trigger the release of serotonin and endorphins. Focus on what makes us feel happy, is the best medicine, including watching comedies. Laughing is free medicine. Falling in love is another quick way to get out of depression. All those dopamine in the bloodstream give us wings. Of course, most people do not have the opportunity to explore this method. Lol!

      Voted up and awesome!

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      Sam 5 years ago

      I live in ST . Louis Missouri and no I am don with school but i was Brin in Memphis Tenn and my family was chilean

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Well Sam, I can understand how this would be for you. I'm wondering where you are now? Do you live with another family? Where do you go to school or what do you do? I hope you are able to recreate a life for yourself.

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      Sam 5 years ago

      Every day and night i am with out my family it hurts me very bad

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Sam---how very tragic. I'm not sure what to tell you about why these things happen this way. I cannot imagine the depth of your sadness and loneliness for them. Of course you miss all ten of them. This is a very depressing situation. How do you cope with this and where do you live now? I'm curious and if you wish to write to me again, feel free to. You can connect to my email by going to my profile page and clicking fan mail...and in that box, the button for 'email' message.

      My thoughts and prayers will be with you...take care and be kind and nurturing to yourself. I hope to hear from you again.

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      Sam 5 years ago

      My mom and dad and my brothers and sisters all 10 of them died by the 2004 Tsunami when i was 11 years old and now i am 18 years old and i still miss all 10 of them

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Hi btrbell-I'm so glad that you found this hub helpful. Thanks for your comment and the votes. :)

    • btrbell profile image

      Randi Benlulu 5 years ago from Mesa, AZ

      What a great comprehensive hub. I too have suffered from different forms of depression throughout the years. I found his hub so relatable and useful. Thank you and good luck!up and useful!

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Hello Sandcastles...thank you for reading and commenting on that part. It is so true...and it was so amazing. I can still clearly recall where I was, what I was doing, and the calm, absolute, 'knowing' of this fact. Thanks for stopping by.

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      SandCastles 5 years ago

      That's inspiring: " I knew, without any confusion or doubt, that there was a purpose for my being on earth".

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      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Hi marsei-well, when you go back to your hub: the Bell Jar, you will read my last comment. I've been unable to post your link here just yet...there is some type of glitch about automatic content filters and the ads have been disabled and for some reason, I cannot add the link. I am sorry, as I wanted to connect our hubs, and I am working on this.

      I am glad to know you are learning to stay in the present. That is invaluable whether someone suffers from depression or not. It is so very, very important, especially in this crazy world we live in with all of the many, many distractions. Take care and thanks for the vote up.

      Now-get a good nights rest and don't forget to listen to that inner voice of guidance. Love your last question about why do you write, BTW. :)

    • Marsei profile image

      Sue Pratt 5 years ago from New Orleans

      I like the hub, Denise. You are helping who knows how many people by writing about your experiences. I am envious that you figured out relatively early that you needed to nurture yourself. I'm still working on that one. The thing that has helped me the most recently is making myself stay in the present as consistently as I can. Great hub and voted up.


    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Hi Gail-thank you for commenting and sharing your own experience here. It is a vulnerable place to reveal this to the public, however, it brings the issue to a more personal experience, which will often reach more people. Thanks for the Votes and share. :)

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      Gail Sobotkin 5 years ago from South Carolina

      Aw Denise, this hub touched me so deeply with its tremendous insight and compassion and I could so relate to it as severe clinical depression runs in my family and I have, at times, suffered from clinical depression myself (for which I sought professional treatment that was a tremendous help).

      I admire how you used your own experiences to help you become a more compassionate nurse: "These suicidal experiences have made me a more compassionate nurse, and one who can reach a depressed and suicidal patient in a way in which they can hear. When I offer a listening ear and shoulder to lean on, it is from one who has been there."

      Thank you for sharing this on HubPages.

      Voted up, useful, awesome, beautiful and interesting. And shared.

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Hi Stessily-thank you for your sweet compliment. I appreciate that.

      Audrey-thank you. You are one of my dear friends here. Still looking forward to our cup of tea together. :)

      Hi Elle64-I'm sorry to hear that you are having difficulty with your husbands low mood. I know what you're experiencing when you say that it sucks the energy out of the family. I live with someone who has a toxic isn't easy. Is he on an anti-depressant? Has he seen a doctor re: his symptoms? If no to either of these questions...I would encourage you to persuade him to see one for the sake of his health and the health of the family dynamics. Take care, Elle, and let me know what results.

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      elle64 5 years ago from Scandinavia

      My husband is depressed at the moment- I find it hard to live with him,because he is so low, and sucks the energy out of the family- everything is doom an gllom. I hope and pray ,things will lighten up soon. thanks for a wonderfull hub.

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      Audrey Hunt 5 years ago from Nashville Tn.

      Dear Denise - Thank you dear friend for sharing your story. You have provided help, encouragement and hope for those suffering from this all-too-common disorder. And I would venture to guess that writers suffer from depression too.

      I've always been impressed with the high degree of compassion you manifest. Is there a more needed and beautiful trait to have? I think not.

      You are a diamond in my hub-life and I love you for all that you have given to me. I wish you great joy, contentment and peace always.

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      stessily 5 years ago

      Denise, Thank you for sharing the reminder about kindness which you gave to your daughters. Your reminder to them about the importance of kindness to one and all, including both bullies and unnoticeables, exemplifies compassionate wisdom, the highest form of wisdom. Actions and words deriving from compassionate wisdom always make a discernible difference in life, as attested by the "unnoticeables" whose difficult school years were brightened by your daughters' kindnesses.

      You also display compassionate wisdom is writing this hub, which, from the comments, clearly makes a difference for many.

      Appreciatively, Stessily

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Hi Susan-thanks for offering your own experiences here. I agree that in our grandmothers era there were hardships that we did not experience and less choices to manage things...not everyone had money to spend on therapy and back then, it was mostly seen as a type of hysteria or self indulgence...thanks for the share and vote up. :)

      Hi Victoria-definitely check into getting a light box for your SAD They are at effective! People from all over the 'darkened' states and countries use them. I had to smile about your observation re: the poets. Yes, I thought that also...I guess the mood brings on the muse??? Thanks for reading and commenting.

      Hi Alecia-thank you for your kind comments. I think that we are in good company. Stay strong and know when to reach out for help!

      EllaBee-you are wise to listen to your inner guidance and follow that path. It is very easy to do the opposite...ego drives us to 'take control' and distract ourselves with many things, including alcohol or other drugs to numb us from our emotional pain. Thank you for your feedback. :)

      Hello Ruchira-Depression does seem to be becoming more widespread. Not sure if it is a general dismal society or discouragement about the condition of life...and there are other factors. More people turn to alcohol and drugs as quick fixes but they just compound the feelings of depression.

      My depressed mood usually has to do with a sense of hopelessness regarding the condition of my life, although sometimes it arises from the chasm of my soul and the hint of the separation of man and can get quite deep and philosophical. In those times I am assured that, like everything in this lifestream, "this too shall pass" and I just sit still and meditate until it does. Thanks for reading and commenting, and all the well wishes. :)

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      Ruchira 5 years ago from United States

      Depression is becoming so common these days, Denise.

      We could blame the economy and various factors associated with it. Inflation is high and the peer pressure is also burdening man. To become aware of one's deed during such a time is commendable and reaching out to others who can double cheers!

      I am glad you found someone to hang upon and get out of this phase of your life, Denise.

      Wishing you the best, Denise.

      Good and informative hub!

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      ElleBee 5 years ago

      This is a great hub! I am so happy you mentioned the importance of not self-medicating. I have anxiety/depression and it is definitely important for me to remember not to self medicate. While I do drink socially, as a general rule I don't drink anytime I feel like I'm in a "low." For me that means not drinking at the end of a stressful day, but it also means watching for signs that I'm entering a low period and not drinking during that time even if I feel like I'm having a good day or if I'm in a social drinking situation during a period when I've been feeling a bit blue. In the past few years I've learned a lot more about my depression and about the signs to look for in myself, so it's starting to feel much more manageable thankfully.

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      Alecia Murphy 5 years ago from Wilmington, North Carolina

      I've definitely been depressed before and it is a dark place. There was a time I did not know how I would get out of it but thankfully I got help. Even though it is a part of my life I don't like to think about, I often think where I would be if I didn't get help.

      You are very brave for sharing your story. Thanks so much for writing this hub.

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      Victoria Lynn 5 years ago from Arkansas, USA

      I think it's wonderful that you came out of your depression without meds. Proud of you!Looking at your list of famous people, I find it funny (sort of!) that 4 of my fave poets were depressed. Poe, Plath, Dickinson, and Keats. I guess I'm not in bad company. haha.

      Thanks for the info. This is a very helpful hub. I've thought of getting those lights for winter time SADness. Thanks!

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Leslie-thanks for stopping by-your aunt is a wise woman...I try to follow that philosophy when I notice myself doing the 'comparison jig'.

      Anxiety disorders are difficult to deal with, especially something like PTSD. Glad to know that you've gotten a handle on yours. The solutions you've mentioned here are right on...ones I've encouraged my patients to engage in. Slowing the mind down, along with the breath and movements, is significant in overcoming the 'racing mind' and drive to distract ourselves from feelings of being out of control and impending doom. Enjoy your Sunday. :)

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      Susan Holland 5 years ago from Southwest Missouri

      Denise, this is extremely informational. I have experienced seasonal depression when there is no sun and postpartum. The postpartum was the most difficult for me. I take L-Theanine for panic attacks and, when I am having a bad day, I take extra vitamin D. Both seem to work for me.

      I could see your grandmother in some of my family members. Maybe it was the hardships in their lives that made them so negative. They didn't have the wealth of information or attention for depression we have today. I am thankful we have resources today.

      Great hub! Votes and shared! :-)

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Hi Pamela-your comments always lift my spirits. It's true that depression hits many, many people. Thanks for sharing your thoughts about this subject and your own experience. :)

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Lizzy-thanks for reading and for your feedback. Courage, maybe...stupidity, sometimes I think so. :( But, I hit the publish button despite all of that. I went from Fairbanks Alaska to San Francisco, CA so I know what you are talking about re: SAD. Many good points made by your comments, thanks.

    • ImKarn23 profile image

      Karen Silverman 5 years ago

      Wow...just wow, my friend! I am soo sorry for your suffering! I suffer from anxiety and was diagnosed with ptsd in 2007..i was forced to stop working and dial down the type A personality - or die - period. I took up tai chi and yoga - i moved slowly and consciously for the first time in my life and i refused to feel guilt..

      it was 2 years of hell - but well worth it!

      Suicide means you can never see what tomorrow holds! If you died today - tomorrow may have held every answer!

      My aunt told me something when i was a little girl - and for some reason it stuck with me and helps me through rough patches: There will always be people who have more than you, and, there will always be people who have less than you. Be happy with what you have.

      Great hub, dear!

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 5 years ago from United States

      This is a very informative hub about a problem many people experience at least once in their lifetime and some people live with depression constantly. I am glad you overcame your depression and you obviously have a very good understanding of the types of depressions. I think this hub will help a lot of people as mostly we don't want to admit we even have depression. I experienced depression with a horrible fist marriage decades ago and sought help. Thanks goodness I didn't continue to live that way. There are answers out there and your suggestions were excellent.

    • DzyMsLizzy profile image

      Liz Elias 5 years ago from Oakley, CA

      Very well explained, and I admire your courage in sharing such intimate details of your situation.

      I have had bouts of depression--but there is not a doggoned thing anything or anyone can do about it. As I told my doctor, "Taking a pill is not going to fix the economy, and our financial situation is the underlying cause of my depression." Furthermore, those pills tend to have a cumulative effect, taking up to 6 weeks to kick in and make you feel better. Sorry, but I need to feel better NOW, not 6 weeks down the road!

      I know I suffered from SAD before we moved here--but in the wrong end of the year. I used to live in San Francisco and Pacifica, where the summers are cold, foggy and windy. I found that to be depressing. Summer is for being outdoors, playing and having fun, which is hard to do if you're cold and miserable. (I can't handle being cold.) I don't have SAD in the winter--I expect the weather to be miserable then, and it doesn't bother me. I feel much better now that we live where there are REAL summers.

      Suicide? I've never been that low--I think the thought crossed my mind at my lowest point about 25 or 30 years ago...but ultimately, I'm a chicken, and afraid of not an option. Besides, as my current husband says, "Suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem; not to mention a very selfish act, ignoring the broken hearts of those you leave behind."

      I'm glad you were able to chase your shadows, and find happiness again. Voted up, interesting and useful.

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Danette-it's nice to know that after allllll these years there are still new things to learn about each other, haha. It keeps the relationship fresh, doesn't it? Thanks for sharing your info, which I think I had known about but have forgotten that. Your exercise is a great enhancer of mood as well. Thanks for the vote.

      Hi Sherry-it is amazing that what happens to us is often interpreted as a phase, or a normal part of life, or well...whatever it is that we so ignorantly and naively tolerate. Thanks for your comments and likewise, I'm glad you pulled through as well.

    • Sherry Hewins profile image

      Sherry Hewins 5 years ago from Sierra Foothills, CA

      Depression is a dark burden that so many of us have carried at some time in our lives. I'm so glad you made it through yours. Thanks for sharing this information. Amazingly, when I was depressed I didn't even recognize what I was going through. I just thought my life sucked and I'd be better off dead.

    • Danette Watt profile image

      Danette Watt 5 years ago from Illinois

      Denise, depression is certainly something that runs in our family. I too have been suicidal twice in my life, actually had a knife out but couldn't do it and very thankful I had a young child to care for the 2nd time I was going through a major depression. For many many years I refused to have a handgun in the house for fear I'd use it on my self one day. Now, it's not a problem.

      Art therapy definitely helped me - it accesses a different part of the brain and our emotions. I highly recommend an alternative therapy to anyone feeling stuck in regular "talk" therapy.

      Great hub, learned something new about you (anxiety attack and our eldest brother helping you through it). :) Voted up and interesting.

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Hi Lipnancy-thanks for your comments and empathy. Depression is certainly not, as you state here, a matter of feeling sad and getting over it. It can be brought on suddenly-as in a hormonal imbalance after being pregnant; (baby blues), or be a slow moving 'low mood' that is part of a family condition. It's important to be able to know when it is from a situation, such as grief, or other psychological and emotional issues and to seek help for this. Thanks again for stopping by.

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      Nancy Yager 5 years ago from Hamburg, New York

      Thanks for the education. It is difficult for people to understand that depression is not about being sad. People mistakenly think that if they can do something nice for you. You will be happy again. It takes the depressed person many months or even years to fall into depression therefore, it will take just as long to work your way out of it.

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Hi Billy-thank you for reading and your enthusiastic encouragement. I appreciate both, :) Enjoy the rest of your weekend.

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      Bill Holland 5 years ago from Olympia, WA

      Bravo Denise! A powerful story and one that will most definitely help many who read it. I have no doubt there are thousands out there right now who have suffered through this and have no idea what to do about it.....and you may be helping many of them if they read this. What a wonderful gift that would be, and all because you told your story. Great job!

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Thank you, Stessily, I appreciate reading that. One often never knows the impact we have on each other throughout this life stream, both in a positive and negative way. We do make a difference in each other's lives in ways unseen.

      When my children were young I would remind them about the importance of being kind to everyone, even a bully or someone so unpopular that they were 'unnoticeable'. Years later, after they graduated, they would run into former classmates who would share their painful years in middle and high school often sighting the acknowledgment received from my children as their one bright spot that got them through.

      You, as well as your sister Derdriu, are bright spots here on Hubpages. Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have a peaceful weekend.

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      stessily 5 years ago

      Denise, Thank you for your beautiful compliments which warm my heart and also soothe my soul. They are compliments which I gladly return to you, for your words, in your hubs and in your comments, are refreshing, for me and for many many others.

      Appreciatively, Stessily

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Stessily-I appreciate your insightful comments. You always deliver words that soothe the soul at just the right time. Thanks for stopping by. :)

      alahiker28-thank you for your comments and encouragement. I appreciate them. :)

    • alahiker28 profile image

      Vicki Parker 5 years ago from the Deep South

      What a great testimony and a fabulous tribute to your inner strength. Many of us have been there, and it is, as you say, self-defining and character building. Voted up.

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      stessily 5 years ago

      Denise, This sentence pinpoints the essence of a graceful, healthy approach to life's challenges: "I knew I had to treat myself with the same care and compassion I would when giving advice to the very patients I cared for." Displaying compassion to ourselves is an important process, for we all have hidden agendas which niggle at us from the shadows of remembered or forgotten experiences. Perceiving this insight ensues from that painful journey known as the "dark night of the soul". The reward is what you describe as "the soul’s promise of fulfillment".

      Your sincerity in sharing your triumph over depression and suicidal thoughts is inspiring, refreshing, enlightening, and encouraging and also expresses your compassionate wisdom.

      Appreciatively, Stessily

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Hi Ruby-thanks for your feedback. Yes, as nurses, we help people with this disease. It's always a tad more challenging when it falls into our own laps. Thanks for stopping by. :)

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      Ruby Jean Fuller 5 years ago from Southern Illinois

      Bravo, Your message is loud and clear. Depression is real and the most debilitating occurrence. Your tip are useful if heeded, Thank you..Cheers

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Thanks Sunshine, for your encouragement.

      Hello Diana-good for you re: the positive thoughts. Low self esteem is something that can affect anyone at any age. Glad you conquered yours.

      Hi Mary-thanks for your comments and sharing. It can be gripping...but, I've seen people who had it worse than I had. My heart goes out to them.

      Arlene-thank you for your comments and sharing your experience of losing your friend. I appreciate your encouragement.

      India-I'll take those Hub Hugs and give more back to you. Thanks for your kind words.

      Hello Liz, my new friend and coach from telepathic waves, LOL Thank YOU. I appreciate your comment.

      Thanks Daphne. I understand what you are saying re: the various ways that other conditions can mask as a psychological one, such as depression. That is why it is so important to get a thorough check up to rule out some of the other possibilities. Thanks for your feedback.

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      Daphne Shadows 5 years ago

      Wow. I'm so glad you didn't take your life. There's so much you have to live for and others you can help with your openness.

      They doctors thought I had depression for a long time. Turns out that I have Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and THAT caused me to develop depression. Also, genetics made it easier for me to be depressed.

      Its not something that goes away and its not something you can 'cure', so I'm glad you're upfront with yourself about it and glad you're in the positive mind set.

      Awesome hub!

    • lizcosline profile image

      lizcosline 5 years ago from Wyncote,Pa.

      Be so very proud of YOU.

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      India Arnold 5 years ago from Northern, California

      This article is sure to help many who suffer from depression, as well as those who love them. I find your generosity in sharing your personal battle and achievements surrounding the problem to be quite brave. You have long been a hub hero of mine, and this hub is simply another reason why. Thank you for sharing a part of your self, Denise. Honored to have read your piece.

      HubHugs My Friend~

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      Arlene V. Poma 5 years ago

      Simply awesome, Denise! This was such a pleasure to read. Not only did you weave examples of how you and your family dealt with depression, you gave important insights and suggestions on how to get out of it with some effort and simple distractions. No one wants to be alone and suffer from depression, but many people do. I had a friend commit suicide over a dozen years ago because she never could get out of her depressive mode. I later learned that she had been suicidal all of her life, and could have possibly been bi-polar. But, at the same time, she never took advantage of the medical treatment that was offered to her. She suffered in silence. Her death still brings me pain, but I have managed to let go of asking why she did it. It helped that you gave a list of famous and successful people who didn't wear depression like a ball and chain. A+++ for honesty and hope.

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      Mary Hyatt 5 years ago from Florida

      Great Hub. I personally have never experienced depression as you talk about, but I've had friends who have. Must be a terrible experience.

      I voted this Hub UP, will share.

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      Diana L Pierce 5 years ago from Potter County, Pa.

      Good hub, Denise. I'm so glad you found a cure. I think this is a problem that doesn't get much attention because most hate to admit there is a problem. I finally was able to do something about my low self-esteem once I come to grips with the fact I needed to stay away from what was bringing me down. Positive thinking really helps.

    • Sunshine625 profile image

      Linda Bilyeu 5 years ago from Orlando, FL

      Thank you for sharing your journey Denise. I hope it helps many people who also have to deal with depression and/or anxiety. Wishing you continued success.

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      TeachableMoments-thank you for taking that Leap of Faith and trusting the supportive environment with your 'confession'. I'm happy to read that 'something clicked inside my brain and I learned how to love myself.' That is wonderful and so very important.

      There is an obvious familial thread regarding the depressive cycle. My bet is that one or both of your parents or grandparents were depressed, but this was either not discussed or not recognized. People who do not suffer from depression don't 'get it' as to why those who do are unhappy. Never mind them...Keep a watchful eye on your daughter, especially as she nears the age that you first began to feel depressed: age nine. Then, you'll know the next step to take. Keeping it in the open and not a secret to be ashamed of is part of the solution. Thank you so much for sharing your story. I appreciate it.

    • TeachableMoments profile image

      TeachableMoments 5 years ago from California

      Thank you, thank you for writing about your struggles with depression. I am going to take a major leap of faith and admit...I have also suffered from depression. It started at a very young age, about 9, and I always knew there was something not quite right in the way I took in information. My childhood was not easy, I always took things in so deeply, and I didn't know how to seek help. As a young adult I battled the demons. One time they almost won. Then, after years and years of therapy, something clicked inside my brain and I learned how to love myself. I still have setbacks from time to time, but I am strong. Sometimes I worry about what the future holds for my daughter, depression runs in our family, but being a survivor of depression I feel confident in my ability to recognize the signs and get help when needed. I strongly believe in the power of love and I sure do love my daughter. My family loves me unconditionally and they played a major part in my healing process. Thank you for this beautiful hub. Voted up.

    • Denise Handlon profile image

      Denise Handlon 5 years ago from North Carolina

      Frank-I laughed out loud at your 'virtual stand' haha. I appreciate your 'showing up' here and your kind comments. Thanks. Hugs to you.

      Hello Sandrabusby-thank you for reading and adding your thoughts-I appreciate your sharing. :)

    • sandrabusby profile image

      Sandra Busby 5 years ago from Tuscaloosa, Alabama, USA

      Beautifully and compassionately written by "someone who knows." Voted up and shared.

    • Frank Atanacio profile image

      Frank Atanacio 5 years ago from Shelton

      Bravo as I stand and appluad you.. I'm not actually standing.. it's a virtual stand.. nevertheless it's a heart-filled virtual stand... your over-coming the heavy challegne you faced is amazing.. your story can help many others on that thin line.. bless you and stay blessed