Depression. It’s a word that gets thrown around casually these days. You may hear someone say “I was so depressed over (insert some event here)” but what do they really mean? Usually they are sad. Sadness and depression look alike in some ways so how do we tell the difference?

Is It Sadness or Depression?

Sadness is a universal feeling. All humans have felt it. It usually begins with an event, or a ‘trigger’. Failing an important exam, losing a loved one, getting fired from a job; these are all things that would evoke sadness. The feelings of sadness may go on for a few days, even longer if we experience deep loss. Even in the middle of this sadness, we can still find some enjoyment, like a good song, time with friends and family, or a favorite movie. Sadness can feel big, but the feelings usually come and go. Depression is different. 

Depression Is Persistent

Depression is a medical condition where feelings of sadness last for more than two weeks. Depression can begin with an event, but instead of finding our way through it, the feelings persist. Sadness may affect how we go about our daily lives for a short while, but depression is different. 

Recognizing Depression

Sometimes it’s hard to see signs in ourselves. Here are some things to ask yourself. 

  • Do I feel like the smallest thing can make me rage or make me cry? What about anger just under the surface? 
  • Has my self care taken a nosedive? I usually eat pretty healthy, but right now am I living on chocolate and coffee? 
  • What about doing things with friends or family? Am I ghosting my favorite people or activities, zoning out with an epic Netflix binge…for weeks on end? 
  • What about keeping too busy so I don’t have time to sit still with my feelings of sadness? (Oh yeah. That one. Society very rarely gives women an excuse to not get things done.)
  • Am I struggling to get out of bed in the morning and tossing and turning all night?
  • Am I struggling to pay my bills, return calls, make decisions and in general feel hopeless about everything?
  • Do I have unexplained aches and pain in my body?
Grey Foggy Ocean with waves.  Photo by Pexels on Pixabay.

OK. I Had A Few Yeses. Now What?

Please keep in mind these signs are just a place to start, not a diagnosis. A diagnosis is always something that should be done by a therapist or clinician. But if your answers to these questions are mostly yes, getting help is the best thing you can do for yourself. Depression may not look the same in everyone. Talk to one of our counselors here at Abide Counseling to get the help you need.

There is help available. Need more information? Here are some helpful links to more information about depression and some specifically about depression in women.

(From NIMH)
For immediate help call:

988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline
Call or text 988; Llame al 988 (para ayuda en español)
Use Lifeline Chat on the web
This is a 24-hour per day, confidential support to anyone in suicidal crisis or emotional distress. Call or text 988 to connect with a trained crisis counselor. Support is also available in English via live chat.

Crisis Text Line
Text “HELLO” to 741741
The Crisis Text hotline is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week throughout the U.S. The Crisis Text Line serves anyone, in any type of crisis, connecting them with a crisis counselor who can provide support and information.

Categories: Uncategorized


Leave a Reply

Avatar placeholder

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *