Shop Mobile More Submit  Join Login


Depression is My Heritage 9/21/06

Iíve known there was something different about my family for a long time.  When I was five, I had to go visit my aunt and uncle in Ohio for two weeks.  At the time, I really wasnít sure what was going on, only that mommy needed some time to rest after my baby brother got back from a ten day stay at the hospital and major surgery.  For years I never really understood why my mother would do things, or go to see ďfriendsĒ that I never got to see.  Only recently have I learned the true reason that lay behind all of these events, as well as other personalities in my motherís family.

My motherís depression started in high school, and got worse in college.  She didnít seek help because of the stigmas that surrounded mental illness at the time.  Instead she pushed on, ignoring the occasional ďspellsĒ she would have.  She made it through college, and marriage with only comparatively minor episodes.  After the birth of her first child, however, she was taken by a severe case of postpartum depression.  She tried to talk to her own mother, but my grandmother refused to believe there was a problem, sighting multiple other factors as the source of my motherís unhappiness.  After much though, however, my mother told her doctor what had happened.  After the birth of her second child they were ready to help when the second bout of postpartum depression hit.  My mother made it through until my brother was rushed to UVA medical center, fighting for his life.  At eleven months old he underwent major surgery to correct a telescoping of his small intestines into his large as the result of an infection.  For ten days she stayed in the hospital with my brother.  When she got home she crashed.  Her doctor insisted she do something.  So, I was sent away while they tried a barrage of medications, and found her a counselor.  The two weeks I was away was just enough to get her on her feet; it actually took five years to find a combination that really worked for her.  Over the years she has continued to go see her ďfriend,Ē who also happened to be her counselor.

During this time, my grandmother found out about what was happening.  She was not pleased, to say the least.  Her generation had always been told that if you worked hard enough, things would be alright, and that mental illness was in truth either mental weakness, or the fault of the parents for not raising their child correctly.  She didnít associate it with a chemical imbalance.  Though she was very uncomfortable doing so, my mother decided to talk openly with my grandmother about what she was going through, and what the doctors and the medicine were doing to help her.  The more my mother talked with her, however, the more she came to realize that not only had my grandmother lived with depression most of her life, my great-grandmother had as well.  It took my mother and her brother a long time to coax her to try some medicine of her own.

While my grandmother was struggling with the decision of whether or not to go to a doctor about her depression, my only female cousin started showing signs of depression as well.  Her father, who is a child psychologist, knew the signs and got her treated while she was still in high school.  When she went to college, however, she stopped taking her medicine for whatever reason.  She did alright for a while, but then things started catching up with her.  In the end she had to leave school for a year to get her condition under control.  Her problems had a profound affect on her choice of studies, and she switched majors so that she will now become a school psychologist.  I also think that she might have helped my grandmother decide that taking medicine was alright, and that it wasnít admitting weakness.

My mother told me that the hardest thing about depression for her was think that it was somehow her own fault, or that if she just worked a little harder that everything would be alright.  It took a long time for her, and even longer for my grandmother, to except that the problem wasnít with the person, but with the receptors in the brain.  They were not exposed to such ideas as young people, and so the idea that the problem was biological rather than purely psychological was something that they had to learn.  My cousin and I are fortunate that we have grown up in a time when the brain is being understood and explored more each day.  Hopefully I will never need medication as I have yet to experience the symptoms of depression, but if I ever do, Iíll know that I can take it without fear of what other people think.  It is easier to accept help when you know that the problem isnít your fault.













Due: 9/21/06
First Two Page Essay on a Topic of Personal Interest
This is a very personal piece, as it is describing something that has been affecting the females of my mother's family for generations. I'm putting this here because I rather like it.

Yes, this is a piece for college, but it would be utterly pointless to steal because it is totally biographical to me and my family. What I'd really like are some critiques on the style/structure/etc.
Add a Comment:
 
:iconpaladin343:
Paladin343 Featured By Owner Nov 23, 2006  Hobbyist General Artist
Depression sucks, from whatever perspective--that of sufferer or family/friend of sufferer.

But it's still so bad because of the stigma and the myths, that "zomg she takes pills for DEPRESSION" or "...hey, since you have depression, does that mean you always try to kill yourself?"

It's annoying.
Reply
:iconkuroinami:
kuroinami Featured By Owner Nov 24, 2006  Hobbyist Writer
I know. It is really sad.
Reply
:icondumahdie:
dumahdie Featured By Owner Sep 30, 2006  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
I believe I suffer from depression on and off. But I'm such a loner, I never talk to my mother or anyone else about it...((not that I really "talk" to my mother at all about anything)) I figure it's my problem, I don't need anyone's opinion on the matter. Plus, I don't want to take medication because of the off-chance I may overdose, on purpose or not. I tend to forget things, and just take medicine when I feel like it. I never take painkillers except for cramps for those five days...you know...xD;; Because I get headaches a lot, and painkillers never seem to make them go away, I've gained the belief that medicine doesn't work and that things should just happen naturally ((like I should take a nap if it's really a bad one >_o)). Maybe that's a mistake and I'll crack one day, but hey! You never know. :) I could get in a car accident and die tomorrow, and I wouldn't have to worry about anything anymore. Bad thought...which might be why I'm phobic of driving too...I'm sixteen and don't have my permit, nor do I want it...unlike other people who are dying to get their license and such...

Gah! Ranting comment, too much said. Oh well. Excellent writing; nothing else I can say about it.
Reply
:iconkuroinami:
kuroinami Featured By Owner Sep 30, 2006  Hobbyist Writer
O.o Wow..that was one heck of a stream of consciousness...

Um, depression. Yeah, I get depressed around my period..but I treat my own symptoms with tea and..actually more stream of consciousness stuff. I actually do a lot of good writing around that time of the month, so I guess it evens out.

Get your license when you feel ready and not before.

And thank you^^;
Reply
:icondumahdie:
dumahdie Featured By Owner Oct 1, 2006  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
It happens sometimes ^^; i ramble about nonesense.

i get depressed around the full and new moon...for reasons you should know, lol. kairo vanishes x_X

i will -^__^- you're always welcome :D
Reply
:iconkuroinami:
kuroinami Featured By Owner Oct 1, 2006  Hobbyist Writer
Hai, well, I do as well, so I guess we are even.

lol, silly kitty. Which reminds me, is he doing any better?
Reply
:icondumahdie:
dumahdie Featured By Owner Oct 1, 2006  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
yes, much better -^__^- he's actually been awake all day, cep when i was reading my book and he was bored. i bit his ear the other day, mwahahaha! only not hard...i think i actually missed it. but he did laugh at me and then we were tickling each other and yeah... ^^; it was fun :D
Reply
:iconkuroinami:
kuroinami Featured By Owner Oct 1, 2006  Hobbyist Writer
lol, cool, I'm glad he's feeling better. Do you know what was making him feel sick?
Reply
:icondumahdie:
dumahdie Featured By Owner Oct 1, 2006  Hobbyist Traditional Artist
i think it's just that he's connected to my Memory series really strongly...and since he was weakened in the story, he was tired a lot... that's my excuse anyway. otherwise, i have no idea why, and neither does he.
Reply
:iconkuroinami:
kuroinami Featured By Owner Oct 1, 2006  Hobbyist Writer
Huh..I hope Morian isn't trying anything in real life...
Reply
(1 Reply)
:iconelmanta:
ElManta Featured By Owner Sep 30, 2006
oook...weird family...but well written...depressions are like all other feelings for me, impulsive, bursting and violent, but they always pass, in time....so maybe just try to have fun, live your life, and not think about it?
Reply
:iconkuroinami:
kuroinami Featured By Owner Sep 30, 2006  Hobbyist Writer
Ah..thats the problem with the depression that runs in my family. It doesn't just go away. It lingers and continues to hurt for a long, long time.
Reply
:iconelmanta:
ElManta Featured By Owner Oct 1, 2006
I think you gonna have a problem...
Reply
:iconkuroinami:
kuroinami Featured By Owner Oct 1, 2006  Hobbyist Writer
Nah, I'll be fine.
Reply
:iconelmanta:
ElManta Featured By Owner Oct 2, 2006
you sure?
Reply
:iconkuroinami:
kuroinami Featured By Owner Oct 2, 2006  Hobbyist Writer
Yeah, I'm sure.
Reply
:iconelmanta:
ElManta Featured By Owner Oct 21, 2006
good^^
Reply
:iconelmanta:
ElManta Featured By Owner Oct 2, 2006
you sure?
Reply
:iconanareincarnation:
AnaReincarnation Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2006
I thought the structure and grammar was alright, although I wasn't really looking for style. More for content, because I am personally associated with depression in my life, and in others. And... ... I could go without, to be sure.
But I will mention that the lesson at the end that you tell to the audience is a good thing (we've been having to do narratives in school, and they all need to teach a lesson. once we get ours back, anyways, I'll post it. *has been waiting an eternity*)
Reply
:iconkuroinami:
kuroinami Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2006  Hobbyist Writer
Well, I'm glad that you liked the paper if not the topic. Thank you for your input!
Reply
:iconplatinummyr:
platinummyr Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2006  Hobbyist Writer
yah.... depression is hard. I have friends who are depressed. But, I think it can be a psychological thing only, in some cases. Either way, I believe more in the power of prayer.
Reply
:iconkuroinami:
kuroinami Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2006  Hobbyist Writer
Yes, I do think that it is sometimes psychological. I do know, however, in my familiy it is because of how receptors in the brain don't work quite correctly that it is passed through the generations.

Prayer works.
Reply
:iconplatinummyr:
platinummyr Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2006  Hobbyist Writer
yah... :(
Reply
:iconkuroinami:
kuroinami Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2006  Hobbyist Writer
:hug:
Reply
:iconsynthwrr:
synthwrr Featured By Owner Sep 21, 2006
I feel terrible about this topic, but I think it's really important to think about-- at least for me it is. I have a really close friend who suffers intense depression; she was going through a really rough time, with actual self-mutilation going on, and I wasn't there for her because I believed, like your grandma did, that she should deal with it herself, and that her use of medication was something she shouldn't resort to (especially since it apparently wasn't working). The reason I believed that was I had suffered intense depression myself, and I never even recognized it as such until I met her-- and when I did, I really thought it was weakness in her.

Also, I believe that depression is both a curse and a blessing, because depression is the birth of inspiration. But that's a different story, and I have to go now...
Reply
:iconkuroinami:
kuroinami Featured By Owner Sep 22, 2006  Hobbyist Writer
No one wants to be depressed, its not something pleasant in the least. It is the unfortunate fate of some, though, to have a chemical inbalance. I would encourage people to seek help; no one should have to "just live with it."

I know that depression can inspire. On a related note, if you haven't read The Death Song, then you might not want to. The character in it is extreemely depressed.
Reply
:iconsynthwrr:
synthwrr Featured By Owner Sep 23, 2006
I thank God (whether or not he exists is not the issue) for all the ways I am different and cursed, because without those things I wouldn't be the person I am, and I wouldn't have the opportunites for knowledge and, in fact, thought in the ways I do. I've often questioned why exactly it is that I question-- an interesting sort of near-parodox-- and I've decided that if what I've gone through is the reason I've ended up this way (rather than like others I know), then it's well worth it.

Yes, that includes depression.
Reply
:iconkuroinami:
kuroinami Featured By Owner Sep 23, 2006  Hobbyist Writer
I know what you are saying. I do happen to believe in God, and it is my belief that we were created the way we are for a reason, as a part of his master plan. Tis a much better thought than that things happen to us as an effect of random chance. I know that I would not be the person I am today without my mother, her depression and all.
Reply
:iconsynthwrr:
synthwrr Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2006
heh. To complete my wierdness, I believe that time is solid. Like everything that has happened, is happening, and will happen-- in a way-- is already done. In fact, mathematics tells us that this is so-- mathematics proves fate exists. It's not really fate per se though, because it's not controlled exactly-- just unchangable.

It lends me an acceptant attitude about stuff...
Reply
:iconkuroinami:
kuroinami Featured By Owner Sep 24, 2006  Hobbyist Writer
That actually relates to how I view God and time. To me He is outside of time. Therefore He just is and that is how He never had a beginning, is omnipresent, etc. He's outside of time. Or rather, time is an illusion that we here on earth cannot break free from.
Reply
:iconsynthwrr:
synthwrr Featured By Owner Sep 25, 2006
Yeah, something like that.

I also happen to believe that God is an entity which exists only within the minds of humanity... did I mention that already?
Reply
:iconkuroinami:
kuroinami Featured By Owner Sep 25, 2006  Hobbyist Writer
Aye.

And nope.
Reply
:iconss4sascha:
ss4sascha Featured By Owner Sep 21, 2006
to your room.
Reply
:iconkuroinami:
kuroinami Featured By Owner Sep 21, 2006  Hobbyist Writer
What?
Reply
Add a Comment:
 
×

:iconkuroinami: More from kuroinami


More from DeviantArt



Details

Submitted on
September 20, 2006
File Size
5.2 KB
Link
Thumb

Stats

Views
245
Favourites
3 (who?)
Comments
40
×