Surviving depression is tough enough. When you add stigma, you carry the world’s opinion on your shoulder
Don't stay silent if you're depressed. Speak out. Tell someone how you feel. Silence is deadly.
You shouldn't be ashamed, embarrassed, or scared. When depression labels a person, the stigma leads to alienation and more despair. There's the stigma that depression is the solitary agony of an unsettled mind. Depression is misunderstood as a contagious disease. There are laws that punish people who attempt suicide. Even families endure the stigma of depression through association, leading to a lack of family support. If we want to break the stigma, we have to be courageous and lead by example.
Talking about depression should be as easy to talk about as cancer. It took a long time to break the social taboos around cancer. People continue to be educated about cancer. There are huge support networks to help those who fight the disease. Depression needs the same public attention, sympathy, and social support networks.
Depression has a big, bad stigma but we can break it. Learn and share facts about depression. Speak up when someone says false beliefs or stereotypes about depression.
We are all courageous when we challenge the stigma of depression. What will you do to help break the stigma of depression?
Twitter: @tereziafarkas #stigma #depression #mentalhealth
* Click here to find out more about Terezia Farkas and Depression Help Free.