Earlier tonight, the news of Robin Williams’ death hit the internet. Amidst the hope that this was yet another hoax news story was the murmur that maybe Robin’s death was a suicide.
Hoax? No. Suicide? Yes.
Twitter is flooded with recommendations of where to get help if you, too, struggle with depression. My view of Facebook is peppered with people’s bewildered reaction to this death. And I’m here on the sofa with my kitty, Leeloo, thinking about how we today respond to depression and suicide.
@TheBloggess: It only take a moment to lose the war with depression. Be vigilant. Be brave. You do not fight alone. We’re here. #depressionlies
Jenny’s very frank blogs about her struggles with depression and anxiety have helped me a lot, in that they give me something I can show to Bones and say, “Here. It’s like this.” And I am, frankly, lucky as hell that he listens, he doesn’t judge, and even when I describe what it’s been like at its very worst, he doesn’t judge me.
Which sounds like an obvious. Of course he doesn’t judge. He loves me. But I dated someone whose response to my depression – when I was really struggling and fully planning on going to bed and staying there for a few days – his response was, “Yeah. Why don’t you do that?” So I did. For the rest of the week.
Surprisingly, that wasn’t the incident that led to him being an ex boyfriend. Yaaaay depression.
Wil Wheaton has been resharing his blogs about depression – one is here – and has added his voice to the choir of people saying yes, we need to talk about depression.
It was only a few years ago that a friend of mine cautioned me about openly writing about depression. She thought it would hurt my chances at finding a job. “I wouldn’t hire you if I saw that,” she told me.
I’m pleased to say that she was wrong. I was hired as a temp, I told my boss about my anxiety disorder and my depression, and not only did that boss help me find someone to talk to, she also advocated hard to get me hired on full time.
I hope that we are learning better how to talk about depression, and how to respond to depression..that we are figuring out suicide is not cowardly and it’s not weak, it’s the action of someone that is tired of struggling with the things Life throws at a person. If you’ve never been that tired, I’m so very glad. I wouldn’t wish that feeling on anyone.
I’m thinking of Robin with love and sorrow tonight. I’m sorry he fell to that feeling of Done. It only takes a moment of Done for depression to ‘win.’
ETA: One resource not getting a lot of airtime but I think is worth sharing: http://www.7cupsoftea.com
Need someone to listen? Try there.