Last Blog: Be The Change

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We knew our campaign was short but we tried our best to raise awareness about depression in order to support fellow college and university students suffering from it. We also wanted to educate their families and friends as well as provide them with tools and resources, which would help them, recognize and support the humans of depression around them.

We tried to lower our own walls by letting you in on some of our personal stories and takes on depression. We hope that it helped you connect with our blog as well as assured the humans of depression out there, that you are not alone. Despite the statistics and numbers proving that depression is indeed everywhere, we hope we have put a face to the statistics through these personal stories.

Depression affects our social and physical well-being; it takes a toll on sufferers of it as well as those surrounding them. Each one of us can do something to help. Our hope is that our posts may have inspired you to better understand depression and that this knowledge will encourage you to help yourself and others. We also hope this campaign motivated you to be a change agent yourself, in an effort to break the stigma and induce empathy within ourselves, to be part of the solution.

It was a wonderful journey, which taught each one of us more than we thought, hopefully as much as it taught you. We have connected with some of you and it has been a pleasure to feel that our messages were appreciated and found to be familiar. Thank you to all of you who have participated in this campaign. We hope you found it educational, motivational and empowering as we intended it to be.

Our final thoughts to you are:

  • Look out for your happiness and hold on to it because you deserve to be happy.
  • Start each day a new and ask for help because there are many waiting to help you.
  • Have faith in yourself and in time because healing will happen but it takes time.

Sincerely,

Humans of Depression representatives

#LetsTalkD #BeTheChange

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Youth, Technology And Depression

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Since I became computer savvy and started using it, this opened vistas of knowledge to me but simultaneously I start thinking that this is taking me away from the social interactions, which remained part and parcel of human being since the time immemorial. I always contemplated that the generation which is growing up now particularly after 1990’s, may not be able to inculcate the feeling of closeness we have with our relatives, peers etc.

In my curiosity I found a article which says that in which study from Sweden concluded its result as ” in young women, high combined use of computer and mobile phone at baseline was associated with increased risk of reporting prolonged stress and symptoms of depression at follow-up, and number of short message service (SMS) messages per day was associated with prolonged stress. Also online chatting was associated with prolonged stress, and e-mailing and online chatting were associated with symptoms of depression, while Internet surfing increased the risk of developing sleep disturbances. And for young men, number of mobile phone calls and SMS messages per day were associated with sleep disturbances. SMS use was also associated with symptoms of depression. The findings suggest that “Internet and Communication Technology” may have an impact on psychological health, although causal mechanisms are unclear”. (Sara Thomée, 2007).

Thus I found a research which took me further in my thought with concrete results depicting how this technology is taking away not only from social interactions but also leading to more complex psychological problems. My further quest in this area led me in finding another piece of literature with the caption of “Technology Leads to Anxiety and Depression” which  shows basically that being on facebook for a long time could cause depression. Also people get depressed because they stress things they can’t control for example internet not working , phone frozen , etc. Another reason that technology could cause depression because every time a brand new a piece of technology comes out the people have to learn how to use it. Also because some people feel kind of stupid when new technology comes out. According to Dr. Stephen Westmoreland, a Psychologist in Tyler who says, “even with new technology to make life easier, stress has sky rocketed over the years.”  because when everyone gets a new technology they have to go through a tutorial of how to use it and not knowing how to use something you own could become stressful and cause depression. (Shamoon, 2009)

From all the information I learned that technology got its positive and negatives sides. The positive thing is advancing how we do things now  days, but the negatives are that its stressful situations which sometimes comes and which we don’t realize. Computer savvy youth must remain aware of these unforeseen consequences and must recognize the importance of real social interactions, which are innate part of human nature.

Ref:

Sara Thomée, M. E. (2007, May). Prevalnce of precieved stress, symptoms of depression and sleep disturbances in relation to information and communication technology use amongyoung adults. Computers in Human Behavior, 23(3), Pages 1300-132.

Shamoon, E. (2009, February 4). Technology leads to anxiety and depression. Retrieved from engadget: http://www.switched.com/2009/02/04/technology-leads-to-anxiety-and-depression-studies-show/

#LetsTalkD#Youth#Depression#Technology#Internet

A Personal Story Dealing With Depression & Self Identifying as Gay

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“I came out to my parents about my sexuality at the age of 16. To say the least, they did not take it well, nor were they supportive of who I really was. They thought it was not normal, that I was going through a phase, and if I continued to identify myself as ‘gay’, then I would live a life full of suffering and people looking down on me. I felt betrayed and hurt. Their words really hit me hard, because I was their son, someone they were supposed to love and support unconditionally. If my own parents do not want to accept me for who I am, then who else would? My depression and anxiety got worse. I started to take drugs, suicide crossed my mind many times. I had no self-esteem and felt as if I had no self-worth. I felt hopeless. I remember thinking ‘is there something wrong with me? Why can’t I be normal like other boys and change how I feel, to make my parents accept me?’ and I tried. I hid my sexuality for a long time and let my depression turn for the worst when I overdosed on drugs to get rid of all the pain I felt. My parents found me in my room unresponsive and took me to the hospital. A few days later, I was transferred to CAMH (Centre for Addiction and Mental Health) where I was treated for my depression, anxiety and drug addiction through their Mood and Anxiety Program. I also learned about an organization called ‘The 519’ that works towards bringing LGBTQ individuals together to meet, participate and celebrate together. I decided to take a chance and attended some of their programs and met many people who were just like me and had gone through a similar situation as me. About 2 years later, with treatment, therapy and making new friends, I finally started to notice a change in myself, I finally felt accepted and safe. I finally felt normal. My parents are still not completely open to my lifestyle choices yet, but I know they will come around slowly. It really shocked them when I tried to kill myself, and they went through a lot of guilt, but now they are trying their best to understand me for who I am. I want to educate others with my experience and remind other LGBTQ youth that they are not alone, there is help out there, and it is not the end of the road.”

Dealing with depression and other mental illnesses is tough and challenging, but when an individual identifies as lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender or queer (LGBTQ), it can become much more difficult to cope when some people do not accept the for who they truly are. Many LGBTQ individuals feel alienated from others, and find themselves battling with their true identity versus the public’s perception. Sadly, many LGBTQ individuals find themselves resorting to suicide, because there does not seem to be a better option (their risk of suicide is 14 times more compared to their heterosexual peers and 20% greater for those living in unsupportive environments1,2). For those of you living with a mental illness, there is help out there- you do not have to suffer in silence. Let’s work towards creating more safe and supportive environments. Let’s talk depression.

LGBTQ- friendly Crisis Lines:

Trans Lifeline: (877) 330-6366

PFLAG Canada: 1-888-530-6777 ext 226

The Lesbian, Gay, Bi Trans Youth Line: 416-962-0777

For more information about ‘The 519’ click here : http://www.the519.org/index.php

For additional resources, help and support, visit: http://www.camh.ca/en/hospital/Pages/home.aspx

~Joti, Humans of Depression Representative

Remember to follow Humans of Depression on the following platforms:

http://twitter.com/HumansofD

https://www.facebook.com/HumansofDepression

http://instagram.com/humansofdepression/

References

  1. http://rhvp.ca/lgbtq-youth-suicide/
  2. http://ontario.cmha.ca/mental-health/lesbian-gay-bisexual-trans-people-and-mental-health/

Depression in Men

Depression is not a gender specific disorder. All genders can relate to depression. Today, focus of discussion is depression in men. Men commonly have feelings of irritability, anger and discouragement 1. Male depression often undiagnosed because of failure to recognize symptoms, reluctance to discuss and often downplay their symptoms3. Men are more likely to complete suicide. Jack Windeler was a Queen University student, who had battled with mental illness2. He was a victim depression. He struggled to maintain academics, go to classes and eventually isolated himself 2. Unfortunately, his worsening depression was unnoticed and Jack committed suicide in March 20102. In memory of Jack, the Jack Project was founded to provide a youth help line aimed to decrease stigma associated with mental health and promote mental wellness2. The Jack Project become Jack.org is truly an inspiring charity, sustaining youth leadership and breaking the silence on mental health discussion. Visit the following link to learn more about program and initiatives.

http://www.jack.org/current-initiatives-and-programs

~Vanessa, Humans of Depression Representative

Remember to follow Humans of Depression on the following platforms and support #LetsTalkD:

https://twitter.com/HumansofD

https://www.facebook.com/HumansofDepression

http://instagram.com/humansofdepression/

Reference

  1. CAMH (2008). Depression. Retrieved from

http://www.camh.ca/en/hospital/health_information/a_z_mental_health_and_addiction_information/depression/Pages/default.aspx

  1. Jack.org (2015).Our history. Retrieved from http://www.jack.org/our-history
  2. Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research (2013). Male depression:

Understanding the issues. Retrieved from http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-

conditions/depression/in-depth/male-depression/art-20046216

Depression at Workplace

In his classic, “The Prophet,” Khalil Gibran writes: “Always you have been told that work is a curse… But I say to you that when you work you fulfill a part of earth’s furthest dream, assigned to you when that dream was born.”

Unfortunately Kahlil’s words don’t jibe with a new Australian study that found almost one in six cases of depression among working people caused by job stress, that nearly one in five (17 percent) working women suffering from depression attribute their condition to job stress and more than one in eight (13 percent) working men do the same. In the last decade, the number of American workers that say job stress is a major problem in their lives has doubled. In fact, the US Department of Health reported that 70 percent of physical and mental complaints at work are related to stress. Depression ranks among the top three work problems for employee assistance professionals, following only family crisis and stress. A study says in Canada10% of  workforce or 1.4 million people suffer from depression and only 6.5% of those or about 187,500 get appropriate treatment

Depression is one of the most costly health conditions for American employers. Nearly 63% of the $83 billion in total economic costs (including both direct costs of healthcare services and indirect financial costs) associated with depression annually are due to workplace losses. Depression is associated with more than $44 billion per year in lost productivity in the workplace from both absenteeism (workers with depression lose approximately 2.3 days of work per month) and “presenteeism” (workers with depression are often not able to accomplish as many tasks or perform at as high a level as workers without depression).

A huge pile of unfinished work is not the main reason why employees become depressed, concludes an extensive new Danish study. Surprisingly, the study indicates that a heavy workload has no effect on whether or not employees become depressed. Instead, it is the work environment and the feeling of being treated unfairly by the management that has the greatest effect on an employee’s mood.
http://www.beliefnet.com/Wellness/Health/12-Workplace-Depression-Busters

http://www.mooddisordersmanitoba.ca/

http://www.depressioncenter.org/work/depression-and-work/why-should-care/

http://sciencenordic.com/boss-not-workload-causes-workplace-depression

#LetsTalkD#Depression#Workplace#Workload#Jobstress