The recent news of both Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain’s death by suicide has been on my mind a lot lately. I know that there is probably not much more that I can say which hasn’t already been said, tweeted, posted, or written about in an article.
Regardless, this is my version of what I have to say…
I’d be a liar to admit that I haven’t faced my own moments, even extended periods, of depression. Honestly, there are still days when I’m not 100% okay. The only difference is that now, I’ve learned how to cope better.
However, during those times in my past, whenever I was in my pit of depression, I’d typically isolate myself off from the world — from my friends, from my family, from any of my loved ones.
I did so because I always thought, “Who would want to hear me complain about my life?”
Why would anyone want to talk to someone who is sad?
Why would anyone want to be around someone who is sad?
So, I stayed away from people until I was “feeling better”. And if I did have to actually face people, I would just put a smile on for show, pretend like all was fine and dandy, and then return to my state of depression — in silence.
But, there’s a problem with this — We shouldn’t have to suffer in silence.
We shouldn’t feel like we’re inconveniencing someone by telling them what’s wrong. We shouldn’t feel like a burden. We shouldn’t feel like we can’t be around people. We shouldn’t feel ashamed.
We need to remove the stigma that depression is just a “passing phase”. We need to stop telling people to “suck it up” when they do open up to us because we never really know how badly someone may have it.
A lack of empathy towards someone in depression could very well be the thing that puts them over the edge.
I know now that if I am feeling like I’m back in that awful pit, that I need to talk to someone — to a friend, a family member, a loved one. I need let it out. I need to let people know.
And in the same respect, we need to check in on our loved ones and make sure that they are really okay.
You should never assume that everyone you know is doing okay.
Sometimes, the less we speak, the more. Sometimes, those who are the most quiet have the loudest thoughts. Sometimes, those who act like everything is okay are the ones who are hurting the most.
And if we suspect that there is someone we know who is suffering, we need to either provide aid or seek out aid to offer.
The tragic deaths of Kate Spade and Anthony Bourdain are a reminder to all of us that not everything is as it seems. You may never know really know what’s going on inside someone else’s head until it’s too late.