Mom says depression runs in my family. I didn’t know!
The symptoms of depression are sleeping a lot, avoiding taking care of business (not opening your mail, etc.) avoiding daily life in general. Getting panic attacks, and generally not being able to cope. Of course, those people who have these symptoms can’t get themselves to the doctor for help, so they need people around them to help them. [A relative] has been off work on “stress Leave” it seems every year. She works as a teacher’s assistant. She doesn’t even go home to her house, she lives on her sailboat, because she doesn’t want to answer the phone, or open her mail. She ends up in a big mess because of this, then has to cope with even bigger problems. She is on a medication to help her now, but school is already out, so she won’t be going back to work until next fall. We hope she gets better. [Another relative] is quite bad, but being of the generation that doesn’t even recognize depression, she just carries on best she can. She doesn’t change her clothes or wash her hair, but that could be said of a lot of older people. She also sleeps a lot, especially when they lived here. It didn’t matter what time of day you called them, they were napping. They slept in front of the TV as well…She is a lot more active since they moved to the retirement center, lots to do there, and they have to come out of their rooms for meals, and tea-time and coffee-time. She even plays bingo in the mornings. [Yet another relative] has panic attacks, and gets stressed out easily, I have to be careful what I say. He has been much better this past year, but he still cops out and disappears to the local old-mens’ club, i.e. the Legion, every day. So much for that, keep your chin up, but don’t hesitate to ask questions of your doctor if you feel blue for long periods of time. Sometimes counselling helps and you don’t need medication.
Well, I don’t feel blue for long periods of time (just after I get dumped). I never get panic attacks. I do avoid opening my mail sometimes, but only for a few days (typically these are bills). I often ignore emails but only if they require long indepth replies, or replies that involve answers that I don’t have. However, I do have a distinct lack of ambition and distinct antisocial tendencies. I cannot schmooze worth a damn. I do absolutely loathe anything that has to do with bureaucracy and paperwork, i.e. taxes. I just let my driver’s license expire and I am loathe to think about the hoops I’m going to have to jump through, i.e. leaving the house and waiting in line. Filling out forms of any kind doesn’t agree with me. I hate the telephone, and use it as little as possible. But I am emailing people constantly. So who knows what’s going on in my brain. Not me.