UCLU’s Taboo Week ought to get people thinking
Depression is a word that we are all used to. In fact, “I’m feeling a bit depressed” is a statement that we all hear or say from time to time, without really thinking about it.
So is talking about depression really a taboo? The increased use of the word in everyday conversation would suggest not. However, perhaps through this increased citing of depression in a day to day context, the meaning of the word is changing. It can be easy to see depression as something that isn’t serious, as something that we all experience when we just haven’t had enough sleep. But this is a naïve view.
Because, whilst depression is talked about in general conversation, true depression isn’t. Yes, we all feel a bit depressed some days. Faced with a looming deadline, we all want to crawl under the covers and hide. But some people feel like that a lot of the time, and they can’t escape it. And more people experience it than you may think.
One in four people will experience some kind of mental health problem this year, with mixed anxiety and depression being the most common mental disorders. So why are we incapable of engaging with the true medical issue that is depression? Why, when we think of depression, do we tend to think of that person who is “just a bit depressed” rather than thinking of depression the illness, the true meaning of the word.
Depression is going to have to be something that we all face as a reality. With the increasingly pressurised world that we live in, where we get no break, no time alone to think, and are constantly given ways to compare ourselves to others, depression is only going to increase. So take advantage of the information out there. Make yourself aware. Don’t let it be a taboo.