Trevor Noah: Jim Carrey helped me deal with depression

Trevor Noah says comedian Jim Carrey helped him come to terms with his depression.The Daily Show host revealed that he never even knew he suffered from the mental illness until he heard his comedic hero discussing his own struggles and it helped him to understand his conflicted feelings.Speaking at the Just For Laughs comedy festival in Montreal, he said: “You can’t win at comedy. Every comedian knows, you’re going to have your good days, you’re going to have your bad days but you don’t win. Winning is getting to the end without committing suicide, and Jim Carrey was one of the first comedians that described the beast that many of us face in this room and that’s depression.

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Aleksandra Stone Photography – Depression Self Portrait

After being diagnosed with general anxiety disorder, photographer Aleksandra Stone actually welcomed her depression diagnosis. Once she understood the full scope of her condition, she felt more secure in her feelings.”Almost instantaneously, I felt an overwhelming sense of relief, because I could finally put a name to the problem,” she tells Refinery29. “Finally, I understood that my thoughts and moods were symptoms, and within my reach were means to alleviate them.”

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Imade Nibokun “Depressed While Black” Interview

Our society hasn’t exactly made it easy on those with mental illnesses. But as Imade Nibokun explains in the latest video for Project UROK, people of color face unique challenges in getting help for mental health issues.

“Depression was something that was hovering in the background that I just got use to,” Nibokun says. “[It was] almost like a pair of shoes that you wear in.” She found herself in grad school racing along the highway “wanting to die,” which made her realize that she needed to get help.

On her blog, Depressed While Black, Nibokun writes about the particular stigmas and barriers to care for people of color with mental illnesses. “Growing up I thought depression was a ‘white person disease,'” Nibokun explains in the video, “that depression is just not something that we do as Black people… I really had to learn that I am worth the care.”

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I am depressed and I have decided to get help – John Woodcock MP | UK news | theguardian.com

When I fell off my attic ladder last year and ended up in hospital, it was the latest in a string of physical mishaps that led some of my friends to call me parliament’s Mr Bump.

First I had done in my knee running for a vote and ended up on crutches. Then I was assaulted on a train in a way that was not in truth very serious but people imagined was painful, particularly when a CCTV image of my rather well-built assailant was released to the media.

All of this was a bit embarrassing but nothing to hide away or be ashamed of. Hell, I even agreed to let my local paper, the North-West Evening Mail, come and take a picture of me in hospital after my ladder escapade.

via I am depressed and I have decided to get help – John Woodcock MP | UK news | theguardian.com.

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Reflections on Depression

How it feels

The Bridesmaid by Sir John Everett Millais

Note: Quotes in italics are mine.

I tell people it’s like being dead. It feels like being a ghost, maybe. You float through your days feeling insubstantial, cut off from warmth, light and all feeling. Sometimes it feels like you’re in a coffin buried alive. You’re screaming inside your head, but no one can hear you.

“It was not really alarming at first, since the change was subtle, but I did notice that my surroundings took on a different tone at certain times: the shadows of nightfall seemed more somber, my mornings were less buoyant, walks in the woods became less zestful, and there was a moment during my working hours in the late afternoon when a kind of panic and anxiety overtook me…” – William Styron, Darkness Visible

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What does depression feel like?

Image: Dolce Far Niente by John William Godward
Dolce Far Niente by John William Godward

“It was not really alarming at first, since the change was subtle, but I did notice that my surroundings took on a different tone at certain times: the shadows of nightfall seemed more somber, my mornings were less buoyant, walks in the woods became less zestful, and there was a moment during my working hours in the late afternoon when a kind of panic and anxiety overtook me…” – William Styron, Darkness Visible

Sometimes the Depression Self-Screening Tests are just too clinical, and the symptoms don’t really “click” with you. Some of the criteria are general, and if you’re suffering from depression, specifics are easier to understand.

I know that I might not have diagnosed myself with depression just on the basis of those symptoms. I had no change in appetite, and no sleep problems (getting out of bed was what was difficult). Below are some un-clinical symptoms.

    • Things just seem “off” or “wrong.”
    • You don’t feel hopeful or happy about anything in your life.
    • You’re crying a lot for no apparent reason, either at nothing, or something that normally would be insignificant.
    • You feel like you’re moving (and thinking) in slow motion.
    • Getting up in the morning requires a lot of effort.
    • Carrying on a normal conversation is a struggle. You can’t seem to express yourself.
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    What’s wrong with calling depression “madness”?

    “Our perhaps understandable modern need to dull the sawtooth edges of so many of the afflictions we are heir to has led us to banish the harsh old-fashioned words: madhouse, asylum, insanity, melancholia, lunatic, madness. But never let it be doubted that depression in its extreme form is madness.” – William Styron, Darkness Visible: A Memoir of Madness

    Boreas by John William Waterhouse
    Boreas by John William Waterhouse

    What is wrong with using the word “madness” in relation to depression? I ask because over the years I have received several indignant emails from people insisting that I stop using the word in the title of this website. According to them, I’m adding to the stigma surrounding mental illness and am being politically incorrect to the extreme.

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    Depression: My Story (VIDEO)

    Hi everybody. Cara Santa Maria here. As we’ve been discussing mental health this month, I’ve read some pretty cynical comments on my blog posts about how people with depression should “just get over it.” About how “we all get sad sometimes and it’s hard to deal…what makes you so special?” Well, for anybody watching who feels that way, I have to tell you: depression is a brain illness. It is caused by a combination of genetic, biological, environmental, and psychological factors.

    Read on.

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