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Why do people refuse to believe that a person living with someone who has depression has a difficult time of it?  They seem to think that living with a depressed person is a piece of cake and that it shouldn’t be too difficult to balance everything. After all, someone said to me today, there aren’t any messy bandages to change.
I’m fuming!  Just because depression isn’t a disease with open sores or other visible signs of illness, doesn’t mean it is any less important debilitating? devastating?.  Depression destroys minds and families.  It severely affects the community and yet we too often continue to do nothing about it.  We ignore those families around us who are coping with it.  We dismiss teenage depression as hormones and we drive gay or lesbian young men and women to suicide.  When will we learn?
There is the saying, “Guns don’t kill people.  People kill people” but as Eddie Izzard, British comedian says, “having the gun helps.”  And the neighbors who don’t help someone with depression, the churches who turn away a family seeking help because of a depressed family member, and the politicians who shun depressed colleagues….none of these people cause the depression, but they are certainly enabling the continuation of the depression present(omit) by not helping the family, not supporting the depressed person, and most certainly by not being educated enough to know that it is an illness and not a character defect.
Everyone suffers when someone is depressed.  Let’s stop that suffering now.  Do something positive, whether that is learning more about the disease, cooking a meal for a family you know is struggling with the illness or being a friend and supportive community for everyone around us.  Don’t let depression have the upper hand because of ignorance.

Buy the Book! - Dancing in the Dark - How to Take Care of Yourself When Someone You Love is Depressed

This blog post was written by Bernadette Stankard, co-author of the book, Dancing in the Dark – How to Take Care of Yourself When Someone You Love is Depressed.