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Be Merry This Christmas



Straight Talk
By Nimfa L. Estrellado

I love Christmas. I love the music. I love the lights. As a Christian, I love what it stands for. However, as someone who also lives with depression, Christmas and the holiday season can be especially hard for me. I lost my dad two years ago. So I’ll often find myself missing him around this time of year as well.

“I’m so sorry, Dad. It shouldn’t be like this, you know? I wish you were here. I miss you.”

Those were seemingly the only words I could get out, in what seemed like an avalanche of emotions suddenly crashing over me. Depression seemingly magnifies loss. It would like to have you believe that you will always feel sad and nothing will ever change.

Please, don’t listen to depression’s lies. Please, know everything will be OK. You matter and you are loved.

I’m fortunate to be spending this holiday with family and to be able to count all the blessings I have. When depression seemingly hits out of nowhere, I won’t feel ashamed to feel whatever I am feeling. I’ll be open and honest about my feelings and share them with someone I trust.

While there are many forms and levels of severity in depression, one thing is for sure. Depression causes negative effects on the way a person lives, the way a person is perceived, and the stability of their well being. But, what are some signs that a person you love, or maybe even yourself, is suffering from depression? There are many things that you can look for. Some basic things are listed here.

Does the person seem withdrawn from their normal activities?

Do they seem unhappy with things that have made them happy before?

Do they stay home rather than do something that they once considered fun?

Does the person seem to be pulling away from close friends and relatives?

Does the person feel isolated, hurt, and alone?

There are many other things that you can look for in individuals who may be experiencing depression. The most important thing that you can do is to talk to them, get them to talk to someone they can trust, or to see their doctor. If you would like additional information on avoiding depression and recognizing its signs, you can visit websites like www.avoiddepression.com . While it is not a medical siteFree Articles, it can offer ideas on what depression is and how to avoid its effects.

It’s a myth that suicide is more common around the holidays (springtime is actually the peak). But holiday cheer isn’t a given either.

High expectations, money woes, and other holiday hazards can spell trouble for anyone, but especially those prone to depression.

With a bit of foresight and planning, however, holidays can leave you feeling up, not down. Follow these tips for a successful holiday.

Spend some time figuring out how to take care of yourself during this time. Come up with restorative routines, such as reading a book or napping, and write them on a calendar. In between shopping and baking, make sure these routines don’t fall by the wayside.

There are a couple ways to save your sanity at family gatherings.

If you know there are going to be conflicts, prepare a neutral response, such as, “Let’s talk about that another time,” or, “I can see how you would feel that way.”

Then escape to the restroom, offer to help in the kitchen, or go hang out with the kids. And it always helps to call a good friend if you need a sympathetic ear.

If you’re dealing with depression this holiday season, then please, know you are not alone. You might feel lonely, but you are never alone. Reach out and get help. Know that no matter what depression would like to have you believe, it’s simply not true. Depression is a serious issue. There are simply hundreds of thousands of people who deal with depression on a daily basis. Are you one of them? Do you know someone that may be? How can you recognize the signs of depression? How can you help someone who may be facing depression within their lives?

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