What does depression look like? Does she have a face? Can you pick her out of a crowd? Does she have defined features? Depression looks like me and I call her she…written while in one of my depressed stupors.
I always wondered why black people associated therapy with being crazy or a sign of weakness. People in general, but I speak from the black perspective because well, I’m black. Growing up I always heard, you don’t need therapy when you can talk to Jesus! Don’t get me wrong, you can talk to God through prayer, but problem was, I didn’t know how to do that. I needed someone to talk back. Someone to tell me that I wasn’t crazy.
I need folks to be realistic about depression, stress, anxiety, and mental illness. I was a worrier as a youngster. I worried about my grades. I worried about fitting in. I worried about being black enough, my sexuality, and dying. Because I didn’t know how to deal, I learned to mask. I smoked copious amounts of weed. I drank. I was promiscuous. None of it helped, it only left me feeling worse, and more empty. You see, therapy was for the crazies, and I didn’t know how to talk to God.
These demons followed me into my adulthood, but the changed form. Worrying, smoking, drinking, and sleeping around turned into panic attacks. Laying in bed for days without eating. Clinching my jaw. Neglecting my hair. It turned into anger. I knew when thoughts of killing my self and others became a daily occurrence, I had to do something different.
I learned more about therapy through my employer at the time and because nothing else was working, I went. I was now late into my 20’s and now a mother of 4 small children. I had to go through a few therapists before finding one that fit. I was looking for the tv portrayed office with the couch to lie down on and spill my guts and I did. She wasn’t a relative. I didn’t have to censor my words. I couldn’t hurt her feelings.
I still see a therapist, and surprise…I’m not crazy! This is my experience. If you’re not coping well. If you feel like you’re going crazy. If you can’t deal with a loss, a failed relationship, stress at work, parenting…therapy works! Combine it with prayer, with meditation. Let it lead you to healing.
Until next time…❤️