Despite the fact that over 40 million adults suffer from depression in the U.S. each year, mental health is still not treated with the same level of importance as physical health. Of course, those of us who suffer from mental health disorders understand how serious they can be and show empathy towards others with similar conditions. But to an outsider looking in, depression might be easy to mislabel as plain old sadness.
Just look at best-selling author Reno Omokri. He has practiced law, hosted his own television show, and travels the world preaching the gospel. Still, he doesn’t quite understand what it means to be depressed, which he demonstrated in a recent tweet.
This led to a deluge of replies from Twitter users who struggle with depression and want to make sure they set the record straight.
We’re sure Omokri had good intentions when he posted the tweet. Perhaps he was attempting to address people who complain about things without realizing that they have it better than most of the world. If that’s what he was talking about, fine…but that is not depression.
As long as people think depression is something that makes people sad and complain, and not a debilitating neurochemically-based mental health issue, then we won’t see any major changes in how people are treated and cared for. So, the next time you hear someone mis-categorize depression, make an effort to talk to them and help them understand that it’s not an attitude issue, but a very real health issue.