1. There’s a difference between sadness and depression, and though that doesn’t take away from a diagnosis, it is empowering as a distinction.
Though you may feel depressed, a person who has depression is not always a “depressed person,” in whatever way — hyperbolic or otherwise — that phrase has come to mean. I was diagnosed with clinical depression, anxiety, and obsessive tendencies when I was a teenager, but I probably exhibited symptoms of depression long before that. Still, I didn’t understand why sometimes I would just feel sad, and sometimes I’d suddenly just find everything to be entirely too much and shut off from the rest of the world at the drop of a hat. Those moments were stronger than your run-of-the-mill sadness. Slowly, you learn to distinguish what is just feeling sad and what is depression, and you begin to strategize when it comes to seeing each one through.
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