The new black?

Discussion in 'Opinions, Beliefs, & Points of View' started by ~Claire, May 15, 2010.

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  1. ~Claire

    ~Claire Well-Known Member

    Apparently depression is the new black!

    Some people are just so ignorant. And whilst I don't suffer from stress I find it hard to believe that there is 'virtually no stigma'.

    It's articles like this that piss me off :mad:.
  2. Zurkhardo

    Zurkhardo Well-Known Member

    I see why you're upset. However, I'm inclined to agree with the article to an extent: a lot of cases of Clinical Depression are spurious, and it has become something of a trend among youth to stress having some sort of 'problem.' I admit that the evidence is only anecdotal, but I don't think it's far-fetched.
  3. Reki

    Reki Well-Known Member

    Seconded. There are definitely a lot of people out there with serious problems that need and deserve all the help they can get but there are also those who scream for attention to teenage minutia that no one, victim included, is going to care about a few years from now. Dealing with problems is part of life, you either get good at it or you get swept under. Not that there aren't tons of people that have been dealt an unfair hand, that isn't what I'm saying at all, but if you're fifteen and can't get that girl you've been sweating for three years to like you then honestly just get the fuck over it and move on so the people that have cancer can get some attention.
  4. Prinnctopher's Belt

    Prinnctopher's Belt Antiquities Friend SF Supporter

    Neither did AIDS.

    Because the mechanisms of coping do not vary whatsoever from individual to individual. :rolleyes:

    You don't have depression; you just need to "get a grip, girls!" :hysterical:

    Yes, it's true that some people walk about claiming that they're in the worst torment of all time, exaggerating every single negative reaction in their lives, when overall their lives seem relatively normal compared to those with documented serious long-term mental problems. But this author's arrogant implication that people who claim they're depressed should be taken with a grain of salt, is not only intellectually irresponsible, it's just socially reprehensible.

    When someone says they're feeling depressed, regardless of whether you believe their emotional state is legitimate or not, it's better to err on the side that their emotions are not imagined, and should be taken seriously. God knows the world is cruel and degrading enough; there's reason to become depressed.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 16, 2010
  5. Prinnctopher's Belt

    Prinnctopher's Belt Antiquities Friend SF Supporter

    There's already enough ridicule surrounding depression, and the last thing people need to become preoccupied with is a fear of not being taken seriously.
  6. xan

    xan Chat Buddy

    Well this just shows the basic misunderstanding the main stream media and general population have of depression. It's not something that is affected by money and lifestyle so much... though it doesn't help to be stressed out by bills and work etc. while you are depressed. Sure there are probably some people faking it... but it's wrong to say all people who are well off can't be depressed.

    This is like saying that if you're rich and get cancer you must be faking it....
  7. Zurkhardo

    Zurkhardo Well-Known Member

    I agree. Depression stems from far deeper issues than just poverty or oppression. Personally, thought, I think a good amount of cases - namely those among younger people - are the result of inability to handle stress or muster willpower. We're more likely to wallow in our failures and insecurities than to do anything about it, spurning an endless cycle of depression.
  8. Lovecraft

    Lovecraft Well-Known Member

    It's worth pointing out here that depression is not a diagnosis, Major Depressive Disorder and dysthymia are diagnoses. What they describe as depression is dysthymia - a general tendency to be more sad than the average person all the time. Major Depressive Disorder is probably more akin to what you'd see on this forum - it is episodic, more pronounced and is also far more likely to show melancholic tendencies (even things you usually enjoy do not give you pleasure), catatonic tendencies (no energy, no initiative or motivation) and neurotic tendencies (self-hate, excessive guilt, etc.)

    As a rule I'd have to say dysthymia shouldn't be medicated. As a rule I'd say most dysthymia diagnoses are crap. I think the problem is that society no longer teaches people to have fun. We fear-monger and don't let kids do what they want to do, so they grow up repressed and too afraid because there parents and the TV only ever talk about how they'll get AIDS or cancer if they take drugs.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 16, 2010
  9. Zurkhardo

    Zurkhardo Well-Known Member

    That's good input. I find that it is very difficult to distinguish one clinical depressive disorder from another, or from any of those disorders and a regular bout of melancholy (which may have less to do with any physical or chemical irregularities in the brain and more to do with other, less biological factors).

    Making something out to be pathological or clinical only ends up entrenching in within the individual, and makes them less likely to do anything about it. I'm not saying we should do away with diagnoses because of spurious or difficult reasoning, nor that clinical depression is unfounded. I simply think much of it is exaggerated.
  10. KittyGirl

    KittyGirl Well-Known Member

    This is all very interesting...
    although I was confused at first, as why the term "____ is the new black." was used in this instance. I'd only ever heard it as a fashion term XD

    But I suppose it makes sense when talking about something that is a trend-- no, nevermind. It's just ridiculous. -_-
  11. plates

    plates Well-Known Member

    Janet Street Porter is one of those journalists that makes me switch off the TV fast, Claire. Just don't take notice of it. It's over written, self indulgent journalism by a woman I cannot stand because of her self righteousness. According to her- because she can "deal" with life events, can write crap that is passed for books about self empowerment and 'taking responsibility'- she doesn't understand why others can't! Especially if their going through serious life events, because- if you "have it all" you're supposedly immune from stress!

    It's badly written bullshit.

    I read half of it and didn't want to go further. But here is one example of her reasoning: "The poor" cannot suffer from depression, because they are poor so money+ some kind of financial security= why should you be depressed or stressed? What kinda reasoning is this?
    Last edited by a moderator: May 16, 2010
  12. ~Claire

    ~Claire Well-Known Member

    Fiona McIntosh is the founder of Grazia, a fashion magazine. I'm assuming this is why she's using a fashion term & why Janet Street Porter titled her article 'Depression? It's just the new trendy illness!'.
  13. plates

    plates Well-Known Member

    Oh come on, okay I'm reading more of it. :tongue:

    My mum's generation definitely suffered from "stress" they didn't acknowledge it, weren't allowed to express their emotions, were told to toughen up with terrible parenting, so it comes out in a ton of ways. I'd say many of my relatives are terribly depressed but it's called a smiling depression, it's called "coping with stress", it's called "willpower", rather than facing horrible real issues about how their feeling, because having any sort of emotional problem is seen as a failure, a weakness, or...a trend. I don't doubt many people are overdiagnosed with MH problems like "clinical depression", doesn't mean that they don't have serious MH problems, that stem from a lot of circumstances and those circumstances need to be addressed.

    I find the people who write these articles, or talk about 'wallowing' have SERIOUS problems with their own emotional problems and vulnerability, and what damage depression, anxiety, eating disorders, and unhappiness and suicidality can do to someone's 'willpower,' especially if you're surrounded with the mindset of people like JSP.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 16, 2010
  14. ~Claire

    ~Claire Well-Known Member

    Thanks ggg4567.
  15. plates

    plates Well-Known Member

    Says a lot doesn't it? I can't STAND her voice on tv, I read this article and can hear her bloody moaning about ABC and talking out of her arse a lot of the time from the TV or radio. :rolleyes:
  16. plates

    plates Well-Known Member

    I don't disagree with you about pathologising, but, I disagree with your reasoning that having someone's pain validated means it will 'make them less likely to do anything about it'- and for some a diagnosis such as clinical depression might validate their experience and be a starting point to explore and make sense of their experience. Having been seriously depressed- it's not the case of 'wallowing' but purely functioning/surviving on a very basic level. I know the difference between severe depression, where NONE of it was exaggerated, (there is nothing exaggerated about dying) and something milder, where there is more opportunity for one to be responsive to treatment.

    I also am curious about all this talk about 'younger people.' Is this similar to the emo categorisation? "Shut up you emo you aren't suffering." etc etc? How is this sort of thinking- not a type of pathologising, or agism? Or are the mental health problems that young people go through less serious than lets say, an older person with cancer?
    Last edited by a moderator: May 16, 2010
  17. Zurkhardo

    Zurkhardo Well-Known Member

    I know where you're coming from, and indeed for some people such a diagnosis does motivate them to seek answers and, hopefully, solutions (this very website is proof of this).

    However, many depressed people feel undoubtedly hopeless about ever "fixing" themselves because they view their depression as intrinsic. When you're told or otherwise convinced that something is pathologically ingrained in you, you may feel there is no point in fighting it given it's biological and psychological entrenchment. This is all the more dangerous when you factor in that not all cases diagnosed as "Depression" are clinical, and therefore relatively mild cases of melancholy are extrapolated as something far worse.

    Furthermore, depression is becoming a sub-culture which, like any other, seeks to manifest an identity out of the disorder. Once you turn being depressed into who you are, you're less likely to ever see yourself as anything but sad, suicidal, or hopeless.

    It's not pathologising because I'm not coming from a medical or therapeutic perspective, but as I admitted, an informally anecdotal one. Many sufferers of depression grow up with far more privilege than merits their behavior, and not just in terms of income but also opportunity and obligation. It's difficult to quantity the number of legitimate cases from dubious ones, so I honestly could only fall back on empirical or personal evidence.

    For many generations, one's childhood was scarcely such: you were made to take many responsibilities at a far younger age, dealt with far more stress, and on top of it all expected to be tough about it. Only in the last several decades have young, middle-class people truly been able to benefit from a period of their lives where, generally speaking, they are given far less mental and physical burden. But it seems that as we have it easier, we seem to be less satisfied or less capable of dealing with stress once it does inevitably arise.

    Now I'm not suggesting that Depression need only be tied to these outside factors. I acknowledge that some internal, biological component independent of outside factors may play a part (after all, you don't need to grow up in a slum or experience tragedy to have bouts of Depression - I myself am evidence of this). But, pathological or not, too many people seem content to either manifest some sort of disorder, or exaggerate and exploit the severity of a real one.

    As for a comparison between mental health problems in youth and cancer in older folks, that's a tough call, given their vast differences. Cancer is more likely to both kill you and lessen your quality of life, whether or not you fight it. Depression and it's ilk can indirectly do the same, but because there is apparently a thin line between "biological depression" - which could certainly be as dangerous - and it's more emotional counterpart - which is a matter of will or mild therapy - it's difficult for me to make a generalized statement.

    Sorry if I got a long winded with my reply.
  18. Things

    Things Well-Known Member

    "This relatively new ailment appeared on my radar a couple of years ago, when I discovered that more and more women were claiming they suffered from 'stress'."

    Does she honestly think depression is something that just appeared one day? Christ. :bash:

    I'm sort of happy about this though. I see a lot of angry comments on that article. It seems more people understand what depression is about than people who don't, and for that I'm happy.
  19. aoeu

    aoeu Well-Known Member

    Woo! I'm ahead of the fashion curve for once!
  20. plates

    plates Well-Known Member

    I feel this way about a lot of things, that medics say is biological only, and medication is the only answer.

    I would disagree that just because someone isn't "clinically depressed," what they are going through is less painful. Depression can come in so many forms, and can stem from so many reasons and can be debilitating- people who go through mood swings, and have a history of trauma, etc.

    I don't know but this reminds me of the emo thing:tongue:. I personally have never heard of a sub-culture called depression, as I've never heard of a sub culture called bipolar, or PTSD. But I agree that some identify so much from a psychiatric disorder, that they lose any sight of themselves as a whole- but I'd see that as a result of insecurities as to where they fit in society and who they are?

    I have trouble judging complete strangers' emotions, consciousness and history because of whatever privileges they might have had as I don't see how that has any links with depression. Do you think depression is a behaviour, rather than emotional turmoil?

    I had such a childhood, so did my mother. Being tough about it, doesn't mean that someone doesn't suffer, and that toughness can't be channelled into bullying and externalisation to people who are considered weak, as well as internalisation; drug dependencies, eating disorders,, self harm which can be well masked.

    I'd disagree with that, because not all young, middle class people are the same, have similar backgrounds in terms of family structure, (or are even that well off or comfortable financially) and the amount of pressure to perform and keep face, is huge. There is stress to work hard, there is stress to climb ladders, and be seen as "successful."

    I think like PB says, it's best to err on the side of caution and not jump to conclusions as to what is going on internally for some people, and for people's distress to be taken seriously.

    I've not heard of emotional depression - do you mean grief, or reactive depression? Those can be as debilitating as clinical depression. But I think biology is involved in all types of MH problems, but pathologising it as a disease is another thing.

    I personally think "stress" (or anxiety), which is what Janet Street Porter talks about, underlies many mental health problems. "Stress" esp chronic stress can change one's chemical's in the brain and how the central nervous system works.

    It's ok. Nice talking to you.
    Last edited by a moderator: May 16, 2010
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