Abroad, you are highly productive, successful and motivated. You have a large group of friends, a great job and it seems that you have a determined life. But on the inside, you are gripped by low self-esteem and pressure to be perfect.
This is the reality for those who have high functioning depression. They suffer in silence while doing what they need to survive.
More commonly, the condition is known as dysthymia or persistent depressive disorder (PDD). It carries all the same symptoms of major depression, but it is much more difficult to detect.
"Major depressive disorder is associated with a combination of emotional, cognitive and physical changes," explains psychologist Suzanne Leckie of SANE Australia.
"These may include sadness, guilt and feelings of hopelessness, problems concentrating and remembering, experiencing less pleasure in usual activities, fatigue, trouble sleeping and changes in appetite."
If I asked you to photograph and describe a depressed person, what would you imagine?
Does anyone have trouble getting out of bed every day? Someone who is calling work sick because he can not leave home? Someone who is isolated from friends and possibly sleeps 10 or 12 hours a day? Someone who can not stop crying and who feels desperate?
Or imagine a popular professional, educated in college, living in the big city with a great job, a good group of friends and a long list of compliments to his name, but who wake up every morning with a feeling of passionate anxiety ? and an internalized pressure to continue being "perfect" and "keep everything together"?
Can you imagine a successful employee of the Millennial company whom you admire for his discipline and management, but who, on the inside, is self-critical and demolishingly demanding for himself and who, after work, confronts his life with a drink or two and several hours of play?
And you imagine that smiling, competent and kind work colleague who always seems to be doing All The Things, but who secretly, inwardly feels that he is a complete failure and that time flies by and he is wasting it every day?
Let's face it: you probably do not imagine these people. And yet, each one of them could be a perfect example of someone facing what is known as "high functioning depression".
While high functioning depression does not seem to be the stereotype of depression that most of us have in our heads, this diagnosis carries significant risks if left untreated.
But the most complicated part of high functioning depression is that it is difficult to detect precisely because the people who treat it seem, from the outside, as if they were together.
This can lead to a lack of ability to self-identify (or have those around you identify you) as depressed people and, in addition, a possible resistance to seeking treatment due to the stigma surrounding the more "typical" depression. And this is a big problem.
So, in today's blog post, I want to explain what high-functioning depression really is, guide you through the 11 high-functioning signs of depression and how this can appear, explain the unique risks associated with high-functioning depression. and share more information about how you or your loved ones can get the help you need if you identify with a high functioning depression. INSTAGRAM:
Video credits to Bipolar Barbie YouTube channel