Recently, an English professional footballer opened up about his battle with depression, and this ended up being big news in England. This was partly because he is a well-known footballer and partly because of what he spoke about.
He said that there were three main reasons why he ended up in a bad way. Firstly, one of his uncles committed suicide, secondly, his mother was racially abused, and thirdly, someone with a gun attacked his brother at his family home.
A Tough Time
This was after he was unable to play football, due to the fact that he was trying to recover from a severe knee injury. Taking all this into account, it could be said that it is not much of a surprise that he had ‘mental health’ problems.
Even so, based on what has been said about him in the papers, it is as though what he went through was abnormal. This has meant that he has been seen as ‘brave’ for speaking out about what he went though.
Part of Life
If someone went through something like this and it didn’t have an effect on how they felt, it would probably show that there is something wrong with them. So, for him to feel ‘depressed’ after what he went through shows that he is human.
The fact that it is a surprise that he went through all this can create the impression that human beings are supposed to feel good all the time. No matter what they go through, they should always have a smile on their face.
The Modern Day World
This goes into how what it means to be human is slowly being redefined. In the same way that just about every hair from the neck down is no longer seen as serving a purpose; so-called negative emotions are also perceived in the same way.
With this in mind, they need to be totally removed, which will allow someone to walk around in a blissful state at all times. The drug industry will be there to give people what they need to make this a reality.
There is no doubt that it is relatively new for people to open up about their inner world, and this is why when someone does open up, it is big news. One way of looking at this would be to say that it shows how common it is for people to hide how they feel.
As a result of this, it has created a society where people think that there must be something wrong with them if they don’t always feel happy and totally at peace. They are then going to feel the need to wear a mask around others and to act as though they have it all together.
What this has resulted in is millions a millions of people hiding how they really feel from others and suffering in the process. And, as it can be normal for a man to have the need to look strong, it can be more common for a man to suffer in silence than a woman.
They are then going to feel ashamed of something that is simply part of the human experience. Trying to go against this is what will lead to problems, as opposed to the experience itself.
One of the ways that Danny Rose dealt with his depression was by going on medication, and this was something that his close family didn’t even know about. Keeping so much to himself was bound to cause him to suffer.
If humans being were independent doing something this wouldn’t be a problem, but as they are interdependent, this is not going to work. This is why talking to a counsellor, for instance, can be so beneficial, as one will be able to get everything of their chest and this will have a positive effect on their well-being.
A Strange Scenario
One can only speculate why he kept all this to himself for so long, and perhaps he felt too ashamed to open up about what he was going through. This was someone who earned enough money to have a whole team of experts, yet he still suffered in silence.
Along with feeling too shamed to open up to his family and friends, maybe he thought that they wouldn’t be able to handle it. One also has to wonder how close he is to the people in his life, as surely they would have noticed that something wasn’t right; it’s not as though he was someone who lived on the edge of society and had no one around him.
An Unemployed Ambassador
As he said that he went on medication to handle what he was going through, there is no doubt that this would have caused a lot of people to believe that taking medication is the right approach to take. In this case, it will be no different to how some people believe that taking a pill is the way to deal with a headache.
Clearly, this is going to help the drug industry to make even more money. So, in the same way that some doctors are given special ‘gifts’ for using certain drugs; Danny Rose would have surely earned a number of special gifts for what he said, if he was a doctor.
Now, there could be seen as a time and a place for taking medication for mental and emotional problems. But if this is seen as the right approach to take whenever someone feels down or has gone through a traumatic experience (or a number of them), it can set them to be dependent on drugs.
Challenges are part of life, and means that it is not going to be possible for someone live a life where nothing bad even happens to them. Along with what happens to them, there will be what will happen to their friends and family, which will also affect them.
Therefore, instead of trying to deny reality, it would be better for them to look into how they can develop the strength to handle the challenges of life. Doing this will create resilience and make it easier for them to handle the ups and downs.
Relying on drugs will just make them weaker and it will also stop them from developing self-knowledge. When it comes to having good mental and emotional health, there are a number of factors involved.
Having close connections with others, eating the right food, exercising, being able to cry, getting enough sleep, mediating, healing early abuse and/or neglect (if there was any) and spending time in nature all play a part. The main thing is that they reach out for support and don’t allow themselves to suffer in silence.
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Oliver JR Cooper
Oliver JR Cooper
Author of 26 books, Transformational Writer, Teacher & Consultant.
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That which is contained within these articles is based on my own empirical understanding and is true for me at the time they were written. However, as I continue to grow, what I perceive as the truth will inevitably change and as a result of this - parts of these articles may not reflect my current outlook.