Black people have depression too: The root

I’m left out, forgotten about and told, it’s “all in your head”…

I’ve had family members look past my depression and mistake it for just another bad day when in reality this was an ongoing cycle of bad days, bad thoughts and continuous feelings of being unworthy. My past trauma was catching up to me, shit, life was catching up to me. Every year I aged I thought, what have I accomplished since my last birthday? Who do I aspire to be? What is it that I see myself doing for the rest of my life? I felt unsuccessful, so many dead ends, missed opportunities and unfinished goals I left abandoned.My past trauma was enough to cripple my way of thinking and thereafter my actions. What you think, you become, you think positive your life is positive. You think negatively your life will then be negative. So with that being said the mental, the verbal and sexual abuse had an underlying source of pain that I could not easily shake, I was becoming what I been through…

All at once things seem to be falling apart collectively, this is where the depression and anxiety came in at. I was drowning in my trauma, my problems were just too much for me to handle. I was having an incredibly difficult time adjusting through my issues and living my life as a single millennial.

One day I opened up to my Cousin about my depression/anxiety and he told me I needed to get over that shit and that I needed to stop making excuses for not doing what I was supposed to be doing. I had an Aunt tell me that I WASN’T depressed because I went out with my friends’ bowling one night. That was 2 years prior… and even if I did go out with my friends that doesn’t mean that I don’t have anxiety or depression…

I truly believe that black people are ignorant to the idea that their children, grandkids etc can, in fact, can be battling a mental illness right under their nose, that more times out of none stemmed from the way they have treated us growing up…

There’s a ton of resources available online if you aren’t sure what it is I’m speaking about or going through, I wish people would take the time to actually understand and research for themselves instead of telling someone the way they feel is INCORRECT!

How dare you belittle my pain?

It’s not fair to be suffering in silence and no one takes you seriously, anyone that does not have anxiety or depression WILL NOT AND CANNOT UNDERSTAND WHERE YOU ARE COMING FROM OR WHAT YOU ARE FEELING. It will sound overexaggerated and unrealistic that you are feeling the way you do which is why you may not be able to complete your task, be motivated to socialize or attend functions.

The thought of the things that set you off or actually doing those things make you anxious, you overthink, your body chemistry begins to change, you are suddenly uneasy, shaking, breathing heavily, you are in complete panic. On the outside, you may not look as bad as you feel but on the inside, it’s BAD.

Most time it’s overlooked, and not just by our parents etc, even from outsiders.  I’m a black woman who is stereotyped as having an attitude, is rude, irrational etc, but not as having anxiety or depression…

A black man commits a crime or maybe he doesn’t commit a crime, either way, he is acknowledged negatively and lands on the front page of a newspaper as “Prior Ex-felon with a history of illegal substance abuse gives back to the community providing back to school supplies.” A white man will rape a woman and land on the front page as “Athletic scholar and former Penn State grad accused of rape. He scored 50 points for his team back in 2009.”

Crack floods the black community and we are all labeled as drug addicts and thrown in jail. Heroin floods the white community and it’s now an opioid epidemic that needs to be addressed now! They are not judged, they are felt sorry for and sent to rehab where they can get help for their addiction…

Mental health in the black community is serious and very well REAL. So many of us millennials suffer alone because of a lack of support from family and friends etc that do not take the time to understand or sympathize with our day to day struggle. If Someone reaches out for help they SHOULD NOT be ignored or told to “cheer up” because it is never that easy…

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17 thoughts on “Black people have depression too: The root

  1. Very beautifully written. The way I see it is either people go through depression in life or they live in denial. There are so many people I know who have gone through depression, including me. Just never called it by that name as at one point it had become my way of living.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. I’m not black but I’m human and I’m female and that’s all that matters. I’m not originally from the US and I’d never encountered racism like I’ve seen since moving here. It’s horrifying. I don’t get it. I either like someone or I don’t but it’s not because of colour. I do think young Black people in America have a hard time with both acceptance from other cultures and the older generation. Every culture is looking for a scapegoat to feel better about themselves. We won’t have acceptance until we let that shit go. The older generation grew up through an era where they kept their heads down and tried to be invisible. With some of the stories I’ve read who can blame them. This generation is paying the price because we’re in a time where everyone should be able to be open and free about mental health and other acceptance issues but condemnation and attempts to silence are coming from all directions. I don’t know the answer, all I can do is try to support people individually but who knows, maybe that is the answer. If I accept and support the people I know – and they accept and support people they know well, who knows how far we could go? It all has to start with someone – might as well be me 😊
    I got your back girlie. You keep shining, just as bright as you are!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Aww thank you so much!! I really appreciate this comment ❤️ you are so right and we definitely need more people like you!!!! I wish everyone could have this approach because at the end of the day we are all HUMAN! Thanks for reading girl ☺️

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I too struggle with anxiety and depression which onset after having my daughter and developing post partum. I still have a daily battle within myself knowing that I should be more forgiving and patient with myself, but at the same time thinking I’m overexaggerating and should just get over it. After going to counseling, I realized I was minimizing my feelings and wasn’t giving myself permission to just NOT BE OKAY sometimes. I’m my own worst enemy at times- judging myself for not just getting over it. See how this can cycle out of control right? Lol. Thank you for sharing your experience and bringing awareness to the black community. It is much needed.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you so much for your feedback! I definitely appreciate these types of comments!
      I agree with you 100% that cycle really does get out of hand 😩 I realized I was messing up my minimizing and or trying to fight what I was feeling which is not good. I learned to allow my self to feel what that moment and deal with it the best way that made me comfortable. I just learn to listen to my heart and my body more which is so much easier on the mind. You realizing this is SO much growth tho girl ! Give your self more credit ❤️ thank you so much for reading and your feedback🤗 And if you haven’t yet go ahead and read my blog post about me fighting a 3 week episode of depression and what I learned in between that time. Very similar to what we are speaking about!
      https://therawdosage.com/2018/02/22/what-a-fuckn-breakthrough-2018-has-been-already/

      Liked by 2 people

  4. You made a lot of really good points Dolce. Speaking of anxiety, I actually had a conversation with my sister today and she was telling me that she has been having similar feelings of anxiousness just like I do. I had no idea. Now, had I not been educated on what anxiety is (since I struggle with this as you know), I probably would have responded ignorantly like many black people do who are not aware of mental issues. Even though I hate struggling with anxiety, I am glad I am able to pinpoint and support her with what she is going through since I deal with some of the same symptoms. And who knows? It may even bring us closer. 🙂 I feel like black people respond to mental issues using such a negative light because we feel like we always have to be strong. We are taught that growing up. “Show no weakness.” “A black woman never does what she wants to do, but always does what she has to do.” “Real men don’t cry.” “It is what it is.” Nah, it is what it is right now! 🤦🏽 But today does not determine the rest of your life. Sometimes when you are in that dark place, it gets hard for you to think like that; especially for me. We need to start telling each other that it’s okay to be vulnerable. I struggle with that myself. Not because my parents told me any of these things, but because I feel like society has taught me that I have to be strong all of the time. It’s not fair because even the strong get weak. I just don’t like hiding it so I try to be more open about it. It’s not easy though when others haven’t been where you’ve been. Explaining yourself over and over again gets tiresome for me. Great blog!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. You are right, Bobbi. You’re right. Confession: I found out about a year ago that I’m not a weak person for seeking help for having depression.
      For years I did not seek help because I was always told “Black people don’t get depressed. That’s some white people shit!”
      I’m guilty! I’ve said the same thing to others. I’m sorry. I believed that saying all my life til last year.
      Last year, my entire life fell apart and I didn’t know how to put it back together.
      A friend of mine told me that I should get some help. I told her “What! No one does that. I just have to get it together, I’ll be fine.”
      Another friend told me “write all of your problems down on paper. It would give you a great perspective of life.” He handed me a pen and a big yellow notepad. I smiled, replied “thank you” and I thought to myself “sure whatever tgif.”
      I went home and actually wrote down my problems on paper. Eight and a half pages is what was written in ink when I got tired of writing and wasn’t even done. I just broke down and cried. I read every page out loud. I remember feeling horrible, mad and sad because I was supposed to be strong and know what to do but I didn’t. I drank that weekend away.
      Monday morning I went to see a therapist. The therapy sessions helped a me get through a great deal; helped realize that I don’t have to suppress my feelings and they don’t belong in a bottle.
      I’m writing this because I want people to know that you don’t have to be what society thinks you should be or believe the myths you’ve been told.
      Black people get depressed and it’s ok to seek help.

      Liked by 2 people

      1. Wow thank you for this testimony. Dealing with depression is HARD and sometimes you don’t even know where to start, initially it’s hard to process what you are actually feeling. I believe most of us go through that “denial phase” where we act like what we are feeling and dealing with isn’t real, kind of like what you described. What I do want to say is that your making really good progress by accepting it and gong to get the help you need! Major GROWTH!!! I agree with you, society does a good job at minimizing our pain and it’s absolutely NOT ok, more of us need to pay attention to our bodies and mental and address the situation accordingly instead of suppressing it bc that never ends well.
        Thanks so much for reading ☺️

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  5. Now this is good!!! I can totally relate, bc girl I have been there!!! & when I tell you been there, I mean suicidal, twice! But everyone thinks you’re so strong & so confident & so brave, but even confidence cracks! Depression should never be overlooked, bc that’s how some ppl never make it out. Sadly, ppl take their own lives, bc sometimes it feels like it’ll never end, but I thank God for bringing me out! You just have to find what gives you life & live for it!!! Bc you are amazing & you have purpose! You can beat depression! It doesn’t have to be a title, hovering over your mind, holding you hostage to fear!! I believe you will come out of this & I will be praying for you. I pray that fear doesn’t knock at your door at all this week! You’ll enjoy everyday & depression will see you & keep it moving!! Like you said, “idk you from a hole in the wall”, but I’m here for you, girl! Lol seriously! 💛

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Awwwww thank you SO MUCH!!! WOW, I’m getting all emotional over here 😭 omg
      I definitely agree with you 110% ! Those feelings and emotions can take over if you allow it, and YES, sadly people do take their lives bc the mental illness takes over THEM. It’s so so sad. I really believe the main reason is bc they have a LACK OF SUPPORT. Lack of family and friends who don’t understand them or don’t think it is “that serious” I hope more awareness can be brought about with this topic, ESPECIALLY IN THE BLACK COMMUNITY.
      I’m praying for your healing as well! Thank you again love ❤️

      Liked by 2 people

      1. You are so welcome!! 😇💛 & thank you!! You are so right though, we need more awareness!! You just inspired me to do just that! I needed this post, today!

        Liked by 1 person

  6. I can relate to this 100%. It’s overlooked ALOT in the black community. They either say it’s not real, or they say you need to pray more or something like that. I hope your post can raise more awareness. Loved it!

    Liked by 3 people

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