Opinion

Don’t compare depression to suicide

Depression. That word will scare off the nearest date within earshot. But why are we so afraid of something that is very common?

Just because someone has depression does not necessarily mean that they are continually depressed and suicidal. I think people in our society are afraid of taking care of each other and want everyone to deal with their own problems. That’s why saying, “Oh yeah, I have depression” on a first date does not go over well. In fact, if that were a personality opener, most would ask for the check and hit the door, leaving you to find your own way home.

Did you know that, according to a study done at Berkeley, more than 50 percent of college freshmen experience some form of minor depression upon arriving at college? With the combination of moving to a new place with new faces, new ideas, new responsibilities and new demands, it becomes understandable.

The main cause behind depression is change, newness and having to adapt. So why do we try to ostracize those who struggle with depression? Trust me, not all “depressed” people are on the verge of hurling themselves off the roof of the dorms. However, I do know that many people do not share their feelings of loneliness and depression with others in fear that they will be treated differently.

To be honest, I think ignoring the signs of depression is a result of society’s skittish approach to the word depression itself. They make a bigger deal of it because there are severe cases that go untreated and turn into school shootings and suicides. No, depression is nothing to be taken lightly, but it is no reason to reject people, either. It is good for people who experience depression to be around people, and especially that they keep a normal schedule and do not bury their feelings in drugs and alcohol.

Coming from someone who went through the diagnosis and deals with it every day, I know it is important to have a good friend who knows what is going on and does not tolerate your self-wallowing. The voice of depressed people is a quiet one and only comes to people’s minds when there is a tragedy linked to it. I encourage those who do not suffer from depression to not simply write it off as an attention ploy or no big deal. Everyone needs each other. Don’t quiet the voice.

Jenny Hamilton is a junior majoring in broadcast journalism and sport administration. She may be contacted at jhamilton@themiamihurricane.com.


March 2, 2011

Reporters

Jenny Hamilton

Contributing Columnist


Around the Web
  • Miami Herald
  • UM News
  • HurricaneSports

Pro Football Focus unveiled where Power 5 programs rank in tackles for a loss or no gain against the ...

A six-pack of Hurricanes notes on a Thursday evening: ▪ UM coach Mark Richt has explained his decisi ...

Braylen Ingraham’s final college visit before decision day took him just about as far from home as p ...

The Miami Hurricanes had traveled half the field to start the second half when coach Mark Richt enco ...

Jeremiah Payton was one of those prospects the Miami Hurricanes coveted from just about the time he ...

UM’s annual Food Day celebration will highlight the need to eat sustainable, locally sourced foods ...

University of Miami changes program title of Women’s and Gender Studies to Gender and Sexuality Stud ...

Two families with deep ties to Miami—the Millers and Fains— celebrate two endowed faculty chair appo ...

The University of Miami remembers alumnus Erik Hauri—the man who discovered water on the moon. ...

Through an innovative program, Miami Law students are empowering local high schoolers to think like ...

The Miami women's tennis team turned in a strong showing Saturday at the ITA Southeast Regional ...

The University of Miami soccer team closes out action in the Tar Heel state with a match against thi ...

The Miami women's tennis team opened play Friday at the ITA Southeast Regional Championships Pr ...

The Miami Hurricanes fell in their tri-meet with Georgia Tech and Notre Dame Saturday afternoon, dro ...

The University of Miami women's swimming & diving team impressed in its quad-meet Friday af ...

TMH Twitter
About TMH

The Miami Hurricane is the student newspaper of the University of Miami in Coral Gables, Fla. The newspaper is edited and produced by undergraduate students at UM and is published weekly in print on Tuesdays during the regular academic year.