On 8th August 2012 I blew my fuse again. I gleaned this terminology from a book by Dr. Timothy Cantopher called Depressive Illness: The Curse of the Strong. He believes that although depression can be triggered by events and psychological factors, depression is essentially a chemical imbalance and this 'fuse' is our brain transmitter chemicals. If you put 18 amps through a 13 amp fuse there is only one possible result. He contends that by realising that mental health is a physical illness it allows the sufferer to take the rest needed and to stop fighting it.
Whether you believe his theory is not important, but believing that mental health is just as physical as a temporary thing like a broken leg or a lifetime illness like diabetes was my eureka moment and turned my thinking around.
It didn't mean I gave up by feeling that it wasn't my fault and I couldn't help it, but rather it empowered me to accept that my depression was part of me and whether it was temporary or permanent it was OK.
I believe that there are events in my past that have triggered my depression, but although they are important, they are not. That might sound a contradiction, but I cannot change those events, but I can try to change the way they control me. I spent close to forty years battling with past events that were not my fault and even if they were, what did that achieve... a fairly regular cycle of breakdowns triggered by those extra 5 amps?
I am not saying I don't relive those events, nor am I saying that I ignore them, as I don't. They still have a nasty habit of creeping up on me unexpectedly. What I try to do is to take a step back and give myself the compassion I would give someone else in my position. I feel I am good at helping other people to be understanding of themselves, so why should I not extend that compassion to myself?
I am not sure if anyone on Moodscope has already said this, but in the words of the late, great Whitney Houston "Learning to love yourself, it is the greatest love of all".
A Moodscope member.
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