Hyperbole and a Half: Depression Part Two

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Hyperbole and a Half: Depression Part Two

Postby Packbat » Fri May 31, 2013 12:43 pm

Because the subject of depression was mentioned in one of the comic discussion threads, I thought that this essay might be of interest: Essay/comic link. (I don't know how to categorize these things. It's the same genre as a lot of the tailsteak.com content, like this post -- writing, but with pictures occasionally taking over the load of communication.)

To borrow the author's description:
At this point, you're all probably wondering what is it? What's in the post?? Is it airplanes? And no, it unfortunately has very little to do with airplanes.* It's a sort of sequel to my post about depression. It is also about depression. In parts, it might get a little flinch-y and uncomfortable, and if I succeed in making you laugh during those parts, you're going to feel real weird about yourselves. But it's okay. Just let it happen. I WANT it to happen. Because it makes me feel powerful, and also because there are flinch-y, uncomfortable things everywhere. Seeing them is inevitable. If we can laugh about some of them, maybe they'll be less scary to look at.

*As it turns out, there is a plane. I had forgotten about it (it's small and not the main focus of the post) and the coincidence was entirely unintentional. I'd never tell you there aren't going to be planes while being fully aware that there's a plane.

It's wonderful, funny, sad, evocative ... I recommend it. The prior Adventures in Depression post is also good, but Part Two is way better, and you don't need Part One to get it.
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Re: Hyperbole and a Half: Depression Part Two

Postby JustinReilly » Fri May 31, 2013 3:23 pm

I saw the post a week ago. I was very glad to have seen it; the first post had me seriously worried about her. I've been that depressed. It's a very...true description of how it feels. I just hope Allie keeps getting better.
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Re: Hyperbole and a Half: Depression Part Two

Postby mendel » Sat Jun 01, 2013 5:30 pm

I liked (and hated) part two especially because it expressed something I've been meaning to tell the world about (myself): that a key part of depression is the absence of hope, and that this entails quite a few consequences that are not obvious to people used to having hope the same way they have air. (This is really obvious when people with hope try to "motivate" depressed people.)
It's also made me appreciate the central place hope has in religion and especially the New Testament.

I think a big part of losing hope is repeatedly making the experience that you are not in control of your life, or at least not the things that matter to you.
I theorize that a good depression therapy would be to identify, seek out or provide small areas of meaningful action (e.g. tending for some plants) where what you do has an effect, and where you do have some control without a burden of obligation (because obligationmena sloss of control), and from these small areas grow small hope, and extend from there.
What the heck kind of religion do you guys think I follow? (#381)
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