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Bustle – This Teen’s Post About Finally Brushing Her Hair While Dealing With Depression Is Resonating With Thousands

recent Bustle post highlights how self care and depression go hand in hand, and this teen’s experience with depression is resonating with thousands. It opens:

Katelyn Marie Todd didn’t want to hug people. The 17-year-old was in the midst of a month-long depression that made it difficult to maintain her personal hygiene, and she knew she smelled bad. Then one day, the depression cracked — not completely, just a little, just enough for Katelyn to do something she hadn’t done in weeks: brush her hair.

With most of 22.000 comments to her Facebook post sharing similar struggles with self care, it is clear that the struggle for self care is real. For many, it isn’t easy to take care of yourself, on a good day, and sometimes if you are depressed, it can feel downright impossible.

This Bustle article highlights just how common this experience can be, and references a few of my comments I shared with SELF earlier last week. To read the full post, click HERE.

As clinical psychologist Alicia H. Clark told Self: “Hopelessness sets in, and hopelessness can fuel feelings of worthlessness that preclude a sense of self-pride and respect in a circular way: ‘I am worthless, so why should I bother?’ becomes ‘I can’t be bothered so I feel worthless.’”

Clark says different self-care patterns can be a sign someone is dealing with depression. Major depressive disorder is one of the most common mental disorders in the United States, and the National Institute of Mental Health estimates that 6.7 percent of adults have experiences at least one major depressive episode in the past year. If someone you know is struggling with depression, Clark says the best thing you can do is to be patient and supportive.

“It can be hard to understand how someone could simply not get out of bed or clean themselves, and even harder not to be alarmed by it” she says, “Patience and compassion can help your loved one know you care, as can rational reminders that they are depressed and need help. Offering hope is probably one of the most powerful things you can do.”

 

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Alicia H. Clark, PsyD

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