This is from my blog: maverickideasblog.wordpress.com 

I have depression. 

Mine is chronic, meaning I have had it my whole life and it will be there for the rest of my life, as opposed to being depression that was brought on by an event in my life.

I also have anxiety and panic disorders, but it is the depression that affects me the most. 

I have family and friends with depression. I bet you do, too. 

19 million Americans have depression.  

But, even with it affecting so many of us, and so many people we love...and even with all the scientific research that proves this is an actual medical problem, not just made up...

Even so... 

We still have this collective idea that people with depression are broken. That they can't function or thrive in work or in social situations. 

And even worse: most people believe that depression is a choice. That you can just get over it if you choose to. 

This is an extremely dangerous way of treating this. 

Not only does it make the person (who is already going through a lot of pain) feel like they are the problem, but it doesn't allow the person to get better. 

There are ways to get better, or at least, to make it not so bad. 

Everybody has a different method, but all have been proven to have a significant impact on battling depression: going on a walk or exercise, doing a hobby you like, or even medication to help with the chemical imbalances caused by depression. 

I see so many posts about changing the stigma on people with depression and trying to get people to see that this is a real problem. 

But this is only half of it. 

We also need to teach people how to actually combat depression and how to help the people in their lives who have it. 

Today my friend shared a depression awareness post on Facebook, and it really resonated with me. I went to hit the "share" button, but I stopped immediately because I was afraid of what people would comment on it. People have treated me in the past in a way that makes me feel like I am somehow complaining when I want to talk about this issue. That I need to just "get over it". 

Today they won. They silenced me out of fear. This should never happen. 

People with depression need a voice. They need their voice. 

Depression Mission: Find your voice.