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Dr. Sheron's Blog

Robin Williams Suicide Reminds Us About Depression

The recent suicide of legendary comedian Robin Williams is indeed tragic. His death has been linked to depression, and it underscores yet again that depression is real. When Williams‘s death was first made public I heard comments such as, “He was so famous- why would he kill himself? And “I loved him so much, why would he do that?” Lots of famous people have battled with depression and killed themselves, including Don Cornelius, Marilyn Monroe and Donny Hathaway.

Lots of everyday people have done the same. Depression does not care about your money, status or family. It is a heavy weight that persistently drags you down. It will not let you go unless you get help. Medication is available. It does work.

During the Rice discussion, Smith alluded to women in abuse cases he said, "Let's make sure we don't do anything to provoke wrong action ... we got to also make sure that you can do your part to do whatever you can do to make, to try to make sure it doesn't happen again."Too many of us brush off our own bouts of depression as “having a bad day,” when in reality we are just a few steps from a ledge. Depression is not something that can be laughed off or snapped out of. Depression’s prolonged times of sorrow and despair can occur even when things are going great.

Former child star Todd Bridges took to Twitter and made some harsh remarks about William’s suicide, calling it “selfish.” Bridges quickly issued a public apology for making insensitive remarks, insisting the news brought back bad memories of his best friend's suicide. In the midst of his heated rant he said noteworthy; “america’s not doing enough to help people with depression.”

I am not waiting on America to do something. Here are some tips about depression from Mental Health in America.com. If you see yourself here please call 1-800 273-TALK. Fight your depression; it does not have to take you out.

  • Clinical depression is one of the most common mental illnesses, affecting more than 19 million Americans each year.[1] This includes major depressive disorder, manic depression and dysthymia, a milder, longer-lasting form of depression.
  • Depression causes people to lose pleasure from daily life, can complicate other medical conditions, and can even be serious enough to lead to suicide.
  • Depression can occur to anyone, at any age, and to people of any race or ethnic group. Depression is never a "normal" part of life, no matter what your age, gender or health situation.
  • Unfortunately, although about 70% of individuals with depression have a full remission of the disorder with effective treatment, fewer than half of those suffering from this illness seek treatment.[2] Too many people resist treatment because they believe depression isn't serious, that they can treat it themselves or that it is a personal weakness rather than a serious medical illness.
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