Tuesday, 13 March 2012

The serious one

Prozac nation is a good book - her other work - not so much - but this, this is a great quote. Read it again and think about it one moment. We are in a time where there is so much choice. It could be seen as a good thing but it seems to confuse people and put so much pressure onto everyone. The idea of success if getting more and more warped over time. The youth are expecting more and more for doing less and less. Times are hard. The average adult is expected to have a whole series of mini break downs in their life time now. The family unit is broken. Community spirit barely exists. We, as intelligent human beings with the capacity to understand so much seem to fail or seem unwilling to try to understand our fellow human being. We assume if someone smiles that they are happy. Have you never heard of the tears of a clown? We think it, therefore we are. Well sadly no that's not true. A friend of mine worked with a girl that seemed OK, she seemed to have a nice enough life, she told her she'd been feeling a little down. She went home that weekend and didn't arrive at work on Monday, or on Tuesday, people were starting to moan about her, then someone went to her house. She'd killed herself after work on that Friday afternoon. A young man from Crouch End recently killed himself, on February 14th, I don't know if the date is significant to the act or not. No one seemed to sense his pain and his anguish. His last tweet now seems to explain a lot. Just like DJAM's....it seemed like a sad tweet nothing more and nothing less but the body found the next day confirmed it was a signing off from this world. There were two suicides in one area of London on the tubes on Sunday. People are still jumping from 'Suicide bridge' in Archway. There are a million and one cases similar to this around the world all the time. Yet still we won't talk about depression. We see it as a dirty word, as though it's something that is contagious, as though it's something self indulgent and we should just buck up and stop moaning. We feel that asking for help is a sign of weakness. We suffer alone. Can you imagine feeling so lost that taking your own life - that precious thing called life - just taking it and extinguishing the last little bits of light from it? If only we stopped to care. If only we stopped the prejudice. Don't assume you know someone, don't assume you know their life and what they are going through. The man that was just rude to you in the local shop - maybe he's just lost his loved one. You can't go around excusing everyone for everything but I think we can all do a little bit more to understand depression, to try to help and to try to build some form of community again. We all are more than capable of caring.


  1. well said ali...i swear, u speak my thoughts.. its absolutely crazy :)
    you know, two years ago, i was one of the souls standing at that archway bridge myself deliberating whether to jump... i used to live in highgate and it gets absolutely depressing every time i come home and walk that bridge with this burden on my shoulders and nobody there to truly care about me.. I think london has got to be one of the coldest places in the world. u have a million people surrounding u but yet u can be just so alone.

    when i moved to singapore things got a little bit better.. the depression is there but family support counts for everything. i will be back again in london in july and part of me is worried that my depression might resurface n will find me at that bridge again. i hope not :)

  2. I am so sorry that you had to hit those kind of lows.
    It sounds so dismissive to say that you have to hit rock bottom before you can make your way back up sometimes, but by that I mean I hope that was your rock bottom.
    London is a very weird place - it is so beautiful but so stressful and expensive.
    Sadly I don't know why everyone is in such a hurry to get nowhere and forgets their manners.
    The world is a lonely place if we don't stop to help one another and each and every one of us needs help sometimes.
    When you come back to London don't let it beat you like that.
    I wish I had a magic wand or a miracle cure for such things but I think all I can say is when I get a little down I go for a walk, I put in my headphones and take my camera and make London my own little world and shut out the rest. I'll watch a silly movie and let myself get absorbed into a great book. It's vital to have alone time but if you find you don't know anyone - look out some support groups - there is no shame in that, start a social club, book club, movie club anything just so you can have some company. I wish you the best of luck. Hopefully we will all start to build a community around ourselves again.