If depression were a choice, I wouldn’t be up at 5.21am posting due to depression-related insomnia.

If depression were a choice, when I’d have first tasted depression at the age of sixteen I’d have realised “depression wasn’t for me”, and I would have refused to accept this unwanted, numbing and hellish intrusion into my life any more.

If depression were a choice, believe me, I’d have OPTED OUT years ago.

If depression were a choice, I would never have let things get to the stage where I acted to end my life, as I would have UN-chosen my depression well before suicidal ideation, plans, and attempts ever materialised.

If depression were a choice, there would’ve been no need for those three stays on the acute psychiatric ward, kept away from my husband and kids, under one-to-one observation.

If depression were a choice, I’d have no need for the anti-depressants, mood stabilisers, antipsychotics, benzodiazepines, and sleeping tablets I’ve taken these past few years to keep me present, breathing, and (just-about) functioning.

If depression were a choice, I’d un-choose it every time it hits without fail. And not only that- it’d be an EASY choice to make.

If depression were a choice, I’d have to do a lot less supporting of my close network of friends, as we’d all choose to live a life of contentment. After all, who wouldn’t ‘choose’ a happier more contented and less painful life?

If depression were a choice, a painful and frightening death by suicide would NEVER EVER need to happen.

If depression were a choice, no person would ever have to face being bereaved by suicide. I have friends who lost their beloved parents this way. I observe the ongoing lasting devastation of that loss and see the pain in their eyes. They tell me it’s a wound that never heals, and I believe them. Was their death/loss avoidable? I guess the only way it could be, is if depression wasn’t real, and enough of a reason to opt for death over life.

Have you ever tried to hurt yourself? I have. If only I’d have realised depression was a choice though, I could have skipped all that. Silly me eye roll.

If depression were a choice, I wouldn’t have needed that visit from social services to ensure the kids were okay after my crisis. What mother would ‘choose’ that?

If depression were a choice, a lot of GPs, psychiatrists, psychologists, art therapists, occupational therapists, psychiatric nurses, social workers, support workers, counsellors, psychotherapists, and pharmaceutical experts would be out of a job.

If depression were a choice, mental health charities would have a far simpler job; as there wouldn’t be the same efforts required to raise awareness and reduce societal stigma as there are now. All they would need to do is adjust their posters, websites, social media posts and promotional literature to include the simple educational message ‘WE RECOMMEND YOU AVOID DEPRESSION’. Job done.

In a modern enlightened society such as this, I can’t believe I only just heard that depression is a choice. I so wish I’d have been told that sooner. It would have saved a whole lotta heartache for me and the other millions of people worldwide suffering with this condition. IF ONLY I had known all this time that I was actually “choosing” depression, and could therefore deselect it…..What a difference it could have made to the last NINETEEN YEARS!





This post was inspired, [if that is the right word], by a fellow blogger who left a comment on this MENTAL HEALTH BLOG– WRITTEN BY A MENTAL HEALTH BLOGGER WITH A DUAL DIAGNOSIS OF BORDERLINE PERSONALITY DISORDER AND POST-TRAUMATIC STRESS DISORDER that I should “CHOOSE not to be depressed”

Needless to say, I was not massively impressed by this thoughtless and insensitive remark.


I have titled this post #If depression were a choice, and am hoping you might try your own version of this post. If depression were a choice, how in your mind might life be different? I can’t wait to see what you come up with.

I personally believe bloggers can do a great deal in terms of shifting attitudes; that is if like-minded people like us blog in unison. The more people who join in this ANTI-STIGMA series of posts on blogs and social media, the more the anti-stigma message can infiltrate out across the virtual world.

My personal favourite #if depression were a choice line, came from a personal friend of mine with Bipolar Disorder [in the midst of a severe depressive disorder] who absolutely nailed it when he said, very simply…

“If depression were a choice, then I have awful taste”. DH.

 summerSHINES ©