When you picture depression, you might picture somebody laying in bed, too sad to get up. But while that might be one symptom for some people with depression, it can look and feel very different for each individual. That’s what the Twitter hashtag “My Depression Looks Like” is showing: Depression doesn’t always match the stereotypes we hear about in news articles or see on TV. It also has many lesser-known symptoms, and for many, it looks like nothing at all because they’re not allowed to show it.
According to a 2013 Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report, 10.7 percent of adult women and 7.7 percent of men experience depression. The umbrella term “depression” encompasses a number of psychological conditions, according to the National Institute of Mental Health; it can include persistent depressive disorder (symptoms of depression lasting for several years), perinatal depression (depression during and after pregnancy), and seasonal affective disorder (depression during the winter). Each of these can also present themselves in a number of ways — for example, in addition to the “sad, anxious, or ’empty’ mood” and lack of energy that typically characterize depression, people with depression can also experience irritability, restlessness, loss of appetite, trouble sleeping, difficulties focusing or remembering things, and physical pains like headaches and cramps.
Although not much is known about the hashtag’s history, one of its earliest appearances ocurred back in January from a user known as @birdonabirdwith the tweet, “#mydepressionlookslike a super clean house with nothing out of place because I’m not creating anything.” (@birdonabird tells Bustle that they, too, are not sure where it came from.) It may be a riff off the#MyAnxietyLooksLike hashtag, which was started in 2014 by Amanda Alcantara. #MyDepressionLooksLike has recently begun trending again, with Twitter users employing it to talk about depression’s many and varied manifestations.
See some Tweets and finish reading the full article here: http://www.bustle.com/articles/162819-my-depression-looks-like-twitter-hashtag-sheds-light-on-the-non-stereotypical-aspects-of-depression