September 10 marks World Suicide Prevention Day, and with Robin Williams‘ tragic passing last year, the subject is more and more poignant. There are 350 million people on this planet who suffer from depression, one of the leading causes of suicide. Though its symptoms can be difficult to spot, depression is, for many, every bit as debilitating as other fatal physical diseases. And despite their best efforts, it can be overwhelming for friends and family to try and understand what those suffering from depression are going through and how they can help.
Fortunately, a community of talented artists have cropped up online, offering a glimpse into what living with depression is really like. One of them is Clay, the founder of Depression Comix. He was diagnosed with depression in 1993 and now creates comics on the subject in hopes of enlightening the world at large and comforting those who, like him, are suffering from it.
Being depressed isn’t like being in a bad mood. It isn’t something you can just shake off. Even asking for help can feel like an insurmountable task. While you might think it’s super easy to just pick up the phone and call a mental-health helpline (1-866-531-2600 in Ontario), depression itself can stand in the way of people getting the treatment they so desperately need.
If you are in crisis or considering suicide, go to the nearest hospital or call 9-1-1. For more information on depression or to find help for yourself or a loved one, contact your local Canadian Mental Health Association or visit Bell Let’s Talk.
Want to do more? Become a member of The Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention (CASP) and/or donate today.
It’s time we started talking openly about our mental health. Join the conversation on Bell Let’s Talk Day, January 27, and help end the stigma around mental illness. For every text message sent and mobile or long-distance call made by Bell Canada and Bell Aliant customers, Bell will donate five cents to Canadian mental health programs. The same goes for anyone sending a tweet using #BellLetsTalk or sharing the Bell Let’s Talk image on Facebook. But talking about it is just the first step: Visit letstalk.bell.ca for more ways you can effect change and build awareness around mental health.
WATCH: This woman completely nail what it feels like to be depressed: