Sensory Processing Disorder– (SPD, formerly known as “sensory integration dysfunction”) is a condition that exists when sensory signals don’t get organized into appropriate responses. A person with SPD finds it difficult to process and act upon information received through the senses, which creates challenges in performing countless everyday tasks. Motor clumsiness, behavioral problems, anxiety, depression, school failure, and other impacts may result if the disorder is not treated effectively. In other words, you can be either exceptionally sensitive to surroundings or find it hard to process emotions and eternal factors.
Clinical Depression– clinical depression is marked by a depressed mood most of the day, particularly in the morning, and a loss of interest in normal activities and relationships-symptoms that are present every day for at least 2 weeks. It is the most serious form of depression. Depressive illnesses are disorders of the brain. Brain-imaging technologies have shown that the brains of people who have depression look different than those of people without depression. The parts of the brain involved in mood, thinking, sleep, appetite, and behavior appear different. But these images do not reveal why the depression has occurred.
I have both- I’ve lived with SPD since I was born and diagnosed with clinical depression Junior year of high school. I’ve wanted to talk about this on my blog for a while now, as I feel it is important to talk about. SPD is hardly brought up in the field of mental health issues, as there is hardly any research on it. Which really frustrates me because it is real and needs to be recognized and researched. The lack of recognition is what led my SPD to my clinical depression. The friend who was a child therapist and unofficially diagnosed me couldn’t officially do it as it wasn’t recognized by the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM), published by the American Psychiatric Association. This manual is used by mental health providers to diagnose mental conditions and by insurance companies to reimburse for treatment. My family couldn’t afford the expensive resources available since our insurance wouldn’t and couldn’t cover treatment. I constantly struggled with this disorder and later the depression that came as a result.
So, last night I had a movie marathon with myself and ended the night with re-watching Perks of Being a Wallflower- I love this movie. Lately I’ve been thinking a lot about mental illness and how far I’ve come in terms of taking control of my life and emotions. And there was this line in the movie, not one of the well known ones, but a short and fleeting quote from Emma Watson’s character. She has started college and comes home for break; speaking to Charlie, she says “Well, can I tell you something? I’ve been away for two months. It’s another world. And it gets better.” And it gets better. Watching this the first time three years ago with my friend, I didn’t believe that, I related to Charlie because of the way he felt empty, hopeless, like everything bad around him was his fault. It took an hour after it was over, for me to stop crying. My friend grabbed us towels and we were lying out in her yard at 12 am, listening to music, one earbud in my ear and one in hers. Now, watching it last night, I cried but for different reasons. I understood finally that it could get better and it did. I’m on meds, I was seeing a therapist, I survived high school, college is great and what Emma said was my life at the present moment.
I was going to wait until the official national mental health week in May, to post something like this, but I decided if I feel this strongly about it, I need to do it now. Usually, I stick to posts along the lines of film and such, but Mental health is important to me and what else is a personal interest blog for, other than to share your passions with others? To anyone out there who has struggled with mental illness throughout their life, know that you are not crazy or weird and that getting help is key to a better life. It’s scary to talk about it with others, but it’s also the best feeling once you know someone has heard you and is ready to help you. I kept everything I felt year after year, inside and not even my parents knew what was going on- all they knew was that I was constantly agitated and angry and detached- until one night, junior year, I couldn’t take it anymore and wrote a three paged letter to them describing everything; I left it on their nightstand. So, if you’re not comfortable talking about it to people for the first time, write a letter or talk to someone impartial. No one can help you unless you help yourself first.
Have a beautiful day everyone!