Saturday, February 6, 2010

Depression Facebook Group

I can not tell you how excited I am about BE OPEN TO DEPRESSION & SHOW YOUR SUPPORT the support has been absolutely great. It has left me so humble, moved and so touched. If you haven't joined then please check it out it will blow your mind!

Here's some photo's of my Family getting in on the action.

Friday, February 5, 2010

FAIRE FROU FROU'S Valentine's Sale Up to 75% OFF

One of my Favourite Lingerie peeps are having well, a RIDICULOUS SALE! Up to 75% off...

For my readers I say "THAT IS AWESOME"

As a Business Coach I say "ARE YOU MAD"

If you would like a Va Va Voom Valentine's then check out Faire Frou Frou and you'll be all sorted they have a diverse range so you'll find something to suit I'm sure :)

Thursday, February 4, 2010


Just like we ALL know someone who has had Cancer & Heart Problems WE ALL know someone who suffers from Depression but chances are YOU DON'T KNOW!


We NEED to be open about this and we can SAVE LIVES!

Here's what we are going to do-

* Take a photo of yourself in a BRA or use mine :)
* Write BE OPEN TO DEPRESSION & SHOW YOUR SUPPORT on your Facebook, Twitter & Myspace status or Blog along with mine/your photo
* Send a message to EVERYONE and get them to do the same.
* Join our Facebook Group and tell your friends, you can even upload your photo there!

Lastly Amanda Cox and I say A BIG THANK YOU to Brava Lingerie & MJPhotography for your support :) Lingerie was donated by the LOVELY girls at Brava Lingerie & Photography was done by MJPhotography

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Understanding Depression Moving Forward

When I woke up on Australia Day to see Professor Patrick McGorry was made Australian of the Year for his dedication on the work he has done on Mental Illness, it was divine timing with our BE OPEN TO DEPRESSION AND SHOW YOUR SUPPORT Campaign that Amanda Cox and I are putting together. On the same day ironically my sister’s friend (who suffered from Depression) sadly Commit Suicide on that very day.

If we are going to combat Depression we ALL need to come together with a realistic and clear approach. Here are a few facts for you to think about-

Deaths due to Mental Illness is in the TOP 4 of Medical related deaths

Each one of these Epidemic Illnesses has Specialists in their field.

1. Heart Disease- General Cardiologists and Cardiac Surgeons
2. Arthritis & Musculoskeletal conditions- Rheumatologists
3. Cancer- Oncologists
4. Mental Illness- NOTHING. OK they have General Practitioners
5. Diabetes- Endocrinologist

Now I do not want to get into a GP debate however there is such a shortage of any GP’s let alone a good one. GP’s just don’t have the time or the knowledge to configure the right course of action for someone with Depression, so instead they put them on Antidepressants and organise no testing to see if it is Biological or Physiological (this determines that the right medication is prescribed) or no referrals to a Psychologist or any follow up.

According to new studies men and people who live in the Country are most at risk for being undiagnosed, so where do we go from here?

The Government needs to-

• Educate ALL GP’s through out the Country have a CLEAR protocol in which GP’s have to follow. With testing, referrals and follow ups.
• They already have the Rebates BUT

I don’t know about you but I have a hard time trying to get my head around what is available and what they have or should do, LET ALONE IF I ACTUALLY HAD DEPRESSION. It’s too confusing, especially if your mind is UNABLE to process information. They will put it in the too hard basket and too be honest I wouldn’t blame them.

If you have cancer-

• You have tests
• You see a Specialist
• You receive treatment
• You are closely monitored

It’s kept really simply because when you ARE SICK you do not need any other stress. You mind should be focusing on getting better, yes?

What I find the most frustrating is Mental Illness is totally treatable and those 48 million people who will commit suicide due to Mental Illness DO NOT HAVE TO DIE! It gives me shivers, it brings tears to my eyes and it makes me sick to my stomach. That it just DOESN’T have to be this way.


Disclaimer: This article was written from a personal opinion and I am NOT a qualified in psychology or counselling. If you do need assistance with emotions or mental health, to seek assistance from your GP immediately.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Textbook Answers to Understanding Depression

On my Road to Understanding Depression I have also been Inside the Mind of Depression. Today I am going to use the same questions from Inside the Mind of Depression BUT I am going to give you "The textbook answers" from the Experts over at SANE.

What causes Depression?

There are a number of possible causes of depression.
• Depression can be a reaction to a distressing situation like loss or stress (reactive depression). Some women experience depression following the birth of a child (post-natal depression).
• Depression can be part of an illness like bipolar disorder in which the person experiences extreme moods without any reason –very high and very-excited or very low and depressed.
• Depression can be unrelated to any outside cause, but associated with a chemical imbalance in the brain (endogenous depression). Sometimes the person may be affected so much that he or she experiences the symptoms of psychosis and is unable to distinguish what is real.
• Children and teenagers can also become depressed. This can show itself in different ways to depression in adults, and they are best helped by a doctor who is a specialist in this area.

Click here for the full report.

Why can’t you snap out of it?

Illness? Depression is an illness? Some may ask. Yes, depression is an illness. People do not choose depression. Depression causes a chemical imbalance in the brain, and thus people can't "snap out of it."
People with depression need treatment, just like people with other illnesses need treatment. But many people who have depression do not receive treatment because of the societal stigma that is associated with depression.
Many people think individuals with depression are weak. And that they are choosing to be depressed, or they are just acting. And thus should be able to "snap out of it."
Wrong. Wrong. Wrong. Wrong.
Not only is depression an illness that people cannot "snap out of," but untreated depression is also the number one cause for suicide.
Depression is a very serious mental illness that always needs to be treated
And it is highly treatable.

Click here for the full report.

How can stigma be reduced?

Respondents were optimistic that stigma could be reduced, with suggestions spread across a whole range of initiatives in the community. Tackling stigma in the media was seen as the most urgent priority (17%), reflecting the enormous influence of the media on community attitudes as a whole. The SANE StigmaWatch initiative was recognised by almost half of respondents as active in this area. Education about mental illness in schools and in the workplace, as well as in the general community, was also highlighted as an important ongoing measure to reduce stigma. An important barrier to stigma reduction is the fact that vilification of people with a disability including those who have a psychiatric disability because of mental illness – is not unlawful in Australia (except under Tasmanian legislation). While people cannot be publicly ridiculed because of their religion or sexual preference, journalists, advertising agencies and anyone else is free to mock and invite contempt for people
with a mental illness or any form of disability.

To move forward we must educate.

Click here for the full report.

Intimacy and mental illness how does it affect relationships?

* 51% of people with a mental Illness are in a relationship
* 49% are single
* 65% had some sexual contact in the last 12 months
* 35% Had no sexual contact.

Many people with a mental illness lead isolated, lonely lives, often having no partner or even friends to share their lives.
For many people with a mental illness, loneliness is compounded by a lack of physical intimacy – signs of affection such as hugs and kisses. This is a particularly harsh aspect of social exclusion.
People with a mental illness are far less likely to have sexual relationships than the general population, reflecting a more general difficulty in social relations.
People with a mental illness report poor support regarding sexual health, with a high number not receiving regular health checks such as pap smears, breast screening or prostate checks.

Click here for the full report.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Inside the Mind of Depression

On my road to understanding Depression I am rolling out a series of posts to raise awareness of Depression. In order to raise awareness I think we need to understand Depression. I asked a variety of people who DON'T have Depression "What questions would you ask to get a better understanding of Depression" and I have asked people who DO have Depression to answer them. Here is just one of the actual response.

1. What needs to change. And how can we help that process happen?

I think the views of depression need to change. I think for some people who’ve had no exposure to the issue it conjures up images of people sitting in a dark room drinking themselves into a coma or slitting their wrists or bouncing off padded walls. And that’s not the case. Everyday people deal with depression – whether for all of their lives or for a short period of time – and I think because of the stigma surrounding the issue they don’t speak out, which of course does nothing to let people know that all sorts of people go through it.

2. Why do/did you hide it?
I’ve hid and still do hide it because of the above. I am still very sensitive about the issue and don’t tell too many people what I’ve been through because I worry about what they’ll think of me. I think I feel this even more now that I’m in business for myself too. My reputation is a big deal these days and I worry that if people notice my mood or see my scars or hear from someone else that I have depression that they will not want to do business with me.

3. What triggered it for the first time or was it a series of events that led you to depression?
I really don’t know. I have been to a million doctors, psychiatrists, psychologists and counselors and haven’t found the answers. I’m fairly highly strung and my current counselor seems to think I suffer from PTSD due to living in a violent household growing up. I think there is more too it than that though. I’ve been through some traumatic events throughout my teenage years and even now as an adult which has had an accumulative effect with the PTSD. So, I suppose you could say it started with a violent father and was compounded by years of panic attacks, bullying, low self confidence and even bad breakups.

4. Why is it so paralysing?

The way you feel when you’re depressed takes over everything else going on. It becomes bigger than your job, your family, your friends and even your appearance. It can leave you crying in a heap unable to talk to anyone or see anyone, wondering why you feel how you do, or it can leave you completely numb and unable to find enjoyment in anything anymore. It leaves you feeling worthless and incapable of doing day to day things. Even doing the dishes is too hard. I’ve heard people call it laziness, but that’s just not it. When you feel that way, looking at a pile of dishes is like standing at the bottom of a mountain and looking up at just how far you have to climb. And it’s too hard, so you walk away.

5. Why can't you just snap out it?
You can’t snap out of it because it’s a medical issue. You can’t snap out of cancer or a broken leg and this is no different. I feel that people often don’t think depression is as serious as things like cancer but it really is. And it IS a medical issue. There is a big difference between feeling down every now and then and depression – the difference is a mental health condition that needs serious attention and often medical help. You can’t just snap out of something like that.

6. Intimacy and mental illness does it affect relationships?
Mental health absolutely does affect intimacy. When you’re depressed, you lose interest in most things and that includes sex. Not only do you find it hard to get close to someone, the thought of having sex just doesn’t seem interesting or enjoyable at all. You have zero sex drive and it can have such a negative impact on your relationship.

7. Why do you think there is such a stigma?

I suppose the stigma surrounding depression comes from all of the things relating to depression that are so hard to talk about – alcohol and drug abuse, self harm, suicide, etc. People are afraid of what they don’t understand.

8. What's the difference between just being sad and depression
Everyone gets sad. That’s not what depression is. You might get sad because you’re not happy with your job or you’ve had a fight or you’re feeling sick and it’s impacting your mood. The difference is that there’s usually a reason you can pinpoint for feeling that way when you’re just sad. That’s not the case with depression. I spent years in counselors’ offices with them asking me why I feel like I do and only being able to answer ‘I don’t know.’ It’s incredibly frustrating to not know WHY you feel like crap. You only know that you feel that way and you wish you didn’t. People get over sadness. When you’re feeling down for more than a couple of weeks and it starts affecting your day to day life, there’s a good chance it’s depression.

If you feel anything like this PLEASE contact SANE 1800 18 SANE (7263)


Disclaimer: This article was written from a personal opinion and I am NOT a qualified in psychology or counselling. If you do need assistance with emotions or mental health, to seek assistance from your GP immediately.