I was watching one of my favorite TV programs, CBS Sunday Morning where host Jane Pauley, announced that she suffers from bipolar disorder. Just weeks before, our beloved Michelle Obama announced that she suffered from low grade depression. A lot of folk knew about Jane Pauley, but not the former first lady. She is the most admired woman in America, so when she spoke women listened. The quiet whispers have become a loud conversation.
Hair stylists, new moms, investment bankers, single women and frontline health workers are all discussing how to treat depression especially among black women where it is still considered a taboo topic. Unfortunately, it has also contributed to an increase in suicides for all women.
There is no doubt that the global pandemic has contributed to the uptick in depression related symptoms. Women are experiencing mood disorders like anxiety, loss of interest, isolation, fatigue, and feeling overwhelmed at alarming rates.
Further complicating the issue is the current political and racial environment where women are just exhausted and worn down.
The risk factors involved include everything from a link to increased diabetes, heart disease, and an inability to make decisions and act on important issues.
“Too often, black and brown women try to muscle their way through depression and anxiety on their own,” says Erica Richards, Chair and Medical Director of the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Health at Sibley Memorial Hospital. This can be a mistake. What you really need is someone to help you sort out what you’re going through and provide support and treatment options.
The most important thing we can do is to discuss the symptoms of depression loudly. Take off the superwoman cape, erase the frozen smile, and discuss the signs and symptoms earnestly. I Am Dunn Talking...