Depressed? Get a Cow.

Depression. Who hasn’t been depressed. I know I have. According to various medical-related organizations, there are seven (or eight) types of depression: Major Depressive Disorder (periodic symptoms); Persistent Depressive Disorder (long term, chronic depression); Postpartum Depression/Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder; Bipolar Depression; Seasonal Affective Disorder; Psychotic Depression (includes hallucinations and delusions); and Atypical Depression (situational depression).

Depression is serious. And it is painful – for those going through it and for those who live with those who suffer. Depression can be due to genetic vulnerability, chemical imbalance or situational circumstance. Treatments vary but can include medication, electrical stimulation/shock and counseling.

I watched a TED Talk a few weeks ago on depression by author Johann Hari (13 million views). His presentation is interesting and enlightening about causation and cure. See https://www.ted.com/talks/johann_hari_this_could_be_why_you_re_depressed_or_anxious?language=en One of the vignettes related a sad, disabled farmer in a small Cambodian village and how his fellow villagers addressed his depression — and made him flourish — with a cow. There are a various ways we can help meet the deep, underlying psychological needs of our fellow man/woman. But most of all it requires understanding, compassion and knowledge that at one time or another – we have all been in the same boat.

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