There is a saying that we all have three faces. The first face, you show to the world. The second face, you show to your close friends and your family. The third face, you never show anyone. It is the truest reflection of who you are.
Whether the latter is true or not is another question. However, those suffering from depression, know very well that there is a lot hidden behind one’s smile.
Depression is an actual health condition, which can leave people feeling down for days or weeks or even years. Some people see it as a weakness and do not actually think it’s a Health condition. It is a real illness, which everyone will experience at least once in his or her lifetime. You cannot just snap out of it and pull yourself together as some may say as it is not as simple as that.
If you are studying at the moment and believe you do have depression or anxiety, then this is what you should do:
- The first thing is to acknowledge that you do need to get help and lessen that heavy burden on your shoulders
- Do a quick research on your university’s website and request an appointment through the online application for an appointment with a well-being team member. You should get a confirmation for a date soon
- Visit the student union hub and ask to see a disability adviser or just pop to one of the drop-in’s appointment
- Once you are able to see the disability adviser, you must be honest and tell them how you feel and how depression or anxiety is affecting your uni work or day-to-day routines. Please do not hold back, they are experienced and professional in this sector.
- Your adviser then will write up a reasonable adjustment Plan, which will be done alongside yourself. The reasonable adjustment plan basically shows your condition and how it affects you. It will list recommended support and reasonable adjustments for you, such as:
- attendance if you’re unable to attend on some days, then the staff will be made aware that It is because of your condition
- Seminars, lectures-if there’s any help you need or any adjustments that need to be put into plan to help you
- Exams-if being in a large crowded room affects you, you could be placed in a smaller group for the exam
- Assignments-allowing flexibility around deadlines
- In the meantime, you will also be able to see someone from the well-being team, healthcare worker or a counsellor on a weekly basis
This may all vary depending on universities or the severity of your condition and how it affects you. Understandably, it will not make depression or anxiety disappear, and unfortunately, there is no magic powder to do that either. But it will definitely help you to carry on with your course without having to worry that you will drop out or be withdrawn from the course while you are fighting one of the hardest challenges in life. You do not need to suffer in silence or be ashamed or scared to ask for help.
Depression is not you, it is not who you are. You are not crazy; you are more than normal. Remember why you wanted to go to university in the first place. You can complete your course and hopefully it will be worth it one day. So you must get up, no matter how hard it is and take one step at a time, even if it means putting your feet on the ground from your bed, writing any word count amount for your assignment or even going out for a walk. But for now, you should give yourself a break and be proud of how far you have come.