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Depression relief: Why standing-up matters

Sometimes, getting vertical is the hardest thing to do when we you are depressed. Just getting up – off the couch or out of bed – is a major accomplishment. Getting up and out the door is monumental.shutterstock_224309536

In my last depression, I forced myself to do this. I knew that shutting myself in would only make the depression worse. Of course, I had the fear that if someone saw me out and about they would accuse me of faking my depression – even though I had lost 20 pounds and looked like hell.

Once, I was spotted by a co-worker at Marshall’s. I liked going there because I could be around people but wasn’t considered odd if I didn’t speak or make eye contact with anyone.

Dammit, I thought, she’s going to go back to the office and tell everyone that I’m faking it and shopping. But I kept shopping.  I just mindlessly dragged hangers across the rack, pretending I was actually look and could actually afford something.

I went to the gym. I would go later in the morning to avoid the early-bird over-achievers and stay-at-home moms who came in after dropping the kids off at school. I didn’t talk to anyone. I didn’t make eye contact with anyone. I was like a junkie trying to cop some endorphins.

At noon, I went to a very large 12-Step meeting, where I could be around people. I didn’t speak and I avoided eye contact. I had one friend and she accompanied me to Dunkin’ Donuts drive-thru and the meeting everyday. Then I went home for the rest of the day, where I prayed my depression wouldn’t wear off on my daughter.

Horizontal is the enemy. Fight it. Push yourself and keep pushing yourself to stay horizontal a bit longer everyday. Find somewhere you can go where you can be around other humans but aren’t expected to talk or make eye-contact. It may sound silly, but it’s a start.

And you have to start somewhere.

Woman standing image available from Shutterstock.

Depression relief: Why standing-up matters

Christine Stapleton

Christine Stapleton has been a journalist for 35 years. She is now an investigative reporter for The Palm Beach Post. In 2006, began writing a blog for PsychCentral called Depression on My Mind. Her latest blog, Addiction Matters, draws on her 19 years of sobriety and her coverage of the drug treatment industry in South Florida.

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APA Reference
Stapleton, C. (2015). Depression relief: Why standing-up matters. Psych Central. Retrieved on October 21, 2020, from


Last updated: 13 Jul 2015
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