Advice

Go To Guide For Surviving Seasonal Depression

It’s November in NY. Those bastards made us trade an hour for sunlight again. The homeless people are beginning to pack more coats and look for better places to hang themselves. The leaf’s have changed and so did your ex’s relationship status since cuffing season started. By the time you get off work it’s dark. You spent your savings living it up over the summer so you shuffle home to your tiny room in your tiny apt where your things surround you like an Ikea manufactured Egyptian tomb.

It’s better than sitting in the kitchen or living room where your roommates, inevitably named something forgettable like “Claire”, “Mark” or “Tom”, can bitch to you about their jobs or why their yoga instructor’s been pissing them off. You moved here to live your dreams, they moved here to become your nightmare. It’s the only common ground you share.

You crawl into bed with your work clothes still on and briefly entertain the idea of getting a dog so you have something warm to come home to this winter until you remember Claire’s ever growing list of allergies. Your OkCupid date canceled but it’s cool because that’s something your Netflix account would never do. You check your phone to see if anyone’s contacted you but it’s just an alert that you’re crazy aunt is trying to tag you in something benign on Facebook again.

All is lost. Winter is coming and you can’t even afford HBO Go to get that Game Of Thrones reference. Seasonal depression is here again, the only friend willing to take the subway just to sit in your room and ignore Claire with you.

Don’t worry. Those of us with year round crippling depression have been anxiously waiting for you. We may not have the answers but we have the sympathy that only seems to come to people who hate themselves too much for self-preservation. That said, here’s 3 easy tips for beating the blues until it’s safe to chill outside again.

1. LEAVE THE HOUSE

I’m putting this at #1 because it’s the most important and that’s coming from someone with the utmost empathy i.e. a diagnosed major depressive disorder with agoraphobia. NYC apartments can make a hermit out of the best of us. It’s too easy to hide from the endless hustle and bustle of the city that never sleeps by well – staying home and sleeping. That’s why it’s so important to force yourself out. Even if it’s just getting something to snack on in one of my aforementioned 5 Brooklyn Coffee Shops That Make You Want To Kill Yourself.

I suggest going to an open mic. Check out Badslava for your comprehensive sign up list on either coast. I can’t speak for LA but the NYC open mic is the home of the nervous breakdown. You can pick a music mic – where some bro fresh off Tinder strums the only 4 open chords he knows on an acoustic guitar while bellowing out his pain at running out of pabst money. You can pick a comedy mic and watch a middle aged man have a nervous breakdown and ramble off his entertainment credits as a self defense mechanism. An extra in 4 SEPARATE PORN MOVIES!? Wow. Finally, something to write home about! Or you can pick spoken word and watch an angry woman studies major lament how her new found independence from daddy’s bank account impedes on her navigation of the dating scene. Either way, these are your people. Just hope you catch them in a manic episode instead of depressive. This shit is contagious as hell.

2. JOIN A GYM

Even if you’re not going to use it for anything more than walking at the slowest possible pace while watching your favorite TV show – this will help you achieve #1. You could be the fattest lazy in the world but it’s still more healthy and rewarding than the other NYC night life option –  bars. I recently began lifting weights. The pain and exhaustion lasts as long as a hangover and I didn’t call my ex threatening to kill myself if they don’t come over? Sign me up!

Places like Crunch and Planet Fitness are only $10 a month. I suggest Planet Fitness because it’s 24 hours and they have free pizza on Mondays. Plus, no one there is taking themselves seriously so you’re safe to loaf miserably while going exactly minus 1 mile an hour on the recumbent bike and enjoying your pocket full of free tootsie rolls. It’s the gym that doesn’t judge! Just make sure you don’t accidentally spot yourself in a mirror.

That’s the depression telling you that you look like Jim Carrey’s face in The Mask on a bloated sea mammal corpse, so don’t worry. Self hate is what happens when you have good enough taste to ignore those motivational posters with a positive saying over a beach with a serene sunset. After all, those somehow also make you feel like a bloated sea mammal stuck on a sand bar, waiting peacefully for your time to starve. Honestly if Claire puts one more up in the shared space you’re suicidal thoughts will turn homicidal anyway. What a relief!

3. SEEK PROFESSIONAL HELP

Therapy works and it’s just if not more important than going to your other doctor when you can’t get rid of a yeast infection or break out with herpes around your mouth. I was too cool to open up to one at first too, but it turns out you can switch until you find one you like and it’s Brooklyn so anyone from a polite maternal older woman, to a Hesidic Jew with an awkwardly misshapen bulge in his khakis, to a heavily tatted up hipster is available. Check out PsychologyToday.com’s Find a Therapist. Just put in your zipcode and insurance or lack there of and scroll through the head-shots for your potential savior.

Let’s face it. Suicide isn’t cool anymore. It’s as passé as JNCO jeans. The heroin epidemic and Meth scourge and endless war on terrorism snubbed it out. With a new mass shooting everyday no news channel is going to pick up your Kurt Cobain wannabe cry for help. You’ll probably just get one more social media post and lauded as a pussy by your friends.

Grow up. It’s 2017. Trump’s in office. It’s pretty basic to be depressed. What’s not basic is getting off your ass and doing something about it. After all, we need all the taxpayers we can get if we’re going to afford Trump’s America! Speaking of which, 1-800-273-8255 is the National Suicide Prevention Hotline. Just don’t mind the time inevitably spent on hold. This is capitalism during the holidays, even depression is a competitive sport.

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Tiana Miller

Tiana Miller

One gnarly dude, man.