Christmas Depression

Christmas time is the most likely time of the year to experience depression. The suicide rate is higher during December than any other month, which tells us that Christmas depression should be taken quite seriously. Depression at Christmas time can be triggered by a multitude of things, such as losses, failures, and loneliness. These elements are exacerbated this time of year. People who have had deaths in the family or have experienced divorce or the loss of a child are more prone to depression, especially during the holiday season.

Not all holiday depression has anything to do with loss or failure or death, or even anything obvious. Sometimes people tend to just get depressed around the holidays. Yet those without an obvious “reason” feel that they really shouldn’t be depressed and are least likely to reach out for help. It’s as though people who have experienced trauma have more of a “right” to experience holiday depression than those who appear to have everything that could need or want.The onset of Christmas depression can sneak up on you in numerous forms. You may simply start to feel more tired than normal or start sleeping through the alarm. You may procrastinate on holiday shopping, even when those events that require your participation are only a few days away.You may start to feel randomly irritable, or snap at people without provocation. You may start to feel disconnected with the world and withdraw from those around you, even children. These are all signs that you are experiencing at least some form of holiday depression, and warning signs that you may need help in dealing with whatever is making you feel this way.

Christmas Depression

I know I have experienced depression at Christmas, although it was not sadness, rather irritation and anger about all things Christmassy. It would start around mid November and not really end until a few days into the New Year. It made me feel such a grinch and even seemed unchristian. After all Christmas is when I was supposed to be celebrating God’s greatest gift to mankind, so there was a certain amount of guilt attached to my feelings as well.

I have always viewed depression as a self-indulgence and would give myself a good talking to and went and cleaned out a cupboard or washed the floor of did something so that I would have a feeling of accomplishment afterwards and it did help a little. So far this Christmas season has been the best I have experienced in a long time although I am starting to miss my sons and could get a bit tearful as the holiday progresses, although I know I will speak to them via telephone on Christmas day. It is just not feasible due to distance and weather to get together as a family at this time of year, so I see them in the summer.

I hope that I will be sensitive enough to reach out to someone who may be depressed during this season, if you are that person reading this, contact me or some other blogging friend, or call someone, don’t think that no one else will understand.

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9 Responses

  1. Merry Christmas, Vic.

  2. I’m a new Over 50 Blogger, so I stopped in to say Merry Christmas! Have a great 2008!

  3. We all experience depression at one time or another. This Christmas has been very different for me, as we eliminated many of our traditions because we are going on holidays. I can’t say I was depressed, but there was more that the special Christmas spirit was lacking.

    Merry Christmas, my friend. May the Light of Christmas shine in your heart and home all year long.

    Blessings,
    Mary

  4. Did you know that the X in Xmas stands for Christ?

    I am not a Catholic by any means, but I do feel there is some higher power… although he/she seems to have abandoned me this season. I feel quite bereft, but I thank you for your sweet words of comfort.

  5. Hello and Merry Christmas, Vic. I came by yesterday but couldn’t comment then as I couldn’t get the comments things to open on any of my fav blogs for a while so I decided to wait and re-visit my favs today in hopes the comments thing would work for me – and as you can see -it is!

    Color me in as one who has often had issues with holiday depression -sometimes as a terrible sadness and on other occasions, as you pointed out, in being just irritable for no real reason and often that comes from my over-extending myself, allowing my system to get overly tired too I think. I’m glad you put that aspect in your post as many people may get to that point and not realize it is a depression issue. Good post – as always. I would be very surprised, actually shocked, if your posts weren’t always of this high caliber.

  6. I don’t like Xmas…always feel a bit depressed…but anyhow we had a nice quiet day hubby and I (and the dog)…so hope the year to come will bring you light and love and everything you wish…I ‘ll change the link to your blog…don’t want to lose you !
    all the best dear one…

  7. I’m glad you had a great Christmas! I always feel the winter blues come around the end of January.

  8. Christmas has always been difficult for us because my father died during that time. Mom never fully recovered and the sadness was passed down to children and grandchildre. We cope but it can be difficult

  9. yes i suffer with depression but christmas is a sad time for me as my sister died on the 3 january my father died the 1 january so a sad time i hope and pray your doing well and hope we can stay in touch God bless

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