Depression Marathon Blog

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Diagnosed with depression 19 years ago, I lost the life I once knew, but in the process re-created a better me. I am alive and functional today because of my dog, my treatment team, my sobriety, and my willingness to re-create myself within the confines of this illness. I hate the illness, but I'm grateful for the person I've become and the opportunities I've seized because of it. I hope writing a depression blog will reduce stigma and improve the understanding and treatment of people with mental illness. All original content copyright to me: etta. Enjoy your visit!

Friday, July 17, 2009


Perhaps I mentioned this just a few days ago. I know I've written about it in the past. It's disinterest, and it is one of the subtle, invisible symptoms of this illness.

Disinterest, unlike many of depression's manifestations, is quiet and sneaky. It hangs in the background--a backdrop for depression's more visible symptoms. It is noticeable only when I notice the absence of other states--the absence of interest, the absence of concern, the absence of opinion, joy, anger, or pain. Disinterest is not as blatant as the tears of sadness. It doesn't rattle the soul like anxiousness. It doesn't send me to bed like fatigue. Disinterest is more subtle than all that. Absence marks its presence.

Disinterest works behind the scenes. It's the reason phone calls have not been returned. Talking requires interest in what you, or even I, have to say. Disinterest keeps the running magazines closed, the e-mails unread, and the television channels jumping. It's hard to focus or care when one can't focus and doesn't care. That's disinterest.

Life, when disinterested, lacks meaning, direction, or purpose. The body craves relief. Drinking, drugs, self-harm, psychosis, sex...anything which alters the monotony is preferable to the disinterested state. Feeling anything, we think, is better than feeling nothing. The body, the brain need that relief. It may be a subtle, invisible symptom, but disinterest often leads to very visible scars of relief.


Stumbling, Falling, Dreaming & Flying said...

I can really understand this. Hope you're doing okay..

Kim said...


I really appreciated your post about disinterest. I haven't realized that that was what was bothering me the last week. I just don't care. Well, I do, maybe, but at the same time I don't, so..
I'm suffering from depression too, only in "episodes of moderate degree" (plus some other stuff one can put a name one).
I'm amazed that you're able to write about it. I think for me, those depressive episodes often start with me becoming disinterested, and a vicious cycle starts. I've just discovered your blog and am looking forward to read more from you!

etta said...

Welcome Kim, and thank you both for your comments. It always helps me to know there are others out there who get it.
I especially appreciate that you recognized disinterest, as this was a difficult post to write. How does one write about the absence of something? I'm glad my words rang true for both of you. I hope it helps to know you are not suffering alone.

Drew said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
etta said...

Dear Drew-
I deleted your comment because I don't appreciate promotional links included in comments. It makes anything you say in your comment ring hollow. Please feel free to leave any genuine comments, minus promotional links, on this or any other post in the future.

Anonymous said...

Wow- I thought I was the only one who understood how this felt. Tried treatment for depression, but the anti-depressants made me extremely suicidal. And I dont drink or do drugs. I dont feel depressed, just dont really want to do anything - ever. Thank you.

Blog said...

What can you do to combat disinterest? Well written and explained, by the way :-)