Post-break up depression can be hard to kick, but you are not alone and this is not the end of the world
In honor of Mental Health Month (May), we sat down with Dr. Ayodola Adigun, an Adult Psychiatrist Resident at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, to talk about how to deal with the ever-difficult depression that can come after a break up.
Dr. Ayodola Adigun will also be starting a fellowship in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry at Yale University this June. She talks to us about the signs of a depressive episode and how to handle it, conquer it, and eventually move on.
Read her article below, and don’t forget that this is not the end of the world, and you are not alone!
Has it been 2 weeks since your 3 year relationship went down in the dumps, and you still don’t know how to get your life?
Is your mood lower than the approval rates for your not so favorite political leader?
No longer hanging out with friends?
None of your favorite foods taste the same?
Feeling guilty for your relationship turmoil?
Have no energy to do a damn thing?
Sleeping seems like a lost cause?
Does your mind feel like a foggy day?
If you answered yes to any of these questions, you’re most likely experiencing a depressive episode.
A depressive episode is qualified by a depressed mood or a loss in interest, accompanied with 5 or more symptoms of: poor sleep, low energy, poor concentration, the feeling that you’re moving slower or faster than normal, feelings of guilt, changes in appetite, and/or suicidal thoughts.
This isn’t you!
Now that you have realized you are depressed, here are some tips to get out of your funk, and reclaim your life again!
Some good cardio can increase your serotonin, dopamine, epinephrine, and endorphin levels. Not only will you feel good during and after your workout, but let’s be real – everyone loves a revenge body.
2. Watch funny movies
Welcome in laughing again and spend time around positive people/places that elicit more smiling. Plus, no one likes frowning wrinkles.
Save the cobwebs for Halloween and get to know your happy place again. Release some of that pent up stress and frustration in a healthy, self-satisfying way.
4. Mirror cry
Yep, it sounds exactly like what it is. Look at the mirror while you are having one of your crying episodes. Not so attractive, right? You’ll soon not want to see yourself in that emotional state again. But cry, yes. Cry it out. Crying is good.
5. Pick up the phone
You may feel embarrassed with your feelings, but remember that you are not alone. Talk to family and friends and welcome any and all support that carries you to a better place.
6. Explore a new skill
You may feel hopeless, helpless, or even worthless, but learning how to play the ukulele is damn cool. Find optimism in welcoming a new learning set that can make you feel like the unique person you may have forgotten you were.
7. Praise yourself
YOU ROCK! You are awesome with or without an intimate relationship. Remind yourself daily with post-its around the house how truly fantastic you are.
8. Dress it up
Look good. Feel good. If you feel like shit, don’t let your apparel show it. Incorporate bright colors, new cuts, and new selfies for Instagram to awe and inspire yourself and your followers.
Whether it is just a walk through the park or a last minute trip to Cuba, get out, go out, and explore new or old environments for a new and better you.
10. Seek Help
Still feeling like life isn’t worth living anymore and nothing seems to make you feel better? Make an appointment with a mental health practitioner to get the best help possible. Your life matters, and seeking help does not equate to defeat.
If you or a loved one is having suicidal thoughts please call:
Suicide Hotline: 1-888-NYC-WELL
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline Phone: 1-800-273-TALK
Words by Dr. Ayodola Adigun