Posted in Of Quotations

Of Depression and Life


That’s the thing I want to make clear about depression: It’s got nothing at all to do with life. In the course of life, there is sadness and pain and sorrow, all of which, in their right time and season, are normal — unpleasant, but normal. Depression is an altogether different zone because it involves a complete absence: absence of affect, absence of feeling, absence of response, absence of interest. The pain you feel in the course of a major clinical depression is an attempt on nature’s part (nature, after all, abhors a vacuum) to fill up the empty space. But for all intents and purposes, the deeply depressed are just the walking, waking dead. – Elizabeth Wurtzel, Prozac Nation


Writer, Blogger, Kate Bush Fanatic

10 thoughts on “Of Depression and Life

  1. Amrita, have you read Wurtzel’s “Bitch: in Praise of Difficult Women” and “More, Now, Again: a Memior of Addiction”? Those two books left lasting impressions on me, both for different reasons. (I can’t figure out how to do italics for book titles in comments BTW) More, Now, Again has this crazy effect like you’ll start to read faster and faster and not pause for sentence breaks. You’ll read manically like you are on the same speed she writes about. It is powerful and honest and raw. My dad read it and felt the same. Bitch has chapters on Hillary Rodham Clinton (she calls her “the blonde in the bleachers) and the chapter that stuck with me most, on Nicole Brown Simpson. Here’s a quote from “Bitch” “I think, quite frankly, that the world simply does not care for the complicated girls, the ones who seem too dark, too deep, too vibrant, too opinionated, the ones who are so intriguing that new men fall in love with them every day, at every meal where there’s a waiter, in every taxi and on every train they board, in any instance where someone can get to know them just a little bit, just enough to get completely gone. But most men in the end don’t quite have the stomach for that much person.” If you haven’t I highly recommend it!

      1. You won’t regret it. I read “Bitch” first and then the one on addition. I actually haven’t read Prozac Nation but I want to.

      2. A lot of people say it is too whiny and self-indulgent. I found the film, which I watched years ago, quite disturbing too. I guess you have to be in a similar mindset a bit to appreciate it. But the above quote, and several others I found on Goodreads, show that there is merit in it after all, and people (i.e. critics) should not just dismiss it as “bad” or “unreadable” literature.

  2. Powerful and so true. After experiencing this vacuum, it really can only be described as such. A void in which all feeling is absent, resulting in something that resembles the walking dead in terms of passion and emotion. I found that if I dug deep enough in this state, feeling can be found. I was actually feeling resentment toward feelings, which is a feeling. This discovery made me realize the void was not as empty as I thought. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Having suffered from a state of depression a few years ago I can honestly say there is nothing more sobering than waking up feeling as though you finally have a purpose. It was like being pulled from a nightmare

    1. It is, Andy. People talk about how much we need today in order to be happy. I think being depressed can help you gain perspective over what is truly important in life. Even if most people think we have too much, we need too much to be happy, I am always amazed by how some people need just a little bit of love, a little bit of resolve, a little bit of direction and determination, to do SO much. As long as you can work out where you want to go, where you want to be, you can handle almost anything.

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