Depression Isn’t One-Size-Fits-All

How depression is a bit different for everyone

Carolyn Riker
3 min readJan 28, 2019


Photo by Kat Love on Unsplash

Depression is a hairy beast lurking in the catacombs of heart, mind and body. It can also be a masked smile that laughs and nods politely at appropriate and inappropriate times.

For some it is as if walking with 18 tons of sludge and still wearing perky purple sunglasses while performing all those normal activities — and yet rarely anyone notices the sadness that lies just beneath the dark blue horizon.

Depression can consume like the densest fog and thoughts can trail off midsentence.

Depression can also distract and be a masterful comedian to downplay the anguish battering around inside of a colossal dungeon of internalize criticism.

Depression isn’t one-size-fits-all.

Depression is very real. On a macro view just look at our world and how wealth is unevenly distributed while homelessness is begging on the street. People are marginalized because of their skin color, gender choices, and religious beliefs. That’s depressing.

Bringing it closer to self we see how bullies scour the hallways of every single school pushing kids up against lockers — some schools don’t even have lockers because the drug use is so high; but that doesn’t stop kids from getting high to fight and deny the depression they hide.

Perhaps on an individual’s level, depression’s voices screams and shouts as well as weeps or stays extra quiet. It wears the comfort of sobriety and the shame when it doesn’t; neither one is right or wrong.

Depression grows just as much in meadowed fields or cemented long blocks of Wall Street’s monochromatic colors to survive.

There’s no way to romanticize depression as much as it can’t be chased away with advice and platitudes:

“Cheer up!”

“You’ve got so much going for you.”


“Snap out of it.”

“You’ve got no right being down.”

“Have you tried to exercise?”

Advice is often dismissive and patronizing because it is telling the person their depressed feelings are wrong. It can push



Carolyn Riker

Carolyn's latest book, The Colors I Hear, is now available!