Yes it is interesting - thanks Dollit. I found the comments even more interesting.
I do sometimes wonder about the question am I pleased I am a depressive? Now of course this, like all such hypotheticals, is a stupid question! And of course when I am ill the answer is very simple! (No - in case anyone was wondering ).
But with these reservations I do muse about it sometimes. Having depression has led my life in a very different direction, or different directions. Obviously I start with experiences directly related to the illness like mental hospitals - I don't mean this was a good experience but it certainly broadened my outlook! Indeed as a whole having depression has I think made me more empathic and tolerant.
And beyond that my depression has led me to places which I would never have gone if I had not had it - some bad, some good. There have been far more dimensions to my life than I would have had without the depression.
I don't think I would go so far as to say, like some of the people who commented on the article, that depression has been a positive in my life. But I certainly wouldn't say it has been wholly negative either. And now I am discovering yet another new dimension with Service User stuff and places like this forum.
I suppose that what I am saying is that I do now accept that depression is part of me and I am 'proud to be a depressive' (a slogan that lacks any sort of ring ). I certainly won't accept any stigma or s##t about it.
I curse my bipolarity at times - it takes over and saps me of energy and ideas or makes me incoherent and alarming and even in the well periods, as now, I find that I easily tire and neglect myself.
In another way I spend a lot of time feeling suicidal, making plans just in case, etc and so even when ill I try to get the most from my experiences and friendships. I have recently told someone that I love them and had the joy of having that person's love for me confirmed and that has made a close friendship better and even more substantial. If I love you I tell you today because I may not be around tomorrow.
I can't do real work anymore - and by that I mean going out and supporting myself and having a job description. Instead I do community based voluntary work and the guys I get to work with are amazing. I have learned not just about policing and where they fit in with crime but how they can change communities for the better. I have my ideas adopted and used in their work (gets a bit frustrating when the seniors get the credit but we all know who came up with the idea!) which changes things in my community.
So if I was well I'd have a high-powered well paid job and be doing very well thank you but I'd miss out on the friendships I've made from my voluntary work and a lot of the people in my life would never hear me say that I love them.