Showing posts with label depression. Show all posts
Showing posts with label depression. Show all posts

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Rat Racing

Warning: I'm about to launch into some post-grad, twentysomething-crisis whining.

In February, I was hired on as a temp-to-perm at a big corporate company. I was damn happy because a steady job with benefits seemed just out of my reach. When I started, I found that there was another temp in my department. I was a bit deflated to learn that he'd already been working for 7 months as a temp to perm, but I pushed some of my doubts aside--I sat near the HR department and saw that new people were being hired all the time. I figured I just had to wait my turn.

Months have gone by and I've become incredibly disillusioned and bored. I'm no fan of corporate culture, and I'm continuously stressed out because I never know which project I'm given is going to be my last. But I've been sticking with it because no matter how shitty I feel, the job is paying the bills. I have been applying to other jobs, as I want some stability and need insurance hardcore, but noting is panning out. The internship is the exact thing I've been looking for, but the organization is new and has no money as of yet to hire me on full time, though they've expressed interest.

Recently the other temp in my department quit--he was simply sick of doing the same job for a year straight that is obviously integral to the operation of the department. He would inquire every once and awhile to see if the company would be interested in hiring him permanently, but they'd also turn him down. After he left, I found myself sitting in a situation where maybe, just maybe, I could move into his position, where the temping would be more stable, or perhaps I'd even get hired full time.

It's not going to happen. I found out today that they already hired someone new. Not as a temp, but as a full-time, fully benefited, employee. It doesn't matter that I'm already familiar with the work or that I've been here for six months. They're not going to hire me. I asked about my job performance, and I was told that I'm doing excellent work. So I don't know what it is--maybe they think I'm too young and am therefore more likely to move on sooner than someone else? Or is it something else?

Either way, I feel like crap. I check the job listings and nothing seems promising. My self-esteem has hit the rocks. I've developed some chronic health conditions since graduating, but have put off going to the doctor because I can't afford it, and I'm going to need to keep putting it off. Plus, I'm still endlessly stuck in temp limbo--who knows when they'll not need me here any longer?

Monday, May 07, 2007

Depression and Art

I’ve been enjoying Planet Karen for quite awhile now and this comic was no exception:

In fact, this comic really affected me, for a lot of reasons.

I felt prompted to say something, so I clicked over to the Girl-wonder.org boards and wrote

Today's comic is heart wrenchingly beautiful. I'm going through something
similar right now. Depression is simply awful.

And Betty hit it all right on the head:

I'm really impressed that you could use that to make a comic, Karen. When I'm
like that it's usually a battle to brush my teeth. I really appreciate that you
don't flinch back from talking about mental health. I think it's a bit of a
taboo, which doesn't really help you when you're already feeling like you're
alone and isolated.
Depression is hard to discuss, and is even more difficult to capture in art. There are not enough heartfelt attempts out there, and god knows I can’t write about it. Depression is even more difficult to respond to. I was taken aback by some of the other comments in the forum that “there’s nothing beautiful about depression” (I understand the sentiment, but who was saying that it is?) and that all that depressed folks need to do is to add some omega-3 to their diets. As though, for many of us, we haven’t tried everything imaginable: drastic diet changes, yoga, St. John’s Wort, anti-depressants, therapy. I’m not saying that any of those options aren’t helpful--they are. It’s just that treating depression is a process; there’s no quick fix available. Suffering from it is hard enough, but it’s exacerbated because depression is taboo, and too often those who haven’t or aren’t dealing with it make flippant (though well meaning) comments that add insult to injury.

We need more people to unflinchingly address this issue. We need people like Karen.