I've been low for four months now. Reactive, I think: a new course involving 8-9 hours preparation for every hour delivered, leaving me drained after each session, plus anxiety over persistent unwellness awaiting diagnosis, on top of winter and the general sense of getting older. So it goes...
Anyway, yesterday afternoon one of my undergraduate students came to see me about late coursework. I knew they'd been having difficulties but not the details. Unprompted, they hesitantly told me that they were chronically depressed, so I told them in outline of my 40 years of episodes. They immediately relaxed and said that I was the first grown up who'd ever come out as depressed: at last they had some sense that someone else knew what they were talking about.
I said that I thought depression was just another illness and that acknowledging it helped make it more ordinary and less stigmatising. And I said that because it's an illness, it's not an excuse, it's something that deserves support and compensation.
So, dear reader, why don't I generally tell my colleagues about my condition...?