Stanford Peace of Mind advocates for greater dialogue and discussions about mental health on campus.
During my senior year at Stanford (2003-04), I was diagnosed with depression. I struggled to stay interested in anything but sleeping and spent hours crying without knowing why. Added to the sense of hopelessness were feelings of shame and embarrassment — how could I possibly feel sad on the Farm? Everyone else around me (I thought) was accomplished and happy, reveling in the California sunshine and the dynamic academic environment. What was wrong with me?
According to a recent psychology study, it may be possible to prevent depression in some adolescent girls at-risk for the disease through attentional bias training, which trains individuals with certain biases toward specific stimuli to remove themselves from their biases.
I want to share the resources that I’ve used–both to commend Stanford for its supportive environment and to share with other students that may be floundering how I’ve made my way through school.
Sometime within the past week, I got derailed. On Sunday evening, I felt an overwhelming desire to crumple into my roommate’s futon and devolve into a hot mess of tears. In the time since then, I’ve had an overwhelming sense of sadness — not overwhelming in that I don’t feel happy, but in the sense that even when I have high highs, like seeing Mae Jemison, being accepted into Sophomore College and finalizing housing preferences for next year with my wonderful “drawmies,” I return to this low state of emptiness and confusion.
It does to all the elite university students like you who have commented on and forwarded the letter, thanking the nameless author, saying, “Holy cow, I thought I was the only one feeling this way.” What a goofy society we’ve made for ourselves. We’ve got all these people walking around feeling lonely and depressed, thinking they’re the only ones feeling lonely and depressed.
According to a study released in December last year, spending time on social networking sites can actually lead to increased feelings of loneliness.