Ben Leander Willgruber | Visual Designer and Writer

Quick Thought Tuesday | Depression

For the longest time, I thought I knew what being depressed feels like. Turns out I had no idea until the beginning of the year, after coming home from Berlin and swearing off marihuana, I got to know a new side of me I didn’t really want to know. I am feeling better now, and I am in no way saying that what I experienced was a ‘depression’, but I believe it was depressive symptoms, for sure. I wrote down a couple of lines to cautiously remind myself of how good I normally have it. Here I go…



I didn’t know how much smiling could hurt until it was the last thing I wanted to do.

I wanted to scream and shout or cry.

What I didn’t want was talk to anybody.

So, I smiled and pretended everything was fine.

On the inside I felt like I lost a little part of myself, not knowing if I’d ever find it again.



When I was in this dark place, I had a really tough time. Eventually, I got out of it with the help of my partner. Do you ever fall into a depressive state? And how do you manage to move on?




4 thoughts on “Quick Thought Tuesday | Depression

  1. Hey Ben

    All’s good now… On top of the world!

    Thanks for your reply. Much appreciated! I will do so in the near future.
    Keep up the good work and thanks for sharing YOUR life with us.


  2. I have had a couple of depression spells in my lifetime… Roughly maybe 10 or so… I think. The first was just terrible. I could identify later on what it was like and how to manage it when I was down “there”. Never took any tablets to get “out” of it. Just stuck it out! My belief – told myself over and over that it will get better. And it did… Always!

    Of those 10 times, 3 were bad where you felt that nothing will help. I was deep in the “jungle”. I have actually handled the last one very well (Happened towards the end of 2018 when I came out – lasted about 3 weeks. It was more of a “feeling down” period. It was like you just find yourself in that hole and you are trying to get out. I was more equipped to survive this last one because of experience I would say. I constantly told myself OVER and OVER that things will get better. And it eventually did… like it did in the past. This last depression (and also other episodes) was more like you are out of touch with reality and that you constantly feel negative. With that I had a head cold that sort of made it worse. I even went to have a diabetes and blood pressure check up. All negative. I think the body was weak to fight off common stuff like having a cold.

    What helped the most was to just think positive and I tried by all means to keep myself BUSY. That pulled me through. I think it lasted for about one and a half to 2 months. You just sort of feel down. And then… you just get out of it and then you are sort of on a high. Getting out of it is such a great feeling. Thoughts and doing things return to normal… I remember my spell while I was working many years ago… I was sort of scared to answer phone calls while working while feeling depressed… but getting out of it felt like I sort of couldn’t wait to answer phone calls. You just felt positive again and that you could face and conquer the world with all its challenges.

    I don’t think any person can understand depression unless you’ve been through it yourself. There are of course different levels but mine were all more or less the same – symptoms wise. During one of my depression spells, I visited a doctor that prescribed Prozac. I think I used it for a couple of days and then flushed it down the toilet. It was just not for me. The reason I did that is a bit clearer to me now. At that time I read up about depression and I was equipped to make an informed decision about the medication. I could help myself, mentally. Like I’ve mentioned… Be with people, think positive and believe in yourself and that there will be light at the end of the tunnel. You should not try and fight it on your own. Be with people.

    This last bout was sort of camouflaged by the slight head cold I had so I was sort of good in hiding it from family and friends. I think in the other instances I have shared it with close family. Like I have mentioned. Although I have in all instances after the 1st and 2nd time hidden it quite well.

    Just a thought… a cousin of mine used it against me when there was a disagreement between us. Bless him. May he never go through that dark valley… There you go… My depressing depression story I hope it helps someone out there. Stay positive! Peace!

    PS – I also feel that I have lost “time” after such spells. Sort of like you lost out on what was going on around you. Difficult to explain.

    1. I totally related to the feeling of havng lost time. When I’m feeling like that, which thankfully isn’t the case often, I often feel like there’s so much going on around me and I wanna participate and be a part of it… But in the end it’s just to much, and it’d tear me apart. So, it’s good to cut back but also very hard for me, especially for my FOMO. But it’s true, it’s great to be with others and try to get your head in a differend mind space.

      When I’m like that I feel it’s nearly impossible to imagine things getting better. I know I have to remind myself that things will get better eventually but imagining an unimaginable future is so damn hard.

      It was so interesting to hear you stories. I feel this is such a tough emotional fight, no one truly can understand it. So, your last episode happened after you came out? I wish for you that you feel better now! Gay Pride season is coming up, hopefully that will help. The LGBT comunnity can really be something special and makes me feel so very welcome all the time.

      I’ve taken anti-depressants for many years for my OCD and the thing is that your symptoms usually get worse at first before they start helping. I was also very happy when I was able to go off them but there’s nothing wrong in using them. I used them for many years and they did help a little bit. But most of the work (for OCD) has to come from the person themselves.

      Hope you’re having a great day! If you’re ever interested about writing a guest blog post about your outing and how you felt during that time frame, I’d be humbled to feature you!


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