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SAD about holiday blues


Around our house, the unpleasant manifestations of depression are always lurking right around the corner, especially this time of year.  I finally admitted to Seasonal Affective Disorder last year – and boy, am I thankful the low dosage of citalopram my doctor suggested seems to do the trick.  More difficult to deal with, though, is my husband’s recurring depression.  It’s affected by the loss of sunlight, the cold, and by the coming of Christmas.  Very likely I find it harder to deal with because I have my own down feelings to get through at the same time.

Case in point: A couple of weeks ago we decorated for Christmas.  It’s an event I always look forward to and enjoy.  This year, due to a hectic schedule, it was tricky to fit it in – which made me pretty grumpy.  Then when the actual decorating started, my husband went into a serious funk – picking arguments, finding fault where there was none, behaving as if the rest of the family were going out of their way to make him miserable.  It was a huge relief when he finally washed his hands of all of us and escaped in a nap.

But the day was tainted.  And I was resentful.  I’d forgotten one of my own rules for dealing with a depressed loved one: Give them a free “get out of jail” card for any event they don’t feel up to, and everyone can avoid a whole lot of frustration.  I remembered to use this card for my staff Christmas party coming up this weekend, thank goodness.  And I’ll keep an extra copy of it in my pocket for the next month or so, just in case.

I’m feeling pretty good and I want to enjoy the season.  Nothing wrong with that.  It just takes a little extra planning and finagling.


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