It´s a fact of life that some people are more susceptible to depression than others. Sometimes there plays a genetically component, sometimes it´s the socio-economical situation, a disease that eats away their vitality, but most of the time it´s a deeply felt sentiment of being blocked in their development; a job they hate, a relation that degraded into a monotone ritual, etc…
When I look around me, I notice that about 50 % of the people I know are swallowing antidepressants and are in psychotherapy. The current pandemic has even increased the amount of people that appeal upon the mental healthcare system. It´s a dark side of this disease that very often also hits people that didn´t have to deal in person with an infection but who´re just getting hit by the quarantine measures that are put in place to curb the spread of the epidemic. While politicians and journalists are focusing on r-factors, hospitalization numbers, and dead rates, the collateral effects of this pandemic may prove to be more devastating than its actual impact.
Domestical violence and divorce rates are peaking, acts of public violence erupting, business going bankrupt. It still must be seen if the baby boom that gynaecologists are perceiving will have a beneficial effect or will just be a part of the problems that will arise in the aftermath of this pandemic.
And sometimes I ask myself; why isn´t everybody depressed? Those for whom teleworking is an option saw themselves relieved of the daily pilgrimage towards the office, saving them two, sometimes four hours on a working day. Some others who were running a small internet business saw their turnover exploding. Ready or not, the pandemic has launched our society into the future.
Some people can transform an occasional setback into an opportunity to try something new. Learn a new skill, language, rethink their life, do chores they always had to postpone and readjust their lifestyle to the new reality.
Those who´re left behind are alas not blessed with such adaptation skills. They feel scared because their old world is crumbling and they fear, sometimes rightfully, that in the new world there will be no place anymore for their old selves. Somehow, they don´t have it into them to reinvent themselves. They will need some professional guidance that forces them out of their cocoon of old time certainties. And those who can´t be helped will probably become redundant sociological ballast. And that´s really depressing.
While demographists are screaming murder about China´s plumbing birth rate, they should consider that this is maybe an example that the whole world should follow, and take into account the temporary setback of having to deal with an aging population. In an increasingly overpopulated world, science has to get rid of the over-glorified “growth-concept”.
The focus has to be laid on quality instead of quantity. Not an easy concept for families that are used to live in an airconditioned nightmare, with two or three cars under the carport, stuffing themselves with takeaway fast-food junk while swallowing their antidepressants with a soft-drink mixed with some liquor.