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It sounds to me that you may be suffering from Major Depressive Dosorder. The standard coding for MDD follows the guidelines set forth in the American Psychiatric Association handbook, DSM-IV, which is also in use in the UK. The official criteria for MDD are, from this manual, from which I quote, are:
"A. Five (or more) of the following symptoms have been present during the same 2-week period and represent a change from previous functioning; at least one of the symptoms is either
(1) depressed mood or
(2) loss of interest or pleasure.
Note: Do not include symptoms that are clearly due to a general medical condition, or mood-incongruent delusions or hallucinations.
(1) depressed mood most of the day, nearly every day, as indicated by either subjective report (e.g., feels sad
or empty) or observation made by others (e.g., appears tearful). Note: In children and adolescents, can be irritable mood.
(2) markedly diminished interest or pleasure in all, or almost all, activities most of the day, nearly every day (as indicated by either subjective account or observation made by others)
(3) significant weight loss when not dieting or weight gain (e.g., a change of more than 5% of body weight in a month), or decrease or increase in appetite nearly every day. Note: In children, consider failure to make expected weight gains.
or Hypersomnia nearly every day
(5) psychomotor agitation or retardation
nearly every day (observable by others, not merely subjective feelings of restlessness or being slowed down)
(6) fatigue or loss of energy nearly every day
(7) feelings of worthlessness or excessive or inappropriate guilt (which may be delusional) nearly every day (not merely self-reproach or guilt about being sick)
(8) diminished ability to think or concentrate, or indecisiveness, nearly every day (either by subjective account or as observed by others)
(9) recurrent thoughts of death (not just fear of dying), recurrent suicidal ideation without a specific plan, or a suicide attempt or a specific plan for committing suicide
B. The symptoms do not meet criteria for a Mixed Episode [depression WITH mania]
C. The symptoms cause clinically significant distress or impairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning.
D. The symptoms are not due to the direct physiological effects of a substance (e.g., a drug of abuse, a medication) or a general medical condition (e.g., hypothyroidism).
E. The symptoms are not better accounted for by Bereavement, i.e., after the loss of a loved one, the symptoms persist for longer than 2 months or are characterized by marked functional impairment, morbid preoccupation with worthlessness, suicidal ideation, psychotic symptoms, or psychomotor retardation."
So you see that you are probably diagnosable with MDD. This disorder can run in families, either genetically or as learned behaviour.
You can and SHOULD seek treatment for this. Treatment will consist of psychotherapy (talk therapy) and appropriate medication, if your condition is impairing your day to day functioning mpairment in social, occupational, or other important areas of functioning.
I urge you to act soon so that your depression doesn't worsen. The sooner you get treatment, the sooner you can get back on track and make the best of your time on this planet.
Elliott Sewell, LPCC, NCC, CCMHC