Let’s Talk: My Other Shadow

By The Beacon | October 28, 2015 3:57pm

by Patrick Garrison |


No one would ever guess I suffer from depression. I smile. I laugh. I tell jokes. I’m outgoing and cheery most of the time. I have friends and family that care deeply for me and vice versa. What would I have to be sad about? What signs are there for them to see? Isolation? Mood swings? I don’t always isolate myself and when I do it’s rarely noticed anyway. Not because no one cares, but because if done right occasional alone time doesn't strike anyone as odd. My mood swings aren't noticeable because I've gotten quite adept at controlling and hiding them. So how could anyone ever notice it, especially when they've never seen me without depression?

The answer is, they probably don’t.

Depression hides in the corners of our smiles. At the bottom of our laughs. The crevices of bright rooms. People don’t see the anchor tied to our heart dragging us down beneath the surface. This school has seen so many get dragged down by this disease. Over the summer I decided to get help because I didn’t want to join them. Things are better now. I won’t lie and say it’s all sunshine and butterflies, but it’s better. So for anyone else suffering I implore you to get help. Visit the Health Center. Or talk to a friend about it. Hell, talk to me about it. But please, do something. And know this; you are not alone. We are not alone.


Patrick Garrison is a senior Entrepreneurship & Innovation Management major and can be reached at garrisop16@up.edu. Patrick is a member of Active Minds, a group on campus dedicated to educating our community about mental health and demonstrating that people are not alone in their mental health struggles.


Mental Health Resources:

UP Health and Counseling Center: (503) 943-7134

Multnomah Mental Health Crisis Line: (503) 988-4888

Active Minds: activemindsup@gmail.com or facebook.com/activemindsatup