“A bend in the road is not necessarily the end of the road. You may just need to make that turn in order to see the light at the end of the tunnel.”
The Quran makes it clear that by virtue of our humanness, we will face challenges in our lives and we don’t get to choose when or what. With the challenges, it’s not just the loss but the impact it has on us. Depression is one of these challenges.
Depression is not necessarily a character weakness, and not something you can tell someone to “snap out of it.” So if you know someone who is depressed, don’t assume they are weak. Depression can happen to anyone of any ethnicity or religiosity.
Islam says that because you are a Muslim, you have access to tools, so if you are depressed, you will be prevented from going into despair.
Religion prevents the despair, not the depression.
Suicide is the 3rd leading cause for people between 18 and 35 and the 2nd leading cause of death for college students.
Usually the depression is not as much of a problem as the way that people choose to cope with it (e.g. drinking, drugs, etc.).
1. Early prevention – if you detect it, do something about it. Depression is about doing nothing and idling, so we need to do something. Being functional despite being depressed will help you get out of it and/or have lesser form of depression.
2. Surround yourself with a good support system – about 80% of people, before completing suicide, called a loved one. If someone reaches out to you, take that seriously.
Signs of Suicidal Thoughts: People giving away valuables.
Don’t be afraid of asking people “I’m noticing you’re very depressed.”
3. Seeing a therapist does not mean that you are weak because you cannot do it on your own.
4. Re-labling – you’re not necessarily changing the facts, but you re-label it and it can change your outlook.
5. Knowing Allah through His Names and Attributes
6. Close the gap between what you believe and your actions – your actions should be a testimony to Islam and Imaan.
7. Prayer and getting close to Allah. A lot of times a therapist will send a person to receive “spiritual healing.”
A good therapist helps you to tap into the well of tools that you already have.