The Noonday Demon An Atlas of Depression PDF ã Demon

The Noonday Demon An Atlas of Depression ”If there is anything we’ve learned in the addiction field” says Herbert Kleber “it’s that once you get addicted — it doesn’t matter how you got there — you have a disease with a life of its own If you treat a depressed alcoholic with an antidepressant you produce a non depressed alcoholic” Taking away the original motivation for abusing substances does not free someone who has developed a pattern of substance abuseThe Noonday Demon by Andrew Solomon won the 2001 National Book Award for Non Fiction Solomon is currently a Professor of Clinical Psychology at Columbia University but was not a medical professional when he wrote this blockbuster book that catapulted him into America’s mental health consciousnessThis book is about depression and it weighs heavily on the mind Solomon lays bare the real facts about depression but with of a message of hope and empathy than despair It is a largely a personal memoir but includes stories of many other clinically depressed people that he personally interviewed Solomon himself has depression and addictions There are a surprising number of useful and well placed observations throughout the book For example alcoholism and drug abuse are not always related to depression Even suicide is not always related to depression Large overlaps for sure but the illnesses are often conflatedThere is a section in the book about his mother’s choice to end her own life She was in the late stages of ovarian cancer It is one of the most powerful chapters that I have ever read and it would be hard to imagine that anyone could read that chapter with dry eyes Solomon could have written a whole book about his mother but wisely decided to tackle a whole atlas of issues There is another section on how poverty and depression are inter related Professional psycho analysis and medications are too expensive for most but society would actually benefit economically and certainly morally if we paid for and treated those who needed psychological help For many of the unemployed who have twice the rate of depression as the national average it is first and foremost a mental health issue His musings on evolution and why depression is a trait that has survived genetically in so many people was intriguing Solomon tries to explain it with a king of the hill analogy Say someone attempts to overthrowwin control through physical means or persuasion of a group and fails badly This results in most of those who fail to supplant in lower levels of serotonin The lower serotonin feels very bad to the mind and body effectively a mini episode of depression Thus if these genes survive then these people are less likely to try that again thereby preserving their genes for posterity and saving their life and possibly the life of the king It is not clear why there is a spectrum of depression and why there would be severe depression such that people might end their own life counteracting any benefits of the gene itself Solomon tends to believe that modern life and the increase of control might have something to do with it He gives examples of how the suicide rate amongst concentration camp survivors were higher than when they were in the camps experiencing the horrors first hand Probably the most speculative chapter but thought provoking from an evolutionary perspective Solomon is a fabulous writer and this is a powerful book and especially insightful in gaining a better understanding of those loved ones and colleagues who may suffer from depression or addiction — about 1 out of every 4 persons 5 stars Highly recommended And this ladies and gentlemen is how you write about depression The survivors stay on pills waiting We go on You cannot choose whether you get depressed and you cannot choose when or how you get better but you can choose what to do with the depression especially when you come out of itThis was an incredible book that took me months to read a dense mighty tome about depression It weaves together the author's personal experience of multiple breakdowns and decades of treatments with other narratives scientific research historical background and social context and sometimes literature Rather than try to summarize depression he lets it stay messy as it really is different for each person with no clear path for treatment I learned a lot and hopefully my increased understanding will make me a better boss a better faculty advisor and a better friendThis was also discussed on Episode 009 of the Reading Envy Podcast Google document of marked bits After slogging through a large chunk of The Noonday Demon I've come to accept I just can't see it through to the end This book is lethal alternately depressing readers boring readers and making readers roll their eyes so hard they pop out of their headsFirst depression on any level mild or major brief or chronic is a painful crippling ailment Anyone who pulls themselves up and fights automatically earns a bit of my respect I know how hard the attack is and how hopeless it can seemToo bad Solomon's battle resulted in this book Self absorption is a trademark of the genre; I expect that But self absorption is different from and tolerable than self pity and Solomon's writing is solidly wallowing in self pity whenever he's talking about himself And try be a little grateful sir for your good fortune to be born into privilege Most of us weren't so damned lucky Even the self absorbed know when they've been handed a giftA lot of the science studies and numbers discussed in The Noonday Demon are extremely outdated Solomon used the best information he had at the time but if you want up to date information of that sort look elsewhereWhile there's nothing wrong with exploring alternative medicine there's uite a bit of pseudo science bullshit presented here mixed in with actual facts jumbled together in a way that could be downright dangerous Very concerningAnd beyond all of this? So much of The Noonday Demon is dry and downright boring The few engaging passages are nice but a reader has to manage to stay awake first and even then there's a sense that many of his personal anecdotes are told simply to be shocking very much in the Look how fucked up I was Be amazed category Maybe that works for some readers but I'm not one of themI've learned many things from my own battle with major depression one of which is appreciating the time I have to experience life That's why I'm putting Solomon's work to the side life's too short to waste it on finishing books like this This was a good book but I found it scholarly less readable and harder to get through than similar books such as Peter Whybrow's A Mood Apart and Lewis Wolpert's Malignant Sadness Perhaps this is because Solomon cites a lot of philosophers He has extensive notes but the book itself isn't footnoted; you have to go to the back and sort of guess what bits in each chapter the notes are referring to That's frustrating I do however think this book is valuable particularly the chapter on illicit drugs and depression unlike most people Solomon doesn't just issue a blanket don't do it on substances but analyzes each one and what they can and can't do for depression and his chapter on depression and poor people A piercing painful and oh so necessary book The Noonday Demon An Atlas of Depression examines depression through a cultural personal and scientific lens Andrew Solomon well known for his TED Talks and his varied publications reveals the agonizing depths of the illness as well as its progression through time His thoughtful and insightful perspective supplements his extensive research and he analyzes several of depression's facets how it spans different parts of the world how it affects the brain and its neurotransmitters its part in politics its relation to suicide and Solomon pairs facts with his own experience of depression and discusses the disease in uniue ways ranging from the gender dynamics of depression to its presence in those who live in povertyMy one ualm with this book comes from Solomon's attitude toward those who face mental illness and commit violent acts While I feel empathy for those who act out of an anger they cannot control I repudiate any acceptance of abuse physical or emotional toward anyone Solomon writes that he does not accept such hurtful behavior but I wanted of a stance than that Despite this issue Solomon's hope for reform and revitalization impressed me throughout the book even in the face of bleak circumstances Recommended to those with even a remote interest in depression Read The Noonday Demon if you want to understand a friend or family member's plight without asking them or pestering them; read this book if you want to understand a disease that devastates a great number of people I cannot wait to read of Solomon's writing Probably the best book I have read for a long time The War and Peace of depression A compelling comprehensive personal tightly written passionate and well researched exploration of depression in all its darkness at noon dimensions I read it too fast in a few sittings because I found it so compelling And I found huge insights in his experience;even the most extreme of his experiences because he writes like a traveler back from a largely unexplored often denied uncomfortable not well reported on remote region deep inside at least a third of the population or 80% of Greenland Inuit who are clinically depressedI particularly liked his insight that while much of our depression is rear ward facing about past loss and trauma; there is also anxious darkness looking forward Anxiety as forward looking depression Seems obvious but helpful And the author tried almost every imaginable way to mitigate his massive recurring depressive mental breakdowns chemical talking spiritual ECT; you name he tried it Not a book for the faint hearted or for those who think that the journey deep inside the self or deep inside other peoples' horrendous depressions is somehow self indulgent as I saw one reviewer write And of course many people could not believe he was devoting years to writing about this topic though in private hundreds of people opened up to supply him with incredible accounts of their experiences despite the societal discomfort with the whole subject One of his colleagues even denied that he suffered from depression because he had such an obviously 'good life' Yeh right especially recommended for anyone who has ever dealt personally with depression the scope that solomon attempts is vast covering literature history psychology sociology politics anthropology etc etc though many uestions go unanswered from the start he is honest about the intention of the book and it is not to give answers if anything it is to raise uestions what we get is a valuable overview of a complex and misunderstood mental illness that can only help to further the dialogue Down so down oh The sorrow I could drownOverwhelming emotions crowding my mindIt gets me down this mundane grindLike groundhog day perpetual recurrenceDay in day out such annoyanceI'm starting with the man in the mirror the AbyssLose the Ego and find my blissDepression sucks I suffer with acute insomnia as a symptom This is when I do a great deal of my writing during the witching hours Here is one of my many rhymesInsomnia Tick Tock Tick TockTick TockIn my head or simply on the wall the sound of the clockWatching the hands go round and roundThe constant repetition of that sound Thoughts reverberating through my headOver and over feelings of dreadNever ending like a silent pestWill I ever get some needful rest A crescendo of noise like a freight train through the night racingA caged Tiger maddened and continuously pacingAn orchestra of voices distracting for sureFalling asleep is such a chore Oh My sanity is waning for goodness sakeThis feeling of being forever awakeWill I ever fall into slumber? Just a little sleepAnd dream nice dreams and have memories to keep The walls are watching the ceiling the floorOh Is there anything that can cure?This Insomnia that plagues me through the nightEyes wide awake until it gets light It's Four O'clock and outside birds are singingAnd still in my mind bells are ringingYet deafening the silence around and withinSleep Sleep Sleep My consciousness needs healing  Just a snooze even if fleetingBut all I can hear is my own heart beatingEyes are sore and forehead throbbingIt's a forlorn melancholy like a Baby sobbing My cat opens one eye with a curious lookAs I churn through another chapter of a bookYet tiredness does not descend on me stillOnly a shudder from a sudden chill Insomnia eats away at one's SoulBlack and endless like an ever expanding holeIt's the Witching Hour as I write this verseI'll only sleep when I am lead in a Hearse In a few hours it'll be time to riseOh the emptiness and painAnd when the day is throughI'll do it all over again By Leo🐯👍Depression Man it sucksMy soul it is broken will it ever be mendedI was once happy go lucky but it has all endedAn empty shell a void a deep blue a dried up huskOnce the life and soul of the party from dawn to duskNow a sad sack melancholy forlorn no self esteemWorthless useless no bloody good unloved withoutNo matter how I try there is no doubtI will fail always cos' that is what I doEverything every outcome no hope it is trueI only hurt the ones I love my family and my friendsThis feeling of despair repetition it never endsNo sleep at night thoughts racing through my mindMonkey chatter worries scenarios of every kindWhat if this? What if that? What will I do? Is it real?If this happens or that happens fills me with a chillA panic attack a meltdown spiraling out of controlManic incoherent embarrassed left feeling a foolStuck in a cycle a box a chasm a rutA recluse the crazy old man a loner a nutWatching the clock tick tock tick tockWasting away no inspiration or motivation writers blockHoping to escape the mediocrity get recognition the ball rolling a startShow my prose the way I write exclusively from my HeartBy Leo🐯👍👹I remember an extreme episode of bipolar when a friend was criticising a book I like no memory of the book but my response I will never forgetMay I suggest try reading the book again only this time backwards It might undo the heartache you have sufferedI can be uite cutting and it really hits home Can't see the woods for the trees or have no reason Suburban RutThis little creepy man lives in the flat belowThe Council covertly moved him in ten years agoHe is man who ticks all of their boxes looked afterI often hear him cackling maniacal laughterHe hoards rubbish we have rats and flies an eyesoreHe does not wash and plays up porn extreme hard coreStands behind his curtain and his front door naked deviant behaviourBut the left wing housing officer is his saviourIgnored our concerns for this man needs supervisionHe wanders around at night and turns the sound up on his televisionPeers through people’s letterboxes a Peeping Tom leeringWe have complained about him for years but nobody is hearingA single word we say we get accused of a hate crimeYet he does his thing all the timeWe are left feeling like a foolWe live one hundred yards from a primary schoolThey have been complaining parents tooBut he gets protected it really is trueThe police secured his front door as he is apparently vulnerableNot the preteens who he watches as they come home from schoolI have extreme mental health issues too bipolar and distressAnd I have lived in my property for 30 years what a messBought it from the council in 2003Ploughed blood sweat and tears and £40000 into my propertyAnd I am the villain apparently not heWe installed CCTV to catch him in the act his friends alsoThe dirty drug dealers in the next block over imposing their Will I think my head is going to BlowHave these people walked straight off the set of the Jeremy Kyle Show?Hoarding rubbish loud noise every day is a party it is driving me InsaneBuilding alliances with other neighbours and pointing the finger of BlameSuburbia is becoming a ghetto and uirky is the new normalAny rationale is replaced with hate now it is fine to be abnormalDo as thou wilt in this new paradigm it is all invertedOnly criminals are helped along with deviants and people who are pervertedThe drug dealers complained about our cameras WTF Really? OMGThe left wing housing officer ordered us to remove them Cheeky fucking SODSince these people have been moved in the area now is not niceNeedles rubbish noise leering violence and all types of ViceI am so hoping I can leave this suburban RutAs I write this poem tremors cramp my gutThe bipolar is starting to kick in I feel wiredBut do not have any energy left I am so tiredI find it really hard these days to get up and be inspiredWhen I am surrounded by hate deviants it is a swamp a uagmireIs there anybody? Who can give me some advice aid me in any way?To gain popularity for my prose I have no income only PIP a pittance of payTook me eighteen months such stress to get itEven though I paid in for years a system that is ShitNumerous breakdowns even tried to take my own lifeAnd other residents have been threatened with violence and a pulling of a knifeThese scumbags they don’t scare me just make my life intolerableThey are cowards who hide behind the LawEven though they are the ones that constantly offendIt seems that in this new order being like this is the trendReintegrated back into society but they don’t have to changeThe rest of us have to adapt it is very strangeThe apathy is tangible residents live in a bubbleNot really communicating life is now a struggleHow much longer will the masses take?We have to take back control for our children’s sakePoliticians law acts and legalityIs bringing in a new dawn a different realityWhere anything goes it is ok to be different no problem with that it is fineIs there a cut off point? Where do we draw the line?I have been warned not to talk about it how unfairBut it has gone on for so long now I just don’t fucking careThe down stairs neighbour’s behaviour is really taking its tollHe was spotted committing an act with a Chinese Sex DollBut remember he is vulnerable according to the leftAnd everybody else is bigoted racist and cruel at bestSo what is to become of the majority of people?Do we carry on with the acuiescence? Like robots or sheeple?Are we as humanity completely free?Can we say what we want? Is there transparency?Do the leaders do a good job? Do they care? Are we in Fear?Or are they looking out for number one enhancing their careerI could write so much the words are now flowingA myriad of scenarios in my head growingToo many words for my fingers to catch up followI keep pressing the wrong keys and the words seem hollowBut I guess I must end for words these days are limited stifled shortSo I will end now for I don’t want to get flagged or put on reportBy Leo El demonio de la depresión ue aparece ahora en una versión aumentada y revisada es una obra fundamental ue obtuvo el National Book Award y fue finalista del Premio Pulitzer Solomon explora el fenómeno de la depresión a partir de su propia lucha contra la enfermedad y de entrevistas con otros enfermos médicos y científicos responsables políticos investigadores farmacológicos y filósofos; así revela la sutil complejidad y la intensa agonía ue la definenEste libro asume el reto de explicar la depresión y describe el amplio abanico de medicamentos disponibles la eficacia de las terapias alternativas y el impacto ue la enfermedad tiene en distintos grupos sociales en todo el mundo y a lo largo de la historia Solomon demuestra una sinceridad una inteligencia y una erudición extraordinarias a lo largo de este viaje al más oscuro de los secretos familiares Su contribución a nuestra comprensión de la enfermedad mental y también de la condición humana es asombrosa

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