DISCLAIMER: I'm not a psychiatrist. I'm not a mental health expert. I'm just one blogger with experiences and opinions. YMMV. And honestly, this is just a ramble.
How do you tell the difference between clinically depressed and just stressed to one's breaking point?
I don't know.
I think that a lot of what I thought was my depression could more accurately be called poor handling of very stressful situations.
I don't handle failure well. And a lot of the problems of my personal "great tribulation" were self-inflicted. A wiser man would've avoided them.
Not only have I made it through hell (or the closest I've ever been to it), but the hell in my mind has decreased to a mostly-manageable regret and self-loathing about the poor choices made in my 20s. I finally have hope about the future (a combination of trust in a good God who has been there for me, and a reasonable measurement of where I am right now)
So although I've peeked into the abyss...there are people with a different set of problems, whether chemical, biological, financial, relational...God only knows.
I thought that things couldn't get better, only worse. And from my worst moment...things did get worse before they got better.
But they did get better.