How to Date After 50

I hear people praise dating apps a lot, how much easier and more efficient it is to screen people in advance and only date ones that actually fulfill your criteria. This makes a lot of sense to me, but I haven’t had a lot of…

Functional Depression

When I was first suicidal, I seemed fine. No, really, I seemed better than fine. People would tell me I was an inspiration. I was their hero. I woke up every morning and I trained for an Ironman. I signed up for it nine days after my daughter…

When You’re Not Gifted Anymore

I was a “wunderkind” for much of my high school career. I took more AP classes than anyone I knew and I got amazing scores on standardized tests. I tried to take classes during lunch my junior and senior year (not something I recommend). I…

Saying No — The Gift of Depression

You might call it one of the gifts of depression — learning to say no. It happened years ago, after my daughter’s death, when people asked me to do things far too soon. I felt a strange disconnection with people who I normally…

Jumping Off the Cliff

When I was eight years old, I remember standing at the top of a ladder that was next to a trampoline at my cousins’ house. Everyone was jumping off the ladder onto the trampoline to get a big bounce. It had looked fun when I was…

The Gifted Child

I was a gifted child. I know that many people have preconceptions about what this means. Often they expect it means that I was gifted in all areas, math, reading, science, and well, not sports. Gifted children are often arrogant and socially awkward. They like “nerdy” things…

The Slow, Dark Weight of Depression

I had never been truly depressed before I faced deep grief with my daughter’s death sixteen years ago. Then it was an unpleasant revelation to experience. I sometimes slept badly, waking in the middle of the night and unable to go back to sleep…

When Your Brain Is Lying to You

One of the hardest things a depressed person must fight through is their own brain lying to them. When I first had depression, I had never really experienced my brain lying to me. I mean, of course I had. I’d been wrong plenty…

The Limits of Medication and Therapy

Whenever I talk about my depression, the immediate response I get is people saying I need a good therapist and some medication. Sometimes they suggest a particular medication that helped them or someone they knew. But I will tell you that from my side…

What to Say to a Depressed Person

Once, when I was very close to the end of my rope, I talked to my sister about how I felt sure that no one would care if I was gone. It’s hard to talk to a depressed person when their brain is…

Mette Harrison

Author of The Bishop’s Wife mystery series, The Mormon Sabbatical Podcast, Princeton PhD, fiction editor at Exponent II, autist, she/her

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