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Happy or SAD Holidays

Happy or SAD Holidays

People begin to get excited for the fall weather, and holidays that come with the end of the year. Happy families and friends spend time together, but it does not guarantee that everyone is happy. Fall and winter are both symbols of death. Everything around us dies even the people we love. People do not notice others going through a hard time because they are easily distracted by holidays, money, and decorations.

The medical name for this illness is SAD. It stands for seasonal affective disorder; sometimes its known as the “winter depression”. It begins to appear in adults starting as young as 18 years old. It is a type of depression that comes and goes in seasonal patterns, but it becomes dangerous during the winter season because symptoms are more severe. Some say they begin to feel the symptoms in October, and they progressively get worse until December.

The following symptoms are common but do not limit to only these.

  • Feeling more depressed than usual
  • Losing interest in activities you once enjoyed
  • Lower grades
  • Low energy
  • Sleep problems
  • Changes in appetite or weight
  • Feeling sluggish or agitated
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Feeling hopeless, worthless, or guilty
  • Frequent thoughts about death or suicide

SAD affects more people than you think. Marquis Brown is a 76-year-old male who suffers yearly but does not tell anyone. Brown said, “I have family, but they all live far from me so I do not put it past them if they cannot visit me during the holidays.” He said, “some years are harder than others, but I have my dog and he keeps me going.”

Brown keeps himself busy gardening in the spring and summer, so it helps him not get stuck in his head. During the winter, this is not an option for coping so he tries to decorate the house for himself and his dog. It makes him sadder knowing his family won’t come to see and enjoy it. At some points, he thought about dying or taking his life because he said, “I already lived”, but he does not because he is curious to see what else life throws at him.

“Be nice and friendly to everyone because you really do not know what is going on in anyone’s life.” – Marquis Brown

Stacey Macias is a 22-year-old female who gets “sad” at the end of the year. She said, “I have friends and family, but they stay busy.” Macias does not feel sad because of her friends or family being busy, but more so she feels an overwhelming feeling that hovers over her specifically during this time. She said, “It takes me by surprise every year because I think to myself ‘oh, I guess this year I’ll be good,’ but then boom it hits me again.” Macias finds it hard to keep herself motivated, but she tries to do everything she regularly does, but sometimes it becomes a hassle.” According to her, she does not have a reason to be sad, but it just happens. She described her seasonal depression as a numbing careless feeling because nothing excites her, but it goes away in the beginning of the new year.

“I should not be sad because my life is going well. I have a roof over my head, food, a decent job, and no debt. It still happens, but it should not because its selfish since it can always be worse.” – Stacey Macias 

Many people are not aware about this type of depression, but make sure to pay attention this year to what people say and do because the truth slips out. You can help by reaching out to friends and family you haven’t talked to in months or years because a call or text can stop a tragedy. Spread the love and joy to everyone you encounter daily.

If you feel like you might be experiencing any severe symptoms and do not know where to get help then you’re in luck because UNG offers mental health resources.

Contact Info:

UNG Nigel Cares 24/7/365


Student Counseling @UNG: Call your campus office to book an appointment

  • Blue Ridge / Dahlonega Campuses: 706-864-1819
  • Cumming Campus: 470-239-3134
  • Gainesville Campus: 678-717-3660
  • Oconee Campus: 706-310-6205
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Happy or SAD Holidays