Depression: Bugs In Your Brain

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Earlier this year, I gave a presentation at OSCON on both my experiences with and the science of depression. The video of that presentation is above.

This isn’t a video of hope. It’s not a video of “everything is going to be okay”, because there’s no way I can say that. It’s a video discussing what it’s like, and some of the research as to what’s going on in your brain.

It’s a video that says that you are not alone.

Depression is terrible. It makes it hard to look forward to anything. Decisions are difficult, because none of them seem worthwhile. It can make you lonely, and at the same time make the thought of seeing other people unpalatable. It can make you frustrated, but nothing seems to relieve that frustration, nothing seems to have meaning any more. And it can continue, all by itself. Once it starts, you can be depressed because you’re depressed.

Depression has taken some of the best and brightest people in Open Source. I’m deeply grateful that the OSCON chairs agreed—on short notice—for me to have a location and film crew for this talk.

I’ve been sitting on the video for a while. I’ve been meaning to watch it—but for my own personal reasons—I haven’t been able to do so. If you’re the sort who just want the science, skip forward to minute 12. If you only want my personal experiences, you can stop watching at the same point.

Thank you very much for your time, and especially thank you to everyone who has been so supportive and caring when I’ve struggled. Please don’t hesitate to share this talk widely. If you wish for me to speak on depression at your conference or event—and can find a way for me to get there—I’ll be happy to oblige.

<3 Paul

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