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Blue Monday, or is it?
   2017-01-17 14:16:31    CRIENGLISH.com      Web Editor: Fei Fei

Blue Monday: Why its like every other day for someone whos depressed. [Photo: ThinkStock]

By Sophie Dishman for sino.uk 
  
Mondays. Many of us loathe them and many of us get the Monday blues. Today those blues are recognised with Blue Monday - the most depressing day of the year, apparently.
 
The day is observed without fail on the third Monday in January every year.
 
"Blue Monday started life as a corporate puff for Sky Travel (end of January, perfect time to book a holiday). Their PR company, incidentally, offered a suspiciously similar ready-made equation to another academic, just months before it first appeared as important research by Cardiff academic Cliff Arnall.
 
But now Blue Monday has slipped out of Skys ownership and become part of the canon of pseudoscientific media myth. Most alarmingly, last year it was used by the Samaritans, and this year it was used by the Mental Health Foundation. These people, apparently, think its okay to use bull**** to promote awareness of mental health issues" says journalist, and doctor, Ben Goldacre on his blog Bad Science
 
The weather, debt, how long its been since Christmas, our New Years Resolutions and low motivation levels are some of the reasons that contributed to the feeling of mass depression. This gloomy equation has created a storm around the world, but what does today feel like for those that actually have depression?
 
Mark Raftery, 35, from Galway on the West coast of Ireland is unaffected by today. Its just another day. I find the process of Christmas much tougher. At Christmas you are expected to go to loads of social functions that will have people you may not have seen in 12 months - I find that terrifying. I can sometimes miss the comfort in being sad. I would rather do today then Christmas Eve 100 times over.
 
Djan Savicevic Eade, from Sunderland has been diagnosed with depression. He agrees its similar to yesterday and tomorrow. I don't know whether it's because I'm indoors most of the time, but I never really feel better or worse depending on the weather. I can barely leave the house anyway so it doesn't really have an impact. Most people I spoke to determined that it was a normal day, while some people do not know what Blue Monday is.
But do days like today make mental health trivial or could it offend people. John Harrison thinks so.

"I guess some people could be offended by it as it sounds like they are watering down depression. To label a specific day as the most depressing day of the year belittles the intense feelings of depression people who suffer from mental health regularly feel every day.
Depression isn't something that really manifests itself on one day, there can be people like myself who suffer from depression and anxiety who today have thankfully had one of our better days in a while," he said.
 
It seems as though it isnt all doom and gloom, especially for the Bournemouth Samaritans who were handing out cups of tea at Bournemouth train station this morning, turning Blue Monday into Brew Monday.
 
Sophie Dishman is the Spectrum Sino Mental Health Correspondent.

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