Speaker 1: We are the caretakers of families. So, it is hard to let someone else know that you're not coping.
Speaker 2: Women were supposed to be stoic. You didn't make a public deal of how you felt.
Speaker 3: The stigma that's attached to it, they don't want to be the person who's talked about by others at morning tea.
Speaker 4: A lot of them think it's part of getting old, and there's nothing you can do about it.
S1: The last thing you want is to be a burden on your family because you don't want them to be worrying about you.
S4: So, you just sort of put on a good face and battle with it yourself. "Yeah, I'm fine. Everything's going fine." But underneath it, it's really not fine.
S2: It didn't occur to me that I could talk about it. I thought this was life with a capital 'L-I-F-E' in inverted commas, underlined. We don't get through life on our own.
S4: I've been on my own now for 23 years. Perhaps being a loner can be too much sometimes because you do then, perhaps find it difficult to go and sort things out.
S3: To make those first approaches, whether it would be to a doctor or to a friend, or whoever, requires an awful lot of courage.
S2: There's a bit of a gamble because they may say, "Go away" and not speak to you again. I'm very careful about picking my mark. I just have a notion about someone who is receptive, interested, and treats it seriously.
S4: And that you know you can trust.
S3: Sharing it with your family is a very good way to go, and I chose to do that.
S4: I've got an excellent doctor, and I wrote things out to him, and he would read it and we'd discuss it.
S1: And, I actually, from my own experience, find that speaking to a psychologist, and especially, speaking to a stranger is so much easier than speaking to someone you know. You can be more honest about what you're feeling.
S1: I remember phoning my friend and saying, "Please come up. Please come and see me." And she said, "I'll be there in 10 minutes." And just having that someone walk in the door, sit down on the couch beside me, put her arms around me, calmed that moment of terror, 'cause that's what it was. It was terror.
S2: And I went and saw a doctor at my local clinic and said, "Look, am I mad? What is wrong with me?" And he said, "You're suffering from depression, and I've got someone I think you should see."
S1: The beginning of the process is actually recognising that there's something wrong, and that it's not right that you should feel the way you're feeling. Then you can decide right now, "I need to take action."
S2: I spent half of my life keeping it inside, and it almost drove me into the ground. And when I started talking about it, I improved. I improved markedly. It's a positive event, to speak. Some of my closest mates, "Oh, not again."
S1: I can still remember the feeling of elation coming home thinking, "I'm not a lost cause." It lifts everything off your shoulders. You get such a sense of relief.
S3: The big outcome is making life better for your family and friends around you.
S4: It's helped me to get on with my life and make a new life for myself, and therefore, making my life worth living.
S4: I don't think it's ever too late to seek help, to try and get your life more on an even keel.
S2: You really need someone to talk to, and talking is the way out for all of us, all people who feel like me.
S4: Take that first step and find someone to talk to.
S3: Look forward to a much happier life. Don't dilly-dally.