14 comments

  1. Thanks so much for sharing, Ari. It’s a very insidious thing, isn’t it? I had classic SAD one year, there was a gradual enclosed feeling and I felt weighed down, I hated the dull light, feeling it was going on and on, then I got depressed, then anxiety stomped in – those serotonin levels fell below my threshold and it felt just like that, it was nothing my attitude or outlook could have done anything to prevent, and medication restored my wellbeing again quite quickly. The rest of the time I’ve a reasonable equilibrium and can be pretty happy most of the time, but I have found the perimenopause hormonal fluctations have thrown some crashes my way. So Yes to all the measures and methods you use to help the effects of SAD, and we all know you do an amazing job in keeping in touch. Honestly, you cover so much for us writers and in such a comprehensive and well expressed way, you needn’t have any concerns about not being around sometimes. We are all behind you. Hope you are feeling better soon :>).

  2. It’s empowering to know some of the “why” for these struggles, isn’t it? I’m glad that you’ve got support, and are able to share this, too. The demands of social media to be “on” all the time are stressful, even without these struggles- hoping that you do find time to rest and rebalance as needed.

  3. I’m glad you’ve been finding ways to help your situation, especially since they’re ways that avoid the use of medication, which can often cause other issues.

    Take time for yourself when you need to. Looking after your health – physical and mental – is more important than blogs and social media, after all.

  4. For years while living in the UK I suffered from SAD syndrome and didn’t know what it was. Latterly I found the natural dawn alarm clock and light box the single most effective thing that helped, only discovered when we were staying in East Prawle in February and woken by natural light and felt sooooo good! We’ve always had dogs so walking out in the natural light has always been part of my life.
    Since moving to Italy 12 years ago, I’ve not had to use light box or alarm, but do have them stashed in my wardrobe… you never know. Take care, Ari.
    Take care, it’s

  5. Well done for speaking about this, as an anxiety sufferer I know the pitfalls. Sometimes it is enough that you have got up and carried on. More people need to be candid about mental health so there is not a stigma. In fact, recently I offered to talk about my anxiety in front of people as part of a speech but was told by the person putting on the event that they were worried people would think I was mad and treat me differently. I said OK and agreed, but inside I was fuming, if we want to stop labelling people with mental health problems as crazy we need to talk about it!

  6. Oh Ari, I have thought of your whereabouts several times and wished you someplace exotic and warm…
    Now I wish you a short trip between your SAD days when they come to you and a short time spent there. If those days are upon you they must be for a reason, so stay strong and remember you are not alone.

    I also missed you for my own selfish reasons…you are the only person that looks at my blog…LOL
    I actually think you’re my only fan. Ha!

    Mental illness does carry a stigma with it, man I hate that for all of us.
    However, I love your blog and I appreciate more than you can imagine how truly genuine you have been about the subject.
    Thank you, 🌻

  7. I “liked” this post Ari, for your ability to discuss your SAD condition – it is brave to reveal so much of yourself and perhaps unburdening helped out a little too? I have heard that light therapy is very effective for SAD. I have a friend who lives in western New York and her doctor told her that this corner of the United States has the least amount of sun in the Winter time and she should take Vitamin D to help her bones and her disposition. She has lived there 15 years and will not be without this supplement. I had a friend who suffered from SAD and when he and his wife were nearing retirement age, he wanted to go somewhere warm, but more than just the warmth on his bones, he wanted a place where the sun was shining the most of any state – he researched and found that city and state: Las Cruces, New Mexico. He spent one Winter there on his own – he is a writer and worked from home anyway. He rented an apartment and his wife visited, liked it and they bought a home there and when she retired the following years, they moved there permanently. No regrets. I hate the Winter for the short days and I don’t like driving in Winter – in fact I’m scared to do so, having taken the bus for so many years to my job. So I am happy for working from home. But the loss of time spent out enjoying oneself in nature, or just going for a walk are big losses for me and I also find myself in a funk, wanting only to sleep longer than usual, going to bed sometimes at 8:30. I hope you find the light therapy to be a Godsend Ari – many blessings to you.

  8. I think I was lowkey suffering from this for a while – it was hard to tell with the school year coinciding with the winter season. I’ve been taking vitamin D for about a year now, and it’s seemed to really help. I hope you find something which works for you and that you feel better soon and your creativity remains undiminished!

  9. What you just did took courage. Loads of it! And now that your readers know I think they’ll be a little more understanding when you say you’re having a bad day. And for heaven’s sake don’t think for one nanosecond you’re any less of a human being. What you’ve just done makes you one of the strongest people I know. Everybody has a “flaw”. I learned my big brother, who I always thought to be damn close to invulnerable, is terrified of heights. Put him on the fortieth floor of an office building for a meeting of some sort and he’ll be in the chair closest to the door with his back to the view. I learned this only last year! For over *six* decades I never knew. I still can’t talk about my “flaw”. All I will say is I had it when I was a kid, and only two other kids **in the entire world** had it. I’m sad to report I’m the only person to survive past their very early teens. I can’t remember if I even told my wife. It doesn’t have a name. If my doctor told my parents what it was called they never told me and they’re both gone. All I know is I wish I never had it because it caused so much distress. Its been gone only fifty years last August. I created a cure. a drastic one, but it worked.

    So Ari, when you say you’re having a bad day I fully understand.

  10. I’m sorry to hear that you have been struggling. Like you, I had no idea about SAD until later in life. Finally, it all clicked and made sense. It feels good to blame your mood on the weather. This is not because I don’t want to accept responsibility, but because it’s easier for me to cope, knowing that things didn’t just change out of the blue.

    When I stepped outside in the morning a month or so ago and it was dark, I knew the season was upon us and a shiver ran down my spine. Fall is definitely something I have always dreaded. While we cannot do too much about it being darker in the mornings, or in the evenings, there are other ways to try and mitigate the effects. I moved to a place where the sunny days outnumber the cloudy ones. It’s SO helpful. When I feel SAD creeping up on me, I go outside and look at the blue sky and the sun.

    I’m happy to hear that you found some things that work for you. I think those are great. I never used a light box, but I thought about it. Doctors seem to strongly recommend it for sleep related disorders, too.

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