When we deny the existence of deep despair and loneliness created by the painful secrets of our past, we can create a camouflage of “perfect” normalcy – or what’s been termed perfectly hidden depression. What if we could create a culture where revealing these feelings, even darker thoughts of suicide, wasn’t deemed shameful or labeled as pathological, but instead was understood as a sign of trust and a step toward healing? Dr. Margaret Rutherford, a therapist for over thirty years, shares how fostering and modeling deeper transparency can both improve and save lives. Margaret Robinson Rutherford Ph.D., a clinical psychologist with thirty years of experience, is also an author and podcaster. Her book, Perfectly Hidden Depression: How to Break Free from the Perfectionism That Masks Your Depression, has reached thousands here in the US, as well as having an international impact, with translations reaching from Korea to Italy, Turkey to Germany. Her highly popular podcast, The SelfWork Podcast, has been continuously rated as one of the best podcasts for mental health and depression. This talk was given at a TEDx event using the TED conference format but independently organized by a local community.
Love for Dr. Margaret
Thank you Dr. Rutherford. This is an insightful dissection of hidden depression. I’ve been a psychiatric nurse for 40 yrs, and have never heard the silent struggle brought to light so clearly.
Dr. Margaret this is so powerful. This stuck with me: “given his pain and how long he had it.” This is what we don’t see as well, that many of our loved ones hiding their pain have been doing it for so long.
I never realized how important it is to address our secret feelings. It’s true that denying their existence can lead to despair and hopelessness. We should create a culture where it’s okay to express vulnerability and seek help.