The simple answer is yes. We women are nearly twice as likely as men to be diagnosed with depression. There are a number of factors that contribute to this, including hormonal changes during puberty, PMS, postpartum depression, and menopause. However, beyond these biological changes, many women get depressed and stay depressed because they feel helpless to change their situation. In those instances, being pro-active is key to helping them feel better.
The first pro-active step to take is talking with your doctor. He or she may then refer you to a mental health professional. That individual may recommend anti-depressants, talk therapy, or a combination of both.
In the meantime, open up about your dad's absence and how it makes you feel. Too many of us fatherless daughters suffer in silence needlessly, feeling ashamed and confused about our dad's rejection. That's a real tragedy because there are so many women who are experiencing the same thing and would love to connect.
Our load immediately lightens once we start talking about our pain. Articulating our emotions helps us gain control over our narrative as does writing in a journal. The ultimate goal is to command our own lives and strip the power from our dads. After all, why do we want to hand over so much influence to a man who wasn't even a part of our lives?
Most significantly, we need to seize control over our own thoughts. This, however, can be difficult (or even impossible) when we're battling depression, and our thinking is distorted. That's why going to your doctor is that first crucial pro-active step.
When you become mentally stronger, you can chase the negativity from your mind and replace it with favorable thoughts. You no longer remain a hostage of your own destructive thinking. Rumi, the Sufi poet and mystic, asked: “Why do you stay in prison when the door is so wide open?” Please get the help that you need so you can savor freedom.