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Footballer Dean Windass humbled by support

Dean Windass - Picture from The Telegraph 20 Jan 2012This week, Dean Windass, recently retired footballer has been humbled by the support he received after speaking out about his depression.

Dean

He made a name for himself scoring the winning goal in the Championship Play-offs that brought his home team into the Premier League in 2008. At the height of his career Dean made half a million pounds a year. He has a beautiful wife of 18 years and two great children.

From the outside it looked like the perfect life, but Dean was depressed.

Depression

He says he has cried everyday since his retirement and turned to drinking as a coping mechanism which resulted in him becoming isolated from his family and friends. This week things came to a head for Dean when his depression led him to attempt to take his own life.

Dealing with change.

The loss of the routine and adrenalin of football, a relationship break down with his wife and the recent loss of his father all became too much for an already depressed Dean.

This economic climate is a time of change for all of us. Unemployment and money worries  putting  pressure on our relationships. Famous footballer or not it can be hard to adapt and there is no doubt that these extra pressures can compound feelings of depression.

It’s not all about the money honey

Dean’s story is proof that anyone can experience depression. There is a common misconception that people need a reason to get depressed. But depression is an illness just like physical illnesses and it can affect anyone at anytime. Although Dean has been through a lot in two years since his retirement, it still seemed he should have the perfect life.

Reaching out

As well as reaching out to his friends, family and fans, Dean has put himself on a waiting list to see a counsellor. Dean says that he needs to “sort himself out” and that’s why he is speaking about what he’s been through.

When you’re feeling down it can be really hard to reach out for help. Depression can trick you into thinking that nobody will care and that there is no way out. But the overwhelming support for Dean shows how many people understand and many people have been through it too.

Talking to someone you trust or someone outside the situation like a GP or counsellor can make all the difference.

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