Summer SAD

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Summer SAD
This is a community for people who suffer from Summer SAD aka Reverse Seasonal Depression aka Seasonal Affective Disorder.

A few symptoms of Summer SAD:

* Anxiety
* Insomnia
* Irritability
* Weight loss
* Decreased appetite
* Depression
* Loss of energy
* Social withdrawal

If the following quotes sound similar to things you've said before, you've just found your new home.

"Other times of year, I'm basically an upbeat person," Smith says. "But when summer hits, it's like I'm operating on a low battery. Last summer, I had no desire to eat, I lost 15 pounds, I had anxiety attacks and I stopped seeing any of my friends. Even going to the grocery store felt like an impossible task."

"The way I experience it is that I feel assaulted by the bright light and glare of the summer sun, and I also feel extremely low energy when the weather is hot. I withdraw socially, find it extremely difficult to concentrate and to work, and feel more and more desperate for relief- I have felt like driving off a cliff or throwing myself out of a window- not necessarily to die, just to "break free". Smoggy, hazy, bright days are the worst."

''I actually feel kind of attacked by the sun,'' the designer said. ''I feel like it's piercing into me, and I start to feel more and more desperate to escape it. I have a hard time organizing and managing daily life. By August, I'm barely able to function and don't really recover until autumn. October is reliably a good month. I'm waking up, and I feel like I'm being released from my summer, what I would call, jail cell.''

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A little bit about why I'm starting this community and who I am:

All of my life I've hated the summer. My summer experiences include feeling like I'm being cooked alive, feeling like I'm being blinded by the glare of the sun, feeling listless and miserable, being unable to accomplish simple tasks, being irritable, nauseous and depressed, feeling confined, feeling like I was putting a lot of effort into just surviving and generally feeling like I would rather crawl out of my body than endure summer weather.

For years a couple close friends and I joked that we had the exact opposite of seasonal depression, feeling very similar symptoms at the onset of summer that many other people seem to feel at the onset of winter. It seemed only a small handful of people really understood where I was coming from. My feelings were not rooted in laziness, drama, goth culture, or vanity.

I would frequently warn people I met during fall/winter months what would "happen" to me in the summer. I would try to forewarn them that I would become increasingly unable to be social or leave the house and the only thing on my mind when it's hot is how to live through it with some sense of sanity in tact. In essence saying, "Sorry, I just won't have the energy available to be invested in anything else."

It's very isolating and frustrating to live with summer SAD. Most people just don't understand how it's possible to hate sunny days and hot temperatures. If you happen to mention looking forward to the rain in the forecast they will look at you like you're nuts. Listening to people rejoicing all summer long about "What a great day it is!" or all winter long about how much "The rain sucks" has somewhat of an alienating effect, putting one at odds with the social norm.

Very recently I came across an article (one of the quotes is above) about a woman who has summer SAD and I almost jumped out of my chair because I was so, SO happy to read about someone who feels the same way I do. The feeling of camaraderie and fellowship filled my heart. I felt validated in my experience the way I never had before, it was priceless. I went searching for more articles, more people, more stories and found several of them. I know there are more of us out there!

Which brings me to the reason I've started this community. I would like to provide a place where we can be ourselves, trade tips for dealing with summer weather, where we can complain if we need to and be heard with a sympathetic ear. I would also encourage sharing photographs, art and links to things that are inspirational, informative, helpful etc...

There isn't a rigid profile for those of us who have reverse SAD and I hope that people of all ages and walks of life would be able to come here and feel at home. Honestly, if even one person reads this and feels a sense of validation and fellowship I'll be really happy.

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