@christopherson329: I've dealt with depression and social anxiety for as long as I can remember, certainly into my mid-teens, if not farther back. I even had some OCD issues as a very young kid. That I've got pretty much under control. This is true of social anxiety, too, when it comes to meeting people professionally and networking and stuff. In private, personal stuff it's still pretty bad. If it wasn't for mutual friends and online dating, I'd be pretty screwed in terms of my love life --- I'll say that much. I'm hyper sensitive to people's opinions of me, and rejection of any kind just sort of ruins me for a while.
The depression has gotten much, much worse as I've gotten older, however. It's ruined relationships and affected my health because of the way it affects my eating, sleeping, and drinking habits. It's become a constant struggle just get about and do normal things, let alone keep up with my workload as I transition into professional life. People who've never dealt with it just don't understand how rough it can be to go about your day, or even live with yourself. Everyone I've gotten really close to over the last decade has been struck by it: I'm sweet, gentle, and thoughtful one minute --- something few people get to see anyway--- and then I'm a thoughtless brute the next. What can I say to the people who I care about who I snap at or ignore if I'm feeling shitty? "I'm sorry. Life is awful and frustrating. I feel worthless and angry for no good reason, and I'm taking it out on you when all you want to do is love and care for me." It really doesn't cut it, but that's sort of the way the illness works.
I've started seeking help recently. I haven't started the meds, but everyone keeps saying they are thing. I dunno. It's hard, dudes. It gets harder all the time, or at least it has for me. Crippling sorrow: your milage may vary.
Then again, you're not alone. That's the one thing I've learned over the last few months, actually talking to people about this shit. That's kept me going through everything. The people who do suffer like you, when they do find out, they tell you and they are there for you. Your friends, your real friends, will try their fucking hardest to help you any way they can, even when they have no idea what it's like. If nothing else, there are thousands of medical professionals who will always, always be there for you. Look for help and comfort; it's there and it's not far.