This article is reprinted by permission from NextAvenue.org. The weather person on the local news flashes a big grin and says, “It’s beach season!” Many watching cheer. I don’t. I set my thermostat to 62 Fahrenheit and listen to “The Blizzard” by Judy Collins and other songs that make me think of cooler days and snowstorms.
I’m not alone. While a study in the journal Depression Research and Treatment shows about 5% of the U.S. population have wintertime Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), about 10% of those with SAD experience it in the summer. And according to Stephanie Marcello, chief psychologist at Rutgers University Behavioral Health Care, “those numbers are higher for people living close to the equator.” In places like India where temperatures can reach 120 Fahrenheit, summer SAD is more common than winter SAD. Here I complain a lot, so much so that a good friend introduced me to a Facebook
group called I Hate Summer. These like-minded people call summer “unsticking your thighs from plastic chairs” season. They show quaint photos of snow falling and share a countdown to the first day of autumn. See: Climate change is a retirement issue — how to turn worry into actionA subset of depression “[SAD] is called a subset of depression,” Marcello says. “It’s a reoccurring form of depression that usually begins and ends around the same time every year. In the summer, it’s often in late May through mid-to-late September. It occurs four times more often in women than in men.” “In winter,” Marcello continues, “we know people with SAD are depressed by shorter days, darkness, and cold weather, which keeps them indoors. Summer SAD is a reverse disorder meaning the intense heat, longer days, and disruptions to schedules can trigger the same symptoms found in winter SAD. Not mu …