As a kid, Krista Golden loved to play outside in her family’s yard when the weather turned nice. But by her mid-twenties, something changed.
“As I’ve gotten older, I’d rather be by myself and stay in the house during the summer,” says Golden, who is 43 and lives in Ohio. “I just accepted it as, ‘This is me.'”
Last winter, Golden learned that there was a reason for her summertime sadness: Her therapist told her she likely had seasonal affective disorder (SAD). But unlike most people with SAD, who experience dips in mood and energy during the cold, dark months of winter, Golden’s symptoms emerge during the sunny summer months.
“I thought there might be a reverse seasonal affective disorder, but I thought maybe that was something made up,” Golden says. “I didn’t know if it actually existed. How could you be depressed by too much sunlight?”
That’s a question experts are still trying to answer.
Whenever it occurs, SAD can be a difficult condition to diagnose. It’s defined as major