Margaret Robinson Rutherford, PhD, is a clinical psychologist with more than twenty-five years of experience in treating individuals and couples for depression, anxiety and relationship issues. Voted Arkansas' Private Practitioner of the Year in 2009 for her volunteer contributions to the mental health community, she continued those efforts by offering her direct and open therapeutic style to the general public through blogging and podcasting, with goals including education and a decrease in the stigma around psychological treatment. Her popular blog posts and podcasts on Perfectly Hidden Depression have reached thousands since 2012, as she sheds light on another presentation of what can be the deadly disease of depression.
"Perfectly Hidden Depression illustrates a critical truth
that we need to face: sometimes, the people who appear to have it
all together are falling apart. Margaret Rutherford shows us that
hiding depression through perfectionism can be deadly. This book
shows you how to recognize depression in yourself, overcome the
stigma, shed unhealthy perfectionism, and embrace your imperfect
--Sarah Fader, CEO of Stigma Fighters, and coauthor of The 10-Step Depression Relief Workbook--Sarah Fader
"Finally, a book that takes a deep dive into what psychologists have called 'masked depression, ' but has no diagnostic label. If you are a self-critical perfectionist, and are suffering in silence, this book offers a pathway to getting the help you need. If you know you are in pain but didn't have the words to ask for help and connect with others, Margaret Robinson Rutherford's book will offer you a new beginning. You can look forward to transformational self-insights that will help you move from shame to self-compassion."
--Lara Honos-Webb, PhD, worldwide attention deficit disorder (ADD) expert; clinical psychologist; and author of The Gift of ADHD, The Gift of ADHD Activity Book, The Gift of Adult ADD, The ADHD Workbook for Teens, and Listening to Depression--Lara Honos-Webb, PhD
"For anyone who feels like they don't 'deserve' the label of depression, or for anyone who finds themselves silently stuck in cycles of self-hate, Margaret Rutherford's work on perfectly hidden depression strikes in a place most literature on depression misses, speaking to a whole group of people who suffer without acknowledging or feeling worthy of their own pain. I recognized myself in these pages, and wish a younger version of myself had been introduced to this book and the helpful reflection prompts within it. I hope it reaches the people who need it."
--Sarah Schuster, editorial director of contributors at The Mighty--Sarah Schuster
"In Perfectly Hidden Depression, Margaret Rutherford shines a powerful and revealing spotlight on an important aspect of depression that receives far too little attention. As she describes in exquisite detail, the relationship between perfectionism and depression is an intense one; it creates a toxic internal environment that robs worthy people of the ability to enjoy even true successes, since perfection rarely, if ever, exists in the real world. Rutherford's compassion and wisdom is matched by her courage in challenging all of us to expand our understanding of depression in its diverse appearances. The guidance and support she provides here will be invaluable for anyone struggling with these debilitating issues."
--Michael D. Yapko, PhD, clinical psychologist, and author of Depression Is Contagious and Keys to Unlocking Depression--Michael D. Yapko, PhD
"Margaret Rutherford presents a compassionate perspective on thoughts and feelings rarely revealed. These 'secret truths' lie at the heart of Perfectly Hidden Depression. Innovative, self-guided exercises throughout the book encourage readers to explore their individual 'secret truths' privately at their own pace. This book offers a unique opportunity for personal growth and contentment."
--Leah Klungness, PhD, psychologist in private practice, and coauthor of The Complete Single Mother--Leah Klungness, PhD
"Margaret Rutherford's book, Perfectly Hidden Depression, is a unique perspective on a common, but often unrecognized, cause of depression. People who experience this version of depression almost always seem fine on the outside, and give little, if any, signs of their inner suffering.... Driven by perfectionism, unrealistic demands on themselves, and harsh internal self-criticism and shame, they often suffer this hidden form of depression. They feel stuck in an inexplicable trap of depression, and do not know how to change and heal this.
This book is exceptionally written. It clearly describes this
condition and maps out concrete strategies for confronting these
problems. Aside from many realistic strategies for confronting
hidden depression is a core feature of developing more
self-compassion and recognizing one's vulnerability.... I highly
recommend this amazing book to those who suffer from depression,
the significant others in their lives, as well as
--John Preston, PsyD, therapist, author, and professor emeritus at the California School of Professional Psychology and Alliant International University--John Preston, PsyD