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bentbulldog

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Location : Briarwood, NY (not joking)
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PostSubject: Handling depression?    Mon Aug 26, 2013 9:42 pm

I shouldn't be feeling this way but I do. i try to say Things could be so much worse but it doesn't help. The things that used to bring me joy just leave me empty. My beautiful pipes, the aroma of fresh and burning tobacco don't lift me up anymore.
The worst part is that because I'm uninsured, and not impoverished enough to qualify for subsidies, I can't seek help and must "deal with it"
So many people have it worse but I can't help feeling depressed about everything.
How do we here go about handling depression??
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somedumbjerk

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PostSubject: Re: Handling depression?    Mon Aug 26, 2013 9:47 pm

I ride my bike or run. Do it three days a week and you'll be surprised how much it clears the old demons.
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Fr_Tom

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PostSubject: Re: Handling depression?    Mon Aug 26, 2013 10:01 pm

Talking to a counselor...

These things are complex. There is a difference between feeling discouraged or under the weather and being clinically depressed. There are chemical imbalances I can't pretend to understand and meds that can help the counseling be a lot more effective. The meds w/o the therapy don't seem to have long-term impact from where I sit.

There is help out there. Talk to a counseling center and explain your situation. There are social services agencies that can help with a referral for someone in your situation. Talk to your doctor and make sure it is not a health issue.

If you came to my office and told me what you have told us, I would ask about the balance in your life. Are you eating properly? Exercising? Engaged spiritually? Avoid alcohol while you are sorting this out. Clergy do triage and refer unless they have special training. The ones with special training are not often in parish settings, and so the parish folks do triage and may be able to help coordinate resources.

I can keep you in my prayers. That may or may not be much comfort.


Last edited by Fr_Tom on Mon Aug 26, 2013 10:08 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Rob_In_MO

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PostSubject: Re: Handling depression?    Mon Aug 26, 2013 10:04 pm

bentbulldog wrote:
How do we here go about handling depression??
When I'm down in the dumps I always find pleasure and happiness in blowing up a Rebel base.  Twisted Evil
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smg913

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PostSubject: Re: Handling depression?    Mon Aug 26, 2013 10:44 pm

I feel ya man times get tough and for no reason. when I feel down I think the first step for me to start feeling better mentally is to understand that its ok to feel this way. its not totally and bad thing to feel bad. (if that makes any sense) sometimes feeling down makes it so much sweeter to feel up. don't worry things always come around. the weather impacts me mentally, good and bad.

HOLDFAST
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monbla256

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PostSubject: Re: Handling depression?    Mon Aug 26, 2013 11:15 pm

Fr_Tom wrote:
Talking to a counselor...

These things are complex. There is a difference between feeling discouraged or under the weather and being clinically depressed. There are chemical imbalances I can't pretend to understand and meds that can help the counseling be a lot more effective. The meds w/o the therapy don't seem to have long-term impact from where I sit.

There is help out there. Talk to a counseling center and explain your situation. There are social services agencies that can help with a referral for someone in your situation. Talk to your doctor and make sure it is not a health issue.

If you came to my office and told me what you have told us, I would ask about the balance in your life. Are you eating properly? Exercising? Engaged spiritually? Avoid alcohol while you are sorting this out. Clergy do triage and refer unless they have special training. The ones with special training are not often in parish settings, and so the parish folks do triage and may be able to help coordinate resources.

I can keep you in my prayers. That may or may not be much comfort.
Fr_Tom gives good advice.
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mark
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PostSubject: Re: Handling depression?    Mon Aug 26, 2013 11:34 pm

Fr_Tom wrote:
Talking to a counselor...

There is help out there.
I think he's hit the nail on the head.

There's likely pro bono services available in your location

_________________
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Sometimes I wake up grumpy. Other times I let her sleep.
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Briar Spirit

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PostSubject: Re: Handling depression?    Tue Aug 27, 2013 12:41 am

Do you live in a place where you can provide a home for a Kitten?

Odd question you may say, well here's the rub of it, providing a caring and loving home for a Kitten has absolutely marvellous curative properties for the new carer of said Kitten.

Why is that one might ask!

Well you see in order to provide a stable and nurturing home for the your Kitten one must above all things place the well being of the little Kitten above ones own needs. To provide safety and comfort for our little Kitten one must ensure the well being of oneself so that the care of said Kitten be administered properly and considerately. Ensure the little angel is fed regularly and is kept well out of the way of any life threatening situations rather makes one consider oneself less and the Kittens well being rather more.

The care of a Kitten is no HUGE undertaking, it doesn't require huge amounts of money and doesn't make terribly exhausting demands on one as many other caring occupations will do. You see, when you are feeling rather down in the dumps you can focus your attentions on your Kitten, if you have never been around a Kitten before you will soon find out the myriad delights awaiting one whilst caring for them. A delightful knock on from this is you will have a truly loyal companion who affections are genuine, unlike those of a dog who will love you no matter how you treat it, when your Cat offers you affection it feels profoundly deeper as you will soon learn.

Of course should have you some phobia of cats then one can develop an equally deep relationship with a Parakeet but they are rather more complicated to care for. Whilst my Cleopatra was still alive (she was with me for 14yrs) her snuggling up beside me on the sofa during some rather black bouts of depression were all that got me through it all, she knew when I was struggling within and always came to me in times of deep emotional turmoil, I miss her dearly but having known my cat I feel honoured and shall never forget all she did for me, these days when I struggle within I can close my eyes and call upon fond memories of my Cleo and it really is rather like she is here with me again, she still helps to pull me through those dark times.





To the dog lovers here, do not get all huffy about my dog comment, I also had a HUGE dog for 6 years whom I loved immensely, but dogs are nothing like cats, the emotional connections are profoundly deeper and vastly more meaningful with cats, I adored my Joshua but he wasn't a patch on Cleo.
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AJ

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PostSubject: Re: Handling depression?    Tue Aug 27, 2013 1:17 am

Depression can be a serious matter. If you already feel you need help then don't delay. I know when your down you just don't feel like going through the hassle of searching for it. But you must force yourself to find help. Try a pastor, priest, rabbi, or someone at the Department of Social Services. Tell them you need help right away. Make them understand you're desperate and they will point you to the available free services in your area. There is no need to try to do it alone. Depression is an evil master but can be managed. Just get help right away. I want you to feel the urgency to get help and then convey that urgency to someone that can direct you to the help you need. Depression scares the Hell out of me. I've seen the terrible and sad consequences it can have left untreated.
Hang in there brother and seek the help. We are here for you and we will give you all the encouragement we can muster and if you can think of something else we might do please ask.

AJ
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Gumball

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PostSubject: Re: Handling depression?    Tue Aug 27, 2013 3:45 am

bentbulldog wrote:
How do we here go about handling depression??
Some god advice already here from the Brothers.

I'd say it depends on how 'bad' your depression is. Are we talking full on 24/7 depression? Or more akin to melancholia?

Exercise, diet, hobbies, and pets have been shown to have some positive effect in some cases. However, with 'deep' depression you really should be seeking qualified medical advice. Unfortunately this often means a visit to a general medical practitioner who, because of lack of knowledge of available services, will prescribe anti-depressants before referral for talk therapy.
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PostSubject: Re: Handling depression?    Tue Aug 27, 2013 7:35 am

Low cost/free counseling is hard to find these days. The rout of mental health services that began in the 80s continues, and the Medicaid standard of enabling life to continue rather than perish translates to care  only if the patient is suicidal. Thus if you decide to seek care say exactly that; you are suicidal. That is what will get you treatment.

Depression is sadness of an entirely different order and is characterized as feelings of hopelessness and helplessness. There are feelings of inevitability and correctness that one is depressed. One "futures" with an ironclad certitude, taking what is bleak in the present and covering the future with it. I like the concept of "splitting" as the best psychological explanation. If you're interested in finding out about it, pm me.

Good luck. Depression feels ineluctable. It isn't.
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PostSubject: Re: Handling depression?    Tue Aug 27, 2013 8:49 am

First, understand that what you are going through is far from unusual.  There isn't a person living that hasn't encountered mild depression.  When it goes beyond that or lasts, it is time to seek some help.  I don't believe that state agencies are totally unable to provide assistance.  

You might also check with local hospitals who might give you a referral or at least provide temporary assistance.  That is part of their charter. Another possible source for direction is with one the the 10-step programs, even if you aren't whatever, they do know the resources you need.

If you can't locate the appropriate agency, ask a cop.  It isn't the best way but they do carry that info.  Just don't admit to any suicidal thought or he's obligated to turn you over to forced review.  However, if you do have such thoughts, be frank about it and get the help you deserve.  

I have seen your past posts.  While we have only electronic contact, I know you as one of the good guys.  You deserve local help in resolving these issues.  Know that you deserve that help and make sure it is provided.
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Briarbabe

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PostSubject: Re: Handling depression?    Tue Aug 27, 2013 9:03 am

First of all huge, huge, huge hugs to you. Reaching out for help is one of the hardest things to do when you are grappling with depression. I know from experience. Everything you do seems to take a physical and mental toll on you. I too do not have insurance and fall in that "donut hole" where I can't get the help I need...not to mention the wait lists for those programs are months long. This country is seriously lacking when it comes to treatment for mental health issues...that's another post though.

First read this article here.

There, doesn't that make you feel a little bit better to know that you aren't missing out on much in the first place? Seriously, do some googling if you're up for it. Anti-depressants are a great little scam kept running by Big Pharm. Eff that noise! I'll tell you how I pull myself out of "the black pit" when it hits. I have dealt with depression since the 7th grade. It's a bitch, but you can be happy.

You need to let friends and family in on this. Most likely, they already know, but you need to sit down and tell them that you need help, whether it's someone you can call and talk things out with, someone who gives good advice, someone who can come help you do the physical stuff that is hard to do when you have depression. And also, you need a network of people who know the signs and can tip you off. So often we are slipping into the pit and we don't even know it until we're at the bottom looking up. It helps to have people in your life who can say, "Hey, I noticed you've been withdrawing, aren't your usual self. Are you okay?" Now here's the hard part, you have to make it clear that is what you want from them and they shouldn't keep it to themselves when they see the signs, and you have to be open to hear that as well and not be in denial. Work at it, it will happen.

Use this network as your "therapy". Talk, call them, ask them to come drag you out of the house to do stuff. It's important to have several people in on this mainly because it's a lot to ask of one person. It can be draining, so it gives everyone a break and you still get the help you need.

Start a journal. Write, even if you sit and stare at the page and just write, "This is stupid, I have no idea what the hell I'm supposed to be writing, why am I doing this, this is dumb, this feels silly." KEEP WRITING! Eventually it will start to come out and often just getting that stuff out of your head makes a huge difference.

Exercise. Yeah, I know. Most days you don't even want to get out of bed, let alone exercise. Again, this is where that network of friends and family comes in. Have an exercise date. You don't have to do anything fancy. Just put your shoes on and walk quickly. If you have a friend to walk with, guess what, it's a two-fer: exercise and a chance to talk. If you can, exercise outside. It's so important to get some good 'ol vitamin D. (I believe this is mentioned in the article I linked too. Do yourself a favor and pick up those vitamins/supplements and start taking them. They can be found pretty cheaply at most super markets.) Get as much sunlight as you can. I used to suffer from SAD (damn upstate NY winters) and my doctor actually told me to go tanning twice a week for five minutes, no more. He told me to wear an spf 55 and it helped remarkably!

Pay attention to your diet. This one sucks for me personally, but it's important. Again see the article about what is known as an elimination diet. You basically cut out certain types of foods for a couple of weeks and pay careful attention to how it makes you feel. Two of the biggest culprits are sugars/refined carbs and gluten. Yup, it sucks, but isn't it worth it to feel better in the end? Plus, usually it only takes a week or two of hard and fast restraining from these foods before you don't even want them at all. Your body is addicted to them.

That's my advice and it works for me. I really hope it helps you. It's not an over night cure and it does take some effort, but just keep telling yourself you'r going to get better. The most important thing that I can advise is tell someone, talk to someone. It is imperative that you do not keep this to yourself. Reaching out here, is awesome, but more importantly you need to talk to the people in your life. Good luck!


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Mr. Doody

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PostSubject: Re: Handling depression?    Tue Aug 27, 2013 9:17 am

great advice here from such great people!

given that your access to medical professionals may be limited, i thought i'd toss a few additional things at you.

a few folks have mentioned diet already. do some online research about diet & depression and try some of the mainline suggestions that you find. you might be surprised.

a few folks have mentioned exercise too. huge potential impact. and we're not talking about joining a club or training for an ironman here. get out twice a day for a 20 minute walk. maybe get a dog instead of a cat so you have no option but to ;-) .

animals/pets are a big potential help, btw. totally agree with that advice!

a random piece of advice: shut the f*$king television off. unplug the damn thing. listen to music instead. stop paying attention to the news - it's engineered to be depressing, unfortunately.

depression can (maybe) be made worse by some basic vitamin/mineral deficiencies. do NOT megadose on these things, but google it up and you might find that some B vitamins or vitamin D can help you out some. lots of sunlight fixes the latter ;-) .

there are no magical cures for depression at this point. it's about finding balance (as others said) in your life and in your lifestyle.

i'm a workaholic nutjob who runs multiple businesses and does other such stuff in addition. it's the imbalance in my life and i have to work hard to keep it in check. i know that hugs from my kids, my wife, and my pets really help me move the balance needle in the right direction each day! my dog makes me exercise :-) .

if at all possible, try to talk to a professional. pro bono, or try to scrape the cash up. in my opinion, i'd start with someone who is not an MD - start with a psychologist or social worker who has some experience with people in your line of work and social situation. they've "seen it all" as they say. the MDs will be much much pricier and are extremely likely to rush you towards Rx options, which while efficacious according to the studies, end up being potentially expensive, and might be overkill to start.

good luck with it. we've all been through it and dealt with it at one time. depression happens. it's fixable. knowing that you are struggling with it is the first step towards dealing with it and it's half the battle!

be well,
doody
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docwatson

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PostSubject: Re: Handling depression?    Tue Aug 27, 2013 9:57 am

With all of the great advice shared here I think these posts qualify these Brothers (and Sisters) as professional as I've ever seen in regard to this situation. It confirms to me that Pipe Smokers are the finest people in the world.
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the rev

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PostSubject: Re: Handling depression?    Tue Aug 27, 2013 10:47 am

I am on medication for bi-polar 2 disorder. The depression phases were getting too often and too deep to not effect my life. The meds have helped incredibly. They are a Godsend. There is tons of good advice on here, but I would only add... find a clinic. They have them, they are affordable if you do not have insurance. And if you do want to talk, dm your number and I will give you a call.

rev
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AJ

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PostSubject: Re: Handling depression?    Tue Aug 27, 2013 11:10 am

Briarbabe wrote:
First of all huge, huge, huge hugs to you. Reaching out for help is one of the hardest things to do when you are grappling with depression. I know from experience. Everything you do seems to take a physical and mental toll on you. I too do not have insurance and fall in that "donut hole" where I can't get the help I need...not to mention the wait lists for those programs are months long. This country is seriously lacking when it comes to treatment for mental health issues...that's another post though.

First read this article here.

There, doesn't that make you feel a little bit better to know that you aren't missing out on much in the first place? Seriously, do some googling if you're up for it. Anti-depressants are a great little scam kept running by Big Pharm. Eff that noise! I'll tell you how I pull myself out of "the black pit" when it hits. I have dealt with depression since the 7th grade. It's a bitch, but you can be happy.

You need to let friends and family in on this. Most likely, they already know, but you need to sit down and tell them that you need help, whether it's someone you can call and talk things out with, someone who gives good advice, someone who can come help you do the physical stuff that is hard to do when you have depression. And also, you need a network of people who know the signs and can tip you off. So often we are slipping into the pit and we don't even know it until we're at the bottom looking up. It helps to have people in your life who can say, "Hey, I noticed you've been withdrawing, aren't your usual self. Are you okay?" Now here's the hard part, you have to make it clear that is what you want from them and they shouldn't keep it to themselves when they see the signs, and you have to be open to hear that as well and not be in denial. Work at it, it will happen.

Use this network as your "therapy". Talk, call them, ask them to come drag you out of the house to do stuff. It's important to have several people in on this mainly because it's a lot to ask of one person. It can be draining, so it gives everyone a break and you still get the help you need.

Start a journal. Write, even if you sit and stare at the page and just write, "This is stupid, I have no idea what the hell I'm supposed to be writing, why am I doing this, this is dumb, this feels silly." KEEP WRITING! Eventually it will start to come out and often just getting that stuff out of your head makes a huge difference.

Exercise. Yeah, I know. Most days you don't even want to get out of bed, let alone exercise. Again, this is where that network of friends and family comes in. Have an exercise date. You don't have to do anything fancy. Just put your shoes on and walk quickly. If you have a friend to walk with, guess what, it's a two-fer:  exercise and a chance to talk. If you can, exercise outside. It's so important to get some good 'ol vitamin D. (I believe this is mentioned in the article I linked too. Do yourself a favor and pick up those vitamins/supplements and start taking them. They can be found pretty cheaply at most super markets.) Get as much sunlight as you can. I used to suffer from SAD (damn upstate NY winters) and my doctor actually told me to go tanning twice a week for five minutes, no more. He told me to wear an spf 55 and it helped remarkably!

Pay attention to your diet. This one sucks for me personally, but it's important. Again see the article about what is known as an elimination diet. You basically cut out certain types of foods for a couple of weeks and pay careful attention to how it makes you feel. Two of the biggest culprits are sugars/refined carbs and gluten. Yup, it sucks, but isn't it worth it to feel better in the end? Plus, usually it only takes a week or two of hard and fast restraining from these foods before you don't even want them at all. Your body is addicted to them.

That's my advice and it works for me. I really hope it helps you. It's not an over night cure and it does take some effort, but just keep telling yourself you'r going to get better. The most important thing that I can advise is tell someone, talk to someone. It is imperative that you do not keep this to yourself. Reaching out here, is awesome, but more importantly you need to talk to the people in your life. Good luck!




This ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^is as good as it gets. Solid advice you can take to the bank. Do this and seek professional help NOW. You'll feel better in no time at all. You're in our prayers.

AJ
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pepesdad1

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PostSubject: Handling depression?    Tue Aug 27, 2013 11:47 am

BriarBabe and AJN27511 have it down.  Follow the advice given and you will find relief.
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KevinM



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PostSubject: Re: Handling depression?    Tue Aug 27, 2013 12:14 pm

Two things for you --

First, right now, even simple things may seem "too hard." So don't think about it, just phone your local hospital and ask for referral for depression. Don't think, just do it, like you put a message on this board. Fr. Tom and other posters are on the right track.

Second, your timing makes me think of a good friend who was diagnosed with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). When the days get shorter putting on his pants seems like a daunting project to him.  He finally did go to a doctor who found nothing physically amiss, and sent him to a psychologist who prescribed meds and, voila!, nearly instant normal. For awhile part of his treatment was getting up early and sitting under a flourescent light. It helped, believe it or not. Now, when he feels the blues coming to call, he goes to the doc who changes his meds.

Thing is, you most likely don't need expensive psychotherapy. A doctor needs to check you out to be sure it's not just your thyroid acting weird (actually, it would be good if that's what it is, since it's so cheap and easy to fix) and then get you on medication.

Very best of luck to you, BB. Don't lose another moment that could be spent enjoying your pipe!
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Kyle Weiss

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PostSubject: Re: Handling depression?    Tue Aug 27, 2013 3:28 pm

Laughter and anger.  

Laughter is to hide it from people that can't handle the truth, to make sure friends aren't chased away and jobs can be kept.

Anger is to prove that there's still a part that cares.  It's unrefined and impure fuel, but can be just the boost needed to get to a brighter spot.   All tools are fair game when in the trenches.

After that, it's acknowledging what is reality and what is simply in the mind, and choosing wisely the next steps to take.

Me?  I have too many reasons to be depressed, but no excuses.   No one ever questions reasons or excuses for happiness, so honestly, I let what my brain run its course.  Life isn't happy all the time.  Sometimes it's bullsh*t and it sucks.   Sometimes I choose strength, other times, I have none, so I consciously buckle.   I've always bounced back, because I have a method.  It's ugly, but it keeps me alive and on the right track.  

If I always tried to stop my brain from doing its thing, I would have learned little about myself.  I now know my resolve, strength, weaknesses and ability (and I'm still learning).   It's a long process (i.e., lifetime).  It's been painful, it's been joyful.   It's not something everyone can do.  

But it's honest--no pills, no new-fangled psychology theories, no damned support groups (at least not official ones, I prefer BoB, a few friends, etc--much more effective).  The biggest lie I had to realize is that depression can be "won."  It's not a fight.  It's a situation.   Tact, knowledge and patience work better than fists at times.   The only real conflict is the self, and hence:  don't beat yourself up.   I love you

(...as a note, my "depression" is a secondary reaction [like anxiety] of ASD, I've learned, that's why the pills never worked nor did therapy--they were treating the wound and not the problem--pre-autism times...it's still hard to find specialists that aren't for kids [because it's trendy for parents; as if there aren't autistic adults... 5) ], so I'm on my own...)

That's what I do; this isn't advice.   Good luck finding yours, whoever reads this that needs it.  

Just a shout out that I get it.

Cool
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bentbulldog

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PostSubject: Re: Handling depression?    Tue Aug 27, 2013 11:25 pm

First, I thank you all for the support. I wish I had this much support in RL.

Some info personal
I haven't watched TV in years. I've been married for 6 yrs and have a soon to be 3 yr old daughter. I've been unemployed for 3 yrs and fighting for work, most recently as a barber (which amps up my stress levels and is just work I don't like but do to pay bare expenses) last month I called several clinics that offer pro Bono therapy but living in a population like nyc means I'm on a long waiting list.
I don't have friends to turn to or who call me out of the blue, actually I never had. My close family noticed something a few months ago and had an intervention which ultimately led to: I have to suck it up, be a man and deal with it.
I very much enjoyed tennis and golf when I was able to play but both are expensive and require time, both of which I cannot afford because of the barber job taking all of my time and energy. My daughter is also a handful, and my marriage isn't doing well.
Just a few things that have greatly influenced my mood, which according to my journal has been on an off since last July but became intense after February
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PostSubject: Re: Handling depression?    Wed Aug 28, 2013 4:44 am

I am sure the "suck it up and be a man" was well intentioned but that isn't what you need and it isn't correct. As far as I can see, you are being a man in trying circumstances. I don't know who could do better, frankly.

You are doing all the right things from my point of view that is laudable. Stay the course and we'll all hope for better times.
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pepesdad1

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PostSubject: Handling depression?    Wed Aug 28, 2013 7:51 am

Having been there on numerous occassions....start to think of the positive things about YOU that you like and think is admirable.  You have the traits, you just haven't thought about it in a long while.
You have to like yourself before you can love yourself...if you don't like yourself, you need to find someone who will tell you what your positives are.  You need to know this before you can do anything to improve.
This I know from my own life...I'm sure you are not that different.

Do this and you can start to improve.  It is a long road..lifetime long.

2 cents worth
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KevinM



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PostSubject: Re: Handling depression?    Wed Aug 28, 2013 11:31 am

Holy cow! That was some intervention:-O If you survived that you're in better shape than you might think:-)

Barbering is at least honest, indoor work with no heavy lifting. Isn't there some little thing you could talk yourself into liking about it for the time being?

I know a lot of people these days who are working two jobs -- one guy to whom we sometimes give a lift and a fiver is a short order cook / distribution route person. His comment to me was that it's hard to find one good job, but not-so-good jobs have a lot of turnover, and there's always something open somewhere, so he works two of them and keeps his eyes peeled for something better.

Y'know all the "helpful" folks at your "intervention?" Ask them where they work, are there any openings, and will they be a reference for you? Seriously. Put them to work for you.

As they say in the U.S. Army -- Don't stay in one place thinking. Pick something to do and keep moving. You'll catch a break somewhere along the line.
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Cartaphilus

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Age : 63
Location : East Texas
Registration date : 2011-12-15

PostSubject: Re: Handling depression?    Wed Aug 28, 2013 1:10 pm

There's the key my friend!

"Don't stay in one place thinking. Pick something to do and keep moving. You'll catch a break somewhere along the line."
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