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  1. #1
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    Jun 2005
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    Default My own battle with depression and suicidal thoughts.

    In light of Robin Williams death, I thought that I'd like to share my own story. I've seen a lot of differing reactions out there, and one thing is clear to me. Some people still don't get it. Clinical depression, being suicidal, isn't something we can just get over. It's not about just being sad. It doesn't matter what, or who, we are surrounded by. Money can't cure it. Fame and respect don't soothe it. A box full of kittens won't ease it. Being that depressed is being fundamentally broken on the inside.

    My own story starts as a teenager. I was an angry child. I had rage issue. I hated myself, even though I never really could pin down why. Back then, it was just brushed aside as common teenage angst. Something I'd grow out of someday. And I did. Or, I thought I did. Adulthood brought me some good friends, good jobs, and eventually a wife and child. I was happy. The demons, however, never really went away. Even in my happiness, I found myself wondering if everyone would be better without me in their lives. They don't really like you, I thought. They just pretend to laugh at your jokes. If you weren't related to them, your family wouldn't choose you. For the most part, I was able to fight those thoughts off. I didn't really take them all that seriously. And anyway, I was too busy drinking those voices into oblivion to pay them any mind.

    Yeah, I drank. A lot. I had to do something to deal with my increasing feelings of self loathing. As you might expect, it didn't help. It only made things worse. To make a long story, well, slightly less long, I wound not drinking away my emotions, but my family instead. I lost almost everything. The wife and daughter I thought I'd never have moved away. So I withdrew from the world, drinking and licking my wounds. That's when the demons really kicked into high gear. All that old self hatred came back in a big way. "See," they told me, "we were right. You are worthless. You screwed it all up, just like we said you would." So I drank more to shut them up.

    Finally, I wound up on a couch at my mother's apartment. There, roughly two years ago, I gave up. I won't call what I did an actual suicide attempt, but I knew that I could die from my actions, and I didn't care. I drank all the beer I could afford to drink, then added a handful of pills into the mix. Then another. Vicodin, Zanax, whatever I could find. I never said to myself, I'm going to die today, but I sure as hell didn't care if I did.

    I came to two days later. I wish I could say my experience was uneventful, but it was not. I lashed out. I said things I can never take back. I nearly drove away my entire family. But I lived. Everything I did, all the things I said, that damage is repairable because I lived. Had I not, the last memory loved ones would have had of me would be that of a hateful, drunken fool, doing his best to hurt them. Thankfully, that's not the case. Call it the grace of god, call it dumb luck, call it what you will, but I'm still here.

    Since that day, life has improved a great deal. I went on to find another good job. I've made some good friends. Hell, I even managed to fall in love again, even if it didn't last. I've carved out a nice life for myself. Here's the thing, though. I'm not cured. My depression didn't magically go away. In moments of weakness, I can still feel like I don't deserve any of it. I still feel guilty for the things I've done, and that I'm the only one that can properly punish myself for them. But now I know I'm strong enough to fight those thoughts.

    This is how I look at it. I'm on a winning streak. I've beaten suicide for thirty five years now. I beat it this morning when I rose from bed. I beat it just now when I took that breath. I have to stay on guard, though. I'm the one that has to keep winning, because suicide only has to win the once. So I take the small victories and run with them.

    My point in all this, if I have one, is to let folks know that they aren't alone. There are others out there who are going through what you are going through. I don't know the exact nature of your pain. I probably never will. But I know what it can do to you if you let it. And I'm telling you today, you don't have to let it. Reach out to someone. Call the suicide hotline. Look online for like minded people that can help. Just don't go through this thing you have alone, because alone, the odds aren't in your favor. Know that you are strong. Know that you are loved. Know that you deserve the good things you have in your life. And if you feel like you don't have anything good yet, know that those things are coming. As a teenager, I thought I'd never be truly happy. I had to wait a while, but I did find that happiness. And let me tell you, it was worth the wait. So please, don't go through this alone. You are stronger than you realize. After all all, you've been beating suicide your entire life.
    This space for rent, inquire within.

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  3. #991
    Join Date
    Nov 2008
    500 miles away from home
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sponge Bob View Post
    I'm just so tired of these pot calling the kettle black types--and we have a lot. Some think their kids should be exempt from reading & math assessments--and they call folks in & from the southern states stupid & ignorant.

    I lived most of my life in Florida. I finally snapped & decided my husband should buy in his own name only when my trainee made a pejorative remark about "stupid, backwards people in places like Atlanta ".

    I have numerous relatives & friends there, including a family law attorney & retired police officer, & have always felt welcome there. Some mush for brains whose never even been there is going to insult them?

    I'm just tired of being someplace where I'm regarded as second class because I didn't grow up or go to school near here.
    Sponge, my experience with buying a home was that it caused me to sweat the biggest bullets I've ever sweat in my life. For me, it was a major life changing thing, because it is a huge financial investment. Having said that, other people seem to buy and sell houses all the time without a problem. Again, for me, it was because I wanted an "always" house/home. We rented for years, and moved around a lot. I was ready to settle down in one place and stay there. The house we bought was not my "dream house", but it was good enough, and we have been here almost 25 years.

    If I had it to do over again, I would NOT have bought a home in Alabama, but would have bought in Florida. While Florida does have higher property taxes, they don't have State Income Tax, and they don't tax groceries. They also have better BCBS Health Insurance, and much better hospitals and doctors. Lots more good reasons to live in FL vs AL, but the ones I listed are the first to come to mind.

    Then there is the thing of being from Florida, my home State, and I miss it so much. There is the old saying, "To thine own self be true", and I am glad that you are reaching out for that. Follow your heart, do what feels right for you. You will never regret listening to your "gut feeling". Go with it, and trust it. Don't feel like you have to do something that is not your heart's desire. Do some research on homes for sale in FL, and see what you can find.

    Nothing is perfect, of course, and there will always be problems to deal with. But if you are at least in a place where you feel welcome, a place where you can relax and feel at home, that will give you an enormous source of joy and contentment, and the strength you need to overcome whatever future problems might come up. Just my 2 cents, of course, and based on my own mistakes when choosing where to buy and where to live.

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