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  1. #1
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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.
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  3. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by LadyTheranna View Post
    Today, when I woke up, my issues were shouting at me... despair... loss, no solution.

    Then, my phone rang and I was offered a job. I did a phone interview on Monday and I did a live interview yesterday. They said I'd hear from them at the end of this week. They called me 21 hours after the interview. For now, my spirits are boosted.

    7 days ago, I tried to end it and today, my life has change. I'm not at 180 yet but I'm stepping in the right direction. I'm going to take the elation of that phone call and hold on to it.

    And as I'm typing this, another company where I did a preliminary exam yesterday, just called me for a phone interview.

    The light shines.
    You are a fabulous person! Sometimes life is unfair, but that doesn't make you any less wonderful.
    People will tell you anything but what they do is always the truth. P. J. O'Rourke

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  6. #32
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    Quote Originally Posted by LadyTheranna View Post
    Today, when I woke up, my issues were shouting at me... despair... loss, no solution.

    Then, my phone rang and I was offered a job. I did a phone interview on Monday and I did a live interview yesterday. They said I'd hear from them at the end of this week. They called me 21 hours after the interview. For now, my spirits are boosted.

    7 days ago, I tried to end it and today, my life has change. I'm not at 180 yet but I'm stepping in the right direction. I'm going to take the elation of that phone call and hold on to it.

    And as I'm typing this, another company where I did a preliminary exam yesterday, just called me for a phone interview.

    The light shines.

    High Fives Lady!! No matter what happens, give yourself a big hug! You have so much to give this old world, we need caring people like you. Go knock their socks off!



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  8. #33
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nik Notorious View Post
    I can't say this with any degree of certainty, but I know that at least in my case, love is enough. Love for life, love for family. If not for my daughter's love, and my love for her, I doubt I'd still be here today. But I knew, even in my most messed up of times, that my death would leave a daddy sized hole in her heart that nothing would ever be able to fix. So I hung on for her until I was strong enough to hold on for myself.
    How old is your daughter? Mine is 8.

    She is spending time w her grandparents this summer, and, God willing, will be home next week. I can't wait!

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  10. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sponge Bob View Post
    How old is your daughter? Mine is 8.

    She is spending time w her grandparents this summer, and, God willing, will be home next week. I can't wait!
    She turned seven back in June. Before this summer, I hadn't seen her in two years. Largely because of so many of my issues. I was in a bad place, and I would have done more harm than good. This year, though, I was in the place I needed to be. She had a wonderful time out here, and I was on cloud nine the entire time.

    And I took so, so, so many pictures.
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  12. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by LadyTheranna View Post
    Today, when I woke up, my issues were shouting at me... despair... loss, no solution.

    Then, my phone rang and I was offered a job. I did a phone interview on Monday and I did a live interview yesterday. They said I'd hear from them at the end of this week. They called me 21 hours after the interview. For now, my spirits are boosted.

    7 days ago, I tried to end it and today, my life has change. I'm not at 180 yet but I'm stepping in the right direction. I'm going to take the elation of that phone call and hold on to it.

    And as I'm typing this, another company where I did a preliminary exam yesterday, just called me for a phone interview.

    The light shines.
    That's awesome news, congratulations! Here's hoping one of those opportunities is the right fit for you. Stay strong, my friend. You are one of the most bad ass people I've ever come across.
    This space for rent, inquire within.

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  15. #36
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    Truth time. I'm in god-awful pain right now. Horrible, horrible, horrible. And from what? -- Just trying to cook supper. It depresses the crap out of me, makes me so angry that I can't do the simplest of things without my body giving me horrors for it. Pisses me off EXTREMELY. I've yet to find a pain killer I can tolerate, one that doesn't turn me into a zombie, so I drink alcohol. I'm on my second drink, and it's helping a "little", but not too much. I just wish I was normal, and could function normally. I wish I could do what most folks don't even give a second thought about. I can't do a damned thing without experiencing god-awful pain. I'm as hard-headed as they come, and I fight this with all my might. But it just totally pisses me off that I can't do ANYTHING without also dealing with agony. But I'm not giving up, and I won't have a pity-party. If I didn't have this damned pain, I think I could whip the world.



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  18. #37
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    Quote Originally Posted by HeyJude View Post
    Truth time. I'm in god-awful pain right now. Horrible, horrible, horrible. And from what? -- Just trying to cook supper. It depresses the crap out of me, makes me so angry that I can't do the simplest of things without my body giving me horrors for it. Pisses me off EXTREMELY. I've yet to find a pain killer I can tolerate, one that doesn't turn me into a zombie, so I drink alcohol. I'm on my second drink, and it's helping a "little", but not too much. I just wish I was normal, and could function normally. I wish I could do what most folks don't even give a second thought about. I can't do a damned thing without experiencing god-awful pain. I'm as hard-headed as they come, and I fight this with all my might. But it just totally pisses me off that I can't do ANYTHING without also dealing with agony. But I'm not giving up, and I won't have a pity-party. If I didn't have this damned pain, I think I could whip the world.
    I am so, so sorry Jude. I wish I knew a magic combination of words that could make your pain more bearable. For whatever it's worth, if it's worth anything at all, you have friends here. We're rooting for you.
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  21. #38
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    Nik, I don't know what sort of music you like. Whether or not you're a fan of the 70s Rock band KISS, check out some of their individual autobiographies on www.barnesandnoble.com

    I am really fed up w those who diminish & demean wealthy celebrities, whether the people were in entertainment, politics, commerce, whatever, because "They have access to treatments we don't have." Boo hoo!

    Apparently, Peter Criss, the "cat man" drummer, around the early 80s ended up alone & in a hotel room, virtually broke, & w a gun in his mouth. Thinking of his then 12 year old daughter made him give up that action & try to make something of his life. This was a man w substance problems, & I do believe by then his contract w KISS had been terminated.

    Front man Paul Stanley was born w a deformity & some degree of deafness in that ear. He got virtually no family support & was teased ruthlessly by both kids & adults. In spite of it, he made it big in music, his dream, but he still kept people at a distance except for his long term best friend, Gene Simmons, & lead a lonely life off stage.

    Sometimes when I feel the misfit, why me? I think of Ace Frehley. He in getting sober went thru stuff I've been thru in getting along w people. In an interview which can be accessed on youtube, and other interesting behind the scenes looks can be accessed there, he quoted his former bandmate Paul Stanley referring to him as an "anti-Semite". "Um, OK. I'm engaged to a Jewish women. I've worked side by side in the music business for decades w Jewish people. Now I'm an anti-Semite? At one time, people could say I was drunk or stoned, unreliable, couldn't hold onto a gig. They were right. But now that I've cleaned up my act, they can't say that any more, so they're grasping at straws."

    About 5-6 years ago, I was going thru the same at work. People couldn't say I was a screw up, or violated anyone's confidentiality, or mistreated anyone, so they were grasping at straws & even making stuff up that most likely never took place. One made up incident was reported when everyone knew layoffs were scheduled. One woman, whose thank God since left, would forever put me on report for petty stuff. She couldn't even get off her own rear end to pick up her supplies, but she always came up w the energy to tattle tale on Sponge Bob for little stuff.

    It's kind of interesting to see the behind the scenes look at lives of celebrities to see that in some ways, they aren't that different from the average person & go thru some of the same things.

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  23. #39
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nik Notorious View Post
    I am so, so sorry Jude. I wish I knew a magic combination of words that could make your pain more bearable. For whatever it's worth, if it's worth anything at all, you have friends here. We're rooting for you.

    Thanks Nik, it really helps to know there are folks here who care. I've been referred to a Neurosurgeon, don't have an appointment yet. But putting all my hope in him. Which is dangerous territory, of course, but it's the best hope I have right now.



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  25. #40
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nik Notorious View Post
    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.<snipped>
    A big for one of my favorite Hannity friends.

    Quite a stirring OP.

    I have been severely depressed in my life, luckily it did not leave me in a suicidal state or feeling indifferent to my demise.

    There was the feeling of having been abandoned by the world though.

    I knew I was, like you said, broken on the inside, but that is one of the scourges of depression, it is on the inside, where others can't see it, so unless they have been there themselves they don't understand it, they can't relate to it, they think it is "all in your head", which may be true, but not in the way they think.

    One of the loneliest and saddest and most painful days of my life was the day I tried to express to my wife that I was feeling depressed and how it was affecting me and she looked me in the eyes and angrily replied "What the hell do you have to be depressed about?"

    Zero understanding, zero compassion, zero everything I needed at the time and everything I didn't need.

    You hang in there Nik, we don't cross post like we did at one time here, but I do look forward to reading what you have to say when I see you on.

    Tis the Season ... Luke 2:7-14

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  28. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by LadyTheranna View Post
    I'm *****footing around sharing my own struggles. I will say this. I can go for months, just fine. But there are moments... stretches of days when the battle is daily... where I teeter on the edge. I usually can pull myself back but there are moments when I can't pull back. I've gone over the edge twice... and I had a thorough plan for ending it another time.

    Robin Williams' death strikes a chord... asphyxiation was my last attempt as well, different but close.

    Today is a so so day. And tomorrow, I'll wake up and fight through in order to live, I hope. My friends in the know have made me promise to reach out to them before doing something final. But the thought is there, it floats around.
    My life is fuller by having just known you across a computer keyboard here. The talks we had in the Irony thread, and a little more in other threads, it has enriched my life. There is all the music you shared that I had no idea about and the discussions about your family and your job and your life in general. I may just be an old cranky curmudgeon, and I may not be in the know, but I feel justified in saying this old world needs people like you in it, for as long as it can possibly hold on to you. I pray there is always someone there for you, between you and that edge. I pray that for you and Nik and for all those who are broken inside.
    Tis the Season ... Luke 2:7-14

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  30. #42
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    Sponge Bob, I've never really liked KISS all that much, but I'll definitely check out that bio. Thanks for the recommendation.
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  32. #43
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    Quote Originally Posted by LouC View Post
    A big for one of my favorite Hannity friends.

    Quite a stirring OP.

    I have been severely depressed in my life, luckily it did not leave me in a suicidal state or feeling indifferent to my demise.

    There was the feeling of having been abandoned by the world though.

    I knew I was, like you said, broken on the inside, but that is one of the scourges of depression, it is on the inside, where others can't see it, so unless they have been there themselves they don't understand it, they can't relate to it, they think it is "all in your head", which may be true, but not in the way they think.

    One of the loneliest and saddest and most painful days of my life was the day I tried to express to my wife that I was feeling depressed and how it was affecting me and she looked me in the eyes and angrily replied "What the hell do you have to be depressed about?"

    Zero understanding, zero compassion, zero everything I needed at the time and everything I didn't need.

    You hang in there Nik, we don't cross post like we did at one time here, but I do look forward to reading what you have to say when I see you on.

    Thank you Lou, I truly appreciate that. I still look fondly on the old days in Irony. If I remember correctly, you were the all time leader in being the Irony Thread Team Leader, with me a close second. I don't post as much as I used to these days, but I've been itching to make a comeback. Frankly, I think the forums need a little more Notorious.
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  35. #44
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    Quote Originally Posted by Nik Notorious View Post
    Thank you Lou, I truly appreciate that. I still look fondly on the old days in Irony. If I remember correctly, you were the all time leader in being the Irony Thread Team Leader, with me a close second. I don't post as much as I used to these days, but I've been itching to make a comeback. Frankly, I think the forums need a little more Notorious.
    Glad to see you around again Nik! I hope you're doing well.

    I really feel for all of you mentioning depression and suicidal thoughts. I have never been like that myself, but I do empathize. I have been depressed by external things and have anxiety at random times. My mom is bipolar/sociopathic and snapped today. It's not easy watching a loved one struggle, esp when it's the angry type of illness where they say cruel things and do things no mother should ever say or do to her children. But I know she's sick and on/off meds so it's just hard to know what to do from the outside. I tell her I love her but a big part of me will never forgive her and wants nothing to do with her anymore. But I feel like I'd be failing her on something thats maybe not entirely her fault. Idk what to do anymore.

    Mental illness is a terrible thing for everyone involved, and I wish more people truly understood it without having to experience it directly or indirectly.

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  38. #45
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    Back when i was in college, if I got depressed I watched "The Killing Fields."

    I know, they say when you are depressed you are supposed to watch happy things and think happy thoughts.
    But watching it helped.
    It made me feel like I don't have any problems.

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