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    Male Depression
    An_253153 posted:
    I've struggled with depression since I was a teenager, now I'm in my mid-30s, hardworking professional, and feeling utterly lost as a person. I know many men struggle with mid-life crises and all that, it's become a cliche in our popular culture, but I thought I'd reach out to try and find other guys who are struggling with depression too.

    I am employed full time, have a life outside work, and I guess that's why this hollowed out feeling is just so inappropriate. Any other men with thoughts?
    brdgs01 responded:
    Are you seeking treatment?
    JudgedinTexas responded:
    You are not alone, truly. My depression started in my early 30s. I was having these feelings of being alone and hollow as you describe. I was eventually diagnosed with PTSD from something that happened in my early teens. The way we deal with traumatic events in the south is to just pretend they never happened. Well my counselor told me that a grain of sand won't kill you but a ton of it will, and you got several big loads of over your early years. Part of my loneliness is due to my seemingly inability to make close friends. I have to be honest with myself, how many men want to be friends with someone so screwed up? It doesn't change the fact that I am as deserving and good as the next guy.

    The one really close male in my life was my cousin, although he and I were night and day as far as lifestyles and life choices, we were always there for each other and we knew each other's secrets and kept them. He was gay and unfortunately got HIV and he died a year ago this last April of complications due to AIDS. It was the hardest thing I have ever done holding his hand and watching him take his last breath. From that moment on I've felt utterly alone. He was the only other person who would remember anything about our childhood together. The one person that I could talk to about anything and not be judged for how I think or feel.

    I've been married now for 27 years and I love my wife dearly, I don't know if I'd be still on this earth without her love and kindness but even with her I have to be guarded in what I say and do. Men and women can never truly know what is like to be the other sex. The life experiences good and bad are so different it's hard to relate to them on a level that my cousin and I had. He and I were only 9 months different in age so we were playmates and friends, we fought like brothers. We had this unique ability to know when the other was going through tough times.

    I called him within 5 minutes of him learning that he had HIV. The social worker was still there and I could hear him in the background crying. At that time he lived in Colorado and I was in Texas. He's did the same with me as well.

    The one thing I would encourage you to do if you haven't already done it is to get a counselor that can help you through this. It does help. The hard part is getting comfortable enough to tell them why you are depressed. Don't wait like I did because it can get worse before you can get better but I promise you there will be many more days you feel great rather than empty. I'm still trying to dig back out of the pit and I've done it before and I will again.
    cjpxx responded:
    I don't see why you should go seek treatment or go get diagnosed. You are not totally gone. You still worried about reputation and speaking professionally on here. What about any of these?

    - selfishness
    - being too serious all the time
    - not able to appreciate when someone picks on you (sometimes they are showing love by picking on you)
    - not able to appreciate jokes that make fun (as in make fun of the state you live in)
    - taking things too personally
    - thinking church fixes things instead of God fixes things
    - thinking that church attendance is important instead of spending time every day in prayer or meditation or concentration about what you think your purpose is or what God is calling you to do when you are not directly spending time working on what God is calling you to do
    - If you work 40 hrs a week and are in a relationship, that is consumes all your time, then you may not have any energy left to focus on if you are making the right decisions and following the path God is leading you to. You can fix that by getting up in the mornings and spending time outside alone as the sun is coming up, but if you are unwilling to fix it, you may need to work on your ambition
    - Do you believe in a God? Many people have a certain belief and they state it but they haven't ever really taken any time to search around and come up with why they believe the way they believe. There is just as much evidence of things like evolution as there is the holy spirit. The fact is no one knows anything, and Christianity explains it the best, but Christians who walk around with blind faith may not get it either. You have to realize first that there's no possible way that you can know how the earth came to be, and realize there's no possible way you can know anything about anything, and then choose for yourself which belief system you think makes the most sense. If there is a God, realize he's talking to idiots. So he's going to give a story or make something happen so we can explain things - but it's not going to hit you in every point because it's just a tool to give an opportunity to search out more. People pray weird. Just freaking pray! Your relationship with a "god" should be like a very good and strong relationship between a father and son or between two best friends. Prayer can give answers, but the whole brainwashing bit messes up most people's conclusions.
    - Are you listening to the right people. If everyone around you is dumb, move! If you have lived in the same place all your live, move! If most of your family is close by you, uneducated, and digging into your personal decisions, move! Moving isn't hard. You start a job hunt. You fly out for some interviews. you get a job. You rent a uhaul. You drive. You unpack boxes. You make new friends. people make it hard or people don't worry about it. Be a person that isn't chained down by fear.
    - Do you hate your job? Then get another one. is there no way to get a better one? Then move! Are you not qualified for a better one? Then go take some tests and get some certifications.
    - Does your lady nag you? Try listening to her, respecting her, or treating her better. Try showing you you love her instead of just saying it and not showing it. There's a song - when a man loves a woman. It's kind dumb in my opinion but I'm not a sappy romantic. Regardless, you know what your lady needs and if you don't do it, she's going to react to your lack of love to her.
    cjpxx responded:
    some more ideas might be:

    - "have a life outside of work" - what kind of life? Are you involved in some kind of ministry? Such as hanging out with teenagers from broken homes or visiting old folks at nursing homes? If you don't weave things like that into your life, you will not feel you about yourself. Find what you are called to do and go do it, and if you don't know, then go do something. Feeding old people who can't feed themselves is something some places don't have. The nurses set the food down and run, and the people can't eat, or they shove food down their throats cause they don't have time for everything. That's not my thing. I could not sit and feed people, but some people can do that. Whatever you can handle you should be doing.
    - Do you think you know what you should do everyday? My idea is that we are all called to something different and are supposed to learn things like love, forgiveness, humility, etc. If you don't feel that way, then maybe exam what you feel and why you feel the way you do.
    - Are you angry towards your family? Are they completely morons? That can be depressing sometimes too because you don't feel like what you are accomplishing is recognized and appreciated. You can prove them wrong or start accomplishing things with someone else in mind. The best thing is to fly for yourself in the very notion that you are flying for that God is calling you to do, but it's hard to do that all the time. Think about who else you are flying for. There is somebody for sure. Do they appreciate you? If not, why not? It that something you can change or it is out of your control? If they are asking you to change something, is it something you need to admit to and own up to and change, or is it that they are living vicariously through you or just never going to accept you for who you are. If they don't support the decisions you make, it's either becuase you are making stupid decisions or because they are not as intelligent as you are and can't understand the decisions you make.
    - Do you give yourself too much credit? Do you make excuses for yourself? Do you give yourself too little credit? Do you not have a sense of security within yourself. If your family doesn't understand you or support you, it's not the end of the world. But if your family plus all your friends plus your co-workers plus your employers all see the same things - it's something you're doing. Sometimes there is just one person in the family that talks too much and you find yourself defending or making decisions when if this one person would get their s h i t straight, you wouldn't have nearly the stress you have. If it's all coming from one person, you don't have to cut them off to get away from them. You can just simply decide that their opinion is not valuable to you if they don't know what they are talking about and leave it at that, and ignore them
    - Are you causing drama. Men don't in the same way women do - but the way they can be drama queens might be something like punishing their wife for not acting exactly how they want her to act or controlling things or getting angry over stupid stuff. You know you cause drama when you have two choices and the choice you choose makes it a lot worse then the other choice you had. for example, taking someone off facebook may cause more drama than what it's worth. Or it may cause none at all. You know that person. You know about how they are going to react. Or leaving the conversation, leaving the room, not showing up to a family wedding, etc. because you don't like something - does it help or does it make things worse. I have had to leave before but I only leave if it makes things better. Some people passively do things that makes things worse because all they care about is themselves and their own feelings or reputation. That selfishness overtime can cause depression
    - Do you laugh? If you don't, figure out who to be around until you do

    Hope some of those help

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