Hi all, this is the 1st time I've posted on any message boards concerning depression but my life pretty much sucks and I'm hoping to learn how others have successfully coped with depression. This will be a long post. Just a little background. I am a 36 yr old male, divorced, and don't have any children.
Like a lot of you, I had a miserable childhood. My father physically, mentally, and sexually abused me from the time I was 3 yrs old ( my earliest memeories ). The sexual abuse was not too severe and without getting too specific, I was not raped or anything like that. It only lasted a year or two when I was going through puberty. The real damage came from the constant emotional abuse. I was physically abused up to the time I was 16 yrs old when I finally fought back and broke his jaw. However, the emotional abuse continued. He died a few yrs ago and I did not even shed a tear. Unfortunately, I still have nightmares from time to time (once or twice a month).
I pretty much was lonely and sad through out my whole childhood. My mother tried to protect/ defend me but she was not around 24/7. I am not real close to her because a part of me has never forgiven her for not putting the safety of her children 1st and for not leaving my father. I think the only reason I survived my childhood was the fact I was heavily involved in sports. Guess it served as a distraction.
I was depressed through out college, had a hard time in social settings and had horrible luck with women, even though I was attractive and in good physical shape. By my Junior year, I was finally feeling better about myself, had more friends, and things were looking up. Later in the year, I met my 1st true love. A year later, we were married and for the 1st time in my life, I did not feel alone anymore.
The marriage was a pretty good one overall, especially the 1st 6 yrs or so (marriage lasted 11 yrs). Our love actually seemed to strengthen with each passing year and we soon were not just lovers, but each other's best friend. After being married for a year, I got a job as a police officer while my wife went back to school and worked part time as a waitress.
Things started going downhill when I got involved in a shooting incident while on duty (bank robbery in progress). Basically, after this shooting, I started having panic attacks while on duty. At 1st, it only happened occassionally. This went on for 4 yrs and I told nobody about it. Over the 4 yr period, the attacks happened with more regularity. I became depressed and basically crawled in a hole. I stopped going out with friends, and I started neglecting my wife sexually and emotionallly. I also stopped working out and put on like 40 lbs.
She reacted by hanging out at bars after work with her friends/co-workers more often and was coming home at 2, 3, even 4 am several times a week. During this time, I also started playing computer games, some of which were MMPORGs. I think I did this as a means to escape reality. Anyways, after 4 yrs of things progressively getting worst, I finally cracked and went to see the police psychologist. I was diagnosed diagnosed with PTSD and went out on a medical retirement.
This just resulted in me becoming more depressed. I felt as if my identity was stripped from me and had no idea what I was going to do with my life, since the only education I had was my bachelors in Criminal Justice. I was taking meds at this point and seeing the police psychologist on a regular basis but he did not help at all. Basically, he was an enabler and just listed to me when I needed someone to put their foot in my butt and tell me to get my act together.
I basically became a bum and just played on my computer all day. This went on for about 8 months and my wife finally gave up on me. She ended up having an affair with a guy she knew from one of the bars she hung out. He was 16 yrs older than her. I found out after it had gone on for aprox 1 month (she finally admitted to it after coming home around 6 am twice in one week). She then asked for a divorce. A month later, she moved out and 6 months later, the divorce was final in Jan 06. I have not heard or spoken to her in over a year. Don't know where she lives and don't have her phone number (deleted it months ago). Since the divorce, I did sell all my computer games and swore to never play them again.
During this time, I had a few good months were I got back in shape, dated a few women, and was feeling good. However, I fell back in depression last summer and still have not come out of it. I have switched meds 3 times now with no results. I got out of shape again but started working out regulary about 2 months ago. I'm slowly getting back in shape but do not feel any better mentally.
I have 0 money, went through bankruptcy about 6 months ago, lost the house, and now live in an apt which sucks after owning a home for almost 10 yrs and being 36 yrs old just reinforces my feelings of being a failure. I have no money even though I did retire from the department. My pension is only 50% which equates to about $2,000 a month after paying the medical insurance (which sucks). I have not seen a psychiatrist since last year because I cannot afford the weekly $30 co-payments and this is only for the ones in the insurance network, none of which I liked. The guy I was seeing was out of the network and was costing me $125 a visit with 60% being reimbursed back to me after I mailed in a claim.
I did get a real estate license hoping to make some extra money but am failing at it miserably. Only completed one sale in the past 8 months. I just seem to lack the energy and motivation to go out there and prospect on a consistent basis (cold calling and knocking on doors). I have not been on a date in over 6 months, pretty much gave up on that. Most of the women I have dated I was not attracted to, the chemistry was just not there, and the attractive ones have either been crazier than myself or very selfish/shallow.
I'm just at a point where I do not know what to do. I have very few friends (they mostly hang out at bars all the time and get drunk). I'm tired of the bar scene so I spend most of my evenings at home, being lonely, and not being able to sleep as in tonight considering its almost 5 am and I have not slept at all. I am just tired of being lonely, broke, not succeeding in my career, and unhappy all the time. I am beginning to think this is my life and there is nothing I can do about it. The only time I was happy was during my marriage prior to the shooting.
Any advice or suggestions on what to do have a happy life or do most people with depression suffer the rest of their life with it?