Men & Depression

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Taygeta
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Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 164
   Posted 10/11/2010 8:00 PM (GMT -6)   
As a general rule, most men don't talk about personal issues very often, and they don't talk about their personal feelings very often, and they rarely express their personal feelings to other men.  Because of that, I think men have a harder time obtaining resources to help them with depression - not that the resources aren't available - the man is just not going to bring himself to take advantage of them.
 
Women, on the other hand, do talk more about personal issues and they seem to have more empathy for someone in need than do men.  Women seem more likely to reach out whereas men seem more likely to withdraw - under the same set of circumstances.     
 
I will not, because of past experiences, tell any of my male friends I have depression.  I might "suggest" I have anxiety, but nothing more than that.  I have seen several counselors and therapists over the years and only one time was it a man - and it was only one visit - I never went back to see him again.  I just did not feel comfortable talking about the issues to him, and there was something that told me I would never be fully open and honest with him.
 
I feel, for me, this "man" thing is a detriment to recovery, and I'm not sure how I can overcome it.  That I am writing here is a plus, that I am seeing a therapist is a plus, but I will never have a personal support group behind me, and I can see I have pretty much battled this problem in the past - alone - and I fully expect I will be battling it in the future - alone.
 
I have great empathy for those going through depression because I know its pain.  I feel good about being able to support others who write here.  But why is it I don't feel good about reaching out for myself?  If I was told there was a depression support group that met in my town every week, I really doubt I would go there.  There probably is a group, and you know, I won't even look it up to see if there is because I know I would not go there.  Is that messed up - or what . . .
 
Scythia
 
 

Trying to Understand
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Date Joined Sep 2010
Total Posts : 776
   Posted 10/11/2010 8:41 PM (GMT -6)   
Just happened to read about this in one of my email newsletters. Maybe I can retrieve it from the email trash later, but will try to re-trace my footsteps.

It was Psych central, Bipolar somethingBlog by Tom Wooten, then a writing by a guy named Will something, he also has a blog WillSpirit. It was an interesting poem, "The Heart's Harlots". f Didn't have a chance to read alot on WillSpirit, but along the right margin there were a lot of interesting things I'd like to check out. He has a unique point of view in that he had a horrendous childhood, somehow made it thru med school etc, and was a surgeon. That fell thru when he got some kind of disease/problem that effected his neck so he could no longer do surgery. Seems to have quite a time with moods.

Do know that men have a difficult time when their source of employment goes south. Men like to talk about the job when they see each other. Its a great loss not to be able to join in with your own situation at work. Whether illness, layoff, retirement, it seems not to matter what the reason.

Later, gotta go now.

Sandy
BP II
Severe depression

Taygeta
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 164
   Posted 10/11/2010 9:37 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks, Sandy.
 
Yep, men do like to talk about work, and with my employment going south, doesn't predispose me to striking up conversatiions with other guys.  Then add in the surgery I had for two degenerative cervical discs a couple years ago.  Though the nerve pains have been eliminated, I have neck pains almost daily from the spot where surgery was performed.  Working with computers aggravates the condition as does sitting in chairs that don't have neck and back support, like bleacher seats.  My therapist was quite concerned when she found out about the number of motrin I take daily.  So was my doctor's office when I told them.  Seeing them tomorrow about going to a pain clinic.
 
Some days I just don't know.  My situation seems so complicated, I can't see any end to it.

theHTreturns...
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Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 20282
   Posted 10/11/2010 11:31 PM (GMT -6)   
all the best with ya appt. me too pain, and i have the dr. tomorrow as well.

hang in there. here for you. i am a bloke who talks.................and yes in therapy as well.

sometimes you can't shut me up!!!! lol. :-)
YESTERDAY IS A BUTTERLY WITHOUT WINGS. (ME)
 
DX, MDD, SEVERE BORDERLINE PERSONALITY DISORDER.
 
REMEMBER TO LOVE YOU. BE YOU AND BE TRUE.

Taygeta
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 164
   Posted 10/11/2010 11:45 PM (GMT -6)   
Hey Jaimee,
 
Appreciate your support!!!   Good luck with your appt. as well.  That's a strange thing about me - normally not that talkative, but there are times when I can't be shut up either, and therapy, well, that seems to be one of them.
 
Thanks, friend.
 
 

theHTreturns...
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Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 20282
   Posted 10/12/2010 2:20 AM (GMT -6)   
cool   cool cool cool cool cool cool cool jamie.

Trying to Understand
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2010
Total Posts : 776
   Posted 10/12/2010 2:59 AM (GMT -6)   
Oh, Scythia, and a neck problem as well ! Sounds like the WillSong authors story. Were you able to find that? Still haven't checked my trash for more info.

Lots of Motrin are strongly discouraged, as they can have serious side effects, physical that you don't need. What did they suggest?

Good that you can let it all out in therapy.

Trying to Understand
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2010
Total Posts : 776
   Posted 10/12/2010 5:31 AM (GMT -6)   
Found the one article I was looking for
Male Depression: An Interview with Peter V. Rabins, M.D.
Friday October 8, 2010

Read more: http://blog.beliefnet.com/beyondblue/2010/10/male-depression-an-interview-w.html#ixzz128h5tBj1

Taygeta
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 164
   Posted 10/12/2010 8:25 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Sandy,
 
Thanks for finding the link.  Yeah - mean are defined by their jobs, and yeah, when that goes away, it really does affect them - that's me to a T.  Cannot even begin to describe the "uselessness" feelings that have haunted me and continue to do so. 
 
Going to see the doc today to hopefully get a referral to the pain clinic.  Have talked about some med options with my therapist, but she really wants me to get into the pain clinic to see what they recommend, since that's their area of expertise.  I've been on long-term pain/inflammation meds before though, but unfortunately, the ones I was prescribed were either inneffective or had some lousy side-effects, so all of those eventually got flushed.  She claims it is a top-notch clinic, and they will do their best to find something that works for me, so I'm hopeful with that.
 
The reason I use motrin is motrin is extremely effective at relieving pain for me, but I am aware of the possible long-term consequences.  Now I've got my regular physician worried about what I've done to my liver.  Like I need that problem too.  I'm really getting tired of one day just being a repeat of the one before.  I'd like to feel hopeful, and for longer than just a few days at a time (which is about the best I ever get).  For me right now, waking up every morning is normally the worst moment of every day.
     

Trying to Understand
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2010
Total Posts : 776
   Posted 10/12/2010 8:48 AM (GMT -6)   
Your pain issue sounds terrible. I hope the pain clinic turns out to be all you hope/need.
Took my son to one once for something minor compared to yours. Had a spinal tap in the ER, and then they proceeded to do a scan, sitting him up and moving him all over the place. So if he wasn't sick enough, now wasn't able to tolerate light, visual problems, severe headache, that went on for days. Pain clinic called us early Mon am, in response to my last call, they had been trying to call us all weekend, but at his house, as that was what was in the chart. ARGHHHHHH Flew right over and they fixed it in a jiffy. A miracle Very nice staff
Liver damage usually shows up in the blood work, did you have any? Think that all NSAIDs have the potential of sudden and severe bleeding, internally. Not to be messed with
Good luck today
Sandy
BP II
Severe depression

Taygeta
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 164
   Posted 10/12/2010 9:18 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Sandy,
 
I am guessing they will want to do bloodwork today.  NSAIDS do have those issues.
 
Crazy story about your son - glad it turned out for the best.  Did he have a spinal fluid leak?  A friend of mine once had one after a spinal tap - lasted a week - had severe migraines and couldn't tolerate light.
 
Will let you know what they say today.
 
Thanks.
 
Scythia

Trying to Understand
Veteran Member


Date Joined Sep 2010
Total Posts : 776
   Posted 10/12/2010 10:21 AM (GMT -6)   
Yes, it was a spinal fluid leak, and they drew blood from him, and injected it into the spine to make a new "scab". Really crazy. Worked right away, well, same day anyway.
Will be watching for your post.

Geosojda
Regular Member


Date Joined Aug 2010
Total Posts : 262
   Posted 10/12/2010 12:23 PM (GMT -6)   
i truly hope you find a good solution for your pain!

Back on the men and depression thing, i am a 29 year old man going through my first bout with depression and i have similar feelings toward being able to open up to other men. One of the main reasons i went to the therapist i am currently seeing is that its a woman, i know i wouldn't be as open emotionally if i was seeing a man. Growing up in my family i think set the tone for this, my mother was always the emotionally supportive one while dad was the usual "rock" never showed too much emotion, was always supportive but not emotionally. I think as men we are taught to hide our emotional side for fear that if you show it you are "weak". I know i hide it as much as i can, no one i work with knows i suffer or even my family, i just can't bring myself to tell them, the only one i have to open up to on a regular basis is my wife, who i feel extremely blessed can deal with me :). i'm not sure how to break out of this stigma, i think its just engrained in us.

Taygeta
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 164
   Posted 10/12/2010 12:45 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks, Geosojda!  I'll know more where that path is heading in just a couple hours after I pay the dr. a call.
 
Same for me on the therapist as you- I know I can open up to her - and I have.
 
Same thing with my dad as yours. 
 
I have to completely agree with you - it is so engrained in men to not show emotion because it is a sign of weakness.
 
Let me know if the movie/video game thing helps you.  I certainly hope it does!  My therapist had been telling me that I needed to set aside time to stop thinking - turn the brain into "taking in" only with no analyzing.  Don't even remember when it happened, but I made the movie-mind connection and have been using it ever since.

Taygeta
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 164
   Posted 10/12/2010 4:02 PM (GMT -6)   
Hi Sandy,
 
Doc's visit done.  Bloodwork ordered as I expected to check for liver and kidney issues.
 
He had no problem referring me to the pain clinic, so now things rest with them on calling me to make an appointment.  Docs office has to fax over the referral and medical records, so will see what we will see.  Will let you know when they get in touch with me.
 
Yep - told me I needed to limit my motrin to 9 a day at most and to make sure I eat every time I take it - which I told him I often didn't do - and that made him cringe.
 
Scythia
 
 

theHTreturns...
Elite Member


Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 20282
   Posted 10/12/2010 5:56 PM (GMT -6)   
glad you got into the pain clinic. yes food with pills!!!! keep positive. jamie.

going to cancel, not flash this morning. anxiety-diarreoah. jamie.
YESTERDAY IS A BUTTERLY WITHOUT WINGS. (ME)
 
DX, MDD, SEVERE BORDERLINE PERSONALITY DISORDER.
 
REMEMBER TO LOVE YOU. BE YOU AND BE TRUE.

Taygeta
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 164
   Posted 10/12/2010 10:47 PM (GMT -6)   
Thanks, jamie,
 
I should know better than to be taking the motrin without food.  Let me entertain you with the gist of our conversation on that.
 
The doctor "That's quite a lot of motrin.  I recommend you limit it to no more than nine a day.  And you should be taking them with food.  You have been taking them with food, right?"
 
Me "No.  A lot of time I take them on an empty stomach.  First thing in the morning, I'll take three of them . . ."
 
He looked aghast when I told him that. 
 
The doctor.  "Don't do that anymore.  They're not good for the stomach.  Have they given you problems?  Have you had any stomach pains?"
 
Me "No, actually, I haven't.  In fact, motrin doesn't seem to bother my stomach at all, and it seems to knock the pain out pretty well.  Now if I take just one aspirin, that will kill me."
 
He shook his head slowly, and I could tell he was in thought.  I could also tell he didn't like what he was hearing from me.  "I'll refer you to the pain clinic, but we also need to run a blood test, check on your liver and kidneys.  Let me write those scripts up for you."
 
 
(I know, I'm an idiot.  Motrin had become such a common thing for me, I didn't even think of the long-term consequences.  I can honestly say I've taken it on a regular basis for nearly two years now.  Now I'm going to worry that I've done something irreversible.  Stupid, stupid, stupid . . .) 

theHTreturns...
Elite Member


Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 20282
   Posted 10/13/2010 2:37 AM (GMT -6)   
crossing my fingers that all is well for you. so, you have learn't a valueable lesson!!

keep positive. here for you, jamie.
YESTERDAY IS A BUTTERLY WITHOUT WINGS. (ME)
 
DX, MDD, SEVERE BORDERLINE PERSONALITY DISORDER.
 
REMEMBER TO LOVE YOU. BE YOU AND BE TRUE.

stkitt
Elite Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 10/13/2010 7:20 PM (GMT -6)   
Scythia,
 
I am so glad you have found the members here to be so kind and caring.  I know the topic here goes back and forth but I just wanted to share my thoughts and experiences in dealing with men and mental health issues.
Sadness isn't macho ! Male depression seems to go unrecognized because unlike female depression it doesn't  fit the textbook signs. Men will often  complain about problems at work or their performance on the job. Instead of being weepy, men are more apt to be irritable and angry -- moods that aren't included in the classic diagnostic tests. Their sadness and helplessness are hidden behind a mask of anger.
 
If they feel bad, they're apt to get into fights on the job or at home, withdraw from family and friends, become obsessed with work or hobbies. Most significantly, men often turn to drinking or drugs. Even my husband has an extremely hard time dealing with my  depression.
 
I posted this back awhile ago when I was feeling down as my hubby was frustrated and telling me to just "get over it" ~ "get a grip" and I felt so alone. 

Depression is not something anyone would choose but unless you have experienced it you could not truly know what it feels like. Those of us with depression do not want to feel the way we do and we do work hard at fighting this mentahealth disorder. If you're depressed, you'll know exactly what it feels like, but putting it into words is rarely easy. If you're the friend, relation or colleague of a depressed person, it can be very hard to understand exactly what's happening. To sum it up in one word, depression is Hell.

Imagine going through day-to-day life, with nothing apparently wrong, but feeling as though every one of your closest relatives has suddenly died, leaving you totally alone. The experience often gets better in the late evening, but returns, just as strong, the following day. Quotes from depressed people compare the experience to;

      a slow crawl through Hell

      being a leaf in a strong wind

      being trapped inside my own head

      watching a film of my life

      going through a dark grey shadow of life

      looking over the suicide cliff

      seeing the world through a plate of dark glass

      being a kite in a hurricane - I daren't let go of the string

Please don't toss us aside because we can be difficult to live with. We truly want to be happy and at times we are very happy. If you think we don't love you because we have depression you could be very wrong.

My feelings at the time and at many times in the past ______________  smhair

Hope that back pain get under control and wondering if you have ever had a TENS unit for the pain ?

Kindly,

Kitt

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My kids would ask, 'What's wrong with Daddy? Why's he so mad all the time?' I probably heard that 1,000 times.

~~Kitt~~
Moderator: Anxiety/Panic, Osteoarthritis, GERD/Heartburn and Heart/Cardiovascular Disease.
www.healingwell.com

"If you can't change the world, change your world"

Taygeta
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 164
   Posted 10/15/2010 11:00 AM (GMT -6)   

Hi Kitt,

 

Thanks for responding.  What you say is so true.  My therapist told me this week that men actually have as much depression as women - so that goes against what we hear.  She says clinical studies are showing there are as many depressed men as women, but the reason it seems like there are more women, is exactly what you say here.  Men don't often seek help, and men show it in different ways.

 

Thanks for the list.  I can relate.

 

I wrote a short story over 20 years ago.  As I look back at it now, there were major elements of depression in the plot itself.

 

That I think about it now, perhaps I was describing my own depression in the story.

 

This says it all for me as to what depression is, and it comes right from the story:

 

Being on the edge of existence.

 

Scythia

 

 


stkitt
Elite Member


Date Joined Apr 2007
Total Posts : 32602
   Posted 10/15/2010 11:33 AM (GMT -6)   

Being on the edge of existence.  How true that statement is. 

 

"Depression to me is like being lost in the forrest. It is dark, cold, lonely, scary and menacing. The fog that settles over it in the dark is smothering as a wet wool blanket. The edge of night is as close as your hand but yet as far away as the farthest star, and then it breaks. Peace settles overhead for a while and gives us a break but then we stumble back into the depth again and quickly and easily lose our way."

Actually I love my life and would not trade who I am as my experiences are unique to me, depression and all.   

On a lighter noter:

I went to a bookstore and asked the saleswoman, “Where’s the self-help section?” She said if she told me, it would defeat the purpose.

Thanks, Scythia,  you are so very kind and wise.

Kitt

 

 


~~Kitt~~
Moderator: Anxiety/Panic, Osteoarthritis, GERD/Heartburn and Heart/Cardiovascular Disease.
www.healingwell.com

"If you can't change the world, change your world"

Taygeta
Regular Member


Date Joined Oct 2010
Total Posts : 164
   Posted 10/16/2010 11:58 AM (GMT -6)   
Hi Kitt,
 
Your description of depression really hits home.  I know I have felt that way before, lost in a forest.  Some days just about everything I think of seems menacing.
 
I've asked myself that question - would I want to be someone else - and I come up with the same answer as you.  My depression issues also make me who I am.  I don't believe I would be the caring teacher that I am if I didn't have depression. 
 
Did that really happen at the bookstore?  rofl  What a great response!  lol  I love it when people do that.  tongue tongue tongue tongue tongue tongue tongue tongue tongue tongue tongue turn turn turn turn turn turn turn turn tongue tongue yeah
 
If I'm very kind and wise (thank you for that compliment), then you are
very, very, very kind and very, very, very wise . . . . . . . . . . x 10
 
Scythia

theHTreturns...
Elite Member


Date Joined Mar 2009
Total Posts : 20282
   Posted 10/18/2010 2:59 AM (GMT -6)   
LUV IT!!!!!!!!!! THAT darn BOOKSTORE!!!! JAMIE. :-)
YESTERDAY IS A BUTTERLY WITHOUT WINGS. (ME)
 
DX, MDD, SEVERE BORDERLINE PERSONALITY DISORDER.
 
REMEMBER TO LOVE YOU. BE YOU AND BE TRUE.
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