I need emotional relief...please help me

  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jan 12, 2009 5:03 AM GMT
    I don;t usually do something like this, but I'm just so discouraged right now, I need to write something and know things are going to get better somehow...

    Life has been so hard emotionally, and I'm just tired of disappointment and emotional stress. In the past 5 years, I had to deal with being gay in catholic high school, watch my father die of cancer, fight suicidal tendencies in college over coming to terms with being gay, deal with horribly homophobic people in college, and dealing with emotionally abusive relationships.

    I thought things would get better when college was done. But the thing is I haven't been able to find any type of employment since getting fired from a job as a waiter, and I'm feeling like the biggest loser right now. I feel like I've been trying so hard for so long, but that I just can't seem to catch a break. I had to move back home because of the finances and I've been so down because of it. My bf says things will get better, and I want to believe that, but I just don't anymore. All I want to do is run back to all the drugs I used to use in college right now.

    I don't want to seem like a whiny little bitch, but I haven't been this discouraged in a long time. Is there any words of advice any of you might have for me?

    Thanks,

    --Mike
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    Jan 12, 2009 5:38 AM GMT
    It does get better. Trust me... Life is full of ups and downs, sometimes the downs are a lot worse. But you have a great bf trust what he says.
    talking always helps. Any time you need a lift just ask. Maybe a smile or a cuddle from your bf will make it seems better. Your not a loser.. People are stressing about losing their job everyday right now. I have friends that freaking over it. The good thing is the sun will shine again.
    Just hang in their. Help out at a shelter or a gay help line help others and you will feel much better.

    icon_smile.gif
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    Jan 12, 2009 7:20 AM GMT
    View life with the understanding that it's cyclical and everything can change, quite literally, in seconds. E.g., you could get a job, win the lottery, etc.

    We all deal with ups and downs. The trick is viewing the challenge as one that you'll rise to and eventually will change.

    Understand, being negative won't gain you much.

    You need to come up with a plan to change things, execute it as best and you can and hope for the best. If you aren't successful the first time, change the plan, and go at it again.

    Almost all situations are temporary.

    Push the depression aside, stay active, eat well, and understand that very few things in life don't change given some time.

    Channel positive energy in the direction of changing your situation, even when the goal seems improbable.

    Set bite-size goals, a day at a time.

    Things WILL change.

    YOU can choose to be miserable, or not.
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    Jan 12, 2009 7:46 AM GMT
    Get around real people and volunteer. Good god, an old folks home would love to have you come through and read the newspaper to some of the shut-ins.

    It doesn't pay bills, but it gets you out around people who need you.

    I promise you, lots of ideas will pop into your head while you're there. Wouldn't kill you to read the employment section, BTW, while you're there.

    Do not steal any food or pills while you're there. I know you're thinking it.

    Maybe you're not.
  • EricLA

    Posts: 3461

    Jan 12, 2009 8:03 AM GMT
    Thel, Mickey makes a good suggestion. You need to get out of your own head. I fight depression pretty regularly, too. RIght now I've hit a good patch, but that can always change, but it helps that for the first time in my life I've been in therapy regularly. So, it helps to navigate the down times.

    There will always be times in your life where you will be ripped away by the current. Circumstances out of your control. You just have to deal with those as best as you can. Do NOT take them personally. I'm so sorry about your father. I'm sure that's not easy. I'm sure it blows big time. But I'm sure your father would not want you to end your life early because of his death.

    As for Catholic School, you just have to shake off what you were exposed to there. Doesn't sound like you were exposed to very Christian teachings there, just narrow-minded religious conservatism. Look at it for what it is -- hypocrisy! And much the same about what you experienced in college. That says more about them than it does you!!! Why let that get to you? Put more value in the good people in your life, and less value in the bastards. There will always be people trying to sabotage your happiness. Pity them.

    As for suicidal thoughts, I'd really strongly suggest you find a professional to talk you though times likes these. That's what made me start going to therapy -- strong suicidal thoughts that sort of came out of nowhere. We don't always have the tools necessary to beat down those thoughts. Let's face it, we're not objective when we're in those moods, so please consider this when you're NOT in one of those moods. I can't suggest this stongly enough. Get therapy for this.

    But you just have to keep moving forward. As said above, this does get easier. And you will have more say about the people in your life, so you'll be less surrounded by the idiots.

    You're obviously a really great guy. You will find a way out of this. Trust us.


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    Jan 12, 2009 1:23 PM GMT
    First stop complaining. NO one likes a whiner. Whining about life is the quickest way to run friend, and boyfriends away. So first go to the bathroom. Look at yourself and smile.

    Next YOU have the power to change. Most forget that you are the most powerful allie you can have. Get back out there and find a job. There is something out there, even if at a fast food joint. It is an income and a job where you can be productive once again.

    You have a lot to be thankful for if you look around. I'm sure the winter months have not helped much being stuck inside, however now is the time for you to make change.

    Last, try reading a book on self help. I recommend for you one that is good abotu lifes changes called "Who moved my cheese".
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    Jan 12, 2009 1:50 PM GMT
    Hey Mike!

    Hang in there! It is a bad recession. Don't feel left out. There are unfortunately many people who were made unemployed by the greedy banks. I've heard horrible stories from friends and businesses about the downturn in the economy. I feel so helpless as I can't do anything yet, but if you can hang on for a while, things can only improve. What doesn't kill you, makes you stronger! One day, you may be callled upon to help others in a similar situation as yourself and you'd be glad you had this experience so you'd know how to help. However, in order to do this, you'd have to survive this rough patch for a while.

    You'd have to look at the bright side of life. There are sometimes too many negatives to focus on which leads to depression. Maybe having a roof over your head, living with your family is not such a bad thing afterall, compared to being on the street, homeless with no family? You have two good hands and legs? Can you hear? See? Spare a thought for those who aren't that fortunate. Sometimes, there is a lot to be cheerful about with what we already have right now. Ask yourself, can you help someone else in a less fortunate situation as you? If you can, you're still useful ;-) If you don't know how to, let me know. I have a few suggestions ;-)
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    Jan 12, 2009 2:12 PM GMT
    Rich0008 said It Help out at a shelter or a gay help line help others and you will feel much better.



    Doing volunteer work is a great idea. It would get you out of the house and give you a positive attitude. Plus it's another line on the resume and gives you something to say when job interviewers ask "What are you doing now."
    Best of all, most jobs aren't advertised, they'll filled by networking, so your chances of finding a job are greater if you're out there.

    Catholic school isn't so bad. I went to Catholic grade school and from the viewpoint of later life I think it helped with issues of structure and self-discipline. Good luck.
  • CuriousJockAZ

    Posts: 19129

    Jan 12, 2009 2:13 PM GMT
    Welcome to life. If you don't like it, just remember there's always tomorrow and with a new day brings not only new challenges but new opportunities. Perhaps taking a few moments to focus on those who have so much less than you have, and who would probably switch places with YOU in a heartbeat, will help you to stop feeling sorry for yourself and count your blessings. That all being said, whatever you do, do NOT head back to the drugs. Drugs never takes you anywhere good and, in fact, may even be at the root of the pickle you find your life in today. Set some small goals for yourself, formulate a game plan how to achieve them, and just take it one day at a time. If you can achieve a little something each day towards those goals, then you're moving forward toward changing your life, and away from the mistakes and pitfalls of the past. Stay positive and you will attract positive things and positive people.

  • coolarmydude

    Posts: 9190

    Jan 12, 2009 2:37 PM GMT
    Don't wait to catch a break. Make a break. It all begins with a realistic plan and implementing that plan. I think you need to be more persevering in your efforts. Consider your difficult time as your personal life test. Everyone has one and it is defined by what they can handle and not what they can't handle. Be creative. Surround yourself around good people. Accept personal sacrifices in order to achieve your ultimate goals.
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    Jan 12, 2009 2:56 PM GMT
    It is hard to get started in the working world. They only want to hire experience but how are you gonna get experience if they dont hire you.

    I thought you were going to school full time this semester. Maybe that is not a good idea. Psychologically, you might be in need of a job....to start pulling in some cash so you can see that you are capable of earning something. I know you can get a job at a bookstore or a "Home Depot" type store at a drop of a hat....they are always hiring. A "Home Depot" type store might not be a bad idea....you might need to know something about building exhibits when you get into your field....not that you would do the building....but at least you would know about building materials. But who knows maybe designing exhibits will be your entry to your field and you will get that job by the knowledge you gain working at a home supply place.

    I remember when I got out of graduate school, I couldnt get a job in my field. I had to take a job in the computer field. ...and then I had to take the second shift...2:30 PM to 11 PM*....hey it's called paying your dues. The only advantage to second shift is that I got paid extra for the evening. So that was good.

    So I guess I would suggest broadening your job search and take some kind of job. Your ego needs the success of a paycheck.


    *That was back in the early '80s and is one of the three reasons I credit with not getting AIDS back then.
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    Jan 12, 2009 3:06 PM GMT
    Thanks for all the replies. It means a lot to me. I know eventually I'll be ok. I've been working on my issues a lot in the past year, but I'm just feeling really discouraged. But there are lots of people who are worse off than I am. I ended up talking about it to my mom yesterday and she's trying to help me. She said that had she known what was going on when I was younger, she would have pulled me out of the Catholic school. A little too late, but it was a nice gesture. I'm going to keep working on looking at the positives in life. I think that's important.

    Thanks for all the nice words.
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    Jan 12, 2009 3:39 PM GMT
    Have any of you others had a hard time getting traction when you first were out of school? What did you have to do to get started?
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    Jan 12, 2009 3:47 PM GMT
    You're doing the right thing by reaching out. One of the big mistakes people make when they are struggling is to think they are the only ones going through it. When you talk to others, you will find out many people struggle with similar things.

    If it helps, I'll tell you a little bit of my story (and I really apologize for the length).

    I've struggled on and off with depression and anxiety my entire life and it runs in my family. However, I've had many more good days then I have had bad days.

    I found a good anti-depressant and anti-anxiety medication that worked pretty well for me (I had to do a lot of public speaking and started having panic attacks several years ago, which then spread over into social situations). I had a wonderful therapist who helped me overcome quite a few difficulties and also gave me the courage to move to NYC. Sadly, he suffered a major heart attack and died shortly after I moved here.

    Things were good for the first six months here, but then I got laid off on July 1, 2008. I had an idea it was coming, but I was assured that they were looking for a different position for me and it wouldn't be likely. However, I found out during a conference call staff meeting that it was my last staff meeting and that I'd be leaving at the end of June.

    I lost my health insurance and had to quit taking the medication, which caused withdrawal. The medication was over $180 per month and COBRA would cost almost $500 a month.

    So.....I was depressed, anxious, and unemployed. There were times when I'd have panic attacks on the subway and I avoided most social situations.

    At the same time, I decided it was not going to get the better of me.

    I couldn't afford my gym membership, so I froze it and went jogging about six days a week. I also started walking all over New York and began taking pictures as a hobby.

    Things started to look up, and then my boyfriend had to go into the hospital for an emergency appendectomy. At the same time, we found out my dad had a large malignant tumor in his stomach that needed to be removed. After taking care of my boyfriend for a couple of weeks (during and after surgery), I flew home for a month to help my family. My mom has a low thyroid, which causes her to be tired and depressed and it would have been too much for her. My dad was scared to spend the first night alone in the hospital and really needed me there.

    Being at the hospital and around sick people made me feel even more depressed and anxious. There were days I didn't want to get out of bed and I thought I would lose it if I spent any more time at the hospital...but there were too many people counting on me. I got a cheap anti-depressant from the doctor, which gave me a massive headache for two weeks till I quit taking it (and after a trip to urgent care). I slept very little and was exhausted every day.

    During this time, I also had to be around the person who sexually abused me as a child. I hadn't been around this person for years and I was really nervous the day I had to see him - I almost threw up in fact. (I was also physically and emotionally abused in childhood - which led to abusive relationships as an adult).

    On Christmas day, my mom and I went to Blockbuster and rented movies. I had never seen Schindler's List and decided to watch it that night. I haven't cried that hard at a movie in a long time....but it put everything in perspective for me.

    The next day, I got on the world's smallest plane (it seated 19 and had no bathroom), flew to my layover, and flew back to NYC with a renewed commitment to make things better.

    I had a wonderful after-Christmas with my boyfriend and one of the best New Year's Eve ever.

    I had been doing part-time work from home and got another contract that will allow me to go off of unemployment. I just met with another person to possibly do some paid grant-writing for a theater company. I got asked to be on a board of directors and had my first meeting, which was very rewarding.

    On Saturday, I entered three of my photographs in an art show here in New York with my boyfriend and his best friend (I'll find out Friday if I was accepted).

    I took my gym membership off of freeze and have been working out six days a week, and really enjoying my workouts. I've also been sleeping a lot better, too. I'm working to improve my eating habits and to shed a few pounds.

    I've been doing more things with more people, and I won't let myself avoid social situations. I just deal with it.

    I think the thing that helped me the most is that I didn't give myself an "out" when I wanted to avoid something difficult. I faced it and each time I faced it I realized I was stronger than I thought. I also put my difficulties in perspective and found they weren't as bad as I was making them out to be. One thing I told my boyfriend is that I wish I had enjoyed my unemployed more (it was the first time I'd been laid off and the longest I was involuntarily unemployed).

    One of the things I've heard from people in recovery is the saying, "Fake it till you make it." I started using that philosophy and pushing myself to do stuff I wouldn't normally do...and I found I was happier and more confident when I did these things. I don't think people had any idea I was panicking on the inside and was fighting urges to bolt out of the room. The more I faked it, the more real it became.

    So, take it for what it's worth. Many people are struggling these days and there's nothing wrong with it. My happy times are so much better because of the difficult times I've had. I don't think I take anything for granted anymore. Life, for me, is truly gift.

    Wow....I can't believe I just shared all of that!
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    Jan 12, 2009 3:58 PM GMT
    Quite simply, no pain no gain! Which means life is about to get better! However YOU have to put some MAJOR effort in making sure that happens! Start with surrounding yourself with GREAT people, DO NOT settle for anything less than what you define as great! Make sure you also change your venues, where you hang-out, where you go and stuff. And with those, life will begin to make a shift, however it will not happen if you don't put forth energy in doing so!

    Thank you for sharing, it can be a struggle/a challenge, yet it WILL get better, TRUST me!!!

    Hang in there, we're ALL here for you!!!
  • Sayrnas

    Posts: 847

    Jan 12, 2009 4:39 PM GMT
    yeah, what they said...
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    Jan 12, 2009 4:51 PM GMT
    chuckystud saidView life with the understanding that it's cyclical and everything can change, quite literally, in seconds. E.g., you could get a job, win the lottery, etc.

    We all deal with ups and downs. The trick is viewing the challenge as one that you'll rise to and eventually will change.

    Understand, being negative won't gain you much.

    You need to come up with a plan to change things, execute it as best and you can and hope for the best. If you aren't successful the first time, change the plan, and go at it again.

    Almost all situations are temporary.

    Push the depression aside, stay active, eat well, and understand that very few things in life don't change given some time.

    Channel positive energy in the direction of changing your situation, even when the goal seems improbable.

    Set bite-size goals, a day at a time.

    Things WILL change.

    YOU can choose to be miserable, or not.
    Wow...I'm with Chucky on this one, nicely put! Understand that you can do what YOU want and then take the high road. They're all just little hills in the road of life that seem high when you're jogging up them but you'll get to the top and you'll find that once you start down, they really do get smaller and smaller as you move away from them towards your goal!
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    Jan 12, 2009 5:28 PM GMT
    ...and remember there are always those in worse situations....

    funny pictures of cats with captions
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    Jan 12, 2009 10:32 PM GMT
    I'd like to add the value of perspective.

    flex89 lives with me, and is a type-1, insulin-dependent, diabetic. Logan does daily battle with blood sugar management swings, and the challenges that all puts into his life (e.g. not being able to get caught in traffic in a car; not being able to eat comfort foods, etc., wanting to workout and not being able to.). In the eight months that Logan has been shoulder to shoulder with me, he's only been negative on three occasions. I asked him, "Logan, how do you deal with being sick so much?" Logan's response, without a moment's hesitation was "beats chemotherapy!"

    Perhaps you'll want to consider how very fortunate you truly are, even in your current situation.

    One thing that helps me to gain perspective is to ride the city bus. On the city bus there are some major fucked up folks. After the ride, I feel my life is o.k.

    The wonderful thing about the past is that it's in the past. Your high school is O-V-E-R. It's in the past, as are many things. Let them rest.

    The wonderful thing about the future is that it holds promise. Live for the future.

    In the case of flex89, they might well find a cure in his lifetime. You just never know. In the meantime, he does the very best he can and lives for the good things. You should, too.
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    Jan 13, 2009 12:20 AM GMT
    Thanks for all your kind words people. I am feeling a lot better today. Filled out a lot of federal job applications today. I've been doing a lot better in the past 6 months at looking at the good in my life, it's just I hit a big roadblock this week. But you a said some really nice things. I wish I actually knew you people in real life.

    Thanks again,

    --Mike
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    Jan 13, 2009 12:57 AM GMT
    TheIStrat saidI wish I actually knew you people in real life.
    Well Mike, we may not be there to give you a hug but we are real and you do know us and we do care, otherwise we wouldn't bother to respond! Good luck my friend. Don
  • qalbi30

    Posts: 116

    Jan 13, 2009 7:26 AM GMT
    Wish you well Mike,remember its now 2009 a brand New Year.

    Leave all past hurts and problems there,in the past,when you wake up in the morning think to yourself I am going to make this day full of joy for everybody that I come into contact with.

    Joy and happiness are contagious and it will be returned to you in full measure .
    Am sending you A BIG HUG !

    R.
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    Jan 17, 2009 9:19 PM GMT
    Hey Mike,

    I know what you've gone through is difficult--and I'm really sorry about your dad. But as so many of the others have said--things do get better. They really do. Keep going and don't DON'T fall back into drugs. Or alcohol. That only makes things infinitely worse. Try to stay positive, look for opportunities -- they're all over the place-- and develop friendships with genuinely good people (I know, sometimes they're hard to find).

    Count the good things in your life. You're young, very good looking and you even have a bf. I know living at home has to be a drag, but it's only temporary and just consider it a safe harbor until things get better. You may also consider counseling, which is a very healthy and positive thing to do. There are plenty of free or low-cost clinics that would love to help you.

    Hang in there and I hope today is a good day for you.
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    Jan 17, 2009 10:32 PM GMT
    Mike, your bros on RJ have got your back. Big hugz!icon_wink.gif
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    Jan 17, 2009 10:49 PM GMT
    I am with TV on this one ( and he is a great guy, BTW). Keep posting or venting and you will see support from this community. Will always be open to a phone call to let you know I care. IM me any time. Just need a phone # hoss! Your buddy on the big muddy. Donnyicon_wink.gif