Seriously Depressed - Spritually Bankrupt

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    Feb 09, 2010 1:07 PM GMT
    Ok. I really hated to make an issue on RealJock about this. But honestly, I don't know where to go, or where to turn to. I am barely sleeping at night..and its almost entirely because of these issues. I guess I'm more depressed than I try to tell myself I am. I feel SO EMPTY. Its not even funny. I'm not talking about alone as in I feel like I'm lonely. Yes, I am very lonely. But its way worse than that. Its such a feeling that when I think about other things - things that people say they have turned to to try and fill their loneliness which have worked for them, friends, family, meaning; I just feel utterly hopeless...and even more empty. I feel like those things - are empty.

    When I am really depressed, I can feel like nothing will make any difference. When I am lying awake in bed at night my mind often drifts toward the negative (this is a bad habit I have been doing it for YEARS). But I think things like "Life isn't worth living" ..I run over thoughts in my head of experiences which validate how cruel people are, how rude, how short life is, how we all die of diseases, how bad things happen, how nothing makes a whole lot of sense etc.

    In short its just horrible! It's like having someone turn up the negative so its all that plays in your head. I also feel sort of like God has abandoned me. Or really, that God just doesn't exist. I just feel empty..and it feels horrible to me to feel that I am Godless and in a banal existance. and the worst part about it, I think, is not having any answers.

    I'm sorry, I know this is alot but I just really need help. I don't think I can go on like this. What's really bad, is that I used to derive a great sense of comfort from turning to God when I felt down...and when I try to now - all I get is just nothing, anymore. I feel like its all pointless. God its just awful.


    P.S. I have tossed around the idea of religious counseling - but stayed away due to the radicalism or whatever that I might encounter. I just really want consolation..and am getting more desperate to go see somebody. I really want to believe that there is some reason for life and that we have a purpose here.
  • Genuinely

    Posts: 3

    Feb 09, 2010 1:59 PM GMT
    I'm so sorry you're going through this. I know what it's like to battle with depression. I wish there was a magic sentence I could type that would make all the pain go away. If you ever want to chat or need someone to vent to, I'm here for you. You don't have to go through this alone.
  • Latenight30

    Posts: 1525

    Feb 09, 2010 2:51 PM GMT
    Have you looked outside and seen how great the world really is.
    It's a beautiful planet. Go out into the woods and get away from people for awhile. Get back to... the earth and see the beauty in the world.
    Yeah you could be standing next to a serial rapist in the grocery store or they could be spending 1 Saturday every month cooking breakfast for the homeless.
    While we are on that... what have you contributed back to the world to make it a better place? Go volunteer somewhere. Don't expect other people to make a difference it's something we all need to do and see if that doesn't make you think differently.
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    Feb 09, 2010 2:56 PM GMT
    If its any comfort your surrounded by about 300 million people who will never amount to anything memorable, never do anything beyond consume valuable resources, never think of much else besides sex-money-sex, and end up rotting in a yard somewhere until future generations decide we need the space.

    Lets even take that a step further. By simply living in the western world your continuing the rape of the lesser world. Almost everything you purchase has its roots in taking advantage of someone somewhere.

    The world sucks. Oh well. You can ignore it and move on or dwell and never get anywhere.
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    Feb 09, 2010 2:58 PM GMT
    You have taken the first step, you have addressed your feelings and asked for help, only then can you truley start to understand and accept it.

    It will be long and hard, but worth it. You will find friends here that will share there wealth of knowledge and experience with you, that you can learn to apply yourself.


    Take Heart my man, the world is full of balance, the good and the bad, you just need to retune your mine into seeing the good.

    My immediate suggestion for you, is to breathe, focus on just breathing for a while, relish in the life that flows in and out of your lungs. That is all.

    Further on from that, find people to talk to, either trained or not, who offer an ear and a non-judgemental view point.

    It will be all good my friend, watch the postive replies you get here.
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    Feb 09, 2010 3:03 PM GMT
    This is from a couple of Life Coaches I've read about

    1. Listen to your thoughts
    The first stage in the process of changing your focus from what’s missing to what’s there is to become aware of your thoughts. Are you wistfully mulling over what has passed, replaying scenes in your mind? How much of your daydreaming is dedicated to what has gone? How much time are you spending in the past? If it’s too much, and you’d like to do something about it, then try tip 2...

    2. Accept the past
    You cannot change what is done. All cultures express wisdom through proverbs. As we say in English, there is no point crying over spilt milk. You said those words, you bought that house, you didn’t buy those shares. Whatever it is you wish you’d done or hadn’t done, I invite you today to accept that what’s done is done. Be finished with it now; it’s over. You are where you are. Move on.

    3. Be kind to yourself
    It’s difficult to change if you’re starting from a place of self-loathing. Just as you need to accept the past, so you need to accept yourself. Be kind to yourself, recognising the times when you did what was right. Even if you don’t feel good about yourself, get into the habit of regularly telling yourself that you are such a person. It really works if you can learn to change the script about how you think about yourself.

    4. Be aware of what's going on around you
    When we’re turned in on ourselves, we become blind to what’s going on around us. You can quite easily reverse this process; by focusing on what’s going on around you, you will become less preoccupied with yourself. Notice the way the trees change through the seasons. Look at the sky and see how it changes from minute to minute. See if you can spot the moon.

    5. Count your blessings
    I start the day by counting my blessings. It helps me to get into the right frame of mind. Even if your life is miserable, there must be some things you’re grateful for. Notice these, and say thanks for them, no matter how trivial they are. Whether or not you believe in a god, the process of offering thanks is almost magical in its power to transform the way we feel. Try it, and see what happens.

    And remember how little at the bottom of the glass is the amount of gin in that gin and tonic; but, boy, without it, what a disappointing cocktail it would be!

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    Feb 09, 2010 3:03 PM GMT
    Oh man, I really feel for you. It sounds like you've completely lost perspective. You need to find professional help. No comforting words you read on RJ are going to help you much. You need to find books on depression, they give you professional insight into what's going on with you. And you need a pro to discuss this with, possibly even to get some medication to help balance you out a bit. This might be absolutely clinical, and you need to find out.
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    Feb 09, 2010 3:09 PM GMT
    ATC84 said...The world sucks. Oh well. If its really that bad there is always the option to end things yourself.

    I don't think this is the advice the OP needs, or for anyone who says they're "seriously depressed."

    But having bouts of depression is quite common for gay men, though whether this particular depression is gay related the OP hasn't told us. Nevertheless, I'd suspect it's involved, since he mentions loneliness and spiritual issues, 2 of the banes of gay men in our society.

    I think an important message is that this depression is not rare, that in some ways it's like a cold that gay men get. And like when you have a cold you're in misery and think it'll never end, but of course it eventually does. And I'd tell myself that this depression will end, maybe not as quickly as a cold passes, but it will end, and I'll be happy again.

    Ways to jump start that happiness include socializing, arranging for a change of scenery, getting involved in outside projects & activities. Ways NOT to go include obsessive behavior like over-eating, drinking, smoking, drugs, or shopping sprees.

    And if it's spirituality our OP lacks, then become active in the nearest Metropolitan Community Church (MCC), where you can worship & serve a God with a gay-friendly face. And socialize with lots of other gay men, ending the loneliness, too.
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    Feb 09, 2010 3:11 PM GMT
    At any moment, something could toggle the switch that changes your mind about everything.
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    Feb 09, 2010 3:14 PM GMT
    I concur with DJ, that you should seek professional help. Depression may be an emotional and or a chemical problem, but it IS addressable. Life is worth living, your life and its impact on others is important, and even if God is not responding, he still loves you.

    Enjoy the day, get some exercise, and be thankful for the beautiful snow.
  • Ironman4U

    Posts: 738

    Feb 09, 2010 3:16 PM GMT
    Just for today...focus on your blessings. The fact that guys on here are responding to you is a blessing. I'm sure there are many others if you really focus on what is good. Peace be with you.
  • CuriousJockAZ

    Posts: 19119

    Feb 09, 2010 3:27 PM GMT
    McGay saidAt any moment, something could toggle the switch that changes your mind about everything.


    This is so true! If I had a dime every time I was feeling sort of blue and wondered "Why in the hell am I here in this world". We all go through those moments of self doubt, and feeling hopeless, or just questioning everything we do. It's called growing. Hang in there guy because, as McGay said, nothing ever stays the same for very long and just when you think you want to throw in the towel something comes along that takes you in a whole new direction. Life is an adventure. Live it and you'll see that for yourself.
  • curve

    Posts: 668

    Feb 09, 2010 3:27 PM GMT

    i find that when i am down and dark, being in nature helps em become more ground and clears my head...
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    Feb 09, 2010 3:33 PM GMT
    Your About Me section simply says:

    "Sometimes I just feel like I wanna let loose.... go buckwild in this quiet old town. "

    Doing that or something like that will go a long way in toggling your mindset. Don't feel bad about not liking your current station in life. Use it to change stations. Move out of Virginia, it's doing you no good. Go someplace where you can let loose. Something visceral inside you is probably telling you to do that and you're conflicted. Going buckwild can be embarrassing or it can be very liberating. I'm thinking liberating in your case.
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    Feb 09, 2010 3:35 PM GMT
    Sylas,

    I'm very sorry that you feel so bereft. It certainly sounds like - in addition to navigating a religious/existential crisis - you may be suffering from depression. Please have a look at this website from the US National Institute of Mental Health.

    http://nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/depression/what-are-the-signs-and-symptoms-of-depression.shtml

    If you believe may be suffering from clinical depression, please arrange to see a doctor as soon as you can. Depression is very treatable. And left untreated depression not only makes you feel awful, it can lead to a bunch of serious health issues and it hugely increases the risk of suicidality.

    If you find that your "Life isn't worth living" thoughts morph into thinking of ways to kill yourself, or worse, you find yourself actively considering where, when and/or how you will kill yourself, please call 911 or go to your nearest emergency room. Right now it may seem very hard for you to believe this, but you will eventually feel better and re-discover a sense of purpose and joy. In fact, the pain you are experiencing now may eventually move you in directions that will prove valuable in the future. The bottom line is that suicide is a permanent solution to a temporary problem.

    Whether or not you are in the midst of clinical depression, there are a number of steps you can take to help shorten the duration of you misery and probably lessen its intensity as well:

    -Make sure you are eating properly. If your appetite is suppressed, try eating several small, healthy meals a day or even resort to smoothies, etc if you have to.

    -Try to get at least 20-30 minutes of moderate aerobic exercise every day - preferably outdoors in daylight.

    -(This one may be a challenge for you.) Try to develop a regular pattern of sleep. Go to bed at the same every night and get up after seven to nine hours of sleep. If you are sleepless during the night, get out of bed and do something that may help distract you from your thoughts. To the extent that you can avoid day time naps and, if you have to nap, keep them to 20 to 30 minutes.

    -Keep doing things that usually enjoy doing - even if you are not able to enjoy them now. Low mood and depression has the nasty effect of lessening or eliminating altogether the pleasure people feel from their usual activities, hobbies, social activities, etc. If you keep engaged in things you have enjoyed historically, there is a very good chance that you will sooner rather than later find that you enjoy them again. A phrase to keep in mind is that sometimes 'Action must precede motivation'. You may not feel like doing much, but if you give into that feeling, you are unlikely to do anything and so feel even worse.

    Finally, try to stay as socially engaged as you can - with friends, family, and people on RJ.

    Please let us know how you're going.

    All the best

    David
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    Feb 09, 2010 3:38 PM GMT
    You are suffering from the classic signs of depression. When you are like that it affects the way you see thing .. everything looks bad. Furthermore, you can even feel guilty like you did something to deserve it. Being lonely has nothing to do with being spiritually bankrupt. It has to do with endorphins, chemistry, and perhaps bad patterns of thinking we get stuck in.

    You need to change the way you see things. That might mean talking to a mental health professional and not necessarily a spiritual one.

    I think you should try visible friends not invisible ones. You seem to have a problem relating to others and feeling connection with them. A healthy mind will see connections everywhere and possibility. That is what you need to work on. Ultimately you need do things that give you energy and that engage your mind in activity .. the happiness will come naturally at that point.
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    Feb 09, 2010 3:50 PM GMT
    I agree with the very likely possibility that you are clinically depressed. Particularly if you haven't suffered from a recent catastrophic personal loss. You need to see a Dr. right away! The Dr. will be able to make an appropriate and dispassionate assessment of it and make suitable recommendations for treatment.

    Clinical depression cannot be fixed by merely talking about it or 'having a better attitude' as those approaches are based on ignorance of the condition. They are no better than being diagnosed with type 1 diabetes and saying that you can deal with it through willpower and a positive attitude. It's not only wrong, its dangerous.



  • ATLANTIS7

    Posts: 1213

    Feb 09, 2010 3:51 PM GMT
    Real sorry to hear of your depression l remember when l was near your age and l went thro' a bout of this but not as bad as you sound! Take a look at what you have and then look at what some folk do not have?

    Get outdoors and in the nature and breath the air that the Planet breaths and are you sure you don't have a real buddy to talk to?

    Don't go down the religious road or a shrink or even a Dr but if it persists maybe a check up will not hurt!

    A hug!
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    Feb 09, 2010 4:13 PM GMT
    I feel you! But you're young and able bodied and the world needs you more than you can see right now. I have an amazing career, an adoring boyfriend, supportive friends, a loyal family -- just about everything a body could ask for really. And I've often felt the same way.

    But then I was introduced to two great quotes... one after the other... and they helped change my perspective. The first was from Margaret Mead - "Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has." The other was from Ghandi. "Be the change you want to see in the world."

    There is so much in this world that is designed to make you feel powerless, isolated, and incomplete. I think it's always been this way, but in modern life, it's a constant barrage. And it's way too effective...

    My advice to you is to get outside yourself and find a place where you can be that change... there are so many people that could use your help. And when you see your ability to change lives, you'll begin to understand that you are an important part of the big plan...



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    Feb 09, 2010 4:19 PM GMT
    Any man that can claim to have never felt this or been through this, is either in denial or a truly fortunate individual. I think it's very fair to say that we've all felt this, as popular opinion seems to reflect it happens even more to gay men.

    I agree with the comment that good things can come out of the blue and offer a brand new perspective on "life". However, it's also a downward spiral that causes us to sabotage our own happiness sometimes. It's one of those ruts that hurt more than just about anything, yet we feed it by dwelling and wallowing.

    You have indeed taken a step by bringing it to light in a "public arena" where you just might find that single piece of advice or hope you've been missing.

    Actually, I think it was a good choice to put it out there on this forum. Aside from a lot of whining, and religious/political wildfires, there are some truly great (and I do mean great) guys on here. I'm very fortunate to have connected with one such person. He has done so much to restore my faith in quite a few things...especially men.

    Don't be afraid to reach out further. It's hard, but not impossible.

    Good luck
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    Feb 09, 2010 4:46 PM GMT
    Sylas saidOk. I really hated to make an issue on RealJock about this. But honestly, I don't know where to go, or where to turn to. I am barely sleeping at night..and its almost entirely because of these issues. I guess I'm more depressed than I try to tell myself I am. I feel SO EMPTY. Its not even funny. I'm not talking about alone as in I feel like I'm lonely. Yes, I am very lonely. But its way worse than that. Its such a feeling that when I think about other things - things that people say they have turned to to try and fill their loneliness which have worked for them, friends, family, meaning; I just feel utterly hopeless...and even more empty. I feel like those things - are empty.

    When I am really depressed, I can feel like nothing will make any difference. When I am lying awake in bed at night my mind often drifts toward the negative (this is a bad habit I have been doing it for YEARS). But I think things like "Life isn't worth living" ..I run over thoughts in my head of experiences which validate how cruel people are, how rude, how short life is, how we all die of diseases, how bad things happen, how nothing makes a whole lot of sense etc.

    In short its just horrible! It's like having someone turn up the negative so its all that plays in your head. I also feel sort of like God has abandoned me. Or really, that God just doesn't exist. I just feel empty..and it feels horrible to me to feel that I am Godless and in a banal existance. and the worst part about it, I think, is not having any answers.

    I'm sorry, I know this is alot but I just really need help. I don't think I can go on like this. What's really bad, is that I used to derive a great sense of comfort from turning to God when I felt down...and when I try to now - all I get is just nothing, anymore. I feel like its all pointless. God its just awful.


    P.S. I have tossed around the idea of religious counseling - but stayed away due to the radicalism or whatever that I might encounter. I just really want consolation..and am getting more desperate to go see somebody. I really want to believe that there is some reason for life and that we have a purpose here.


    Religion isn't the answer nor is anything man made.

    The only answer is found in Jesus Christ. Commit your life to him and you will be amazed at the difference.
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    Feb 09, 2010 4:53 PM GMT
    I've been down the same road though it comes in phases now. I'm kind of snapping out of a 2 month long bout with that beast, and it's not easy. But I know what I have to do. I think you just simply have to start looking at your options some people here are saying "don't do this, don't do that." I'm sorry, but I think the word "don't" in front of any possibly constructive action just makes for an extremely bad suggestion even with the best intentions behind it. Sometimes people oversimplify things, others overcomplicate things...there has to be some sort of a balance.

    A number of things help, but there's really no one thing except taking everything you can get and putting it into action. All the knowledge in the world is not useful unless you can apply it. Consolation and "it'll be ok" is going to be a quick momentary fix. Whether things are actually ok or not is your choice and it can be ok...great even...but it's going to come by way of your actions. It's not going to happen over night, and you might run into setbacks. If something doesn't work it's so easy to have the wind taken out of our sails when we're depressed. However, if you're out on a sail boat in the middle of the sea, and the thing stops moving, you still have to find a way to get it to shore. Right?

    I had a great therapist who taught me some cognitive structuring and different cognitive behavioral techniques. Your average therapist is no longer the absentminded profesor type with a clipboard, a leather couch, a blank stare, and a mechanical nod. Other than that for me there's nothing like a good hard run, followed by some yoga it's an amazing psychological purge because my demons can't cling on when I'm taking care of myself. They lose too much power because when I do those things, that's my "me" time, and I have little to no regard for anyone else, what they're doing, or what they think. If you deal with this problem now and get the tools in place, you'll have many years of happiness to come.

    That's what I hope for you at least...it's what I'd hope for anyone.
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    Feb 09, 2010 5:45 PM GMT
    You will begin to feel much better when you drop the power you're giving to this god of yours, and begin to take control of your own destiny.

    Religious counseling will only send you into a tailspin. The last thing you need is a religious zealot directing you. Nine times out of ten, they'll try to convince you that you're depressed because of your homosexuality. I've no doubt that your sexuality is playing a role here. Remember that it has absolutely nothing to do with some god accepting you, but everything to do with you learning to accept yourself.
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    Feb 09, 2010 5:50 PM GMT
    Understand, false belief systems / cults, get whatever power in your life that you give them. They are, after all, false, and a creation of your mind, with no basis in truth. Once you take the power of your life back, and move towards what are truths in life, you'll almost certainly find yourself happier.

    Depression can be resultant of lots of various causes, some of which involve endocrinology, others perspective, and others lack of exercise, and some just mental outlook. You'll probably want to see a qualified medical professional and have a CBC, T3/T4, testosterone test done, and with fasting glucose. Sometimes, a fix is just $4.00 a month pill, but, often, it's more involved than that and involves changes in lifestyles, and perceptions.

    Remember, the false belief systems ONLY have power over you if you create it. It's in YOUR MIND. Those false belief systems are whatever you make them. Don't make them your nemesis. They aren't real, and, they don't have power over you. They are a product of your imagination.

    Do NOT seek out more of the dog that bit you on this problem. You need to move, through, above, and beyond, the false belief systems and to a more suitable place with reality based belief systems that won't have you feeling so badly. The LAST THING you need right now is a brainwashed follower advising you. AVOID THAT AT ALL COSTS.
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    Feb 09, 2010 5:53 PM GMT
    Depression is god's way of telling you to step away from the altar, come out of and burn down the confessional, get the hell up off your knees, and that every single religious figure you know is a false prophet.