Remarkable things happen when we are willing to admit defeat and talk about our powerlessness over our depression and how our lives had become unmanageable. This first step is the beginning of the flight of steps that takes us up and into our new way of living. At our fellowship of Depressed Anonymous we talk hope, we are hopeful, and we think hope. We learn that our thinking depressed and negative thoughts might have gotten us in the shape that we are in today. What you think is what you become. For us who find sadness our second nature, we at times continue to revert to the comfort of our old familiar negative thinking and are in actuality returning to self-destructive activity. Hope is overcome by sadness.
When we become convinced that a Power greater than ourselves could restore us to sanity, we found ourselves turning many times during a twenty-four period to that power. It is a rock in a rocky sea that we all hold onto when we find it easier just to give up and sadden ourselves instead of facing the storm and living through the fear. What Bill W., said about the alcoholic applies equally to the saddict: “He/she can settle for mediocrity and self-satisfaction even though this may indeed prove to be a precarious perch. Or he/she can choose to go on growing in greatness of spirit and truth.”
You never stop using and following the Steps. We are in recovery all our lives. You don’t graduate. When we return to saddening ourselves, we return to the old compulsion that can again reduce us to that bankrupt individual who is bereft of peace and hope. We want to grow in the conviction that the Higher Power will restore us to sanity. One of the best ways to grow out of our saddiction is to start acting the healer instead of being the passive victim. We are under the care of no one except our God.”
SOURCE: Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition. Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. KY. Page 107.
I knew that the Twelve Steps had a power. I now had a plan. A plan, like a map, showing me a way out of my aloneness and misery. Not only was I not alone, but now I was part of a fellowship of persons – just like myself.
At the root of my addiction was depression. It was then that I not only appreciated my particular recovery program but I felt that what I needed, more than anything now, was a Twelve Step program to deal with my depression and isolation from family and friends. At the time, 1982, there wasn’t a program specifically 12 Step that dealt with depression.
What we felt that was needed was a group program specifically oriented to depression. We knew one’s compulsions and addictions had at some level a sadness, those depression symptoms rendering lives unmanageable and out of control.
By the Spring of 1985 we had developed a program of recovery, specifically using the Twelve Steps as means for recovery from that life threatening scourge of depression. There were some of us who knew that we needed to have a Twelve Step program, developed by those of us who were depressed. In May of 1985, we held our first Depressed Anonymous meeting in Evansville, Indiana.
Our Big Book, Depressed Anonymous (May 1998) was written and created by those of us who were depressed. (An earlier edition titled DEPRESSED? HERE IS A WAY OUT! was published in 1990) . Ever since that time, persons depressed could read literature written by persons just like themselves. The Twelve Steps are a perfect solution – focused recovery program that fits the needs of the depressed.