Category Archives: DA Literature

This group gave me my voice back.

There were times when I wanted to talk to someone about what was happening in my life –but I didn’t even have a name for whatever it was that had me totally immobilized. What could I tell my friends–that I felt I was losing my mind. Some mysterious cancer of the brain maybe? I was definitely scared. The more stuff that I read about the symptoms the more confused I became. Whatever it was I knew that I needed help. Go to a doctor? Talk to a counselor? I felt so alienated, from my self, family and friends. I had hit the wall.

Like others with whom I later became became acquainted, it gradually came to me that I must be depressed. I had most of the symptoms: I lost my appetite, I felt shame that I was unable to help myself. I did manage to hold down a job, but my main thing after work was to go home and sleep it off. I lost my ability to concentrate, plus my memory seemed to be on the blink. I didn’t answer my phone, skipped business appointments and just rather not be in touch with anyone and everyone. Most of all I was very angry about something that clearly made my life miserable, hopeless and out of my control. I couldn’t get out of bed in the morning–why, because my life was now without goals, purpose and meaning. My own isolation from everything that I once valued and dear to me was gone. In a sense I had lost my voice to ask for help.

I got a phone call one day –a work buddy asked me to attend a meeting with him. ” I asked What kind of meeting?” He just said something to get you moving again. I agreed, but only for his sake did I agree to go with him. By this time I realized that I was depressed –I knew what I had –or what had me. And if you are presently attending Depressed Anonymous meetings you know what I am talking about.

Not til after a few more meetings did I feel comfortable in this group. But it was only after more meetings was I willing to share my own story. You know, the before (how it was before recovery) and the after (how it is now that I am in recovery, have my own sponsor and go regularly to meetings). I felt I had to speak. I needed to get it out in the open. I told my story how I was a veritable wreck during my struggle and inner battles with depression. And then how I came to this fellowship and became a new person. The key that unlocked my prison was this group of men and women just like myself –and a God of my own understanding who I know loved me and was with me all the time.

With my voice back and no longer all alone I am using it now to encourage others who come to our meetings — to keep coming back and using the tools that we freely offer them. They will be another voice added to the many who are today sharing their hope, strength and experiences. If you are brand new they will be wanting to tell you about it!!

A Depressed Anonymous Member.

“Do not ask what the world needs.”

“Do not ask for what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive, and do it. For what the world needs is people who are fully alive.”
Howard Thurman

This thought got me thinking. I have asked myself the very question many times over. I always had an answer to the question. For many years, the same answer continued to take me down the same path. It was a gentle path. It was like going to work in the morning. You know, getting on the bus, or driving the car to the same place every day. There it was the same faces, the same tasks. After a days work it was back home again. End of story.
It was a good life. I felt alive doing what needed to be done. And yes, I think I was fully alive. But then at a certain point(I can still feel it) life started to spin out of control. If you have had this experience you definitely know what I am talking about.

Long story short. My life was falling apart. I started isolating from friends and family. All I needed was to get away from the world and try figuring out what ws happening to me. I did not need a world that looked so gray, forbidding and threatening.
I only wanted to live in a world of which I could control. Now, I was moving slowly in a world that gave me no promise of direction. I was a walking zombie.

Then gradually, a light went on in my dull and darkened spirit. I discovered a new and exciting path. It was a new world for me. I was no longer alone. It was my gradual awakening to a new reality. I was no longer alone. I was part of others who are on the same journey. It was a journey of hope. I had a direction. It is called recovery.
My depression was gone. The fog had lifted. I came alive with the help of the group. It is better called a fellowship.I am needed. My experiences of recovering from depression is needed. I am called to give hope. My life’s ultimate concern, my purpose is to walk with others just like myself–once wounded –now wounded healers. I am fully alive.

I believe that the world truly needs me–needs you. What once made me think I was worthless and useless, now I am alive. Depressed Anonymous helped me come alive. Now I have no doubt what makes me fully alive. It’s those others, just like me at a time in my own life, who said, we need you. We need you to help others become fully alive. Now we know what the world needs.

With a gratitude that I am alive.

Hugh, for the fellowship

SOUL SPIRIT HEART

What do those words mean for you.
Holy Joe words I always thought
Not anymore, I believe
Through listening a lot

Years and years, it takes you to see
To put those words in order for me
Holy Joe words, they can indeed be
But today, mostly those words mean emotions for mE.

For years I saw weakness where emotions should be
Don’t show emotions they are not useful to me
I believed others tormented more when I let my guard down.
Emotions hide those it’s easier to frown
Much better be competent by the book whilst going around

I thought I was here only for tasks
Keep going on story stuck
So, on my life towards solitude went
Find another quest on which my life’s time to be spent.

Quest after quest, blow after blow
The emotions were there but now trodden below
My life revolved around rushing to go
Never ever learning how to really say no

I can’t trust my brain
When it comes to what’s best
Who would believe that that could be so?
Instead of my brain helping, it can stop me to grow.
++++++++++++++

Moore, M. Member of the International Online Skype Depressed Anonymous Fellowship.
With permission

Do you have a daily strategy for living? Kobe Bryant used the Chess board for his basketball prowess.

I was surprised to learn that the former LA Laker’s (NBA) great was a chess player. I wondered why that would be and then, being a chess player myself, I figured it out. Chess players become strategists by learning the best moves with their chess pieces to “check mate” and close down their opponent. Think about it. If you happen to be a chess player, you know all about strategy, or how a lack of strategy can give the game to your adversary. In chess, our pieces move according to moves predicated on the moves of one’s opponent. Sometimes one has to plan moves ahead to see what measures have to be taken to out maneuver the other player. Chess players have to have a strategy.

Two weeks ago, my grandson and I had a game, we had not played in a few years, and he always beat me in a few moves. (I always opened my game with wrong pieces). This time I opened with a new move and he was surprised. He had thought that he could beat his Papa in a few moves. Problem here is that I learned a new strategy and he was not prepared for my new strategy. Even so he won the game. I was still happy with myself that I put up some good moves myself and lasted longer in the competition.

In my duel with depression I gradually learned a strategy for my own life. I learned to to DO something. My first strategic move was to move my body and found that my mind would follow. Once I moved my body my motivation was strengthened and my thinking became more focused.

My own strategy was strengthened by using the 12 spiritual principles of our Depressed Anonymous program. At the core was my ultimate belief that I was going to recover, come hell or high water. An essential part of my strategy for regaining my life was to get out of bed in the morning and force myself. Move, call a friend. Go to a DA meeting.

For me, my best strategic move that check-mated my opponent, that is the isolation of depression, with its mistaken belief that there was no hope, was to join our fellowship, Depressed Anonymous. Because of the pandemic we have a daily SKYPE program online: Depressed Anonymous, a journey of hope. We are a group of people, who have found a strategy that works in so many great ways. It is to be with good people who are depressed and who now are able to work their way out of depression. We are not alone. We have a program of hope and we have each other. We remain anonymous (only first names are used if desired) and everyone has a chance to speak their mind. No one will tell you to “snap out of it” or “it’s just in your head.”

Another strategy is to read our literature – filled with strategies for any of us, on how to gain freedom from our isolating symptoms of depression –

Here is our strategy. Please click onto the website here at www.depresedanon.com. Go to Depressed Anonymous Homepage. There on the menu – last line, you will find menu references to our BLOGS, HOME and a MEETINGS MENU item that tells you where to find our meetings and how to get there. Please click onto the link at this pace and that will take you to our daily Depressed Anonymous meeting: A journey of hope. Here you can join our Online SKYPE group. Join.Skype.COM. Meetings are daily at 11:30 AM CST and 12:30PM EST. Please know that 10 minutes before the meeting starts you will get a green message button on your screen indicating “Join call.”
Click onto that and you are into the meeting.

Welcome. You will have used a strategy that will give you hope and a host of friends. Don’t let depression “check-mate” you.

Hugh, for the for the fellowship

I need to get prepared for a new me today!

I am getting healthier the more I realize that I don’t have to feel the way that I feel. I have the option to feel content and even smile today if I so desire. I will act like I want to smile again even though I don’t feel like smiling.

“If you have made yourself a martyr to your unappreciative family, remember the principle of partial reinforcement and apply it to your family. If you are always at their beck and call trying to meet their every demand, they will not appreciate you, but once they see that they cannot rely on you to to meet their demands, they will appreciate what you do for them.” (Breaking the Bonds, D. Rowe.Fontana, 1991).

REFLECTION
i Know that so often those who are codependent and live all the time in everyone else’s feelings need to remember that the real maturity and happiness lies in being there for me — not for everyone else. I think that reflection points out the fact that I need to reinforce my own worth by going to DA meetings, actively getting involved with my own recovery over anything and everyone else. I am going to begin to be a pleasant person. I will want to learn how to be pleasant to myself.
Now is the time and this is the program where I start to detach from other people’s opinion of myself and start to reflect where I start to detach from those people’s opinions of myself and start to reflect on my own opinion of myself. When I am depressed, I know that I haven’t been able to get angry, not to forgive anyone, much less forgive myself. I feel cheerless. I meet my own demands and continue to work the steps so as to get in touch with what I need to do to reinforce those positive concepts that I am forming about myself. I need to get prepared for a new me today.
“We are now on a different basis: the basis of trusting and relying upon God, our Higher Power. We trust an infinite God rather than our finite selves. Just to the extent that we do as we think he would have us do, and humbly rely on him, does he enable us to match calamity with serenity.” (As Bill sees it.p.265).

MEDITATION
When we gradually work our way to the real self we get closer to the God who made us.

RESOURCE
Copyright(c) Higher Thoughts for Down Days: 365 daily thoughts and meditations for 12 step fellowship groups. Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville, KY. Hugh Smith. Pages 14-15.

A light at the end of the tunnel

Now that I have admitted that I am powerless over my depression and that I don’t do myself any good blaming myself with those daily reminders of how bad and unacceptable I am. I now an conscious.

  1. CONSCIOUSNESS. I am conscious of my need to discover what there is about myself that I do not find acceptable, good and wholesome.
  2. PREPARATION. I am aware how I have depressed myself by the faulty beliefs that I have held about myself over past years. I now know that part of the way I feel is due to the way I automatically talk to myself through out the day. I now realize that my feelings about myself are very negative and emotion laden.
  3. ACTION. i intend today to replace all negative statements that I make about myself, like waving a red flag before my eyes every time I call myself “stupid” or put myself down mentally. I will use affirmations such as the following: ‘I will build a new life for myself. I am strong today. I have the courage to go through the experience. I will no longer blame myself or others for my depression. I do not have to wait for someone to make me feel better, as I can do this myself if I choose to do so.’
  4. SUSTAIN. I am very hopeful that I can feel better just for today. I am going to tolerate my imperfections while at the same time refusing to feel sorry for myself. I am going to make myself accountable for how I feel, not blame it on someone or others.

RESOURCES
Copyright(C) Believing is seeing: 15 Ways to leave the prison of depression. Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. KY. Pages 54-55.
Copyright(C) Higher Thoughts for down days: 365 daily thoughts and meditations for members of Twelve Step fellowship groups. Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville, KY 40241.
Copyright (C) The Depressed Anonymous Workbook.(2002). Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. KY.
Copyright (C) Depressed Anonymous, THIRD EDITION. (2011). DAP. Louisville, KY 40241.
Copyright(C) I’ll do it when I feel better. (2013) SECOND EDITION. DAP. Louisville, KY. 40241.

NOTE
These publications can be ordered online at www.depressedanon.com. These books can be purchased together or individually. The DA Workbook and the DA Manual, THIRD EDITION, are available as Ebooks and are downloadable. If you order with the intent of setting up a Depressed Anonymous support group, having all five publications will be a source of support library for the fellowship.

Depressed? Looking for a stable and secure environment?

Depressed and feeling alone? This is what many of us have felt when a combination of the many symptoms of depression shackled us physically and put our mind in park.

Some of us felt that there must be a way out of the pain of depression, but as yet were unable to find what might help us. But this feeling changed once I came into the fellowship of Depressed Anonymous, our 12 Step program of recovery. When I was asked if I would like to share with others my own path of recovery I heartily agreed. Here is my story.

I am sharing my story here to give others a chance to read what happens when we land in this circle of friendship with its healing acceptance and support.
After ten years of repeated meetings with the depressed of Depressed Anonymous meetings, it’s clear that that the meetings create a secure base for those who in their childhood had neither kindness nor the life giving warmth and affection of a loving family.
People who keep coming back to Depressed Anonymous continue to grow and become aware of the inner change taking place, week after week, as they find not only attention to their story, but find that they are loved and and cared for at the same time. Possibly for the first time they find that they look forward to each weekly meeting and become attached to the positive feelings that emerge inside themselves as they continue to share the story of their pain. In time they share how their week is suddenly being filled with more good days than bad. It also becomes obvious to the participant that childhood behavior and experiences are carried right on into adult life. Trusting is such a hazard for the depressed, because every person is different. You can’t trust your environment because it could suddenly shift and you would be without a certainty that you were bad and worthless. The meetings gradually present to you an opportunity to be someone worthwhile and valued. Your sharing and risking information about yourself begins the construction of a new and secure you. The DA group becomes for the first time in your life a very secure and stable environment where you can share, trust and grow.
–Anonymous

Copyright(c) Depressed Anonymous, THIRD EDITION. Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville, KY. Page 162-163. (Personal stories: #25. Depressed Anonymous provides a secure (love and acceptance) base for those who never experienced love nor support growing up.


To read more stories of inspiration (Depressed Anonymous, THIRD EDITION. Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. KY. Please click onto the Depressed Anonymous Publications Bookstore at www.depressedanon.com. Literature can be ordered online. Ebooks are also available.