+ Attribute the depression to a cause, e.g., loss of a loved one, loss of a childhood, loss of a pet, loss of a job.
+Attempt to rectify the problems considered responsible for evoking the feelings of depression.
+Finding moral and social support (Depressed Anonymous mutual aid group).
+Engaging in diverting and distracting recreations.
+ Keeping busy and working.
+ Focusing one’s attention elsewhere than on the depressing problems or depressed feelings.
+Restructuring one’s thinking so as to minimize the significance of the depressing events.
+Engaging in in self-care and self maintenance activities.
+Venting one’s feelings.
+Taking prescribed medication as long as you and your doctor agree that the medication is working on your behalf.
+Finding compensations and boosting feelings of self esteem or self sufficiency through useful purposeful activity.
+Taking comfort in one’s religion.
SOURCE: Wounded Healers. V. Rippere & W. Ruth. John WIley and Sons, Ltd, 1985. pgs. 86-87. (Reprinted and published in the ANTIDEPRESSANT TABLET.)
” As a person that has suffered depression since childhood, I can say that until you start to open up, share your hurts and feelings, listen to the members of the group, watch them as they grow from the support of the group, you will not be able to get out of the prison of your depression. I have been going to Depressed Anonymous for four years and only until recently have I realized that I was addicted to the self. Only then did I start to take a good look at myself and start to ask God for his help and truly mean it. I am learning to trust in God and do His will and not mine. I feel better about myself. I can tell you it is a lot easier to be depressed than it is to work on yourself and admit to yourself that there is a problem. It is God’s will for us to live each day to the fullest because of our time on earth is limited. Live each day, not yesterday or tomorrow. Share with the group and your friends and you will be surprised who will be glad to listen if you would give them a chance. Accept the fact that all of us at Depressed Anonymous are here to listen to you and not make judgments on you or give advice. Even if you don’t want to share, come to the meetings because you can always get something out of them. Eventually, you will want to share and the group will listen.
In conclusion, trust in your Higher Power – God as you understand God. Support groups are the way out of our addictions. We may have given up on God, but God hasn’t given up on us. Start your day out by asking God: God I pray for the knowledge of your will and the power to carry it out. ”
-Starr writing about her experience with depression and the healing support that she receives in the Depressed Anonymous 12 Step mutual aid group.
Read Starr’s whole story in Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition. Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. (Personal Stories section/Pages 129-130 ).
How true. I will always remember how I felt when I found myself unable to get up in the morning. I knew something was different and something was very wrong. I was scared. I did the only thing that I knew what to do–I got into “fight” mode and forced my unresponsive body to get into motion. For some strange reason I found myself in “survival mode.” I just knew that whatever had me pinned to the floor and motionless I had to do the next right thing. The next right thing was to get out of bed and start walking. I did just that. And from that “survival mode” experience I learned a very important lesson: motivation follows action. In a way I had a faint bit of trust that what I was about to do, would be a factor in my survival;.
As it says in the book I’ll do it when I feel better, that “Trust, always has been a critical element in one’s search for finding one’s true and best self. And with trust comes hope. Hope is the thread which weaves its way throughout the spiritual program of the Twelve Steps.”
“Depression is about lost selves – and the struggle to regain the self. We are in a perpetual lock down! it is indeed a battle with one’s will to survive –that is why Dorothy Rowe calls depression a prison. We build the walls as a defense to keep us safe until we can combat our demons and find which way out is the best.
Over time you and I both have discovered a truth: trust is never an easy proposition. Trust comes with a belief that all things will work out. But another problem is that so much of our lives negative and harmful life experiences have ben carried through life and so conditioned us to predict that no matter what we say or do we will always be living in the prison of despair.”
And finally I discovered the more I walked, the more bricks that had me imprisoned in despair and fear, I was able to remove.
It was then that I had the energy to pick up my Twelve Step “tool box” from the fellowship of Depressed Anonymous, and to this day continue my life of serenity and hope. Now, learning to be in a “trust mode” has given me freedom to live each new day with hope.
SOURCE: Copyright(c) I’LL DO IT WHEN I FEEL BETETR.(2015) DAP. LOUISVILLE. PAGES 75, 76-77.