“In our depression groups you can come and begin to get out some of those feelings accumulated over the years which have taken their toll on our lives by making us feel helpless and alone. Many women in our culture seemed to have imbibed a helpless feeling with their mother’s milk. As women become aware of their abilities and rights as human beings, they begin to experience the freedom that comes from being themselves and throwing aside rules and roles fashioned by men and male minds. Recovery is being able to trust ourselves in exploring ways to feel emotions.
In most cultures, when males begin to depress themselves, they “numb out” and stuff their feelings of shame, hurt, or anger. Males are conditioned to not express in any intimate fashion these unpleasant feelings. One of the positive aspects of our support group is that men can come to our fellowship, share their tears, and know that this is acceptable behavior for any member of the group. What most males really want to do but don’t know how, is to be intimate with others, sharing those deep feelings. From just an anecdotal account, normally at most Depressed Anonymous meetings there are as many men in attendance as there are women, even though the statistics tell us that women are more depressed than men. I too believe that accounting is based on cultural conditioning as well. Women have learned how to talk about feelings more than men. Depressed Anonymous is an excellent group for men to not only learn new skills in intimacy, but helps them outgrow old patterns of negative thinking and behavior.”
SOURCE: Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition. (1998, 2008, 2011) Depressed Anonymous Publications.Louisville. Ky. P. 82-83.
Halloween ( the word Halloween is from an earlier period of time and means hallowed eve. In the Christian Church all Saints were honored the day before–thus, the ” eve” part.) Nowadays, this night is filled with children (and adults) dressed up as various personages, animals and everything in between. All of them had their little baskets and hoping to get them filled with candy, cookies and assorted sweet treats. Judging from all who came to our door last night I would say the evening turned out to be a treat. No tricks!
When I was trying to navigate through the fog of my depression a number of years ago, there were no treats –no special happy moments–nada! The whole landscape of my life was filled with “emotional landmines” and the mind with its delusions and illusions tried to trick me into thinking I would always live in this pit of darkness. But as soon as I began to take responsibility for my feelings and my life, I found answers to my unending trapped feelings. The answers were not of the treat variety, but they gradually removed the bricks/tricks that formed the prison of my depression. No more was I forced to wear the false face of the smiling, happy-go lucky person. No more was I the people pleaser, subservient to all who were part of my daily struggle. No, I now filled my futile days with practical ways which I learned how to leave the sadness behind. I found the way out through the Twelve Steps of Depressed Anonymous, and my newly discovered support group. No more tricks. No more days begun in a fog and ending in a fog. I Came to believe that a Power greater than myself could restore me to sanity. I Made a decision to turn my will and my life over to the care of God, as I understood God to be.
Everyday I treat myself to doing God’s will and believing that something good will happen for me this day What’s it going to be for you today? Trick or treat?
Source: (C) Believing is seeing: 15 ways to leave the prison of depression. (2014) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville.
(c) Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition. (2011) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville.
DEP-ANON FAMILY GROUP
Support Group for family and friends of the depressed.
Scores of books have been written on the subject of depression. If you are like most of us, we have all run after and read the latest work on depression looking for clues to see just what is wrong with our loved ones and what it is that they face and struggle with.
DEP-ANON is a support group for family and friends of the depressed. This program is very much like AL-ANON where family members gather to help each other learn how to detach and cope with alcoholism. In the same way DEP-ANON is an effort of family and friends to gather together and learn how to live with and cope with their depressed loved one.
At a planning session for DEP-ANON, family members were asked to list all the feelings that they experience while living with a depressed loved one. From the discussion we were surprised to find out some amazing facts. 1) That the feelings family members were experiencing were very similar to those which their depressed loved ones were experiencing, and 2) these feelings were also having an equally destructive effect in the lives of family members. DEP-ANON FAMILY GROUP (1999) Depressed Anonymous Publications, Louisville, KY.USA.
More on this important subject tomorrow. Please let us know if this topic is of interest to you. We might be able to help you set up a Family Group in your locale or just use the material for your own guidance.