I found a way out of my prison of depression and so are the many others who are using the “tools” of recovery. And what are the “tools” of recovery but the 12 Steps of Depressed Anonymous. And how did I discover these great “tools?” I found them because I was feeling hopeless and completely out of control. My life was unmanageable. I was on a spiraling downspin. I was trapped. I was trapped until I discovered a group of people back in 1982 who said, “hey, we can help.” That group was the fellowship of Alcoholics Anonymous. And yes, they DID help. So it wasn’t long after that that we founded our own group to help the depressed. Yep, we call it Depressed Anonymous. Now, let’s fast forward. Today there are groups around the globe. We are not many in total numbers, but we are where those who need us are doing all they can to form groups.
Yesterday I got a message from a person from Belarus (formerly of the Soviet Union) who told me that she was interested in getting a group started in her country where she is a member of another 12 step program. Because her country is adjacent to the Ukraine, and finding groups in Ukraine listed on our website www.depressedanon.com she was able to get a published Russian translation of our Depressed Anonymous manual and Workbook. With these books she will begin working with others who speak Russian as they form a Depressed Anonymous Fellowship.
Step Twelve of Depressed Anonymous reminds us that “Having a spiritual awakening as the result of these Steps, we tried to carry this message to the depressed, and to practice these principles in all of our affairs.”
About the potentially life threatening experience of depression we have learned much from those who have recovered and now continue in the recovery program living out their lives based on the powerful spiritual principles of the 12 steps.
In our Big Book we read about a very important issue which affects all of us who have been depressed, who are in recovery and symptom free, and who want to continue feeling better–everyday. One day at a time. It’s possible.
” We all know that any addiction and compulsive type of behavior gradually removes you from the regular activities of persons around you, including family, friends and co-workers until you are established in the narrow confines of pain and isolation. We are always going to be just a little more isolated the more we try to think our addiction through in the circle of our own thoughts. Most of us need the fellowship of the group to keep ourselves honest and in recovery and our dark thoughts out in the open.” DA, Pages 105-106.
And that’s the power of the group –you are NEVER ALONE. There is always someone who is there for you. All of us are advised to have a sponsor so that when a need does arise someone is there to help get you through the rough times. I have a sponsor and I have not been depressed since 1985. And how have I been able to stay sane and sober all these years. First, by living one day at a time, walking almost everyday, talking with my sponsor once a week if possible, reading DA literature, and helping people who phone or email (firstname.lastname@example.org) me for help. I also write a BLOG at www.derpessedaon,com. almost everyday.
HOME STUDY KIT
Many persons who ask for help cannot find a group in their locality and so we have developed a Depressed Anonymous Workbook that is coordinated by page reference and Step # with our Big Book. I have helped many who have no face to face group in their community and who now use the Home Study Kit to help begin their own program at home and so have a good idea about depression, their own unique experience, and are provided with a way out with HOPE. Many times a person who uses the Home Study shares their answers with another person in the family, a therapist or through emails or SKYPE or many other assorted ways that they can connect with that person (s) who also want to learn how to live without depression. For a fact I know that even though you are not part of a local group you are always a part of the fellowship worldwide. Anytime you want to share your thoughts and work you can contact anyone of us online, via email, SKYPE or telephone. Don’t stay isolated. Get connected today! It will be life changing.
All the best to you!
SOURCES: Depressed Anonymous, 3rd edition. (2011) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. Ky.
Depressed Anonymous Workbook (2002) Depressed Anonymous Publications. Louisville. Ky.
IMPORTANT: THESE TWO WORKS COMPRISE THE HOME STUDY KIT AND CAN BE ORDERED TOGETHER.
VISIT THE STORE ON PLACING AN ORDER FOR YOUR OWN HOME STUDY KIT! GET YOUR NEW YEAR STARTED OFF ON THE RIGHT STEP!