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    Midwest USA
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    Honesty, Humility, Not Being Materialistic, Thinking For Myself, Accomplishment, Philosophy, Eccentricities, Psychology, Deep Conversations, Simple Pleasures, People of Character, Books, Movies, Music, Documentaries, Art, Painting, Drawing, History, Astronomy, Writing, Photography, Science, Long Walks, Thunderstorms, Skies, Sunsets, Mother Nature, Human Nature, Gardening, Horticulture, Cooking, Volunteer Work, Growing From Mistakes, Learning New Things, Being Goofy, The Feel of Laughter

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  1. Cookies, even if you've done something wrong or bad, my heart still goes out to you. ... We all make mistakes, and sometimes big ones. It almost sounds as if you're in a PTSD-like loop. Do you have a doctor or therapist to discuss this with? If not, it would be wise to have help in processing through this and figuring out the best course of action.
  2. You're not useless, rhyl. You're in pain and sharing your experiences. And you have a right to be frustrated. This kind of misdiagnosis happens, and far too often. It happened to me too. Even after being hospitalized for physical health issues several times, with test after test. It took years later for me to diagnose myself while I happened upon research. (It was confirmed through proper focused diagnostics)... It didn't end there, however. I have to continually research medications, treatments, doctors, etc. - because even doctors that claim to be specialists sometimes don't know anything. It's maddening. I'm truly sorry to hear you've been in so much discomfort. Anyone would find this difficult to live through, rhyl. You're brave & made of tough stuff, even if it (understandably) doesn't feel like it at the moment. Wishing you strength today.
  3. Great thread. It can be a bit of chicken and egg as well. I voted yes - and add that my career has also affected my depression. I mean I was depressed and had demons in the closet already. Ten years in a (miserable, unpurposeful) corporate job hasn't boosted my outlook. And I've done my level best to be tough as nails and wear armor, but the lies and back-stabs haven't done my self-esteem or faith in humanity any favors. I also enjoyed the comment about a parallel universe & have wondered and said similar things; that there's a different version of me that was possible. I know I'm better than this and can/should do better for myself emotionally, professionally, financially, etc. Feeling limitations sucks. Seeing 'alternate potential' hurts; and is a wake up call to action in fighting to find a way to change - or at least that's how I interpret it for myself.
  4. Deep conversations, people of character, volunteer work Art, painting, drawing, writing, photography, nature walks Growing from mistakes, learning new things Being goofy, the feel of laughter
  5. @MixedNut To discuss: Money won't buy happiness per se. That's true. There are plenty of rich celebrities who are unhappy, overdose on drugs, etc, ad nauseam... But the other side of the coin (pun intended) is it depends how one is viewing and spending money. Money can be a tool to do things and live freely as one chooses. If I had the money to live independently, that would assist me and my sanity tremendously. We also have forum members here on the brink of being homeless due to lack of money as a resource to care for themselves and their basic needs. I think you hit on something though in that the issue is partly in what people are looking to accomplish with money and how it's used.
  6. I agree with the commenters. In addition to society's obsession with obtaining more-and-more-things and keeping up with the joneses, I feel deeply the pointlessness of being a corporate citizen in a toxic, bottom-line driven, bureaucratic workplace. It's dark but honestly true that it's more than trading time for money. For me, I have ended up trading being alive for being able to earn money to live. At stake has been sanity, spirit, health, sleep, and things important to me such as other work I have to do in life via my art. I need to get myself into a better situation; and your post reminds me of that fact... Anyway, meanwhile I'm doing my best to cope with it. :| To reply to the comments about solitude: for a while I have chosen to live in places that have a strong nature element... I recently purchased a humble, little house in the city on a cul-de-sac that happens to back up to an 8 acre piece of wilderness. I don't own the wilderness; but I have a screened-in porch (with lighting, electrical, etc.) that is oriented toward the forest. Weather permitting I'm out there, soaking in some peace.
  7. How about art in some form? Even doodling, zen tangling, coloring book coloring, scribbling, abstract, finger painting, paper cutouts, anything. Art / craft can be calming if it suits you; and in my wording I meant to imply that it doesn't have to be 'fine art' or anything... Sending positive vibes.
  8. Gandolf, Just a brief note to say my heart also aches for you from afar. You describe the situation intelligently and eloquently; and I know these types of torturous circumstances all too well and firsthand... Wishing you strength in this time of pain and difficulty. Your friend is likely correct that a more suitable, compatible work situation would boost your overall circumstances and outlook. I suspect that you haven't yet found the right job or career for you. I also suspect that what you're describing might be a form of work-related PTSD (?) PS - I'm overwhelmed with (9-to-5, that isn't 9-to-5) work, but I will PM you when I get a chance.
  9. OP, I'm very sorry to hear of your family experiences. Your story calls to mind my own background. My father is deceased now, but all my life would say I was 'just like my mother' and other things to try to run me down. Even older, he attempted to jab at me with phrases such as he 'never expected me to make anything of myself'. He was nearly always judgmental and looked down on others, to make himself feel better. Anyway, when I reached an age where I could really comprehend the insults, it was shocking that an adult would behave that way, especially with their own child. I'm not per se suggesting it's what you should do, but for me when I was old enough to see the toxicity and understand that it would never change despite my efforts to 'manage' him, I detached and minimized contact. Thank you for sharing your story. You're a survivor. Thanks also for the various reading recommendations in the thread. I will look into them.
  10. Gandolf, I agree that it's disturbing - and honestly it's just another layer of issues, as I see it. What I mean is that we were already dealing with companies using 'the economy' as an excuse to not pay fairly, provide healthcare benefits, cut hours, and such. Then we have ageism, racism, favoritism, etc., that come into play. We have outsourcing/offshoring that's affected a great many people (myself included). Difficulty completing in freelance work, versus those in India who will do a job for $3/hour. Indeed, automation adds another pile of issues. We have a heck of a mighty problem on our hands, and realistically more to come down the pike. I have no idea what's going to become of us. Apologies if that sounds negative; it's the 'truth' as I see it.
  11. LostLink, One observation is that although you're aware your family uses an unhealthy approach, you're still perhaps in a power struggle. Sometimes we try and try, but there's nothing we can do. There's knowing that on the surface; and then there's fully accepting it, and I say that out of love. But to answer your post: it becomes a matter of self-protection and self-survival needing to trump all (which you know). I'd say do your best to get through the situation if you have to be in it / you're not able to currently relocate. Once you are able to relocate, I would definitely do so, and from that point would carefully consider the level of contact you maintain in the future. When family is manipulative, we have no choice except to disconnect in some fashion... I don't know why life sees fit to challenge many of us with difficult family dynamics; but finding our way through, mostly alone, seems to be what we're called to do. I've been in a somewhat similar situation regarding family who are emotional vampires. It definitely does create wounds and an increased need for approval / validation -versus- those who came from healthy dynamics. But that doesn't mean it's insurmountable. From what I've read while here, you're tenacious, which works in your favor.
  12. I don't really have any stories I care to detail, OP ;-). But to say generally, I've been there many times. And in various ways with romantic situations, family, friends, colleagues, etc. In the net, I'd now prefer to be completely alone than to be around someone who's an emotional vampire. What I can control, I do. And yes, it takes hard knocks to get to the place where a person draws that boundary, and decides to stay behind the line, come what may. Depression, I think, does have a way of tending to dull our radar and reaction timing. Any number of other variables can come into play in terms of common inner elements like low self esteem and loneliness (a big one in turning a blind eye); and outer elements such as peer pressure, opportunism, bullying, and manipulation. No matter the sort of situation, I strongly feel we have to learn to hear, develop, and fully trust-in our inner voice. When something feels like 'being used', it probably is. By the time we're questioning things, we're likely already in our soul well-aware that something's wrong; it's our mind that lags behind, trying to process it and catch up. Gut feeling (what some may even term 'common sense') needs to be a guide; else many people will steamroll over us. It's tough to do when in low-spirits, but is especially necessary for self-protection when depressed. As the saying goes, 'fool me twice ...' When we stifle observation and intuitive instinct, there's a price to pay. It's the self-loathing, I find for me, that's the primary killer. Thank you for the blessing of inner peace. I wish the same for you, and for all the members here.
  13. In some ways I'm not too nostalgic, I think, in that I wouldn't at all want to go too far back to younger days. My childhood and young adulthood was honestly too hard for that. For me, mine were not so much good old days... That said, I do occasionally reminisce about people I miss. Passing by places (bookstores and restaurants) I used to go to with a former friend. Something spontaneously conjured from my data bank, that for some reason reminds me of great conversations and laughs (so hard you can't breathe) with someone no longer in my life. Driving by the house that used to be my Grandma's reminds me of missing her; and being sad that she didn't get to know me as an adult. (Too bad I couldn't have been taught her recipes. She was the best cook ever!) Listening to many bands I loved, and still love, brings about a kind of general remembrance of the passage of time. Smiths or Moz, Siouxsie, The Creatures, Echo & The Bunnymen, Joy Division, Peter Murphy or Bauhaus, The Cure, too many to name them all. Vintage photos of deceased family are a wistful walk down memory lane.
  14. Ah, yes. I hear you... But what I'm saying is that perhaps we need to view some assumptions from a different angle. ;) It's easy to presume that most other people have it way better. Especially because in our culture, humans have become conditioned to be phony and lie through their teeth about how great their lives supposedly are. Such fit as a fiddle and strutting like a peacock vibes are like status and power symbols. What people say or 'what they seem like' isn't an accurate way to know. The truth is most people have some type of issues or struggles that they're attempting to keep out of view. Heck, look at celebrities that we'd think have it all; but they tell us they are depressed, anxious, taking hard street drugs and/or alcoholic, and miserable from the pressure of being rich and famous (!) But, sure, there are some people who have it better... I think all we can do is aim to be the best version of ourselves that we're able in the time that we here. Sending good-evening vibes.
  15. If it helps to know, I can understand what you're saying, OP. In a sense, I feel similarly in terms of being ashamed of 'having issues'. Then I try to remind myself that I've been through things outside my control that were very difficult. And (in a dry humor way) I start to see a flip-side that given my experiences, it's kinda surprising I'm as sane as I am. I also try to remember that just getting up everyday is a battle; and that there are people who aren't able to work / function at all. Things could be better, but they could be worse too. Perhaps you could say the same of yourself. Feel free to private message me as well... Enjoy your evening with your cross stitch art! I'm doing the same with my sketchbook.
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