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Dave485

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I guess I'll start with a bit of back story. I'm 26 years old. I left college after my first semester, because I felt that it wasn't for me. I was doing well, but I just couldn't get past the fact that I felt that the whole process was completely ridiculous. You basically have to go through a gauntlet of bulls*** before you can even start thinking about taking courses that are actually going to apply towards the career of your choice, and even then, in most cases, that isn't going to prepare you for what lays ahead anyway.

In today's society you're basically pigeon-holed into a system that is guaranteeing $50,000-$200,000 of debt for the off-chance that you'll be able to land a job, post graduation, in the field of your choosing. It's despicable, misleading, and it gives kids false hope. If you go against the system and don't follow that path, and what you were previously doing falls through, you are ****ed. Very few employers are going to hire someone with no degree or experience, regardless of leadership skills, or how motivated or intelligent they may be.

Anyway, after I left school I moved to Las Vegas, where I worked as an assistant at a pretty well known establishment. Well, being under 21 in Vegas is terrible. It's very difficult to meet genuine, like-minded people, and the folks you do meet aren't exactly friend material. After a little over a year I became severely depressed. I felt alone. So, I moved back to my home town in Massachusetts. Still depressed, I had no idea what I was going to do with my life. I did know (or thought I knew), however, that I didn't want to be another 9:00-5:00 slave who sacrifices his or her life to work a soul-stealing job that they despise.

After wallowing in my depression for a while I end up getting a job recruiting models for a website that my friend was a partial owner of. That lasted about a year. I was never on an official payroll and they were posturing to sell the company, so in essence, I was no longer needed. As a parting gift, my friend got me a gig writing for a popular blogging network.

Finally, something I felt that I really enjoyed doing, I loved it! Well...fast forward a year, and just like everything else in my life, that didn't last either. The blogging network I was a part of got sold and lost its soul. The corporate influence completely destroyed everything we had initially set out to be.

Moving forward, 24 now, still severely depressed, and again I have no idea what I'm going to do. I move to California to stay with an online friend who was going to UCSD. On the weekends we would go to LA and eventually we started hanging around the Comedy clubs a lot. I got to know a lot of the comics, made some solid friends, and started enjoying my life for the first time ever. Well, a few months later my friend was graduating. After graduation she was moving back to Hawaii. She asked me to come with her, but for whatever reason I declined. I ended up moving back to my home town in Massachusetts, yet again.

So, here I am today. I'm 26. I have absolutely no close friends. No girlfriend. No close family. Little money. No job. Nothing of substance to put on a resume. Nothing. Basically, I am hopeless. I am a shell of my former self. My depression has gotten way out of control. I used to be able to put the blinders on a bit and tell myself that everything would be okay. I can no longer do that. I'm a very logical person. I feel that I am irrevocably screwed.

The loneliness above all else is what really is making me remarkably sad. I have many acquaintances, but literally no people I would call close friends. Some weekends I hang out with acquaintances at bars, and I smile, laugh, tell stories, etc...but Inside I feel dead and alone, and honestly, I don't even like going to bars. I hate the atmosphere, and you can't really get to know people. In these same bars I meet girls, they tell me I'm handsome and give me compliments, but I'm a fraud. I can't tell them the truth about where my life is heading. I want companionship, but I feel that I can't be fully honest. My two biggest fears in life are to A) become a loser, and B) end up alone. I am living my nightmare.

I can no longer go a day without thinking about suicide. I don't think I will do it, but I can't really get the thoughts out of my head. I feel hopeless. I feel alone. I have really no idea what to do. I don't talk about my situation with anybody in real life, because I have too much pride and I don't want to seem like I'm insane. I really have no idea what I'm going to do. I feel my existence is a torturous one.

Edited by Dave485
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Dave, I hear you. I'm 28 and married, but I'm experiencing the same feelings you are. I have no job, no friends, and nothing to put on a resume. I also contemplate suicide on a daily basis. I am painfully lonely.

I wish I could offer some words of encouragement, but I really can't think of what to say. Depression has a way of stealing a person's joy and ambition.

But I will say that you don't give yourself enough credit. You sound like a great guy and anyone would be lucky to have you as a friend, even with depression. You are not a loser.

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College is not for every HS grad. Sometimes, years later, college is more agreeable and you go. Getting decent jobs nowadays without some sort of diploma is vanashing. I think "mom and pop" businesses look at qualified applicants-not degrees. If you know about what they want and you can do it, you will most likely get the job. With m & p businesses, the pay usually stays low and there's no real opportunity for advancement (unless it's a huge company with different departments.) Working for m&P's is good for your resume. If you think about each of the jobs you've ever had, what did you excell at? Did you go beyond your job expectations (volunteer for helping other depts., work overtime, up with new ideas, etc.) ?

Have you sought help for your depression?

Sheep

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Since you have the intelligence and self-awareness to recognize your situation and pinpoint the key factors that are creating it, ask yourself how exactly pride is any kind of barrier to seeking the companionship you so obviously need.

Male pride is now more of a sales tool than any kind of functional element for social order. It reaches so far down into our psyche that anyone who knows how to pull its strings effectively knows how to control a man. Marketing and psychology were a match made in Hell.

Follow the logic. Does "falling on your sword" bring greater pride than showing your wounds? Who knows, maybe it does.

Believe me, I'm really asking myself these questions as much as I'm asking you them. I struggle with the same fundamental issues as you do, and I've also come to the same, unfortunate, conclusions.

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Hi Dave,

After reading your post, I felt compelled to write to you.

You said you have now moved back to your hometown in Massachusetts. Do you have family there and do you live with them or someone else? Are they supportive of you? Do they know how you are feeling right now? I think you should start by getting some treatment for your depression, whether it be counseling, medication, or both. Even if you are low on money, there are places you can go that the fee is based on a sliding scale and a lot of the time they will give you free samples of medicine. There are also support groups where you could meet people.

I myself, feel like I only have one or two friends that I can talk to, and I do have some supportive and caring family members. I hope you can pick just one person that you feel like you can trust, to talk to and confide in. It can be so helpful. You can even find that here on this forum. You are only 26-you have your whole life in front of you. I am sure there is a very special young lady coming your way when the time is right!

Are you interested in going back to college? It is possible to get grant money to help with the cost of tuition and books. If you decide to take a class or two, the school's financial aid department can help you with that. You could always work a part time job while taking a class or two. You would meet people that way, and probably a lot in the same predicament as you are in. It may appeal to you someday when you are feeling better.

I think you could work up a resume with the jobs that you have had. There are ways to get help doing resumes as well such as your state department of unemployment assistance, and lots of internet websites.

Try to take one day at a time, one step at a time. I know I just threw a lot of suggestions at you and I am sorry if it sounded overwhelming. Sometimes, even when you feel horrible, you have to MAKE yourself do things, one at a time. You are one of a kind and a very special person, uniquely and wonderfully created by God. You are of great value, and you matter. Please do not think of ending a life that matters so much.

Things can and will get better. It will just take some time, and some effort.

Please keep me and all of us updated because I care and I am sure that there are many others that can relate to what you are going through and care and understand.

Hugs-TAKE CARE!

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Hi Dave485,

You might be experiencing a quarter life crisis. A quarter life crisis is the turmoil that young adults experience in making the transition to adulthood. Many changes occur in the transition to adulthood and it can be challenging to adjust to the changes. There are many young adults who are currently experiencing a quarter life crisis. You can find more information about a quarter life crisis online.

I agree that is daunting trying to decide what to do with our lives. There are so many options, and it is hard to know in advance which option is most compatible with our lives. Deciding on a career is often a stressful, daunting and complex task. Often the only way to know what to do with our lives is through trial and error. You can try various volunteer jobs to see whether they work out for you.

You could also pray and ask a higher power for assistance. Even if you are agnostic or atheist, there is no harm in praying. There have been stories of people who have been assisted by a higher power through coincidences or GOD Winks. For example, you turn on the TV and suddenly an advertisement about a career that you are interested in appears, or you find a book in a park that will help you with your problem.

Another suggestion to help you through this problem is laughter. I have noticed many adults appear to become overly serious about life and rarely laugh. Laughter helps to remind us not to take life too seriously and it is a wonderful mood enhancer. Laughter also helps us put some perspective on our problems. There are many hilarious videos and jokes on online.

Your post was well expressed and coherent. When it comes to applying for jobs, this is a useful skill to have.

I hope this helps =).

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I hope Dave is reading all your comments, All of them give me hope for my sons who are only a few years younger then Dave and for myself w/ depression.

Hi Mea,

Best wishes in your recovery from depression and to your sons. One thing that we are not taught at schools or university is the transition from teenager, young adult to adult. Transitioning from one stage of life to another can be confusing, daunting, anxiety provoking and challenging, because we are confronted with a new stage of life that we have no prior experience with. Having said that, there are also good points about becoming an adult. It is not all bad. lol =).

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Hi Dave,

After reading your post, I felt compelled to write to you.

You said you have now moved back to your hometown in Massachusetts. Do you have family there and do you live with them or someone else? Are they supportive of you? Do they know how you are feeling right now? I think you should start by getting some treatment for your depression, whether it be counseling, medication, or both. Even if you are low on money, there are places you can go that the fee is based on a sliding scale and a lot of the time they will give you free samples of medicine. There are also support groups where you could meet people.

I myself, feel like I only have one or two friends that I can talk to, and I do have some supportive and caring family members. I hope you can pick just one person that you feel like you can trust, to talk to and confide in. It can be so helpful. You can even find that here on this forum. You are only 26-you have your whole life in front of you. I am sure there is a very special young lady coming your way when the time is right!

Are you interested in going back to college? It is possible to get grant money to help with the cost of tuition and books. If you decide to take a class or two, the school's financial aid department can help you with that. You could always work a part time job while taking a class or two. You would meet people that way, and probably a lot in the same predicament as you are in. It may appeal to you someday when you are feeling better.

I think you could work up a resume with the jobs that you have had. There are ways to get help doing resumes as well such as your state department of unemployment assistance, and lots of internet websites.

Try to take one day at a time, one step at a time. I know I just threw a lot of suggestions at you and I am sorry if it sounded overwhelming. Sometimes, even when you feel horrible, you have to MAKE yourself do things, one at a time. You are one of a kind and a very special person, uniquely and wonderfully created by God. You are of great value, and you matter. Please do not think of ending a life that matters so much.

Things can and will get better. It will just take some time, and some effort.

Please keep me and all of us updated because I care and I am sure that there are many others that can relate to what you are going through and care and understand.

Hugs-TAKE CARE!

My family isn't very close. I am an only child and my extended family really just doesn't communicate aside from holdays. Also, I have too much pride to admit that anything is wrong with me to anybody in real life. Not that I have anybody to talk to anyway. I have no real friends just a bunch of acquaintances.

Talking to a psychiatrist or psychologist really ins't for me. My feelings are that they are paid to be there, they don't genuinely care. It's just a job to them. As for meds, I don't want to become a slave to the pharmaceutical companies. I understand that talking to professionals and getting on the right cocktail of drugs has helped many people, but it's just not something I feel is right for me. I've been researching natural antidepressants like 5-HTP and I'll probably give that a go.

I'm not interested in college. I don't need a piece of paper to tell me what I supposedly know and don't know, or what I can an can't do. I've had the internet since I was in the 4th grade. I've learned a lot about and how to do many different things. In standard schooling you don't exactly learn to learn. You learn to take tests. The actual knowledge you retain is very minimal. I know a lot of people with college diplomas, and the majority of them aren't exactly bright. So to automatically get placed behind them when searching for a job, just because I don't posses a piece of paper is extremely disheartening.

I feel that I could do many different things if just given the opportunity. I'm a very quick hands-on learner, I'm intelligent, I'm assertive, and I am a good leader who actually knows how to treat people. But convincing employers this while having no work experience in whatever particular field is nearly impossible.

I don't really know if I'm depressed in a chemical sense. I think I'm just a super logical person. I feel that if I had a job that I felt was right for me, and met some GENUINE friends I'd start feeling happy again. I had a girl tell me that I seemed shy on Saturday night while we were standing around talking. Nobody has really ever told me that. I feel that my state of mind is really starting to affect my personality. I just don't know... I never saw my life like this. It hurts... I am a shell of my former self I wouldn't wish pain like this on my worst enemy. I truly wish I could meet someone who I could open up to, but I fear that if they knew the truth about me they would run away and never speak to me again.

Anyway, thanks for the comments guys. I really appreciate it. Pretty sure that I'm hopeless.

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(((Dave485)))

I completely understand what you're concerned about. You remind me a lot of myself. I was scared to try going to a therapist or getting on meds for my anxiety. I was convinced I could get out of this on my own. I tried to cope up until the point when I had a total breakdown and knew I needed to do something more. I knew I needed help, whatever that would entail.

After that I started on Zoloft which was my first AD ever. In fact the only "daily" med I've ever taken. I was concerned it would make me a zombie. I thought I would end up feeling numb. I didn't want to rely on some pill for my happiness. The thing is, I learned that it's not like this at all. For me, Zoloft was a life saver. When I'm taking it, I don't feel like anything BUT myself. I feel more like my old self than I ever did since all this mental illness started. It doesn't change who you are as a person and it doesn't make you feel anything different. It just helps you put that depression aside and find your true self through that fog.

Basically when it comes to getting well, we need to utilize all the tools we can. There's so many things we can do. Therapy, meds, faith, family, friends, and support groups. Even places like here. Anything you can find that helps, it all adds up in your box until you have enough tools to get well and stay that way. The thing is, you HAVE to be willing to try. You can't simply will depression away. Trust me, I tried and it didn't work out well in the end. Now that I'm feeling much stronger I realize that all these things I've learned and all the help I got was paramount to my recovery and management of my illness.

You're not hopeless by any means. You just have to make a choice to help yourself and then stick with that choice. Search for whatever you can accept and maybe think outside of the normal a little bit. You can beat this, but you don't have to do it all on your own.

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Hi Dave,

After reading your post, I felt compelled to write to you.

You said you have now moved back to your hometown in Massachusetts. Do you have family there and do you live with them or someone else? Are they supportive of you? Do they know how you are feeling right now? I think you should start by getting some treatment for your depression, whether it be counseling, medication, or both. Even if you are low on money, there are places you can go that the fee is based on a sliding scale and a lot of the time they will give you free samples of medicine. There are also support groups where you could meet people.

I myself, feel like I only have one or two friends that I can talk to, and I do have some supportive and caring family members. I hope you can pick just one person that you feel like you can trust, to talk to and confide in. It can be so helpful. You can even find that here on this forum. You are only 26-you have your whole life in front of you. I am sure there is a very special young lady coming your way when the time is right!

Are you interested in going back to college? It is possible to get grant money to help with the cost of tuition and books. If you decide to take a class or two, the school's financial aid department can help you with that. You could always work a part time job while taking a class or two. You would meet people that way, and probably a lot in the same predicament as you are in. It may appeal to you someday when you are feeling better.

I think you could work up a resume with the jobs that you have had. There are ways to get help doing resumes as well such as your state department of unemployment assistance, and lots of internet websites.

Try to take one day at a time, one step at a time. I know I just threw a lot of suggestions at you and I am sorry if it sounded overwhelming. Sometimes, even when you feel horrible, you have to MAKE yourself do things, one at a time. You are one of a kind and a very special person, uniquely and wonderfully created by God. You are of great value, and you matter. Please do not think of ending a life that matters so much.

Things can and will get better. It will just take some time, and some effort.

Please keep me and all of us updated because I care and I am sure that there are many others that can relate to what you are going through and care and understand.

Hugs-TAKE CARE!

My family isn't very close. I am an only child and my extended family really just doesn't communicate aside from holdays. Also, I have too much pride to admit that anything is wrong with me to anybody in real life. Not that I have anybody to talk to anyway. I have no real friends just a bunch of acquaintances.

Talking to a psychiatrist or psychologist really ins't for me. My feelings are that they are paid to be there, they don't genuinely care. It's just a job to them. As for meds, I don't want to become a slave to the pharmaceutical companies. I understand that talking to professionals and getting on the right cocktail of drugs has helped many people, but it's just not something I feel is right for me. I've been researching natural antidepressants like 5-HTP and I'll probably give that a go.

I'm not interested in college. I don't need a piece of paper to tell me what I supposedly know and don't know, or what I can an can't do. I've had the internet since I was in the 4th grade. I've learned a lot about and how to do many different things. In standard schooling you don't exactly learn to learn. You learn to take tests. The actual knowledge you retain is very minimal. I know a lot of people with college diplomas, and the majority of them aren't exactly bright. So to automatically get placed behind them when searching for a job, just because I don't posses a piece of paper is extremely disheartening.

I feel that I could do many different things if just given the opportunity. I'm a very quick hands-on learner, I'm intelligent, I'm assertive, and I am a good leader who actually knows how to treat people. But convincing employers this while having no work experience in whatever particular field is nearly impossible.

I don't really know if I'm depressed in a chemical sense. I think I'm just a super logical person. I feel that if I had a job that I felt was right for me, and met some GENUINE friends I'd start feeling happy again. I had a girl tell me that I seemed shy on Saturday night while we were standing around talking. Nobody has really ever told me that. I feel that my state of mind is really starting to affect my personality. I just don't know... I never saw my life like this. It hurts... I am a shell of my former self I wouldn't wish pain like this on my worst enemy. I truly wish I could meet someone who I could open up to, but I fear that if they knew the truth about me they would run away and never speak to me again.

Anyway, thanks for the comments guys. I really appreciate it. Pretty sure that I'm hopeless.

Self-fulfilling prophecy is exampled nicely when the essence of that final sentence of yours, and of just about any depressive, dominates your outlook. Believing you'll succeed is not a guarantee for success. But conviction of failure is a sure shot way of realizing it. You're probably already aware of that - you're obviously quite intelligent - but some truisms deserve repetition.

Unearthing and chasing opportunity is not for the depressed. You need a bit of relief, which will seem unattainable if you're down. It isn't. But I've been around the block enough times over the past 15 years to know that intellect will always be trumped by emotion. Depression can be even tougher for those who can posit their way to confirming what they feel, and then believe they have validated their theories, but only by virtue of having argued themselves further into a slump. What I'm trying to say is, don't bother trying to outsmart depression. Ride it out. Try to put yourself in situations that minimize the need for thought.

When you do get lifted out a bit, find an ear. Therapy does work in the sense that you can confide in someone who is sworn to silence. There is an indescribable difference between thinking or writing out your sincere thoughts and sharing them openly with another, non-judgemental person. The difference is unimaginable, despite how much we can try to convince ourselves that simply ruminating over those thoughts will somehow reveal a deeper meaning or soul-lifting epiphany. Talk to a real person about it. A therapist is one option. Possibly deepening your relationship with an acquaintance would be a possibility.

The biggest mistake made by those who divulge their depression is playing the victim card - self-pity pushes people away. Why, I don't really know, though it may be because it pulls the shroud off their own insecurities and leaves them feeling exposed. You don't have to come right out with it, anyhow. Developing a rapport with someone is more about each person surrendering their vulnerabilities bit by bit.

I experienced this unexpectedly with one of our auditors this past summer when she revealed some pretty raw facts about herself, albeit in a positive light that displayed her flaws as matter of fact and reality, rather than points of soreness and pain - even though I'm sure the experiences surrounding those had not been pleasant, to say the least. In return I found myself, typically a very, very guarded person, reciprocating and conveying my own doubts, insecurities and issues. Within several hours felt I was in love with her. More accurately, what I had experienced was the birth of a true relationship; one where we rather quickly built up a mutual trust in our shared secrets and hidden fantasies. In probably what was one of the very few fleeting moments in my life, during a mundane review of the company health and safety system, I felt true love. And it didn't take all that much, mostly because she had been so forthright and open.

Anyhow, opening up to someone is a precious gift. At the same time it's a risk. The rewards far outweigh the benefits. I only wish I had the strength of will to follow my own advice more often.

As far as employment goes, and speaking in some part as an employer myself, one suggestion to you would be to start off at the ground floor, or the highest level you can attain, in whichever industry it is you feel passionate for then take it from there. In most cases it's either school or direct work experience that will pull you into the higher positions that can challenge and truly appreciate your strengths and qualities. That "piece of paper" colleges hand out isn't necessarily for you - I put my diploma up on my fridge then lost it while moving - but for the sake of potential employers who often see it as a vetting report that says "This guy can think critically in some capacity, is capable of completing tasks and knows how to follow instruction".

I agree that medication and intensive therapy are not what you need. In fact, you've already identified the fundamentals: a confidant or two (i.e. friends) and fulfilling activities.

As I said earlier, my response is more a chat in the mirror. The fundamental commonalities are so similar I might as well be talking to myself.

Take it for what you will, you've already got most things figured out it seems. The biochemical component to depression is real, but it's just as relevant to every single other facet of human behaviour. Thoughts affect chemistry, chemistry affects thought. Emotion directs thought and action (behaviour) just as behaviour influences emotion and thought. The linear correlation between cause and effect is over simplified and viewed from a reductionist point of view, rather than a much more encompassing holistic perspective that sees reality from a broader understanding.

To sum up a whole lotta nothing:

Connect with someone on a deeper level. The depression may disappear altogether from that alone, and you'll find yourself sharing those experiences much later: as a phase you passed through in life that's now well behind you.

And while you're at it, you might as well follow a balanced lifestyle of regular exercise, diet, sleep and hygiene if you aren't already. It's so basic and far too much is it grossly overcomplicated by a perverse scientific perfectionism that's further warped by commercially driven vanity. "Should I go with a 35/35/30 mix of carb,protein fat or stick more to 30/35/30?" Oh the stresses of the modern world!

You have passions. You have qualities. You have a sense of where you are and where you need to be. You'll be fine, just fine someone to share the journey with.

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I agree with Darcness and Mirthless. Sharing your innermost thoughts and feelings with a mental health practitioner is therapeutic. When you share your innermost thoughts and feelings and express them, the thoughts and feelings are no longer 'trapped' inside your body and you feel an feeling of relief as if a huge weight has been taken off your shoulders.

Also, other people can give you a different perspective, that you could not have thought of, on your problems. Sometimes, the problem with trying to solve some problems on our own is that we can only find solutions that fit own thinking style. Other solutions are omitted because we cannot think of them due our thinking styles.

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"WELL SAID!" Mirthless, darcness, and Rainbowstar.

Do what you can, with what you have, where you are.

Believe you can and you're halfway there.

Theodore Roosevelt

Dave, I will be remembering you in my prayers.

Hugs.......

Edited by lindahurt
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