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  • April 2013

    I’ve noticed that now that everyone knows what I’m dealing with and going through that they don’t know how to act when they see me or my family. It’s awkward and  people don’t know what to say. So I’m writing this to help you how to interact.

    Don’t ask, “How are you doing?” or “How are you feeling?” The reason: I feel worse than you can imagine. There are levels and levels of pain and issues that come up as a result of that. You don’t really want to know and I don’t really want to trap you with a long explanation  I don’t even want to tell you the truth… that I feel completely crappy. You can  imagine how that would go. No, I’m going to lie to you. I’m going to tell you that I’m just fine. Right as rain. Because I don’t want to drag you down or be rude… and explaining how I am doing would take a while… and you’re not aware of the Pandora’s Box you’ve opened. So I protect you from that with a  fake smile and a quick lie, “I’m fine!” Please don’t make me lie.

    I understand that this is a natural thing to ask anyone, especially someone that’s ailing… but with depression it’s the worst question you can ask. My wife doesn’t even ask. Asking that puts my brain into a self aware state. In an instant I realize that I don’t feel well, that I’m going to disappoint the person asking with the truth, how awkward the situation is, that my whole life, even silly little human interactions, has been affected by this disease and that the future is most likely going to be filled with more things like this and pretty much my entire life and future is screwed. So yeah. It’s a bad question to ask.

    Just say, “Hello”, “Good to see you,” or “Please walk away. You’re depression is getting on me.” It doesn’t require a response and doesn’t force me to lie to your face. [click to continue…]

    “Depression, that’s why”.

    Whatever question you may have about my lack of social media interaction, lack of podcasting, lack of artistic expression, and more recently, lack of job, can be answered by that sentence.

    Depression is a broad term that people like me say so they don’t have to talk about anxiety, mood swings, physical pain, hopelessness and more. Especially when talking to people who don’t know much about it. Which is most people. Not that I’m actually talking to that many people.

    I’ve struggled with depression in general for a few years now. It started as a general feeling of doom. I went through every day just feeling like everything I did was bound to fail. A friend suggested I see my doctor for this, which blew my mind that you could (or would) see a doctor about such a thing. So I did and I was given a series of meds. Some worked for a while, some didn’t work at all, others brought out anger, and another made me want to sit on the floor all the time. Eventually through months of trial and error we found a drug that managed my serotonin levels and things were just dandy. They stayed that way for about three years.

    In those three years I had left my children’s ministry position at a large church in Kansas City for a church in St. Petersburg. Florida was where my wife wanted to raise our kids. Closer to family… and the beach. I was convinced that the high-stress of my former job was the cause of my depression. I didn’t even think to mention it to my new employer and pastor. It was something in my past that we had gotten through and over. The new job surely would make taking any pills unnecessary. [click to continue…]