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fatty
Advanced Contributer

United Kingdom
399 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2017 :  10:53:58  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Guys can i ask for advice?

In November i started having some strange episodes which made me think i was losing my mind. The end result is that i was diagnosed in the new year with having anxiety and depression. Im not too bad at the moment due to being on medication and just generally looking after myself more.

What really helped though was initially admitting I've got a problem. Talking about it with my wife and a work colleague (who was also going through the exactly same strangely enough) was a massive boost.

In my experience having opened up about it to a very small number of confidants has been such a help. I never thought talking about it openly would do any good at all but it has. I can't explain it.

In this day and age we're bombarded in the media about being able to open up about mental illness and not being afraid to admit it openly.

However.....

I think there is still a stigma attached to it despite what we're told. Im the sort of person who wears his heart on his sleeve and i mistakenly told an old school friend via social media and he's since blanked me. Also Ive overheard people in passing, although no direct reference to me, thinking of it as a weakness. "Should man up", "Grow a pair" etc etc.

I think the old proverb springs to mind "Never throw your pearls to pigs or they will turn and tear you to pieces" very sadly springs to mind.

So my request for advice is how should i go about opening up about it without it backfiring. Anyone got any personal experience to share?

All the caring sharing nonsense posts you read on FB makes me think so many people are wolves in sheeps clothing really.

Having read Craig Blundells blogs about his experience with this really inspired me. But at the moment i don't think i could be as brave as him coming out about it.

One upshot is that I've had to bin the drink and I've lost my spare tyre. No longer fatty so may need a new username! Lol.

Sorry to ramble on

Brigham
Advanced Contributer

United Kingdom
8239 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2017 :  12:08:56  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Fatty,

I went through a long period of depression quite a few years ago. I actually found talking to most people (friends/family) about it not that helpful, for some weird reason. However, I went to see a couple of counselors until I found one that I clicked with and that really did help me and certainly helped put things into perspective. The fluoxetine also helped a great deal.

I also bought a book to try and self-learn Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) - the techniques that most counselors use - and, I think, the act of just buying the book seemed to help. Almost like 'I'm doing something about it'. Oh yes, and getting down the gym and definitely knocking the drink on the head will help.

In terms of outside perception, I never had any of the experiences you write of but I can understand that in this day and age of the self-centred, pig ignorance of the masses, coupled with the endemic trolling on social media for the slightest imperfection, it must be quite prevalent.

My experience taught me that depression means different things to different people and, until it happens to you, you never really understand its effects. It's also pretty insidious in that it kind of creeps up on you slowly. It also has very different effects on every sufferer.

In my particular case, it shattered my confidence and, even now, some ten years later, I still have less confidence before my episode although I'm now 'well'.

All I can say mate, is try your best to ignore the ignorant idiots and if you can't afford professional counselling, then keep talking to your closest friends or the people who understand. That, coupled with your medication, will make all the difference and set you on the path to wellness.

Good luck dude.


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Booma
Advanced Contributer

United Kingdom
362 Posts

Posted - 06/05/2017 :  16:02:07  Show Profile  Visit Booma's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Hi fatty,
Thank you and well done for coming on here and raising this subject. My own experience of this type of thing (myself a little and family, sadly, much more) has shown that depression, anxiety, lack of self-confidence and stress are so incestuously linked and feeding off each other that it is very difficult for a layperson to understand and an expert to properly diagnose. It makes me very angry to hear there are still people who can be so arrogant and dismissive as to not realise we are talking about real and debilitating issues. So the first thing I did was to decide that such people are not worth my energy or time which I know is hard because self-confidence has taken a hit but tell yourself, cos its true, that you are already a braver, smarter and more human person than them simply for facing your issues.
Im not qualified to offer advice but would encourage you to keep talking, exercising and playing the drums and do reach out to this forum. I know its not as busy as in days gone by but there will be many people here with similar experiences to your own and though they may not respond, will understand your words and appreciate you taking time to share. In short, you are not alone in this.
Wishing you well,

www.bluescalepublishing.co.uk
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Captain Bubble
Advanced Contributer

United Kingdom
19675 Posts

Posted - 07/05/2017 :  08:34:11  Show Profile  Visit Captain Bubble's Homepage  Reply with Quote
No real experience myself of this, and not much to ad to previous posts, but if friends and contacts are negative about your problems they are not worthy of being your friends. It is better to have one or two good friends than a thousand fair weather friends. Concentrate your energy on those that are worth it.

Marcus de Mowbray
www.330studios.co.uk/marcus
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fatty
Advanced Contributer

United Kingdom
399 Posts

Posted - 07/05/2017 :  09:39:56  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thank you all very much for the advice.

Ive seen previous posts on here where people have opened up about personal issues. Always handled really sensitively which led to realise this forum is a safe haven. I most certainly wouldn't feel able to do that openly on my social media. I wouldn't say that anyone on there would come out and make a negative comment, but having been blanked by a so called old friend has left me thinking it could leave me tainted in certain peoples eyes.

You're so right in that people who view others as weak in their hour of need i consider them weak. In the case of most not in a nasty way but they don't know enough about what others are going through, can't face it and are unable to empathise.

So thanks guys. If i need to talk more i'll come out and say it on here.

Anyway the sun is out and i feel great today so I'm off out. Have a great day people and thanks again!
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murphster
Advanced Contributer

United Kingdom
354 Posts

Posted - 07/05/2017 :  14:10:29  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hi fatty (feels bad calling you that by the way!). Firstly,very well done for opening up about depression. There is a still a huge stigma about mental health,but it is massively important that everyone is open about it and free and frank discussion allowed to exist in a non judgemental way. Posts like yours help to break barriers. I have some experience through work rather than personally and i can see how quickly things can turn badly for people and how unfortunately there can be a lack of available professional help. There is help though and more than often the best help comes from those who have had a similar experience. I like the way you're looking at exercise and other things to help yourself rather than the default position of anti depressants. Not that they're bad its just i think its all too often the easier option for health professionals to dish them out. Anyway best of luck and its heartening to see the support you are getting will get on the forum.
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fatty
Advanced Contributer

United Kingdom
399 Posts

Posted - 07/05/2017 :  22:00:48  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thanks Murphster. My Fatty name came from harsh brotherly banter. Ive been called far worse so don't worry mate.

Oh and BTW. It hasn't helped me being a lifelong Leyton Orient supporter either and their worst season in 136 years!!!

But all joking aside what really brought it all home was a chat with a counsellor. Our first conversation he wanted to know i wasn't planning on taking my own life. That really choked me up that so many people get to that stage that its so unbearable. But won't worry I'm planning on sticking around :)
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Unkle Kev
Advanced Contributer

United Kingdom
2164 Posts

Posted - 08/05/2017 :  18:24:26  Show Profile  Visit Unkle Kev's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Anxiety, depression and stress realated health issues are universal. Everyone experiences them. Only the degrees and impacts vary.

I go through regular phases where my mood and thoughts can be very dark, have done since puberty (I'm kind of just emerging from the most recent episode, so this post made a mark on me). I'm kind of used to it, but I've never actually asked anyone if I can do anything about it. I think that's got more to do with acceptance than any fear of perceptions. I've been to the doctor with stress related health issues (mostly work related), but they've never offered any help with the stress, only the health issues. But then, I didn't explicitly ask for help either.

I find it hard to ask for help for one reason only. I've never wanted to burden others with my troubles. Which is daft as I don't doubt for one second the people I'm honoured to call my friends and loved ones would help in an instant. I'm also hard headed in that anyone I know who wouldn't want to deal with me because of an illness can move on. Whether its because experience makes them sensitive to it, or they can't be arsed with the hassle, either way that's their choice and not mine.

Who you talk to and how are up to you. But I would always say talk to someone. It can only help.

Well done for being open about this, and you've always got support here if you need it.
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mike dolbear
Administrator

2419 Posts

Posted - 09/05/2017 :  09:25:54  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by fatty

Thanks Murphster. My Fatty name came from harsh brotherly banter. Ive been called far worse so don't worry mate.

Oh and BTW. It hasn't helped me being a lifelong Leyton Orient supporter either and their worst season in 136 years!!!

But all joking aside what really brought it all home was a chat with a counsellor. Our first conversation he wanted to know i wasn't planning on taking my own life. That really choked me up that so many people get to that stage that its so unbearable. But won't worry I'm planning on sticking around :)



Being a current Leyton Orient supporter is really the main problem LOL

On a serious note, so many musicians I know suffer or have over the years including myself when I first moved into London 30 years ago and things just didn't go to plan, didn't know what it was then.

1 in 4 people suffer from this in the UK and I am a firm believer that exercise helps in this (but I am not an expert), if you didn't watch the BBC 1 documentary about the 10 people with various mental health issues who started working towards the London marathon (sorry I cant remember the name of the show) then it's a must.

Thank you for coming onto this forum and sharing and hopefully you can get some help from it but also maybe helping others here with your story.

BTW - this is what I love about all of you on this forum how you feel you can come on hear and talk and there are people that will listen and hopefully help.

It's my website/forum so behave yourself's !

Started November 2000
New Mike Dolbear Web Show https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLAGa_4MF8-VD8gvSKB6EcbifVLsl0Saf1
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mike dolbear
Administrator

2419 Posts

Posted - 09/05/2017 :  09:29:00  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Mind over marathon is the program I was talking about http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p04yy0f1

It's my website/forum so behave yourself's !

Started November 2000
New Mike Dolbear Web Show https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLAGa_4MF8-VD8gvSKB6EcbifVLsl0Saf1
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Booma
Advanced Contributer

United Kingdom
362 Posts

Posted - 09/05/2017 :  20:13:56  Show Profile  Visit Booma's Homepage  Reply with Quote
....good point about the forum from Mike above which links to the other thread about potential use of facebook. Without wishing to hijack Fatty's thread just wanted to second Mike's sentiments and add that I think people do feel it's a safe place because I see little evidence of egos and self-promotion that I see on other sites.

www.bluescalepublishing.co.uk
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sticksman1
Advanced Contributer

United Kingdom
1301 Posts

Posted - 10/05/2017 :  10:10:51  Show Profile  Visit sticksman1's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Thank you Fatty for highlighting this here, and for MB for pointing to the BBC programmes.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy helped me through depression and my anxiety attacks. The McGuire Method also helped me with my stammering, which got progressively worse during my depression.

CBT may help you Fatty, as it did me. Worth thinking about.

http://www.myspace.com/terryarnett
http://www.oilcitykings.com/
https://www.facebook.com/Mellotronanism
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martydrums
Advanced Contributer

United Kingdom
7639 Posts

Posted - 10/05/2017 :  12:52:29  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Respect for sharing this stuff about yourself Fatty (and the others who have too).

The fact that you feel able to share this info about yourself is a sign of strength in itself (IMHO). I'm no expert on this kind of stuff but I'd say that stress and depression are two different animals. Being stressed at times of feeling depressed at some point is common to most anyone that is human (like Kev says).

I'd say the stuff that Blunders has been generously and frankly sharing relates primarily to stress, stage fright and maybe lack of self confidence in a given (tough) situation.

Well done on loosing the spare tyre fatty; I could sure do with some of that myself!

I had an experience recently with a great friend (been friends for over 35 years) told me that he had been suffering with bouts of depression over the last year or two. He'd only told his doctor and partner so far. I felt quite honoured that he had chosen to share this info with me. I did not offer much in the way of advice as such but was happy to listen. He really appreciated this and said he's felt a bit better since being able to share this with me.


Official Sugar Daddy of the forum's Sonor Delite appreciation society, as nominated by Jamoca - Honorary President Paul Brook

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Captain Bubble
Advanced Contributer

United Kingdom
19675 Posts

Posted - 11/05/2017 :  07:54:38  Show Profile  Visit Captain Bubble's Homepage  Reply with Quote
I remember an old saying, something like "A problem shared is a problem halved". Makes sense!

Marcus de Mowbray
www.330studios.co.uk/marcus
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kruppers
Excellent Contributer

United Kingdom
201 Posts

Posted - 13/05/2017 :  08:58:40  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hey - never be afraid to talk about depression. It is an illness like any other. I've suffered with it for years. Some days you just wake up and despite having a ton of things to that you want to do, you cant. Its just crap and there is nothing you can do to change it.

Like any other illness, you need to see a Doctor and get help. This may be talking therapy and or drugs. Don't let anyone tell you that you shouldn't take drugs. It's the equivalent of telling someone with diabetes not to take insulin when they need it.

And, glad you have lost weight! Stop calling yourself Fatty. Definitely need to be kind to yourself.

C&C, Meinl, Beard
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fatty
Advanced Contributer

United Kingdom
399 Posts

Posted - 17/05/2017 :  13:20:51  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Thank you all for your contributions. Great to share.

I found the medication to be a big help although I'm slowly coming off it now. Im on citralopram. I was one of the those who initially insisted on not going near pills but came round to it and its certainly taken the edge off.
Ive found it a very deep experience and feel it goes beyond just the biochemistry of my brain and looking more at my attitude to life. The brain being the television set of the soul which is just playing up at the moment and got the repair man sorting it i.e. Doctor.

Some good help strategies there and yes i agree Mike exercise deff helps. Im more of a gym bunny and the camaraderie down there is another bonus.

Its hard to pinpoint what I think is the root cause. Its very hard getting to the bottom of your subconscious, prob impossible. My job definitely hasn't helped. Im a self employed consultant in the Construction industry and it can be very stressful and an adversarial place. Always trying to cover yourself. Im now seriously thinking of leaving the profession in the coming year to less salary but a more enjoyable life. That thought in itself is making me feel better so that leads me to think my job is a major factor.

Would be interesting to hear other peoples experiences of their work situation causing depression. Mike - can you elaborate more on your situation earlier in your career?
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mike dolbear
Administrator

2419 Posts

Posted - 18/05/2017 :  13:17:59  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
quote:
Originally posted by fatty

Thank you all for your contributions. Great to share.

Some good help strategies there and yes i agree Mike exercise deff helps. Im more of a gym bunny and the camaraderie down there is another bonus.

Its hard to pinpoint what I think is the root cause. Its very hard getting to the bottom of your subconscious, prob impossible. My job definitely hasn't helped. Im a self employed consultant in the Construction industry and it can be very stressful and an adversarial place. Always trying to cover yourself. Im now seriously thinking of leaving the profession in the coming year to less salary but a more enjoyable life. That thought in itself is making me feel better so that leads me to think my job is a major factor.

Would be interesting to hear other peoples experiences of their work situation causing depression. Mike - can you elaborate more on your situation earlier in your career?



Mine was something that i didn't know what or why at the time and it was only later talking to other musician friends that i realised what it was and i now use as part of my teaching practice.

I come from a generation off "man up" so didn't share my problems which was very wrong.

I started getting very good gigs even back when I was at school in Brighton and by the time I was 23 was doing all the local gigs, had toured with pop bands and recorded TV stuff and a few records and so thought it was time to move to London as i was going to be a star
I broke up from a long term childhood relationship as i didn't need any distractions, said goodbye to my family and moved to London and into a drummer pals place.

I got a few gigs and went for loads of auditions and always came close etc etc BUT had to get a normal job to pay the bills. It was during a 2 year window that things just got bad for me. I was fitting windows during the day and trying to gig with bands that to be honest were going nowhere in the evenings. First sign was just feeling down about everything and not motivated, then everything in my daily routine at the time (fitting windows,playing drums) became harder and was making to many mistakes. Then emotionally started breaking down and crying for no really reason.

During all of this time i just kept thinking i needed to "man up" its just the struggles off life !

For me the turning point was I turned a corner and got a good gig in London (6 nights a week playing the Talk of london), one that I didn't need to fit windows (badly by now) anymore and i started to get some confidence in myself again.

As I have said before I know a lot of musicians that suffer or have over the years and the best lesson i have learnt is that WE ARE NOT ALONE and WE MUST TALK ABOUT THIS.

Exercise has always been a big part of my life and even now when things get stressful a good run or gym session really helps me.

I dont talk about my issues on this site as this site is not about me (it just has my name on it as i never throughout it would ever get this big).

It's my website/forum so behave yourself's !

Started November 2000
New Mike Dolbear Web Show https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLAGa_4MF8-VD8gvSKB6EcbifVLsl0Saf1
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sticksman1
Advanced Contributer

United Kingdom
1301 Posts

Posted - 19/05/2017 :  12:53:47  Show Profile  Visit sticksman1's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Amen Mike, and thankful for forums such as this... the drumming community is a rather special one.

Thank you Mr. Surveyor Man for bringing this to the forum forefront - keep it up!

http://www.myspace.com/terryarnett
http://www.oilcitykings.com/
https://www.facebook.com/Mellotronanism
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Booma
Advanced Contributer

United Kingdom
362 Posts

Posted - 21/05/2017 :  19:19:26  Show Profile  Visit Booma's Homepage  Reply with Quote
Hi fatty,

Good to hear you feel you've made some progress. Interesting to read you're in construction and find some interactions confrontational. I've only had to deal with constructors in a domestic/home situation (extensions/driveways etc.) but have often found them to start relationships, even with prospective customers, as if someone is trying to con them - it doesn't make for an effective relationship - so I'll go out of my way to find someone I can work with, though it may cost a bit more. Obviously I don't know you, but it wouldn't be surprising if you're in confrontational situation as the norm to start feeling all sorts of stress and anxiety especially if you're one of the good guys - which, as you're a drummer and you're on the forum I'm going to assume you are! If you are thinking of a change of direction that's a great way to get some control back or, and I don't know if this is possible, are you able to be more particular in your choices of who you work with? Though I appreciate that's not easy when it comes to contracts.

Anyway, do keep coming back on here and letting us know how you're getting on.

www.bluescalepublishing.co.uk
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Booma
Advanced Contributer

United Kingdom
362 Posts

Posted - 21/05/2017 :  22:23:08  Show Profile  Visit Booma's Homepage  Reply with Quote
PS - no offence intended above to those in construction - it's just my experience....

www.bluescalepublishing.co.uk
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thedrumcrew
Advanced Contributer

United Kingdom
9725 Posts

Posted - 01/06/2017 :  07:35:12  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
I would love to know what it is and do I have it
My life at the moment is like saying omg
After 19 years with fiona we are calling it a day we still love each other but more brother and sister so I need to move out
Friday I will be gone ???

Scary got bit of money together then needed to spend 700 on van mot 2 weeks ago so back working again and then the big end went so van is now scrap

Got a new van 2 days ago and been doing that up making sure it's ok so first day back to work earning money the suns out I have to smile there nothing else I can do




I cannot look to the future it's scary me to much ?

Think I just get bad luck ? I don't mind that

Thinking of the future as others close there eyes and hope http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bKaJ4b0XYmI

Memories are some of lifes most wonderful treasures.
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rollingthunder
Advanced Contributer

United Kingdom
2492 Posts

Posted - 01/06/2017 :  09:49:37  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
TM changed my life.
In fact it saved my life.
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CraigDrums
Advanced Contributer

United Kingdom
1815 Posts

Posted - 09/06/2017 :  08:42:45  Show Profile  Reply with Quote
Hey Fatty

I'm glad that my blogs helped a bit. When I first opened up about my story from about 10 years ago and what I went through, it was one of the hardest things I'd ever done, putting myself out there, feeling vulnerable. But over time I spoke to more and more people about it, I wasn't in the minority. The truth is, it's only a taboo subject as it's not widely talked about because people feel ashamed, awkward and like they are failing, you're not. Talking is always the best way with likeminded people who've been there and got the tshirt. I'm out the other side for the most part but it's a subject that is rife within the industry, more than you'll ever know

If you need to talk, drop me a line through my website and I'd be delighted to help or share what I learned
Best wishes
Craig Blundell
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