Only recently found this board, so pardon me if I'm bringing up anew something that's already been discussed to death in the past. I read through some of the old posts, but my failing concentration precludes a thorough examination of the board's history.
It seems there are several others here who, like me, have been chronically depressed for years. I've got the whole dysthemic thing going on all the time, with an average of three severe bouts a year thrown in as a sort of unholy bonus. Been this way since my early teens, for nearly twenty years now. I've done (and stopped) the self-mutilation and suicide attempts (I'm really bad at suicide), countless drugs & combos, a dozen shrinks...by now I've learned enough about my condition to be able to live through it, although I can't always function. I do what I can and must to get by, and have learned to accept that the occasional job or relationship will be lost to the beast.
What I don't know anymore is: what's on the other side? What is it like to be happy? When people talk about things they "enjoy" or people they "love", what do they mean? For me, things either "are" or "aren't". If I have a plate of food in front of me, the food "is", but that's all. I don't quite understand when people get excited about the same food being "good" or "bad", don't know what that means. Is pleasure simply the absence of pain (and vice versa) or is it something more? I can *almost* grasp aesthetic beauty sometimes, but that budding subjectivism is quickly eradicated by the knowledge that nothing, upon examination, really means anything anyway. So I plow through this existence surrounded by objects and situations that simply don't have meaning or value...I don't even remember the last time I really *felt* anything, except the horrifying despair that accompanies and defines the melancholia.
What is happiness? I ask to those of you who know it. What is pleasure, desire, ambition, confidence, love? What are these things, and what brings them to you?
Welcome to this board, we are always happy to see a new person here. Misery loves company you know.
Interesting questions you have there. You kinda said the same thing that I have said except that I used to say it a lot quicker and shorter by saying "I just don't give a **** anymore".
I have been sick in the head and heart since 1966 but believe it or not I did'nt really know it or if I suspected subconciously that I was, I disbelieved it. It took a series of events in 1994 to bring it all to a head where I just fell in the pit and did'nt want out. My latest doc has finally convinced me that I have that tenious condition called PTSD. You know the ol' "something bad type trama happened and it really screwed you up type condiiton"
I thought I was "happy" and "enjoyed" life and was "well adjusted" but looking back at some of my problems and things that happened and situations I understand now that I really was not all those things at all.
I think I can understand that now, because I am getting better, I am getting out of the pit and I am starting to know how to enjoy and be pleased with things and love myself and not to cause myself and anyone else pain or hurt.
"Is the day beautiful"? the blind man asked,
"Yes indeed it is" the other blind man answered.
Thanks for the welcome. You're right, your phrasing is much more succinct. <IMG SRC="http://www.healthboards.com/ubb/wink.gif"> And it's really good to hear from another long-termer who's finding out how to get back into the world of the living. It's all too easy sometimes to resign myself to the idea that this is all I get in terms of happiness, that I've used up my little portion and now I just trudge on as far as I can without it. Hope is hard to come by. Your post gives me some. Appreciate it.
Hey Behind you,
We can be frightened that the "good days" are over and that things are just going to get worse or in some way be disappointing. We can do that even without being ill from depression. But, when you are depressed it seems just too real and too frightening.
I kinda get the idea that you are a very smart person,(I read your reply to Bubble) just a few minutes ago. You gave her some great ideas and your thoughts were very good.
(I of course, had to stick my quarters worth in).
We have had a few problems here lately but all in all the board is becoming a place for people to help and be with each other. You know, a place that everyone can come when they want or feel the need to. I hope you will find the board helpful.
Anyway, Thanks being here and for sharing.