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Geoff’s Story

“You are the most important person in your life!”

Share your stigma experience.

I’ve had depression and anxiety since I was young, but was never diagnosed. I was raised a very conservative son of a christian pastor. Short version I wasn’t raised to understand emotional regulation. “Be happy or you’re not right with the big man and that makes me angry.”
After multiple deaths, including my mother at 16, a divorce, job issues, cancer and a miscarriage, I had learned to bottle things up pretty well. I was never one for conflict and lived my life according to others standards leading to never knowing who I truly was. 20+ years of anger issues and not understanding why I felt the way I did, I had a breakdown.

I work from home at a career that I hate due to falling into it and not having the education for. I spend a lot of time making it look like I know what I’m doing and hoping I get laid off. But I can’t leave because I have no idea what I would want to do or how to get into doing what I would like. Plus we just had a kid and we can’t take the cut or loose benefits. I crumbled! When my son screamed at all….I would remind myself of how small and innocent he was. How he’s in a new world and it’s scary! I would do my best to soothe him, but this rage would come over me. I’d check out for a couple seconds and come to holding him too tight or out in front of me. The shame made it worse. I didn’t have anyone to talk to. We had only lived in our state a couple years and the friends we had weren’t close and didn’t have nor wanted kids. I couldn’t tell my wife because I thought she’d be afraid.
One day I told her I was going on a weekend trip and headed out with no intention to return. One last time in the mountains would be a good finale.

This was 3 months ago and I’ve since checked myself in and have been diagnosed with Severe Depression, Anxiety Disorders, PTSD (abuse), and long term undiagnosed ADHD. I’ve gone through some programs and continue with weekly therapy. I’m learning who I am and the things I need to have a better life. Things are still hard, adjusting to medication and life changes, but it’s the right direction. Most importantly I can hold my son with no fear of harming or scaring him. He’s 8 months now and all three of us are happier than I could have imagined!

How did you overcome this experience?

The Hilarious World Of Depression podcast took away the fear of recognizing I have depression. To stop and recognize I don’t have die because I’m not alone! It gave me the information I needed to know what steps to take. I knew not to fear getting help and checking in. Truly, it helped Me save My life! I’m still working at it, but I’m starting to see the light at the end of the tunnel. The very long tunnel.

Help others by sharing a brief, positive message.

You are the most important person in your life!

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