My name is Roger and I am at a situation now in my life that I have to cry out for help due a long life of depression and mental illness.
Speaking about my situation is very difficult and I’m scared of the stigma surrounding mental illness. My experiences in the past had led me to keep my feelings to myself, which I had been doing much of my life. It takes a significant amount of trust for me to talk about myself even with my doctors and therapist..
I have depression and anxiety and I often lay at home on the couch staring at the ceiling and just think, my mind races with dark sad thoughts, and I can’t stop them. I cry a lot and EVERY day I think of ending my life. I have had this illness my entire life, but it wasn’t until later in life that I started to address it. This illness has caused me to be medically discharged from the military, contributed to the dissolution of a fifteen year marriage, and on two occasions resulted with inpatient admissions to mental health facilities.
I had been employed at a University for several years but I could tell I was becoming more and more withdrawn from my fellow employees and couldn’t maintain any focus or concentration in my duties. I felt it was inevitable that I would lose my position and tried to take another position elsewhere, this resulted in me having an extreme panic attack that inevitably led to my dismissal because of unauthorized absences. I took a small cleaning job at a bank after hours but even that was causing me to become anxious and afraid because I would have to leave home. My depression has changed my life. It’s an awful thing to experience, as it has impacted my relationships, friendships, how I act, how I think and how I interact with others. There are some days that are worse than others and on the “good days” I am always afraid of when those feelings will resurface because it is a constant battle to appear normal. I only leave my home unless absolutely necessary for groceries, emergencies or visiting my aunt who is confined to a nursing home. Visitation with my Aunt helped with my anxiety and made me feel more relaxed but now due to the pandemic they have ceased all visitation and I believe I will never again get to hold her before she passes. I never wanted to be in a situation as I am now, I had hoped to have a career in the military or law enforcement but this illness has denied me any chance of that. Under the advice of my family, therapist and Doctor I have applied for disability in order to survive. I have exhausted all of my financial resources for this time consuming process and have had to borrow money from family and friends just to survive this far. I have had to apply for public assistance and this goes against all of my beliefs. My utility bills are overdue, my mortgage is in arrears and my transportation is failing. I have exhausted all of my resources and find myself on the verge of losing everything. My home is my “safe place” where I feel some sense of normalcy with my aging and loyal dogs, and my other animals. From always being employed, self sufficient, and self reliant for the last 35 years I find myself begging for enough assistance to carry me through the next few months to care for my animals and maintain my home while I wait through a very humbling experience.
Roger J Hall