Depressed in maryland

I retired from teaching, after 32 years, three years ago this year and have been dealing with depression from retirement. I was always a healthy vibrant person. My wife and I (30 yrs) three college educated children have been supportive during this time. I have worked a number of jobs but am always unsatisfied with my efforts.

Finally in the Spring of 2011, I was prescribed several medications before Cymbalta was prescribed and it seemed to work. I also went to therapy for 6 months while on the medication. I stopped in Sept.2011 because I felt good and all was well until two months ago.

The depression surfaced and I am stumbling downward again. I started on Cymbalta this week and am struggling daily with the effect of the drug. I had success with this last year so I am thinking this is an adjustment to the drug.

However, I want to look forward to the day that I will be able to enjoy this adjustment stage of my life. My wife is working two more years but I still must learn to become engaged in other endeavors. I have no hobbies but enjoy working with people however I am so empty and I do not want to feel hopeless forever.

I am currently in therapy again.

Wendy: So many retirees have "been there and done that" before you. What happens with meds is something that happens over and over... my sisters ex needed meds for a "hormone imbalance" which gave him deep depression. He'd take meds for weeks, maybe months, and then quit -- assuming he is fine now. Then he spirals back down now...

Take the meds, feel better, and concentrate on where you want to be headed in life. Volunteer? Work part time? Start a blog and write to the world on a topic you used to teach? Take Action -- who are you in retirement??

Sending prayers your way!

Comments for Depressed in maryland

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Talk to me
by: Mark also in Maryland

I am bipolar. I lived through clinical depression no less than six different times between 1978 and 2005, sometimes mild but most often severe and debilitating.

When I finally realized the meds would take four to six weeks to re-balance my brain chemistry I made the decision to become proactive in my own treatment.

Two activities worked for me: first, every day I forced myself to take a walk outside. I hate walking, but I walked. Only five or ten minutes to start but the effect was cumulative.

Second, every day I forced myself to read. Reading is my passion but during bouts of severe depression my concentration was non-existent and reading was impossible. No matter. I started with one page of a favorite book, then two pages, then four pages, then a WHOLE CHAPTER!

All during this time the meds are working their magic, the endorphins from the physical exercise are helping tremendously, and the reading is getting easier and more pleasurable every day.

So HANG IN THERE, pick a physical, outdoor activity and a mental, indoor activity and JUST DO IT!

If you need help or just want to talk, email me at mwheckler at I have survived three heart attacks, a quadruple bypass and two involuntary hospitalizations in psychiatric wards, but I didn't do it alone, and you are not alone either.

Children Are Our Future and You Are Their Only Hope!
by: Anonymous

Children are the future and you are their only hope!

Since you were a teacher you must have love for children. I suggest you do volunteer work at schools, day cares and such. I am retired and I was a pre-school teacher. I did not work with children for a year and found that is where my heart was and still is.

I am 73 years old and I am a nanny for four wonderful children. The love they give me each day and the satisfaction of being an influence in such young lives is so very rewarding. I cherish each day and look forward to each day with love and enthusiasm.

Try it and see how you feel. Good luck.

Lou Mueller

by: Vivian

I to have "been there and done that". When I retired st 59 1/2 (bad back) I did not know what to do.

I find in voluntering for different charities it helps one feel much better and USEFUL too.

I never got into any meds to help me adjust from working 2 jobs st once (for 35 years) to not working at all. I just tried to stay busy. As soon as I retired my body began to act up. It was one thing after another.(lOL)

But it will get better for you my friend. Try to find things to do every day.

I dabble in photography. Always loved taking photos all my life. I have almost as many cameras as I do clothes(lol lOL) But it is something that keeps me busy. I make the photos from start to printing them.

So I pray you will find a good hobby and succeed at it, You will be happier then.


Be careful
by: Jon K

Be careful of the anti depressant racket. Studies I have seen report that all of those meds, net net, do more harm than good

Fight Depression.
by: Antoinette

Most important, keep busy. I have gone your route. I have found that volunteering is very rewarding. Suggestion: Find out if you have any Olympians in your city. These young people need a lot of support and encouragement. To talk and communicate with young people is very rewarding and doing so on your own time and not as a teacher but as a friend and mentor is great.

You still have a lot to be thankful for, you are not alone like so many people are. Count your blessings every day. The Olympics will be soon and the U.S.A. will have a large representation.

Good Luck, Antoinette.

Dear Depressed
by: Lynne Gessner

As Wendy said,I'd been there and done that. Having nothing to do really can make you feel down.

I had been a writer for 40 years, and had sold books, and won awards for them, but once I had a stroke, I couldn't seem to write. I went to the bottom in depression.

Then my two daughters suggested I write the family history, since I'm the only one old enough to remember back far enough. I'll be 93 next month. Reluctantly I agreed, and I found after awhile that I could manage a memoir because I didn't have to create characters or come up with plots. That kept me busy for 5 years. Then I ran dry.

Since I seemed to be able to write non-fiction, I decided to write an instruction book on writing. I had taught writing at a community college for 16 years and many of my students learned to write AND SELL their books. I have just finished the book but I keep working on it, trying to improve it.

My suggestion for you - though you didn't ask for it - is to write a book about teaching, not an instructional one, but just an interesting story of what it is like to teach. Think back to the many incidents that happened, and make it humorous if you can.

Just thinking back and DOING SOMETHING ABOUT IT can help drive away your depression. It works - truly.

Best regards, Lynne Gessner

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