sharing something my son said during FS..

rebelson

Active Member
He said this last month while I was down there for Family Session. It was on a 10 minute 'break' that the addict therapist/session moderator gave us.

We went out a side door so he could smoke a cigarette with another peer (he was 21) who was in the residential facility with him, and his sweet mom was also there, for FS.

My son brought up how easy it is to 'find yourself in a mental hole or pit'. Quickly, they both were sharing stories of their own personal experiences of 'being down in the hole'. They agreed that negative or certain 'music', (Slayer is one example:devilish:, it's awful, awful!) can facilitate sending them there and also that if down in the hole, that that same music can help to 'keep' them there.

They said if they find themselves 'falling in to the ditch', if they do not attempt to get out very quickly, they will get sucked down further. Quickly. They said that if they do not have the motivation or desire to 'get out', they can easily get 'stuck' there. The other guy said that when he relapses, it's due to being stuck down in the hole and unable to get out.

They both agreed that it can become very 'comfortable' down in this hole, to where they do not even want or care to 'get out'. So they stay for awhile. I would think it's because it's an 'escape' from all reality. A cop-out to life. I think we could equate this 'hole' with 'depression'.

I do not know how this hole feels, I am not a person who's really ever been depressed other than during my last pregnancy, for a little bit. But, it lifted quickly.

I would think it would be hard to get out of the hole, once comfortable there. Especially if using drugs, drinking, weed or taking benzos.

My input at the time, was that whenever they 'felt themselves sinking, that they needed to do something to keep them busy, fill up their schedule, preoccupy their minds, listen to upbeat music'. To keep as far away from that hole as possible. I also took that opportunity to reiterate to my son, while the other 21yo was there admitting that music contributed to the negative feeling/falling in to the hole, why, for the past several years, I have been on and off begging him to STOP listening to that crap! Slayer, Korn, etc. UGH! :eek::eek::eek: The lyrics in and of themselves are just full of anger, negativity and downer.

Any thoughts on this? I think many addicts would agree with my son's verbiage about this elusive (to me) 'hole' which sucks them in, and then keeps them stuck for days, months, years....

It was very interesting hearing them describe this experience. It also made me sad for them.
 
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ForeverSpring

Well-Known Member
I have suffered severe depression since age 13. I fight it with all I have including medication (not street drugs) and therapy. At 20 I was a depressed mess, but refused to make it even worse. I got better after finding the right medication combo, continuing therapy, learning how to be good to me and accept myself and I don't get into that hole anymore. If I quit therapy, medications and did street drugs I'd still be a disaster.

I know about the sheer hell of clinical depression. I also know it is treatable and that pot, meth, and heroin aren't the answer. Until the drugs are stopped and treatment for depression IS accepted, it is hard to get better. You can't just tell yourself to cheer up. Depression is a clinical disorder.
 

Praecepta

Active Member
I am NOT an addict and am a happy person. FYI - I like "upbeat" music. Here are my favorite songs (listening to these makes me feel happy!)...

Another Night
Believe
Bicycle Race
Billy Elliot Boogie
Billy Elliot London Calling
Billy Elliot Town Called Malice
Boogie Wonderland
Chiquitita
Dancing with Myself
Every Little Thing
Everybody Have Fun Tonight
From a Jack to a King
Goodbye Yellow Brick Road
Gypsies, Tramps and Thieves
Half-Breed
Honey, I'm Home
Hot Child in the City
Hot Stuff
I Love the Nightlife
I Never Promised You a Rose Garden
I Want It That Way
It's Raining Men
Kodachrome
Livin' la Vida Loca
Major Tom
Mambo, No. 5
Man I Feel Like a Woman
Me and Julio Down by the Schoolyard
Mr. Roboto
Only in America
Ooh Boy
Opportunities (Let's Make Lots of Money)
Pinball Wizard The Who
Rock Lobster
Rock Me
Rocket Man
Runaway
School's Out
She's In Love With The Boy
Tennessee Flat Top Box
Tennessee River Run
Unbelievable
Wasted on the Way
Waterloo
Western Union
When You Left Me Lonely Here
White dove
You're My Best Friend
Alone Again (Naturally)
 

slsh

member since 1999
Rebelson - Really interesting that your son and his friend referred to it as the "hole or pit." My challenging kid and I have called it the hole for years. We each have triggers (PTSD kind of stuff), but we also have that darned depression that comes for no reason whatsoever. And it can be one deep dark hole.

Your son's comments are actually encouraging to me. I'm a big believer in cognitive behavioral therapy for my own depression - basically self-care, recognizing the signs of falling down the hole and being proactive in trying to stop the descent. I've found that it takes work (a LOT of work sometimes) and also practice to make CBT work for you, but I think being aware of the beginnings of the descent into the dark hole is a huge step. I do understand the concept of being comfortable in the hole... not sure I'd use "comfortable", but sometimes it's impossible to not hit bottom - you just get pulled all the way down. I've never been an addict (though possibly loved my scotch a bit too much in my younger years), but I'd guess the challenge would be to find other ways to alleviate the pain of being down there.

Personally, I don't find that music negatively affects my mood - sometimes though it is a reflection of my mood. It also can be something to sooth me, or take me back in time or to a different place - I have a very sensory reaction to music, can remember when and where I first heard a song, can smell my new steam curling iron (circa 1975) or apricot facial mask with certain songs (like "Radar Love" by Golden Earring, for example) or taste the ice cream I used to get when I was 12 and Elton John's Brown Dirt Cowboy was playing. Slayer and Korn and Eminem, etc., have been played by this old woman, LOL, as well as some of the heavier metal bands (I still can't get into my challenging kid's death metal stuff - incoherent screaming just doesn't do it for me). But I also love Dan Fogelberg and James Taylor and Dave Matthews. My kid has an even wider repertoire - from death metal (roarrrrrrr roarrrrr roarrrr) to classical. His musical selection in the shower gives me a hint as to his state of mind on any given day.

I've been reading a blogger (Jenny Lawson, aka The Bloggess) who deals with depression and anxiety and some other stuff. I love her phrase: Depression lies. All that negative self-talk I do when I'm in the hole, it's all lies. Learning to filter out the lies... it's really hard to do, but when I'm falling I do remind myself that that dang depression lies like a rug.

Glad your son was able to share with you so eloquently.
 

pigless in VA

Well-Known Member
slsh explained what I was thinking very well. When I am in the "hole" and depression is telling me lie after lie, I use the music to release my negative thoughts. Depression is anger turned inward. The music helps me to turn it back outward again. I also think doing something physical helps, particularly for young men.
 

ForeverSpring

Well-Known Member
Depression is often a medical brain disorder and changing your focus or thinking won't change what is called clinical depression. It is highly treatable for some.

As one who experienced that deep pit of hell, as I called it, mild depression can sometimes be treated with exercise and therapy. Severe depression usually requires medical intervention.

I can't imagine listening to deep, dark music when in "the pit." But to each, his own.
 

DarkwingPsyduck

Active Member
He said this last month while I was down there for Family Session. It was on a 10 minute 'break' that the addict therapist/session moderator gave us.

We went out a side door so he could smoke a cigarette with another peer (he was 21) who was in the residential facility with him, and his sweet mom was also there, for FS.

My son brought up how easy it is to 'find yourself in a mental hole or pit'. Quickly, they both were sharing stories of their own personal experiences of 'being down in the hole'. They agreed that negative or certain 'music', (Slayer is one example:devilish:, it's awful, awful!) can facilitate sending them there and also that if down in the hole, that that same music can help to 'keep' them there.

They said if they find themselves 'falling in to the ditch', if they do not attempt to get out very quickly, they will get sucked down further. Quickly. They said that if they do not have the motivation or desire to 'get out', they can easily get 'stuck' there. The other guy said that when he relapses, it's due to being stuck down in the hole and unable to get out.

They both agreed that it can become very 'comfortable' down in this hole, to where they do not even want or care to 'get out'. So they stay for awhile. I would think it's because it's an 'escape' from all reality. A cop-out to life. I think we could equate this 'hole' with 'depression'.

I do not know how this hole feels, I am not a person who's really ever been depressed other than during my last pregnancy, for a little bit. But, it lifted quickly.

I would think it would be hard to get out of the hole, once comfortable there. Especially if using drugs, drinking, weed or taking benzos.

My input at the time, was that whenever they 'felt themselves sinking, that they needed to do something to keep them busy, fill up their schedule, preoccupy their minds, listen to upbeat music'. To keep as far away from that hole as possible. I also took that opportunity to reiterate to my son, while the other 21yo was there admitting that music contributed to the negative feeling/falling in to the hole, why, for the past several years, I have been on and off begging him to STOP listening to that crap! Slayer, Korn, etc. UGH! :eek::eek::eek: The lyrics in and of themselves are just full of anger, negativity and downer.

Any thoughts on this? I think many addicts would agree with my son's verbiage about this elusive (to me) 'hole' which sucks them in, and then keeps them stuck for days, months, years....

It was very interesting hearing them describe this experience. It also made me sad for them.

Clinical depression is a crippling experience. It is different than just being sad due to an event or circumstance. It's the inability to feel anything remotely positive. Like humorous, happy, excited, proud, etc. I have suffered from it since my teen years. It only gets worse with addiction, but recovery doesn't actually make it go away. While I have many less bad days since getting clean, I still have some awful ones. Where I cannot find a reason to get out of my bed. Where I am literally looking at the clock and counting down the hours until I can go back to bed. The only thing I look forward to is being unconscious. It is a lonely, helpless feeling.

I have also developed mild agoraphobia. Which is not at all like me. I think it comes from cutting off ties with the only friends that I had in order to get clean. I have gotten used to just being alone. When the prospect of interacting with other people arises, I get incredibly anxious. I hide in my room. My aunt always thinks it is personal, but it isn't. I don't interact with anybody, not just her. Then there are times where I feel up and good, and make plans with other people to get out. If it takes any longer than an hour or so before heading out, I fall back into the anxiety about it, and cancel. So I am VERY flaky. Now I just don't try to make plans. I just sorta go when I feel up to it, and hope others are free.

Dunno.. Very difficult thing to adequately describe.
 

ForeverSpring

Well-Known Member
I also had severe clinical depression since my teen years. I have no idea how anything can make it worse. You described it well.

On top of that I had several anxiety disorders and a time where I sort of had agoraphobia because I was afraid of having a panic attack in public.
 

InsaneCdn

Well-Known Member
I think it comes from cutting off ties with the only friends that I had in order to get clean. I have gotten used to just being alone. When the prospect of interacting with other people arises, I get incredibly anxious
Not only were your friends all users. The rules of interaction are very specific to that group of people. They also have the drugs as a "crutch". Being clean? No crutch, and a different set of rules. That is NOT depression. That's a very realistic take on how much risk there is in human interaction.

You don't need to stay there... all alone. But it is quite a process to gain exposure in quantities you can handle while you build a whole new skill set.
 
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