Beyond Blue

Beyond Blue


The Beyond Blue Community: A Circle of Friends

posted by Beyond Blue

I’m really excited about Beliefnet Community, which launched two weeks ago, because it gives the community of Beyond Blue all kinds of possibilities to grow and deepen. When I wrote in my last post that many of my supportive friendships have been born online, I was referring to lots of Beyond Blue readers that I correspond with regularly. The Beliefnet Community allows us to take our circle of support a few steps further by hosting book groups (ones with CliffsNotes would be appreciated by me), journaling exercises, podcasts (tape yourself and let us hear you), video posts (not just me anymore!). Basically the community will allow Beyond Blue to be more reader-directed instead of me-directed. I hope to be there to host discussions, and direct a journaling session and things like that. But it’s a wonderful way for us to provide even more support to one another, just as we would if we were sitting down together at a DRADA (Depression and Related Affective Disorders) meeting drinking really bad coffee.
So, by clicking here, you’ll be directed to the Beliefnet Community homepage. Then set up a profile. Provide as much or little of your personal information as you want. For example, you can find my page at http://community.beliefnet.com/thereseborchard. You’ll find that I now have 23 friends! I belong to two groups: How to Stress Less, and Christian Book Club (please don’t make me read “Left Behind”).


This is a big step from last week, when I had 0 friends. It felt like fifth grade all over again. Then I thought of a plan. I respect my editor, Holly Rossi, very much. In my opinion, she exercises very good judgment (whenever I go off … way off … she has the nicest way of saying … “hmmm, let’s hold this one for awhile”). So I decided to go through her list of friends, and ask them to become mine—the same thing I did with my sister-in-law to get local friends. It worked! Poof! I instantly became prom-queen material!
Once you set up your profile, request me to be a friend and I will accept. I already have two Beyond Blue friends. Go ahead guess. I bet you can figure out who they are. Just think for a moment. Yep! Larry and Wisdum!
If you experience technical problems, I probably won’t be able to help you, but leave a comment on this message board, and I’ll forward it to someone who can help you.
See you there!



Advertisement
Comments read comments(16)
post a comment
Larry Parker

posted October 25, 2007 at 6:12 pm


Here’s both a response to Therese’s (fun) post and to the Black Hole I’ve been in the last week (and I’m still pretty far down there, though at least not at the absolute bottom, I don’t think, any more).
On the general Beliefnet discussion boards, I have about 20 friends so far, and I’m sure I’ll pick up more. But not all of those friends are people I agree with — many are folks I disagree with, even 95% of the time. And I’m even more argumentative on there than I sometimes am here on BB. (Sigh.)
So why are we “friends”? Because we do it in a spirit of tough love, of genuinely trying to educate each other, of trying to lessen (if we can’t break through) barriers, to try to identify that the 5% common ground may be the most important 5% of all to agree on — and, if we can’t do any of that, we may still just enjoy each other’s wordplay and sense of humor, and (twisted) view of the world from opposite perspectives.
On the other hand, there are people who I agree with a lot more than 5% of the time ideologically for whom I would hit “do not accept” if they sent me a friendship request (I doubt they would, but …). Some I agree with 95% of the time ideologically, yet we still talk past each other. Why? Because they’re not sardonic (as I am on my good days) or even sarcastic (as I am on my bad ones), but ideologically rigid, humorless and judgmental. They’re Javerts to my and so many others’ Valjeans. Not a good basis for a community, IMHO.
Which brings me back to BB. I truly apologize to any of our BB longtimers — those I generally agree with, those I often disagree with — who feel I have disrupted the community during my recent dance with the Black Dog. (Which isn’t over yet, by a longshot, sad to say.) I have been snappish and growling, yes, but only in trying to deal with my own frustrations. (And it’s not like my combox replies were irrationally manic gibberish; even if you disagree with them, they have always been in the context of Therese’s original posts.)
What’s especially sad is that some of the people who have expressed profound irritation with me and even called me out with negative names are those that, though I rarely agree with them, I DO think I’m coming to understand where **they** are coming from. Whether they believed I was nastier than I realize even now, that I was whining with self-pity (quite possibly — though that’s a fairly inevitable symptom of “the hole”), or otherwise just couldn’t see where **I** was coming from, I can’t say.
And I hope people would also believe that, when newcomers come to BB in crisis or just seeking perspective on this terrible disease — again, to be part of our community — I may “initiate” them, LOL, but ultimately I welcome and, I hope, befriend them too.
That said, I have also seen others recently who are not frustrated-with-Larry BB community builders — with whom I will easily reconsmile, as Wisdum might say, soon enough — but (IMHO) have been in that ideologically rigid, humorless, judgmental mode I see all too often on the Bnet discussion boards. Who would rather divide newcomers and guests from oldtimers to “score a point” than to build a community. Which I genuinely try to do even in my (often annoying, sigh) Socratic way of asking pointed questions to get to larger truths. (Though we all know how Socrates died … maybe that’s not such a good quality in a BB member after all …)
Look, I don’t like it, but I can deal with it when people beat up on me verbally — I’m tough in debate, I admit, but for better or worse that means I can handle myself. Usually even (maybe especially!) when I’m at the lowest of the low.
But when I see comments unfairly beating up on other longtime BB members, to try to tear down what Therese and all of us — if Therese will allow us to pat ourselves on the back, and (((hug))) her in return — are building up … even if it sometimes looks to outsiders more like the Watts Towers than the Petronas Towers and they want to criticize us accordingly … well, that’s my limit.
And I am NOT going to apologize for being upset about that.



report abuse
 

Jim G

posted October 26, 2007 at 2:31 am


There are several reasons we should all not take comments personally here, IMO. The first is electronic communications obviously lacks the non-verbal, and that contributes to a lot of mis-understanding.
Second, we have mental issues. Therefore a large amount of forgiveness should be par for the course particularly in our cuckoo’s nest of a blog. (I mean that as a very mild cuckoo’s nest, nothing like the lockup facility of the movie by the same name, but a cuckoo’s nest nonetheless.) Forgiveness going in both directions, forgiveness of others and forgiveness of ourselves.
Third, in order to be spiritual and/or enlightened, we must rise to the level of “loving the sinner, hating the sin” type of wisdom.
Fourth, honesty counts for something. Therese is very honest and authentic (put that in your kudos file Therese,) and so her blog should follow the same tone.
That said, I would be silly to consider anyone in a blog to be “an enemy,” particularly in this blog. Especially if I am new and don’t have a history of that person. So I for one will try to comment from a clean slate each day.



report abuse
 

recovering1

posted October 26, 2007 at 10:21 am


Your depression related articles have helped me a great deal so far today. When I awoke this a.m., I didn’t want to get out of bed and planned on returning to bed when my 13-yr. old left for school. But I decided to log on and see what new info. I found today. So far I have posted comments several times this morning, drank more than a few cups of coffee and didn’t allow myself to crawl back into bed and the black hole. I feel so much better now and know that today will be better than I thought it would be when my alarm went off at 6:30!



report abuse
 

Margaret Balyeat

posted October 26, 2007 at 11:34 am


I, too, feel that ANY form of written (or phone, for that matter) communications always run the risk of being misunderstood unless you havce a long and detailed history with the other party. Since we eaxh necessarily bring our own perspective/experience to the table, we can’t see objectively, but are even(MORE) consigned to “through a glass darkly” vision than we are in face-to-face communication with people wo have “been through the mill” with us. The upside of that is that we don’t have our BB friends storming our doors to ensure that there isn’t a razor blade lying out on the bathroom counter, a noose hanging from any closet rod or an open bottle of meds beside a glass of water (or bottle of Diet Pepsi in my case) on the bedside table. I can be brutally honest here without worrying if I’m going to hear sobs from someone else who can’t relate to my visits to the abyss or my tug-of-wat games with the dog (In which i’m always the rope or old sock, by the way) because I know my BB friendsand I think of most of you frequent resonders as friends already even though you may not have asked me to be one!–will have their own prior experiences with which to accept my melancholy. There’s something to be said for that! Not one of you will rail at me with those dreaded platitudes, and many of you who have responded to my comments at dufferent times are ALREADY IN MY sef file (If it touches me, I just hit the print icon!)
I haven’y tey decided if I’m going to make any formal “friend requests, so if you don’t hear from me in that regard it may be because in my mind you already hold that distinction, so don’t be hurt (am I having a moment of megalomania here?)
On a side note to Therese: Please don’t change your format TOO much; I treasure this blog just the way it is, and if the responses of others are any indication, thy do as well. Quite frequently, as you already know, you somehow magically touch my soul exactly where it needs to be touched at that given moment, and I totally treasure the personal emails I receive from you after I post. I’d miss that if it all went by the wayside! If geography were no restriction, I’m convinced that we would be “best buds” in every way! To misquote Rodney King,”Can’t we all just be friends?”



report abuse
 

Chinamom

posted October 26, 2007 at 12:07 pm


Great idea, Therese! I get so much out of other social networking groups I’m in. I’ve been out-of-pocket lately, having had surgery, and will have to catch up on your blog.



report abuse
 

Jim G

posted October 26, 2007 at 1:24 pm


Well said Margaret. You should replace that diet coke with something else though because some folks think fake sugar messes up the brain. I heard and/or read that fake sugar (not sure which one) just barely passed FDA approval, and it was because of congresspeople putting pressure on the FDA (who were probably bribed (“supported”) by the company who makes the poison.
Google ” diet soda depression “, and the first link is:
http://www.mcmanweb.com/article-110.htm
I’ve read many of McMan’s articles, he does a great job on his depression web site.



report abuse
 

Jim G

posted October 26, 2007 at 1:25 pm


Well said Margaret. You should replace that diet coke with something else though because some folks think fake sugar messes up the brain. I heard and/or read that fake sugar (not sure which one) just barely passed FDA approval, and it was because of congresspeople putting pressure on the FDA (who were probably bribed (“supported”) by the company who makes the poison.
Google ” diet soda depression “, and the first link is:
mcmanweb.com/article-110.htm
I’ve read many of McMan’s articles, he does a great job on his depression web site.



report abuse
 

Larry Parker

posted October 26, 2007 at 3:29 pm


I’m from New Jersey.
When we see Tony Soprano on TV (or another Jersey mafioso, like those in Goodfellas and other movies) say, “It’s business, it’s nothing personal” before they whack someone, one can be fairly certain he is lying through his teeth.
I’m verbally combative — even Therese chides me somewhat for it — but I do it in the very name of honesty. People can say I should pull a few of my punches, and they may well be right, but no one can ever say it’s not for a lack of fearless self-revelation.
My point is, it’s IMPOSSIBLE not to be personal, and to take seemingly offensive writing personally (particularly when you are called out by name), in a setting like this. Feminists said years ago, “The personal IS political,” and they were right. Especially when “the personal” involves our health.
(NOTE: I don’t mean partisan politics — I’m quite sure we have Republicans, Democrats AND Independents in the BB community — but rather one’s views on the issues people with depression face, which we often express for ourselves and, yes, debate with others in the BB comboxes.)
Or, in the more male twist I like on that classic statement, “Where you stand depends on where you sit.”



report abuse
 

Nancy

posted October 27, 2007 at 10:55 am


Therese – thanks for this helpful suggestion. I probably would not have done this on my own; however, your encouragement and having access to view your page prompted me to give it a try.
Yes, I see some familiar people on your page. Larry, my dog Sam (Samantha) isn’t a doxie like the Petco commerical, but she’s a Lhasa Apso who has a BoBo also. I loved the picture you had of her. I am a true animal lover. As much as I’m a suburban woman (I was going to say girl – but I guess I’m getting a little old for that word)who is accustomed to the suburban/city life, my kids and husband know that I would love to live on a farm with tons of animals before I leave the face of the earth. I may have to settle for visiting the zoos (real ones – not the ones in my head!).
Anyway, Therese, you are such a source of inspiration, direction, hope and strength. Thanks for taking us along on the ride.



report abuse
 

Larry Parker

posted October 28, 2007 at 4:25 pm


Other than being black and tan instead of red, doesn’t Schumi look like the Petco doxie getting scanned at the checkout? ;-P



report abuse
 

Nancy

posted October 29, 2007 at 12:58 am


Hey Larry – I never realized the Petco doxie was red. Schumi is adorable. Just reminding me of the scanner made me smile. Love that commercial. I remember when my husband and I were in Petco getting other stuff, and I got so excited when I saw that they actually sold Bobo. I thought it was just for the commercial.
Thank God my husband is used to my “enthusiasm” over what other people would NOT get excited about. So Bobo came home with us. Then I found little Bobos online. Sam’s toy basket looks like Bobo had a litter of baby Bobos.
Ok – now I can’t believe I’m writing this stuff down. What the heck does what I’m writing have to do about Therese’s topic? Absolutely nothing. But I’m exhausted and dealing with depression, crying, illnesses,exhaustion and insomnia at this moment, so I’m out in Pluto somewhere at 1 AM.
But I’m really glad I came down to get a bottle of water and click on the blogs. Your post about the doxie getting scanned made me smile, and that’s Huge these days – so thanks!



report abuse
 

Nancy

posted October 29, 2007 at 1:02 am


The other one I love with the Bobo (I know they’re not doxies) is the one with the Bulldogs (I think French bulldogs?) – The big one getting a new housemate with the little one, and then he pushes his Bobo over to the little one.
I sound nuts, now. I’m functioning on way too much illness and the brain cells are playing ping-pong in my head.



report abuse
 

Larry Parker

posted October 29, 2007 at 3:36 am


PetSMART would kill me for plugging their competitor, since they sell the “Bobos.”
Petco is the one that named the San Diego Padres’ baseball stadium.
(Another late night ramble …)



report abuse
 

Nancy

posted October 29, 2007 at 4:22 am


I can’t believe I’m still at the computer. Thanks for the correction. Yikes – so it’s PetSMART – I would have sworn it was Petco! Ok – so it’s 4:20 AM, and I really have to sleep. I worked 10 hours today in my office, and I have a crap-load to deal with tomorrow.
I’m so OCD (not ever diagnosed – but I do get in that kind of “space”) – that I’ll be ridiculous enough to see if Petco also sells Bobos !!
Ok – before my head hits the keyboard, good night! (or actually, good morning – crap!)



report abuse
 

Larry Parker

posted October 31, 2007 at 12:22 am


A shameless plug (though presumably allowed on the comboxes of this blog entry if any):
I am now following Therese’s advice to the nines and have started my own blog with the new Bnet platform:
community.beliefnet.com/doxieman122
(Appropriate that Nancy and I just discussed Schumi on here …)
I’m trying to keep it primarily on politics and pop culture. I don’t at all want to compete with Therese — the first is of course, still, the best :-)
I’ve already had feedback that it is written “extraordinarily well” (an exact quote — and no, I didn’t make it up like the posters for bad movies!). Hey, if nothing else, it can’t hurt to take a look, right?



report abuse
 

chrissy

posted November 21, 2007 at 7:26 am


HI, this is my first time here. I’m not sure if this is the right place for me but I stumbled across it in my 100 per day junk emails and thought “what the heck, maybe someone can help me”. I moved to Texas and met a man on match.com from NJ and we have been living together for over 2 yrs. I have tried very hard to make this relationship work because I am now over 50 and want to be with someone. He dangled lots of carrots (about marriage) knowing I would like to be married. But after 2 yrs it’s been made clear that though he loves me, he has no intentions of such. He is very nice when he is sober, but that is only a few minutes here and there. When he drinks (which is everyday)he is gruff, sarcastic, insecure, suspicious, jealous, angry, discontent, and just like to dwell on everything negative that he can think of and pick a fight with me. I always tell myself that I am not going to let him pull me in, but I do. It’s almost like we hate each other, but we love each other. I want to move out and get away from him. But I have lost my lust for life, I feel despondent most of the time, the sparkle has left my eyes, I feel scared of being alone, I want him to show me his love (not just hear it), I realize I cannot fix him, he treats me like a child, he has lied to me many times and everything he says and does is all about him so I guess that makes him self centered. He’s bossy too. I want to have the courage to go forward and not be afraid to start over. I am not an unattractive person and I do make friends fairly easily. I have a job and some money saved. I just feel scared and I cry when I think about leaving him although I am not happy and cannot really even remember what it is like to be happy. I spent 28 years alone and raised my kids by myself and finding someone to be with has not been easy. It seems I am always getting into a relationship with an alcoholic but at the time they hide it so well that I dont see it. When I do figure it out, it’s too late. How do I go forward and move out and feel good and not be scared and cry through the process? How do I find enough love for myself? I know I will miss the good parts of him but it is like one minute he makes a nice gesture and the next minute he is cruel and thoughtless. He never hits me by the way. He is 60 yrs old now. I told him I am going to move and now he is being nice to me. I feel like he has been cruel to me with the hope that i would move. He sends me mixed messages 50 times throughout the day. He acts kinda psycho and has psycho attitudes towards other people and even does some psycho things and later justifies his actions with such stupidity that I am aghast and left speechless. He rarely sees that he has done or said a wrong thing. What is wrong with me that I stay with this man? Is it low self esteem? Is it fear of the unknown future? How do find the strength to leave? And why do I stay?
Well, if there is someone out there that can help me through this, I would appreciate it. I don’t want to feel sad or hurt or cry anymore. But I know that regardless of all the bad in our relationship I will miss him for the good parts (the few and far between good parts).
thanks, chrissy



report abuse
 

Post a Comment

By submitting these comments, I agree to the beliefnet.com terms of service, rules of conduct and privacy policy (the "agreements"). I understand and agree that any content I post is licensed to beliefnet.com and may be used by beliefnet.com in accordance with the agreements.



Previous Posts

Seven Ways to Get Over an Infatuation
“Bewitched, bothered, and bewildered am I” wrote US songwriter Lorenz Hart about the feeling of infatuation. It’s blissful and euphoric, as we all know. But it’s also addicting, messy and blinding. Without careful monitoring, its wild wind can rage through your life leaving you much like the

posted 12:46:43pm Feb. 19, 2014 | read full post »

When Faith Turns Neurotic
When does reciting scripture become a symptom of neurosis? Or praying the rosary an unhealthy compulsion? Not until I had the Book of Psalms practically memorized as a young girl did I learn that words and acts of faith can morph into desperate measures to control a mood disorder, that faithfulness

posted 10:37:13am Jan. 14, 2014 | read full post »

How to Handle Negative People
One of my mom’s best pieces of advice: “Hang with the winners.” This holds true in support groups (stick with the people who have the most sobriety), in college (find the peeps with good study habits), and in your workplace (stay away from the drama queen at the water cooler). Why? Because we

posted 10:32:10am Jan. 14, 2014 | read full post »

8 Coping Strategies for the Holidays
For people prone to depression and anxiety – i.e. human beings – the holidays invite countless possibility to get sucked into negative and catastrophic thinking. You take the basic stressed-out individual and you increase her to-do list by a third, stuff her full of refined sugar and processed f

posted 9:30:12am Nov. 21, 2013 | read full post »

Can I Say I’m a Son or Daughter of Christ and Suffer From Depression?
In 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, we read: “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” What if we aren’t glad, we aren’t capable of rejoicing, and even prayer is difficult? What if, instead, everything looks dark,

posted 10:56:04am Oct. 29, 2013 | read full post »




Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.