April/May 1999


Paul lives in Manchester and he speaks to us about his depression.

My name is Paul, and I am 28 years old. Eight years ago I suffered a nervous breakdown of some sort which at the time was called anxiety/depression. Since that time, my life has been pretty miserable really, with pain. There have been lots of therapists, doctors and counsellors to help me get back on track. Something has kept me going for eight years, deep down, which I think is my faith in God. At the moment I feel I am at a crossroads, because I don't quite know what to do next. The doctors have sort of told me to just get on with things now and just try and get my life back to normal, which I find difficult because I've got out of that. It's been a long time since I was living a normal life in a routine of any sort.

PaulI don't particularly like the society that I am supposed to get back into anyway, because everyone seems to have an urge to compete with everybody. People want to push their careers, and push themselves and think about themselves. I want some hope about my future because I've got a lot of ability and talent that has been dormant for a long time. I hope that I can find a friend to help me get more focussed about what to do and what not to do. The thing I find odd is that I come from a very caring, close family and I seem to be affected by the force of that really. Even people very close to me and the sort of advice that I get, frightens me at the moment. Where am I going to end up in the future? God's helping me anyway, but I believe that I am going to understand why all that pain happened to me. Hopefully, it will help me help other people.

I studied at University for two years and I found it hard coping; I was trying to get back into things and get myself some qualifications, but I found it difficult coping at University because I'd lost a lot of my social skills and a lot of my ability to be able to relate to other people. I was still feeling upset and anxious at times, so I left University because I had no confidence. I felt I needed more help. I could go back I think, but I don't think it is a good idea at the moment. I was a bit upset when I left because I didn't know what else I was going to do. Since I have come back home, I have found it difficult to get focussed on anything. I do want to do what I am good at, rather than what I have got to do under the circumstances. I think about my own future and I need to be very practical about what I need to do next. I don't quite know who to trust, but I have to try and get back on with things. I hope that one day it will fit into place, but I think I need more than that. Before all this happened, I had close friends and my family were a lot closer, I had more support and society seemed a little bit more caring.

left arrowback button {short description of image} {short description of image}right arrow

. Material Copyright © 1997 THOMAS (Those on the Margins of a Society)
THOMAS is an integral part of Catholic Welfare Societies, Registered Charity number 503102