From Jon

Dear You,

My name is Jon I'm a carpenter with a wife and two young children.

Two years ago I had depression, I don't know how long it lasted maybe two years, but for the last year at least I thought about killing myself constantly (like, almost every waking minute of the day).

I got so good to hiding it and "coping" I used to play with the children while I had an image of myself hanging was in front of my eyes.

I only realise now how ill I was. Recovery took a while and a lot of the time it felt like a lot of effort. Sometimes (while I was recovering) even feeling happier was too much to bare.

Two years down the line I can't actually remember much about it, it's just gone. I look at my kids every night and feel so blessed for the time I have with them, I'm enjoying my work again and my partner and I rarely go through a day without sharing a laugh. It's all very different.

I remember thinking "why can't anybody see how much I'm suffering" but I'm afraid they can't, you need to tell the people (even if the only person you can tell is your GP or Samaritans).

I went to my GP first and then was given a place on a group CBT course, I found this hard to cope with and was given one to one CBT and also started on anti depressants, both of which really worked for me.

I have just finished reading "Stop Thinking and Start Living" by Richard Carlson. I am 100% convinced by his approach to depression, his "treatment" feels like cheating or a quick fix but it REALLY has worked for me. If you understand the principles behind CBT I think Carlson's approach could really work for you. Most importantly of all it requires a fraction of the effort and hard work that CBT demands. don't believe I was badly depressed when I read the book but I believe anybody could understand and absorb the central message of this book (regardless of your state of mind). 

I'm still on antidepressants and I had a CBT group refresher last year. One day I'll come off the anti depressants but right here, right now, I'm happy.

I'm happy to be writing to you, I'm happy to be thinking of you and sending you my love.

You're not bad or unlovable, just ill. I'm holding your hand, I'll walk with you.

Yours sincerely

Jon Wild