More threads by BluMac81


Hi all... I've been in a state of "melancholy" as I like to call it for the past few months, and it was triggered by a disappointment. I was unhappy at the place I worked in Oregon, so I moved out here to Colorado, with hopes of finding a new happiness here (and not such a stressful job). But, everything is the same here, and I've noticed that pattern. Through my life I always seem to be "looking forward" to something that will bring me happiness in the future, and that's what keeps me going day by day. But i'm, starting to see that nothing really changes, that life is generally painful, unfair, and pointless.

I've gotten to the point where I wouldn't mind death if it came to me. Granted, I would never commit suicide, as that would harm my family; but i think, given the chance to sacrifice my life for something or someone (like pushing a kid out of the way from a speeding car), i'd do it in a heartbeat.

I've been wanting to just stay and bed for weeks at a time, but I can't do that... I live alone and have to work to support myself, lest my life get even worse being given financial problems, etc. So I feel lost, and that there is no way out of this... happiness to me is an illusion, and my trying to grasp at it only makes it disperse in the wind... though it seems other people have found happiness... and I wonder if it's just me with the happiness cup which can never be filled.

I'm lost and confused... how do I restore my hope for this life?:(

David Baxter PhD

Late Founder
I don't agree that "life is generally painful, unfair, and pointless" but I would agree that the fact that you feel that way should tell you that something is seriously amiss in the way you are living your life at the moment.

One of the hints is here:

Through my life I always seem to be "looking forward" to something that will bring me happiness in the future, and that's what keeps me going day by day.

To quote (perhaps not 100% accurately) John Lennon: "Life is what happens while you're doing something else".

If you are trying to tolerate unhappiness, disappointment, and dissatisfaction hoping that at some point in the future things will magically change, you are doomed to disappointment. It won't happen. Because in order for it to happen, you need to be making some changes today.

In the short run, it does sometimes make sense to endure something boring or less than thrilling as a step on the way to another goal - for many people, school is like this, a rather uninteresting necessary evil in getting to where they want to be (the lucky ones, like me, actually enjoyed school so even getting there was fun). But if you are continuing to do that with no particular goal in mind, and not even enjoying the process, what on earth is there to keep you going, to keep you getting out of bed every morning to face another day you won't enjoy?

I'm not trying to be Pollyanna here: We all have things in our lives that have to be done but we also all need a balance between "chores", "tasks", "responsibilities", and - what's that other thing? - FUN! Peace. Pleasure. Contentment. Relaxation. Joy.

And that's where I would urge you to look more carefully. What are the sources of fun and joy and relaxation in your life currently? What were the sources of these things previously in your life? What would you like to be doing that you're not doing currently? What's missing from your life and what's stopping you from taking the first stepes toward getting whatever it is into your life?


Hey there BluMac,
I really understand what you're talking about. Also, what Dr. Baxter said about trying to tolerate unhappiness, etc. makes sense to me in that sometimes I think I have to pay my misery dues or something in order to be happy. But, I'm slowly starting to see just why that will not work. But, at the same time, I'm not trying to force happiness. Maybe, you can relate to this, but if I'm feeling sad, I won't try to be happy. Lately, I'll cry it out, or listen to some Blues. Whatever works for you, of course. Guys usually tell me that they work it out on a punching bag or something. Oh, and a few of them have admitted to crying uncontrollably. There's no shame in that, we're only human, we have to get that nastiness out of our systems, or else it fries our nerves. Um, also, you seem kinda poetic. Do you like writing? That can help too. Being creative seems to be food for our spirits.
What you said about not minding death if it came to you, I feel that way too sometimes. I think the word that comes to mind is hopelessness. I've been surprised to know how many people our age (I'm guessing you're about 26) feel that way. I think maybe it's because we feel pressured to find our life's purpose right out of high school, when that may not even come until we're in our 40's, or it might even change or evolve throughout life. I like that reference to John Lennon's lyrics, "Life is what happens to you while you're busy making other plans.." If you can download the song, it's called, "Beautiful Boy" by John Lennon. He wrote it for his son Sean.
OK, sorry to write so much, but one more thing. If you're a Rocky fan, rent Rocky Balboa. There's a scene where he's telling his son, "Life will hit you harder than anyone, and beat you to the ground if you let it.......but it's not about how hard you can hit, it's about how hard you can get hit, and keep pushing forward." You just moved, give yourself some time. I've heard that it takes a good while to adjust to a big move.
Oh,wait, just kidding, I'm not finished. You asked how you restore hope to this life. The key might be to seek inspiration. Colorado, huh? I heard it's BEAUTIFUL there. Try a short walk outside in nature. That helps me gain another perspective on life. Or, smile at an elderly person. Sometimes, they are incredibly lonely, and they light up when a stranger smiles at them. You can try thinking about things greater than us like the universe. Sometimes, I trip myself out thinking about things like that, and all the sudden I have an interest other than my sadness. Visit an animal shelter, if you like animals. I think these small simple things build on each other,and become steps to leading a happier life. I wish you all the best BluMac. Keep coming here. You're a good writer.


There's always hope. Hope isn't neccessarily a thing like a job or a new house. It's a state of mind, I feel, and something secure within, self trust kind o thing.

In my late 20s I spent a number of years struggling to force changes in my life - to get out of a debilitating and soul destroying job, to move house, but, most painfully, to be someone other than myself.
10 years later [is it really that long?!] with time, patience, lots of good therapy, and constantly emerging self acceptance, I'm settled in a job that is not too demanding with colleaguse who I feel comfortable with, and in a nice flat with great flatmates.

I don't know if it's the same for you, but I had lost myself, really. I had to search to find where I most fit. And it wasn't something I could find immediately, and nor could it have been something I planned - my vision 11 years ago was to be a travelling creative educator that visited schools to give workshops. [I used to be a primary school teacher]. But now, more realistically, I am a library assistant for my local council library service, and I do online voluntary work supporting young people who self harm. I also had to put on hold my plans to be a psychotherapist - but hopefully that'll come in due course.
10 years ago I had no conception of what my life would and could be now. I was als very ill, very deeply depressed 10 years ago, and had no emotional or medical support for my illness.

Apologies for the long biography! I just felt it important to give the perspective of someone who's been in a similar emotional place.
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