Why I’m Taking A Mental Health Break
You may have noticed that in the last couple of days I haven’t been putting out much content, and I won’t be having a live show tonight. I contemplated whether or not to address it, since it’s private, but I feel like being honest with the Turtleboy audience will be therapeutic. Long before TB was a thing I struggled with depression, just like millions of other people do. But at times it can take over your mind and make you unable to function properly and do your job. That’s where I am right now. It all just hit me hard after the live show Saturday night (which went really well) and it’s controlled me every minute of the day since. And in my line of work, where I’m expected to entertain and not let it show, it becomes impossible for me to do my job effectively when I get like this. I have trouble sleeping, eating, and I feel like my heart is beating a million miles an hour constantly. I couldn’t fake it if I tried tonight.
I feel like I needed to come forward and talk about this because I’m getting the usual emails, DMs, and other messages from people about story ideas, and it’s just hard for me to pretend like everything is normal. I thought about not talking about this publicly but I think it’s better to do so so that other people who feel what I’m feeling right now don’t feel stigmatized. You’re not alone, and it’s not abnormal. The pandemic and lockdowns have only exacerbated these feelings for millions of people. And if anyone wants to reach out privately to talk about it I will read all your messages and get back to you when i can.
To be clear, this has nothing to do with trolls or anyone else, because I’m sure they’ll think this is some sort of big victory. You haven’t broken me at all, and I’m not going anywhere. I struggled with these thoughts when I was teaching, and when I was in high school and college. I remember days in front of my class where they knew something was wrong, and if I went live tonight you’d know too.
I was inspired to come forward by Kirk Minihane, who from the outside looks like he has it all. He’s famous, rich, and has millions of people who follow him. But one day at the height of his fame and success he just announced that he needed to take a break because he contemplated throwing himself in front of a train. He spoke publicly about this on his podcast and took the time off necessary to deal with his issues.
The last month or so I’ve really been struggling with depression and suicidal thoughts. I’m going to enter a treatment program to fight this, so the show will be on hiatus. I’m scared that these thoughts and feelings are back, but this is life with depression. It’s a hard fight.
— Kirk Minihane (@kirkmin) February 29, 2020
I’m going on an indefinite leave from the show. Still battling mental health issues. Truth is I came back to work too fast. Wish I could be there with @GerryCallahan, @_ChrisCurtis and @KenLairdWEEI – I love those guys very much. I’ll be OK and sorry I’m leaving you all with Mut.
— Kirk Minihane (@kirkmin) September 6, 2018
Seeing lots of this today – that’s great. I’m still struggling with my mental health every day, not easy now. And really not easy after Mike’s singing today. Still hurting 10 hours later. https://t.co/DzqkHg7VOm
— Kirk Minihane (@kirkmin) March 25, 2020
I have another childhood friend who lost two brothers – one who was a police officer who was murdered, and another who went into severe depression as a result of that. He inspires me by publicly posting about his feelings and struggles. I don’t know how he holds up, but I’m sure talking about it helps. Sometimes it’s just better to talk about these things, even with strangers.
I’m getting help, and I have a lot of people who care about me. Blogging is therapeutic for me so I’m going to continue to try to blog when I can. But right now I just have some things I have to take care of, and doing all this by myself is mentally draining.
It’s days like this that make me miss having other bloggers to keep the content coming. I miss South Shore Turtlegirl a lot. She and I were very close for a while before we parted ways, and my mental issues contributed to that. I always told her that if I died the blog would belong to her and I’d expect her to carry on the legacy, and I hope someday to hear from her again. But she’s not here anymore, and it’s hard to replace her. With that said I will be looking for new bloggers, and if you are interested I’d urger you to write up a blog in a word doc, include pictures, and email it to [email protected] If I’m still preoccupied with my issues it will be a good opportunity to publish some tryout blogs and let turtle riders decide who I should bring aboard. My only recommendation is to be yourself, don’t try too hard to be Turtleboy, don’t try to come up with funny names for people (we’ll figure that out later) and pick a topic or subject you see on Internet that you’re passionate about.
I’m not going anywhere, and I thank you for your support.
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