Post
Experience Project iOS Android Apps | Download EP for your Mobile Device

Where is my cowboy, where is my John Wayne!!!! Where are the real men!

I put myself on facebook for the first time.  Not sure how to use it yet, but I figured after 24 years of not dating, I'd give it a try.  But I was quite taken back.  All the guys want babes with bodies of 21.....athletic types.   Hey in high school, I ran track, jumped hurdles, played soccer and down hill skied.  But that was 39 years ago.  Come on guys, are you kianding me!   I had a baby, an office job, menopause, its called aging.  My skin is not so tight, my *** is flat.  Do I work out, yea, but now for different reasons, I walk on my treadmill and lift 3 lb weights to keep osteoporosis away.  I just got my new dentures on top, they sure look better than my own.  But I did it all, I had fun, did the sports, traveled to Ireland , went to the Orange Bowl, hey I marched during half time in the Orange bowl, yea, I was in the band, best years of my life.  But now I am 56......unlike Barbie, my body has changed.  And I hope you are not built like Ken, if you know what I mean.  But why is it that every guy I talk to wants someone half his age, must be in tip top shape, and give him so much sex.  I, myself, love to cuddle and sex is nice, but I am looking for my best friend.  Someone who makes me laugh and cry.  Who will be there when I can't find my teeth, or when I fall and can't get up.   I hated that commercial.  My daughter is grown and soon to be on her own.  I don't like being alone, but I can be, I like my own company, and now that I don't do sports due to my joints aching because I was so freaking athletic. Now I do yoga, meditation, swimming, jacuzzi and reading.  I have bursitis in my hips from being the best in high jumping,  and one day, if I take after my dad, will have my knee replaced, since I spend so much time on my knees.   Down boys.......I rescue kitty cats, the ones that no ones wants, the starving.  So far has saved 150, had them all neutered and in good homes, but I can't walk away from a needy one.  Never could.  Thats my problem, my ex was needy too.  I also have one dog.  Im love animals, they never lie, you can tell their true feelings by their wagging tails and nudging heads, and they don't care if you have the perfect body and still look like barbie.  I am looking for a real man,  John Wayne, where are you.  I loved his movies growing up, and even in real life, he was shy and respected women.  I won't settle for a pig in a barn, I want someone with morals, believes in God, good to his friends, treats his woman right, and will take any man down , like John Wayne that treats her badly.  Maybe thats just in tv........alas, I would rather be alone then be with someone who is not real, who expects me to be a stefford wife.  Not going to happen.  If you want the body of a child, then be a child molester.  But mom, shes all grown up now.  Age is coming, for you too.  Stop thinking woman don't age, don't lose their teeth, don't die.  We are all on the same boat!  So all you stupid, shallow men out there, why don't you do us all a favor and jump over board.  Noah only wants to save the good ones...........sorry, but the men I have spoken to.........have me all riled up.  They don't even care if you have a face, just a hot bod and want to have sex all the time.   I remember those days too, in my 20 and 30 and even a little in my 40.....but give me a break 56..........I'm old.  Any old guys out there looking for an old girl, to make him laugh, cuddle by the fireplace, do naket yoga......yes that is a thing for couples........I need an old fart.........I like old farts!......Handsome hunks who think they are 20..........its time to jumps off the ark.

NO12TALK2 NO12TALK2 56-60, F 78 Responses Aug 2, 2009

Your Response

Cancel

You need a friend. I'm volunteering. You need a shoulder to cry on? I have two. Need an ear to listen? I have two. Need someone with heart? I have ... well, I only have heart, but there's plenty of compassion in there. You want someone who will listen, advise, console and whom you can trust ... like I say, I'm volunteering.

Facebook isn't a dating site. I am not saying that people do not hook up as a result of communicating on FB but that is not it's primary purpose. There are lots of dating sites (which are mostly of a waste of time and money IMO) and there are some that work. Crazy world.

Ya I hear you it's hard to find someone in are age group

Ms. You have come to the wrong place for such. Men are dreamers and dream only of their youth. Few live in the now and have faith in theirselves. Men need to feel young and that is why their noses and brains are led around by their d***s. It is a rare thing to find mr right and I suppose I'm lucky in that department. But keep looking! Someone out there has got to be the one.

Hi there,

Well first off, men-no matter what age, caste or creed-need to be put in their places most of the time. And if they're on the Internet talking to you, 99.5 % of the time, they're losers trying to live out fantasies. If they ask you personal things, immediately recognize they are unimportant and make sure they know it, too. Waste no time on them. Losers in life who wish their fantasies were real. Really.

It sounds to me like you've lived a good life, ma'am. Cherish that because there are women out there who are not so lucky. Don't worry about what men think, they have this pea brained idea sometimes that women 'should' be a certain way. Who asked them? If they were perfect beings themselves, then maybe they could talk. But they're not perfect and flawless. What about their bodies and looks? Bah.

Don't worry, you're beautiful. And when you take care of yourself and believe that about yourself, others will, too. It's not their judgement to make. It's yours.

HA HA HA <br />
Hilarious but take it from me the sort of men i would say are "aging with honour" are not going to be found chatting online or trying to hit on girly girls your gonna have to meet them in real life. <br />
<br />
Even if that means attending some stupid social/dating thing where you meet 100 people and try to find one who isnt a total p***k to talk to.

I feel the same way about women. My 60 year old wife of 28 years thru me over for a 26 year old boy-toy she had been screwing around with behind my back all summer long. I just turned 55 myself last Oct. I'm not looking for "Barbie". I know "Barbie" would not be interested in an old fellow like me. I'm just looking for a woman around my own age to talk to. That's all!

Hey, good men ARE out there...........I found one by accident and you will too. Seriously, I backed into a relationship I never saw coming.........but all my family and friends did. I was going next door to enjoy my neighbor's fire, and talking to him for months.......never thought romance, and we traded meals and jokes and now here I am. He's not my dear hubby ........<br />
<br />
And you know......he is wonderful to me and has been really kind.............<br />
<br />
but I still think I could be alone? Now how silly is that! <br />
<br />
I think I am afraid of losing someone else..........can't do it........please GOD. I think I am in fear mode and can't really break down and be honest.<br />
<br />
However, my darling daughter is faithfully taking her meds and she is so almost normal that we are all excited!<br />
<br />
I am sorry I am babbling at you.........I should delete this but maybe you will understand?<br />
<br />
You aren't alone on this trip.....and hugs don't mean the same when they are long distance. But, I am still sending them your way.......<br />
<br />
and....<br />
a funny for you<br />
<br />
<br />
<br />
<br />
O.M.G. - I'm Rich!<br />
Silver in the Hair<br />
Gold in the Teeth<br />
Crystals in the Kidneys<br />
Sugar in the Blood<br />
Lead in the ***<br />
Iron in the Arteries<br />
And<br />
an inexhaustible supply of Natural Gas.<br />
I never thought I'd accumulate such wealth!

that is so funny.

Hey, good men ARE out there...........I found one by accident and you will too. Seriously, I backed into a relationship I never saw coming.........but all my family and friends did. I was going next door to enjoy my neighbor's fire, and talking to him for months.......never thought romance, and we traded meals and jokes and now here I am. He's not my dear hubby ........<br />
<br />
And you know......he is wonderful to me and has been really kind.............<br />
<br />
but I still think I could be alone? Now how silly is that! <br />
<br />
I think I am afraid of losing someone else..........can't do it........please GOD. I think I am in fear mode and can't really break down and be honest.<br />
<br />
However, my darling daughter is faithfully taking her meds and she is so almost normal that we are all excited!<br />
<br />
I am sorry I am babbling at you.........I should delete this but maybe you will understand?<br />
<br />
You aren't alone on this trip.....and hugs don't mean the same when they are long distance. But, I am still sending them your way.......<br />
<br />
and....<br />
a funny for you<br />
<br />
<br />
<br />
<br />
O.M.G. - I'm Rich!<br />
Silver in the Hair<br />
Gold in the Teeth<br />
Crystals in the Kidneys<br />
Sugar in the Blood<br />
Lead in the ***<br />
Iron in the Arteries<br />
And<br />
an inexhaustible supply of Natural Gas.<br />
I never thought I'd accumulate such wealth!

I would love to be supportive here but let me tell you as someone who has been alone for a long time since my husband passed, there are no John Waynes anymore. I would love one too. Men have grown weaker with each passing year. <br />
I wish you luck but you are going about things the right way. Do the things in your life that make you happy and pray the rest falls into place.

the facebook atter i know the feeling my 1st day was a disaster my daughters had show me~still at times i forget

i am 41 yrs old and i have realized that if you just are with someone for there looks or sex you will end up alone and lonely. the fact is everyone gets old and starts to sag lose their looks maybe gain some weight whatever if your not with a person for who they are meaning personality, caring and being able to talk and do things with them you will end up unhappy i am a guy and there is a guy somewhere for you that thinks this way stay strong you will find him

finally a man who is looking for his soulmate, not a playmate. It is not me that is looking for perfect looks, and that 21 year old bod, that impossible, but every man I speak to, that is what they want. Even my own brother in law put on face book that he is 28 to get the young ones. and he he 60. Looks good, but not 28 for sure. It is impossible to age without your body going with you. There must be a man out there who is not just looking to have sex. The last guy, you didn't even need a face.........how shallow is that. that didn't matter, just the body and have give him sex. What a turn off. Yes I won't make the mistake of ever being with someone just for looks and sex..........I am not like that at all, but the men all seem to be.

Lots of us around the world are going through very hard times. I bet it was always like this but because we weren't here before we think that things are worst than ever :) <br />
<br />
I see you as a generous person, a loving mother and a caring daughter. It's only natural that you feel tired, drained and depressed: lost your job, there's an important professional issue to be resolved in a Court of Law, you worry because you want your daughter to get well and have a happy life, you are concerned about aging as you remember how your mother used to be, the years brought you some ailments and you miss having a partner, a friend, an ally, a lover to walk the road of life with you. <br />
<br />
It's too much for just one person to handle without being sometimes crushed by all the stress and so many responsibilities. <br />
<br />
Just try to look at some positive changes you were already able to make in your life: the healing massages, making a present for your daughter (as you can't afford to buy one), not having stupid men around you and most of all taking care of your depression. <br />
<br />
I admire and compliment you for all that!

thanks for your words of encouragement. We did have a bit of luck, our basement was under 8 inches of water, our house insurance would not pay for flooding from the ground, the rain was from hurricane Irene. But my town was declared a disaster, and that was a good thing, as Fema came to our house to check out our damages to our furnace, no heat, and mold starting to grow on all the walls. 3 days later, we rec'd a check for 1900....was able to pay the plumber, so we have heat now, and pay for electric and my cell phone, and our internet......so Irene turned out to be good news for me. I may be on medicaid for now, which I hate, never being unemployed since I was 15, but medicaid is paying for my front dentures for FREE. So I am trying to count what little blessing I have. My mom has gotten worse, and I pray every night she is here with me tomorrow. Shes been my closest friend for 56 years, and will surely leave an emptiness in my heart, plus without her social security, and me on medicaid, we will lose the house for sure. After my dad worked 3 jobs to build it, It would kill me to lose it.....I pray I can find work before this happens.......everything is on the edge.......,..but I hang on, cry when I have to....even laugh when its too much........there are people worse off than me.......for now........thanks so much for caring. It makes me realize there are so many caring people out there. And to reach out to a stranger, makes my heart skip a beat and gives me hope. Thanks

When u reach the end of ur rope, tie a knot and hang on!! I know what it's like to be in the pits. After it all, I discovered my happiness. Personally, happiness is a choice that I make everyday, rain shine, whatever. If u like to read, the book, "1325 Buddhist ways to be happy". I am not Buddhist, but it helped me tremendously.

I read books like that all the time, especially when I am at the end o my rope. The words can really save you. I will check it out.

I am with you on the depression and loss of self loss of job loss of everything l have ever worked for and see no help no end in sight. I have good days and bad dark and deep. I wake up like Im going to work but lay there because there is nothing for me to do. no where for me to go. I feel as if my mind is mush and my social skills fail me I cant talk to any one with out making an *** of my self or becoming suddenly aware of what I dont know any longer. I feel useless and unable to regain anything worth anything. <br />
<br />
As far as men they dont seam to change at 18 of 56 sex is a motive in talking to us.

Hey, its a good thing that you at least wake up. Sometimes I have slept so much, I have missed the entire day. I figure whats the difference, no where to go, no money to shop, no friends to hang out with, they all have jobs, and lead a totally different life style. I had skills when I lost my job 2.5 years ago, but now, my self esteem is as low as it can be. What if I can't do the things I used to do, but at 56, no one wants to hire you at all, they won't call. I will be on state aid until I am old enough to retire. No golden years for me....no golfing vacations, nothing but worry, and for what...to end up like my mother and have my daughter abuse me since she can't handle it. I have tried meditation, so hard, trying to empty my thoughts, make them go away. Makes it peaceful for a while. But then, they're back. So now i keep a notebook. On the left side, when I think a worry thought or something negative, I write it down, and then on the right side, I brain storm, how I can fix this problem. I get some good ideas, but mostly money fixes all, and without a job............all the ideas in the world won't help. Right now, I am thinking of starting my own business, since I won't lay me off.

First advice i would give you is to stop being negative (please keep reading). No matter what we are going through our attitude makes the situation. how easy it is for you to feel sorry for yourself you can be positive out of the situation, because to be honest if your negative or positive about it your going to be in he same situation. so try and be positive it will make you feel alot better. Trust me just start ready books about positive thinking and try to be a little more strong and i promise you, you will make it through it. the sun always shine after the storm!!!!

I am not being negative.....I am being realistic. But I do read those books to help me not worry so much. No one will hire me at 56, so I was thinking about starting my own business. So I have not given up, still scared to death, still worry about my mom, if she dies, I will lose my best friend of 56 years, plus lose her house as I can't afford it on medicaid. My dad worked 3 jobs to build this house. I just can't let that happen. My sister was helping me out a bit, but now her husband who walked out on her 2 years ago, but still married, is going to declare bankruptcy, lost his car, repossessed and my sister who works so hard as a heart nurse and is not in the best of health, and who paid every Penney for this house... is terrified that she will lose the house, all because her husband who worked out daily at the gym she paid for got all buff and decided she was too fat for him, and now he is pretending to be 28 on facebook. My entire family is hanging on that last rope. But still, that helicopter crash in NY yesterday with the group of tourists, the one lady that died ....it was her freaking birthday surprise, a ride over the skyline of NY. Instead she ends up stuck in the back seat of the copter, everyone else got out, but the birthday girl died alone, on her s birthday in the Hudson River. God........my life is great compared to that. But she was so excited about her trip to NY. She was from Austrailla. Just not fair. Life is not fair.

First advice i would give you is to stop being negative (please keep reading). No matter what we are going through our attitude makes the situation. how easy it is for you to feel sorry for yourself you can be positive out of the situation, because to be honest if your negative or positive about it your going to be in he same situation. so try and be positive it will make you feel alot better. Trust me just start ready books about positive thinking and try to be a little more strong and i promise you, you will make it through it. the sun always shine after the storm!!!!

I am going through similar.My son is an adult with a sickness & I have 2 other adult kids.After 16 years of domestic voilence & looking after 2 ex partners I finally started studying but no sooner had I passed some minor study & was trying to get work when the doctor said I must give it all up for now if I was to help my son properly.He has schizophrenia.I have been trying to teach him semi independence & encouraging him to take his meds.All the accomodation workers when he has tried to get in have been so discriminate in what they expect to the point of cruelty.They say he is not independent enough or he is too independent,they don't listen to me & one interview seemed so much more like an interogation.It is disheartning but I will perservere,I never give up hope.As for work well I don't know whether I can get into the feild I studyed for now & as far as going back to study well that is a bit of a bummer as like you I am turning 50 this year.My life has always seemed to be sad too & I just want to be happy.I have had trouble with men & feel the same way you do about men our age.Have you seen the movie "last chance harvey" it is great & shows us never to give give up on love its out on dvd.My daughter says it is not sicko to go for a younger man up to 10 yrs.Who knows what will happen in the future.I recently met a woman in her fifties sixties that was single who had wanted kids but travelled with her ex partner instead.I am glad I have children.Pets are a blessing as well & are great company.Anyway Take care

schizophrenia is a hard disease to handle. If they take their meds, they can have somewhat of a life, but off the meds, can be dangerous. Depression that my daughter suffers on, she has threatened suicide so much, that one night I just cried and asked God to take us both just to the pain. I will check out that movie. I read something the other day that made me realize what I was doing wrong. When you're young, you plan for the future, hope to find love, marriage, getting that house, a future career. But after 50, our future is coming at us too fast. This article advised that we should do things that bring us instant job, a rush , fun, no more planning for anything in the future, that creates worry, the only thing is to do something that is fun, outrageous, and crazy, but our life is short, and we only have the days that we are lucky to have. I guess its like that movie the Bucket list. Its time to list the things we wished we had done, and do them anyway we can, and who cares what anyone thinks

It truly saddens me that I see so many women who are searching for a good guy. I genuinely apologize for the other guys in this world, I don't know why guys can be such jerks, I suppose its because they send so much time hanging out with other jerk guys that it rubs off on them hehe. But I have not lost hope and you should not either. We are not all so lucky as to find somebody to love in this world, but I truly believe that chivalry is not dead, and I believe that there is much much more to a woman then a pretty face. On top of that I even believe that there are other guys out there who feel like I do. So don't give up, and remember, even though at times it can seem like there is nothing to live for, like there is so much bad in the world, remember to stop and look around you at the simple beauty. This is how I achieve my happiness. This world we live in is a beautiful one, its a little busted, and even cruel at times, but still good. All I know is that we need to enjoy life while we can, even if it seems impossible at times, for none of us know what is on "the other side". Let me know if you need to talk. I probably can't give you a happy day, but perhaps a smile or two, if I'm lucky ;)<br />
-Michael

what part of the world do you come from Michael. I could use that smile....

LIFE IS SUFFERING, if you can accept that, things will get better. I feel for you and especially your daughter. I also suffer from depression. The best advice I can give is show her how beautiful life it in the most simple forms...things which are free. Dont buy her anything for her birthday, give her a memory, and let that memory last a life time. The greatest bonds in life are withthe ones we love, as a family. How ever big or small, complete or incomplete. Share the moments. Share the love. Share your lives together. Find a happy place and take her there, good things will come to those who deserve them...and she does.

if you need someone to talk to, I'd be honored to lend a friendly ear. I can tell you're a good mother who cares deeply about your daughter. That's something to be proud of. And 55 is a beautiful age. I'm serious. You'll find a bit of happiness soon enough.

You sound like an amazing person/mother. Hope everything works out for your family.

Hope everything turns out well for you. You sound like an amazing mother/person and you deserve the best.

Hey i don't mean this to sound bad but its nice to here im not alone when i read peoples comments.<br />
<br />
I'm not christian but i am spiritual, I am 21 and i have suffered on and off with depression for a while but just lately i fell into a very bad spell again i have a young daughter and i feel so guilty because i don't want her to pick up on my negative emotions.<br />
<br />
I get Reiki healing, i don't know if any of you have tried it but it really helped me, i felt someone had wrapped me up in a blanket and i was being swayed from side to side, and it really restores you body and mind, especially if you are experiencing pains from anxiety, it stopped my panic attacks completely. It is not connected to any religion so anyone can give it a go.<br />
<br />
Hope this helps for anyone who needs it, i know it costs but if you can just save up the money for one session it can really bring you into the now and give you piece, and if you cant find a job given your age, if you could some how get some funding you could train as a reiki healer, and it can help people who are in pain around you and yourself, might give your mum some comfort.<br />
<br />
I hope everyone who is suffering pulls through, and i hope i do to.<br />
<br />
Love and Light Gemma

thanks so much about that info on Reiki healing. I think I will check out a class. You make it sound so peaceful, I think it will help both me and my daughter. Than
ks

I cant think of what to say that is not a cliche or has already been said so I will just say that I admire your courage enormously. To have endured so much and still think about your daughter first....you must have a truly mighty heart. I hope God/the gods/he/she/it bless you for it. There is nothing wrong with occasionally having doubts or wishing that you didnt have to put up with it or that it was somebody else's problem. Its part of being human.<br />
As far as depression is concerned, I can suggest only the cures that sometimes work for me and that is to go to someplace that makes you happy, do something that you are good at and that satisfies you or help other unfortunate people out which works as well. I am sorry, these are the things that work for me or for others that I know off.<br />
I hope everything works out for you.

I'm so sorry about this. I wish I had some words of advice, but sadly, I have none. I can't say I know how you feel either. You deserve to be happy too. Everybody does. I admire you. I admire your strength to keep going, and your sacrifice for your daughter. You're extremely brave. I wish I was more like you. I'm in my teens, and I don't even have half the strength you do.<br />
<br />
Stay strong. I hope your life's going to be filled with happiness. Good luck.

Your story sounds very similar to mine if you wish to message me sometime your welcome to take care

You are a dear person. You choose to reach out and tell your story and wish us all a better life. Those of us who are suffering, at list myself thank you for doing that. Can't offer any advice since I too are clueless about how hard life has become, but I can wish from the bottom of my heart a better life for you and me and all those who keep trying no matter how hard it gets.<br />
Hold on to the wonderful relationship you have with your daughter. Is precious...I sent my love to you just like a sister would.

This artical helped me: <br />
<br />
Living With a Mood Disorder<br />
<br />
MOOD disorders are alarmingly common. It is estimated, for example, that more than 330 million people worldwide suffer from serious depression, a condition characterized by overwhelming sadness and a loss of pleasure in everyday activities. It has been estimated that in 20 years, depression will be outranked only by cardiovascular disease. Little wonder that it has been called “the common cold of mental illness.”<br />
<br />
In recent years bipolar disorder has received greater public attention. Traits of this illness include severe mood swings that vacillate between depression and mania. “During the depressed phase,” says a recent book published by the American Medical Association, “you may be haunted by thoughts of suicide. During the manic phase of your illness, your good judgment may evaporate and you may not be able to see the harm of your actions.”<br />
<br />
Bipolar disorder may affect 2 percent of the population in the United States, meaning that there are millions of sufferers in that country alone. Sheer numbers, though, cannot describe the tormenting experience of living with a mood disorder.<br />
Depression—Overwhelming Sadness<br />
<br />
Most of us know what it is like to experience a wave of sadness. In time—perhaps in just a matter of hours or days—the feeling subsides. Clinical depression, however, is far more serious. In what way? “Those of us who are not depressed know that the rides our emotions take us on eventually end,” explains Dr. Mitch Golant, “but the depressed individual experiences the ups and downs, twists and turns of his feelings as if on a runaway train without a clear sense of how or when—or even if—he can ever get off.”<br />
<br />
Clinical depression can take many forms. Some people, for example, have what is called seasonal affective disorder (SAD), which manifests itself during a particular time of year—usually winter. “People with SAD report that their depressions worsen the farther north they live and the more overcast the weather,” says a book published by the People’s Medical Society. “While SAD has been linked mainly to dark winter days, in some cases it’s been associated with dark indoor work spaces, unseasonable cloudy spells and vision difficulties.”<br />
<br />
What causes clinical depression? <br />
<br />
The answer is not clear. While in some cases there seems to be a genetic link, in most instances life experiences appear to play an important role. It has also been noted that it is diagnosed in twice as many women as men. But this does not mean that men are unaffected. On the contrary, it is estimated that between 5 and 12 percent of men will become clinically depressed at some point in life.<br />
When this type of depression strikes, it is all-pervasive and affects virtually every aspect of one’s life. It “shakes you to the core,” says a sufferer named Sheila, “corroding your confidence, self-esteem, your ability to think straight and make decisions, and then when it reaches deep enough, it gives a few hard squeezes just to see if you can hold on.”<br />
<br />
There are times when a sufferer can gain much relief by talking out his or her feelings with an empathetic listener. (Job 10:1) Even so, it must be acknowledged that when biochemical factors are involved, depression cannot simply be willed away with a positive outlook. Really, in such a case, the dark moods of this illness are beyond the sufferer’s control. Furthermore, the sufferer may be as baffled by the condition as family members and friends are.<br />
<br />
Consider Paula, a Christian who endured crippling episodes of intense sadness before her depression was diagnosed. “Sometimes after Christian meetings,” she says, “I would rush out to my car and weep, for no reason at all. I just had this overwhelming sense of loneliness and pain. Although all the evidence showed that I had many friends who cared for me, I was blind to it.”<br />
Something similar happened to Ellen, whose depression required that she be hospitalized. “I have two sons, two lovely daughters-in-law, and a husband—all of whom I know love me very much,” she says. Logic, it seems, would tell Ellen that life is good and that she is precious to her family. But on the battlefield of depression, dark thoughts—no matter how irrational—can overwhelm the sufferer.<br />
Not to be overlooked is the significant impact that one person’s depression can have on the rest of the family. “When someone you love is depressed,” writes Dr. Golant, “you may live with a chronic sense of uncertainty, never really knowing when your loved one will recover from a depressive episode or fall into a new one. You can feel profound loss—even grief and anger—that life has deviated, maybe permanently, from the norm.”<br />
<br />
Often, children can detect a parent’s depression. “A depressed mother’s child becomes highly attuned to his mother’s emotional states, carefully observing every nuance and change,” writes Dr. Golant. Dr. Carol Watkins notes that children of a depressed parent are “more likely to have behavioral problems, learning difficulties, and peer problems. They are more likely to become depressed themselves.”<br />
<br />
Bipolar Disorder—Consistently Inconsistent<br />
<br />
Clinical depression is indeed challenging. But when mania is added to the equation, the result is called bipolar disorder. “The only consistent thing about bipolar disorder is that it is inconsistent,” says a sufferer named Lucia. During mania, notes The Harvard Mental Health Letter, bipolar patients “can be unbearably intrusive and domineering, and their reckless and restless euphoria may suddenly change into irritability or rage.”<br />
<br />
Lenore recalls her experience with the exhilaration of mania. “I was absolutely brimming over with energy,” she says. “Many called me a superwoman. People would say, ‘I wish I could be more like you.’ I often felt a great sense of power, as though I could accomplish anything. I exercised furiously. I functioned on very little sleep—two or three hours a night. Yet, I woke up with that same high energy level.”<br />
<br />
In time, however, a dark cloud began to hover over Lenore. “At the height of my euphoria,” she says, “I would feel an agitation from somewhere deep inside, a motor running that could not be shut off. In a flash, my agreeable mood would become aggressive and destructive. I would verbally pounce on a family member for no apparent reason. I was furious, hateful, and completely out of control. After this frightening display, I would suddenly become exhausted, tearful, and extremely depressed. I felt worthless and wicked. On the other hand, I might switch back to my amazingly cheerful self, as if nothing had ever happened.”<br />
<br />
The erratic behavior of bipolar disorder is a source of confusion to family members. Mary, whose husband suffers from bipolar disorder, states: “It can be confusing to see my husband happy and talkative and then suddenly become despondent and withdrawn. It’s a real struggle for us to accept the fact that he has little control over this.”<br />
Ironically, bipolar disorder is often just as distressful—if not more so—to the sufferer. “I envy people who have balance and stability in their lives,” says a bipolar patient named Gloria. “Stability is a place that bipolar people visit. None of us actually live there.”<br />
<br />
What causes bipolar disorder?<br />
<br />
There is a genetic component—one that is stronger than that of depression. “According to some scientific studies,” says the American Medical Association, “immediate family members—parents, siblings, or children—of people with bipolar depression are 8 to 18 times more likely than the close relatives of healthy people to develop the illness. In addition, having a close family member with bipolar depression may make you more vulnerable to major depression.”<br />
In contrast with depression, bipolar disorder seems to afflict men and women equally. Most often, it begins in young adulthood, but cases of bipolar disorder have been diagnosed in teenagers and even children. Nevertheless, analyzing the symptoms and arriving at the proper conclusion can be highly challenging even for a medical expert. “Bipolar disorder is the chameleon of psychiatric disorders, changing its symptom presentation from one patient to the next, and from one episode to the next even in the same patient,” writes Dr. Francis Mark Mondimore of the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. “It is a phantom that can sneak up on its victim cloaked in the darkness of melancholy but then disappear for years at a time—only to return in the resplendent but fiery robes of mania.”<br />
<br />
Clearly, mood disorders are difficult to diagnose and can be even more difficult to live with. But there is hope for sufferers.<br />
<br />
[Footnote<br />
<br />
In part, this may be due to their susceptibility to postpartum depression as well as hormonal changes at menopause. Then, too, women are usually more inclined to seek medical attention and, hence, receive a diagnosis.<br />
Some names appearing in this series have been changed.<br />
Doctors report that often, each mood persists for many months. However, they note, some “rapid cyclers” vacillate between depression and mania several times per year. In rare cases, sufferers switch from one extreme to the other within a 24-hour period.

Dang, I almost cried reading that.<br />
<br />
I don't know what to say, other than to just keep pushing.<br />
<br />
Although you may not be comfortable talking with someone a third of your age, I'd be willing to talk it out with you. I'm serious when I say this, because I know sometimes you do need someone to pour it out onto, and pouring it out onto a random anonymous stranger is usually a easy way to do it (as you have done so far by posting it on EP).