63 years old and depressed

by Don
(South Florida)

I've always been asocial and subject to mood swings. When I was in college I had my first long-lasting period of negativity that took over a year to recover from. It was one of the worst times in my life in that I'd gone from a creative and productive lifestyle into a reclusive one filled with self loathing and a sense of inadequacy. I inherited from my parents a supercilious and egotistical nature made worse by a sense of snobbery. But I was always aware of the foolishness and error of my way of thinking. I just have never gotten along with others all of my life, partly due to my overly sensitive and artistic nature which has always been made even worse by my natural but hurtful failures and overly self critical mind.
Now I'm 63, and have been through 2 painful divorces and am left living alone in Florida with no sense of hopefulness or happiness at all. I'm not suicidal since I'm relatively healthy and can survive on the little I've inherited, but since my Dad died (2001) and I lost my business (2004) in which I designed custom furniture, I haven't been myself and will never regain that optimism I normally had. I don't even enjoy playing my electric keyboards anymore and have had no desire to write and record original music for 3 or 4 years.
I find myself up to my old tricks of destroying any relationship I have and despising people in general so now I'm left with only 2 or 3 friends who live 1000 miles away (up north) and my brother who has had 2 lung transplants and who doesn't want me to live with him and his wife since I probably would make his life even more difficult. Besides that, he's as supercilious as I am, although he suffers no depression and seems to be quite happy with his wife in the suburbs of New York.
That's not to say that I don't every now and then swing back into feeling nice, especially since the weather is so lovely here, but I never find anyone who's company I enjoy and I don't enjoy exercise or travel anymore. My days and nights are only filled with reading, researching banal matters on the internet, and watching satellite T.V., all of which don't offer me much more than just the passage of time.
Since I've always been self-absorbed and reclusive, it's not a prison sentence and I actually feel more fortunate than most others in that I'm virtually free of the worries I once had. But nothing new ever seems to happen, and as I get older I feel a little less able to cope every day. I pray reincarnation is a myth so I don't have to relive the inevitable end as well as the intermediate pains of life.
I once was on anti-depressants but they never worked for me and they seemed to make things slightly worse in the end. I don't trust or like seeing doctors or psychiatrists and don't want to become dependent on medicines to correct things, and I have little faith in them, to boot.
Not only that, but since I only go out to eat and buy necessities I rarely meet anybody new and I don't enjoy social gatherings and have always detested parties. I'm virtually dependent upon happenstance to bring any change in my life and am incapable of creating anything new at all in my life. Although I'm able to deal with all this, I feel there's very little left other than decreasing health and deterioration of my attractiveness to women. Not only that but I only enjoy the company of women that are at least 20 years younger than I am unless their beauty is way out of my league.
Naturally, I know I should force myself to socialize and exercise and think more positively, but I'm so self absorbed and negative in my outlook it just isn't in the cards for me to maintain any new friendships I find myself occasionally acquiring. I'm far too critical both of others and of myself for any change in the way I've always been. My mother was the same way and although she was extremely intelligent, her asocial personality never brought her any genuine happiness. The thought of living out 20 more years of this, only to lose the few relations I still have seems horrible, but I would never hurt myself. I want to help myself, not make things even worse.
But life holds no new surprises for me, especially since I've failed at every single relationship I've ever had and I don't really believe I should depend on that to bring me fulfillment or joy. I feel people, myself included, are for the most part selfish and uninteresting, particularly since my tastes are esoteric and unusual. I feel my depression is actually quite commonplace, but that doesn't mitigate the pain. Even when I understand the errors of my thinking, I'm incapable of altering my mindset. I realize that even had I been famous and popular, I still would be this way, even worse since I would be open to public criticism and personal attacks, so I have no regrets that I was never a commercial success.
When I was writing and recording original music or creating custom furniture and artwork for my customers, I was happily content, merely for the sense of self satisfaction. I enjoyed listening to my CD's of my music for years, just for personal enjoyment and don't care much if others enjoy them the same as I do. In fact I dislike the ego rush I feel when someone compliments me, since I know it's artificial and unproductive. So what it boils down to is I'm stuck in a rut and every path I pursue leads to the some dead end. It's a pity since when I was younger I was filled with optimism and joy from learning anything new. I find myself reading the tail end of most biographies to see how others lived out their last years, and I'm actually pleased when I see the failures and declines of famous successful people, just to know I'm not alone in my depressive and miserable state. I don't know how to jump into a new life and in all honesty, I don't feel there's very much enjoyment left for me in my remaining years, even if I'm not a drunk or a libertine.
However in the back of my mind I find a faint sense of hopefulness that I'll meet someone whose company I can enjoy and can afford me some sense of companionship or even better, love. But then I look back at how my self-destructive nature has a way of always collapsing anything I develop and try to nurture due to my unpleasant and overly critical demeanor. If all this sounds awful, you've grasped the situation entirely. But such is life, and to expect an unreal purely positive condition is misleading and foolish. dddifferentdifferentdifferentdifferent.differentis misnButag somewhere in my future, although I know everyone's life ends in nothing more than death and decline and that's a miserable prospect, indeed.

Comments for 63 years old and depressed

Average Rating starstarstarstarstar

Click here to add your own comments

Jul 25, 2015
How to function well despite depression, and how to beat depression NEW
by: Anonymous

My recommendation is to participate in Recovery International meetings. Back in 1937 Abraham Low MD was not seeing any gains in his patients using psychoanalytic therapy. He created a system of cognitive and behavior therapy, his most important work being Mental Health through will Training. His program is still very effective.
Look up Recovery International on the web. Find a meeting close by, or an internet meeting if there are no meetings near you. Try about 10 sessions to know if it helps you. The group sessions are free. They ask for a $5.00 donation per meeting but will accept whatever you want to give. It is by far the most powerful system I know to improve your mental health. I know after reading this you will say your situation is different that no one can help you. That is your depression speaking. Go to meetings, read the literature, and slowly you will learn how to fight your depression and learn to love life again. Good luck!

Jun 25, 2015
There is Hope NEW
by: Anonymous

I believe age certainly has something to do with the feelings of loneliness and feeling depressed. I'm 61 years now and tLw (the Lord willing) will be 62 in July. I, like most of you good folks, had a typically fun-filled, constructive life when we were younger. And if we did have a bad hair day (depressed, lonely, etc.) we just got over it. But since getting older (late 50s+), life seems to have lose something and I'm still trying to figure out why. I know for me it started with the "empty-nest" syndrome which is real and leaves a loneliness that is difficult to describe. Then it was going back to school which I loved, but now I'm in debt which I try not to think about (maybe it will go away, right). Then there is not having a job after all that schooling. The Big one is having too much time on my hands and I end up thinking about all the bad decisions and choices I've made over the years. It's an endless cycle. What helps me is reading the Bible, probably the only time I don't have the thoughts. I believe there is hope for all of us. I believe true joy can be found regardless of age if we stop thinking of ourselves and concentrate on helping others (I know easier said that done). The truth is, if we have a roof over our head and food to eat, we are better off than most people in this world. I hope for good things for all. Thanks for listening.

Apr 14, 2015
your story is my story NEW
by: Anonymous

Hi! All
I'm 67 have had depression since 1970's.
MY hair fell out 5 years ago from stress at work.
I am in pain from a car accident 16 years ago.
Have great friends but they don't know how to help. Need to word but I can't stand or sit for long periods of time.
WHAT DO WE DO? As I reread this I hear how negative it sounds.
What do we do?

Mar 10, 2015
61 and depressed
by: Anonymous

I have a woman who is dying of cancer who lives in another state. Drinking now to deal with depression. Loosing home to foreclosure. waiting to die. Please if there is any one who can give me some kindness at all......................Help I am so depressed I am drinking right now to the point of sickness. I have very few if any real friends. I feel like I am already dead inside, but still trying hard to hold on to faith. If I dont get help soon I may be dead due to overdose or whatever. I am 61 year old male. Been through so much B.S. in my life I feel there is nothing left. Drunk on my ass now and wishing I was dead. God bless anyone with compassion enough to help me.... Tried therapy. Faith is failing........Not sure what is left for me.................Still a good man.....

Aug 05, 2014
i'm in the same boat i think
by: jdleet

i also have bouts of depression,been singlefor centuries because no woman wants to date a man that's totally disabled by an invisible illness called bipolar and only makes no more income than the $77,monthly disability check.been disabled & on this income since 1981.i'm almost 60 years old.have become very set in my ways,not willing to take on new interests and the ones i have are also not the mainstream norm for people my age..i'm in to 80's and some 90's music videos and have collection of a couple thousand at least.i also like some current symphonic metal like amberian dawn xandria and tarja..and i love movies..horror comedy action everything..but like you, i'm a homebody.i don't desire the party scene or the bong crowd.i'm happy to sit at home where i'm comfortable and watch stuff on my 42 inch hdtv and surround sound.you didn't mention your article something i'm curious about..i've always prefered to have one 'best' friend as opposed to having a group of 'good' friends.this has led partly to my being so lonely..i wondered as i read your story if you are the same way about having friends in your life.when you've had an exceptionally close bond ,had a best friend relationship(platonic not gay) with a another man for many years many years(nearly the same exact interests in movies,music,philosophy,women,etc) and suddenly he's off and married and busy with family..well..it becomes a lonesome world really fast.i was 50 when he moved away and by that age it's impossible to regain a close bond like that with someone else,as it takes years to form that kind of a bond.as a 50 year old man,who was i going to bond with for the next 10 or 15 years?i'm 59 now..and i haven't found a best friend yet!everybody's too busy.people aren't out there looking for best friends.just bowling buddies for the weekend(so to speak)..that really sucks

Jul 14, 2014
by: Anonymous=stu

I am 63 years old lost my only sibling 6 months ago
Have a lovely wife who i love to bits go to the gym four times a week play golf and am reasonably fit.

sooo why do i feel so bloody lousy since my sister died feel on my own wife has still got her M&D and 5 brothers and one sister .

have realised if she went no one left why do i feel angry and lonely every day i think of suicide was fine before my sister died.

My wife I feel will leave me as i am a total pain

I would fully understand if she did in fact iwould not blame her.

I seem to wallow in self pity

lost my sense of humour

I am a total prick and just want to stay on my own why?

May 09, 2014
almost a carbon copy!
by: Anonymous

My mother who was married 40+ years told me after a break up "You think I'm not alone because I'm married. I've alays been alone." It was sad.

In my own case, 61 never married tho engaged twice. Both were running around with married men.

Get sick of being hurt.

In my own case, they all liked me from day 1 and spend all the rest of the time trying to change me.

Sadly, you gotta love yourself. I had a brother die in car accident when I was 8. I know I never recoved from that, add mother, a sister dying from cancer at 41, and my dad with Alzheimers the last years of his life.


Still, I have hobbies, travel, go to church, etc.
Married (some) have drugged up kids, daughters pregnant at 15, high school dropouts, etc. What did I miss?

10 people get married. 6 get divorced, 2 more are unfaithful and one is unhappy and one of the original ten is still happy.

Horrible odds.

Still, we'll be ok.

Apr 08, 2014
by: Anonymous

that was so sad and i feel the same way. BUT I have a great husband and friends but still am so depressed.

I have a sign posted on the wall that says,
I look at that and sometimes it helps....

Jan 18, 2014
by: Anonymous

I am working on 63 years old in July 2014, I am so depressed that it takes at least half a day to function on a minimal. I am on paxil for anger issues but it is not taking care of my depression. I am not able to call my two children for they want me to completely change my life and I cannot do this at this time. I am an alcoholic, and smoke at least 2-3 packs of cigarettes a day. I worry about my children and all people around me, I feel I have to help all. I have strong health issues and it is hard for me to go see about them, because it takes away money for me to help people so I ignore my problems. These issues are becoming worse and I am on disability with a strict financial responsibility each month. I have tried, medication, rehab, hypnosis and still am who I am. Honestly do not like who I am, HELP

Nov 07, 2013
Enjoy Life!
by: Anonymous

There is much life after physical human death on earth. Enjoy the time you have left!

Aug 20, 2013
by: Anonymous

same age, same feelings. same circumstances. i am a musician too, but no longer get any pleasure from it. I have tried often to hook up with other musicians in the last few years but nothing ever works. just like with women. i have stopped trying anything. i have been wishing my life would just end, especially if nothing new is going to come along.

Mar 01, 2013
The eternal dilemma
by: Anonymous

I can relate very much to what you say. Loneliness and lovelessness are aweful places to be. And yes...all we actually have is now. I'm 61 and trying to mend a relationship that could have been beautiful for the past 30 years if I had not have screwed it up by being insensitive, selfish, immature and way too serious. In addition having an unrealistic view of my own virtues and talents made matters worse. Ageing is something we all hate if we're honest. The way I see it though is that if we can realise something, even very late in the day, and at least try to end one's final years in love rather than lonely and out of love then it is worth the work needed to turn around a screwed-up life. I am very fortunate in that my wife didn't leave me though she had every reason to. It has taken me a very long time to realise that people and relationships are the most important aspect of life and to try hard to cultivate friendship and love is always necessary at all ages. At 63, there is probably still time to grab some happiness. Good Luck.

Jul 31, 2012
I'm 20. But, I can relate to most of what you said.
by: Anonymous

I feel isolated. I also am overly critical and unpleasant and tend to ruin relationships (QUICKLY). I inherited egotism and narcissism from my parents. I'm cynical and tend to focus on negative things. I feel like life is lonely and that I'm a slave to cravings and longings that will either harm me or I can't fulfill. I'm very depressed often times, and I don't find parties enjoyable. Many people I just don't know how to converse with because I don't have the energy, or I don't have interest in the topics they like to discuss (I.E. their air conditioner broke; something that I can't advise them about, be happy or sad over, or excited about in any way). Anyways, I'm really sorry that you feel that way. I may not be 60, but I know the inner turmoil can be painful and I truely do feel sad that you're going through this. I'd like to offer you and internet hug <3 I hope you don't give up trying to feel better. As just a tip, people of faith tend to be happier. Christianity offers hope and joy for people who can't stand this life.

Wishing you peace and relief.
-Anonymous kid...hehe

Mar 06, 2011
by: Anonymous

your remaining years?? The problem is you are talking about yourself as if you are already dead.
No one has remaining years. There are plenty of people in the grave half your age.None of us have remaining years.. We have today ..

Click here to add your own comments

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to What does your depression look like?.