Depression His, Depression Hers… Introduction

March 12th, 2018

A likely story…and probably true” Groucho Marx

As I emerged from a severe depression in 2017, I asked myself what the lesson was for me in that particular mind bending, long, and horrific episode.  Perhaps there was no lesson, or perhaps we are given challenges to make us more aware, more awake, and more compassionate.

Usually, when I come out of a terrible experience, the lesson involves doing something positive for myself and for others.  I hope this is a piece of that.

I asked my husband Eric to join me in this.  We are both writers, and we both have much to say.

So many of us in America with a mental illness live in a great big closet, a large walk in closet probably about the size of Texas.

Eric and I lived there too….for many years.

He came out very publicly around 2005 in Austin, where he was well known from his 20 year career in broadcast journalism, including a long stint as a radio talk show host.  A feature story was done in the Austin American Statesmen about well known Austinites who suffered from mental illness including singer Shawn Colvin, retired football player Hollywood Henderson, former Lieutenant Governor Bob Bullock, and Eric Blumberg.

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Eric in the 90’s on the radio, Austin Texas


It took me longer.  People knew but I didn’t write about it until 2013.  It’s more comfortable in that big closet, but I gave myself a push and haven’t looked back since.

We are many things.  Our illnesses don’t define us.  Between us we have a son and a daughter from previous marriages. Both in their 30’s are kind, intelligent, and creative people.  We have a few college degrees between us as well which led to my career in social work and philanthropy, and his in teaching and journalism.  We’ve had some awards for work well done.  We have friends and family who care for us, as we care for them.

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The two of us, Sundance Film Festival, 2014

I remember coming out of the brilliant film “Silver Linings Playbook” about two people with mental illnesses who became a couple.  As we walked out of the theater, a dear friend of mine said she was worried about them. How would they cope?  She had a point.

We do cope. Sometimes exceedingly well, sometimes not well at all, but on balance, it works.

These little pieces start in Manhattan in the late 1950’s, and end in Los Angeles in 2017, with some  stops in Iowa, Wisconsin, Texas and Arizona.

We hope this helps someone. Or lots of someones. We hope, also, that it can help us untangle the web of two lives, both separate and together, that have been sometimes magical and sometimes a horror show.

We also hope to show that there is a brilliant light and much, much joy at the end of a long dark tunnel. That is our greatest hope.

2 Comments on “Depression His, Depression Hers… Introduction”

  1. Ann Peterson said at 11:27 am on March 22nd, 2018:

    Thank you for your candor, Cindy. It is people like you who can bring mental health issues to the front burner and start to heal those affected.

  2. cindy said at 10:27 pm on March 28th, 2018:

    Thank you Ann!

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