Come With Us Podcast

Mental Health in Relationships: Navigating Grief, Depression and the Journey to Better Sexuality

November 29, 2023 Beth Liebling Episode 155
Come With Us Podcast
Mental Health in Relationships: Navigating Grief, Depression and the Journey to Better Sexuality
Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Join us for an enlightening journey as we uncover the profound impact of mental health on relationships and sexual well-being, alongside our esteemed guest, Dr. Stephanie Sigler, a renowned clinical sexologist and licensed professional counselor. We're taking a deep dive into the intricacies of the mind-body connection, unveiling how therapy can alleviate underlying issues such as trauma, abuse, and mental health disorders, ultimately enhancing overall well-being and sexual function.

Navigating the complex stages of grief is no easy feat; supporting a loved one through this process can be even more challenging. We'll guide you through this labyrinth, discussing the different stages of grief and offering advice on being a pillar of support for those you hold dear. We don't shy away from the delicate topic of suicide, accentuating the vital importance of empathy over judgment. Remember, grief is not constrained by time; the need to provide a safe space for your loved ones during their difficult times is paramount.

Depression is a winding road, often paved with despair. Sharing personal experiences, we'll highlight the differences between situational and chronic depression, aiming to shed light on the complexities of this mental health disorder. Compassion, understanding, and support are essential tools in this fight against the darkness. Above all, we want to remind you that reaching out for help is not a sign of weakness, and there's always someone willing to hold your hand in this journey. Tune in, as we provide resources and encourage everyone to reach out before making life-altering decisions. This isn't just about mental health; it's about human resilience in the face of adversity. Your feelings are valid, and remember, you're never alone.

If you need to talk to someone please use your phone and call 988 or email Dr. Stephanie here:
info@evolveyourintimacy.com

In loving remembrance of Beth's daughter Kiya Darling. 

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Speaker 1:

Are you saying you faked with me?

Speaker 2:

Yeah, I just can't say it.

Speaker 1:

And it says I'm so cool, I'm not wrong Now you're single.

Speaker 2:

What do you know about sexual relations? Is it true that if you don't use it, you're gonna use it? I'm a little worried about being a slut. You're listening to the Come With Us podcast Talking the good, the kinky and the ugly. Here are your hosts, beth and Erin.

Speaker 1:

Hey, all you holes and polls, welcome to Come With Us podcast. I am Erin. Beth is out again today. We will address why she's out and get a little bit deeper into it. I didn't say much when we talked to Sarah Tomchison from Love Honey a couple weeks ago, but I wanted to talk about it today. Beth definitely wants us to talk about it.

Speaker 1:

You're listening to the podcast primarily for men, but we love all of our female listeners as well. All about sex, love, relationships, good stuff, bad stuff, the good, the bad and the ugly. As we say, you can find us on social media at Come With Us podcast for Facebook and Instagram. Come with us pod on Twitter and then I'll give you out the email. So if you want to reach out and ask questions, suggest a topic, send Beth some love. I will give that out at the end. Today we are going to be joined by Dr Stephanie Sigler. She is a mental health therapist. She is amazing. She's great to talk to. Beth loves her, I love her and you guys are looking to love her. So you know what? I'm not going to stall anymore. Let's have her on to talk a little bit. Hey, dr Stephanie, how are you?

Speaker 3:

I'm well, how are you guys?

Speaker 1:

I'm doing well, beth is doing not as well. Before we get too far into everything, I guess we can talk about it. One of Beth's daughters as anybody who's listened knows, she has five children. One of her daughters has been struggling with mental health and depression and just before the Thanksgiving holiday took her own life. Beth has been trying to piece herself back together. I have no idea what it is like. I never could imagine. I don't have any kids, so I couldn't imagine, even from that perspective, the, the. I can't even remember the song. There was an old country song that talked about, you know, a parent doesn't, is never supposed to bury their child or anything like that, and so I couldn't imagine that, much less you know somebody being that close taking their own life or anything like that. So what we're going to do today is we're going to talk about mental health, about grief, about loss, stress, how it affects your libido, how it affects your actual relationship with your primary partner and all that stuff.

Speaker 3:

I just realized I didn't plug my microphone in, so I got it. Now I got it.

Speaker 1:

It actually didn't sound bad, so I think it's okay.

Speaker 3:

But okay, good yeah, I'm just sitting here just kind of chatting away, and I realized, oh, we don't even have a microphone on. All right, we're good now.

Speaker 1:

All right, now we can hear you a little bit better. Like I said, it didn't sound horrible, but I mean it's best to have a better microphone when we're dealing with the audio media. Most of our listeners are listeners. Some people are watching on YouTube, hi, feel free to check us out on Facebook or on YouTube. It's Beth Darling and come with us. If you just search, come with us podcast, you're going to find it. So, dr Stephanie, why don't you introduce yourself? You're going to do a better intro than I could ever, because you nobody knows you better than you.

Speaker 3:

So I am Dr Stephanie. I am a clinical sexologist, licensed professional counselor. I'm licensed in Texas, Arizona and Florida. I work with all types of mental health the good, the bad, the ugly. I specialize in sex therapy.

Speaker 3:

But let's just face it, People come to me, and especially men. Men will not go to mental health counseling until their dick quits working. And as soon as that stops working, then they're like oh well, okay. So they go to the urologist and the urologist is like yeah, here's some blue pills, You're fine. Then they go to, actually they go to their general practitioner. The general practitioner, symptoms, the urologist, nothing changes.

Speaker 3:

And they're like well, maybe it's mental. And then all of a sudden they have an epiphany and they're like oh wow, Maybe I should go talk to somebody. So they come in my office and this is my office, and they sit here and they're like so yeah, my dick's not working. I'm like okay, well, let's talk about that. And then we uncover these layers and layers of trauma and abuse and mental health disorders and depression and anxiety, PTSD, whatever they have, and all of a sudden their dick starts working. So when I say that I'm a sex therapist, sex therapy is only a smidge of what I get to work with, because usually it's so much bigger than just sex.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, and I mean it's. It sounds cliche, but usually when a couple fights there's always somebody who will go. Maybe you're not fighting about the dishes not being done, Maybe there's something deeper to it that goes for like almost all of human life. And your body is like that. I mean, I'm not a doctor, I didn't study bio, I failed biology several times and I never took a psychology class, but the body itself is built to be not everything separate. Your mind interacts with your heart, interacts with your actual cognitive brain, interacts with all of your body, your muscles, everything.

Speaker 2:

Yeah.

Speaker 1:

So yeah, there's. I've known people who have, like you know, when you get to a certain age, your body doesn't perform like it used to. I mean in just physical ways, like oh, I can't lift as much, oh I can't climb up and down a ladder like I always used to every day, and not being pain the next day, and then you know they get crabby. That's. I think that might be part of the reason why some of the older generation gets crabby, is you? You wake up one day and you realize shit, I can't, like it hurts just to get out of bed, like dealing with the aging, and oh damn, I'm. I'm not always going to feel like I'm a million dollars.

Speaker 1:

So yeah, that's just my, you know, armchair psychiatrist way of looking at the world is you know, if you learn to accept that we're all humans and you're going to get old and you're going to start falling apart. That's just what we do.

Speaker 3:

And sex changes. So I teach a class called sex reimagined and I work with, with couples, clients, whoever, individuals who have some sort of pain. Maybe they've had a knee replacement, maybe they've had a hip replacement, maybe their partner has, maybe they just have back pain, maybe they literally wiped their button through their back out. That's happened and they, you know, have this big date coming up. So I teach this class called sex reimagined, where I I legitimately hear your concerns and we come up with a whole new way of having sex for you. The last time I taught it, I'm proud to say that I was called the sex MacGyver because I was pulling out all of this stuff and they're like oh my God, I didn't even think about this, I made a, I made a Walker sexy, I mean, you name it.

Speaker 3:

I can use it as a tool. These are my tools of the trade, and so I definitely make sure that I try to keep all the boomers and gen Xers happy in their sex life, because I know it sucks, because we're all hurting yeah.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, definitely that's okay. Now, one of these days we're going to have to have you back on so I can watch you use a Walker or just random things that I hand you.

Speaker 3:

Oh yeah, you hand me some tools. I can make it sexy, I can turn that into a sex tool, no matter what. And they're not toys, they're tools. There's a difference.

Speaker 1:

Fair enough, fair enough. Yeah, beth doesn't like the word toys either. I kind of do, just because, like everything has been a toy, like a four wheeler to me as a toy. A boat is a toy. Cool, a vibrator, that's a toy, because guess what I get to use it. I spent my money on it to use it, to have fun with you know, but yeah, so I don't play, but it's all helps you have better sex.

Speaker 3:

So a tool is not a vibrator, it's not a dildo, any of that. A tool is legitimately. I have sex chairs. I have. I have actually have several sex chairs. I have walkers, I have. I can make a wheelchair sexy, I mean it's. We can reimagine your sex, so absolutely Cool.

Speaker 1:

All right, well, I like that, that's. That's a lot of fun. Um, let's talk a little bit more about the the not so fun part.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, I was going to say let's circle back to that.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, let's circle back to the fun part later. Um, so far as depression, grief, mental health struggles and stuff like that, I'm sure you said you've seen probably the whole book of it. But what happens, unfortunately, in a case like this, where you have somebody come into you and say I just lost maybe not my partner, but I just lost somebody really close to me to suicide or something like, or even just an accident? I know somebody who thought she was gonna spend the rest of her life with a guy and woke up one morning to a cop calling her, saying hey, he was in an accident and just gone.

Speaker 3:

Life can change in a blink of an eye, and we and I was sharing with you before we started. The reason or how I met Beth and became so just attached to her was one week before I met her, my father had passed away in my arms and then I had to go to this big event. We had to postpone his service and everything because we had to go to this big event that I was working with, where she happened to be at as well, and had to put on this happy, smiling face, and that was terrible. But you know, in a situation like Beth's, well, that is so unplanned for, that is so shocking to your system.

Speaker 3:

It is so unreal, it's just stunning. You can't breathe at some time, at some points because it is so overwhelming, and so I can't imagine what she's going through. I have children and I can't imagine what she's going through. But I can tell you that Beth is a fighter and she's very strong and she will get through this. And I know she gets mad when people tell her that, because right now she doesn't want to. She doesn't want to.

Speaker 1:

No, nobody wants. I mean anytime you lose somebody or something like that, like the last thing you want to hear when things go bad is somebody going well, it's gonna get better. I know that's the worst thing and that's one thing you don't tell your partner, because?

Speaker 3:

and don't ever tell your partner, oh, I understand, unless you truly understand, unless you've had that happen to you. Don't ever tell somebody who's grieving I understand, because, no, you don't, unless you've been through that exact same thing. So for Beth's situation in her partner, or if she had a partner, however, we're gonna frame that her partner should be like you know, I don't know what you're going through. I loved her. I you know her daughter, I adored her because maybe the partner was there with them. But I don't know what it's like because she wasn't my biological child. But I'm gonna sit here with you and I'm just gonna hold space with you whatever you need, and maybe she cries, maybe she gets angry. So the grief cycle is it is. They call it a cycle, but it's more like a squiggly line to yeah, like crazy, like what is it called A beautiful mind?

Speaker 1:

where, like they walked into the room that he had, you know, all those strings attached to everything, trying to figure stuff out, and they were like what? Yeah, that's, that is definitely the emotional not even Absolutely. Because rollercoaster still goes around at the same starting point.

Speaker 3:

And so what happens is is we go through denial, we go through some bargaining, we're gonna go through anger, we're gonna go through shoot, depression, and then the final one is acceptance. But here's the thing I can accept it today, and tomorrow I can be just as pissed off again as, like that, I can accept it today. Tomorrow I might be depressed. Depression, it comes in cycles, it comes in waves. We don't know when it's gonna hit. Wow, I mean just like just speaking from my own recent loss. You know, I was driving to work a couple of weeks ago and I was thinking you know my birth? This was actually. It was last month. My birthday was coming up and I was thinking, yeah, you know, my dad was you know this much older than me. And then it just cycled down to my dad's never gonna have another birthday. And before I could, even in 10 minutes down the road, I'm bawling and can't breathe because all of a sudden it just hit me that I don't have my dad anymore.

Speaker 3:

And so you know that bargaining is kind of taken out of it. Bargaining is when we're like you know, please, just I'll do anything to make it better, please bring them back. There's no, there's no. Take me instead of them, type thing. The, of course, the anger is just, it's just anger. You're angry at everything. You're angry at her child and my dad. I'm angry at the world. How could my higher being, my higher power, do this to me? I mean, there's just so much anger and it doesn't make sense and that's okay. But if you're trying to support your partner through this, understand that they're going to go through these times and it's not going to make sense, it's not going to be pretty and it's going to be pretty much the worst thing you can imagine. And unless you've been through it, you can't imagine it.

Speaker 1:

No, no, God, yeah, just thinking about it, like I've been unbelievably fortunate that I haven't had too many people severely close to me pass away in recent time. I mean, I lost my uncle, who, you know, I shared a room with when I was a kid, to COVID, but like I've been very fortunate my grandparents are still here. You know, I've I had a grandfather that went through a giant cancer scare that we all, like looked around and were like oh crap, and then somehow, I mean he did it because he's stubborn, Because when you know they told us the doctor had said, you know, he has as much to live as my wife just went. He's going to live like three times that long just to go and lick the doctor off and tell him they're dumb ass and they don't know any better.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, and so yeah he's still going strong, which makes me happy, but from the the suicide perspective, it's just and people are going to say different things, like suicide is selfish Suicide.

Speaker 3:

How could they do this to their loved ones? Well, the truth of the matter is is we don't know what they were going through. That individual was going through mentally, emotionally, sometimes physically. You know, you can sit back and say, oh, how could they be so selfish? But in their mind they they were stopping the pain, they were stopping the depression, they were stopping whatever that was was hurting them or hindering them or keeping them from living the best life. And so please, don't tell that to people, don't let your partners if it's a suicide, don't let them hear you say, well, how could they be so selfish? Because you know what. It doesn't matter at that moment. There's not about being selfish. That child thought that was her only way out and she took her life.

Speaker 3:

That is just overwhelming to begin with, but for a parent to have to deal with that, and so, even if you are a partner to someone who is grieving, you have to look at it. There's no time limit on grieving. Number one you can't say gosh, can you be over this already? Stop that shit in a heartbeat, because that's not going to happen. You're not going to get through grieving and it's not going to be a one and done kind of process. I mean, it's going to hit no matter what. Birthdays are kind of come around, holidays are kind of come around. She's going to remember, or your partner is going to remember. Oh, this, a smell, a smell will trigger them. Anything can trigger that grief cycle and what you have to do is just be present and don't try to fix it.

Speaker 3:

The number one thing I suggest to couples who are grieving is for their partner, when they're trying to talk to them, is to say do you need me to listen or do you need me to help you fix a problem? And then just shut up and let your partner tell you. Most of the time, if they're grieving, they're going to be like I just need you to listen, okay. And then there will be times where, like you know what, I can't handle this. I need you to fix it for me because I can't. I emotionally, physically, mentally, can't deal with this. Okay, and you fix this for me. But if you're going into every conversation trying to fix something and you're not asking them, hey, you know, do you need me to listen or do you need me to fix something for you or help in some way, then you're completely I don't want to say manipulating, but you're manipulating that relationship to where it's all about you.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, and I mean this goes beyond losing a loved one or anything like that. I've been honest about you know. It took me a long time. I've been married almost 10 years. I've been with my wife for 13, but it took me years. It took me, I mean. We've been doing this for almost four years now.

Speaker 1:

I was about two years into doing this podcast, which so eight years into marriage, before it finally clicked to me of stop trying to fix every like. Just sit there and shut up and let her get mad, yell, scream, whatever, and then deal with things Don't like. Don't let my wife get mad about something, you know. Something upset her on the drive home, something upset her from work, something she missed out on, you know, buying something that she really wanted and it got sold out. Or she missed a concert, or something. I had to learn to shut up and not think of a way we can fix it, not a crap. Well, your favorite band's coming to town. We won't be here, you know what. We'll fly to Europe to see them just to sit like. That's not logical, that's not real. Don't, don't, don't try to be Mr Fix it, which guys we are programmed to kind of be that way.

Speaker 3:

That is what you're programmed, in a way, to do, and it's hard sometimes to sit back and say, okay, what can I? Can I just listen? And even then, when you're trying to listen, it's going to be hard because your, your natural inclination is too fixed, so you're going to have to remind yourself several times to shut up, just shut up, just listen.

Speaker 1:

And I mean as far as the actual relationship goes between two people, how, aside from being there for the emotional, what like, if a, if, beth, we're in a relationship right now, aside from, you know, letting her her grieve and do her thing, what kind of a I guess not influencer or what kind of thing would you suggest towards her on how to maybe lean better on her partner to help?

Speaker 3:

Definitely trust your partner, trust that they have your best interest at heart and they're not trying to hurt you. Hopefully, I would definitely suggest that you have to ask for help. You have to use your voice and sometimes you can't. Sometimes you can't say this is what I need, because you don't even know what you need. And so I've had clients come up with different kind of signals, like a red, green and a yellow flag, and so if their partner comes in and they're like, how are you doing? And it's a red flag, and then there's questions on the flag, you know what do you? Can I get you something to drink? Have you eaten today? Have you bathed today? Have you just done basic self care? Because that is so overwhelming at times that you just can't even do it. You don't even want a basic self care. Eating why? My daughter didn't eat, so why should I? My daughter's, you know not eating, so why should I be eating? It's this mental game that you go through and it's just one thing after another. And so just making sure their basic care is taken care of like a bath, a bath shit, that's huge Eating. Making sure that they're getting enough water. Also, don't give them alcohol. Alcohol is not the answer. So if they're like, oh, I just need a glass of wine, okay, well, you know what? Let's, let's drink some. Let's. How about we drink some water first, you know? And if they want that glass of wine, great, give them that glass of wine instead of glass of water right beside them, because you just need to encourage it. Whatever you have to do, you know, refrain from using drugs and alcohol, and encouraging that, because that's their first sometimes it's some people's first go to because they want to numb the pain.

Speaker 3:

You have to sit in the suck period. If you want to get through it, you have to sit in it. You have to really process all of your feelings, and your feelings don't make sense and you have to understand that. That's okay. Your feelings don't make sense. None of this makes sense, none of it, and that's okay too. So being able to have those flags, like a yellow flag, is, you know, maybe and, like I said, there's different questions you can put on them to where you, when you hold it up, your partner can ask okay, or maybe you can just even point to it. You are so overwhelmed, it's okay, it's okay. Sometimes the words aren't going to come to you, and sometimes the tears aren't going to stop flowing. There are times when you you're not even going to be able to breathe, and you just have to realize that, unfortunately, this is part of the process.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, it's. It's really, really shitty when you feel like I just want to help. Like I told you, off the air, I saw Beth the one and only time, for about three, five minutes and all I wanted to do is just wrap her in a hug and help and do something to. You know, if I, like I used to do when I would babysit my sisters or my cousins or something, if they're crying to get a baby to smile, all you got to do is like run into a wall or something goofy and like that inkling came out and I just sat there in the car when I was getting ready to leave and I was like I just I want to do something. I want to be able to do, I don't care what it is, but something to make her, you know, put faith in me that I can help and I can do something, but it's. I don't even have words to put on it of how difficult it could be.

Speaker 3:

You feel helpless.

Speaker 1:

Yeah.

Speaker 3:

And the best thing you can do for her is, you know, just say, hey, I'm going to come over and I'm going to mow your yard. I'm going to come over and I'm going to maybe do some laundry for you. We don't have to talk, I'm just going to be here, I'm going to come over and make sure that you know I'm going to cook a meal for you. No talking necessary, you don't even have to get out of bed, you don't even have to get off the couch, whatever. You don't have to do anything. You don't even have to tell me hi, thank you, fuck you, nothing. You just let me do it for you. And sometimes those things speak love in ways that you can't imagine, and they speak appreciation, and they speak acceptance and they speak shit. I can't think of the word. I'm going through all these words and I can't think it's support. That's the word I was looking for. Support, more than anything, is just to be there in that space with them.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, all right, we've talked a little bit about what are you doing when you're when you have a loved one or your loved one lost someone. I kind of want to focus now a little bit more on Kaia, who is best daughter. Um, dealing with depression. Uh, I'm sure you've said you you've dealt with plenty of clients who've dealt with it and it's you know, of course. They came in and went, oh, my dick, doesn't work. And you went, uh, okay, and then I'm sure it probably took you, being a professional, about 45 seconds into them talking to go oh yeah, you've just got a depressed like there's depression that's kind of hampering everything else that's going on in your body.

Speaker 3:

Sure, um, but yeah, I mean well, she was depressed and she had been struggling with depression for a while, and there are people who were going to think, well, why didn't Beth step in and do something? Why didn't Beth get her help? I'm here to clear that rumor right now. Beth was doing everything she could to get her help. Yep, and it doesn't matter. Sometimes it's just not enough.

Speaker 3:

The pain doesn't go away. I have struggled with depression my entire life. It is a I have, um, just chronic depression. It comes and it goes.

Speaker 3:

Some days my brain will tell me and it's it's fascinating because I tell this to people who've never experienced it they're like what? But my brain will tell me I am shit, I am nothing, I need to run my car into that, into that ditch, or I just need to take this bottle of pills because I will never be anything. And I I mean, I know that I'm not that, I'm not that, what my, what my brain tells me. But I get into these places where my brain actually will start telling me this and it gets so dark and so convoluted that sometimes you start believing it. And yes, you can go to inpatient care, you can go to outpatient care, you can talk to your best friend, your mom, you can be on medication, and sometimes all of that together just does not work. And the only way that her daughter felt that she could silence the pain was to take her own life. And as heartbreaking as that is, at least now she's at peace.

Speaker 3:

Yeah and I choose to believe that. I choose to believe that her mind is quiet, her mind she's, she's in a place where she is at peace, wherever. Wherever anybody else listening to this chooses to believe, that's fine. But for Beth and I, you know, we decide. We choose that she's at peace. And if you have somebody that you know she was a, she was an educator, she, she was around her students. She was always smiling you could read the obituary that Beth wrote and she just was the light of everybody's life life. No one could understand how this could happen.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, and that obituary is actually pasted into the show notes, so give it a read.

Speaker 1:

Keep clean next by yeah or keep somebody there that you can hug, because you're going to get through the end of it and immediately want one and you're going to want to tell. You're going to all of a sudden pick up your phone and start wanting to tell every single person close to you that, hey, just send them a text. I love you kind of thing. But even with depression, I mean you. You talk about. You know your mind, and playing tricks on you is, I guess, the way to put it. It is it's your mind playing tricks on you and it's your mind telling you that not only are you know you worthless and you can't, you know you're not, you're not good enough, you're not going to amount to anything, stuff like that but it also tricks you into thinking that everybody around you is.

Speaker 1:

Life would be just so much better off you know, if there was a button that made you disappear from the earth, you never existed. Yeah, that button should have been pressed a long time ago. And you know, everybody's going to be happier when I'm gone. It's and it hurts too, because you're sitting there and you're, you're fighting this.

Speaker 1:

You're fighting those voices in your head that are telling you you know, not only are you just a bad person, you're not worthy of love, you're not worthy of affection, stuff like that, but the you know, your, your best friend your, your, your mom, your dad, your sisters, your brothers, your grandparents, everybody they're just, yeah, they're gonna pick up and go on and they're actually gonna be happy now that you're gone because they don't have to deal with you or they don't have to watch after you and stuff like that, and it's just it does get better. Uh, I've never been diagnosed with clinic, with depression or anything like that. I know my parents. My parents took me to a psychiatrist years and years ago and he tried to tell me I was depressed. And then we found out, probably about 30 years later, that yeah, I mean he was just kind of forcing his patients into doing things so he could prescribe things.

Speaker 1:

Um, but I remember being a 13 year old and I, I mean, I was 13, I was going through puberty, my parents were getting a divorce, I had the front row seat to all of it and what was going wrong. And then they sat me down in front of this doctor who was telling me you're depressed, you're depressed, I think we should put you on pills. And I finally lost it on him as a 13 year old and I don't think he ever told my parents. I told him, fuck you. But I definitely told him because he said you're depressed. I said I'm not depressed, I'm angry and I'm gonna fucking kick your old ass. Um, and I, I get down, but I again I don't think it's, it goes, that's human nature.

Speaker 3:

We all get down. We've all experienced some level of depression. Depression is on a spectrum. So we can get depressed because our, our best friend is pissed off at us, right, we can experience some sort of depression because our parents got divorced. But it's, it's situational and it's temporary. When it becomes dangerous is when it's chronic and it never goes away. There is situational depression and then there's the chronic depression that just lives within you. Sometimes it can be debated if it's genetic, you know, if it's the nature versus nurture. All of that it can be debated all day long. But it doesn't matter. That person has it and what are we going to do to help them?

Speaker 3:

And so I know with Beth's daughter. She had been in lots and lots of of care. She was surrounded by family, she was surrounded by friends who loved her, she was surrounded by students who loved her. She was in inpatient, she was in a outpatient. She had that support and I'm not going to say I will never say it wasn't enough, because it was enough but she couldn't silence the voices in her head. She couldn't. She couldn't take the pain away. All of that support was not alleviating the pain she was feeling and and whatever pain that might have been.

Speaker 3:

Some people are depressed because of actual physical pain. Some people are depressed and then that causes actual physical pain, you know, and so we don't know. We don't know what was going through her mind. We don't know. We can speculate, you know, and I'm sure Beth is doing that plenty.

Speaker 3:

But if your partner or somebody you love is going through depression, the best thing you can do is sit down with them and say just like with grief I don't know what you're going through, but I'm going to sit here until until number one you kick my ass, or number two, you know you. You need something from me, or you may not need anything at all, but I'm going to be here. I'm going to be here for you because sometimes you just need somebody in your space. I'm not saying that she didn't have that, because I know she did. And people who have accepted that that's their only way out become happy. They become a little bit more lighthearted right before because they've accepted the fact that they know what's going to happen yep, um, that it's going to sound like I'm minimalizing or anything like that.

Speaker 1:

Like I said, I don't think I would actually be classified as like having a clinical version of it, but I was really, really down until I started, you know, until I fell in love with my wife and I know my wife my whole life almost, I mean, since I was a kid. But something clicked with that. And then this is gonna sound really really dumb. Everybody who suffers from a depression is gonna look at there's, gonna throw some at the wind, at the radio or anything like that and say, aaron, you have your fucking idiot. Matt Stone and Trey Parker kind of Put it best and it really helped me.

Speaker 1:

There's an episode where Stan gets really down and becomes this like goth emo kid and everything is pain and I just can't wait to die, kind of thing, and I mean I was that kid growing up because I was, you know, that goth emo kid. But then butters gets depressed and he starts tell it like Stan starts telling him well, the only way is like to accept the darkness and stuff like that. And Butters looks at him and goes, why? Like I can appreciate the sadness because I know that there's light at the end, like there will be, he goes. I I appreciate the happiness even more because I know when I'm sad that yeah, it hurts it, it's a dark tunnel, but there will be and I I don't know why a fucking cartoon made me kind of that. That stuck with my head forever.

Speaker 3:

Speak to you forever.

Speaker 1:

Decade now, but anytime the worst things that are happening around my life and I feel like my life is crashing down, I just that that scene plays over and over my head and eventually, like I Guess cognitive or a rational brain goes yeah, cartoons, right, dummy. Like, yes, you're, this hurts, this sucks. Kind of like you said you have to sit in the suck, my brain is kind of weird where it'll be. Yeah, like kind of not enjoy but Relish the fact that you, you can feel this. Yeah, you have the emotional spectrum that you can feel the lowest point in the world to you, but there will be something else.

Speaker 1:

So, like I said, anybody who's you know going through clinical depression or you know seeing a doctor on medication or anything I was probably yelling at me going, it's not that easy, it's not that easy and I get it. It's not that easy for everybody. But maybe there's somebody else dumb enough out there like me who goes. Oh, yeah, I mean. Yeah, I guess being down it hurts, but that I can appreciate the hurt because I feel the highs when they get there.

Speaker 3:

I I am a silver lining kind of person. I have experienced more trauma in my lifetime than a Normal or shit anybody should. I mean, I Could sit and tell you my story and you'd be like what. And people think that when they first meet me and they first start hearing my story that I'm a pathological liar because it is so obscene, it's so crazy and it just it is. It's my life. I have to find the silver lining because if I don't, I would have been dead years ago, and so that's the optimistic of the optimistic side of me, the optimist. And then, of course, I have the pessimist who lives in me. It's like my angel and devil on my shoulder right.

Speaker 3:

So the pessimist, comes in and they're like well, you know, that's the brain telling me you should, you would be better off dead. I can't believe you did this, I can't believe that you would want that and da-da-da-da and all that bullshit. But, like you said there, there's some good somewhere. We just have to find it. And Sometimes I can't, I couldn't find it.

Speaker 3:

It was my daughter that helped me find it or, you know, it was Somebody else that would come along and say something. A friend of mine. You talk about a cartoon. I Lost something.

Speaker 3:

It was so weird, it was random, I don't even I lost something it. And a friend of mine said don't worry, it'll turn green. And I was like what, what are you talking about? And she goes oh, my dad always says when you lose something or if something bad happens, it'll turn green. And I I said on that for months and months and months. And Sure, I mean sure, sure enough, I found that whatever I was looking for. But now I just say it's okay, it'll turn green, whatever's gonna happen, it'll turn green. And this person doesn't even know that. That stuck with me as hard as it did. I should probably tell her. But you know, it's definitely just that, that mindset of it's okay, it'll turn green and I'm gonna sit in this suck. But there's something on the other side and I have to believe that for me and some people just can't. And when I can't, I have somebody there who can, and that's usually my daughter.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, and it's good to put people around you who you know make you smile, can can do the things that get your mind off of you know the darkness, the, you know that pit of depression and stuff like that. It's good to have somebody there who's close enough to know when to distract you and when to you know, like you said, hey, do you drink any water today? No, okay, we'll drink water, and that's something that I again learned Lay it. You know, closer to this time in my life where you get, if you feel weird, you feel grouchy, you feel angry or something like that, and you just can't figure out why, show me a couple bottles of water, your, your mood improves really, really quickly.

Speaker 1:

Water is one of the like coolest things in the world and I understand why ancient civilizations worshiped it so much, because when you're hydrated you feel a million times, but you could feel like a million bucks. If you're fully hydrated, you feel even better. So that's just my little rant on water, because I think none of us drink enough water. Nobody, very few friggin people do, and I have to force myself to do it sometimes, but when I do it, yeah, it's, it's amazing. It's. It's weird how Sun shines and things are brighter when I'm, when I know my body is fully hydrated and I feel like you know hey, I talk about feeling like you're getting old. I feel like I'm not as old when I am fully hydrated. It's weird I.

Speaker 3:

Get it actually 100%. So when you said, like making sure that they're hydrated, making sure that they're not in a dark room, making sure that they're getting some sunlight Vitamin D does a lot for us, water does a lot for us, these natural elements making sure they're taking vitamins, their medication, I Mean, sometimes they're so overwhelmed they won't even lay it out, just go over to their house and say, okay, let's, I'm just gonna lay it out for you so you can just put it in those little packet things and go and Every day we know that you're taking it and they don't. Just opening a bottle sometimes is so overwhelming. So even that little thing could help so much for somebody. Yeah, but being able to have all of these Questions for people saying you know, you know, what can I do for you? What have you had this, have you had that? And then sometimes you don't even need to ask that, you just need to put it. But play the food in front of them, put a bottle of water in front of them, like I said, divide up their medication.

Speaker 3:

There are so many different things. If they're people, you might have someone who is deflecting from not wanting to experience their emotions and they're just wanting to have sex or wanting to party and they're wanting to just Avoid all of that. Encourage them to feel those feelings, encourage them to Really feel whatever they need to feel and, again, just be in their space and, like I said for you, I mean, you made cookies because chocolate chip cookies are best favorite and you took them to her and you wanted to run into A wall and be silly because that's what you knew, that's what that's. You know what people cry. You do something silly, they laugh. Damn, everything's fixed.

Speaker 1:

Yep.

Speaker 3:

You can't fix this. But what you can do is say, hey, beth, I'm coming over, I'm just gonna, I'm just gonna mow your yard you don't even have to come out, just gonna. You know, I'm gonna drop this off at the door. Hey, I'm just gonna come in and cook for you. And the best thing that you can do oh my gosh, I can't believe I didn't mention this earlier Is to listen to all the stories about their loved one that they've lost.

Speaker 3:

Listen to all of them. I can't tell you how many times I have told the same story about my father. In the last, my dad died in June. And in the last five, six months, the same stories. But people listen, and when they listen it makes me feel like I'm I'm still, he's still here with me and it's connected. And so if she wants to tell the same story over and over and over about her daughter, listen, it never gets old. You listen to it like it's brand new and it's just always encouraged them. Well, tell me, tell me some of your favorite memories of her. What were the you know what? Tell me some of the positive things that you guys did as a child. Tell me how she was as a child, tell me, you know, keep that positive, that positive energy flowing and letting your loved one know that you want to know about that person, because that person is not going to die Just because they they've taken their own life or just because they passed away. We're gonna keep that memory and that love alive forever yep, 100%.

Speaker 1:

well, thank you for being here with us, dr Stephanie. Anybody who wants to find you and your work Can go to evolve with your intimacycom evolve your intimacy. All of your intimacy. Yeah, I said wrong. Evolve or anythingcom. You know what? I've got a better way of doing this. I can put a banner down here so everybody on YouTube can see it. Yes, it's going in the show notes. All that fun stuff, um.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, if you need anything, definitely. You know I see clients all over the world. I am licensed in texas, florida, in arizona, um. But I have a way where I can Coach and go all over the world, and so I see clients all over the world. And it's not just about yes, I specialize in sex therapy, but that's not what it's about. I work with depression, ptsd, you name it.

Speaker 3:

If you're going through something, you are not alone. I can guarantee you that because I'm here, and I can guarantee you that more than likely nine times out of 10, I've been through what you're going through, except the loss of a child. Actually, well, I can't say that. I had a second trimester miscarriage. So I have experienced a loss of a child, but not a loss of a living, breathing out of my stomach child. So that's one that I cannot, and you know, really connect with you on. But everything else, shit. I'm telling you I've got it and there's not many people in the world who just Understand you and I feel like I, there's very few that I don't understand, and that's because I, because of my trauma, because if I didn't go through all of this, how could I be a good therapist?

Speaker 3:

Yeah, that's understandable not saying that the therapists who haven't been through all of this is not good. Just that's my disclaimer. That's just a way to feel good about my my past.

Speaker 1:

I mean that, you said it. You're silver lining. I mean that's. You use that to find a way to help people who have gone through things?

Speaker 1:

Yeah and that's that's a really honorable and amazing thing to do for others. By the way, if you want to drop a note to us, it's come with us. Confessions at gmailcom. You probably know this because I've said it a million times in in the past on episodes.

Speaker 1:

But one more thing before we get out of here if you're feeling down, if you're feeling depressed, if you just need somebody to talk to, at least for all of our listeners in the US I don't know if it works in for our European listeners or our listeners that we have, you know, in Asia, africa, anywhere else around the World, because we do have listeners all over the world if you're in the US, I 988 on your phone. Pick up your cell phone. 988, hit send. It's gonna connect you to somebody and it's gonna connect you to somebody who wants to talk to you and wants to you know, help you, find that silver lining in life and wants to help you get through what you're going through. So 988 send, just use it if you need it. There's no shame in talking to somebody who has been through something and knows how to Help you. Again, like I said, find the silver linings.

Speaker 3:

Yeah, there's no shame in reaching out for help. There's no shame in the middle of the night, if you just can't take it anymore and that's your last your. The last thing that you can think of is this is what I have to do pick up the cell phone first, dial that number and just talk to somebody before you follow through with your plans.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, I mean, what do you got to lose? Send me an email telling me I was wrong after you talked to somebody.

Speaker 3:

Please me too.

Speaker 1:

Yeah.

Speaker 3:

I mean, and if you can't, if you're not in the United States and y'all don't have that and this is, you're listening to this somewhere else Send me an email, but also make me a promise that you're not going to do anything until after, until I respond, or give me the opportunity To respond before you think of doing anything negative. But there's always that let me have the chance to just talk to you. So sometimes people will send me emails or like, yep, I'm feeling this way and I think that this is my last, my last leg, and and I, all of my clients know if that's what you're feeling and, of course, if you're one of my clients I have, you have a tech, I have two phones and you have text messaging access to me. They know they can send me a message, but the whole thing is is you cannot do anything until after I reply. Let me have the chance to reply first, um, let me have the chance to to talk to you before you do anything, and so that has worked very well for me and my clients.

Speaker 3:

Um, I Thankfully have not had a client take their own life. I've had several students do that and, um, that is not easy at all. So, but definitely Reach out. It's okay, your feelings are valid. Whatever you're feeling is very valid. It is, it is honest. It is true. No one's going to tell you that it's not, but we are going to tell you that we can listen, we can give you advice, we can do whatever you need to do. Just just reach out to somebody first exactly, dr Stephanie Ziegler.

Speaker 1:

Thank you for being here with us. Uh, evolve your intimacycom. Check her out there will be a link in the show notes as well and also post your email as well, if you're okay with that, in the show notes or anybody who needs to reach out and ask questions or anything like that.

Speaker 1:

Thank you for being here, um you, we're gonna have you on again, when, uh, when beth gets through this because she, she will we both know that she will um, and we're gonna have all we're gonna have you on, we'll actually talk. You know the sexy fun stuff too.

Speaker 3:

That's fine. We have all kinds of time for that. I just think that I was able to, to really be the one to help with this, because beth did help me so much, even in the short time that I've known her.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, so everybody. Uh, if you're a praying person, keep praying for beth and her entire family. Um, I mean not only that, like I, I've known, I know quite a few of her five kids. There's four of them that lost a sibling that they grew up with.

Speaker 3:

There's students who lost a teacher. There's best friends who lost a friend. There's people who lost a mentor. It, the ripple effect is so great.

Speaker 1:

Yep. If you need help, seek it out. Nine eight, eight send. The national suicide hotline is there to talk to you. Just like dr Stephanie said, don't do anything until you dial that and talk to somebody on the other end. I hope everybody has a great week. We will be back next week. Um, I'm talking about more sexy fun stuff.

Speaker 1:

Yeah, yeah, I'm working on lining up a couple of a couple of guests that you know, either peak my interest or peak somebody's interest who emailed us. Uh, if you, if you have an idea and you want to help me out on something you want to hear about, come with us. Confessions at gmailcom, shoot me an email. Uh, thank you for being here, dr Stephanie again. Uh, everybody else, have a great week and we will see you next time.

Speaker 3:

Thanks, guys. Thanks for listening to the come with us podcast.

Speaker 2:

Be sure to follow us on social media at come with us podcast and send in your questions, comments and confessions to come with us. Confessions at gmailcom. Until next time, keep it fun, flirty and naughty.

Exploring Mental Health and Sexual Relationships
Supporting a Partner Through Grief
Supporting a Loved One With Depression
Understanding Depression and Finding Hope
Finding the Silver Lining
Positive Memories and Mental Health Support