The Depression Files
Al Interviews Dr. Derek Chechak | PhD in Social Work, BA, BSW, MSW & RSW

Al Interviews Dr. Derek Chechak | PhD in Social Work, BA, BSW, MSW & RSW

April 21, 2019

In this episode, Al interviews social worker, Dr. Derek Chechak (recorded 2-25-19). Derek shares his own struggles with mental illness that began as panic attacks from the young age of sixteen years-old. He then describes having his first bout of major depression at twenty and a second one at age twenty-seven.

Derek talks about medication and other types of therapies. Although Derek had genetic testing done to help determine the best type of medications to treat his depression, he's been on fifteen different ones over the last five years. He's also describes having Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) treatment.

Derek shares his thoughts regarding a strong interest of his; workplace wellness and the impacts of bullying and/or harassment by an employer.

You can find Derek on Twitter @Dr_Dissonance.

If you enjoyed this episode, please click the 'like' button. Also, please take a moment to comment and rate the show on iTunes. Finally, don't miss an episode! Click the subscribe/follow button now!

In addition to The Depression Files podcast, you can find Al's blog at TheDepressionFiles.com. There, you can also find out how to work with Al as a coach or schedule him for a public speaking event. You will also find Al on Twitter @allevin18.

Al Interviews Gabe Howard | Bipolar Speaker, Writer & Podcaster

Al Interviews Gabe Howard | Bipolar Speaker, Writer & Podcaster

April 7, 2019

In this episode, Al interviews Gabe Howard, bipolar speaker, writer, and podcaster (recorded 3-11-19). Gabe describes what it was like living with undiagnosed bipolar disorder for many years, as well as life after his diagnosis. From debilitating depressions that included suicidal thoughts and kept him in bed for days at a time, to manias that included hypersexuality and drug use. Gabe also shares his thoughts on managing medications and their possible side effects.

Gabe is a writes for PsychCentral and is the co-host of PsychCentral's two podcasts: 1) The Psych Central Show and, 2) A Bipolar, a Schizophrenic, and a Podcast. Gabe is also the author of Mental Illness is an Asshole: And Other Observations.

If you enjoyed this episode, please click the 'like' button. Also, please take a moment to comment and rate the show on iTunes. Finally, don't miss an episode! Click the subscribe/follow button now!

In addition to The Depression Files podcast, you can find Al's blog at TheDepressionFiles.com. There, you can also find out how to work with Al as a coach or schedule him for a public speaking event. You will also find Al on Twitter @allevin18.

Al Interviews Joe Barksdale (again) | NFL Offensive Tackle

Al Interviews Joe Barksdale (again) | NFL Offensive Tackle

March 24, 2019

In this episode, Al interviews Joe Barksdale, NFL offensive tackle (recorded 3-13-19). Joe returns to the show approximately one year after his first interview on The Depression Files. Being in a much better place mentally than he was one year ago, Joe discusses the abuse from his parents that led him to a first suicide attempt at the very young age of nine years old. Joe talks stigma, football, and music. Hear about the therapy he's been going to for the past year that includes Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR) and how it has supported him in working through some more recent trauma that Joe has experienced.

I would like to note that two days after my interview with Joe, he called me to inform me of a brain scan that confirmed his belief that his depression has absolutely & conclusively no link to Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE) whatsoever. He was informed by the doctors that if they were not informed of his status as a professional football player, they would never have guessed it from his scans. Joe's belief that CTE has no connection to his depression has been an important piece of Joe's advocacy.

In addition to press releases and news regarding Joe, you can learn more about him and hear his music on his website at josephbarksdale.com. You can also purchase his first album, Butterflies, Rainbows & Moonbeams on Amazon.

If you enjoyed this episode, please click the 'like' button. Also, please take a moment to comment and rate the show on iTunes. Finally, don't miss an episode! Click the subscribe/follow button now!

In addition to The Depression Files podcast, you can find Al's blog at TheDepressionFiles.com. There, you can also find out how to work with Al as a coach or schedule him for a public speaking event. You will also find Al on Twitter @allevin18.

Al Interviews David Soto Jr. | Author, Podcaster & Retired US Air Force Master Sergeant

Al Interviews David Soto Jr. | Author, Podcaster & Retired US Air Force Master Sergeant

March 10, 2019

In this episode, Al interviews author, podcaster, and retired US Air Force Master Sergeant, David Soto Jr. (recorded 2-21-19). After retiring from the US Air Force, David spent close to three years traveling and living in a van. The excitement quickly unraveled and, having a great deal of time alone, David did a significant amount of introspection. He came to realize that he needed help. He finally realized that he had experienced a fair amount of anger throughout his life, he had long assumed he had ADD, and he eventually realized that he had pulled himself out of what seemed to have been depression on several occasions.

David sought out support from the Veterans Association and believed that most of his troubles were past him. However, after many years apart from a woman he could not forget, David reunited with her recently. They quickly conceived a child and became engaged. While David believed he was now living the life he had dreamed of, he fell into the deepest depression he had ever experienced; one that included suicidal thoughts that he could not escape!

You can find David's blog posts on his Medium site. You can also find out more about David on his personal site at DavidSotoWrites.com. You'll find all of his published books, such as his best-selling Pass Your PT Test: An Unconventional Guide to Passing the Air Force Physical Fitness Assessment and his latest fictional novel Los Chocolates De Esperanza Diamanté: A Tale of Love, Death, and Chocolate, here at David's Amazon author page. Finally, you'll also find David on Twitter @davidesotojr.

If you enjoyed this episode, please click the 'like' button. Also, please take a moment to comment and rate the show on iTunes. Finally, don't miss an episode! Click the subscribe/follow button now!

In addition to The Depression Files podcast, you can find Al's blog at TheDepressionFiles.com. There, you can also find out how to work with Al as a coach or schedule him for a public speaking event. You will also find Al on Twitter @allevin18.

Al Interviews Sean Adam | Inspirational Speaker & Podcaster

Al Interviews Sean Adam | Inspirational Speaker & Podcaster

February 24, 2019

In this episode, Al interviews inspirational speaker and podcaster, Sean Adam (recorded 2-6-19). Sean describes how shame prevented him from reaching out for any type of professional help through his first four bouts of major depression. Through time, books, self-exploration and professional support, Sean was able to realize how the romantic relationships he chose to be in (hero-victim) impacted his mental health. Rather than focus on being with and supporting others, he finally realized that he needed to focus on his own physical and mental health. Hear his journey through his five bouts of major depression and his path to recovery.

You can find out much more about Sean on his website www.togetherwerisespeaking.com. In addition, you'll find him on Instagram @adambomb8 and @wildheartspodcast. You can also find him on Facebook. Finally, The Wild Hearts Podcast, in which Sean co-hosts, is hosted on YouTube.

If you enjoyed this episode, please click the 'like' button. Also, please take a moment to comment and rate the show on iTunes. Finally, don't miss an episode! Click the subscribe/follow button now!

In addition to The Depression Files podcast, you can find Al's blog at TheDepressionFiles.com. There, you can also find out how to work with Al as a coach or schedule him for a public speaking event. You will also find Al on Twitter @allevin18.

Al Interviews Jeremy Schneider, MFT | Marriage and Family Therapist, Author, Public Speaker & Childhood Trauma Survivor

Al Interviews Jeremy Schneider, MFT | Marriage and Family Therapist, Author, Public Speaker & Childhood Trauma Survivor

February 10, 2019

In this episode, Al interviews Jeremy Schneider, marriage and family therapist, author, public speaker, and childhood trauma survivor (recorded 1-28-19). Jeremy speaks very openly and honestly about a significant amount of childhood trauma that he had experienced up until the age of eighteen. He describes how the trauma has impacted his life and the incredible amount of work that he has done, and continues to do, in order to work through this trauma. Jeremy also describes the debilitating nature of some of the depression that he has experienced.

In addition to working as a marriage and family therapist, Jeremy is an author. He wrote Fatherhood in 40-Minute Snapshots, which explores the challenges and joys of being a dad while sharing insights and a modern perspective on fatherhood. Jeremy also has a free eBook: Fatherhood Snapshots: The Early Years. Learn more about Jeremy and find more of his writing on his website at www.jgs.net. Finally, you'll find Jeremy on Twitter @JGS_Author.

If you enjoyed this episode, please click the 'like' button. Also, please take a moment to comment and rate the show on iTunes. Finally, don't miss an episode! Click the subscribe/follow button now!

In addition to The Depression Files podcast, you can find Al's blog at TheDepressionFiles.com. There, you can also find out how to work with Al as a coach or schedule him for a public speaking event. You will also find Al on Twitter @allevin18.

Al Interviews Jacob Moore | Filmmaker and Founder of NoStigmas Mental Health Support Community

Al Interviews Jacob Moore | Filmmaker and Founder of NoStigmas Mental Health Support Community

January 27, 2019

In this episode, Al interviews Jacob Moore, filmmaker and founder of NoStigmas mental health support community (recorded 1-23-19). After losing his father at the young age of six, Jake struggled with undiagnosed, debilitating depression and anxiety for much of his life. Panic attacks related to his physical health were frequent and he eventually turned to booze and drugs to self-medicate. After working as a bartender that supported his drinking habit, he landed an incredible job opportunity that allowed him to make six figures before the age of thirty. However, unable to get the partying lifestyle under control, he lost his job and escaped to Argentina. Hear about an odd twist on the flight to Argentina that was life-changing!

Jake has now founded NoStigmas.org, a mental health support community. You'll hear Jake describe his holistic 5 Bridges wellness plan to support one's mental health. You can learn more about Jake at jacobmoore.com. You'll also find him on Instagram @Jacob Moore. In addition, he's on Twitter @nostigmas and Facebook @nostigmas.

If you enjoyed this episode, please click the 'like' button. Also, please take a moment to comment and rate the show on iTunes. Finally, don't miss an episode! Click the subscribe/follow button now!

In addition to The Depression Files podcast, you can find Al's blog at TheDepressionFiles.com. You can also find him on Twitter @allevin18.

Al Interviews Nick Emeigh | Director of Outreach and Development for NAMI Bucks County, Pennsylvania

Al Interviews Nick Emeigh | Director of Outreach and Development for NAMI Bucks County, Pennsylvania

January 13, 2019

In this episode, Al interviews Nick Emeigh, Director of Outreach and Development for NAMI Bucks County, Pennsylvania (recorded 11-19-18). Nick, who is diagnosed with Schizoaffective Disorder, anxiety, depression, and OCD candidly shares his story that includes several hospitalizations, suicide attempts, self-medicating with heavy drugs, an arrest and much more! Nick explains the differences between Schizoaffective Disorder and Schizophrenia. He also describes the stigma he often feels when he mentions the diagnosis of Schizoaffective disorder.

You can read more about Nick on the Bucks County, PA NAMI website and you'll also find him on FaceBook.

If you enjoyed this episode, please click the 'like' button. Also, please take a moment to comment and rate the show on iTunes. Finally, don't miss an episode! Click the subscribe/follow button now!

In addition to The Depression Files podcast, you can find Al's blog at TheDepressionFiles.com. You can also find him on Twitter @allevin18.

Al Interviews T.J. Smith | Hockey Coach & Mental Health Consultant

Al Interviews T.J. Smith | Hockey Coach & Mental Health Consultant

December 30, 2018

In this episode, Al interviews T.J. Smith, hockey coach and mental health consultant (recorded 11-5-17). T.J. estimates that he struggled in silence with depression for over ten years before getting the support he needed. T.J. struggled with racing thoughts that greatly impaired his sleep, a gambling addiction, and binge drinking. After reaching a breaking point and realizing he needed help, T.J. was diagnosed with major depression, anxiety, and OCD. T.J. had three inpatient hospitalizations in a relatively short period of time. He describes a day of inpatient, as well as what it's like to receive Electric Convulsive Therapy (ECT).

T.J.'s most recent work is that of creating a peer support group in St. Anthony, Newfoundland and Labrador. There have recently been a couple of articles written about T.J.: New Peer Support Group in St. Anthony Bridging Gap in Mental Health Services and Mental Health Support Group Starting in St. Anthony. You can find T.J. on Twitter @TJSmith61 and you can reach him by email at teejay_68@hotmail.com.

If you enjoyed this episode, please click the 'like' button. Also, please take a moment to comment and rate the show on iTunes. Finally, don't miss an episode! Click the subscribe/follow button now!

In addition to The Depression Files podcast, you can find Al's blog at TheDepressionFiles.com. You can also find him on Twitter @allevin18.

Al Interviews Michael Kuhne | Community College English Instructor

Al Interviews Michael Kuhne | Community College English Instructor

December 16, 2018

In this episode, Al interviews Michael Kuhne, a community college English instructor (recorded 6-13-18). Michael describes his first suicidal thoughts that occurred at age 14, as he contemplated taking his own life while holding a loaded .22 caliber rifle. He goes on to describe two other bouts of major depression and an unhealthy coping mechanism of over-exercising. Michael describes learning later in life what it means to be an adult child of an alcoholic. Now, an instructor at a community college, Michael teaches many students who have had their own traumas and mental health challenges. Michael shares how he is able to empathetically support them.

If you enjoyed this episode, please click the 'like' button. Also, please take a moment to comment and rate the show on iTunes. Finally, don't miss an episode! Click the subscribe/follow button now!

In addition to The Depression Files podcast, you can find Al's blog at TheDepressionFiles.com. You can also find him on Twitter @allevin18.