The Depression Files
Al Interviews Kevin & Co | Mental Health Advocate

Al Interviews Kevin & Co | Mental Health Advocate

June 16, 2019

In this episode, Al interviews Kevin & Co, mental health advocate (recorded 5-27-19). Kevin talks about being a trans male, as well as his diagnoses of Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD) and Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID), previously known as Multiple Personality Disorder. Kevin describes his "System", which consists of Kevin and seven "Alters", or "Parts". Kevin describes receiving the diagnoses and the work he has done to have a better understanding of his many alters in this incredibly informative, candid interview.

You can learn more about Kevin & Co on his website. There, you can also purchase beautiful "Grounding Mats", read his BPD Magazine, or check out his "Story Time" collaborative with TheWeInMe. You'll also find Kevin on Twitter @onelilpill.

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 Lorenzo Lewis | Mental Health Advocate & Founder of The Confess Project

Al Interviews Lorenzo Lewis | Mental Health Advocate & Founder of The Confess Project

June 2, 2019

In this episode, Al interviews Lorenzo Lewis, mental health advocate and founder of The Confess Project (recorded 5-13-19). Lorenzo shares some of his childhood trauma including being born behind bars, losing his father and entering a behavioral facility at age 10, and being convicted of a gun crime at age seventeen.

Lorenzo speaks about the challenges of being a black man with a mental illness. He also describes how the African American community, in general, relates to mental illnesses and some of the reasons that many black people have little trust in the medical system in the U.S.

You'll also hear Lorenzo describe the incredible work of The Confess Project, the non-profit he founded in 2016. This mental health initiative supports black boys and men from the ages of 11-35. The Confess Project provides education and training on topics related to mental health. They present in schools, universities and barbershops and even train barbers to become mental health advocates.

You can find out more about The Confess Project on their website or on their FaceBook page. You can also find Lorenzo on Twitter at Theconfessproj.

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 Erik Robinson | General Contractor & Founder of Building a Refuge

Al Interviews Erik Robinson | General Contractor & Founder of Building a Refuge

May 19, 2019

In this episode, Al interviews Erik Robinson, general contractor and founder of Building a Refuge (recorded 4-22-19). After losing nearly eighty personal properties and his own home in the housing crash of 2008-2009, Erik went into a deep depression spending days in the dark of his basement, culminating in an attempted suicide.

In 2011, Erik realized that he was being investigated by the FBI for some of his mortgage investments six years earlier. Erik was charged with a federal crime and served eighteen months of a twenty-one-month sentence in federal prison. Erik describes his time in prison and how he was able to find a group of supportive men and begin to turn his life around.

Erik also describes Building a Refuge, a nonprofit organization that he founded.  The organization brings community and hope around men who are hurting.

You can learn more about Erik and his organization on the Building a Refuge website and on Facebook. You'll also find Erik on Twitter @refuge_a.

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 Vincent Wales | Author & Co-Host of The Psych Central Show

Al Interviews Vincent Wales | Author & Co-Host of The Psych Central Show

May 5, 2019

In this episode, Al interviews Vincent Wales, author and co-host of The Psych Central Show (recorded 4-3-19). Vince is the first guest on the show with Dysthymia, also known as Persistent Depressive Disorder. After Vince's mother left him when he was five-years old, his grandparents adopted him and raised him.

After a couple of encounters with friends who mentioned how depressed he seemed, Vince decided to seek out counseling at the age of twenty. While it took Vince many sessions before he'd open up to his therapist, he was diagnosed with Persistent Depressive Disorder at his very first appointment. It wasn't until twenty years later that Vince decided to try medication.

Vince is the author of four Speculative Fiction novels and is in the process of writing his fifth (the third of a trilogy). You can find all four of his novels here. You can find out more about Vince, including links to other interviews and how to book him for an appearance, on his website at VincentMWales.com. Vince is also a co-host of the very popular Psych Central Show podcast. Vince and his co-host, Gabe Howard, speak candidly with experts on various mental health topics.

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 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.