ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

The Invisible Illnesses (a personal account)

Updated on October 1, 2016
Source
Source

Real Men Don't Whine... or so I thought

I am 27 years old, ex-military, and a father of 7. Throughout my life, I have always been very good at one thing, doing what was required of me and doing more than most, in terms of work. I rarely complained when schedules were long, as I felt that it was normal to feel worn out.



Being worn out means you have accomplished something, it means your family can have it easier because you are dealing with the hard stuff, as it should be. One thing I did not see was it was driving me into the ground. Being tired became a common occurrence as I worked between 12-14 hour long days on rotating shifts. But that is what life handed me. That was my choice. Just suck it up and deal with it.


The Beginning

I went through a divorce while stationed in England, where I essentially became a single father for a time, working 12 hours, then coming home and taking care of my two children at that time, for the next 12 hours. I did this through my shift rotations until I had a day off. On average during that span, I would go 60+ hours without sleep and attempt to catch up 4-5 hours at a time during my days off, while still attempting to keep an orderly house and keep up with appointments for my children.

This only lasted for about a month until I was able to hire a live-in nanny that forced me to sleep when I came home from work. However, that month was enough to make a deficit it took me over a year to crawl out of, until I felt normal. But the question became, "What is normal?"

  • Is it normal to feel tired all of the time?
  • Is it normal to not want to do anything?
  • Is it normal to not be hungry?
  • Is it normal to feel like you are living a routine, rather than making it?

I started to feel as if I was merely existing, no longer contributing to myself. My work was satisfactory. My children clothed and fed, and we went to parks and played. That was enough right? As long as everyone else was happy, then why did it matter?


Don't Ignore the signs

Fast forward a little bit to my next duty station. I found an amazing woman that somehow dealt with all the baggage that is me, and we had 3 additional children together, as well as her own 2, bringing our total to 7. I was a 24 yr old father of 7. I owned my own house, I was a success?

As my separation from the military grew closer, things increasingly got worse. My supervisors made me visit mental health, where I was referred for depression and anxiety. I went through numerous medications with numerous reactions, none of which were beneficial. My reactions to medications were either null, or negative. Between max doses of one with no effect, to time-loss on another, I gave up.

I separated from the military and had no outlet. I ended up sitting at home, not acknowledging my children, and once they went to bed, I would drink. A lot. Due to growing up drinking, I have a high tolerance, so a lot means anywhere from 1/2 a bottle to a full bottle of vodka a night.

I was cornered by my girlfriend, and told that I was avoiding the kids, and not acting normal. I didn't see it. So I got a job, not the one I wanted or was qualified for, but a base level minimum wage job which I did not enjoy. I went through the motions and did as I was told. Nothing improved.

Eventually I bounced jobs, and decided to go to school, as being busy helped me take my mind off of everything. After enrolling I started course loading extensively, purposely making impossible schedules, and yet succeeding, but it didn't feel like an accomplishment. I started to fill out my disability claim for the VA and just over the past couple days I have been forced to see how broken I have become.

Providing is not the only requirement for a Father. You must take care of yourself or others will notice. Looking back, There is one thing I would tell others.


  • Real men whine when needed
  • Real men are allowed to feel inadequate
  • Real men need to feel
  • Real men is a process, not a body type.
  • Take care of yourself , for yourself, and others.

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)