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Moving to Another State--Fresh Start or Running Away?
#1
I've tried to write several different drafts of this, but each time I do, I end up writing half of a novel that no one wants to read. So...I'll try to keep things short.
I'm thinking of moving to another state. Ideally, I would move in three months, when the lease for my apartment is up. (You can break the lease, but then you don't get your deposit back.) There are several reasons that have influenced this moving idea:

1.) Just got out of a relationship. Been in a recent string of things not working out, people lying about who they actually are, using me, etc. (I realize I might not be able to make the best decisions right now due to the emotional complications of a break-up.)

2.) I'm looking to distance myself from my family, who all live nearby. I love them, but every time I see them (which tends to be every few weeks, since I can't play the "I'm too far away" card), I feel absolutely drained and defeated. No matter what we are doing, they always find ways to let me know that my artistic career is not going to happen and that my whole lifestyle of pursuing art while working just enough to pay bills is pathetic. There's also the whole gay issue, but they tend to just pretend I'm actually straight and that I never came out to them years ago.

3.) General depression and anxiety are really putting me in a vulnerable position. I am generally able to complete things like going to work and paying bills, but once I come home, it's not infrequent for me to feel unable to move for the rest of the night.

4.) The general area I'm in feels claustrophobic and really preppy in a bad way. Though I try my best to just ignore it and focus on other things, the atmosphere really drags me down here.

5.) Fresh start. Essentially, this is the major reason for moving. I am well aware that moving to a new place will not magically solve anything. It has to be up to me to change. I'm not trying to run away from myself. I just feel that moving to a new location will not only help enhance that "fresh start" feeling, but it will also give me a much-needed kick in the ass to be more sociable and push and challenge myself in new ways.

Ok, so I guess I wrote a novel. I'm basically trying to get some advice from anyone who has moved for the purpose of a fresh start. Did moving really help kick start a new life? Or did you just end up in the same traps as before?
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#2
I have never really moved away but I can relate to all of the things you stated and have dealt with the same or similar situations in my life......

I am really tough on myself and it has been a great tool for me. It is my most valuable tool.....

For instance...the relationship stuff...I would resolve it by figuring out what my role in it was and thus avoid thinking like a victim and attracting it to me again. There is a lesson in everything.....I think it is important to find what it is and own it.... or you will probably repeat it....

If your family or anyone else drains you...avoid them. Keep them at a distance. Examine dogma and decide how much of it you want to include in your life....

I do think a fresh start starts inside of you....
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#3
I took one look at the question on the forum board and said to myself, "this looks like a sackhead question."
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#4
Moving isn't a big deal. You don't like it where you are, so move. Go for it!
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#5
I moved away from my family over a decade ago. It was nothing related to my sexuality, and I have never felt it necessary to let them know about the same. The issue was related to family matters and I was completely fed up. So much so that I decided to leave it all behind. Today, I am on my own, well settled and at peace.
In India, it is almost mandatory to compromise at every stage of your life for your family's sake. I would rather meet them at half way..
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#6
Hi.

You need to get your depression treated before you strike out. Changing venues, opening new doors, and finding your way in the world are all good, but there is a time to do it.

With your current depression, if you move away from family and friends and support networks, you could easily end up isolating yourself, finding it hard to turn back and admit defeat, and it could put you at risk of suicide.

Plan your move. Have a job lined up. If you can choose a place where you already have friends or relatives, pick that place.

See a counselor now. Get your depression under control. Then, if you still want to try your wings, I highly recommend it.

I left my home town of 45 years and it worked well for me. That was eight years ago, and I've never looked back. I'm not a typical person, but you may not be either.

Best of luck with it.
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#7
At the age of 45 I totally redid my life: moved 1500 miles, changed jobs, left a 16 year relationship etc. Never looked back. But as East says, a fresh start starts inside you.
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#8
I think Hardheaded1 makes a good point but I'm not sure I agree 100%. Yes, if you're depressed now, moving in and of itself isn't going to 'fix' whatever the deeper issues are. Yes, you will find yourself alone in new territory. But will that be a debilitating or liberating?

From my own personal experience, sometimes it is necessary to relocate to even begin to deal with one's deeper issues. It depends how immeshed one is with the family dynamic and how much apart of the real problem it is (usually quite a lot).

For myself, the healing and perspective I needed could not have occurred living anywhere near my family of birth. I had already moved from the rural midwest to Milwaukee but even that wasn't 'far' enough. I ended up moving to California and to a different 'culture' (SF Bay Area ala 1970s), one that valued self exploration and self expression.

So, no, taking care of yourself, doing what you need to do to not only survive but prosper -- that isn't running away. Sometimes we can not do what needs to be done in the context of the family dynamic. Even after moving to California, it took me another few years to get a clear perspective on what had really been going on all those years. Going back to visit after that I *saw* clearly what I could not have seen before: My depression was a symptom of growing up in THAT family dynamic, and not inherently a part of my personality.
.
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#9
Wherever you go you will still be with you...

I did the running thing in my 20's... Ran hither and yon - some of it was to escape the cult my mother was part of, some of it was to escape #2 and #3 (partners) but a large part of it was an attempt to run as far away from myself as I could get....

Yes you get that fresh start feeling, however you can't really do a fresh start until you end the old life. If you don't things will get worse. For me running away lead to alcohol, then drugs, then suicide (30 December 1994 - a day I will never forget - (un)fortunately they resuscitated) .

One thing about your own death is that it ends a lot of the old stuff. It is also an 'eye-opening' experience - IF you survive it. Most people, however, don't survive. There are easier, saner, safer ways to end the old shit without resorting to murder (murder of others or murder of self).

I hate to say this, but it sounds to me you are heading down a similar road. you have depression - that is not a thing you can run from (trust me I tried - lots of pills, plastic bag over my head - EMT intervened, ER resuscitated). I know that feeling of claustrophobia... It hangs on you -

Pro-tip: Alcohol and meth buy you precious minutes from out of that tight spot - downside - well we are talking drugs and alcohol - hello.

Yes you have a lot on your plate, I empathize with you. However none of what you have said is likely to stalk you and kill you in your sleep, or drag you down a dark alley to kill you. (Cults and bad abusive exes do that sort of thing).

You need to see this relationship ending to its conclusion. Mind the break-up is just the start, then there is the process of grieving for it, the process of allowing the anger seeth and boil that old love down to a pea-sized emotion that you can set aside and not allow it to disturb your next relationship.

Folks - well this is a test... Your being tested of your resolve, and the experience you get will give you important life lessons. Trust me, if you run away and not stand your ground and say 'no' - that standing your ground and saying no thing gets far, far harder to do until you become the yes-man that allows everyone to walk all over you.

Depression, Anxiety, Claustrophobic feelings. These emotions will only get a temporary (at best) reprieve once you move to a new place. But once that new place gets a little un-new those feelings rise back up and you will find yourself needing a new fresh start.

You do have a fine set of really good reasons to get some therapy and learn how to deal with this stuff. Anxiety and depression are two sides of the same coin, and your exhausts at the end of the day sounds more like symptoms of depression than anything else.

A therapist can help you to discover which tools you can use to deal with the side effects of depression, coping skills, and ways to reduce the overall impact of that depression. Therapist is also a good person to help you figure out if you need one of those new fangled pills that help. Studies reveal that antidepressants work far better if the patient is also working with a therapist.

Unless your life is under threat - as in someone is stalking and getting ready to kill you, I would strongly advise you to NOT attempt to run away. Face these challenges, learn from the experience.

It is better that way, a whole hella lot better than running and running and running and running......
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#10
Thank you everyone for your advice! I actually do see a therapist and will see them later on this week to discuss this idea and all of the ideas that I've gotten here. We'll see what happens.
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