You truly are not alone!
A few years back we sold some pendants that on the front side had the words “Face It” and on the backside the words “I am not alone.” For anyone who has battled depression you certainly know that sinking feeling of being all alone in a busy world that just doesn’t seem to have time or a place for you. Of course it is generally just a feeling and it isn’t “real” as most of us have many people who care about us and who spend more time with us than we may recognize, but a painful feeling for certain.
This past weekend Face It hosted its first Men’s breakfast in the Face It Center. For those of you who aren’t aware, as of March 1st Face It has moved to a new location and in addition to some new offices, we have the Face It Center. This space (close to 1,000 sq ft) will allow us to host additional groups, larger Face It activities for our guys, as well as provide community and professional education on depression in men.
Last Saturday we had almost 30 men in the Face It Center for our first breakfast. I watched as each man filed into the Face It Center and I could see some apprehension and concern on their faces. These guys had grown accustomed to the hustle and bustle of a Perkins, their ability to only interact with the guys they already knew from their groups, and the relative safety of knowing exactly how the morning would unfold. But rather than letting them go immediately to their comfort zone, I challenged them and the notion of “being alone” that many continue to carry with them. I asked that each guy look around the room and find a person who they didn’t already know and introduce themselves and spend just a few minutes chatting. I had the guys do this with three new men total. From the noise in the room it wasn’t hard to see that they guys very quickly had no problem talking with someone they didn’t previously know.
The point of this exercise is very simple and obvious, but for a group of people who often feel very alone in the world this was far more than just getting to know a new person. It was a chance to add another caring voice to their lives that they can use when they feel alone. It was an opportunity to fight back against that voice that says “no one cares about meet” or “I have no one I can reach out to.” It was a chance, thanks to Face It, to really see that “I am not alone.”