Stopping brewing and selling up

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Quality over Quantity
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Howdy folks

Well, after almost 10 years of brewing, i have sadly had end to it.

I have suffered from depression all my life and spent the last couple decades doing my best to hide it from everyone, including myself, riding along in a nightmarish grey cloud, too down and blind to it all to seek help.

In recent years it has taken its toll on my family, and on the verge of losing them and a nervous breakdown, i went to the doctor and asked for help. I will never forget sitting in the waiting room...... shaking i was so scared. They diagnosed me with cornic depression, booked me in for counceling and gave me a script for anti-depressents. I also stopped drinking all but the odd beer now and then. I felt great for a change.

After a few months on the happy pils, they arnt working any more. I'm all over the place, cant sleep, cant concentrate, cant work, up, down, happy, sad, friendly, angry...... and i have gone back to knocking back a fair few pints every night and more than a few on weekends.

So i made the decision i needed to make, to get myself back on track and bring some positive change in my life.

I turned off my Kegorator, tipped almost 100L of beer down the drain including an american amber that had just finnished fermenting, and went dry!

That was a week ago and i must say i feel great! I dont wake up every 30 min at night, in fact i sleep right through, My upset guts have settled down. The wife says i have completly stopped snoring and i can concentrate, i can work, my mood is stable.......... seems the alcahol and the pills wernt mixing well :p

I have had withdrawls but its not from the alcahol....... i have about 15 bottles of single malt at my bar and i felt no compulsion to touch them, It was from the enjoyment of pouring a quality home brew and looking at it as i drank it thinking.... i made this and its bloody tops! I missed that satisfaction factor of drinking quality home made beer. I also felt a loss for the hobby that had kept me half sain over the years. I have emersed myself in the brewing process as a place to go when i felt like crap. It gave me something to emerse my thought in and hide behind. But every day now, i feel better, and every day i see that i dont need to drink to escape the horror and emptyness of depression. I started to feel like i was drinking so i could brew, and brewing so i could drink. It hit me like a sledge hammer and i thought bugger it..... i need to change. If i dont im not going to see 40.

Sooooooooooo now that i have shared my deepest darkest secrets with AHB ( well not all of them...... there was this one time at band camp.........) Im selling all my brewing ingredients and some of my brewing gear.

I will put a post up tonight in the buy and sell section listing all my Malt and Hops.

I will state now that it will be pich up only. I work 60+ hours a week and dont have time to go pachaging up stuff to post all around the country. I live in Rutherforn in the Hunter Valley NSW for anyone who doesnt know.

I have about 118 kg of base malt, 27kg of specialty malt and 6.5kg of hops to sell, all but base malts kept vac sealed, and i have priced it well. I will big time prefer a bulk purchase of all of it. As i said i dont have much spare time with a busy job.

As a final note.......... anyone out there who sufferes from depression......... and you know when you do, (and no amount of people growing a mustache or patting you on the shoulder saying "you'll be right mate" will help)........ go and see a doctor. The worst part is having to admit to yourself that your not as perfect as you would like to be. Having to swallow your pride as a human being and admit to a stranger that your a taqd broken.

Once you get past that step, and start to get better....... you look back in horror and what you have lost. I lost my youth to submersing myself in 80 hr weeks at work, 5 bottles of bundy and 3 cartons of tooheys draught a week.

Its different for everyone, you dont have to do what i have done, but if you know you suffer from it....... and if you do......... YOU KNOW...... do something about it!

No better time than now!

We have never met, but I appreciate the advice and inspiration that you've given me and younger / new brewers.

It takes a big man to share your situation as you have done.

I wish you strength and all the best with the challenges that you are facing.

Best regards
tony you have given this forum heaps of advice.but the man say's enough we have to listen.. :icon_cheers:
All the best Tony! Biggest kudos for being able to share this.
Good on you Tony, that must have been one hard post to write. I hope your health improves and you can get on top of things mate.
Good luck to you mate, I hope you can find a path to working less, there's only so much time left for all of us. Good on you for sharing, and good health to you and your loved ones.
Thanks Daniel.

I will always have a passion for beer and brewing and wont be leaving the forum.

I have set myself the rule of 2 or 3 beers on a Saturday night as a treat and that's it. You only live once and a bloke cant deprive himself af all pleasure :)

I will still be around to help out what what i know and see to it that up and coming brewers make better beer!

I wont be selling my brewery, and have set myself a time line of 12 months on the course im on now. See how im going in 12 months and i may start brewing again on a much smaller scale.

For now.......... i need to do some healing and make change in my self and my life.

Im thinking of making a lambic and letting it rot till next year :p
and thanks everyone else :)

as i said......... you wont get me off here in a hurry......... I love AHB........ its a great place to hang out now and then :)
Good on you mate. I know where you're at. There are a lot of us out there and you are in no way in the minority you may think you are.

Look after yourself and remember no matter how bad today is tomorrow is a new day and it can be great!

Best wishes Tony. I hope all works out for you and your family.

Thanks for the generous advice that you provided to me and many others on this forum.

I don't post much on the forum but I must say it is sobering to read a story like yours and thought I should add to the tide of well wishes.

I had one of your beers in a swap a few years back and it was one of my most memorable swap beers so don't lose that touch! I hope things come good for you Tony.

We have shared many a hearty chat on Facebook, exchanged recipe ideas and ideas in general, taken the piss out of each other, and generally had a great time.

It takes a real man to admit when he needs help, and if not help, a change to make things right. And then guts to actually follow through.

I appreciate all you've done for me and my brewing, and will very much miss the awesome, and downright sexy pics you have shared with us of your beers.... (And not of your avatar :D )

Keep up the good work, and I'm sure you'll be around here to lend an ear, and an opinion on the things you do know, and some things you don't ;)

Keep in touch mate!


Ps: look forward to the odd pic of your beers, or some average ones of Tooheys Draught :)
All the best Tony. Have done the ugly dance with depression and anxiety myself and understand the balance between too much work/too much booze/everything else that goes along with that package.

That last bit on Tony's OP is very, very good advice. I know I was surprised after admitted I had these issues how many other people I knew had gone through the same thing. Its a true ******* of a thing, but we all want to say I'm right when we're not. Kudos Tony.
All the best Tony.
I know exactly how you feel as I have suffered from the black dog myself for 8yrs & have been off medication for the last 2yrs.
I got diagnosed with clinical depression due to financial commitments & being a father for the first time. I basically fell apart after years of hiding my stress. It was indeed a daily battle & at my lowest point, I felt that I could not continue like this & desperately needed some form of intervention to help me cope. The drugs you take to boost serotonin are sometimes far worse than the condition itself & I tried three different medications before seeking help from a Naturopath to help me on the road to recovery. Looking back, I lost those 8yrs to being in the black cloud & it's the most horrific period of my life & I understand what people with depression deal with on a daily basis, it's horrible.
All I can say mate is I wish you all the best & please, please, never, ever give up on yourself or the loved ones around you as eventually the cloud will disappear.
I struggled with the Zoloft & the other medications that the Psychiatrist prescribed & found the Naturopath was the right solution for me. She prescribed a serotonin re-uptake inhibitor called Hydroxy Tryptophan, HTP-5. It took a few months before it seemed to be doing anything but after 3yrs on this, I am now not so negative nor stressed & living in that Zombie drunk feeling state. Please look into this if you have a bad time on the prescribed medication. No two people react the same with medications too, what might work for someone, may not work for someone else. It's really a matter of finding what gives you the balance.
Please PM me mate if I can help in any way at all.
All the best Tony.
Good luck Tony and many thanks for your help.
Professional hat on - if you need something; advice/options just pm me.
Lambic is a good long term option.
been down your road ,all the best Tony watch them pills they **** with ya head ,,,, drought

Having been depressed all my life as the result of lifetime health problems that are fortunately not severe enough to be clinically diagnosed as depression I open my heart out to you mate & hope that all goes well for you in the future.
After reading your original post I reckon you have done the hardest bit so it should be all downhill from here. :super:
PM'ing you Tony.
Cheers folks.......... Im off to bed now.

Thanks for all your support and know this........... i will survive! and i WILL brew again.

but for now..... i will just help out where i can :)

and im serious about the lambic....... im aging some EKG Plugs broken up.
As you have obviously made a good choice to slow down on the alcohol there are other things that may help you.

Funnily enough for me, giving up coffee (caffeine) has had the most positive effect so far. I feel good 95% of the time after this one change. Stopping alcohol didn't really help but stopping caffeine has. I think this is because of lessened anxiety.


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