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The Depression Files

Health & Wellness Podcasts

Men experience depression differently. Al Levin interviews men who have suffered from depression, educating those who may know little about mental illnesses while giving hope to those who may be suffering.

Men experience depression differently. Al Levin interviews men who have suffered from depression, educating those who may know little about mental illnesses while giving hope to those who may be suffering.


United States


Men experience depression differently. Al Levin interviews men who have suffered from depression, educating those who may know little about mental illnesses while giving hope to those who may be suffering.








Al Interviews Dr. Sam Ko on the Topic of Ketamine

In this episode, Al interviews Dr. Sam Ko, Board Certified Emergency Physician and Medical Director of Reset Ketamine, on the topic of Ketamine (recorded 7-9-20). Dr. Ko talks about his own challenges of working as an emergency room doctor for just over two years and having reached a point of burn out. After spending time traveling the world, studying yoga and meditation, and taking leadership courses, Dr. Ko was able to become rejuvenated and ponder the question, "What is something unique...


Al Interviews Mindy Greiling | Former MN State Representative, Former National NAMI Board Member & Author

In this episode, Al interviews Mindy Greiling, former Minnesota State Representative, Former National NAMI Board Member and author of Fix What You Can: Schizophrenia and a Law Maker's Fight for Her Son (recorded 8-19-20). A former teacher and school board member, Mindy first joined the Minnesota House of Representatives with her eye on education. After six years in the legislature, her son, Jim, was diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder. While continuing her work within the education...


An Announcement - Changes Coming to The Depression Files

Today, September 3, World Suicide Prevention Day, marks three years to the day that the Depression Files podcast has been up and running. Every other week I’ve published a man’s lived experience with depression and/or other mental illnesses. In addition, I’ve published several BONUS episodes in between episodes in which we’ve had a guest and taken a deep dive into a topic such as bipolar disorder or suicide. Today, on the third anniversary of the show, I’d like to announce a few changes...


Al Interviews Josh Knutti | Host of the Overcoming You Podcast

In this episode, Al interviews Josh Knutti, host of the Overcoming You podcast (recorded 7-1-20). Josh worked his way up the corporate ladder and was managing a $580 million, 22K associates company that operated in several countries. But it was never enough for Josh. Wanting more, he left his job and planned to purchase his own company. This major deal fell through at the last possible moment, leaving Josh broke and with nothing. Josh describes the debilitating depression he experienced for...


Al Interviews James Withey | Former Therapist, Mental Health Advocate, Public Speaker & Author

In this episode, Al interviews James Withey, former therapist, mental health advocate, public speaker, and author (recorded 6-18-20). James shares the challenges of losing his father at age five and knowing he was gay at the young age of eleven or twelve, yet keeping those feelings hidden until age eighteen. James very candidly describes his battle with anxiety, panic attacks, anorexia and depression. Multiple suicide attempts and hospitalizations, James still has a safety plan in place...


BONUS Episode - Al Interviews Dr. Peter Gutierrez on the Topic of Suicide

This is a Bonus Episode in which Al interviews an expert or guest on a particular topic related to mental health. In this episode, Al interviews Dr. Peter Gutierrez on the topic of suicide (recorded 6-24-20). Al and Dr. Gutierrez discuss a wide range of topics around suicide; data, impulsivity, Ketamine, therapy groups and much more! Dr. Gutierrez is a clinical research psychologist focused on the topic of suicide prevention. He currently works for LivingWorks as a research...


Al Interviews Matthew Williams | Author, Public Speaker & Project Worker for the Middlesbrough and Stockton Mind Charity

In this interview, Al interviews Matthew Williams, author, public speaker, and project worker for the Middlesbrough and Stockton Mind Charity. Matthew describes three major bouts of depression that he has dealt with in his lifetime. Matthew speaks of taking mental health leaves from work, his fear of starting medications, his recovery, and his passion for doing work that supports others. Matthew is the author of, Something Changed: Stumbling Through Divorce, Dating, and Depression and A...


Al Interviews Evan Whitehead | Director of Special Services, National Consultant & Public Speaker

In this episode, Al interviews Evan Whitehead, director of special services, national consultant, and public speaker (recorded 4-8-20). Growing up with a father who was unpredictable due to substance abuse, Evan experienced trauma as a child. At times, the power and phones at their home would be shut off and the family moved a number of times throughout his childhood. Evan experienced his first bout of depression when he left home for college and started playing DI football. In high school,...


BONUS Episode - Al Interviews Michael Pipich LMFT on the Topic of Bipolar Disorder

This is a Bonus Episode in which Al interviews an expert or guest on a particular topic related to mental health. In this episode, Al interviews Michael Pipich LMFT on the topic of bipolar disorder (recorded 6-16-20). Michael describes the differences between various types of bipolar disorder and the importance of a holistic approach to treating one with this mental illness. Michael shares various treatment options, describes some of the medications, and explains the importance of having...


Al Interviews Jon Harper | Assistant Principal, Author, Podcaster & Public Speaker

In this episode, Al interviews Jon Harper, assistant principal, author, podcaster, and public speaker (recorded 4-1-20). Jon and Al, both assistance principals, discuss the importance of supporting educators with their own mental health. Jon talks about the importance of vulnerability as a leader and the importance of self-care. Jon also shares the story of his own "breakdown" due to a continued rise in the level of anxiety he was dealing with eight years ago. Jon wrote an article titled,...


Al Interviews John Arenburg | Addictions Counselor, Former Long-Term Care Worker, Volunteer Firefighter, Author & Mental Health Advocate

In this episode, Al interviews John Arenburg, addictions counselor, former longer-term care worker, volunteer firefighter, author, and mental health advocate (recorded 3-30-20). John struggled in school from a young age, acting out and smashing things and often finding himself in the principal's office. He began to see a social worker at the age of eleven or so, yet his behaviors peaked in middle school. John became a volunteer firefighter while still in high school and a full-active member...


Al Interviews Brett Stevens | Start-Up Consultant, Former Professional Poker Player & Author

In this episode, Al interviews Brett Stevens, start-up consultant, former professional Poker Player, and author (recorded 3-26-20). Brett had no signs of any type of mental illness until the age of nineteen when he had his first manic episode. Brett takes us through his three manic episodes, all of which began with seven days of paranoia, delusions, and hallucinations. Each of which landed him in a psychiatric hospital inpatient program. Each impacting his life for approximately eighteen...


Al Interviews Jordan Brown | Mental Health Advocate, Trained Social Worker & Author

In this episode, Al interviews Jordan Brown, mental health advocate, trained social worker, and author (recorded 4-6-20). Although Jordan has experienced anxiety since childhood, it wasn't until 2012, after open heart surgery, that he experienced depression. Jordan describes his path to recovery, including a six-day inpatient hospitalization. As a trained social worker with experience in the mental health field, Jordan shares some incredible insights. Combining his love of writing and his...


Al Interviews Jon Middleton | Former Cardiac Nurse & Teacher of Health and Social Care

In this episode, Al interviews Jon Middleton, former cardiac nurse and teacher of health and social care (recorded 3-18-20). Jon shares his story of growing up with anxiety, panic attacks, and depression. Jon's first diagnosis of depression came at age nineteen or twenty after three tragic deaths of people who were close to him in the short span of two weeks, while dealing with the stress of nursing school. Jon describes several episodes of depression he has had to work through, the impact...


Al Interviews Sean Blackwell | Researcher and Teacher of the Spiritual Dimension and Healing Potential of Bipolar Disorder & Author

In this episode, Al interviews Sean Blackwell, researcher and teacher of the spiritual dimension and healing potential of bipolar disorder and author (recorded 3-4-20). Sean shares the path that led him to depression, as well as the many synchronicities that led him to a Landmark Forum conference in which he experienced his first and only psychotic episode. Sean describes this episode, which he refers to as a "Mystical experience", along with his four-day stay at a psychiatric...


Al Interviews Raymond Baxter | Mental Health Activist, Cryptocurrency Enthusiast & Founder of The Relationship Blogger

In this episode, Al interviews Raymond Baxter, mental health activist, cryptocurrency enthusiast, and found of The Relationship Blogger (recorded 2-25-20). Raymond grew up with extreme anxiety and a susceptibility to depression. He recalls his first panic attack at the age of eight years old. At the age of thirteen, he lost a father-figure to a fast-moving stomach cancer. This threw Raymond into a spiral of poor behavior and bad choices. He started drinking and taking drugs. He was kicked...


Al Interviews Chris Agudo | Delivery Driver, Suicide Attempt Survivor, Author & Cofounder of Living Is So Big

In this episode, Al interviews Chris Agudo, delivery driver, suicide attempt survivor, author, and cofounder of Living Is So Big (recorded 2-24-20). Chris can put his finger on four things that occurred in a short period of time that threw him into a dangerous, downward spiral of depression; 1) unrelenting, unexplained massive headaches, 2) a broken relationship, 3) poor grades, and 4) a tragic accident that killed two of his friends. Chris decided to visit his brother and a friend for a...


Al Interviews Tom Cronin | Retreat Host, Meditation Teacher, Coach, Keynote Speaker, Author & Film Producer

In this episode, Al interviews Tom Cronin, retreat host, meditation teacher, coach, keynote speaker, author, and film producer (recorded 2-17-20). Tom shares his story of working on the floor for 26 years in finance markets as one of Sydney’s leading bond and swap brokers. Tom started this job at the young age of nineteen. Receiving a company sports car and taking clients out for expensive meals and drinks, he was living the dream. However, after eight years of this lifestyle, depression had...


Al Interviews Andy Grant | Transformational Energy Coach, Founder of Real Men Feel, Best Selling Author & Suicide Attempt Survivor

In this episode, Al interviews Andy Grant, transformational energy coach, founder of Real Men Feel, best-selling author & suicide attempt survivor (recorded 2-11-20). At age five, Andy began to be molested by a neighbor who was a family friend. He experienced suicidal thoughts from the very young age of eight years old and had his first, of many, attempts at twelve. At age fifteen, in a five-minute appointment based solely on a hereditary factor, Andy was diagnosed with bipolar...


Al Interviews Brock Wilbur | Political Reporter & Standup Comedian

In this episode, Al interviews Brock Wilbur, political reporter and standup comedian (recorded 2-5-20). Brock describes a life with several suicide attempts, one as young as 3rd or 4th grade. He describes losing many friends who would simply disappear from his life with no known reason. Until, that is, one day when a friend called Brock's wife to explain that Brock had broken into her apartment and ranted at her for about an hour about a treasure map that didn't exist. She was especially...