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Attention seeking
Hi everyone,

I hope that I'm posting this in the correct place.

I have a slightly embarrassing problem that has come about over the last few weeks. It sounds really silly when I think about it when it's not happening, but when I am thinking about it, I don't think of it as silly for some reason!

I keep having this kind of craving to attention seek - Like if I'm walking down the road and see an ambulance coming by me, I think to fall on the ground so that they'd stop and well, I'd get some kind of attention from it.

I'm a healthy 25 year old with no previous mental health issues etc and think of myself as a pretty normal person!

I don't know why I keep have this go around in my head.

Thanks.
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TY
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Funniest update ever (excuse my sarcasm).

I have been treating my 12 days of illness as a virus.

It is not a virus.

3 days ago, I woke up with terrible anxiety and feeling bad mentally and physically... This build up was because of something that was happening on this day and only then did I realize that all of my physical problems are from my mind. It was all a mental problem to start with.

I found a new and excellent psychologist the same day and went to him. He could see through all of the symptoms and then I could do. I can't believe that I didn't see it myself.

I have been treating anxiety and depression as a virus for 12 days by locking myself in my apartment in order to 'get rid of the virus' and in doing so, made the real problem 10 times worse than it started out.

The new psychologist has helped greatly. He said don't take meds and just say to myself from this time on that I am going to break the cycle of having a bad stomach in the morning and not having an appetite etc etc. I did that and the next day was the first time in 12 days that I didn't have a bad stomach. Also today, the second day since seeing him, I didn't have a bad stomach again.

On the other side though. The day after I saw him, I felt much better in some ways and worse in others. Regardless, today I feel pretty darn good. The only problem is that I couldn't sleep until 6am this morning, even though I was laying there feeling relaxed and I wasn't aware of any stresses or thoughts on my mind whatsoever. I obviously still have some deep thoughts going on that I can't even grab on to or see what they are or that they are even going on!

Asides from that, I ate a meal today for the first time in 12 days and I have my appetite back.

So good and bad things are happening. At least it is a relief to get my final and correct diagnosis.

I don't want to fool myself and think that now I feel 'back to normal' today, that I will feel the same way tomorrow.. but at least that is where I want to be.
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Just remember that thoughts and feelings are like clouds or waves or even leaves on a tree.  They come and go.  How you think and feel can change from moment to moment.

It is good that you have a good T with whom you can relate too.

Physical and mental illness can be confusing as there is often some overlap.
Be patient and receptive and you will come to understand and move forward.

Good luck with everything.
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Thx.

Yes, I am really trying to stay strong and relaxed. The problem is that I can't even recognize it myself until I feel really bad physically, so I need to learn how to stop it before that.

I am back at work this morning which is obviously a big improvement since having more than a week off. But I am still left with some weird symptoms which I don't know why I have really. I still feel very faint and my eyes are blurry. Also, I just got to work and I DID feel myself start to feel a bit panicky as people were asking if I am feeling better (after my "virus") and to be honest, 5 minutes later I had my bad stomach again! But of course, that bad stomach seems to do wonders and I feel quite a bit better afterwards...

Just now need to sort out the blurry eyes and dizziness.

I don't want to blame these symptoms again on a physical illness (!) but my ears are blocked up a bit and my glands are up in my throat today. Again, dare I say that those symptoms can cause loss of balance/dizziness and blurry eyes.... haha. Now I don't know what is what I really don't. I'm just going to try and forget about it and get on with it.
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Not necessarily to stop it but to feel it.  People need to be able to feel their emotions.

Those symptoms could be due to low blood sugar, dehydration, etc or anxiety.
Try some deep breathing.  That can sometimes help.

It sounds like somatization but then it could also be due to a 'real' issue.
Keep up with the therapy to help you better understand, etc and see your doctor if you have concerns.
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Yes, agreed. I need to feel it in order to be able to not have the physical things and regardless of the physical feelings, but even more so - There are obviously things that are bothering me that much that have caused a big build up of anxiety within me. And I didn't even see it coming.

That's all I want to do, is at least, to bring those deep thoughts to the front of my mind, and if it means that I can then just get them out and talk about them, then I'd rather do that than what is happening to me now.

I agree about the symptoms... and am trying to work out a correlation between the 'non-mental' possible issues and the possible medical ones such as simply not eating much in the morning, hence, having low energy/sugar levels and feeling faint. Even though I can see that sometimes I have eaten and unlike me, for some reason, something will bother me a little and then I feel light headed and faint - But they are things that wouldn't normally make me feel like this, unless now, I am maybe just very sensitive to things around me so maybe that's why. Anyway, enough of diagnosing myself. I wish I could do it, but I don't know myself... apparently!

It would be easy enough that if tomorrow, I wake up feeling OK, I won't go back to the psychologist, but that is something that would be the dumbest idea of them all of course. The psychologist blamed all of the feelings I have on what I have going on mentally, I just hope we can dig deep enough and/or that he will be able to help me somehow get to those thoughts before something happens again like not sleeping the whole night and laying there feeling so relaxed and like there is nothing on my mind.. but of course there is big time!!
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You know yourself, you just aren't listening.

Your symptoms seem a little atypical from what I am use to.  If you were relaxed then what was preventing you from sleeping?  Maybe it was the pressure from lying awake thinking you're relaxed?  I hate lying awake not being able to sleep.

I went through a phase where I thought and felt I was relaxed (more so than usual anyway) and ... well I'm not sure what was going on now.  My anxiety levels were extremely high, apparently.  Maybe the relaxed state is a state of denial.  ??

Just listen to your body and mind and give yourself permission to just feel.  If something comes up you don't have to change it, just acknowledge it and try and identify it.
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Totally agree.

Really, what has been making me anxious is really not knowing if it's a mental or physical problem... Or both... I've come to the conclusion that it is both - Still isn't solved 100% but I'm on my way.

I woke up this morning with a really stuffy head and blocked up nose and ears and I think that is what was causing that faint and off balance feeling in my head. I took anti-decongestants and now that feeling has gone off and I feel good.

Feeling much better today so hope it will continue. Mentally, I've been thinking that I'm OK, and well, I'm not 100% but I'm pretty sure that it is still mild anxiety and depression like the psychologist said.

But the example about not sleeping and feeling relaxed at the time and like nothing is on my mind, is obviously still something I need to sort out - I just want to be able to channel my thoughts and recognize what is bothering me, even if it's something small that anyone would worry about.

I hope that the psychologist will be able to help me with this. In some ways, I am thinking that I won't go back to him as I feel OK now, but I guess that is a bad idea?
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Many people with anxiety, and anemia, stress about health issues.

You are OK.  Everybody is OK.  I actually think you may be more anxious than you let on or are maybe feeling frustrated with some aspect of your life.

Very bad idea.  What happened with the last T?  I expect given her training and education she may have been more expensive.
It's almost like you're doing something a person with bpd would, not saying you have bpd because I don't think you do, but that is leaving relationships prematurely.  I wonder if subconsciously you were leaving some of your stuff with her or probably more likely ran because you felt exposed and vulnerable.  I don't know.  That theory doesn't quite sound right.  Just wondering though because the leaving is becoming a theme.  Do you feel it says something about you or your status or do you just leave before people hurt or leave you.  ??  I should stop trying to psychoanalyze you.

About identifying the thoughts what I found useful were the dbt skills (used for treating bpd) observing and describing.  You don't even have to start with thoughts or feelings.
Observe stuff and be mindful of that.  Later you can describe what you see, hear, feel, smell, taste, etc, etc.  I really should revisit these skills.  They are really useful life skills.  If you're interested they should be on the net somewhere.  Just search for dbt skills.  I would recommend looking at the ?mindfulness ones.  The observing, describing and mindfulness ones.

If you're not interested don't bother.  It was just an idea.  It was something that helped me go from being unaware to being a little bit insightful.
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"I actually think you may be more anxious than you let on"

Yes, it's not that I am trying to hide something or am not being honest in telling the true way I am feeling - The problem is that I honestly don't realize what is causing me this much anxiety. Like I said in my previous posts, when I have the physical problems, I don't at the time have anything in the front of my mind going on that I can say is causing the anxiety. It's just so far back that I don't know what it is. I really don't.

The first T had less experience, and was cheaper and not convenient to get to from where I live.

The second one seems great, is close to me, a lot of experience and expensive, but hey, he seems really good so I will see him for now. I have only seen him once but am seeing him tomorrow for the 2nd time. The only thing which ***** is that he is going abroad in one months time for 6 months.. so he's not going to be here in a months time. I hope that I'll at least get enough out of the sessions with him that I can at worst, just have to move to another T and kinda start over. Not 100% practical, but I hope that I'll be able to solve a lot of these things in the meantime and hope for the best.

The first T recommended to take the meds and the second one recommended not. The second T helped me on the phone a couple of times with things and his approach seemed to have really helped, so I hope that it can continue. For example, I called him panicking that I hadn't eaten all day and now I really needed to but the smell of food was making me nauseous. I called and asked if I should take the meds and if that would increase my appetite and solve this problem. He recommended to not take the meds and try and control this by myself and have the confidence in doing that without needing meds. He said to sit in front of the plate of food and close my eyes and breathe deeply. Sit there as long as I need to until I am desensitized to the food and that it doesn't make me feel nauseous anymore. I did that and it worked.

(About the relationship thing, I think you got confused about the T's and that it was actually the other way around. We should be all good on that now, in agreement? ;-) )

So you're saying that you shouldn't necessarily start off with what your thoughts of anxiety are literally, but just more about what you are feeling senses and symptoms wise?

I don't know how it's going to go with the T tomorrow, but I hope well. I don't know how he is going to do the session and to be honest, I don't know how or what would help me either... so I hope his approach will be good and worth it!
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I don't think you're being deceitful or dishonest.  Just reading some of what you write you come across as being quite ...  It doesn't even feel like anxiety, not how I experience it anyway.  It kind of feels more obsessional.  Like you get stuck on something and find it hard to let go or move on.  That is anxiety.  I guess it is different for everyone.

I guess if it were me (theoretically speaking because I would likely do what you are) I would find a new T now before you develop a therapeutic alliance and have to invest in covering the same ground with someone else.  It doesn't seem like a very practical thing to be doing.

Perhaps it's more about needing reassurance.  Just wondering if you feel you need permission to eat (to take good stuff in).  ??

I understand now -I think.  She was less experienced and more inconvenient and wanted you to take meds, etc.  No, I think I'm still probably confused.  I thought the last one was a doctor with psychology degrees and experience in social work.
I expect I did get confused somewhere.  Sorry for not getting it.

I don't have any psychological training, etc.  What I have found useful is just basic observing and describing.  Observing is just observing without trying to describe it. I just meant starting with very basic things.  I am walking.  I can hear the sound of my shoes on the street.  I can hear birds singing in the trees.  I can feel the warmth of the sun on my face.  I can feel the slight breeze.  I am thinking x, y, z.  I am feeling a, b, c.
Just real basic stuff.  The other deeper stuff can take time but with practice you can learn to become more in tune with everything.  With your thoughts, feelings.

If you know what is causing your anxiety you could work backwards from that.  Issues go from superficial to deep.  An anxiety about being alone in the present could relate back to being lost in a mall when you were younger.  I'm not a T I can't really tell others how this stuff works.

I just read this very brief thing this morning.  It said people can be either factual people or emotional people.  People can either use facts or use feelings or use both.  I was probably a more factual sort of person.  I liked all the facts.  I liked to know all the ins and outs of something.  Now, I expect I am more an emotional person.
Maybe if you are not that in tune with your feelings you are a factual sort of person.  ??

I think you should do whatever works for you.  Let your T guide you and don't let anything I say confuse you.  (BPD makes me a very confused individual.)

Trust him and talk to him.  That's got to be a good place to start.

Just wondering if the gender of your T means anything.  Gee, I'm hopeless.  Good luck with your session.
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I have some anxious thoughts at some times in the day and can recognize them which is good. A lot of them I can't and they feel way back in my mind. The thing is that such a tiny thought triggers me and then it can last for a while. For example, I think in my mind 'I feel lonely now' - it finishes there but the anxiety has been brought on just from thinking those 4 words in my mind. They come and go so fast that I hardly remember or recognize them. It's not like I'm having long and extensive thoughts so then I can focus and see them well.

The first T was female with a Phd in Psychology. She recommended taking the meds.
The second is a male with a Phd in Psychology also, and is the professor of Psychology at the university here and has a lot more years experience than the first. He recommended not to take the meds which in a way I am thankful for and in other way, in a way, I want to take them, as when I feel bad for even those first few-several hours of the day, all I want to do is stop that.
I don't think the gender of the T matters really. In fact, I'd probably like to see a female more than a male, but as the new T is more experienced and seems to help more, I decided to see him.

Now I am a bit concerned that really, I can only see him another 5 times (5 weeks, once a week) before he leaves the country for 6 months. I've gone back and forth about it and what to do, but I think overall, I will stick with him and hope that in the next 5 weeks, I will be feeling better and can sort out most things that are going on.

Thank you for the advice about starting off with basic feelings... I really think that what you wrote will help me to not start off with the big stuff, but to start off basically and hopefully build it up to get to the real big problems and things that are causing me to be anxious.

I just got back from seeing him for the 2nd time. I think I am looking for too many answers and am not really getting any. I probably shouldn't really expect for the T to give me quick answers. The only person that can resolve these problems are myself, along with his advice. All I got out of the session was that as he was talking about what was troubling me, I was feeling faint and close to it, so yes, those things are really bothering me and are causing the anxiety. Asides from that, he's recommended to write a daily journal of my thoughts throughout the day and also write a list of where I would like to be in 1 years time. I hope that these two things will help and that I will be able to do them.

I feel disconnected from my emotions. And in general, just disconnected from my body. Even in the session with him, we're talking about why I am unhappy and what is making me anxious, I feel that I should have more emotions than I actually am letting out. I still have a big block there that I am trying to push through. About the factual and emotional... I feel def not emotional and the only factual thing is the physical feelings that I can properly explain and talk about.
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With time you'll be better able to identify them.  Your reaction won't necessarily be as automatic.  If something comes up you could review themes you have discussed in therapy, these can help provide some clue as to what may be happening.
I was told to look at when I had had those feelings before.  Who did they involve?  What were they about?

A Professor sounds very self-important.  The doctor on the mental health expert forum also has some decent qualifications and experience and he seems like he knows what he is talking about (and seems like a genuine person).  He is assistant clinical professor or something like that.  I almost felt you could have been describing him for a moment.  I think his preference is to avoid meds if at all possible.

I think you could be looking to avoid the pain and I don't think that is always a good idea.  Medication may or may not be a good idea.  If you can manage without it then I think that that is the best option.  Visit some of the mental health related forums and read some members comments about withdrawal and addiction, etc.  It is definitely best to not go there if possible.

Go for the next five weeks.  Also ask him if he could recommend someone else in his absence.  Several discussions with the doctor on the mental health and emotional eating expert forums have been way more beneficial than months, even years, of therapy.  If it's helping go.  Deal with his leave later.  At least he's given you adequate notice.
Don't stress about him going just make the most of now.

A lot of us plough through our days not very mindful of even basic stuff.  It's probably not all that surprising that many of us aren't even in tune with our own thoughts, feelings and bodies.

Sounds interesting.  Just do the best you can.  It's not a test.

You shouldn't feel as though you need more of anything.  That puts way too much pressure on you.  It kind of sounds as though you may be dissociating a little.  ??  I think that you're not feeling stuff for a reason.  That is also a way of protecting yourself.  I think the big question is probably, from what.  What are you afraid of?

The physical symptoms may be giving you something tangible with which to express your emotional pain.  They can also be warning signs that there is stuff going on that needs to be addressed.

Psychology is interesting but sounds a bit repetitive after a while.  I guess there are so many different techniques and strategies and individual differences that it is never boring.  I hope this new T can help.
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Unfortunately have felt worse in the last couple of days. Now it's all coming out as to what is my real problem, mental and not physical and also in going to the psychologist and having an hour talking with him, leaving and still having a LOT on my mind, now basically I have been feeling worse for it.

Haven't been able to really function in the mornings for the first few hours, and no appetite to eat until the afternoon. Generally feeling bad in the morning, not sure what to do with myself. Tried to go to work and sit there feeling disconnected from my body, blurry eyed and faint. Then try to be at home, and nothing to keep me distracted asides from focusing on the physical feelings and now the mental ones creeping in. I only feel 'normal' once it's 4pm in the afternoon on most days.

Tonight I have taken the clonazepam and will take 0.25mg once or twice a day. I was told twice, so will see how that goes.

I know that it's meant to be highly addictive after using it just for more than 3-4 weeks even, so I hope that I can take a low dose which will help me for the first couple of weeks or 3 weeks, max a month, but I don't want to go over that for obvious reasons.

I know the life changes I need to make in order so that I won't be as anxious and unhappy. I can do it and am and have been motivated, but not giving it 100%. There is nothing I can do which is an 'instant fix' so hence why I just need the meds to at least bring me down a bit from the anxiety and eat again and function and make the positive changes and meet with the T once a week.

Not where I wanted to be, but it got too bad.
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In therapy you can often feel worse before you feel better.  

Is 4 pm significant for some reason?  What does that mean to you?

Just take it as needed but not more than the specified dose.

It's OK if you take meds.  It's not the end of the world.  Just do what you need to in order for you to be able to move forward.

I don't know how addictive that med is but monitor your use and if you have concerns then discuss them with your T or doctor.

Rome wasn't built in a day.  Just be patient and take things one step at a time.  Let how you feel determine the pace at which you choose to make the changes.  If you feel great try for more, if not, just accept where you are and do the best you can.

As long as we know what we want and where we need to go we will get there eventually.
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In therapy you can often feel worse before you feel better.  
---- SO TRUE - After the first session, I felt pretty good. After the second one, and during the second one, I sat there and felt so close to fainting it was crazy. I was at a point of if all coming out that I couldn't control it. The T's technique was basically to just carry on talking whilst I had my hand on my head, eyes closed and about to pass out lol. I guess there was no point in him stopping talking, then I'd feel better and he'd start talking again and I'd feel the same again. I got through it in the end without passing out, but I felt awful for it.

Needless to say, that whole day I felt bad, and the next day I started taking the Clonazepam.

Things get worse before they get better ;-)

About feeling bad in the morning and better in the afternoon - I couldn't understand this but the psychologist made sense as to what he said. - When I wake up in the morning, I've slept and woken up first of all in the apartment by myself (which is part of my problem in being lonely and a tough situation) and also my mind has woken up (from a a deep relaxing sleep with my body functions slowed down also once I awake) mind pretty blank and not thinking of much. I noticed that when I sat down in the morning after getting up and didn't do anything, I start to feel anxious and bad. BUT if I get up, get ready and leave my apartment straight away, then  I feel a lot better. Then once I go to work for example, as long as I am busy and the anxiety and worries aren't on my mind, I'm OK. Once it's the afternoon already, I guess I've had enough happen to me since I got up and am around people, so the anxiety is off of my mind. Then once it's the afternoon, I get an appetite and can eat. Again, for the same reasons. At night I'm usually OK also, for the same reasons, have had a tiring and full day of stuff and unless I sit and start to think of things, or nothing, then my mind starts off again.

Now I'm at work and feeling 90% - Still a slight kinda buzz in my body from slight anxiety and a bit lighthaded but not faint. I don't expect it to go 100% straight away, but the meds have really helped me so far a lot.

Ty for the advice, I totally agree with what you wrote.

Just trying to keep positive and trying (but failing so far) to ascertain what the mental thoughts are when I start to feel the physical things. For now, the physical things come along and I can't see where they started from. The T said to write a journal of my thoughts during the day, so am trying my best to do this.
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It seems like good advice to keep a journal of thoughts (and feelings).  Writing things down may help you observe what is going on.  I guess it's a bit like keeping a food diary.
I hope the journalling helps.
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Thx - I have been put on some other meds today as the Clonazepam was making me way too drowsy and tired. Couldn't wake up in the morning.

Now I'm on Alprazolam which the psych says will make me less drowsy, increase my appetite and also help with the mild depression.

Hope it'll be better for me.

I also unfortunately have to start with a new psychologist as I decided not to go back to the second good one as he is leaving the country in 3 1/2 weeks... No point in seeing him and having to start all over again so will start afresh with a new and permanent one also through my healthcare which will be a LOT cheaper also.
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That was one of the meds that the doctor on the mental health expert forum said was effective for anxiety.  Just watch for long-term use though because a lot of people have written and complained about addiction and withdrawal.

That sounds like a good plan.  And with you making the break and not your T it will be easier emotionally.
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Thanks... Yes, I heard that the med I am on now is usually only used for 2-4 weeks and not longer due to withdrawal/addiction.

I am quite sure that I will be able to control the anxiety within a month of taking the meds whilst seeing the psychologist so am hoping to be off within the month anyway.

;-)
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Ridiculously, I've been gradually feeling worse since taking the medication!

Thought that the dose was low, as I was still having physical anxiety after just a couple of hours of taking it. Then yesterday, it didn't seem to do anything for me, so I had taken the regular 0.25mg in the morning and wasn't meant to take any more, but felt too bad. Took another 0.25mg at 9pm and another 0.25mg at 2am, and did nothing for me at all. Wake up this morning with my regular bad stomach at 5am, and had my head over the toilet dry heaving for 20 minutes (nothing in my stomach at all to come up). Don't know if that was due to the anxiety (I was more anxious because of a phone call I'd gotten last night) or maybe the "vomiting" was due to taking more meds last night. But 0.75mg in a day doesn't sound like much to me! It didn't even help me sleep and still slept as bad as I normally do with only taking the meds once at 6am.

4 days now of gradually getting worse. My appetite is going to virtually nothing and my sleeping is getting worse also. Total mess.

Going back to the psychiatrist today or tomorrow at the latest and will explain everything and we'll see what he can do for me. He's given me a Benzo which is meant to be the most fast acting, but a week of it, and I just feel worse. Then take a higher dose last night and doesn't do anything either! Not sure what the solution is here due to the other other meds I can take do not instantly help and can take 2-4 weeks before they do.

This *****.
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This *****.

Didn't realize that it's classed as a swear word lol... I wrote $-u-c-k-s... you know, as in, this is not nice!!!
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I understand.

My mum was prescribed that med for anxiety prior to flying.  She was told to take a dose as a trial.  I think it was .25 mg and she said it did nothing for her.  Usually she is really sensitive to meds too.

It could be that the dose is too low, especially for your high levels of anxiety.

Keep working through this with your doctor and therapist.
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TY. And how are you doing?

I went to the psychiatrist yesterday and explained everything. He said that I should up my dosage to 2-3 pills a day (1-1.5mg).

Also, he said before to take them in the morning, so not only was I not sleeping enough as I wasn't taking before I was going to bed, I also had to take them in the morning on an empty stomach and without being able to eat.

Last night, I took one pill at 12.30am as I got in to bed, after 10 minutes I was asleep, still woke up at 5am and was awake for 5 minutes but went back to sleep and slept a great 9 hours... Haven't done that in over 5 weeks now, and boy, did I need it. AND, no bad stomach this morning... First time in 5 weeks also! I'm going to take 1 pill at night like this and one at lunchtime for now, so 2 a day. And better to take at lunchtime also so that I am not so groggy in the morning once taking it and can eat normally a bit at least at lunchtime so can have the meds with it.

Still aware that this may not happen every day and I still have things to work on etc, but it's a good start.
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Hi.  Me?  Tired and stressed.  Have had my brother and his girlfriend here and have been busy.  Looking forward to just chilling out for a bit.

It's good that the medication changes are helping.  It always feels great to get some sleep after being deprived for so long.  Being less vulnerable also helps with the therapy.
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Well, I'll join ya a bit in the feelings... I've been sleeping a lot better, as in more hours, but I guess as much as the medication is helping with the physical symptoms of anxiety, it's all still inside of me and still feeling exhausted! All good... Just gotta keep moving forwards.

And I'm stressed also (!)... I emigrated a few years back at the age of 21 and now have family visiting also, and it's stressful with lots of things... I told them about what has been happening with me, and they call twice a day even if I've seen them that day to get an 'update' - Really fed up of it myself, 5 weeks has felt like a year and on one hand I just don't want to talk or think about it asides from when I go to the psychologist once a  week... But on the other hand, I know that part of this is my problem, that I keep things bottled up inside and then end up getting a bad stomach for example because of it.

Mmm, tough huh....
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Sometimes it's OK to stand still for a bit.  Maybe there is too much emphasis being placed on moving forward.  Maybe sitting and meditating is OK too.

I got the family calling a while back when other family members were overseas.  Fielding all the calls was more exhausting and disruptive and stressful than had I been left alone.
Maybe you could ask them to back off a bit.  Ask them for what you need.

There is a way to go about resolving your issues though.  As you are feeling more stressed I would suggest that that is not the best medium for you to do so.

I agree, tough.  For me, my resolution not to discuss issues with others (due to me withdrawing) ends up with me feeling depressed.  There is a skillful way in which to balance everything.

Good luck with everything.
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Thx, you too.

I'm trying to find a good medium still. There are pros and cons to telling my family everything that is going on with me. Part of my problem is that I am too 'closed' and would rather go things alone - But when I do this, I often am not thinking very logically and could do with someone's outside opinion/advice which puts in order the things I need to do and what exactly.

On the other hand, in being 100% open about everything is exhausting and I hate the once/twice daily call of asking for an update on what happened to me that day. Did I have a bad stomach again in the morning? How much medication did I end up taking? Did I wake up again at 5am? And I have lots of thoughts that I don't want my family knowing and I don't think they need to know either. I want some things for myself and myself only - Or at least that I just tell my psychologist. So between me and him.

Hopefully soon things will calm down and I'll strike a good balance.
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Yes, hopefully.  I would probably set boundaries with your family.
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Haha...

Well, things are still developing.

I just can't believe that I never saw all of these things myself.

I don't know if I mentioned before about this OCD-type thing I have. (Mostly with touching my fingers and thumbs together so that they make 2's, 3's, 5's and 10's - Totaling equal numbers). I've had it for 10 years or so now, so probably since I was 15/16 years old. I never went to a doctor or in to therapy or did anything about it. It never got worse over the last 10 years since having it, just sometimes, it gets worse when I feel anxious or stressed about something. So, only now with all of this other stuff happening (literally the last 5 weeks and having "nothing" before mental-health-wise in my life) do I now realize how this OCD thing and my anxiety are interconnected.

In therapy, it basically came up that my anxiety over certain events has accumulated starting from the age of 15/16 up until now, 25. To my surprise, I had brought up the OCD thing 'in case' it was important to mention (it actually doesn't really bother me) and the psychologist asked "and when did that start?" - To my surprise (or not), it basically started also at the same time, aged 15/16 when a couple of events had happened to me/stuff went on then. I have had this basic 'physical OCD' (equal number thing) for 10 years and never treated it. And now I have come to realize, that albeit, in the past, the 'mental OCD' hasn't been so bad, I've had that also. Now the 'mental OCD', I can realize is bad. In the last 5 weeks since this started, I have been obsessed about my thoughts and have compulsive thoughts also. No doubt, I had this in the past also, but just not as bad, so I didn't see it myself.

Even though I still do have literal things to be anxious about it life, a lot of the anxiety is being caused my the OCD and in me being anxious about being anxious and getting obsessed and carried away with my thoughts and building things up into things that don't need to be.
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Anticipating events generally creates more anxiety for the already stressed.

Working through the events at a younger age should help resolve your other symptoms.
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"Anticipating events generally creates more anxiety for the already stressed.

Working through the events at a younger age should help resolve your other symptoms. "

Totally agree, and that is part of my problem. It's like a self fulfilling prophecy and I need to get out of it.

Went to the psychiatrist this morning and got my 'long/er term' medication. Told him about the OCD thing of course, so he has taken that in to account with the medication he's given me.

I'm staying on the Alprazolam (1-1.5mg) a day for now. I said about it wearing off quickly but he was still adamant that even though Clonazepam would solve this problem, on the other hand, it will make me too drowsy. He said that because I work in computers also so a job sitting in front of a screen for 8 hours, even more so the Clonazepam is a bad idea. So fine, I will go with this and just split the dosage of Alprazolam up during the day.

Tonight I'm starting on half a tablet (10mg) of Paroxetine (Seroxat, Paxil) with my evening meal. After 4 days, I will move my dosage up to 20mg once a day. I need to do this for 2 weeks and then call the psychiatrist to tell him how I'm doing on it and see when I can then come off of the Alprazolam. He said in the meantime to still keep the max 3 tablets a day of Alprazolam but of course be aware over the next couple of weeks to not take it if I feel that I don't need it.

How does that sound like a plan?
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Sounds reasonable.  Many people have expressed concern about the use of paxil primarily due to the discontinuation symptoms they experience when stopping.  Taking paxil would be my main concern.  Starting slowly and building up is a good idea.  Weaning off the other med other a period is also a good idea (people have had issues with alprazolam also).

Your doctor sounds well versed in all the med stuff.  Some seem to have little or no idea and put people on meds and take them off without any thought for side-effects, withdrawal symptoms, etc.

Don't mean to stress you or frighten you.  It sounds like a good plan.
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Yeah, I saw some really bad reviews of this drug also... I don't know if it's this one in particular or generally SSRIs, but we'll see how it goes and hopefully all will be OK with me.

I looked on a couple of sites and people had posted their experiences, 98% were awful reviews of it saying about how the first time they took it, it gave them panic attacks, made them sick, terrible headaches and awful things basically. I took it last night for the first time and all I had was some pains here and there on and off in my head, but nothing that bad, for a couple of hours I had a bit of a buzzy feeling inside of me and also my heart was pounding quite fast at times... But maybe this is where people were mistaken thinking it's giving them panic attacks, where really is just a new drug going around your body - I kept calm as I knew it was just the symptoms of the chemicals in the drug, and I was absolutely fine. If I would have panicked, then I'd probably be posting the same reviews about it!

I also saw awful stories about people coming off of it and how awful it is. But really, when you look at a majority of the posts people were making, they were the stupid ones in not tapering/gradually coming off of it. Without me even taking this medication, I'd know that you need to gradually come off of it. These people were taking 40mg, 60mg (the max you can take) a day, and regardless of even if they even had a lower dosage, they just woke up one morning and went 'cold turkey'  and just stopped it all of a sudden! So not surprising that happened.

Anyway, I am still aware that I'm still going to have a first few ' weird'  days on it, but will get through it. The psychiatrist said that in pretty much all certainty, I will feel a bit nauseous, I will feel a bit disconnected from my body, etc... Fine.

The last thing I need to do is get myself anxious about this and I am keeping very calm and level headed about it. I hope I'll continue like this ;-)

Second meeting with the psychologist tomorrow so am looking forward to that as I am eager to ' get going'  finally and work things out for myself. I need to tell him about the OCD thing also now I've seen it's a problem also and has been bad the last few days... Now more than counting on my hands, I'm doing it in other ways also... But it's all good.. Will sort these things out.

I hope for only good things for me, you and everyone going through these difficult and confusing times ;-)
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I think your doctor explained things very well and has prepared you for taking the medication.  I'm not even sure some doctors increase the med gradually just tell their patients to take 20 or 40 mg's.  ??  Hard to say.

I'll second that too.

In regards to the ocd what I found useful was understanding that the current anxiety wasn't based on present reality.
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" I think your doctor explained things very well and has prepared you for taking the medication.  I'm not even sure some doctors increase the med gradually just tell their patients to take 20 or 40 mg's.  ??  Hard to say. "

I wonder this also. Makes sense to me that if you are guaranteed to have some side effects when starting off on any medication, that for the first few days you will not take the full dosage, but half, like in my case. Then after the 4 days or so, your body should be a little more used to it and maybe and at worst, maybe just the side effects could be  a bit more intensified and last a few more days, but that you've already experienced them a bit before.

"In regards to the ocd what I found useful was understanding that the current anxiety wasn't based on present reality. "

As in you had stuff from your past that was causing the anxiety you currently have?

I saw the psychologist today and he said (and I agree) that even though the hand counting thing I have has been worse in the last week or so, it's something that is not the most important thing to work on now. Hopefully it won't get worse and at least will go back to what it was before like it's been in the last 10 years... not a big deal, but always something to work on for the future maybe.
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Yes.  I mean, yes issues from my past were causing me to become anxious.
What I meant was that I don't need to go through rituals, etc because I can see that there is no basis for that anxiety in this, my current reality.  I'll look up the sentence and post it for you.  It may make more sense than me trying to explain it.

In my experience ocd and anxiety have been a big deal.  I guess they have related themes.
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For sure.

I only really get this OCD thing when I am not doing anything or if my mind isn't being occupied enough.. Like sitting on the bus (same time I have the intrusive thoughts also).

The session with the psychologist the other day wasn't so great. Sorry to be negative. It was literally an hour of 'life coaching' - him telling me basically that all I need to go and do is make friends and connections and that all of this will be solved. I've known these things and have been trying for a year already to do these things. Fine, not making a 100% effort, but I can and am seriously trying now. The psychologist said that I do have the OCD thing with my hands but that it's something that isn't so important to treat now (I see that) and that there are more important things to work on...

But the session with him just totally ignored anything that was going on in my mind and I feel like all of these things would maybe be advantageous to be spoke about. The psychologist, I can see, is just taking the 'simple' approach by saying just to make the changes I need to and don't go in to anything else basically.

I'm not going there for life coaching, if I wanted that then I could just speak with my family and anyway these are things that I have known for a long time, and he doesn't make me push anymore than I have done so in the past or add anything to what I already know.

I don't want for the medication to stop the anxiety and depression and for it to come back at a later time, or when I come off of the meds. I can't even say that in just going out and making some friends will solve everything and that I'll feel OK again... I told him this and he said that I just shouldn't think like that and that WILL solve it... MMM.
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In the process of helping to gib (plasterboard) the bathroom.  Have been waiting to help for days, now just log on and people decide they are ready.  Will post between sheets.

I'll have to get my book and look up that line later.  Sorry for the hassle.

The best way to deal with ocd is to work through it.  I don't think that distracting indefinitely will be that helpful.  Something more important than anxiety?  ??

Obviously something else is going on.  But likely it is just due to more anxiety.  ??

You can change behavior by acting but in my experience the thinking and feeling is also important.  This all comes back to think- feel- do.

Maybe you and your therapist/ therapy aren't a good fit.

Maybe it is a way to improve your self-confidence and stuff like that.  Maybe keeping it simple would work.  I've become avoidant because of my fears and for me telling me to do something isn't helpful.

What is stopping you from making friends then?  I have a personality disorder that means I have problems with relating.  What is stopping you?
Are the friendships and connections happening now that you are trying' 100%'?
If they still aren't happening, and you're trying, then you need to look at what else is going on.
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"Maybe you and your therapist/ therapy aren't a good fit. "

Seems like that is pretty probable. The reason as to why all of this started with me was because I was suppressing my feelings and thoughts and it got worse because of this, so now I am in 'therapy', you'd think this would be the place to get these out of me!?

"Maybe it is a way to improve your self-confidence and stuff like that.  Maybe keeping it simple would work."

I'd like in an ideal world to keep things simple, but I seriously felt worse after the session than before. It made me feel worse to just talk about waiting for the medication to work and be on that for the next few months (or however long it takes) whilst going out and making friends and making some positive changes. I don't want to be on medication to just cover over my anxiety and depression, I feel like I want to explore more in depth as to what is going on in my head. I can't even get to or understand a lot of things, hence, why a psychologist sounded like a good idea! But this is just life coaching, which I don't really need.

The lack of friends is due to circumstance really... Me and my sister relied a lot on each other social wise and she got married a year ago, then I was kind of 'left alone' if you can call it that. Since then I've been trying to make an effort (I know not 100%, but still trying a bit) but nothing has come about really more than speaking to a few people here and there - I have no problems with social interaction, just hasn't really worked out yet. I moved to a new country 3 years ago also, so had 2 years of being very close with my sister and not making friends because we just had each other, now a year of making a semi-effort and in nothing coming about. Just gotten really lonely and unhappy in the last 2 months or so.

All will be good I'm sure. I'm having really bad down days, and I feel them getting worse. I didn't feel depressed before, only anxious, and I now gradually feel my feelings and emotions come out of me, which I guess it a good thing, because before, I felt nothing mentally, it was all just physical problems...
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I just wanted to say that ocd is caused by anxiety its a coping mechanism, i suffer from bad ocd espically where the safety of my children is concerned, i only developed ocd after i started taking panic attacks. Cbt works well for treating ocd its all about exposure and not doing them, but i find once i stop one i bring in new ones. Mental health professionals won't see it as a problem unless its so time consuming that you can't function. If i go to bed alone it can take up to an hour to get there and shopping alone is impossible. If you can identify why you do certain rituals and the thoughts behind them, that helps, like i know going to bed makes me anxious incase something happens to my children so i perform rituals to keep them safe, logically i know it doesn't work but the intrusive thoughts makes me act on them. Anyway my point is if you know what is making you anxious then you will know when your ocd will be worst and you can try to control them even stopping them gradually helps and it proves nothing bad will happen, they really do feed the anxiety and make it worse.
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I still haven't gone and fetched that book.  Some other day maybe.

If I had the option of choosing which T to go to I would opt for a psychoanalyst.  They are good for getting to the core of issues.

You could be feeling depressed due to the medication.  Medication can do that to some people some of the time.

About the ocd stuff and in relation to what inneedofhelp82 said, under expert activity one doctor has written about irrational beliefs.  I don't know if that would be helpful but could be interesting.
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Thanks for your replies ;-)

Yeah, the medication has been really messed up to be honest.

I was told to take 10mg of Paxil for the first 4 days and then go to 20mg on the 5th day. For the first 4 days on the 10mg, I had some side effects such as only being able to sleep max 4 hours, feeling nauseous and bad headaches.

I moved to the 20mg, and that was something out of this world! Was a very bad experience. I didn't manage to sleep all night, I vomited in the morning, terrible headaches, felt totally wired or something (or as I can imagine). Eyes wide open hardly blinking, head buzzing like crazy, couldn't focus on anything etc. Then felt after like I had a bad hangover or something. Every time I would move my head or open my eyes, I felt extremely nauseous and head swooshing around etc.

Psychiatrist said to go back to 10mg, so I did that. Even now though after 7 days since starting to take it, I have side effects from the 10mg such as sweating a lot on and off, bad headaches especially in my temples and sometimes feeling nauseous...

I'm giving this time and being patient, but there is only so much I can take lol.

I was recommended to give it 7-10 days to see if the side effects go and if not, then go back to the psychiatrist and switch to something else. So we'll see what happens.

The psychoanalyst sounds good... I'm going to go back once more to my current psychologist and tell him how I am feeling (worse) and be honest in saying that the last session with him is maybe not the approach that I need and I felt worse from it. Will see what he says. I was reading an article somewhere and it was so true about my situation also. The article said about this kind of therapy and how it's like telling a badly depressed person to just go and take a walk in the sun or eat some dark chocolate and they'll feel better from it. That's how I feel! There is no point in just giving me life coaching before the problems have even been addressed. There is no point in telling me to just go out and make friends when I still feel terrible inside and can't physically do it, and in turn, it makes me feel worse both mentally and physically because that's all the 'help' I am getting here.
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That's like an analogy I have.  A bit like when a severely hypothermic person is given a blanket, a map and a compass and told to work it out for themselves.
I don't think that many health professionals understand that we can't (at least not at this time).

I would probably opt for a different med.

I hope you start to feel better soon.
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Thanks ;-)
Good analogy!!

Went to the psychiatrist. Explained everything. He first said that because of all of the side effects from the Paxil, I need to stop it. Agreed. But then he said that for 2 reasons, he doesn't want to put me on a new SSRI. 1. Because I was so sensitive and couldn't take the first one and 2. I am not eating enough. He said that if I'm not doing this basic thing, then he can't give me another medication to take and that's probably why the side effects were worse also.

Story goes on but basically he agreed in the end to give me new medication on the agreement that I 1. Make more of an 'effort' to eat and to work on that and 2. That I am around people more so that they can see I am eating and see my general situation.

So my new meds are:
From 20mg Paxil to 50mg Sertraline (Zoloft, Lustral) - 25mg for the first 4 days and then 50mg on the 5th day. Then once the 50mg starts to work, move to 100mg a day.
From 1.5mg Alprazolam to 2 x 1mg daily Lorazepam
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I didn't know that not eating was a contraindication for meds.  Many people with eating disorders are given meds to help stabilize their symptoms.  Guess he was trying to make a point.

Hopefully you'll do better with eating, the new meds and socializing.

Do they definitely believe that the weight issue is psych related and not physical?
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I took the Zoloft yesterday afternoon for the first time and the Lorazepam an hour before bed.

Slept OK, 5 hours - Seems like that's the max I can do so far, for quite a few weeks now. But better than nothing, especially like when I was on the Paxil! That stuff kept me up all night.
Felt nauseous in the morning a bit, but it passed after an hour or so. I REALLY want to get back to living my life and wanted to go to work today so made a deal with myself that in order that I am allowed to go to work, that I need to eat breakfast before I leave for work. And hoorah, I ate some toast and it was OK.

So have been at work, which is nice. Asides from feeling totally wired or something and I think people can even see it, but whatever... must look like I am speed or some come-down at times! Felt extremely sleepy at times and at others, wide awake and hardly blinking... then the weirdest is when I am feeling in between, (most of the time). Eyes darting all over the place, can't focus at times, but my eyes are half closed because I feel sleepy. Haha, anyway, I know that this happens to everyone at the beginning and then it wears off, so looking forward to that. So asides from a bit of a headache all day and the feeling nauseous feeling in the morning, nothing else really and hope it'll stay like that!

My appetite is better today also, and I am certain that it had gone because of the Paxil... that really did me in. I still don't have a massive appetite, but still had toast for breakfast, vegetables and some cheese for lunch and a yoghurt drink and well, 7.30pm now and leaving work, so will need to hunt for a bit of food when I get home later!

The appetite thing has been caused because of many things. First was anxiety, then I dealt with that via the Alprazolam, then on the Paxil my stomach felt full and I felt nauseous all of the time so couldn't eat, then at times my appetite has gone maybe 90% because of being at different stages in all of this, depressed and frustrated basically. But like I say, even an improvement today since stopping the Paxil and hope it'll get better still.
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I'm glad you had a good day today.  I hope you have an even better one tomorrow.

The darting eyes can be due to hypervigilance due to anxiety.  It could be that you are sensitive to what others around you may see and think.  Don't stress about others just focus on what you need to in order to function and move forward.
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Thanks, but think I spoke too soon...

Was sick on the bus on the way home last night from work, and was sweating and had pains in my arms.
All night was vomiting, ended up getting very bad so went to the hospital in the early hours via ambulance and spent a few hours there. They did blood tests, urine tests, and ECG to check my heart as it was irregular and put me on an IV with some fluids.

Saw the hospital's psychiatrist (who I had originally seen all those weeks back) and explained everything. He says that I have mild Serotonin syndrome so no more of those meds for me!

Still feeling pretty bad and the IV they'd given me with the fluid, I think, gave that medication still in my blood system a good buzzing around so I felt very 'wired' after and shaking/over-energy both brain-wise! Was also sick when I came from the hospital also. Guess I have a few days feeling like this until the medication has left my system?

They said to go back to my psychiatrist on Sunday and see about a non SSRI med - I don't know anything about meds, but hope that there would be something suitable for me, we'll see.

Asides from that, it's possible that I may go back to England to get this sorted as it's too difficult here with lack of support and people to be around. In England I can be with my Father and his wife 24/7 and have all the help and support I need. May not be possible time-wise, as I still have a job and life here. But my health is most important and I have gotten nowhere really in 5 weeks since this started.
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hydration..good nutrition..excersize and meditation. do something to help someone else..get out of your own head. forgiveness of yourself and anyone who has hurt you. alcohol is a depressant. do not isolate. pray.
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