Well, I would say 3 main sources.
1. This Depression forum
2. Your Psychiatrist
3. Go online and find a good local Depression and anxiety support group. They are free and they usually meet once a week. It's a good place for you to go where you can be around others with your condition that understand. These people can often become a great scorce of help and guidance to you as most have much experience dealing with the dynamics of this dissorder.
There's little doubt having the internet is our biggest saving grace. I cannot imagine having been through the last decade without at least being able to see in forums there are others in the same boat. To be able to talk to others is such a bonus I really feel the horrors thinking of how alone so many must have felt for so long throughout the past.
I think that is indeed the best support you can get as you get both people trying to help and often some real and valid tips and direction which saves people so much time working it out, or never doing so.
Depending on your community there is usually some group, strangers all usually, but all people who will accept you willingly with no obligation.
I was in one such group (GROW it is called) in one city here in OZ that a young lady attended, and said nothing at all to anybody for 12 months. She became the group leader after finally understanding it was all about giving and receiving trust as no one is there to hurt.
Another thing I've been involved with is email groups, usually people from depression forums (there are many) with a common issue that want to talk separately but not one on one. Like about 4 - 5 people is a good size.
The drawback on such contact of course is with 5 depressed people it's very hard to maintain contact and it can easily fall apart. The last one I joined in on only lasted one email as one of the others, a young, very troubled lady, asked immediately to meet any of the males. AAAAh, no. 4 people ran immediately, including me.
But I've been in others that lasted a year and so on. Nothing permanent and face to face contact is not even discussed as that removes the advantages of such a group.
I've attended a couple of face to face meetings set up by a D forum site and was it uncomfortable? Oh yeah. It was like "So, what's your nickname?" You answer and they go quiet as they flick through their memory for what you've said about yourself etc. Like being frisked in public, very bad feeling. It didn't succeed for anyone actually as it was just too confronting after being so open.
If nothing is around, start your own group. Notice on a shopping centre billboard etc. Most have such. Lot of work if you keep running it but I'm only suggesting starting it. others will want to be in charge, always.
This forum is good but it isn't really appropriate for crisis management. It feels a little superficial in the sense that I don't feel I can discuss that sort of stuff here.
I don't think people want to be bombarded with negativity all the time. How does one even express some of that stuff anyway?
The doctor has been the one who has put me in this position. He talks about funding, or lack of, and won't do anything about the problem. He doesn't care if I have to struggle to get through each day (and I mean really struggle).
It's been over 14 months now with pretty limited support, if that. Things have been getting worse. They don't care. I almost don't care. Well I don't in the evenings when my mood slumps and things seem infinitely worse.
Talking here doesn't help me work through the issues I have which a T should be helping me address.
There aren't any support groups in my area.
I've also had some really bad experiences on-line where people haven't understood my experience of the disorder and have pretty much made me feel useless because their preferred treatment approach wasn't effective.
Skill-based stuff hasn't worked for me as my issues stem for early childhood which has probably affected development and ability to utilize some interventions.
Depression is probably the best bit out of the whole lot!
Sorry for moaning. I just feel stuck and with very few, if any, options left.
At night all my protective factors seem to go out the door too. I just don't know if I can justify going through this anymore. Seems no point we I can't seem to change and nothing else ever does.
First thing I should say to you is these forums are exactly the right place for you to be negative, bring out what troubles you. Not all in one go as not even you can deal with it all at once.
Too many think these forums are about always being "positive" and anything but pleasant platitudes isn't "support". I'm afraid that the process of recovery isn't pleasant, positive and easy. It's full of negativity, hard times and even harder confrontation.
I do hate the health system that denies you the help you need. Why do people keep trying to defend it? I don't get it, really, as only those who can afford it get help and that is dreadful. It defies the word "society" or "community". Animal Farm stuff, some are more equal than others, right?
I'm so sorry you've had some bad online experiences. Sounds like people with one track minds insisting you obey their rules when they need to obey your rules to help you. Not comply with your rules, obey them so they understand them.
Just issuing "Do this...." type statements etc is pointless for depressed people as we tend to do the opposite for starters.
Have you been able to talk it all out at all? I mean, actually say all the things that are down deep? Or have you not got that far at all and still really don't even know what all the issues are?
One suggestion I have is, given you mention childhood, talking to anyone who knew you and your family back then. This is how I uncovered the why, when, where, and what of my depression and it just eased my mind so much I can't tell you.
A sibling if you have any, older best.
Another idea is to pick someone and ask them if they would try and help, mainly by listening and asking questions of you to clarify things. From a forum I am suggesting. You have time to consider the people from their answers and attitude etc and I don't restrict this to just this forum. There are many such forums and many good people, although some forums are full of the "nasties", the trolls who just want to hurt. You may have felt that elsewhere.
The plus with using an anonynous person via a dummy email etc is that you can withdraw anytime without rancour if it isn't going well for you. Many will say they are willing but it's your job to decide if they would be useful as willing isn't enough.
I'd suggest you join a forum or two more and just put a summary on, usually a welcome page, and ask if anyone is willing to try helping.
It's putting yourself out there I know but if there's nothing else why not? It's your life at stake Jaq and that is more valuable than anything else in this life. Much as we feel today it's worthless it isn't. It's a fabulous gift, one that is gone in a flash anyway so just keep working OK.
The problem is I have a hard time being respectful, etc when there's so much rubbish in my head and I want to put it out there and unload.
OK, light bulb moment. This has come from the past too where people erect arbitrary boundaries and reject you (won't accept you) for being honest and speaking from the heart. It's OK to speak about mildly or superficially bad things but not the really ugly stuff. Perhaps it's unfair of me to think of people here as shallow. Many aren't.
Perhaps the negative stuff is so overwhelming I can't deal with it and it's convenient for me to attribute not being able to communicate it or my distress to the forum.
Maybe the problem is it is so raw I can't even put words to it. Pre-verbal stuff.
The mhs misdiagnose, mistreat and traumatize me then leave me to pick up the pieces. So not only do I have my original issues but I have all their stuff to deal with too. Factor in lost time, decreased functioning, lack of support ... It's a nightmare.
The mhs defend it because then they don't have to take responsibility for it. One T said that they even project their hopelessness onto the patient. Like any patient needs that. That means I feel hopeless plus they make me feel hopeless and inadequate, etc. Very helpful.
I get frustrated because even people who have less severe symptoms, etc get more support. ?? The more distressed clients seem to be routinely overlooked.
Probably I'm unwell enough to warrant being in hospital and how much would that then cost the system just because they couldn't be bothered with offering appropriate support. Lucky for them I don't trust any of them and won't be in a hurry to engage with any of them.
I don't really know what the outcome will be for me. I'll kill myself, I'll get sectioned, I'll be offered more intensive support, I'll snap out of it. At this rate, minimum I see me harming myself (and because that really isn't an option I'll end up going the whole hog).
Many animals get treated far better than people with mh issues.
Some empathy would have been nice from them. Sometimes it's easier to lump all your issues onto someone else though (and then hope they leave or better still fight back so you can attribute everything to them and then ban them). It makes your little world nice and cozy and 'in control' -for a while at least.
I hate when people say they're cured when they clearly aren't.
Personally I don't think they even understood the disorder they were advocating.
I must still feel hurt by their comments and actions.
Some health professionals don't understand mh. Some don't seem to understand it in its entirety. We're not sick because we're weak. Actually we're probably sick because we're strong. I have found one expert at medhelp quite derogatory too with regards to some comments they have made about mh and people with m illness.
I just read a comment by Dr Gould on the mh expert forum. He was saying that if we can't concentrate then our mind is elsewhere and on other issues (which perhaps need confronting and addressing).
This is perhaps why it can be so difficult to initiate things. I've felt shut down for the last ?three months and haven't felt like doing anything.
I get told to do stuff but it's not usually all that effective (mainly because there is other stuff on my mind taking all my energy).
You're right. You just reminded me of an old cmhn I had. He told me not to take any more meds so I took the lot. Maybe we all just rebel because we feel invalidated on some level.
There are lots of issues. I've had one good T but we never had the time to work through a lot of the stuff. She gave me 2-3 sessions a week for the 10 months I saw her. It sounds like a lot but because of how badly things had deteriorated it wasn't. I almost feel like I am back where I started before she came (maybe a little better and a little worse). I had four family members die within one month before I saw her so perhaps it was understandable. I still don't think I should have gotten this depressed when I was seeing a T. Things have slipped a lot in the past 14 months.
My T said her leaving was far too early in the process.
My family moved so it is really only them I can talk too. My family are not the easiest to talk too plus my mum has severe head injuries and she often can't remember or remembers differently. See will tell me she didn't see this or doesn't know that but with some prompting she'll acknowledge she did or does.
It can be confusing. It makes me question my own reality (and sanity) at times. Maybe mine is off too but due to my mh issues. ??
I have two brothers and two sisters. They experienced childhood much differently.
For some reason I seemed to be the one who got beaten the most. My older sister was a whiss and my younger brother and sister perhaps too fragile.
At times my childhood just seems like a bunch of different dreams that I can't place.
I don't think my life is really worth anything. I am just a burden to everyone. I don't contribute. I also don't feel optimistic about my ability to change.
Is it a gift? I understand that life can be short, too short sometimes, and sometimes I feel stressed that I don't have a lot of time but then the reality is that I struggle so much, especially now, it seems that none of it is worth it.
These thoughts are much different to the ones I have at night. Not sure why I crash so badly then.
Thank you so much for listening and responding. Usually I would feel better from having vented but for some reason there is this deep-seated anxiety.
I don't know what's going on with me anymore and not even sure if I should be worried or not.
Yeah, the past prisons we had to build around ourselves restrict our attempts at recovery. We are deadly afraid of talking about the bad things hiding down deep in our memories. Or even at the front of our minds, but we will not let it become verbal as it's too embarrassing or frightening to risk letting loose. And, of course, there are things down there we do know but don't if you follow that. Things that happened but we've trodden down so hard on it it can't be seen at the moment. They do emerge and shine lights on the why etc of what happened to us.
I have a lot of anger/rage and have found a way to let it out. You'll probably think it wrong, most would. I use Facebook and find people I disagree with and attack their every word. Then I attack their persona if they get abusive and try to attack me. I haven't done it for a while but it satisfies the "bad" me. The bit that wants to hurt those in my life who hurt me. Which I can't do of course. Prison would be the result.
So I use FB people. I don't pick on innocent poeple, just people who are abusive in their treatment of others and think they "rule" in their little FB kingdom. Mostly they fight back, hard, which is good as I can let out my poison without hurting others really. Most of these people seem to not care what is said to them, ever. Or at least act that way.
Some call it trolling, and I do it on FB. Only. For therapy.
As I write here and other D forums. For others and me. For therapy. Here I have to be as close to the real me as I can but my angry bits still burst out here too. They didn't used to but you know what? I'm fine with it as it is exactly how I feel. If I'm angry I show it. On forums like these though you do need to be aware of who you are talking to and provide the real care needed for many. I get angry about alternative treatments, and ECT.
Not sure why I wrote those things, maybe to demonstrate to you it's OK to be open as what can happen? Someone might use CAPS in response. That's about it though.
Are people here shallow? I'd say absolutely not, the reverse is what I think of people here. To me those that never suffer depression are the shallow ones as they are never required to delve into their depths and examine why they think what they do. They just float through life without a thought.
The only things I wonder about people on these sites are why they post and then don't respond when someone replies, why they ask something and then immediately deny what any response says and why people don't even say "Thanks" to those who do reply.
But I know the answers to those, as do you. It's simple. They are depressed and unable to deal with things so just do what they can and respond in a negative way often. So, not shallow, just restricted by the illness I think. I actually believe people on D forums are the nicest of any I know. Immediate family excluded of course. I like talking with other D people as WE KNOW.
I'm not sure what country you are in but MHS (Mental Health Service??) sounds like the UK. Correct me if that's wrong.
From what you say about them I couldn't see why it would be worth attending.
Unless you are able to be really strong, tough in fact, and just stand up to them and say "NO" when they put it on you. Do you know what I mean? I guess it's too overwhelming for an individual to act in that manner as bureaucracies just crush us. But some of us have to do it or it won't change, ever. I'm in Australia where we can change doctors whenever we like so it's seemingly much better for us here. Particularly with private health care too.
You see an end to things as a way out and that is a big danger sign. It's something you need to deal with before it grows too big and becomes overwhelming. Not sure how to with your system in place but it must be done for yourself Jaq.
I was suicidal for a long time. And eventually it grew that large I had to try it. I did, twice. But both times I pulled back at the edge and said "No". After the second time I knew I wouldn't go that far again as I knew I wanted to live. I still get suicidal thoughts but now I know they are simply that. Thoughts. Not instructions or an inevitable end. Just thoughts.
But, until I got there I thought it would be easy. If it was this forum would not exist. I've met quite a few people who tried and failed. But they managed to partially destroy their body or brain. And were then too frightened to try again. That horrifies me.
I have decided to reply to your post up to the paragraph where you mention "Some health professionals". OK. Otherwise this will be "War and Peace". I will reply to the next part maybe later today, our time. I feel it's better to just consider this part first, all is a lot to take in. For You and I.
I couldn't agree more about the health "profession". Mostly I regard these as morons I'm afraid. Here we have docs in every suburb and their title is General Practitioner, which means they are the front line for all illnesses. The truth is they usually know very little and care even less.
Their main role seems to be writing medical certificates for those who want a day off or just doling out meds, with little investigation. If something stumps them totally they seem to often just say they don't know what to do about that. You usually have to ask to be referred to someone who has a clue. They are reluctant to prescribe many meds because they know little about them. Toook me over a year to get a valid pain relief med from this level of incomptence. Eventually when they seemed to have finished the appointment I just said "I'm not leaving until you prescribe something for my pain." Until then they just said to use the stronger headache tablets.
The last two times I have seen GP's I was so angry I could have ripped their arms off. Second last was a female GP who asked me if I was imagining my pain. I didn't say a word after that, I would have attacked her if I let go. I sat ther saying nothing until she remembered the prescriptions I was there for.
This may sound bad too but that lady left the practice due to breast cancer apparently. She returned after succesful treatment and I was told she had returned. I rang to make an appointment with her but they said she had moved to another State.
You know why I wanted to see her? I wanted to look her in the eye and say "Did you imagine your breast cancer?" and walk out.
Empathy? No, most couldn't spell the word.
I have a psychiatrist I was referred to by accident 10 years ago. He's fantastic. He listens, talk with me, not at me, expresses his opinion about life and things I bring up and he treats me as a friend more than anything. I truly enjoy seeing him, we always have a chat and a laugh. As opposed to being suicidal and near vegetative when I first saw him.
He's told me how ignorant he was about mental health too. He described a session at uni where they were all watching a depressed person who couldn't speak and he says they all laughed and couldn't understand why he just sat there. He says he's now ashamed of that. He also told me he had often thought of trying an anti depressant because many of them, the students, thought it made you high, as in "happy pills".
That was years back for him but it is what he should do. Act like you and me. I've told him if he moves I am too. Bit like that movie "What about Bob" huh? Nah, I know the boundaries.
You say you think we're sick because we're strong. I have an inkling of what you might mean but I was wondering if you could expand on that. There's no question at all that we are not sick because we are weak. I do think that to go on living with this illness shows enormous courage and strength. If I'd been told what I'd go through when I was 20 I'm sure I would have tried to leave this life. A bit at a time you just seem to keep punching back somehow. So that is strong. Is that what you mean?
What's a cmhn?
Dr Gould states the bleeding obvious.
If we are depressed, deeply so and for long periods, our mind is totlly obsessed with the illness and why and how to get through it and how to just survive. So of course our mind is elsewhere. Lack of concentration, inability to act, lack of motivation and memory issues are all basic D symptoms and are so hard to deal with. So many actually think they have lost intelligence and that makes them feel even worse.
By no means do we lose any intelligence and it is not a weakness. It's just how strong and dominant this awful illness is. I say rebelling is good. It shows we can say NO to things when we feel like it. Even if it's just a reaction to upset someone. I've done it all my life as far as I know. Rejected any authority just because. It's actually because of how my father lectured me constantly all my young years. Built in nagging, beautiful.
Issues. Losing family members is not something you just get over. I lost my mother and little sister at age 10, fatal car accident. No grieving allowed, no funeral, just get on with it. You can get over the grief but you can never forget. You just learn to live without them somehow. It is important to grieve properly though, I wasn't permitted, my siblings and I. We all got the gift of depression. Excellent. So, yes, it needs to be talked out alright.
Your family moved, leaving you with no support? That would have increased the stress as you lost your family connection that was right there. Have you considered moving to where they are? If things are so bad for you where you are why not? Seriously.
I tried getting my father to talk for decades and he never would. I eventually cut him out of my life as every time I had contact I'd end up angry and sad, worse than no contact. It's been much better since I stopped contact. He tried to continue by going to my partner and so on which just made me angrier and caused me to be extremely blunt. That worked. It's what I wanted. And needed, some peace of the family side at last.
You say you were beaten but the other kids not as much. That right there is enough for anyone to suffer what you do. That is way up there on the must talk it out list. Things like why me and not the others? What did I do (probably nothing)? I assume your father did it. Why? Depressed? Drinker? Drugs? Just angry? Maybe abused himself, no excuse but clarifies. Things to sort through.
You mention 4 siblings and comment on 3. What about the other brother? What did he do during this?
I think it's quite normal for children to get so many episodes of violence all mixed up. We try to adapt and deal with it but it's not right and it is too much for us. We do survive it but we have it all in our head and it needs to come out somehow. Talking it out does relieve the pressure. Sounds tame and not a solution but actually saying what happened, where you remember, can make it less scary to think about. Whereas holding it and the anger inside for so long just eats away at you and gives you that lack of self value. Another part of depression. It loves any spot it can feed on.
Of course your life is of great value. Any life is. You feel like a burden and sometimes you will be. I am, why not you? But at other times in my life I've done the carrying so it tends to even out during a life Jaq. The last thing we should accept when depressed is we don't deserve any help or support. We do and should grab for every tiny bit as it becomes available.
You don't feel optimistic, is it a gift? Oh Yeah, it's a gift alright. But it's not one you just get, you have to work for it. By surviving, continuing treatment despite the incompetence. By reading as much about the illness as you can until you can sit on a doc's office and lecture them about what they need to do.
Initially when I needed docs I still thought they KNOW what to do. After some time on the trail I realised they know virtually nothing and only really bounce our knowledge around between us. The doc I have, the one I love to see, I consider I have trained him, about me. And I don't feel like trying to train another one. It's damned hard training so called professionals in their so called field of expertise.
But we do you know. Because it is we who are the real experts on our iwn individual illness. We have the keys in our minds and their job is simply to help us use them and recover. Do you follow that? It's very important and something most don't get. They all just keep taking meds, going to the doc or the therapist and sit there waiting for them to shout "Eureka". They can't as they don't know the answers to US. We do.
You say you crash badly at night. Does that mean you feel better in the morning? If so you are describing the diurnal mood variation that is common to deep depressions. Big term but it just means our mood varies naturally during the day. Most feel worse in the morning and improve during the day, getting better the longer we stay awake. That's why so many of us stay up late you know. But there are also lots who experience the opposite. OK'ish early, worst before sleeping. It is a symptom.
That little thing there, the mood change during the day, is part of what you learn as you research our illness. You know what it is, have the explanation and as such it's no longer a mystery. Just a symptom you know will occur and work with. Follow? Learn. I did learn so much from these forums actually. Just reading the things people said and by posting to them with comments. It's quite amaxing how a little mystery that freaked us out can suddenly be revealed as something that is expected to occur as a symptom.
You say you feel anxious after writing this post and don't know why. Might I suggest it's because you didn't just vent. You addressed it to me following an invitation to do so. Naturally you would have been worried what I, or anyone who replied, might make of you and your life.
What I make of what I see so far is someone who has hope, crushed down deep, waiting to come out. Just lost in an unforgiving health system right now. Someone who deserves a break and will keep hanging in somehow until it starts to ease. And it will Jaq. Mine did after nearly a lifetime but I avoided it most of my life. Drank it away, but not far.
Sure you should be worried. You have an illness that is not being treated appropriately. That's what we all face Jaq, making sense of the process.
That's kind of an unhealthy way to express your anger.
I think it just gives you an outlet with little if any resolution.
Ultimately you're just working to protect that wounded, vulnerable part of you.
Perhaps you disclosed that to warn people off or maybe to even justify it. ??
I get angry about medication and ect. I think some alternative treatments have a place maybe as an adjunct to other treatments. I don't think leeches have a role to play in the treatment of depression. Just mentioned that because someone posted about it recently.
My impression is that some here are a bit ??. Maybe shallow is the wrong word. I feel that some people aren't that well grounded. I just sense that some haven't experienced adversity and been humbled by it.
Some people just want a response and don't want to engage. Some people deny comments because they feel threatened. Sometimes people take the thanks for granted. I sometimes just assume that it's OK. I do thank experts though.
Restricted by lack of insight I would say. Which is essentially due to illness.
I mainly talk to others when I'm feeling really down or uncontained.
I use to chat a bit on realmentalhealth.com. It was an avoidance strategy. Sometimes I don't think chatting is all that helpful. Sometimes it is though.
I've made my concerns known, as has my GP.
My GP is waiting to hear back from the director of mh. If he's not satisfied he said he'd take it to the Health and Disability commissioner. I was looking up the net and the service has already breached some of my rights (to adequate treatment, etc).
I can change GP but have limited options regarding hospital services.
I refuse to have anything more to do with my health service. To not provide support during particularly stressful periods and then not to address issues with my treatment plan. I'm not doing it. Not without the support of an independent specialist. These people just don't have the experience or skill to deal with me or my issues.
I see death as being the only real legitimate solution. I'm tired of all the rubbish I've been put through by the service.
Wishing myself better doesn't work, my GP can't do anything or is reluctant to do anything as he knows the options aren't in my best interest. The mhs don't get it.
At least Hensley doesn't see I have a problem. That is reassuring.
I think working with my last T helped with the safety stuff. I also think that some action I took acted as a huge deterrent. More reason to get it right next time.
I became quite engrossed in some of those sites that suggested lethal methods. I think I am probably one of those people you talk about.
I have a good GP. Although he's let me struggle away for over a year so perhaps not that good.
The GP's at the medical practice I attend are good.
It was perhaps a valid question. I can see how that would make you mad if you were in severe pain.
I walked out on my GP once. Not even sure what for now. Now I usually just sit and work through everything.
Maybe just as well she left. Maybe now that's she's been sick herself she will treat her patients with a little more respect.
The relationship you have with your psychiatrist sounds similar to the one I have with my GP. My GP says he's seen me at my best and my worst. I even told him I had thoughts of harming his family because I thought he had betrayed me. I wanted to hurt him as he had hurt me. At least we've both moved on. He understands.\
My GP never specialized in mh but he knows a damn sight more than the guys in the mhs. Most is just common sense stuff too.
My T left. I probably would have traveled. God, anywhere but Auckland. She is now in the UK.
I don't see that seeking good medical care violates boundaries.
Probably just as well. Long posts can be a bit of a struggle sometimes.
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