I'm new here. I spotted a post re: an antidepressent I had been on a while back and felt driven to add my 2c yesterday. I've been reading the contributor posts since. I'm hoping this will help with feeling so alone with what ails me.
I've had clinical depression since about age 9. (That doesn't mean I was diagnosed at (9)..on the contrary, I come from a family that would rather hear a relative had cancer than any type of mental problem. I suppose that may have a little something to do with the fact that Neurological disorders and mental illness is rampant (especially on my Mum's side).
I say I was clinically depressed at 9 because I was suicidal. No abuse. No yelling. Not even a raised voice. I always felt that somebody made a mistake. Like, I wasn't SUPPOSED to be in this life. As if somebody didn't give me full disclosure..and I agreed, but I'm fighting this on the grounds ALL was not revealed to me. (ha) The thought process is funny..the depression not so much.
I wanted to be gone. I wanted to go back and have "them" fix it. I didn't know who "they" were..I just knew someone made a mistake. There was something wrong with me and I knew it. I also knew those people (family) weren't going to help me. They called a suicide attempt by an Aunt an accident. (Registered Nurse. Prides herself on her pharmacology know~how. Two bottles of Valium and sedatives. = NOT an accident). Even I knew it at 9. The fierce denial frightened me. They would freely disguss anothers Diabetes..heart murmer, Abstructive Bowel Disease..they spoke of cancer with ease. But not mental illness. God Forbid. I hated them for their ignorance. I was repulsed I was related to such morons. And I knew I'd probably never be able to find help.
I pretended to be fine until 17 and it was hard to admit it at all. I've always been aflicted by chronic sleep. Depression. Suicidal Idiation. Hypersomnia. Hypnagogic Hallucinations. Walking, talking, reading, phoning, texting, bathing, dressing..all while sound asleep.
I have a prolonged (and fuzzier than usual) wake/dream state. I react to whatever's in my dream. I run, fight, phone 911. I hide..it's terrifying. I have total recall of the events. I even know I'm asleep. But I'm virtually incapable of waking up..until I wake up.
I don't realize I'm walking outside, or ran to a neighbor's house, all I see is what is in my dream. If I'm running down Main Street at Disneyland in my dream..I'm running down Main Street. I say 'excuse me' when I bump Mickey Mouse..I stop to buy a churro. I stumble on a pebble on the cobblestone. But it's a dream. In reality, I have opened the front door and started running down the street..until I run, head~on, into a tree.
I've phoned 911 because I dreamt someone phoned to tell me some scary person was breaking into my house. I was panicked. I heard them get in. I hid in a closet after sliding on the floor, with 911 on the line. I told them I had to whisper since the criminals will hear me. They kept asking WHO phoned to tell me. After a while I started to wake-up. I phoned back and asked the Supervisor if they had gotten a call from my number..or was I dreaming. I explained the disorder and he played me the tape. I heard myself, on tape. I sounded 4 yrs old. Like a child. Wow.
After seeing General Practicioners, Psychiatrists and Neurologists I was always told the same thing: Depression causes sleep disorders. So I began the antidepressent crap shoot. All of them. Everything sedated me. I already slept for 17..18..22 hours per day. I didn't need sedation.
I've been through bouts of complete non-function. After going through all antidepressents I was prescribed an MAOi. EVERYTHING sedated me.
..and then I heard:
What's worse..? The depression or the chronic sleep?
Is the hypersomnia and sleep/dream disturbances causing the depression..
or is the depression causing chronic sleep and these horrific dream-state hallucinations?
Gee..I don't know, Doctor. I was kinda hoping YOU would be able to shed some light. Why don't we fix one of them..and go from there. Why do I have to have either one? Why have these so~called professionals said "..well..I'm stumped"..
(?) I've been told Narcolepsy's symptoms can be treated, but there's no official diagnosis until the Autopsy.
So I've donated my brain to the Dept. of Neurology at Stanford. They need brains so they can do research on sleep disorders and disturbances. I feel good about willing my brain for this. I've asked that they tell me (even though I am gone) what they have concluded re: my disorder. If they won't know until the Autopsy then so be it. I hope they do.
I sleep like in a sleep coma. I always required more sleep and decompression time than anyone else. But this has progressed and is disabling. I don't understand how anyone manages to keep on, keeping on.
I defy anyone on the planet to try functioning when they are incapable of waking up. Truth be told, I was consumed with anger and resentment for a while. I wanted everyone to have this..and I wanted them all to phone me..crying..saying "..I don't know what to do..I slept through my alarms.. I can't wake up..there's something wrong with me".. I wanted to be able to say try living with it, day~in, day~out. Try having to pat yourself on the back because you washed your face and brushed your teeth. Just try it. Because that's how bad bad gets. I hadn't opened my mail in about 9 months..only left the couch for 20 mins per week, to go to the grocery store at off~hours. I slept the rest of the time.
No one knows how incapable one is to will depression or sleep disorders away. I know. I tried. I really tried. It didn't work. Antidepressents sedate me. Treating the Narcolepsy/Cataplexy/Hypersomnia/Hypnagogic Hallucinations/
Non~functionality consists of direct and indirect stimulents which give me approximately 3 1/2 to 4 hours of awake time..but it's not that alert. After that I drop. Groggy. As if a blurry, distorted haze has settled in. As if a fog rolled in. I feels as if something is pushing my eyelids to close.
I promised I wouldn't take myself out until I tried my best to find a solution. It's taken quite a bit for me to summon the strength and try again. I don't have faith in any of the physicians I have seen recently. I spoke to the Brain Donation Program Director at Stanford for a few mins yesterday and I was stunned to hear about her own sleep issues. But she has this busy, interesting, highly functioning life. She is "normal". I'm not. I have been weepy lately..I can't snap out of it. I usually stay in a kind of flat affect~sort of non~emotional state. Depression and tiredness taking over everything. But I suppose reading more and trying to uncover an answer makes me weepy. I realize how much time..how long it's een. How I've never been "normal".
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