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Avatar universal

Please help.

Hi, everyone. This is a long one...

This is my first time posting on a forum like this, but I'm here because I'm at my wit's end. I was diagnosed with general anxiety, OCD, and depression in high school (age 16). I started seeing a therapist and taking Prozac (with no side effects), and things got a lot better. Even with the depression and OCD, I was an outgoing, optimistic kid. I was heavily involved in music, got good grades, and couldn't wait to graduate and go away to college.

Fast forward three years, and I'm currently in the midst of my third relapse. I'm 21 and in my final year of school, but graduating a year later due to my first incident in 2013. When I came to college, I stopped seeing a therapist (still took the meds)...but I also started partying for the first time. I'd barely had a sip of alcohol in high school. I went through a nasty breakup and started drinking to combat the depression. I had several bad experiences that year that resulted in me drinking more and becoming an incredibly bitter person, and ended up having to take a medical leave for several months.

Once I got back into counseling and back on meds (this time Zoloft), I started doing much better. I quit drinking heavily, went back to school,  and met this amazing girl who I ended up dating for almost a year and a half. That being said, we smoked weed almost every day in that time period. I eventually ran out of meds and since the doctors near my school are difficult to reach, I reasoned I was doing well enough and didn't need to refill the scrip (stupid, I know). Less than a year later, I started having panic attacks, which I had never had before. They led to me breaking things off with this girl...the relationship was becoming pretty toxic at this point anyway, but the anxiety made things so much worse. I had to leave in the middle of the semester for two weeks.

Luckily, I got those weeks excused, went back on the Zoloft, and came back to school. This time around, I definitely felt side effects. I felt like I was in a fog, my emotions were blunted...but I was able to salvage the semester. I started drinking again (albeit less than before), started seeing this great new guy, and one day shortly after we became official I was laying in bed thinking about him and...bam. Another panic attack.

It's gotten to the point where my parents aren't comfortable sending me back there due to all that's happened, and I don't blame them in the slightest. I've lied to them countless times and they have a hard time trusting me, which is killing me because all I've ever wanted to do is make them proud. I just don't know who I am anymore. I've changed so much these pay three years, none of it for the better. I've considered that I have a substance abuse problem. I don't need to drink/smoke, I've just always felt better when I do, and the environment at school makes it so easy. But now I know I need to stop for good -- it doesn't do anything for me anymore. I should be relieved that my parents are  willing to even put me through school (I'd live at home and commute), but now I'm seriously depressed at the thought of not going back. I broke things off with the guy and it hurt so much, I feel like I threw so many great things away because I keep screwing up.

I feel like I might have attachment issues, as well. I'm a serial relationship type...however, since the panic attacks are new, I felt like I had no choice but to break things off with him, and while I feel less anxious, I feel sickly depressed. He's an amazing person, but it almost felt like I wanted him until I had him...then my feelings vanished. Now I want him back, but maybe I just like the chase/want what I can't have? It's unbelievably frustrating because he's a wonderful person, everything I thought I ever wanted in a partner. I just can't make my mind up.

Deep down, I've felt like I haven't been fitting with that school for a while. I just wanted to prove against all odds that I could do it. I want to save my parents money and I'm trying not to let my current feelings corrupt my judgement (wanting to be close to this guy/my friends, familiarity, etc.) but I've invested so much there.

Any advice anyone can give me is seriously appreciated. I need to turn my life around...I just don't know how. :(
3 Responses
Avatar universal
First, are you a bisexual girl?  Or a bisexual guy?  Your profile says female, but you say above you had a relationship with a girl and then a guy.  I only ask because if your sexuality is different than the norm, is that a problem that hasn't been dealt with?  Or is there a typo in there somewhere.  I also wonder why you break relationships off because you're having emotional problems, given you say you've had them since you were 16 -- it seems you feel the other person makes things worse, which is the opposite of how I think most people feel when they're troubled -- they become more dependent on those closest to them for support.  At any rate, 16 was very young to go on medication, and I wonder if the OCD was really there -- that is way over-diagnosed and usually incorrectly diagnosed.  I also note how you refer to breakups causing depression instead of sadness -- it's always sad to lose a close relationship to death or breakup, but that's not depression -- depression is chronic.  Sadness goes away eventually.  This suggest therapy is still a very important thing for you -- you still need to figure out why you think this way about things and how not to.  Easier said than done, I've never succeeded at it, but I still do believe it's a necessary part of dealing with these things.  Anyway, given how early you were put on meds, it's going to be hard to get used to living without them -- your brain developed while you were on them.  They're devilishly hard to stop for anyone, but especially when used for so long and so young.  So expect that to be something to work on, not to do impulsively.  As for marijuana, it tends to intensity whatever we're feeling, good or bad, and when you're a depressed or anxious person it's probably not the best thing to do.  Nor is alcohol more than occasionally as it's a depressant.  I'm not saying you need to be completely abstinent, that depends on you and how you feel, but doing it regularly probably just works against what you're trying to achieve, which is a clear calm mind.  It just seems to me if you're doing well in school grade wise and only have a year left, why not finish?  At least it's something productive to do.  If you're messing up, then that's a different issue.  I guess this is a long answer, but you're very young and this would be hard no matter what your issues were, so I'd get back into therapy before doing anything else and let the psychologist help guide you in deciding what to do next with the meds and the moves you're contemplating.  Good luck.
Avatar universal
I just re-read this, and I didn't mean to say bisexuality was abnormal -- I just meant to ask if being different than most people might be a problem if this wasn't a typo.
Avatar universal
I am a bisexual girl, yes. The girl I refer to was the first I've been in a relationship with, and I've always been pretty comfortable with my sexuality but definitely depended on her an unhealthy amount. We spent so much time together, and she helped me through a lot...but she was also co-dependent and displayed unhealthy relationship behaviors. As far as the meds, I am still taking them but hate how they make me feel, like I'm in a fog. I'm not sure how much of this is due to the specific med or how my brain has developed on them. I'm going to start seeing a different therapist and hopefully get some answers. Thanks for your reply.
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