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Depression?

Advice

I know advice wasn't asked for, and I'm no mental health professional. But having suffered from depression for many, many years and bouts of anxiety from time to time, I'm going to tell you some of the things I've learned.

Many years ago when my husband and I were having severe problems, I couldn't eat, could hardly function, and was consumed with the whole situation. My shrink said, "OK. Here's the deal. I want you to envision a huge ball just outside your door. It can be as big as the world. There's an entry door into that ball. You can go in that big ball door for 30 minutes a day. You can suffer, think about your situation, cry, whatever. But then, after a half hour, you have to come out.  And you can't think about the situation with your husband anymore that day."

It helped me. I was consumed with fear, anxiety, worry about the other woman, et al. Somehow or other, that helped me to realize that I could not live my life in a 24-hour day by thinking only about my problems.

I also recommend support groups. After my divorce, I went to one, and it was immensely helpful. Why it is  helpful to hear stories as bad  as or worse than yours, I can't explain. But it does let you know that others are suffering, many have the same story as you, and it just helps to talk about it and grieve. Eventually, you will improve.

Another helpful story was what was called an old Chinese proverb. All of the people of the village and surrounding countryside were told to bring all of their problems and deposit them in the town square. The people were very excited thinking about ridding themselves of their problems. But there was a catch. How many ever problems you left in the square, you had to pick up the same # of other people's problems. Naturally, most decided their problems weren't as bad as most of the others & chose to carry their own problems back home. As my ex used to say, "Everybody has their own sack of rocks to carry around."

I found it helpful to read "The Road Less Traveled" by Scott Peck. Something about his message was very helpful. Basically, he said that if you are suffering from a mental illness - like depression, anxiety, panic attacks, et al - that the symptoms will manifest in your body. He is a scientist and so believes that there is a reason for everything. There is a reason you are suffering so much grief and cannot let it go. Whether you are depressed and sleeping all the time, or having high blood pressure, or feeling nauseated, or suffering aches & pains, there is a reason. And once that reason is identified you can take action on what you have identified and start to work on it.

Another friend of mine says, "No matter where you go, there you are." You can't run away from your gfear, grief and pain. You have to face it.

I quoted this in another post about depression. Many years ago, my psychiatrist told me, "You can suffer from depression and live in a cave, or you can suffer from depression and walk around the lake." At the time it didn't make a lot of sense. I understand it a bit better now.

If we believe that there is a God in heaven and in the afterlife, there is comfort in that. It's not the same as having your loved one right there. But your parent made you the person you are. How do you think she/he would feel that you were suffering so much because of their loss? As a Mom yourself, would you want your children to become debilitated over their loss of you? How long would you like them to suffer?

There's a heck of a lot of stuff - most everything, in my opinion - that we don't have any control over. The only control we really have is over ourselves. And you have control over your attitude. You can choose to continue lamenting your loss and suffering, or you can choose to pick yourself up and work on your attitude toward your loss. Just think of all the wonderful times you had, the lessons your parents taught you, how grateful you must be for them passing on so much to you. Rejoice in your parents and be thankful that they were your parents and taught you so much.

Sorry if I got a little preachy. If you have a choice about your attitude, what do you choose? And you do have control over that.

Hoping you feel better and take action soon - Katie
1 Responses
792410 tn?1270319100
I would like to respond to your post but I'm not totally sure what group of people it is directed towards.  Are you advising depressed people who have lost their mothers to OvCa, or women with OvCa who are depressed because of their disease?
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