I have decided, at the moment, to suspend my studies and clinical placement. I am a psychologist and suffer from depression. For a few years I have been fairly well on medication but made the error of thinking I was ok and stopped taking it as I thought it was impairing my ability to function. Big mistake, two months after stopping my depression has sneaked up on me, it is like a black soup that comes up from my toes to my head. My brain is so fuddled with it that I can't think and what I do think are very black thoughts. I know that they are symptoms of depression but they seem so real. I am tired all the time, can't concentrate on anything, don't want to do anything - it is amazing I am writing this! The worse thing, for me, is the shame. Shame of not going to work, giving up my studies - even though I am really taking time out. The shame of not getting up and 'doing' things, being useful, productive, interested. Nothing distracts me and all I want to do is sleep so I don't have the stress of feeling like I do. I can't talk to my family, it just doesn't seem to happen, I start to feel vulnerable and exposed and judged even though I don't actually know what they really think. I compare myself to them and how hard they work and all the things they do and then, on a bad day when I can't get up at all, wonder how they manage to do so much when I don't seem to be able to do much at all.
I didn't know life could be like this. I have an appointment with my psychiatrist soon. Perhaps it seems worse because I have spent years working with people with lots of different mental health issues, maybe I expect myself to treat myself, but although knowledge is very helpful and can assist me getting through some days, it makes some of what I have learnt about treatment for depression seem so off-message, and not really hitting the point.
I also suspect that I think I judge myself as an incompetent psychologist as well as an incompetent human being because I have this illness and can't function effectively.
I am lonely too.