I am now 72 (almost) . Was diagnosed with depression at 35 and had many spells of depression up to age say 67. About 3 to 4 years ago ,through reading, I thought I most likely suffered from Bipolar 2 ,told my GP who referred me to a psychiatrist who confirmed this diagnosis and prescribed a mood stabiliser (depakote). Somewhat reluctantly , I felt, he allowed me to continue with the Venlafaxine and Mirtazapine anti depressants I was already taking. Depression is the main problem to me, normality is obviously OK and my mild hypomania (never been manic) when it occurs allows me to be more motivated,feel good and achieve more. I should add that there is little evidence that the great variety of ads I have taken over the 35 year period work very well if at all. They certainly don't work quickly although after 4-6 months I have usually come out of depression. Never been hospitalised and managed to hold down a quite demanding professional job (keeping my depressive spells secret --with great difficulty ) until retiring (at about 62 ).
Anyone out there of similar age with a similar history ? I'm asking because since taking a mood stabiliser I am spending much longer periods in depression and as a result its much harder to cope with life. I seem to have stabilised too low.
Is it my age ? Is this the pattern of long term depression ? Is it that since 65 my wife and I live separately ? She was always a loyal and good support to me and we remain friends.
I realise that having reached this stage of life I am lucky compared with many posting here who still have to cope with work , finances , children and life's problems but believe me it does n't feel like that. I had hoped that reaching retirement would ease pressures and life would be relatively wonderful. Does n't seem to have worked out that way.