In a dark place right now: The last... - Anxiety and Depre...

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In a dark place right now

topaz1968 profile image

The last year has been a nightmare. Of course, the pandemic has been the stem of most of everything going on, but still other issues have arisen. I have always had anxiety, but now I seem to be suffering from depression but I also think I am depressed, because my 19-year old son is also depressed. He is in his 2nd year of college and even though it is only an hour away, he lives on campus. He goes back in a few weeks, but his first semester this year was horrible. He is in a room by himself, but not for safety. Most of his friends chose to live with each other and did not include him. Also, his roommate from last year chose to do this year remotely. He did not want to live with someone he did not know, so he chose to live alone. The seclusion was horrible because of the pandemic. He is suffering for a few reasons, but I mostly think it is because he has very low self esteem right now. He has friends, but not many at school. We are going to meet with a new therapist today because his former therapist is not practicing right now. He has been without a therapist for over a year. He is on medication for anxiety but after talking to his psychiatrist, he has not adjusted his meds, even though I think it is needed. His sadness has effected me deeply. Also, my mom is having medical issues and she is 2 hours away and we have not been able to see her due to Covid. My husband is basically non-existent in helping with any of this because he is extremely selfish and narrow minded when it comes to issues like this. I can go on because I have a lot more, but I just needed to vent. My sadness is overwhelming right now. This is the worst I have ever been and I am not sure where to go from here.

11 Replies

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topaz1968 hi, glad you reached out here. i noticed that your username is topaz... that is the birthstone for november. I am a thanksgiving baby... i thought it was cute. I relate to your post as well. this is what i have learned, we are the mother and naturally we feel the childs pain. i urge you to discuss with your son that you are there for him and you understand how new and kinda tuff it is for him in school this time. that everyone is experiencing new situations due to covid in 2020 that are not so pleasant. let him know that he can reach out to his friends online and phone. to also think of something new to learn in his free time to keep his mind busy. i feel for you too regarding your mom. i understand how hard it is to not see her. my mom has been in hospital and nursing home for the past 5 months and released tomorrow. keep in contact with your mom no matter what method it is you use, still talk to her. send her a letter. or flowers or anything that will let her know that you are thinking of her and that you love her. that she is not alone. be creative for both your son and mother on how to reach out and give them some tlc. those special little moments will last. hugs to you my friend. keep us posted how you are doing.

topaz1968 profile image
topaz1968 in reply to Sabio77

Thanks Sabio - yes, I am a November baby too :) It is so true about feeling our child's pain for sure. He is my only child, so of course, he is my world. It definitely helped to see the therapist yesterday. I do think it will help him to start talking to a professional again, even while he is at school. The good think about this stupid pandemic is that he can do everything virtually now and not have to worry about getting to a therapist's office every week. I definitely have tried to push him to reach out to friends more. He is starting to do that now. It's funny, because I was just getting ready to send my mom a care package. I will keep doing that and keep reaching out to her as well. I do help her every week with grocery shopping by ordering Instacart for her. But, the therapist said that now I am caretaker to 2 people - kind of like a sandwich. My mom and my son. I do plan on having some sessions with her by myself as well. Thanks again for reaching out.

Sabio77 profile image
Sabio77 in reply to topaz1968

you are a daughter, a mother, (and possible aunt and niece, sister). what is important is the self made things, time set together. i am glad that you are doing these things with mom and son. keep in mind, a schedule is important so you dont spread yourself too thin. you are valuable to both. your mother was your caretaker when you were young, so, its ok if you do a little reversal and do some caretaking for her. write a love not... simply I love you ... think of what you would like your son to give you, and think of what your mother likes. use your creative imagination. ideas are endless. have a blessed day my friend. keep me posted how things are going... hugs :)

Catsamaze profile image
CatsamazeADAA Volunteer

Hi Topaz. So difficult to handle what you are going through without, it seems, much help from anybody. Curious about whether you went through a very dark time when you were around your son’s age. If so your son’s experience is opening old wounds and eliciting feelings you might have thought were gone forever, all as you are doing everything you can to help him. If that isn’t the case this is still a major trauma for both of you. In my case, the terrifying emergence of severe depression at age 19 affected my immediate family so dramatically they all needed professional help to get through the experience. So glad your son is seeing a new therapist. You could use that kind of support too. The suffering of caregivers is often minimized or overlooked. But you have to help yourself in order to help him. Remember, you can vent here anytime...

topaz1968 profile image
topaz1968 in reply to Catsamaze

Hi Cats :) Honestly, I am not sure I ever had depression, but I was kind of a "crazy" teen :) My family was amazing, so I had a great support system, but I am the youngest and the only girl, so I think I just was very reckless. I was lucky that nothing serious ever happened. Seeing the therapist yesterday definitely helped and will hopefully be a step in the right direction. She seems very nice and my son liked her too, so we are trying to schedule a session for him this week. I do take on a lot myself and keep it inside, but I plan on having a few sessions with her as well. I don't usually like to talk to therapists, but I feel like I need to right now. Thanks for reaching out.

Catsamaze profile image
CatsamazeADAA Volunteer in reply to topaz1968

So happy that a) your son likes the new therapist! That is hugely important! and b) that, though difficult for you, you are talking with her as well. Those are very good signs!

Hello. I don't understand why your husband can't try to be there for your son in some ways so you wouldnt have to do a lot of the caregiving. Being a good father is more than just being a provider. I'd say try to do something nice for yourself too. Take a break from all the worry sometimes and go for a long walk or take a bubble bath, just don't overwhelm yourself with everything to do with your son. It's great that you care so much, but you don't need to burn yourself out.

I agree - my husband did not have a great family life or role model, so unfortunately, I think this is all he knows. It is a very different relationship than what I have with my son. It is hard not to have the support, and that is part of my depression I am sure. Honestly, I was always able to kind of handle everything because I was so busy and loved my job, but since the pandemic, I am teaching from home and I hate it. I don't like not being able to have that interaction with my students. I teach adults, so it is a different classroom atmosphere than teaching young ones. I just wish we could fast forward to when this is all over. It is really getting to me, but I will definitely try to do something for myself :) Thanks so much

Sending you a big hug and many prayers. College life can be difficult and is a big adjustment. Even though he is only an hour away send him encouraging notes and little care packages. I use to send little goodies to my son and anything I though would make him smile. Now he is out of college a good while and he still talks about those care packages.

Thanks so much - I will definitely keep sending notes and care packages. Luckily, he is good about talking every day either by text or phone or face time :)

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