The difficulty of depression and anxiety for me is the time it takes out of my living my "normal life" which is filled to the brim with dep

ressing things. I am fairly new here and have been reading posts for about a month. I sympathize with problems people are having with their Drs. GP's don't specialize with these problems and don't bother with them, as I find they aren't helpful. I started this journey nearly 30 years ago and have moved to two different continents over that time. I was born in the USA and so therefore my journey started there. I went to a renowned GP who told me that at first he thought I was " nutty " until he found out that I suffered from low blood sugar, which causes panic type attacks, and so I started to change my diet and felt better for a time. Unfortunately, things got worse again and I started having these attacks so often that I couldn't work. These attacks are strange, I start to feel as if the world isn't normal anymore, everyone looks strange and I can hear my voice but I can't control or don't feel in control of myself. I haven't ever made a fool of myself, just internally but I have to flee. This went on for years until I started to really have major depression too. These major attacks or episodes if you will began to get harder and harder to cope with. I had a very stressful childhood to put it mildly and so I felt as if it might be the cause. That said i also didn't want it to be on the other hand, it made me feel too weak to handle my life. I grew up in foster homes, 8 to be exact as my mother was an alcoholic and my father well self absorbed to be nice. I went through life as a people pleaser, make very one happy and you will be loved type idea, but well its 20 years down the track and it doesn't work anymore now than then. I have two different problems really my major depression which leaves me incapable and scared, and wanting to leave this place and my childhood, something I cannot even think about when I am majorly depressed , it doesn't change the depression it just makes it worse. I tried for years to deal with my childhood and I am now at a place were I can look at it more as a third person, it helps me to have more compassion for myself. Were are mostly more compassion to others, so learning to look at myself that way allowed me to forgive myself for not being perfect, and bucking up. No one taught me these things. Let me back up before I learned to do this I finally landed in hospital at the age of 30, unable to speak anymore, just sat and watched and cried, I couldn't eat, read watch T.V. I couldn't sleep, restless legs, I just was and I wanted to either get better, back to my less than easy life or go. I chose to try many drugs most of which didn't work and yes I became defeated and angry but at the end of this all I let the doctors give me ECT, electric shock therapy, sounded awful really and I was scared, but it sounded better than lithium and it was ECT or end for me. It worked, it pulled me back to life, supported by heavy meds I began to function again. I lost my short term memory but I made a joke of my forgetfulness and it didn't last that long. I had been so low I was just happy to be out of the hospital, where there are people who cannot be cured, they have psychological illness that don't respond to treatment. I understood I had been trying various things for about two years at that time. I lived in a world were Valium was stored in every purse, every cupboard, car etc etc. and I had piled up the bottles I was prescribed in-case that wouldn't give me anymore. I met my now ex husband around that time ans got married three years later, we had a child under doctors care, I was afraid to have a child, afraid I couldn't look after it should I relapse. It was hard going, I didn't always feel happy about being a mother and I felt guilty about it, childhood stuff, everything's my fault, and should I have a need or be unhappy I shouldn't be......blah blah on and on. I have come to realize that between my depression episodes and my childhood issues I have had very little peace. In fact my ex husband who married me knowing my condition had an affair and I threw him out. He moved away from our child very far, a 9 hours plane ride and I have been left to deal, something I can do even under the pressure because its all I know, surviving, and I can. It doesn't come without sleeplessness, anxiety and sadness. I unfortunately lapsed back to a major depression about two months ago, just when things were going better, I have found that's when it hits me when I have the chance to relax and things are better, and even now, it cripples me completely, I cannot cope without meds and a good doctor. I sometimes feel embarrassed and wish that I could control my moods when I am down, but I cannot. I acn do things to make myself better, get some exercise, eat well. But the dread of mornings the wish to be asleep and alone never goes away and the panic I get when I am in this state is amazing, it seems to be I have changed from a strong, surviving smart woman and mother into a person who cannot get out the house. This said I hate this disease I wouldn't wish it on anyone, its unexplainable to people who do not have it, and therefore, I only surround myself by understanding people, if a doctor put doesn't understand I do go back. I don't need the advice of doctors who don't understand and I don't need the insensitivity of people who don't understand, and basically its not their faults, they really don't understand. Further, many people do not have compassion and love in their hearts so they cannot begin to put themselves in my shoes. I only share these points when I feel someone will understand or benefit from my experiences. I don't have the answers but I do know that people with the disease have a hard road and I hope and wish the best for all of them thanks for the way I live in northern Germany now which isn't the best place for people with depression but they do have a great herb/vita men called Baldrian which can be bought in the chemist to help with anxiety and sleeplessness, it is something worth a try....although it only helps me when I am suffering from mild symptoms


9 Replies

  • Thank you for sharing your experiences.

    There is a lot of evidence now that ECT is actually one of the most effective treatments for severe depression.

    Glad that you have managed to cope but know that just coping isn't enough and really sorry that you can feel yourself slipping back into depression.

    Hope you have a good doctor.

  • Dear Gambit62,

    Thank you...I do have a good doctor. It took me years to find her but she has helped me so much. Perhaps I should say that by coping I mean also that I can have a happier life, free of severe depression. The second part of my life is full of things I need to deal with but I can deal if the major depression isn't looming over my head. I don't feel attached to this depression, it is just there and I cannot change it with therapy or taking walks. It is a major chemical imbalance in my brain. The childhood stuff doesn't leave when I am on meds, I have to cope with it and that is something that I have learned to do, and I am happier now than I have ever been. I believe that ECT does work and that a person with major depression always has the chance of sliding back. Life is difficult and stressful and these truths are when too big too much pull a person down again, depression is something that unfortunately doesn't just go away....I so wish it did. But in order to deal I had to accept that I had it and that was hard, because for me it means a loss of strength and will which are difficult issues for me....but I have over the years started to accept the truth for me and when I accept it it doesn't seem so big, or scary even if I get depressed, I know what to do, call the doctor and get back on meds....actually higher doses, I am always and will always be on a low dose for safety. This is the first really bad bad episode for 15 years, and it hit me hard but its back under control for now and I am going back up and I am happy about that. Coping to me means life is good as it can be and sometimes that means fantastic and sometimes that means its alright and because for my history that's enough to give me the base to live in peace...


  • SOS - your post reminded me of the following poem which was me trying to explain how I was feeling earlier this year. I'm glad that you manage to find periods of peace and I'm glad that the meds seem to be helping with your latest episode. Keep posting!


    I am not the darkness

    But it is a part of me

    The meaning

    Of the meaningless

    But still I cling to life

    The hope

    That time might heal

    The expectation

    That time will disappoint

    I am not the pain

    But it is a part of me

    It is easier to smile

    On the outside

    Dissemble the sadness

    Than fail to meet

    The hopes of others

    That they will succeed

    In making the darkness


    I am not the darkness

    But it is a part of me.

  • Gambit, that's a really lovely Poem

  • Hi Gambit, I hope you don't mind me writing again, I really loved your poem and your answer last time and well I am in the middle of the storm again. The pattern is now weekends when I am alone and I feel like I am falling down a tunnel of sadness, as I am so tired of feeling lonely, its not just that I don't have a man, its loneliness in my core and it hurts so much to feel so lonely inside because I have many friends who love me but I just feel so alone, I have no family except my son and he's 13. The darkness you spoke of is this part of me, and I have felt it since I was 5 years old. Part of it is the abandoned child with no parents and the other my illness, I got the double whammy. But I somehow never completely unfold and I think the truth is the heart of my loneliness is so painful that I am afraid of facing it. Thanks for reading ...

  • Loneliness isn't about whether there are lots of people around. More about whether or not it feels possible to make a connection with them. I sometimes find it quite difficult to be around people - at college I would describe it as being lonely but never able to be alone.

    It's really natural to feel afraid of the darkness and not want to embrace it but sometimes I think that fighting against it just makes it worse. And sometimes the darkness isn't nearly as bad as we think it is going to be.

    Will put some poems in another post.

  • Thank you, that really says it, and you write beautifully..sos

  • Its not abnormal for someone with parents with less that good skills. I had to and was sooo gratefull to meet a counsellor from america, who seem more gend up about things than us in uk.

    Work on the inner child..counsellor.a very good excellent in helping us learn, and feel, and cry. and understand.

    They symptoms you describe, of course is all part of it, disassoication (I cant spell either)

    memory loss. wanting to be alone, not wanting to be touched. deep dark moods, silence. panic attacks, part of the depression. hormone imbalances, learn breathing tecs,, breathin, and then blow hard, through the tiniest hole you can make in your lips,,, mine have gone now,,,take your time, till the panic goes. write down what sets it off. reading back you might find a pattern.

    Then read toxic parents by dr suesan forward.

    You will relate so much to these books.

    It wasnt their fault, they were taught to be parents, by their parents,,,,,, .This is the sickness and how it goes. good luck, x enjoy what days are good. x

  • Thanks for your post...