Lethargy and depression

Hi I'm new to the site. I'm trying to reach out and find support from others as I've realised that this is something I'm going to have to live with. Coming to terms with it is extremely difficult. I've suffered with depression since I was a teenager but decided against meds as my folks don't believe in all that and told me it was all in my head. Anyways after nearly having a breakdown after the birth of my firstborn I've been on and off meds different ones for 12years. My youngest is 2yrs old so I am worn out due to that. I've always struggled with sleep and energy. Some days I don't get out of bed. The guilt kills me. Anyways I'm in this rut, I'm tired all day long. I get up and take the kids to school (my 12 and 9 year old) get in the shower and then I'm done I feel shattered. Even if I go to get the food shopping or do a little bit I feel as though I need to lie down. I'm nearly 39 and feel like I'm 80. Anyone going through or experienced this? Thanks x


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18 Replies

  • Hi there Lynniewinnieminnie

    Welcome to our friendly Forum here on Action on Depression. Please do read the Community Guidelines on the right hand side of this page under pinned posts, thank you


  • Hi Lynnie

    Yes totally, my biggest thing at the moment.

    Some anti depressants can help with tiredness and lethargy.

    You could potentially try to a sleep hygiene clinic or at least read up on it a bit.

    Diet plays a big part, something that I struggle with.

    I do think that dealing with the illness itself can help as well, not sure what you are doing to address or keep on top of your depression, as lethargy is a common side effect.

    Also building up resilience through planned routine, nice and easy to start and push a bit every week.

    I do not have children, but a friend at work has a two year old and she is very tired so don't be be down on yourself, it sounds like a lot of effort to me.

    I have noticed since my breakdown I have got more energy as I have been recovering and have less crashes, but it has taken five months and a lot of effort.

    Wishing you well, Matt

  • Thanks Matt for reply! Some days I wish I could just give up. I try to walk when I can (weather is shocking at the min) I have a shoulder injury which stops me from doing yoga or Pilates. My diets not that bad. I'm trying to eat better and make more homemade healthy meals Thought about joining Slimming club recently. I'm so unorganised that I don't think I'll stick to it. I'm about 2stone over weight. How about you? You said you were struggling with your diet/eating the right foods? I mean what are the right foods? I read somewhere that bananas were good for depression and then I read somewhere else bananas make you gain weight! 🤔

  • Lynnie, since my breakdown I have been struggling with time and energy. To be honest I have struggled with this for a long time. When I get back from work I am shattered and can't be bothered to cook, which leads to takeaways.

    I did go to a slimming world meeting last week, not followed it yet but it seemed sound. I am 4 stone overweight and I do think if I could lose the weight I would have a bit more energy. What are the right foods? that is one of the reasons I joined slimming world, lots of advice without googling and getting too much info.

    Don't give up, I promise I won't.

    Laters, Matt

  • The SW Korma is a good one if you like takeaways I do put some ground almonds in that you have to syn but it tastes lush. Thing is with SW you have to be well prepared with all the meals. Prob best making a batch.

    I could do with rechargeable batteries! Sometimes it's like I've drank a couple of bottles of wine and I've got a hangover all day until about 4-5 I've cut the drink out in the week as I thought that was contributing to the weight problem. Since cutting back I put on 6lb which makes me feel even more down.

    Wishing you luck with your recovery and keep fighting It's a real battle Lynnie

  • Hi Lynnie do you sleep well overnight? You probably have quite set routines anyway having little ones but I've really struggled with sleep with both lack of and too much!! I have only in the last week tried to establish a strict sleep routine so my body knows it's time to go to bed and sleep and also been trying to wake up at the same time in preparation for going back to work and having to wake up. I have found this really helps but it may be something you're already doing. I have had days where I literally slept ALL day and still all night but I think trying to force through the exhaustion allthough incredibly difficult to do and requires extreme amounts of force (plus nudges from my husband) maybe your 12yr old could help here on a weekend day really is the only way to get through it, giving your body and brain a shock that it can't sleep now but can sleep after you have done your bedtime routine.

    Hope this can maybe be of some help (sorry for rambling on I'm new here and haven't learnt how to shorten what I want to say yet!!)

    L x

  • Thanks for reply. I don't sleep well at all. If I manage to fall asleep at a reasonable time I usually wake up at 3am ish I have no energy for my toddler. Your right I think in saying to get a routine going. I've never had a routine so that's going to be tough. I get bored and fed up really easily and never stick to anything. I'm trying to get my 2 yr old in a good routine which is proving impossible. My other son was also a nightmare until he started school. I have no support network at all And when I do get the chance to talk to someone I find myself moaning And fishing for sympathy. It's so hard to get out of the hole It's like someone's hanging onto you dragging you back down. It's tiring 😴

    It sounds like you have will power Good luck x

  • That must be tough. Maybe talk to your gp about something to help you sleep? I don't have the best will power just taking tiny steps. I've been on sleeping tablets for months now and want to try to come off them but really struggling (my husband is currently hiding them so I can only have 1 a night) so trust me it's not easy but I think it will be worth it if I get the routine in the end. Like you I've never had one before but trying to build one up. It must be so hard trying to bring up kids by yourself and I praise you for that and you should be proud of yourself for doing it with no support not feeling guilty for being exhausted, I don't have children but I think everyone knows 2yr olds aren't the easiest. Don't worry about trying to get sympathy we all need it at times and people will understand. Keep your chin up and think about the good you've done and like I said maybe speak up to the doctors! (I may sound like I have it all together but trust me I'm telling myself - and ignoring - these things too!)

    L x

  • Have you had a blood test recently ? Could be a thyroid problem, ask your GP for one. I had similar problems, no energy, unexplained weight gain and sleeping for the entire world. Had a thyroid test and my thyroid was kaput, now on thyroxine for life but feel so much better. One of the symptoms of an underactive thyroid is depression. Good luck.

  • Hiya,

    I've had all the blood tests under the sun and nothing It all comes back clear. The Gp thinks I'm nuts as I'm convinced there's something going on. I'm always in pain with my joints, hot flashes, my skin is itchy, I've suddenly got severe allergies, my hair is thinning and I'm constantly bloated So feel like utter crap.

    I'm glad you got to the bottom of your symptoms and the meds are helping you x

  • Just wanted to say hi. I feel for you as I had similar problems when my kids were younger. Cant really offer much advice but friendship and support if you want it .

  • Hi there, thanks for reply. It's so nice to talk to people in the same boat. I I know people on meds but they tend to keep things/feelings to themselves. I understand that because when I hear myself talking about how I'm feeling or what I feel like doing Id probably stay clear! Haha. X

  • Yes i know what you mean. The meds do block stuff out but somethimes too much. I feel like there is stuff I need to feel but cant because I am on meds. However I went down hill when I came off so cant risk it.

  • That's the thing now I've tried a couple of times to come off and I end up in such a mess. I'm borderline on what I'm on now which is quite scary because on my bad days I really do just want to give up. It's hard to think it's a battle for life now. I always thought it wasn't going to be forever. There's so many things to be happy about and things could be a lot worse But I find that just adds to the guilt of it all. Telling yourself you're stupid for feeling and acting that way. Sometimes I'm such a moody cow I'm surprised I've got any friends. It's like you have to fake it/put a face on. Although a few people have told me I don't hide my feelings very well and I always look miserable and stressed 😩 Do you have the odd day where you have loads of energy you don't know what to do with it? I haven't felt like that for a while but I've had days (about 3-4) out of the whole month where I have....weird. I hate it when the kids tell people Mums always sleeping or in bed. I haven't explained it to them that I have an illness because I don't want them to have that on their minds. I don't know whether that is right or wrong 🤔

  • I remember feeling really guilty when my kids were younger. I was always tired and quite often very low. I still feel guilty about it, and about the way it affected them when My relationship with their dad broke up, partly as a result of me being depressed. I wouldnt say i have high energy days, just days when I feel less depressed and anxious. My fatigue and depression are always much worse in Winter aswell. I dread waking up at the moment.

  • It sounds like you've beeN through a really tough time. Do you get much support from your Gp? The Winter months are the worst aren't they?! Perhaps we should be allowed to hibernate during Winter! X

  • Hiya Linnie

    Yes I know what you are going through, lots of hugs xxx

    I have 3.5 yr old twins. I too suffer with exhaustion, anxiety and depression. It's horrible. All consuming. I haven't had a night of full sleep in all that time. Some weeks are worse than others.

    What meds are you on? Do you see your Heath visitor and GP regularly?

    Do you have good friends that can help?

    I felt better once I accepted I needed help in taking medication.

    Please do not feel guilty. I know it is hard not to. You must allow yourself to feel exhausted and know it is a normal response from lack of sleep and being busy with your children.

    I hope you feel a little better soon xxx

  • Hiya,

    Twins!......I bet they're wonderful 😄 Hard work though I bet. Well done to you!

    Meds.....I started on fluoxetine for the first 3 yrs Came off then had a relapse Tried them again but then didn't work so went on Citralapram That didn't suit me at all. So ended up on sertraline for 6 years which was fine other than it caused problems in the bedroom as my sex drive was non existent ( but still managed to get pregnant with my third) Came off that during pregnancy because they carry higher health risks to the baby. After the birth went back on fluoxetine it's not great but just about coping. I get irritated very easily and can be short tempered, usually near the start of my monthlys Im worse. My anxiety is starting to come back. I nearly had to leave my shopping in Sainsbury's the other day and walk out. I'm scared it's going to get to the point where I can't leave the house on my own. I have a dislocated clavicle which restricts me in doing things like yoga. The surgery is too risky as it's normally a condition of a much older person and they say I'm too young.

    I've had a bad couple of days so I thought today would be better. Unfortunately my son woke up at 11pm last night and decided he wanted to watch Disney planes 3 times. He still got up at 7 this morning. I feel like packing my bag and running off!


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