Can depression cause these symptoms?

I will do my best to keep this brief.

I am 37, married for 15 years and have 3 wonderful children (14,12 and 11). 4 years ago I lost my grandmother suddenly, my brother 3 months later attacked me and my mother and sisters cut me out of their lives for not forgiving him. He has serious mental health issues and is very violent. He hurt my husband the year before infront of our children, hurt his own kids, other family members etc... I decided to cut him out and was resented and rejected by the whole family.

Anyway, that led to me becoming extremely anxious and agoraphobic. I went on Mirtazapine 15mg as i wasn't sleeping or eating. It helped me sleep (still does) and I eat really well. I am now a health weight for the first time my whole life. I used to be under 6 stone. In 2013 and 2014 I had therapy and overcame my anxiety and agoraphobia massively. Life was good again. Then in 2015 I started with fatigue in the late summer. My GP ran some tests, he said all were fine and put it down to depression and anxiety but I didn't feel depressed. By the November my son was terribly bullied and he became crippled with panic attacks in school and was suicidal. My world turned upside down and I became bed ridden with stress. My GP ran more tests and diagnosed depression and trauma. He said it was very traumatic what my son had been through and had led to depression. He said that the depression could have been slowly surfacing since the summer hence the fatigue but I didn't believe that as I felt well.

January last year I was diagnosed subclinical hypothyroid. My underactive thyroid became treatable by the May after 4 months of awful fatigue and weakness. I am now on thyroxine and my GP is increasing my dose accordingly.

I suffer with fatigue daily, I get energy crashes if I say overdo the housework, or even just a trip to the park or shops can land me in bed for 24 hours with awful fatigue and weakness. I feel tired all the time but some days I can function better than others. I worry alot and try to work out why I feel so fatigued and tired. Which just tires me more. I have brain fog and horrible unreality. On top my anxiety and agoraphobia returned this last year as I went out less and less due to the fatigue and weakness and I lost all confidence in myself incase I fainted when out or something. So quickly I became pretty housebound again. I take the children to school every day in the car but other than that little else right now as my fatigue has become a big issue again.

In November my fatigue lifted alot and I felt mentally much better, I was out walking my dog daily, shops 3 times a week, park on the weekend and no major energy crashes. I felt amazing but then last month my anxiety hit badly, I was terrified about CHristmas, scared incase I crashed energy wise and ruined it for my kids, worried as I knew my mother and sisters would demand to see my children.... every CHristmas and birthday I dread their contact as any contact from them causes me severe anxiety. So December was a month of severe anxiety, which has now calmed a lot but I have awful fatigue again, body weakness and I have an energy crash once a week again. I am devastated as I was feeling so much better. I always say if this fatigue would lift I'd feel less anxious and get out and do exposure work but since this awful December I am back struggling with fatigue, leg weakness and no umph.

It seems to all be related to the fatigue why I feel so low and anxious. I worry about my health all the time since this last year. I have an amazing little family and I laugh and joke wuith them every day but inside I am so critical. I have just had a virus, and am still shaking it off , I had a panic attack driving the kids to school last week and since have been afraid to drive until this virus eases incase it happens again. I have been crying and beating myself up every night to hubby, thinking I am less of a mother for having anxiety, for having fatigue and agoraphobia again. I don't feel suicidal or anything like that but I feel so guilty, I worry I won't recover from this agoraphobia this time and i will miss out on my kids future weddings etc... I overcame the agoraphobia after i was attacked but fear this time I won't because I feel it's worse due to my fatigue this time round. I don't even go to appointments my GP comes to my house to do bloods etc and I feel so ashamed he does that but he says he understands feelign so fatigued and weak has flared my anxiety up again so he doesn't mind.

I don't want a life like this and am spending my days fatigued, brain fogged, unreal and beating myself up thinking I am a terrible mother and wife for being like this, this last year. I know I have an underactive thyroid but can anyone relate to this?

Thank you.


54 Replies

  • Hello Jingyd35

    Welcome to our Forum, please do read our Community Guidelines on the right, under pinned posts, many thanks.


  • Hello Chloe

    Sorry have I gone against any rules? I posted on my phone so can't seem to see any pinned posts. I do apologise.

  • Hi Jingyd35. No you have done nothing against the rules. It's something we ask all new member to do as a matter of course. There should be pinned posts on the top right of the screen and you will find the Community Guidelines under there. If not then scroll down to the bottom of the screen and you will see them there as well.

    I would reply to your post properly but only popped in and am a little bit drunk (been out playing darts) and very tired. So will try and reply to you tomorrow. x

  • Thank you so much.


  • You are coping with terrible difficulties. No wonder you are anxious. I understand thyroid problems can cause low mood but depression makes me exhausted and makes me doubt every thought and not fully interact. You sound incredibly brave.

  • Can I ask how exhausted it makes you and does it make you feel weak in your legs at all? I describe it as fatigue. I am just totally and utterly drained mentally and physically. My eyes some days are heavy but it's usually brain fog so I can't think straight, leg weakness at times and just overall my body feels so sluggish and fatigued I feel I can't function. It's horrible.

    Thank you for saying I am brave. I try.


  • It makes my legs like lead. They ache and make it tough to get up stairs. The first medication I was on did not relieve that but the one that I am on now does.

  • My legs are so weak, I'm fatigued all over and have zero energy to do anything. It's awful.

  • Different meds have different side effects. My new Ines stop me sleeping and my hair is falling out but no dry mouth or chronic fatigue.

  • Hi Jingyd35

    I am soooo sorry to read of your illnesses plus ALL you have been thru. From one who suffers chronic depression I would say you have depression( I am not a medical person) your health issues along with depression probably cause the fatigue. Notice how you were doing well up till thinking about Christmas and all that went with that. Don't feel guilty about where you are "at" . Take very good care of yourself, rest regularly, have a healthy diet and be kind to yourself. Could your husband take you out for a few times to overcome your fears? Wishing you well.

  • Thank you for your reply.

    I am feeling like the worst mother right now. The one thing I could still do for my children, even all of last year with my fatigue and ill health I still took them to school. Then last week I started with this awful virus that hit the house, I'd taken care of my daughter for 2 weeks so rarely got out but the odd day I still drove my sons if the weather was bad (they're in high school so like to walk). The last week as the virus was hitting hard I drove my children and had an awful anxiety attack in the car, I hid it from them and just told my son I was dizzy due to the virus. I haven't drive my car since and feel the worst mother ever. My thoughts are that I won't ever drive again and I will become completely house bound. This isn't like me and my thoughts are so defeated and flat.

    I overcame the anxiety and agoraphobia 2 years ago after my family did what they did, but this last year when the ill health started and I am guessing a mild depression but since last month I haven't felt right at all. I knew I was highly anxious but as the anxiety subsided I still didn't feel right. I suddenly want to totally isolate myself, I don't want to have my mother in my house which I am told is a normal reaction as she has rejected me so much and not supported me through a tough time but I allowed her visits all of last year so the children could see her. It would make me anxious but not intense panic, now if I even imagine her walking in my house I feel panicky. I feel similar about any visitors but more so my mother and sister. I guess because of the resentment and pain they have caused.

    I just feel i am a terrible mother being like this. This last year the agoraphobia hit hard due to how weak I felt but it was worse than it was after the attack, it has stopped me doing any appointments (things I could do before as long as had hubby with me) now I can't do them at all, I can't attend school events or parents evenings, can't do shops or big days out. All due to how fatigued and anxious I feel, the fatigue makes me anxious as I feel weak. Last summer I still took the children on holiday an hour away, we had a nice caravan holiday and we do it every year the last few years and I love it. I had to pace myself but it was amazing and I had more energy than back at home. I had to rest at times but nothing stopped me w which surprised me. It's my happy place, away from here and the bad memories. I was still tired but nothing like at home. I even went to the pub one night for 2 hours and we did the quiz and played bingo, I sat daily watching my kids swim... I surprised myself at everything I could do despite 6 months of anxiety and ill health. Whether I could do it now is another thing haha! I went to my daughter Christmas concert in the church last month with ease but I crashed for 2 days after with weakness and fatigue.

    I still do my best, I try and not miss anything but I feel I am letting them down. Some days I am too weak and fatigued to cook so lately they have a takeaway once or twice a week, I feel guilty for that even though they think I am mother of the year haha! I have to leave some jobs for hubby to do at night and I cry i am doing that again.

    I am just devastated. Before November I was out walking my dog again, exposure work in shops and I mean huge shops again. I was able to go out and not have severe fatigue afterwards. Life was improving, then December hit and past memories of awful Christmas's as my family turned up 2 years on the trot Christmas Eve hurling abuse at me blaming me for my brothers suicidal state because he felt guilty for what he had done to me :-( So I fear Christmas, I fear seeing my mother and sisters, the fears what if my health relapsed and WHAM I had a huge panic attack at the beginning of December and my anxiety rocketed, the social anxiety did too and my health worsened. I felt weak every day in my legs, so weak I'd struggle to walk around the house, bad nausea, panic attacks, always crying.... I knew I was depressed and it seemed to hit from nowhere. During this time my thyroid obviously worsened and a blood test has shown that and now I am on an increase.

    I keep going, I work hard every day but right now with this virus hitting me hard and making my regular fatigue much worse I feel defeated. I did a depression test last night which is brave of me as I hate them. I scored 43, it was the Goldberg test. I have never ever scored that before. I will speak to my GP Friday and discuss this with him. I am seeing a therapist, I am doing my second session tomorrow. It's a lady I used to see so at least I don't have to dig up all the old trauma again.

    My hubby is great, he works long hours so we get little time together, weekends are busy with 3 kids so i am used to just coping with it by myself I guess which I admit is hard going. All of last year chronically unwell with fatigue and weakness I had to keep going,i never once asked him to take time off. I won't do that as I see it as a sign of weakness and I am used to coping alone but it does take its toll. He helps me get over my fears, in the summer i avoided driving as the kids were home for 6 weeks, September was a shock having to dot he drive daily again so for weeks beforehand he would come with me in the car and we would drive a little further each day until I got used to it. We plan on doing that again but I am so upset I am having to start over with it, I feel I am letting my children down. I fear I am less of a wife and mother being this way and I am in too bad a place to ever recover. I have admitted it's not just anxiety and agoraphobia I am dealing with, I have to accept it's depression to and my GP told me last year it was mild depression due to my ill health but I think it's more than that now and depression is a symptom of thyroid conditions.

    Thank you for being so kind and replying to me. Sorry I have waffled on.


  • Hi again Julie, you need to get rid of any guilt, ok. It is a negative emotion and you need all the positives, take baby steps, perhaps the doctor will recommend a mild anti depressant. Just take care of yourself, rest do a little work and rest again. What I find is good is to prepare dinner in the morning ready to just cook at night when I am exhausted. X

  • Thank you.

    That's my problem right now. I'm beating myself up all day because I can't drive the kids to school while I have this virus and I'm scared I won't again if I don't get strong again mentally to fight my anxiety. I'm so frustrated and I'm always so tired. Always thinking I'm a bad wife and mum and grieving my old self before the chronic fatigue and thyroid hit, before I had agoraphobia etc....

    Thank you for your kind reply.

    Julie x

  • Hi Julie and welcome to the Forum, reading your Post was a reason to see why you are anxious and tired, now the attack by your brother must have been horrific and traumatic, have you had any sort of Counselling or opportunity to talk that over? THat too might help you, also the fact that your family have tried to isolate you because you dont want contact with your brother is very very tough. I can understand why you don't want to around your brother especially as you have children and have to be protective of them, so try not to feel guilty about your decision. Now if your brother is Schizophrenic And is on his proper medication And stable then he probably won't be violent again, but that's an issue for another day.

    If your GP says your physical health is fine then it's stress , worry and Probably Depression that's sapping your energy, when I was quite Depressed I had no energy and I was working and the minute I came in from work I would have to go to be for an hour or two to give me energy to get some foood and do a few things, I was constantly tired and could have slept for Ireland and that feeling is awful. Now with the right medication my Depresison and tired feeling went completely, now I still can be a bit Depressed but the horrible fatigue has left me, so try and see that you too will be ok,

    Your family and you sound lovely but coping with kids and day to day can be tough even when your well. Try and do some distressing things, it does t matter what they are as different things work for different people. Go to the park with your kids and have a walk and a a laugh and that will be nice, I'm sure you don't have much time to relax being a Mum of three, but do try, a nice pamper session and a love,y bath can help, when I was Depressed I found hot perfumed baths very calming and also how about getting some of the Adult Colouring books and giving yourself a half an hour doing that. They work because you forget all your worries for a while which is good,

    Stick around this Forum as the people here are fantastic and very kind and caring and that will help as you can talk openly and get advice and help,

    Sorry this is so long but the main thing is to remember that you will get over this so try and relax and take things day be day, you are welcome to Private message me if you want to talk about anything I said. I could relate to so much of what you said especially about family fallouts which are very stressful .


  • Hello Hannah,

    Thank you for replying to me.

    Yes, I had therapy in 2013 and 2014 and it worked wonders. I have gone back to therapy last month, I am having my second session tomorrow. The therapist knows about my past trauma as we worked together for a couple of months last summer but I ended therapy as felt I probably didn't need it at the time and needed to focus on my health issues. Now we are back working together. She specialises in trauma, anxiety and depression so I am hopeful it will help me.

    So depression can cause awful fatigue and body weakness? I have brain fog where I just can't seem to focus or concentrate, unreality where my surroundings feel distant or floaty and unreal due to how fatigued and brain fogged I am, I feel tired in my eyes and head andn my whole body feels fatigued and on top I get some days where my legs are very weak. I thought it was due to the thyroid but with how this has returned after a very difficult month in December with anxiety returning about Christmas and fear of seeing family, I wonder if it's related to my mood and how much it's dipped.

    I am just devastated. Before November I was out walking my dog again, exposure work in shops and I mean huge shops again. I was able to go out and not have severe fatigue afterwards. Life was improving, then December hit and past memories of awful Christmas's as my family turned up 2 years on the trot Christmas Eve hurling abuse at me blaming me for my brothers suicidal state because he felt guilty for what he had done to me :-( So I fear Christmas, I fear seeing my mother and sisters, the fears what if my health relapsed and WHAM I had a huge panic attack at the beginning of December and my anxiety rocketed, the social anxiety did too and my health worsened. I felt weak every day in my legs, so weak I'd struggle to walk around the house, bad nausea, panic attacks, always crying.... I knew I was depressed and it seemed to hit from nowhere. During this time my thyroid obviously worsened and a blood test has shown that and now I am on an increase.

    My Gp is a bit of a nightmare, he is lovely and will do housecalls but he adds anxiety to me. He last year just kept blaming my fatigue on my 'mood' or viruses that I never had. He would never confirm it was thyroid related causing the fatigue. He saw me in the January, blamed mood and that was it. May he diagnosed the thyroid condition and we started thyroxine but that was only because I kept having private bloods to prove to him my thyroid was struggling. The NHS like your TSH to hit the magic 10 even though the range is 0.2-4.2. By the time mine hit 9.28 I felt so weak and I demanded he treated me, he agreed as I had been left long enough. I did improve slightly energy wise but like I said after last month the energy and fatigue issues are back. My GP called me Friday last week and said he wanted to run more tests, I asked why and he said because my level of fatigue going on for the last year wasn't normal. I said to him he had come to my house just 11 weeks ago and I let him take blood, 6 viles and he tested for almost everything he could think of. He told me he was doing the full MOT to make sure it was just the thyroid and chronic fatigue I was struggling with. He said if I don't improve on this thyroxine increase I have just started, then in 2 weeks he wants to run more bloods. My husband and friend cannot understand this because he only 11 weeks ago ran tests, i have print outs and all are fine. It's bizarre but it constantly causes more anxiety, I have a fear of blood tests but I have co operated and let him do so many. He has done 2 full MOT's in the last year, all fine and all they find is my thyroid is out of range yet he wants to keep finding another cause which causes me severe anxiety and my health anxiety has rocketed this last week since talking to him. My husband says I don't need anymore tests and he will speak to my GP himself as he has had enough of me being put through tests and my GP just not accepting the thyroid causes fatigue and so does anxiety and probably I am depressed.

    I have a wonderful husband, my children are amazing and we have stuck together the last 4 years and are closer than ever. I am so blessed to have them. I am just beating myself up, comparing myself to others mothers all the time. I hate myself for being agoraphobic again. I compare msyelf to the mums on my Facebook seeing them do mother and daughter/son days out and I can't do that. I hate it. I cry every day. The one thing I could do was drive my kids to school but since this pesky virus hit and I had the panic attack driving last week I am so upset I am setback and too afraid to drive again. I feel the worst mother and worry I won't ever get that back and it was the one thing I could still do for them. I had overcome it and was driving again with ease around my town and no anxiety doing the school run anymore. I am devastated and feel such a terrible mother for having agoraphobia again. I know this last 12 months with fatigue and weakness has caused it and it's so frustrating.

    So sorry this got long, thank you so much for your kindness, it means so much to me.

    Julie xxx

  • Hi you have an awful lot on with 3 children and it is very hard work. I agree with Hannah and wonder whether trauma is bringing on your symptoms? It sounds like you have never come to terms with your brothers attack on you. Maybe PTSD counselling would help?

    If I was you I would first of all never compare yourself with others as it's a mugs game. Your husband and children love you and that's enough.

    I would also cut yourself off entirely from your awful birth family. They can't insist on seeing the children - they don't have those rights. If you want your children to keep in touch with them then don't do it in your house. Arrange for them to pick them up or get your husband to take them to their house instead.

    I would also consider moving well away from the bad memories. Is this possible? Could you move a long way away from them? The other side of the country springs to mind. x

  • Thank you.

    I started seeing a trauma therapist last summer, I didn't see her for long when I stopped therapy as I needed a break. She diagnosed PTSD, something my GP didn't and he always just said I was anxious. I was a wreck for 2 years after the attack. I was having scary thoughts, nightmares, every noise in the house made me jump, I was terrified of feeling angry and I'd be terrified near my kids if they were naughty... I was terrified of ending up a violent monster like my brother. Yet PTSD was ignored. I even went to my GP saying I think I have PTSD, but nope they ignored it. Yet my recent GP said last January he thought my son being bullied and him being suicidal was traumatic. It was, it was awful as my son was crippled by panic attacks about school, the mental health team were useless and I was coping with it all by myself. It was hell. He said he thought I had PTSD and told me to try therapy. I refused as I'd done therapy after the attack and didn't want to bring it all back up but then I saw a therapist last summer and she said I had PTSD due to the attack but she said my whole childhood had been trauatmic and it was no wonder I was riddled with anxiety.

    I have been advised even by my therapist, my dad, my gran etc... to cut off my mother and siblings completely as I can't recover while I still have to have some contact. My sisters were just awful to me for 2 years after the attack, 1 inparticular. She would sent me abusive texts, threaten to make sure I never had a mother again if I didn't forgive my brother and at one point she was messaging my husband telling him I planned affairs and had cheated on him, all lies and she was trying to destroy my world. I went deeper and deeper into anxiety. I cut both sisters off in the summer of 2013, we had some slight contact on our childrens birthdays but summer 2013 my mother told me some truths. She said I deserved to know and apparently she had lashed out at my sisters for their nasty behaviour since my brother attacked me. She told me that if I was ever in a room with them they'd be behind my back rolling their eyes at me, they would sit on Facebook poking fun at how i looked and to my face they'd even run me down for putting on weight due to the anti depressant I had, had to take. I was so hurt and told them I wanted no further contact. Not even on birthdays. I still sent cards and gifts to my niece and nephews via my mum.

    I remained in contact with my mother for the sake of my kids, we only saw her once every 4-6 weeks. Just so the kids still saw her, the missed her terribly as she used to visit twice a month before the attack but afterwards she was very resentful towards me and limited her visits (her own choice). As my children don't have a grandmother on my husbands side I allowed my mum to still see them and I'd tolerate her here for them, even though I'd feel anxious and afterwards be in bed for a day or 2 anxious. I did it for them. I put my needs last as any mother does. Then in 2015 my sister got married, she invited me and I politely declined. A week after her wedding she contacted me saying she was so upset I wasn't there and that she wanted me and the children back in her life. She said she missed them. I told her straight I could not have her back in my life just for the childrens sakes, she had to change and want me, her sister. She couldn't bring herself to admit that. She also never apologised for what she did to me but stupidly I agreed to be civil as my children missed their cousins. This of course led to her inviting us to family days out with mum and all the grandchildren,, my brother would be there with his children and she never thought to be honest and warn me. I declined all the days out. She invited me to Christmas get togethers and I'd decline and holiday last summer. I said no to them all and my mother pulled me up saying 'your sister is trying and you are just not putting any effort in at all'. I told her straight 'it's because too much damage has been done and it's never what's in my best interests, it's always Julie will have to just see her brother and get over it'. She didn't want me back, she just wanted my mother happy again as my mother has depression which worsened after I cut my brother out of my life and then in time had to walk away from my sisters. My sister was doing it all for the wrong reasons. It's her 30th birthday in April and she messaged me last week inviting me. I told her I wouldn't be well enough to attend as I have a chronic illness and am taking this year very easy to recover. Her reply was 'well I want you there!!!!!!!!!!' I told her straight I had to take care of myself and I can't attend parties at night and also I couldn't be around the man who attacked me. She thinks I should be over it as it's been 4 years and many a time she has said that and tried to belittle that day. She wasn't there so she has no idea how awful it was. It was bad enough 4 undercover police officers dived on him and bundled him into the back of a van and took him to police custody an hour away and he was locked up all day, all without me pressing a single charge. He was psychotic.

    Sorry that got long winded, it's only the tip of the iceberg with them lol! but yes it's been difficult and my sister often gets intouch behind my back inviting my boys to sleep at her house. Last year she did it in October, I contacted her and told her in future to ask me or my hubby before mentioning it to my boys because if we then say no we are the bad guys. My son was upset I said no and he then accused me of not letting him see his cousins. My sister agreed to not do that again but last night she did again and my son lashed out at me saying he missed his cousins and he couldn't understand why he couldnt' go. My brother lives 1 street away from her and they are so close, he is always there. I and my husband do not want the children staying over. So this is why I just can't cut them out fully because my children resent me :-( If I said I cannot see my mum anymore or my sister, my sons would be so upset and resent me as they would miss their nan and cousins. They are fully aware of what happened to me with my brother, they witnessed him the year before attack their dad in a violent outburst so they are fully aware of my toxic family and their behviour but they are kids and they love their nan and cousins. I feel so torn and I have to keep putting myself through this turmoil year after year, dreading birthdays and CHristmas knowing my mother and sister will want to visit, it ruins it for me and sends my anxiety haywire every time. It's horrible. I feel I can't recover fully because of this.

    I wish we moved 4 years ago, I became so agoraphobic after the attack we didn't, but we wanted to. Now we can't, as our sons are very settled in high school, one about to start his GCSE's and the other about to go into year 9 and a little girl who starts high school in September. We sadly cannot move now. I so wish we could, my dream is once the kids are grown up we move into the country and never ever tell my family where I live. My escape is once a year we go to a caravan park an hour away, it's there I feel happy, well and at peace.

    Thank you for replying to me, I am so sorry this reply got so long.


  • Hi the fact you write such long replies is that all this has been bottled up for many years, but please never apologise. We are very good listeners so you talk all you need to. That's fine.

    Several things strike me:

    1. You need to go back to therapy for PTSD. Until you do all these thoughts and feeling will keep triggering you and you will never feel less anxious. I know it is very hard to dredge up pain from the past but you have 2 choices - you either deal with it, or you stay as you are. Hobsons choice?

    2. You can't continue to put everyone's feeling above your own. I know this is what women with children do, but you have needs too and without yours being met you cannot be the wife and mother you want and deserve to be. If you are happier then your family will be too.

    3. It would be a shame to disrupt your children's schooling but I think you will have to so you can get away. How does your husband feel about it? If he understands then do it. I am sure your children and husband would far rather you are happy and this must be your priority. Being so young they probably think they are to blame for your anxiety. This is a case of putting yourself first so you can put then first.

    That's my view anyway for what it's worth. x

  • Great advice. Thank you and I shall take it on board. I do need to put my needs first for once.

    Thank you.


  • Just to say I have depression and also chronic fatigue syndrome I had blood tests to rule everything else out then got that diagnosis of cfs

  • Do you think it's linked to your depression or a condition on its own?

    I've had loads of bloods done just 11 weeks ago. My thyroid is underactive, my go can't find anything else yet still wants to dig around for something else and won't diagnose cfs. Frustrating.

  • On its own i didn't feel this fatigued through most of my depression. Doctors can be loathe to diagnose. I didn't even use the words cfs and I got a nice doctor who did.

  • At least your doctor is showing an interest and taking you seriously. x

  • Hi Julie. I would for now deal with one thing at a time but thyroid dysfunction does cause depression, anxiety and in extreme cases psychosis. It sounds as if you may have some sort of post traumatic stress going on also most likely from the attack and the way you are still being treated by others within your family. All of these things put major pressure on you and stress is not good for anyone, let alone someone with a chronic illness. I was diagnosed with clinical depression, anxiety, sleep disorders and at one point I also self harmed and attempted suicide. I have been on every anti depressant going, sleeping pills and beta blockers for panic attacks... This lasted from my teens until my late 20s. It was only a lot later after more episodes of postnatal depression I realised there was something physical going on for me and I am hypo also but that explained why not many meds worked for me depression wise and eventually the only one that got my head above water to enable me to think more clearly was sertraline the last one I got to. I remained on that for 6 years. It's a long road getting well and there is no easy way out. I get days where it is literally one thing after another physically as you are having and it all becomes too much. Speak to your doctor because maybe more counselling and some other meds just to lift your mood a little will help. The thyroid disorder has been identified which is a major bonus so you can always go back to that and assess where you go from there when your head is in a better place. It can take years to get over post traumatic stress, I still get flash backs from my ex so take your time.

    Also I have a very complexed relationship with my mum and family and it sounds as if you are the emotional punch bag of the family as I am. My mum is really messed up and very narcissistic. It's very very tough to escape these cycles of abusive behaviours these people get you trapped into. I would consider cutting them off even if temporarily until you get a bit better. I have to do that, I keep them at arms length now but that chip chip chips away at your self worth also your entire life x

  • Thank you.

    I've just never had depression as such before. I've not felt right the last 2 months since a major anxiety month in December. I've never really bounced back and since then felt more physically fatigued. I'm not sure if related to that stress.

    I'm on a small dose of mirtazapine and have been for 3 years. It helped me a lot, I slept and could eat again. It helped me through a very hard time.

    I had therapy for a year in 2013. She wasn't a trauma therapist as back then I was told I just had anxiety. It helped me with the anxiety and agoraphobia. I saw a trauma therapist last summer and it was helpful but I felt i wanted to stop after 3 months as it was making me feel really low bringing up my traumas. I found it hard so needed a break. I've gone back to her and have my second session today via Skype.

    I think the last trauma, ongoing family turmoil, coming to terms with q chronic illness and it bringing up my agoraphobia again, it's all been too much and now since I've had this virus I've been home a lot more so feel I'm a terrible mother for being ill and struggling with agoraphobia. It's all been tpoorly much agoraphobia and having a gp that doesn't confirm it's all my thyroid makes my anxiety worse. He's always wanting to test something else and find another cause for my fatigue and weakness. So the anxiety keeps flaring up. It'd like and not ongoing turmoil in all directions.

    Thank you for your reply.

    Julie xxx

  • You are welcome. I know I think we have chatted to you on the thyroid forum actually so I understand about how your Gp puts you through loads of tests and you have a lot of anxiety around that. Many people would to be honest, so that is totally understandable. I've been through phases of being majorly depressed and then being really anxious and having acrophobia, also panick attacks so understand how horrible it is. Also phases where I dipped between the two (depression and anxiety) within a day and at one point they thought I was bi polar. You have that constant feeling of dread that won't go away with anxiety. You question everything and your head goes round and round. Take time for you but also maybe see your doctor when you feel ready and discuss the anxiety and the meds a bit more. It could be that the effects have worn off a little now x

  • Ps I agree about family. I'm keeping my distance. I'm on my civil with 1 sister but she's the one who behind my back contacts my boys asking them to stay at her house. My mum hasn't supported me at all. We had a heart to heart at Christmas which I didn't want to do but 4 years of her rejection came out. She admitted it all and took responsibility for her actions and no and she apologised for abandoning me etc.... but still said she would have to get 2 buses to visit me to give me support and can't or won't do that. She lives a 15 minutes drive away. I don't want her support now but that was her reason for not helping me out throughout my chronic illness. We talked, nothings changed and if anything it's made me realise I need space. It's my sons birthday in 2 weeks and she will want to visit. I feel anxious at the thought to be honest.

    Thank you

    Julie x

  • I think with family like this and your mum sounds a bit similar to mine you find yourself jumping through hoops for them and you never get any recognition for anything or get that acceptance or love you have always wanted. They don't accept your boundaries as you are not allowed to have any either. But they let you know the moment you dare say or do anything in defence and it's twisted back onto you again. They are all putting too much pressure on you and they need to back off and respect that. Sounds as if your sister calls a lot of the shots also. They pick you up then spit you out again if that makes sense. I only stay in contact with mine for the kids and I know how that is. It's never easy cutting them off completely. If my mum sees the kids often she goes telling other people I am putting on her, if she doesn't I am stopping her, you can't win. She also turns anything into lies and manipulates an entire circle of family around her, so they all dislike me and think I am the trouble maker. What I found really useful and therapeutic was reading books on narcissistic personality disorder. There are loads about mum daughter relationships on Amazon. Something dropped then and it all made sense in regards to the relationship I have with them. That may be something that helps you a little x

  • They do sound very similar.

    If you scroll above I replied to someone about my family issues. My sister is extremely nardsiscit. She controls my mother and my mum allows it. My sister warned me 3 years ago if i didn't forgive my brother she would make sure I never had a mother again. She won for sure. My mother abandoned me struggling with ptsd, anxiety and agoraphobia. I also became suicidal at one point . It was horrific. My mother has since rejected me but just turned up as and when she want to see the kids. I'm polite and nice to her but this last year everytime she leaves I end up bedridden for 2 days with severe body weakness and fatigue?? I never used to but this last year I do.

    My sister is nasty, she hurled abuse at me for 2 years after the attack. I cut her off and even didn't go to her wedding. She then wanted another start so I agreed to be just civil so the kids could see their grandmother and cousins. I regret it because since she goes behind my back messaging my kids inciting them places and when I say no they think I'm stopping them seeing their cousins.

    My famous are very toxic nasty people. They think it'd normal to be abusive and aggressive and the next day they're all friends again. I had that all my life but after my brother attacked me I walked away. I'd forgive him the year before for attacking my husband infront of our kids and then my mother threatened to cut me off if I didn't forgive him. I lived a life of that.

    Now I just feel I amight. Or able to fully walk able way because my children love their grandmother and miss their cousins. I rarely see my sister, the other doesn't speak to me but birthdays and Christmas fill me with severe anxiety. I can't ever fully recover because of this. I can't walk away and if I didn't have children I would but they'd resent me so much if I cut my mum and lasts sister off because then they'd lose everyone. They've lost all aunties, uncles and cousins and they cling onto this last few. They say they hate my sister as they are a little scared of her as she should and is aggresive at her kids even my other sisters kids shes verbally aggressive towards. But my children say they miss their cousins and nan. So I allow that contact so my children don't end up resenting me for losing all family.

    Sorry this got long and sorry for any typos. My phone is absolutely wild and changes so many words I type lol.

    Thanks for replying to me.

    Julie x

  • Sorry for the delay in reply. It sounds like an absolute nightmare situation. You have every right to cut anyone off who dares lay a finger on you. And it's hurtful for you for them to be expecting you do just talk to him. My mum used to be all nice to my ex who was abusive and she knew. I have told her about a family member who abused me as a kid and she wishes them happy Birthday and says hello to them. It all devalues you.I have an older brother who is also allowed to act however the hell he likes and get away with it. He attacked my husband also infront of my kids. Does your husband support you? Do you do things together and as a family? I know it's hard at the moment but maybe try and rebuild some focus on your family unit and try to block these negative people out. I am not saying completely as you explain the situation with your kids which I totally get mine are the same(especially my eldest daughter) but I mean mentally for you. They are irrelevant and your do deserve to be respected. These reactions are purely that natural reactions to a very toxic situation and you deserve some peace in your life. If I fall out with my mum I get everyone in the family and I mean everyone not speak to me, she makes sure of that. Last year my 5yr old son was very poorly with a virus, he got a perforated eardrum from an ear infection. He was put on antibiotics. He went to school for one day after being off for ages off and on and she wanted me to take him to a photo shoot with his cousins for my aunties Birthday(I have two aunties this was for my elderly aunty). She knew he was poorly and I phoned her and said I'd picked him up from school but he was still not well and it wouldn't be fair to walk from one end of town with him to the other in the pouring rain. He is also autistic so he takes ages to tell you if he isn't feeling well or he is in pain. My mum phoned her other sister my other aunty and told her I had cancelled for no reason. At the party for my elderly aunt I walked in and all the family, every single one were nasty with me and wouldn't speak. My son was throwing himself in pain on the floor and I said I am leaving it's not fair on him. My mum kicked off big time caused a scene so that I had to leave my two eldest there and my aunty dropped them off later. To this day they don't speak to me, they were nasty for months after. Some of them only know a half truth so the lot if them can do one haha. I have had miscarriages and my mum has laughed about it, gone telling strangers in shops that I go into. My husband hates her big time. I totally get the hold these people have over you and I get it's never easy x

  • I can relate totally. I am so sorry you have gone through that and your mother hasn't supported you.

    My dad is good and he cut my brother and sisters off after what they did to me. He was the only one who told them how disgusting their behaviour was. My gran also threw them out of her house when they visit her 3 months after I was attacked. My mum will say she 'wiped the floor with Jonathan' if you mention she hasn't supported me, she did tell him off for what he did to me but she hasn't supported me once in 4 years since it happened. She left me to rot at home agoraphobic and anxious and my sister convinced her I made up my mental health problems to get my mum to take my side??? awful things to say and so untrue so I cut the cord and let my mother go and have struggled on since but gone through good times until my health suffered last year.

    My husband is amazing, I adore him and I'd be lost without him. He will send me to bed to rest when he gets in from work, he does any jobs like the hoovering or mopping if I've not felt well enough to do them. I make sure his meals are cooked, clothes are clean and I do all the other jobs at home despite my health issues but he is great and after a long day in work he will still help me out. He is a brilliant dad to our children, I am so so lucky. Our children are 14, almost 13 and 11. They are amazing and so understanding I am unwell and they sadly are aware I was attacked and they saw their father attacked too. I had to walk away to protect them not just myself.

    My sister was sexually assualted on a night out about 7 years ago. I put this to my mother when she wanted to have a heart to heart at Christmas because she said she was hurt she arranged a big family Christmas at her house (she never has before) and I declined her invitation. I had already explained I wasn't well and had a tough year and just wanted our Christmas together, we always do and it's how we like it. I also explained I couldn't sit in a room having dinner with my brother as it would trigger me badly. She said 'oh he isn't like that now, he won't hurt you for goodness sake Julie'. She just doesnt get it. So I said 'ok, would you expect my sister to sit around the table and celebrate Christmas with a man who attacked and terrified her?' She said 'that's different'. I said 'how is that different mum, infact for me its worse because he is my family and I should have been able to trust him'. She then bowed her head and said I was right and she was wrong. I said to her 'I need to spend time with true family who haven't destroyed me mentally and physically and who love me for who I am, not who want me to just play happy families so you can have us all together at Chrsitmas. You aren't thinking what is best for me when you expect me to sit at a table with the siblings that destroyed my life'. It was the first time ever I had been honest with her. I haven't seen her since, we have spoke on the phone but no visits.

    Your family sound absolutely awful, I feel for you because I have been through it all.

    My mother and sisters tolerate me jsut to see my kids, they never want to see me, if they did and were these changed characters they promised last year then they'd have asked how I am. My youngest sister was so snubbed I came off Facebook that she cut me off completely. Bizarre, I came off it as I was unwell and didn't want to be on Facebook anymore seeing pictures of my brother that my other sister shared often. I had to completely remove myself from it. Not once have any of them asked how i am, knowing I have a chronic illness and have been very ill the last 12 months. They just want to see my children and that is why I have to remain civil. I am resented by them and that won't change. My mother hasn't helped me once through my ill health this last year or after I was attacked and do you know what I don't want it now. She said during our talk last month 'I know I haven't been there for you but you're too ill to drive to my house to pick me up and you can't expect me to get the bus, I'd have to get 2 buses to get to you, it would take me an hour'. She lives a 15 minute drive away. I said 'Mum, I don't expect anything'. She knows I have given up wanting her or needing her. This last year I have become a lot stronger and now if she turned up wanting to support me I'd turn her away. I have a wonderful husband and children, they're all i need.

    I just worry a lot that me having the thyroid issue, chronic fatigue, depression, anxiety and agoraphobia again and I guess bad social anxiety now on top as well, I feel I am a terrible mother and a let down and fear will I ever recover again? I got my life back 2 years ago, life was good then this chronic fatigue hit and the sheer weakness and fatigue had me at home a lot and I became a recluse and socially withdrawn. I guess it's no wonder i m depressed. I saw to hubby if this fatigue and weakness would lift I'd be out living life again but while it's here I am too afraid to do anything plus have zero energy to. It's horrible and I really don't think it's just the thyroid causing my fatigue, i am now thinking it is depression too.

    Thank you for being so kind to me. I am sorry you've gone through so much too, message me anytime xxx

  • I am sorry you are goi g through this Julie. I get the same pressure also to just ignore anyone who treats me like dirt and be nice to them for family events. I refuse to go now. There are many other things going on also. We have cousins that are treated like the hierarchy and we are insignificant. You do get to a point t where you stop trying to explain yourself and you literally give up. One thing that is apparent though, don't look to yourself and blame yourself it isn't you thats clear. I am glad you have a great husband to support you. That goes a very long way x

  • I agree. For the last 4 years I would force myself to attend parties and family events where my siblings would be present. I forced myself to my mothers wedding Christmas Eve 2013 when Iw as so ill with agoraphobia and anxiety. I was a wreck on the day and made myself ill forcing myself to go. I spent the day shaking, terrified seeing my brother. My mum and sisters insisted I walked up the aisle as I was a bridesmaid. I insisted my son walked beside me. At the reception I felt so sick I had to leave after 2 hours, I was an anxious wreck. My mother took me to one side and kind of rolled her eyes at me when i said I was ill and very anxious. She treated me like I had ruined her day for feeling so unwell with anxiety. She had no idea how hard it had been for me to attend. Last year I finally decided I wouldn't put myself through anything again for them. So at Christmas I refused to see my sisters and I refused to see my mother and sent my husband to visit with the gifts and he took my children too. I had realised I was putting myself through hell, jumping over oceans for people who wouldn't jump through a puddle to help me.

    Thank you for your kindness xxx

  • Exactly your mum should be proud that you did that for her not negative that you were rightfully anxious. As a parent you just don't get that at all either. When you have kids you realise how messed up their behaviours towards you are also. I was such a lonely isolated child and became anorexic at 9 and wanted to die. That isn't normal.

  • Oh i am so sorry Katie.

    At 19 I had severe panic disorder. I had a very hard childhood. My parents were always at eachothers throats and my mother had mental health issues she never got help for, as did my brother. I was the eldest and told to be a parent and bring up my younger siblings. when I moved out at 20 my mother resented me and made me feel terrible for leaving her. She ruined my wedding day too when I was 21. She forgets how much I have put up with and still forgiven her.

    I even said to her over Christmas that as a mother I cannot understand how she can abandon me. Yet she can't do enough for my siblings, none of them have a chronic illness yet she helps daily to pick their kids up, help in their homes etc... My mum finds my issues depressing, and my family have always been they only want you when the sun is shining type people. I said to my mother 'As a mother I know my children will always be my babies even when they are grey. Why have me to hurt me so much? I'd rather you never had me at all'. She cried. I have never ever been honest but for once I was. I crashed for 2 days after but at least I was honest lol!

    We won't ever be the mothers we had, because we would never want our children to ever feel like we do now.

    Sorry to have let all of this out. Thank you for listening.

    Julie x

  • Hey I am a true believer for me that what doesn't kill you makes you stronger. One thing is for sure we will never let our kids feel that alone and sad. I am not a perfect parent, nobody is but my kids can talk to me and they know they are loved. My parents were the same and divorced when I was 19. My mum used to throw us out on the streets for hours. I was brought up by friends parents. She just couldn't be bothered with us ever, we were annoying but I had a parallel existence to my two brothers. Either we were thrown out or she was never home, out shopping lol. My brothers did and still do get treated better. These kind of people enjoy playing people off against each other. My dad worked two jobs she turned everyone against him also and manipulated his own kids into disliking him. When they divorced I finally got on with my dad. He sadly suddenly died aged 54. Even when he died it was all about her. Focus on your husband and your kids because that's real love there. Deal with them as minimal as possible and try and put up an emotional defence wall. That's what works for me. The only people allowed past that wall are my kids and husband. If you ever want to chat inbox me x

  • Hello, I can relate to your situation.

    Last year I was good, especially in the summer. Then by November I had crashed again. Like you, my depression is related to fatigue/exhaustion, and I have 3.5 yr old twins.

    I have experienced what you have too, the agoraphobia and anxiety. The insidious nature of depression/anxiety.

    Do you see your GP regularly?

    Are you on medication for depression? It may be worth thinking about.

    I always get so tired with my depression, it's horrible.

    I hope you do feel a little better soon.

    Personally, I do think depression can cause the symptoms you are experiencing. An antidepressant may help to alleviate some of those.

    I have tried mirtazapine and found it gave me incredible foggy head in the morning and my body wouldn't do what I wanted. That particularly tablet made me very exhausted too, which added to my probs.

    I would see your GP.

    Much love ❤️

  • Thank you.

    I'm sorry to hear you've suffered too.

    Yes I see my gp a fair few times a year and we speak every 8 weeks on the phone to discuss thyroid blood results. I have an underactive thyroid they're trying to stabilise.

    My gp knows I have anxiety and agoraphobia again. He will visit my home or talk on the phone to help. Right now I've a virus so feel anxious more than usual so don't feel up to a visit. So I'm going to have a phone call Monday to discuss how I feel.

    I do think mirtazapine can make you tired and groggy but I was on it 2 years before my fatigue started so I'm guessing it's not because of the drug. My fatigue hit a year ago and that's when they discovered my thyroid was struggling. I had no major fatigue issues on mirtazapine prior to this. I was doing yoga, running, weight training... so had bags of energy. I'm taking 15mg so a low dose. It's obviously not helping anymore so will discuss this with my gp. It helps me sleep and eat and I do feel much calmer on it. It's calmed the post traumatic stress a lot. I was a wreck prior to mirt. My hubby couldn't leave me at home alone I was terrified. I've felt so much more relaxed since being on it. It calmed my anxiety and agoraphobia and therapy helped too. It all returned a year ago when this awful chronic fatigue hit. My son was also going through an awful time due to bad bullying and he was suicidal. I broke and I swear those 3 months over winter 2015 I had a breakdown. My gp diagnosed stress and depression and said he suspected I had ptsd from past trauma too. I was told to try therapy and increase my mirtazapine. I didn't as meds scared me. I have gone to trauma therapy. I had a break for a few months and I've recently gone back. I have session 2 this morning via Skype.

    I will see my gp. My problem is meds aren't great for me. I can't take any ssri meds after 2 bad reactions. The older meds effect my heart so I was left with just mirtazapine to try. It's helped a lot but maybe it needs increasing.

    Thanks again for your reply.

    Julie x

  • Hi Julie,

    I really hope you do feel better soon.

    You certainly have had an enormous level of stress.

    Your feelings are a valid reaction to a hell of a stressful situation. Your husband sounds great! My partner has been amazing support too.

    I wish your son all the best. And hope he feels better soon xxx

    Maybe increasing the mirtazapine would help. It's worth a try isn't it??

    Much love ❤️

  • Thank you Clazzy

    IT has been an awful 4 years and just when I was feeling better my health issues flared up last year. I've felt depressed ever since to be honest but wouldn't admit it.

    My son is well now, he is doing amazing. The bully is now afraid of him lol! My son is a gentle giant, 12 years old and 5ft 9 so this bully now won't dare speak to my son. I taught him how to cope with the panic attacks it was causing and he has even said without my advice he wouldn't have got through it. He rarely has panic attacks now, he has a great bunch of friends and is often out and about after school with them having sleepovers and trips out to the cinema etc.. he is doing amazing. I am so proud of him.

    I am going to speak to my GP, I have been on mirtazapine 3 years at 15mg. It helps me sleep and eat but yes maybe a little increase will help the depression. I shall ask my GP, see what he suggests, no doubt he will suggest it.

    I do feel bogged down with stress about my family who right now i don't want to see but I know with my sons birthday coming up I will have to. I have to see my mother whenever she asks to visit the children. Right now I feel I just want to shut the world out so I can recover. I can't have any added stress. My mother has hurt me a lot and hasn't been there for me so seeing her right now when I am struggling just causes me more pain. She doesn't understand it though. I spoke to her 2 days ago and she was telling me how she and my sister were going to see Swan Lake this week and having a mother and daughter day at a spa. She said how lovely my sister was doing that for her as seeing Swan Lake had always been something my mum had wanted to see. I agreed because I also always wanted to see Swan Lake, I was a ballerina for over 12 years and adored ballet.; My mother said one day we would go to see it together so it really hurt me her telling me how wonderful my sister was and last night my sister kept sending me photographs on Snapchat of them at the theatre. It just really hurt me, my husband told me my mother and sister are toxic and they know full well they're hurting you so not to have any contact. So yes on going family turmoil when all I want is to be left alone doesn't help but having 3 children that love their nan and miss their cousins I feel I have to remain civil.

    Having the chronic fatigue is horrible, it's why my anxiety and agoraphobia hit again. I do have a thyroid condition so maybe that causes a lot of my fatigue issues but i do think the depression is now causing a lot of it because in December I had a tough month, my anxiety hit worse than usual, all fears of Christmas and having to see my mother and sister. The whole month I was in a state and barely ate or slept, I lost weight and was constantly anxious. Since that month I have felt weak legged and fatigued all over, every single day. The anxiety has calmed yet I have been left with this weakness and fatigue which I am guessing is all down to the depression/anxiety.

    Thank you for your kind reply.


  • Julie, have you considered maybe going to a solicitor and setting up contact for your kids so you don't have to be there? I know it sounds extreme but it sounds as if you need to distance yourself but still want the kids to have contact. I am lucky in that my husband will drop them off at my mums then pick them up but then we always do find out she goes against our wishes as parents. There are agencies and centres that can help with this kind if thing. They could meet the kids somewhere neutral away from the home without you being there. I wish you the best of luck and I hope you get well it just sounds like a nightmare x

  • I am considering what you do with your husband dropping them off but my mum had the boys sleep over 2 years ago and had my brother over to see them, I now won't allow them to have the kids without me present.

    It's so difficult. Thanks for your help. It is a nightmare and why i can't move on fully and probably why I feel so unwell physically too.

    Julie x

  • Get her to agree before you do. That isn't to happen. My mum does this also and now I make it clear if she does I will cut ties completely. They are your kids(yours and your husbands) and you are not to blame for not wanting them around an abusive guy x

  • In their eyes they think I am OTT. They really do think after 4 years I should be over it. When I explain to her how awful that day was with my brother and have to relieve it to convince her, then explain how vile my sisters have been and how ill I am, she says 'well your brother had therapy, it wasn't his fault he was ill'. She thinks I should just get over it and forget it. So in their eyes he is fine and not a danger to my kids.

    My mother had the boys over and allowed my brother to visit. My sons text begging us to pick them up as they were afraid of him, so we raced there. When I turned up she invited me in but I said I was ok to wait outside as I saw my brother sat in her living room. She rolled her eyes at me and tutted. I told the boys to thank their nan for having them and off we went. She didn't speak to me for weeks. When she did speak to me she said 'the boys were fine with him, laughing and joking. I think you turn them against your brother and they're too scared to tell you that they like him'. My sons were so cross as they told us they jsut said hello and they text us to pick them up as they were afraid near him. They had seen him hit their dad so of course they were afraid. To this day she still rubs in my face saying my boys like my brother and brings up that day. She really does not care how I feel, none of them do and openly talk about him infront of me.

    I don't trust them as far as I could throw them and that's why when my sister wants the boys for a sleepover I refuse. I am always the bad guy though, I can't win.

    Julie xx

  • Julie -such a stressful thing.

    I don't get on with my mother very well.

    You do what you know is right in your heart for your sons and you!!!

    Take care x

  • This is how my mum is about my brother. He is admittedly very Ill and has paranoid schizophrenia but we have been through literally years of supporting him and I have supported my mum but he doesn't ever want help. He stops taking his meds and then gets ill again but becomes very scary, abusive and not safe to be around kids at all. People with this condition often do relapse but then eventually do accept things and get their acts together and take medication. He never does. I've got to the point where I can't have contact with him because of what he has done. He used to wait for my husband to go to work then come over and bully me and cause trouble. This is when he attacked my husband as he had enough and told him to stop. I am expected to forgive and forget everything but how can you when that person still doesn't accept help and still thinks acting this way is acceptable. I don't want my kids around someone who is very scary when ill but myself and my husband are made to feel so bad about that. Families are so complexed it's unreal! Haha x

  • Wow your brother sounds exactly like my brother. Thsts why happened here. He turned up to in his words 'beat me to a pulp' and my brother went outside to ask him to leave and he punched my husband infront of our children who were at thr loving room window. I had to ring the police and he pulled our front wall down and tried to brick the windows purchase your car. He came back that evening and my mother told me I had to let him in ands he wanted to apologise. Hubby refused but stupidly I let them in. He swore he would get help and he apologised traumatised kids. A year later he did it to me. I wish I never let him back in.

    He has mental health issues bur he lies during assessments and hides things. He used to abuse his kids, take overdoses and self harmed yet at a&e the moment they mentioned a psychological assessment he ran out. His gp knew he was hurting his kids and never involved social services. He's never had a full diagnosis yet he's been this way since childhood. He's got and way with hurting people and being aggressive because my mum and sisters always say he's ill and so he gets away with it. He's hurt you sister, punched mums windows in and doors. He attacked me. He still is mums golden boy and is to my sisters. Yet I'm the one they alienated it makes nosense but it's because I stood up to him and said I wasn't dping this anymore and walked away. They resent me but my brother has said he doesn't blame me for what I've done and he's full of guilt.

    After he attacked me he finally got help and went to therapy for 3 years. I'm told he's much better but still very depressed and the next very happy so my sister who's a mental health nurse thinks he's bipolar and they've suspected that a long time. He was diagnosed with depressing, anxiety and bpd after he attacked me. My mums always thought he has schizophrenia or bipolar as he had issues during his childhood achitattedelf harming and over doses but mum never got him help. He was aggressive back then at times trashing his bedroom. My parents let him down and I suspect it's why my mum won't have a bad said about him.

    You've done exactly the right thing walking away. our have to keep your little family safe and if your mum cant understand that then you're definitely doing the right thing putting yourself first. I'm glad you've a supportive husband too, it really does help doesn't it. It sounds like we've lived similar experiences.

    Big hugs xx

  • Well if he abuses his kids then that is a big red flag to anyone for a start. You cannot let anything like that go and it's unreasonable of them to expect you to. That along with attacking you, you are bound to have that stance. My brother was first diagnosed bi polar, then with psychosis and then schizophrenia. It does became clear eventually if its that as my brother talks to voices and also hallucinates. Whatever your brother has though it sounds so stressful and really nobody needs a diagnosis to know someone isn't safe to be around, you have learned from what he has done. My brother is not usually that violent or aggressive unless he is very ill and he has been unmediated now for almost 3 years so he will be just that. It's just too much of a stressful situation to deal with. You have to get to the point of survival really for yourself and your family. Yes keep talking to your husband because it sounds like he has your back and that is so important x

  • He was abusing his step son, his partner knew and allowed it. Social services found out they were leaving the kids alone when they went shopping, youngest was 1 and eldest 8. They also got wind he was abusing his step son. I won't say how but it was horrible and he told my sister what my brother was doing to him. When social services found out the police went to his school and questioned him. He made an excuse for his bruises and lied because he was afraid of losing another dad. Awful. My brother instead of guilt and shame he went aggressive and rang me instantly accusing me of calling them, I didn't but he harassed me for a year. A whole year of him, his partner and my sisters hurling abuse at me. They all knew he was doing it yet were just out to get whoever rang them. It was awful. My sisters knew what he was doing, as did his partners friend but somehow as usual I was the scapegoat and that's why in the end he chased me in my car and attacked me. During that year I lost my grandmother too, it was hell.

    My brother once punched his son, he was only a few months old. He said he had thoughts of what he would look like if he punched him and a thought telling him to do it to see. He did, his partner forgave him but that night my brother wanted to kill himself and ended up in A&E, I took him. He didn't speak and just sat there staring into space. They did nothing and gave him diazepam and sent him home. He said he wasn't hearing voices and was later told it was just an intrusive thought. I have had intrusive thoughts with high anxiety but nothing like that and you don't act on intrusives. So I think he had issues back then and it was the start of his severe breakdown. Again the children were not taken into care and doctors knew what he did.

    My brother also comes on and off his medication, he is so up and down but even though they say he isn't violent now i can't go back and nor can I forgive my family for what they did to me. Framing me and then bullying me for years after. Now they say they've changed and want us to be a family again, I can't go back to it and have moved on. I just now have the damage they have caused to overcome and i worry will I ever overcome it. My GP tells me I have anxiety and agoraphobia and with it some depression due to my situation. My fear has always been being like my brother but I know I'm nothing like him, it's just part of the trauma as even what he did to his kids traumatised me.

    Thank you for listening, I don't know why I have let all this out. Sorry. I appreciate you telling me about your experience, sometimes it helps when someone truly understands.

    Julie xx

  • No that is absolutely awful! Those poor kids and to me his partner is just as bad for not leaving him. I left my abusive ex as soon as he showed any signs of becoming abusive towards our daughter. She was a newborn at the time and I got out to protect her first and foremost. What an absolutely horrible man. He won't change and you are right to stay well clear. X

  • How awful Katie, good on you for leaving him protecting both you and your child.

    She knew it was going on and did nothing. My brothers ill health got worse during that relationship so my mother often says 'well i blame her, he wouldn't have attacked you if she hadn't have made his mental health worse', always covering for him looking for someone else to blame.

    He isn't well, I even saw on my mothers texts when my son was playing on her phone during a visit in the autumn, he was texting my mother saying he was depressed and didn't want to live anymore. They lie to me telling me he is fine when he clearly is not.

    Julie xx

  • Well I am on your side here and think many people would be. I have been suicidal myself in the past and wouldn't wish it on anyone but if he hurts others and children and doesn't help himself properly then you have to draw a line in the sand.

  • Thanks Katie. That means a lot xx

  • Hello. Just want to say. After reading your story. I love you. I understand so much . Been there. You are not alone. This is an attack that you are under. You must attack back. My suggestion is prayer. I am going to pray for you. Your family. Your body. Your mind. Your heart. The enemy here is trying to keep you focused on yourself and your symptoms. Dare yourself to find a charity or a cause. Or to even become an intercessor in prayer for others. As you focus your attention on others you will notice how your own symptoms start to disappear. You WILL be fine. Yup. It's not going to stay like this forever. One day it won't ever come back. Start thinking that way immediately. Cry out to Jesus. Tell Him what you need. And as you start asking others what their needs are and you pray for them. You'll see a change in your situation

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