Low Mood, need advice

Is anyone struggling with low mood, most of the time I seem to be able to shake it off and carry on but at the moment and certainly during certain times of the month I'm struggling with what I can only describe as severe PMT. I've been living with Chronic Pain syndrome for the last 4years and only diagnosed last year, I have been on amitripyline for pain management and found it very effective up to now and my pain has decreased to a manageable stage.

I don't have many people I can talk to about my condition as due to it being an "invisible illness" I feel people have no sympathy or don't understand so I shut myself off from them. I just want to know other people feel the same and I'm not on my own.

23 Replies

  • You are definitely not on your own steph_jewel - this is the place where we can say how we feel and others really get it.

    I know that I look ok and people who don't know my story and my brokenness ( is that even a word??!!) wouldnt recognise just how tough the days are and let's not even mention the nights!

    I'm so pleased you have had good relief from your meds, long may that continue.

    There's generally someone around on here to have a 'chat' with.

    I think I can safely say that we all struggle with our mood, just on a physiological level high stress ( ie pain ) raises adrenaline levels and high adrenaline = low seratonin = low mood. So it's no surprise that many pain management docs put an anti depressant in the range of drugs we have to manage chronic pain.

    If you haven't come across Mindfulness I really recommend it as a way of managing the overwhelm that comes with pain and limitation and has a really calming effect on the brain and body. Lots on YouTube to listen to before you invest in any books or downloads.

    Hope you will find some support here.

    Take care


  • Thanks very much for your reply, it is helpful to know that I'm not on my own, I'm caught up with feeling fed up, angry but also guilt of how low I feel when I know tang others are suffering with illnesses worse than myself.

    I don't feel supported by my family at the moment and feel I have to keep justifying why I feel the way I do which makes me prefer not to tell them anything which again can make things worse.

  • Fed up and angry is pretty much par for the course - it's not great what we deal with. Just because someone else is worse off doesn't lessen your pain tho, it is all relative.

    There will always be those folk who judge by outward appearance and of course that's just ignorant - and not worth the energy to try and convince them otherwise. Best to use our energy to build strong bonds with those who do get it and support us.

    I'm so grateful to this forum 😏


  • Thank you very much

  • I too am really struggling at the moment and crying at the drop of a hat. I have fibro, osteoarthritis sero neg RD (being questioned at the mo) I went up to the local shops with other half today and while he went into each shop to get what we need I sat on a bench and before I knew it tears streaming down my face. Hubby came out of shop asking what was up? I dont know I just feel really low and watching people go about their business while Im sat there watching the world go by I suppose I started feeling sorry for myself. Upset about a life I once had with mobility and little pain. Also upset that for the last year I have been treated as having RD but Rheumy this week told me I dont have it as drugs not working! Hard enough coming to terms with these conditions but then being told I havent got it even though I still feel as I did a year ago has really mixed up my emotions.

  • Sounds familiar: chronic pain is one of life's severest challenges: it's only now that my pain has decreased somewhat that I'm able to feel more positive. Pain and depression feed off one another.

    One thing that I wish I'd known earlier: cutting out all junk food (especially bread) and making oneself go for a forty minute walk, every day, no matter how grim one's feeling, definitely works better than antidepressants. As the medication gradually gets out of the system (lots of fresh fruit and vegetables and only water to drink) life does steadily improve. Daily gentle exercise is very good for both mind and body. It takes a lot of determination but if you can establish a pattern for three weeks, you'll probably stick to it for life and feel so much happier!

  • Omg that is just how I feel too, you said it just how I would but could never put it in to words that made sense . We are always here for each other on this site so let's try and help each other some more.

  • Some people cannot walk 400 feet, let alone 30 minutes. It's a challenge when you used to be able to run 5 miles a day everyday. That's me. My back goes out and my legs won't cooperate with my back out. It happened really quick for me. The loss was practically overnight and what was I told? It's degenerative at an accelerated rate. I didn't know that it could happen like this but now I do. I've been to the best spine surgeon worldwide (Mayo Clinic) and they are offering little hope but can inject my SI joint to see if that will help it. I was told that I won't run again.. but my life is terrible without being able to walk suddenly. I have no stress outlet anymore. I've been looking at athletes that suddenly lost their ability to walk and they all seem to have an endless supply of money to get the best experimental treatments. I won't have that chance. My insurance will pay for only proven methods. If only..... so yes, I am low mood. Almost always since 2 months ago when this happened to me.

    I am on antidepressant or happy pills like Prozac.

    I have pain pills to sleep at night and they quit working.

    I had to quit working altogether and really need the money.

    I was kicked out of a physical therapy program to run 8 hours a day.

    It was a get back to work program. It was for dealing with pain.

    2 hours of work out in the morning and 2 hours of workout after

    lunch would have been perfect if I had the strength to do it.

    I am so unhappy with quality of life for myself. My back goes out 4 times

    a day and I am getting "sleep" pain relief with pills only. Lots of pills.

  • Some days are a lot better than otherwise, I have widespread chronic pain from bladder,migraines, back pain, sciatica, pelvic pain. So sometimes it may be manageable as its just a headache, or some days like today I could be fatigue and feel like staying in bed where I am comfy.

    I find it hard not to be able to plan social events with my friends as I can't always stick to plans I've made, I find it difficult not knowing what the next day is going to be or how bad the pain is going to be.

    Does anyone know of my good books to do with self help that people have found useful? x

  • Hi,

    You definitely aren't alone in feeling like this, and there are lots of people on this site who understand very well how you feel. Don't feel guilty about the way you feel. I work very hard to keep 'the show on the road' with my family and at work, but sometimes I just can't and the cracks show. We are only human and are coping with something really tough. I know that when my pain levels are high I just withdraw from people and hide inside myself, but that is probably not the best thing to do, as the people around me want to help if they can.

    The clinical health psychologist I saw recently at a pain clinic recommended 'coherent breathing' exercises to lift my mood. I was very sceptical at first, but have been doing them every day for several months now and I do feel better, more positive. Google 'coherent breathing'. There is a book and CD, 'The Healing Power of the Breath' which I found helpful, and at least breathing exercises won't have any nasty side effects like most medication. The advice about good food, fresh air and as much gentle exercise as you can manage is also good.

    Just remember to be kind to yourself, and talk to those around you (including here) who want to help you.

    Best wishes


  • Hi Steph, I understand completely how you feel. I have suffered from depression all my life and other mental health problems. Both cannot be seen! I have been told that pain and depression go together. I have always had psychiatric help and medication. I also worked as a therapist. I would suggest a visit to your GP who can refer you for some sort of help and please talk to people about how you feel. I do pop in now and again so will look out for your posts.

  • That's just crap how you feel. Ohh you poor bugger. I feel really "wrong" too. It is up and down for me - the people you feel should give a hoot don't, and the ones you never suspect do. Definitely go to your GP and see if they can help "with that time of the month". Steph jewel I fel like you always and I'm sure we are not alone...

  • Hello Steph,

    As lots of people have posted, you are not alone and many know how you are feeling. I found the low points were often triggered by feelings that your friends and family don't understand and so you withdraw even further which in turn makes you feel more isolated and alone with your pain and depression. It's a hard thing to resolve but I found that by letting off steam on this forum and feeling the empathy from others who really understand takes the edge off just enough to maybe find the strength to get through another day. I find that there are darker days than others and with all that we have to deal with it is only to be expected. Allow yourself these days when you do mourn for the person you used to be and the capabilities you had but know there is a way through this and a life that can be lived - just differently. Firstly you must talk to a professional and try to find a plan for you to cope. A long term plan is sometimes difficult to plan for so just look at finding a way through in smaller segments. I have had similar thoughts to you so I understand how hard it is and a resolution seems impossible but we have to learn to adapt in some way with the help of the support that can be gained on here and maybe the help of your healthcare professionals. We are all human and not made of steel so don't be too hard on yourself when you fall down. We have all known at one time or another how this feels and how hopeless you feel but there is a light a the end of the tunnel and that light is as individual as we are - as is the path we need to take to get there. I still have bad days but they always pass when I either express how I feel or ask for more help from my GP. I hope these aren't empty words for you and help just a little bit even if they only serve to let you know that you are not alone, your feelings are valid and understood and we are here in spirit if not in person for you.

    Love and best wishes.

    Tracy xxxx

  • Thanks for that Tracy it just feels like you have just read my mind and put it down on paper, seeing it written down has helped me to put things in some sort of order, I am on a real downer at the moment as I can no longer take anti inflammatories as the have damaged the lining of my stomach, to top it all my pain clinic has suspended all epidurals until further notice, budget cuts, I am now in so much pain I don't know which way to turn. Anyway your post has helped so thanks again

    Sheryl x

  • Hi Steph

    I read everyone's replies, I cannot add anything because I am part of all of the stupid stories (do not feel offended, it is just my getting so angry at the pain and being tired all the time!).

    Try to be thick skinned, see if you can find a gp that has your best interest at heart. Google gp's in your area and type 'fibromyalgia' next the gp, some time ago I got some really good results in finding info about gp's that care. It just was not where I lived!

    We are all there for you if you want to chat or cry.

    Love to all

  • Sorry Steph, you can type 'Chronic Pain' next to the gp.

  • I haven't posted on here for a while. I have chronic pain - mostly well-managed these days - and depression. Many things have contributed to the depression, not just the pain, but it makes life much harder.

    I have learnt that my body gets worn out easily and I have had to slow down. I am now learning how to get going again without making myself ill.

    I still have my wobbly moments, but things are getting better, something I would not have believed a few weeks ago. It is possible to feel better and get some space from the low moods, even just for a little bit of time.

    Best wishes.

  • Hi steph, you are not alone. I can relate to your feelings. Some family members just don't get it and aren't interested in being educated or involved. Be it guilt or ignorance or confirmation bias. Which is not believing in change or if it happens once it is always gonna happen, sad really. I don't judge people on their issues .if we did, no one would have friends. Lol. Try meditation , start slow with slow breathing and music, they are free right on you tube. Text me anytime, our medications have a lot to do with it too. I'm healing from major back surgery and the medications do affect your mood and the way you think. I analyze and think about each decision b4 I act, this helps a great deal . good luck


    Hi, I know how you feel only too well. I was a teacher with a great job, good friends and a good social life before this started in 2008. I relocated back to Scotland as it's where I'm from but my family aren't close at all.When I see them they'll as if I'm still in pain and when I say yes, they just look bemused, like they don't believe me: " surely the doctors would have fixed that by now"....... It's truly exhausting trying to educate people in my life so they understand the nature of chronic pain and flare-ups. Most people have good intentions but after a while you can see them thinking " oh, no, not again" because they've heard it enough. I stopped explaining when a friend seemed surprised that a long car journey could trigger a pain, I'd told her countless times that was the case. I'm not blaming them, it's hard /impossible for them to relate to something like this So, I have isolated myself more and more, to the point where I spend most of my time along. I take 2 prozac daily which has just been reduced from 3. i have been admitted to hospital on several occasions because the pain has become too much to bear and I do not feel I can carry on much longer as things are. I have a partner and even he is beyond frustrated with it because it's like a third person in our relationship that calls the shots. I want to turn it around but there are so many barriers I've encountered, the thought of giving up all together is all to frequently with me.

    At least we can share on here and hopefully lessen that despair for each other x


  • Sincere apologies if this triggers of upsets anyone, but I have been thinking long and hard about making an end of life choice because I find it intolerable and my quality of life is extremely poor. Is this anyone else has considered, even briefly?

    I hope I haven't crossed a line here, I'm just wondering how low the low moods really go with us x

  • Hi linda39

    Please believe me when I say that there is hope for you. I have felt like you on occasions throughout my life and have been 'saved'. I received help from my gp and am grateful to still be here. Antidepressants have been a godsend and talking about problems instead of hiding them has helped put perspectives on things. Please contact someone you trust to talk through these difficult times with you and be brutally honest as you can't move on unless you do. Low mood is the enemy of optimism but medication is available which does work. I expect you feel like no-one else gets you or that you feel too exhausted to explain to them. There are people who think the world of you and who would be lost without you. We ALL have someone who cares for us. Let them in, speak slowly, tell them about every aspect of your day from rising to bed, how you feel physically and emotionally, intimately and candidly. Non sufferers are not mind readers and cannot begin to comprehend what we go through. Its up to us to educate them. Love yourself. YOU ARE WORTH IT.

  • Thank you for that. Yes, you're spot on, I feel I'm constantly explaining and partner says I'm making excuses. I think I'll call one of my closest friends this afternoon, that always makes me feel better, she's 450 miles away so phone is the best way. Thanks for your kind and practical words, they are really welcome x

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