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Finding discipline to battle depression and anxiety
icecreamcoan posted:
I am a 46 year old mother of two, and have been struggling with depression and anxiety since age 30. I the past three years, I went from very controlled an medication, Paxil, then Effexor, to a roller coaster of episodes that last 2-3 weeks and come anywhere from every 3-4 months to this past one which came back after only 10 days of feeling better. I separated from my husband two years ago after nearly 19 years of marriage, and my mother died in March from cancer. I know this is affecting me, although during "up" periods it seems like I am managing OK. My issue is that once I feel better, I assume the medication is working and go back to my regular lifestyle. Now it is clear that this is a chronic illness and I will need to fight it with more than meds and therapy. But I can't get myself to do it. I start things and then quit when it becomes a nuisance or doesn't fit into my life. I flip out when I think of having to move from my house and get a full time job, and since I am fortunate, I don't have to. But I want to. I am quite privileged, and often feel guilty even complaining of being depressed. I feel like I am making excuses just so I don't have to do hard things. Does anyone have advice about how to get myself to stick to a lifestyle that will help me? Sad to say that often I think that if I didn't know it would destroy my children and family, I would kill myself. It is so horrible when I have so much to be thankful for. I feel so weak and selfish. I want to try harder but I never do. Has anyone out there managed to add something to their life that STICKS. Or am I just a whiny, overindulged person without willingness to work hard because I never had much hardship in my life?
slindman responded:
Yes it is chronic and you need to work on it whether up or down. When you are up you practice your skills so that you can use them as second nature when you are down. Meds will do half the work, you need to do the rest. Are you actively seeing your therapist and psychiatrist? Are you fully open to them about all feelings, even everything said here? Your doctors are your best friends going through this. Changes will happen. I have been diagnosed for over ten years now and many med changes, it is going to happen. Meds can stop working. So sticking with appointments is important. I don't know much about you so not sure what to say. Do you have supportive people around you that truly understand depression and people you can go to? Take time, breathe, relax, and enjoy.
jaljewel responded:
Don't feel guilty. I am also a single mom (of 4) who lost my mom about 6 months ago very suddenly to cancer. I am so overwhelmed by so much to do that I think it is too hard to keep getting help for me. Do you have friends or family? It is sad to say that I don't really have friends. I have very little family and I avoid them because they do nothing but criticize and put me down. My life looks great to the outsiders, but nobody understands how I struggle just to get through the day. I am too tired to keep trying to get better. I have to believe that things will get better and this is just a stage. Maybe for you too.

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