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Managing depression without meds

(106 Posts)
katsh Wed 11-Sep-13 10:14:11

I had depression about 10 yrs ago and had fluoxatine which was great but side effects going on it were terrible. Recently hit with another bout of reactive depression. I've been to the GP and she's referred to a mental health team so hopefully I'll see someone soon for some talking therapy as that really helped last time. It's moderate to severe, but I don't want to go on meds as I can't face the side effects and feel I've enough to cope with at the moment. Am I being really ridiculous? Currently feeling exhausted, detached and sad, but managing basic functioning day to day. Your thoughts please?

Thanks Geek.
Hope everyone here is good today x

GeekInThePink Wed 02-Oct-13 18:34:54

Juggling I could read your lovely posts all day!

Mary is an excellent name smile

Absolutely working - is the work of a lifetime to understand and ponder.
I wouldn't be so sure though that your kid's grandchildren won't easily recall your name ... since having my DC I've become more and more interested in finding out about my family history and in the summer we stopped off at the church where my great-grandfather was the vicar at turn of last century. We found the grave of his mother so were able to show the DC where their great-grandmother grew up, brought up there by their great-great grandmother, and to see the grave of their great-great-great grandmother. She was called Mary smile
- most of it the maternal line as well, which I found particularly rewarding and poignant to retrace and remember.
Another thought ... you might particularly enjoy exploring the fleeting beauty and sadness expressed in Japanese poetry such as haiku. This feeling is part of the national consciousness and the whole country joins in each year with celebrating the arrival of the cherry blossom, with picnic parties held in parks beneath the glorious blossom.
The fleetingness of the pleasure of seeing the blossom adds to the poignancy of the experience

working9while5 Wed 02-Oct-13 11:10:23

Sometimes it all seems so normal to me and I can feel... whatever... without struggle and with acceptance. I can take the moments as they come. Other times... ah, it's hard not to follow the thoughts. Thing is the more I do and read about this the more I realize that this is it, this is part of life's rich tapestry and even the Buddhist masters with no pressures on them, free to just mosey about contemplating the nature of existence without the realities of life with kids etc have and live with these moments, weeks, months of darkness.

I think I got very caught up in the 'illness' story but it is just so common and so almost universal that even my own little quirks that tip it over diagnostically into something best off supported with meds doesn't really take from the broad brush strokes.

Mainly I am just struck by how random life is and the anxiety of uncertainty. There are just no real guarantees except that one way or it is likely that my kids' grandchildren won't easily recall my name. I know a lot of my suffering is that I want to squeeze and hold the moments and i end up forcing and grasping at them like the famous analogy of the toddler forcing open the buds of a flowers and frustrated she can't make them bloom.

This stuff is the work of the lifetime I think.

Thanks mildred, so glad it helped you x

youretoastmildred Wed 02-Oct-13 10:15:09

Lost a long post on "start where you are" yesterday - just wanted to check in to say it was exactly what I needed at that moment- holding that in my heart today

NC here - I was the french exclamation. Hello everyone, hope you are all well x

Ooh, I love Pema Chodron working, she seems so wise - is "when things fall apart" good ?
So far I've mainly read just the "pocket pema"

I like her phrase (and book ?)"Start where you are" - brilliant, because so often I'd prefer to start somewhere else grin

working9while5 Tue 01-Oct-13 08:49:53

I have a Lumie Arabica. I randomly stopped using it last week as MIL here so had no time and dear readers, be it placebo affect or otherwise, I feel like SHIT. Need to get back in the game. Mornings are killing.

I am lying here like a lump, needing to ring into work to say I have midwife appointment I forgot to tell them about. The stone in my chest is back. Did some depression assessments today and I am only experiencing mild symptoms but it is an early warning.

Fuck I hate this. Was reading Pema Chodron's when things fall apart last night and trying to lean into the heaviness, just let it be, open to it. Really though I just want it GONE.

nicename Mon 30-Sep-13 23:18:27

Just looked - it's a 'Lumie'!

nicename Mon 30-Sep-13 23:16:04

I got mine on amazon. Not sure if it works as I am up and down like a yoyo but sitting down with radio four and a cuppa for an hour or so, all alone, definately helps, and having the light on has the effect of an enforced sit down! My sister has one and swears by it.

I can't remember the make (Evolve or Evoke or summit) but it is about a 16 imches high and is the shape of a toblerone (but blue with a white 'face').

Glad you liked it Geek, hope it wasn't too preachy!

Just wanted to share the idea of being on a life/faith journey really, rather than feeling you've necessarily lost anything. Even if you have you might find something else!!

GeekInThePink Mon 30-Sep-13 22:37:59

Really interesting post thank you. Lots to think about there. I'm definitely intrigued juggling

nicename that is incredibly sensible advice. Do you know much about SAD lights? I think this could be really useful.

Dear Geek, sorry to hear you're having a shocker ....
I had some thoughts on a couple of things you said ...

You mentioned losing your faith and my faith has changed immeasurably from that of my teenage/early adult years when I enjoyed being part of a young evangelical church community. However increasing maturity and contact with those who believed other things and the challenge of suffering in the world, alongside to me the illogicality of some of the fundamental christian beliefs, challenged me to move on in my life/faith journey.

I wonder if you can begin to see your journey in those kind of terms rather than just feeling the loss of something you once held dear?
I came across the Quaker faith and community which has provided a good spiritual home to me as though valuing the christian tradition is extremely liberal, having no creed but testimonies instead ... that is we try to live out the testimonies of peace, truth and integrity, equality, and simplicity (and increasingly sustainability) in our lives.
But I'm not trying to convert you, honestly! well only a bit grin

Just that we have an expression to "follow the promptings of love and truth in your heart" - I think if you seek to do that you won't go far wrong, even if it does take you along unexpected new paths?

I wondered if I'm now an atheist, or perhaps a Quaker non-theist, but my dd tells me I'm a classic agnostic - one of life's fence sitters. In fact she says that if she is trying to remember what an agnostic is she thinks of me.
And I think she definitely has something there!
The view from up on this fence is pretty good in both directions, if somewhat uncomfortable at times!

Also you said simply that "DH doesn't help" I'm sorry to hear that and can sadly relate to that too sad Living with my DH is one of my challenges, though he certainly provides some support especially in parenting the DC.

nicename Sat 28-Sep-13 23:32:18

High protein diet
Eat regularly, eat enough and avoid junk food
Limit alcohol
Get proper nights sleep
Exercise/long walks
SAD light
Routine
Be kind to yourself
Avoid miserable people and seek out people who make you laugh
Get a stash of funny films and dvds/books for low periods
Recognise what sets you off and what helps when you feel low
Do mind gym type things - sudoku, crosswords, puzzles

GeekInThePink Sat 28-Sep-13 23:21:32

I'm debating councelling as I barely think about the things that are the problem without feeling sick yet alone say them out loud.

DH is not helping sad

GeekInThePink Sat 28-Sep-13 23:19:40

Having such a shocker of a day, week, month, year.
Lost my faith too tbh feeling very alone and the world seems a pretty crappy place at the moment.
On a lighter note my predictive text changed crappy to crispy!
If I thought the AD's would make this all go away I would take them.

GeekInThePink Fri 27-Sep-13 19:54:16

As am I Buffy sadly as am I.

I function, Geek from the outside I function perfectly well, you'd have no idea anything was amiss unless you knew me very well. Inside, is a ball of pure rage surrounded by a grey emotionless fog sad

GeekInThePink Fri 27-Sep-13 19:11:20

I understand Zut though I think I am perhaps slightly different as I'm quite comfortable feeling hungry, feeling full is something I struggle with.

I never realised or consciously thought about how much this depression really does take over my whole life, it's runs into every aspect.

I just can't imagine taking a pill and it going away. Does that really happen?

GeekInThePink Fri 27-Sep-13 19:10:33

I understand Zut though I think I am perhaps slightly different as I'm quite comfortable feeling hungry, feeling full is something I struggle with.

I never realised or consciously thought about how much this depression really does take over my whole life, it's runs into every aspect.

I just can't imagine taking a pill and it going away. Does that really happen?

GeekInThePink Fri 27-Sep-13 19:07:44

Buffy I completely understand that one.
I can envisage myself getting up and doing the jobs but I find it so so hard to do it.
If I'm having a good day...or have had caffeine I plough on and do a lot if jobs but 9/10 times I can barely load the dishwasher.

So, hello. Not a great day today.

It's left me wondering why we don't / can't do things that we know will make us feel 100 times better in the long run. Tidy up, for example. Declutter. Eat properly. Etc.

ZutAlorsDidier Thu 26-Sep-13 21:49:00

Sorry, Geek, I don't know. no point in reading the official stuff because it might happen anyway even if not listed. I put on weight very easily and it plunges me into despair so i know where you are coming from. And the bastard cocking drs treat it like a trivial issue, but I am so so so so tired of being both fat and hungry, I can't deal with being any fatter or any hungrier.

GeekInThePink Thu 26-Sep-13 20:57:46

Are there any side effects to St. John's Wort? Weight gain? I have food issues which to be honest is one of the main reasons I couldn't have anti depressants. I'm at an ok weight for me and I can easily maintain it. Anything more and I go further down hill.

ZutAlorsDidier Thu 26-Sep-13 20:51:33

Hi Juggling. Yes I think I know what you mean. Not optional enough sometimes.... as if I would love to not do them, but I can't pull out now...

Not having a good evening tonight. Very tearful, still lots of aches and pains, still worrying about how much weight I am putting on. I try to say comforting things to myself and then I get all fally-aparty as if someone else has said them to me: things like "you're doing ok" and "don't worry" are devastating to me. I do want someone else to say those things but if they did I would bawl for ever.
I am so tired of being defective. it is like being poor, and then getting into debt; the defectiveness causes you to fall behind in the first place, and then the defectiveness makes it harder to catch up, like starting every day with a backlog

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