Mumsnet has not checked the qualifications of anyone posting here. If you need help urgently, see our mental health web guide which can point you to expert advice.

Really struggling

(37 Posts)
Katkins1 Tue 12-Aug-14 22:23:23

Hello

I'm on the 'village' thread, but didn't want to bother anyone on there.
I'm really struggling, had a two month long psychotic episode, where I had home treatment and I'm now at outpatients with a CPN. I'm a lone parent- no family support, limited friends because I keep cancelling on them because I can't face going out. My DD was just away from me for 2 months, she stayed with friends. I feel so guilty and as though I'm such a bad Mum. I can't afford anything, am in lots of debt (on benefits- just graduated but can't work at the moment). I think I have depression now- need to sleep all of the time, absolutely exhausted (and I look it when I look in the mirror), think about death all of the time, and if I died no-one would find me for days except my DD. I wouldn't do anything to myself- but the thoughts are there. I'm in loads of debt and think every knock at the door is the baliffs (silly, I know as it's sort out able and most likely fairly easily), my alcholic ex wants to take me to court for access to DD (i stopped him seeing her because of his drinking). The court date is September 4th.

I look in the mirror and hate what I see, hate what I've done to my DD, hate that I can barely wake up in the mornings, that I've screwed my life up trying so hard to get my degree (I got a first, had psychosis and depression in the last 6 months of it), my house is a tip because I started redecorating before I got unwell, I've got something like grandular fever and my DD is lovely and so well behaved but has played up constantly today and worn me out.

I'm on 100mg setraline and 80mg of propanol (as needed) for anxiety, but my whole body aches (I've had this for ages, just everything aching...especially my arms and legs, I think it's to do with depression). I'm just about keeping going, but I'm not sure how much more I can take. Don't know why I'm posting, just needing company I guess.

Here to hold your hand, thanks so sorry you are going through this.

Step by step: you say debts are something you can sort out. Can you work out a manageable plan? It is easy to feel totally swamped by everything on our plates, but eliminating things - or at least focusing one by one - helps more than it would seem.

It's been a while since your post, how are you feeling now? Hope you are getting a good nights rest. brew

temporaryusername Wed 13-Aug-14 00:51:57

You're right that working to the point of damaging your health isn't worth it, but what's done is done so let's focus on the fact you got that first! Congratulations, and maybe you would have got it anyway, or would have got stressed anyway no matter what amount of work you did. That result is in the bank and it is going to be there to help you in the future.

I'm really sorry you're feeling so poorly - it could be linked to depression or it could be something physical, but it is bound to make everything feel more overwhelming. It sounds like you need a bit of support in balancing looking after your daughter and recovering yourself, I know that is hard to come by. Is there a home start or anything in your area, or could your CPN help you work out if you can access any help?

You haven't messed things up. Your little girl is still there. You are still there. You aced your degree! You will feel better physically. The future could be really good. I know saying that doesn't ease the pain now, but remember it is pain now and any minute things could start to improve. None of what has happened is your fault, please don't say you hate yourself. If one of us who also has MH issues said that, you know you would tell us - rightly - not to.

It is completely understandable you can't keep the house in the best way right now, and it isn't your fault you got ill in the middle of redecorating. That will come right in time.

Katkins1 Wed 13-Aug-14 01:10:11

I think it was linked to past trauma and a death in the family, on top of being a Single Mum doing a degree, really. The GP said to wait and see with the physical pain, it could be linked to my depression, and as I'm not well yet, they won't investigate any of that yet.

We have the social worker coming in the morning, but I'm worried if I admit how I've been feeling, then my dd will be put in care as there's no one else to look after her right now. I'm not doing an awful job, just maybe, not a very good one, I don't know.

temporaryusername Wed 13-Aug-14 01:43:23

I'd guess you're doing a better job than you think. It is early days really by the sounds of it, getting stabilised again. So all you need to do is keep her safe and well and keep things ticking over. You don't need to be superwoman. I don't know anything about social workers or care, sorry. My instinct would be not to fake it or lie, but not to be hard on yourself either. Ring your CPN and talk to her anyway.

I don't the GP can put off any physical investigations until some indefinite future time when you're mentally well. They could at least check if your glands are up, run some blood tests etc. I do think it could be tension and exhaustion though, understandably. I wish someone could help you out with DD so you could have one day a week in bed! Ideally several days brew.

Katkins1 Wed 13-Aug-14 14:03:05

Thank you. It is early yes. The social worker came out today, then said if she gets time she will come out tommorow when my cpn does too. I'm a bit worried about that, think it's just meant to be good practice, but is scary. I've not had much sleep today, and finding all of the reports on Robin Williams and people talking about depression online quite triggering. I didn't tell the social worker much of what was going on, hopefully I can tell the cpn, but I'd rather the worker wasn't there as I tend to bluff a bit because I'm scared dd will be taken away.

temporaryusername Wed 13-Aug-14 20:39:48

Yes, I can understand wanting to have at least some time with the CPN alone. Could you ring her and let her know you'd like some time with her at the beginning or end? She might already be thinking herself anyway.

I think it is really important to feel you can be honest with the CPN as you need her to be able to give you the right care. Hopefully the social worker will not be there all the time. They probably are just trying to help you, not thinking of taking your dd away. I really think they'll want to support you to keep her with you at home. It is ok to tell them what things might help you with doing that, I think.

Sorry the news is triggering for you today, and no doubt many of the people talking online are talking nonsense. Unfortunately this will make all kinds of people who know nothing about MH issues start commenting, but we don't have to read it. Could you put a film or something on to try and distract from it, or something very boring that might help you to get some sleep. I sometimes find I can sleep listening to something that is just distracting enough to ease my own thoughts a little, but boring enough not to keep me awake. I know you have to get to a certain point of wellbeing for that to work though.

How old is your dd?

Katkins1 Wed 13-Aug-14 20:48:30

My DD is 6, nearly 7. The social worker was checking I was feeding her right (or at least, getting up and giving her breakfast and things) today because when I was unwell, I forgot.

I keep cancelling and re-arranging going out with friends because it's too much, and I can only really put my energy into one place with DD- she has only been home a week so far. I feel as though I'm just a horrendous Mother who needs to be 'watched' all of the time, to check I am doing even the basic things. I keep feeling too hot because of the anxiety, too. I have so many depressive thoughts, and feel, I don't know 'funny'. I don't want them to take DD away, but what if it's best for her to be looked after properly, to be taken out every day and do lots of activities (like my friends did with her) instead of being stuck here with me? I feel like such a failure of a Mother. Absolute total failure. I really do feel as though I can't cope, and the social worker is trying to catch me out.

temporaryusername Wed 13-Aug-14 21:14:32

I bet she is gorgeous, and I know one thing for sure - when I was that age I would much rather have been 'stuck' at home with my mum, even if she was unwell, than live with other people. Being with her would have been better for me than doing lots of activities, and I know some children that age well who I am sure would be the same. Not that I think it is disastrous if she stays with other people sometimes, just that you might be underestimating how much it means to her to be with you even if she isn't going out all the time.

Even if you do have to be supervised, you are not horrendous, or a failure, or any blame filled word. If someone couldn't get their children food or take them out because they had a period of physical illness or an injury, no-one would use those terms - and this is the same. They would need support to help them look after their children. Obviously it is important that you do the basic things, but that is why they are keeping an eye on you. You seem like at the moment you would know if you weren't doing the basics, do you think?

Do you think any of your friends would be understanding if you told them that you just don't feel up to doing things right now, although in theory you'd like to. Maybe they could take your dd out for a bit or have a sleepover to give you a break?

Katkins1 Wed 13-Aug-14 21:23:43

She wanted to make loom bands today, even when I suggested the park, so I let her. I know if I'm doing the basic things, yes. She has 3 meals a day and fruit and other things. Today was cereal, cheese sandwich and yoghurt then pizza and beans with carrot cake after (naughty there) and fruit for snacks. All fairly normal, I'm just not sure that I'm doing it right, if you see what I mean. I think I've lost my confidence, but she's dressed every mornin g, hair up and brushed teeth, bath every night, has things she needs. I just really really worry that it's not hood enough. I do explain to my friends, they are all understanding and flexible, as am I all of the time, just the way grown ups are in that respect! Most people have been very kind, but it doesn't stop the thoughts.

temporaryusername Wed 13-Aug-14 21:31:12

I think it sounds like you are doing really well. Carrot cake is one of our five a day isn't it?

SilverStars Wed 13-Aug-14 21:35:21

Hi will social care give you a support worker for a few weeks to help you? Ad those friends who had her maybe give some support.

I find meeting up with people with other kids helpful and perhaps you can try just one visit with people, and see how it goes. Rather than try several.

Have you got a free bus pass? You can ask the CPN. It may help get out and about, of needing transport.

Katkins1 Wed 13-Aug-14 22:24:30

My friends are away, that's why my dd came back. We talk on Skype though smile I don't know about family support, will ask about it perhaps we don't fall into needing,needing it because I can do the basic things. I will ask about the bus pass, buses are so expensive where I live.

SilverStars Thu 14-Aug-14 20:02:56

The bus pass is easy to sort. If you had a psychotic episode you have to declare it to DVLA and usually cannot drive for a while so thefrefore can claim a free bus pass until you would be medically declared fit to drive. Handy and means you can go out to places for much less! Lots of parks are free, with a picnic making it exciting. Libraries are great places and often have free events in the holidays and your dd can join in the crafts and events they do whilst you sit and watch.

Lots of churches run free holiday clubs, and do not have to be a member to go and they are free.

My ds is too young for such things, so the park/pooh sticks/library to get out of the house it is!!

Katkins1 Thu 14-Aug-14 22:28:10

Ah, I just looked up how to apply for one. I've been really down today, cpn came and talked to her. Started asking if I'd act on suicidal thoughts etc, then she asked (because she has to) if I have any thoughts of harming myself or others. It's so horrible- I really want to talk to some-one; but my words are caught in my throat. I ache all over and can barely move some times- the CpN said that was psychosomatic, and the social worker dosent seem too worried about dd- will check on us next week when the cpn visits, too.

SilverStars Fri 15-Aug-14 20:02:40

Sorry you really struggling. Can you be honest with social worker and cpn, so that they can tailor their sessions with you to help you. I guess if you are not telling them how bad things are they cannot: give you extra sessions, refer to osychiatrist for meds review, get extra support in place etc.

Can you ask the cpn to support you seeing CAB or whoever relevant about benefit help or debt advice? They can help refer you to food banks if helpful just to support you for a week or so.

May be worth going to gp and asking for basic blood tests - if they normal may reassure you? I think I would want some tests now as if there is something physical then it will not be helping. Sometimes it is hard to persuade dr it is not all mental health related - so could you ask firmly?

Katkins1 Fri 15-Aug-14 23:51:58

I was honest with them, but as I'm meeting DD's basic needs, they aren't overly worried.

I'm seeing the CAB on Wednesday, so hopefully they can help me a little.

They said to wait a while on the setraline, and that will help, then review later, but I'm not so sure. I do think it's depression related, but I've had it 6 months now (the psychial stuff), so it's getting a bit wearing.

temporaryusername Fri 15-Aug-14 23:53:42

I agree about the blood tests, they're usually really willing to run basic bloods and ask for your ESR and CRP to be tested. Also, I wonder if some of the pain is due to disturbed sleep and lack of sleep - that can cause a sort of jetlag type muscle pain.

Hope you're ok.

temporaryusername Fri 15-Aug-14 23:55:02

Sorry - cross posted- but also ask for iron and vitamin d to be tested.

Katkins1 Sat 16-Aug-14 00:04:36

Ok, I will ask. What's 'ESR ' and 'CRP' ? It seems to be all of the time now, even if I'm resting. I had huge pains in my arms when psycotic, and have good and bad days with those, and my legs too. Never had when lacked sleep- even when little one was a baby, strangely. I have migranes and a swollen throat too- usually after extertion.Today, I did a reading (am a poet/writer) at a cafe, and was feeling so unwell after. It was a journey (half hour each way and short walk) I would have done no hassle before, now my throat feels constricted. Really horrible.

temporaryusername Sat 16-Aug-14 00:36:00

Erythrocyte sedimentation rate and C-reactive protein (I think!) - they are both markers of inflammation. Your ESR could be raised if you're fighting an infection of some kind, or if you have swollen joints for example. I know they are both often given to people with widespread musculo-skeletal pain, they aren't really diagnostic but they can be pointers. They might run a basic rheumatology range of blood tests. It probably will just remain vaguely linked with the mental health issues and the stress your mind and body have been under. I hope it will abate soon. But no harm in getting the tests done.

I remember you mentioned glandular fever - you could ask to be tested for that too (Epstein- Barr basically), but the trouble is it is estimated that around 95% of us have been exposed and have the anti-bodies. I don't know if the results are different in the acute phase.

It is wonderful that you did that reading! Honestly, I'm so impressed, that is such a brave thing to do at any time let alone when you are feeling vulnerable and unwell. Good on you!! thanks.

You sound like you have so much to offer and so much good in your future. I'm not underplaying how hard it is to make that real when you're not well, but there is such reason to hope. You are doing really good things right now. Looking after your dd, making yourself go out, doing a reading - I need to follow your example and try. I know it doesn't yet 'feel' better, but doing the actions anyway will make a difference, I'm sure.

dontrunwithscissors Sat 16-Aug-14 07:39:02

I've not posted on here before, but have been following. I just wanted to add something regarding physical illness--I've just come through a depressive episode, where I felt so physically drained. For a long while, I put it down to the depression, especially as I didn't have any other symptoms. I eventually saw my GP. Turned out I have a kidney and ear infection Similar things have happened in the past. I think the depression weakens my immune system. As others have said, it can't hurt to have it checked, especially thyroid function. Hope you feel better soon.

Katkins1 Sat 16-Aug-14 16:06:34

Thank you. I feel so drained, sick, sore throat and hot and cold (just when walking). The aches are horrendous though, get them even when resting. I'm in so much pain I keep thinking you wouldn't let an animal suffer like this, never mind another human. I was waking home today and I just thought "I want to die". Not that I'd do anything about it, but I can't stand the emotional and physical pain anymore.

temporaryusername Mon 18-Aug-14 21:34:28

I saw on the other thread you're not feeling well. You are actually ill, you have every right to resources, you know it is true. It would be hard for anyone to stay constantly positive when coping with pain, even someone who didn't have depression. The fact you haven't had a call back doesn't reflect on their attitude to you, don't go down the road of thinking that, it will be about something unrelated they had to deal with. It's not good but I hope you'll hear tomorrow, call back if not. I think you need to be honest with them, they will be pleased that you are self aware about your symptoms.

I'm sorry I don't have any advice, just wanted to say - hold on and take it minute by minute, hour by hour. You've every right to feel pissed off and you can share on here as much as you like.

Katkins1 Mon 18-Aug-14 22:59:48

Thank you. They were good to offer to get me a consultant that quick. It will be a case of something like having an emergency, or the nurse forgetting. He has done that before! The pain has become unbearable, and so I'm guessing my anti depressants aren't working if it's somatic pain! I'm guessing the first thing would be to screen me for post psychotic depression and/or any other symptoms of psychosis, then review my meds.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now