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how long to get over majorly depressed episode?

(7 Posts)
dangermouseisace Mon 29-Feb-16 08:42:55

Hi…I was wondering if anyone could impart some advice. I've had issues with depression throughout most of my teenage/adult life. I was in hospital with MH as a teenager, and then again for 9 weeks recently. I was a complete mess- the only thing I could think about was suicide. I've improved greatly since then.

When I had postnatal depression with DS2 literally 2 weeks after starting medication I improved and was fine very soon after that.

But this time…it's so slow, I'm wondering if I'll ever get back to 'normal'. I keep thinking that I'm getting there as I can do the general daily living tasks, and then something completely sets me off- anything that involves a small amount of stress that I don't usually have to deal with, and I can feel myself going right back down and end up thinking extremely negative thoughts. I've got quite a lot of constant stress in my life due to unfortunate circumstances at the moment…and I'm coping well with that. It's the little things…then I end up in circles thinking "well if I can't deal with that, how can I ever expect to have my children back properly, or get a job, etc etc" and I just keep thinking that things will never be the same again.

How long has it taken other people to get over episodes as an adult? Did you ever get back to how you were before?

NanaNina Mon 29-Feb-16 13:37:24

I don't think there's a specific answer to this because we are all different. It isn't like a broken leg that we know will take several weeks to heal and then physio...........just as some meds suit one but not another, some will get better quicker than others and for some (like myself) it will fluctuate and change from day to day and sometimes through the day. Like you I can be fine and then a small setback will have me crying again. Mental illness is a torment.

I'm sure there are people who make a complete recovery but they don't tend to be on these boards for obvious reasons. Sorry if this is a bit pessimistic, it's meant to be realistic.

dangermouseisace Mon 29-Feb-16 16:03:33

thanks nana you're not pessimistic- my 'normal' was on medication but at least able to function so that I could work in a stressful job etc, with the occasional bad period every couple of years, where I'd have to have a few weeks off then back to functioning well again.

I'm sorry that you are still struggling nana. Is it getting any better at all?

1234hello Mon 29-Feb-16 22:02:27

It can take time IME. And it does depend what you mean by "get over".

Personally I have found recovery takes 6 months or more from something involving a hospital stay. And even then you may have to rethink what "normal" is, eg levels of motivation and energy etc may still be low although the main symptoms have eased.

Be kind to yourself and don't put pressure on yourself to feel "normal". I have heard someone else say it took them 2 year to feel truly themselves. That isn't meant to be disheartening. But logically it can take that long to "get over" other big traumas or medical crises so it's not too surprising that mental health things are similar.

Good luck flowers

NanaNina Tue 01-Mar-16 00:15:20

Thanks for asking dangermouse - I go up and down so it's hard to say. I have had an awful weekend but I'm fine today and tomorrow is whole new day. I can quite often be really crap in the morning but my mood lifts as the day wears on and I'm almost always ok in the evening. The bad days differ too - from "not good" to "awful" to "day from hell" - this has been going on for 6 years but I think it's because of my age (I'm 72) I have a lovely CPN and see the psychiatrist every 2 months and on 2 different ADs and Lithium (a mood stabiliser) but I don't think they do much good.

The psych and my CPN have been encouraging me to try ECT and it's tempting as it has a 70- 80% success rate but I'm very scared about the possibility of memory loss. The medics tend to gloss over that but I've done a lot of research and the incidence of memory loss is quite high.

SO that's how it is for me...........on bad days I can't bear to see anyone (only DP) who is loving and supportive. I read about women who can "paint on a smile" but I can't do that, so my life is adversely affected. I hate that I can't see my grandchildren as often as I'd like or make plans with friends as I never know if I will make it.

Oh god I'd better shut up - I don't usually write about myself in this kind of detail.

dangermouseisace Tue 01-Mar-16 15:45:04

thanks hello and nana for your replies. I guess 2 months after being in hospital might not be realistic for full normality then!

nana the decision whether to have ECT or not must be a massive one. And probably an even more difficult one to make when you are depressed, what with decision making problems and stuff. Have you been on lithium for long- I'd heard it can take 6 months to have an effect?

I'm the same- not one of those that can paint on a smile. I do the opposite and don't wear make up on a bad day if I absolutely have to go out, as otherwise I risk looking like I'm a member of KISS grin

ProfessorPreciseaBug Tue 01-Mar-16 21:20:57

Please don't get sacred by this, but it took me over six years from the time I was signed off work with depression to a point when I can say I am sort of normal..
What I do recall is that I would look back over a period of six months and think to myself, I'm better now and how I felt six months ago was not actually better.. then six months later I would think I was now better... and again six months later.

Even now the black dog sometimes growls in its kennel. I hzve come to terms with rewlising i probably won't ever be "normal". But that's ok by me as it is part of who I am..😀

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