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Doing it without AD's?(21 Posts)
Has anyone got through a period of pretty serious depression without AD's?
I dont like the side effects.
Yes. I don't react well to antidepressants; they make me very anxious and strange. It's hard but TBH the stats on antidepressants show only a very modest number of people improve more on antidepressants than on placebo, so you may very well cope as well as you would have done if you were taking antidepressants. Good luck, and I hope you feel better soon. There are lots of non-medication options that can help - distraction, mindfulness, CBT, other therapies, exercise, etc.
I have found diet and exercise help me. By exercise, I'm talking non complicated, so just swimming helps me relax, and walking with nice surroundings.
For diet suggestions, have a Google for happy foods for depression or similar search terms, and you should get some links which list the type of goodness you need, eg calcium, magnesium, iron, omega 6, and which foods you find these in.
I haven't done CBT, tried counselling and that wasn't for me, but after a couple of bouts of depression I started becoming aware of my triggers and also coping mechanisms more. I try hard to change the way I deal with things now. It's not easy at times, my DH isn't sympathetic to my depression (3 dcs, so I was more prone to pnd, having already had depression when my best friend died), and this coincided with me having a miscarriage and my lovely dad being diagnosed with Alzheimer's, and caring for him at home with my sis as long as we possibly could. DH buries his head in the sand and pretends things are normal, or that I'm being unreasonable, I'm not sure which anymore, but no longer have the energy to try and explain how much of a toll life has taken.
If you can get as much support around you as possible, I would say that's a first step. Also recognising your trigger, has anything specific happened, a build up of things, or just general life has dragged you down? This will help you deal with how you feel now in moving forward to dealing with it, in my experience.
Very best wishes, it's not a nice place to be at all. Be kind to yourself and take as much opportunity to rest and relax as you can x
Thank you both.
Furry I looked that up and you're right, AD's have a negligible effect unless you are very severely depressed it says in one study.
Daisy, so sorry your DP doesn't support you after all those terrible things that happened.
I dont have any support at all either. I don't have a DP and my family either don't get it or don't care, or both. Their way of dealing with me since I became depressed or whenever I need any help is to brow beat me and say they are worse than me. They are happy when I am doing things for them or buying them things or supporting them but when I need help, I dont get any, just slapped down. They tell me at least you don't have cancer, go and visit a cancer ward and see that you have no problems. Well, if curing depression was that simple, no one would suffer. I may not be dying but that doesn't mean I cannot be unhappy.
For me it has been a downward spiral over the last few years that has caused this. Everything in my life that could have gone wrong did. One after the other, it happened. My relationship, my job, my health, everything, when I had the final straw I just hit rock bottom and was unrecogniseable to myself.
I am fearful of my future even now and worry that if anything else goes wrong, I've lost my fortitude so to speak.
STH Your family has a very sad attitude to your suffering. Are they generally bad at dealing with people who are unwell, or do they save their nastiness for you?
Some supportive words would cost them nothing. Do you have a good friend who cares? I hope so
Marchate they save their nastiness for me and then want support themselves from me.
I'm trying not to burden my friends at all. Dont want them getting sick of me. Just me alone with my thoughts.
That sounds all so hard for you. Some people bury their heads in the sand with any mental illness, depression is just like anything that can go wrong with any part of your body. It's a chemical imbalance in your brain, as a result of the feel good chemicals becoming depleted over time through 'wear and tear' for want of a better description. When times are tough your brain uses them up quicker than it can make them and it takes some time to redress that.
A lot of people just don't get that and 'pull yourself together' can be thrown about too easily.
You really sound like you could do with some professional support, have you seen your GP recently? They can help you access the different types of therapy available. I hope you don't mind me asking, but which AD were you on that gave you side effects, and what side effects did you feel? Just that your GP could discuss alternative ADs, which might suit you better. I've been on a couple in the past which I didn't have side effects with, whereas a friend of mine was like yourself and didn't suit one of them, but a different one really helped her. I appreciate that wasn't your initial question however, but the meds to start with alongside a talking / behavioural therapy may help.
I had a terrible GP who was full of crap. She just said to me ....go to the gym, do something with yourself and asked me why I was even here. She was so dismissive and careless.
I went to another GP recently having not dared go back to the GP sicne last summer and he took me seriously.
He said my level of depression was very VERY bad and put me on mirtazapine. I couldnt tolerate that as I felt very groggy all the next day. I couldnt wake up and then felt bad all day.
He then tired low dose citalopram but I have so far had vivid scary dreams and dont like it. he wants me to persevere and then he will up the dose. I dont want to but he thinks I should be on it from what I described to him.
that is without him knowing about the rest of it
This new GP I saw is very sympathetic and makes follow ups to see me. So I am glad I went to see him as I wasnt seeing even a GP after my last appointment last August with that crap GP.
Daisy the pull yourself together is so screamingly patronising isnt it? I've been pulling myself together for so many years, I cant anymore. I guess many people would think my life was good, but walk a mile in someone elses shoes......
my area offers virtually nothing in terms of therapies. So I guess I have to pay. One time I wish I had insurance.
Oh that's awful with the GP, most of them are so good and sympathetic to it now. I'm glad you now have an understanding one. I've been on Citalopram, as has my sister and a friend. My sis and friend both had settling in disturbances with it, but it did work out, it's just whether you feel you can persevere I guess. Is the feeling that it might help good enough to cope with it for now? How long did the GP say to persevere? I seem to recall a couple of weeks not much longer? I was on 20mg but my friend went up to 40mg (marriage ended, big problems at work, resulting in breakdown).
This might sound ridiculous, but have you googled CBT or checked Amazon for some books? Your GP may even be able to recommend one? Just reading around some of the different therapies might give you an idea of which you feel would suit you? (I hated counselling, wasn't for me at all but it works for many.)
But many are now not giving out ads like they used to. And rightly so. Most of the latest evidence shows they are no better than a placebo. Which is not to say GPs should be dismissive, they should still monitor and offer help. My GP really impressed me when he said to dd that a successful consultation wasn't typically where the patient was sent out clutching a prescription but had been listened to and helped.
GP is seeing me again in a couple of weeks then he wants to up my dose.
I did see that AD's are little better than a placebo unless the depression is very bad.
but my depression was bad to the extent that I wasn't leaving the house for sometimes 2 weeks at a time, I was staying in bed for 3 days and not eating or even drinking.
I didn't tell my GP about the not taking care of myself such as not brushing my teeth or about the self harm episodes.
So I guess he thought it was bad enough to need it even without the stuff I didnt tell him.
He is very nice and supportive in a start contrast to the other GP, she didnt even offer a follow up.
Counselling I dont want to do as I have heard that just talking and talking about stuff with no solution is pointless. CBT probably better so will look at that. had some years ago for something else so will look into.
That does sound bad. Sorry to hear that, op. I have been there and would still say that ads don't help- me and many. Which is not to say "pull yourself together" at all, quite the opposite. I would suggest a whole package of ongoing support from GP/counsellor/family & friends ideally/exercise even if just a gentle walk every day/good diet and sleep to build up your reserves. I really don't think there's any quick fix, medically at all. And there are alternatives like St. John's wort and 5htp also, the latter has worked well for me.
Dam a whole message just disappeared! I hope this isn't intrusive, but I just wondered if you might be able to distance yourself from those people who are not being supportive right now? It doesn't sound as if it's helping being around them especially whilst you're trying so hard to find the right help for yourself.
You really do deserve to be happy and don't need additional stress from others when it sounds like you're trying as best you can to help yourself. You also don't need the burden of having to help people who don't sound like they need your energy as much as you do, but please forgive me if I've got thst wrong and it comes across as rude towards these people.
I am trying to distance myself from family. Their idea of "help" is you are doing this to you. You are making yourself miserable. You dont have cancer. Think of people who are dying. I have these problems and I am worse than you.
I leave them well alone, they wont leave me alone. They keep interfering when I am in no mood to deal with them when all they have done is make things worse.
And no they dont have it worse than me. They havent been through any of the things that I have over the last few years and create their own drama. Whereas the stuff that happened to me I had no control over.
I just dont know what to do anymore. Everything I have tried to fix my life and get it back on track blows up in my face. I am wary of even trying now.
It sounds really tough for you. Can you just break things down into baby steps for now, so you're not overwhelmed by the whole picture. As pp says above, try to have a walk outside everyday that it's dry, and a good night sleep. Even something as simple as putting hand cream on everyday, I know it probably sounds trivial, but start with something little to remind yourself you're worth looking after.
If you also SH and don't take care of your physical health, is it possible your 'delightful' family has some responsibility for the way you are feeling? Have you SHed from a very young age?
You probably have to detach from them, at least until you feel better
I have already come along way form not leaving the house. That has stopped and I am out and about virtually every day and going back to work on Monday.
I still feel low all the time though. I have started taking care of myself again, doing my skin care most days and I even painted my nails for the first time in many months yesterday.
But even though I can take care of myself again and back to functioning, I still feel dead inside and worthless and that life isnt worth fixing this time.
Marchate you are very perceptive. I dont SH very often at all. Almost never. I hadnt done it in I dont even remember how long since this episode of depression.
I cant explain here as it will out me and this isnt chat so it wont disappear in 90 days. But yes my family are responsible for alot of this and it stems from childhood / teenage years. I never told them I used to explore SH as they were too busy being up their own asses and I had to take care of everyone who was falling apart. Both had MH issues and self created drama throughout my childhood and I held everyone together. When I finally fell apart they were like DONT YOU START!
I didnt SH until i was a mid teen. When I told them about the SH and had been doing it since a teen, they said "want sympathy you silly fucking cow". Talking to my family is like talking to a brick wall, they dont get it and they dont care. If they need help, they come after me for it, if I need it I am on my own.
They probably have caused all my relationship issues too as I dont know what genuine love looks like. It is why I cling to anyone who gives me attention as this lot dont and never did and I am so lonely.
You probably should join us on the Stately Homes thread in Relationships. Messed up adult 'children' hang out there
Somehow you have to find a way to lose the guilt you have had loaded onto you. You are not even partly responsible for the way you were/are treated by your family. You deserve so much better
Identified a massive trigger.
Every time I have to have something to do with them and it is unavoidable then it triggers a downward spiral.
Join the Stately Homes thread if you haven't already. Read the links in the OP there, even if you don't feel like contributing
Sorry to hear you've having a bad time at the moment.
In answer to your original question, yes there are alternatives to ad's.
I know you're not keen on counselling but it's been a big turning point for me. There are other talking therapies and there might be an approach for you.
St. John's wort is meant to be helpful (obviously check you can take it).
Exercise, yes we all know it but it really can help. It doesn't need to be the gym, it could be a walk in the woods or somewhere else.
Are you sleeping ok? If you're not then try and get in a good sleep routine, it honestly can help hugely.
Alcohol.. Do you drink much? We know it doesn't help long term.
Finally do consider other anti-depressants. There are lots of different types, I think I've tried 6 or 7 before I found ones that helped me.
Do look after yourself though, i know first hand it's difficult when you don't have that support to rely on.
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