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Do I need antidepressants? Sleeping tablets? Or just a kick up the arse..?

(18 Posts)
avocadogreen Thu 27-Nov-14 19:23:51

My exH left me with 2 DC very suddenly 8 months ago, after I discovered his affair... some of you may remember my angst-ridden threads from back then.

Since then I'm doing ok. I found a job, which I love, I sorted out the finances, the kids are doing well at school. I even met another man, which was great at the time though it ended 2 weeks ago, in hindsight it was probably a bit of a rebound thing.

But I'm having real trouble sleeping. I drink every night, usually just a glass or two of wine. I've started smoking again. And I often cry myself to sleep. I don't miss exH or want him back, but I'm exhausted and overwhelmed with the responsibility of it all and struggling to accept that this is my life.

I don't think I'm depressed. I wake up happy, usually with one or both DC in bed with me. I love my job and find it a great escape from my problems. I have plenty of good friends and see them often. It's just the nights...

Would anti depressants help? Or would a GP prescribe me sleeping pills? Or do I just need to give it time? The time of year isn't helping if I'm honest sad

Phoenixfrights Thu 27-Nov-14 19:32:25

It sounds like you've had a rough run and it's no surprise if you have trouble sleeping.

Is the problem early waking, not being ableto drop ff, or stay asleep?

GP consult would be wise I reckon. Sleeping tablets are generally not dished out unless you are not functioning and for good reason. They are not a good long- or even medium-term fix.

There may just be a physical reason for your insomnia and GP will be able to rule them out.

If you are not feeling depressed at all then I'm not sure the GP would recommend ADs but I could be wrong.

Have you tried exercise/ a SAD lamp.... it's a tricky time of year for MH issues.


avocadogreen Thu 27-Nov-14 19:58:33

Thanks for the reply... generally it's sometimes not being able to drop off, sometimes waking at about 2am and not being able to drop off. I find in the evenings I often get unbearably sad just before bedtime. I guess that's when the loneliness hits me. I end up pouring a big glass of wine to help me sleep but then that's usually the times when I fall asleep but wake up a few hours later.

JontyDoggle37 Thu 27-Nov-14 20:02:11

The waking at 2am will be the wine - just as you metabolise it, you wake up, I think it's something to do with the sugar. Happens to me whenever I drink wine which is very annoying. So, cut the wine, squeeze a brisk walk in somewhere in the day (which will help tire you out and make you feel happier), and you'll probably sleep and feel a whole bunch better.

InfinitySeven Thu 27-Nov-14 20:06:54

Wine isn't a good crutch. It'll get you to sleep, but it won't help you stay there, and soon you develop a need for the wine and getting to sleep will be even harder.

Have you had it tonight? I'd stop that, completely, for a while. Maybe a fortnight, and see if it makes a difference.

I agree with Phoenix that antidepressants aren't likely to be the answer if you're not feeling depressed. In actual fact, it sounds like your evenings are a bit unfulfilled, and that might be affecting your ability to sleep?

I get very lonely if I'm on my own in the evenings, so I try to find things I enjoy to distract me. A new book, a long bath, watching something good on TV, baking, painting... There must be something that you like to do, that would help your brain unwind and make sleeping easier, and also put your evenings to better use. I think that could make the world of difference.

It sounds like you've had a really tough time but you've turned it around really well, so this is just the final hurdle.

merlehaggard Thu 27-Nov-14 20:11:47

I would be more inclined to speak to the doctor concerning possible anti depressants rather than sleeping tablets. Hopefully that could address the sleeping problems. I'd also stay off then alcohol, coffee etc.

My experience of sleeping tablets was that they helped me get to sleep but then I'd wake up a few hours later and not be able to go back to sleep. Sometimes I'd then take another one and then wake up groggy. When I stopped taking them, I started sleeping through the night again.

avocadogreen Thu 27-Nov-14 20:19:39

You're right my evenings are pretty unfulfilled but they are spent doing dishes, washing, cleaning, hanging washing out etc etc... I try to read before bed and feel better when I have a good book to get into. By the time I get to sit down it's often 10 or 11pm. Really I should go to bed then but I often end up watching tv or reading as I feel I need to unwind. I think I'm just lonely and still not used to spending evenings on my own. I do see friends on my weekends without the kids and sometimes after school with the kids. But it's at nightime in bed on my own that all the worries and fears creep in and I can't sleep.

avocadogreen Thu 27-Nov-14 20:29:30

The reason I was wondering about sleeping tablets is that a couple of months ago I was on co-codamol after a minor operation and I slept like a baby- it was wonderful! I wondered if sleeping tablets would have the same effect...

InfinitySeven Thu 27-Nov-14 20:29:33

I'm the same. I know it sounds stupidly wishy-washy but it's the only thing that works for me. If my brain is enjoying doing something, it sabotages me less!

SandyJ2014 Thu 27-Nov-14 21:46:13

Without a doubt, the first step should be stopping smoking and drinking. Get healthy, eat well and exercise. Don't go near sleeping tablets, they are terrible for your all round health and also cause depression. What you are experiencing I think is very much a product of what you have been through. My view is that ADs should be a very last resort. Sending you so much strength flowers x

lemisscared Thu 27-Nov-14 21:52:05

Sleeping tablets can be addictive do it's unlikely that your gp will prescribe them unless its to break a pattern of acute sleeplessness.

It sounds like you are doing too much and should try and sit down sooner. Think about what really needs done, leave the rest

Phoenixfrights Thu 27-Nov-14 21:54:00

Yes, agreed, it does sound like you're doing way too much. Can you leave the washing etc until the weekend and just sit down with a good book.

avocadogreen Thu 27-Nov-14 22:05:56

The thing about leaving stuff is it still has to be done the next day...and there's only me. My 4yo has issues being left in a room on her own (various reasons, I think since exH left and also because we had a burglary a few months ago while we were away) and also they fight a lot, so getting things done with the kids around is difficult.

Despite the fact that he turned out to be an absolute fuckwit, exH used to be pretty good around the house- he was tidier than me and never minded putting a wash on, would hang stuff out, do the dishes while I put the kids to bed etc. It's hard adjusting to doing it all on my own while also working, when before I was a SAHM. I often feel we are just on the edge of coping. But the kids are happy, just had amazing parents evening reports for them. It's just me who's struggling.

CogitoErgoSometimes Fri 28-Nov-14 08:19:38

Sorry you're struggling. I don't think you need ADs so much as you need a bit of moral/practical support, people to talk to and other things that will make you feel less alone in the evenings until more of the raw hurt has worn off. Do you have any friends that would come round and join you for supper, for example?

In the meantime, it's probably a good idea to simply not buy bottles of wine. If it's not there you can't drink it and the money you save you could hire a cleaner to come in once a week

Phoenixfrights Fri 28-Nov-14 18:18:46

You have had so many adjustments to make. I'm not surprised in the least if you feel you're only just coping.

I get what you're saying about stuff needing to be done and how difficult it is with kids around. Could they help more? Put a wash on, do the washing up?

Providing they aren't physically hurting eachother I would leave them to squabble and bicker. All siblings do it I reckon.

Keep on keeping on and if finances allow, buy in help. flowers

Phoenixfrights Fri 28-Nov-14 18:21:11

Just going back to work on its own is enough to send most people into a spin.

My standards dropped hugely when I did, and to be honest that was from a low base smile

Headgone Fri 28-Nov-14 18:37:31

I think you need to give yourself more time. I am a year or so on from you and I have only just really started to recover emotionally. I thought I was doing fine but now I look back and think I just kept going because I had to and everything was a struggle.

As for the evenings, like you I don't sit down till late. I have cut out the midweek alcohol as I didn't like the morning after feeling even after only one glass. Feeling fresher in the morning is a decent price to pay. Why don't you try going to bed earlier in the week? Especially as you are working.

What you're feeling is entirely normal considering what you have been through.

avocadogreen Sat 29-Nov-14 12:46:25

Thank you all, this thread has helped a lot. It's good to know I'm not going crazy... It has been a tough year, and everyone says I'm doing so well, I feel like they don't know the real me, so it's good to let it out. ExH has the kids this weekend so I had a good long sleep... need to tackle some housework now and meeting friends for dinner later.

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