How many others fake happiness in day-to-day life for fear of being found out?
I am really lost and desperate. I feel like this has been a part of me for so long now that nothing I can take (medication) or try to change in my behaviour will help. I have been hospitalized, tried numerous medications (all with numerous side effects), spoken to various health professionals (naturopaths, doctors, psychologists) and purchased a library of self-help books - these have so far been the ONLY thing that has actually helped, albeit only a little. I feel positive and motivated but only for a while. My diet is good and I exercise quite regularly, although there are always days/periods at a time where my legs feel like lead and I become dizzy and breathless walking only a few metres. On my good days I can train like an athlete! Well, almost :)I have realized the benefits of exercise as a great treatment for my anxiety over the years but unfortunately my depression dictates whether my body can actually physically carry through with it or not. This poses a bit of a problem for me as I am studying Fitness to be a personal trainer, prescribing programs that clients must adhere to get achieve results, and yet my own fitness regime is completely dependent on whatever chemical reaction is occurring in my brain from day-to-day!
I am 24 now and from at least the age of 11, I have lived in a state of constant anxiety with depression always presenting itself every couple of days. Any happy day I experience is almost always closely followed by one of submission to my illness. I feel confused and fatigued, like I have been on a drug-fuelled bender for days. I don't want to see anyone as I am so embarrassed by my complete lack of motivation and inability to carry a conversation. I feel like it must be so obvious to everyone how weird and morbid I am so I have spent literally years of my life at home in solitude just waiting for the light to shine again and to "snap out of" the haze. It takes more and more effort each time to pick myself back up and start again. I have come to accept this as part of who I am for now as I really don't know how to change. So I read, go for a gentle walk, play with my puppy and sleep it off until I feel better again.
I feel I have exhausted most forms of treatment (with the exception of ECT) and so I have also accepted that I will one day end my life. In the mean-time I will keep trudging as I don't want to disappoint or hurt my family. This has been the only thing that has kept me here as I know the pain it would cause. So I secretly hope for an "accident" to occur or a terminal illness to develop to put me out of my mysery, without the guilt of knowing that I did it to myself. I feel my family could deal better with my death that way.
I have just started seeing a new psychologist so I will see how this pans out for me. She is lovely and one that I have felt the most comfortable with so far. I will be stopping Pristiq today as I am experiencing too many side effects and have not read a lot of good reports, most are quite bad. So I plan to see my psychiatrist to try yet another medication. I am forever being told that "the right medication will help, you just have to keep trying different ones". Frankly, I have! And it does concern me what effects this is having on my mind and body. I am all too strongly aware of the severe rapid changes in my mood, however, and how they are seemingly independent of my circumstances. Which is why I will persist with the trial and error of medication.
I am living in hope that this will all change one day, the cloud will be lifted that has darkened my life for so long. I am still clinging to hope that I may get to experience in life that which others who are free of mental illness experience, happiness and contentment in its true form, without being forced or faked. It seems so out of reach and change seems impossible but I will keep trying, for the sake of my family and in hope that I can one day recover and help others to do the same.
This is my dream.
Thanks Angela for sharing. If your past has been clean and you have not suffered from a difficult childhood with anger and bitterness, I encourage you to look into some physical health causes such as thyroid and food allergies. Be sure to ask your doctor.
The answer is not medication. That can only be a band-aid preventing you from finding the real cause.
If you may be suffering from some anger and bitterness from someone else's abuse or hurtful actions or words, this may need to be dealt with - with a counselor. Ask your own psychologist about this or feel free to connect with one of our online counselors on our site.
Keep digging Angela. I hope our free e-course will spark some ideas of potential causes for your depression!
Don't give up! There is hope!