Depression and Anxiety at an older age

Posted by pjss48 @pjss48, Sep 14, 2018

I am a 70 year old woman who has had depression and anxiety for a long time. It got worse 3 years ago when my husband lost one of his jobs. I panicked and my anxiety increased. I was afraid to do things. like driving. I have arthritis pretty bad and foot problems. I’m a Christian and my faith has helped me. My husband was a pastor and our church closed 3 months ago. We’ve had continual stress. Sometimes I don’t know what to do with myself during the day. I’ve gotten help from several doctors, including a psychiatrist. I also have IBS. I am better. I’m taking trazadone duloxetine, remeron and xanax. Also on osteo biflex, probiotic , bentyl and celebrex. I want to get on Sam e but it may interact with one of my meds. Thanks for listening.

I am 61 years old. I just got back from Mayo Psychiatry Clinic. They diagnosed me with Major Depressive Disorder, Complex PTSD, anxiety and alcohol abuse. I cannot believe this is my life right now. I have been in an emotionally abusive marriage for 38 years. It has been devastating. I am 22 days sober, but still living in the same house as my husband terrifies me. I will be entering the Transitions program at Mayo, joining a women’s Narcissistic Abuse recovery and support group and attend virtual AA meetings. I think these should be a domestic violence..and that includes emotional abuse…on this site. I wish all of you on your journeys the very best. We dont feel strong now but we will get through it!

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@laurry

I am 61 years old. I just got back from Mayo Psychiatry Clinic. They diagnosed me with Major Depressive Disorder, Complex PTSD, anxiety and alcohol abuse. I cannot believe this is my life right now. I have been in an emotionally abusive marriage for 38 years. It has been devastating. I am 22 days sober, but still living in the same house as my husband terrifies me. I will be entering the Transitions program at Mayo, joining a women’s Narcissistic Abuse recovery and support group and attend virtual AA meetings. I think these should be a domestic violence..and that includes emotional abuse…on this site. I wish all of you on your journeys the very best. We dont feel strong now but we will get through it!

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@laurry Hi, I am glad you reached out. My heart goes out to you. My husband was verbally abusive when my kids were growing up and verbally abusive to me. But, I guess I thought it was normal. He is better now.
You are doing great things by getting help and I hope the husband and you will be able to divorce. You are going to get stronger going through all of what Mayo has to offer. Congratulations on being sober for 22 days. Take one day at a time. I know you will be okay and I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers.

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Liked by Parus, lilypaws

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@pjss48 I know it's hard. Mental Illness runs through our family. My mom left us at her age of 69. I just turned 69, but I don't have manic depression/Bipolar 1. My son was the one who got hit the hardest with Bipolar 1. My daughter and I were diagnosed with Bipolar 2 in Seattle and San Diego, but when we moved back to our home state we are just diagnosed with depression and anxiety Complex. I had a big surgery, 9 hours a fusion and stenosis in my back. I was fine before the surgery, even though I was in a lot of pain. Now that the surgery is over about 3 months post surgery I am depressed. I also have trouble doing things, but just make up my mind I'm going to do it. A shower for me next. I'm on Lexapro, Lamictal, and Klonopin. There are some major things going on in our lives that makes me sad.

Liked by Parus

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Klonopin is what really helps me with daily anxiety & depression. I take Effexor now but don't feel like it helps. I live in Florida & it's next to impossible to find a doc who will prescribe Klonopin. I'm 67 & have chronic pain since 1996. The 24/7 pain causes my issues & I know what works for me but no doctors will listen to me. I take Norco for pain management. Benzos aren't recommended for Hydrocodone users, however, whatever time I have left I'd prefer to be comfortable & am willing to to take the chance of the 2 meds causing me issues. I've been on Klonopin & pain meds for 24 years & never had a problem with them. Why won't doctors listen to their patient's wishes?

Liked by Parus

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Vickimurray, you are truly blessed to have found a treatment that works for you. I wish you the best. I'm not as fortunate as you & am about to give up on medical help. We all have to die sometime & I don't fear it. In fact, I've thought about ending my life but, being a Christian, I just can't do that. In any event, I appreciate you sharing your journey.

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@jimhd

@lsittll I was trying Cymbalta several years ago, but stopped taking it because it didn't seem to be helping. My neurologist thought it was worth a second try. I'm not going to make any medication changes until I've recovered from surgery next month. I've learned over the past 15 years that I have to do one thing at a time, working with medications. I don't start a new medication if I'm in the process of trying another one because the results get confused. That's what happened with Cymbalta.

@lilypaws My surgery will be in the surgery center at the clinic the neurosurgeon works with. I live in central Oregon, and we knew that there were excellent doctors there when we decided where we wanted to live after retiring. The nearest teaching hospital is in Portland, 150 miles from here. Oregon Health Sciences University is on the level of Mayo, but the medical community here is so good that I've only gone to OHSU twice, for tests that the local doctors couldn't do.

Unless I have issues with pain after surgery, it's supposed to be an outpatient procedure, a much smaller surgery from yours. Interesting that my stenosis is in the same place as yours. I think that after surgery I might stand straighter, and I'll regain the inch I've lost. I'm sorry that you've had such a difficult time after your procedures. I hope you're beginning to see light at the end of the tunnel.

Jim

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@jimhd I'm glad that you have great health where you live. We live in our home state now, Iowa, but lived in the Seattle area 11 years and the San Diego area for 5 years then back to the Seattle area (Bellevue) I really miss Seattle with all the trees and I don't mind the rain. I think it rains just as much here, but not this summer.
I am almost 3 months post op and doing very well. I have a depression anxiety disorder, so I have gotten depressed since the surgery, but was fine before the surgery. I'm surprised they are not at least keeping you over night. Yes, mine was a big 9 hour one with screws and rods. I cannot bend, twist, or lift anything too heavy. Had to give up my 14 year old dog, because I couldn't take care of her. I do wear a brace. Lily is at a good place where we use to board her. They wanted her and told me they loved Lily. But I miss her tremedously (SP). She was my dog and did not like my husband. She knew I was in pain so started having anxiety. My husband is relieved not to have since he barely would get close to her and she would act up, not really growling.
Wish you well on your surgery. Please let me know how you come out.

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@vickimurray

I am 65 years old and have suffered from treatment-resistant depression and anxiety for most of my life. Of course, the current situation in the country – the pandemic and the rioting – has not helped the situation. My husband and I are fortunate in that we have social security and some small bits of income from here and there. We have lived simply for many years; we downsized when our son left for college so we can support ourselves quite nicely on social security; not desperate, but not hitting the fancy restaurants (when they were open) or the ballet (ha) either. The point is that I was in real trouble until 15 years ago when I found my current team of doctors. I have my primary care physician, a psychiatrist and a psychologist. I am taking four psych meds: Wellbutrin, Lamictal, Neurontin, and Zoloft. It has taken some time to find the combination that works best for me. Psych drugs are so individual to the person being treated. Where one works for this person, it won't work for another person. There are always the side effects to contend with, but if you have a psychiatrist willing to keep working with you, you can find something that works. My psychiatrist is adamant that you also need a psychologist, someone to talk out your problems with. My psychiatrist deals with the big things bothering me, but mostly he is the medicine man. And to his credit, I've never seen a doctor more knowledgeable about psych meds and medicines in general as he is. But the psychologist is someone to listen to you while you work out the nitty gritty of your life; someone you feel safe with so you can cry and say whatever you need to say. My husband goes with me because, actually, we are both in therapy. My husband has helped me deal with my mental health issues for 46 years, so he can provide a lot of confirmation, backup and history for the psychologist. We are lucky in that Medicare pays for almost everything, so my outlay of dollars is not so hard to handle. In closing, I strongly recommend, if your pocket book will allow, to seek out a psychologist, as well as your psychiatrist. And prayer will help you not give up hope. The situation in the country will turn around, and if you work with your doctor, you will find the right combination of drugs to help you cope. You may always have depression and anxiety, but you will be able to live with it. Good luck.

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@vickimurray I also have treatment resistant major depression, along with anxiety disorder and civilian PTSD. I just turned 70 this month, and was diagnosed with depression 20 years ago. I take Wellbutrin and Mirtazapine for depression, and Klonopin for anxiety.

I have treatment resistant neuropathy, as well. Idiopathic small fiber peripheral polyneuropathy and autonomic neuropathy. I've tried every medication my pcp, neurologist and pain specialist could think of that might reduce the severe pain in my feet. Morphine sulfate contin has taken the edge off the pain for around 7 years. Arthritis doesn't require such high powered meds.

My wife and I raised our 2 children very frugally, and even though I never received what most people would consider a living wage, we own our home with no mortgage and have more money in investments than my well paid siblings. It would be nice to have money for a new car, but God has always provided. We're saving money now to go on a cruise to Alaska for our 50th anniversary in two years.

Living below the poverty level all of my adult life has made early retirement enforced on me because of mental health issues not seem so scary. I think we'll do OK.

Past midnight! Gotta turn my phone off and go to sleep.

Jim

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@jimhd

@vickimurray I also have treatment resistant major depression, along with anxiety disorder and civilian PTSD. I just turned 70 this month, and was diagnosed with depression 20 years ago. I take Wellbutrin and Mirtazapine for depression, and Klonopin for anxiety.

I have treatment resistant neuropathy, as well. Idiopathic small fiber peripheral polyneuropathy and autonomic neuropathy. I've tried every medication my pcp, neurologist and pain specialist could think of that might reduce the severe pain in my feet. Morphine sulfate contin has taken the edge off the pain for around 7 years. Arthritis doesn't require such high powered meds.

My wife and I raised our 2 children very frugally, and even though I never received what most people would consider a living wage, we own our home with no mortgage and have more money in investments than my well paid siblings. It would be nice to have money for a new car, but God has always provided. We're saving money now to go on a cruise to Alaska for our 50th anniversary in two years.

Living below the poverty level all of my adult life has made early retirement enforced on me because of mental health issues not seem so scary. I think we'll do OK.

Past midnight! Gotta turn my phone off and go to sleep.

Jim

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@jimhd, I appreciate what you wrote about living your lives frugally and despite low wages, managing to own your home while prioritizing investing to boot.

As a single parent on a teacher's salary, planning and frugality made getting to the end of the month not overdrawn at the bank worthy of a celebration for years. Two specific dates of jubilation came for me on the day I paid off my last installment of my daughter's college debt and then later my last mortgage payment.

Jotting down gratitudes for the first 76 yrs of my life the other night, being my age and debt free with savings and not waking up each day to face chronic pain were among the top. Among others was the lack of envy of what others had; learning early the difference between "want" and "need" and becoming truly content with simple pleasures and the wonders of our natural world. Ready access to medical treatment and good medical insurance coverage which so many lack found a place along with blessings of loyal friends throughout my life who listened, understood, were loyal, commiserated and celebrated with me.

Despite your health challenges, I sincerely salute your spirit and "looking forward plans" to celebrate your 50th with an Alaskan cruise.

As my son-in-law once shared with me, "It is not the tragedies or challenges that occur in one's life that make the difference but how one acts upon those that determines what happens going forward". Both his mom and dad died within a year or two of one another as he was graduating high school.

There are many undersung everyday heroes among our Connect membership who continue to persevere with courage and optimism and you are certainly one of those undaunted warriors! Thank you for the inspiration and hope you give the rest of us. Sincerely

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@jimhd

@vickimurray I also have treatment resistant major depression, along with anxiety disorder and civilian PTSD. I just turned 70 this month, and was diagnosed with depression 20 years ago. I take Wellbutrin and Mirtazapine for depression, and Klonopin for anxiety.

I have treatment resistant neuropathy, as well. Idiopathic small fiber peripheral polyneuropathy and autonomic neuropathy. I've tried every medication my pcp, neurologist and pain specialist could think of that might reduce the severe pain in my feet. Morphine sulfate contin has taken the edge off the pain for around 7 years. Arthritis doesn't require such high powered meds.

My wife and I raised our 2 children very frugally, and even though I never received what most people would consider a living wage, we own our home with no mortgage and have more money in investments than my well paid siblings. It would be nice to have money for a new car, but God has always provided. We're saving money now to go on a cruise to Alaska for our 50th anniversary in two years.

Living below the poverty level all of my adult life has made early retirement enforced on me because of mental health issues not seem so scary. I think we'll do OK.

Past midnight! Gotta turn my phone off and go to sleep.

Jim

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I have a question concerning the pain in your feet–is it caused by spinal stenosis? I have spinal stenosis. I have pain in my back and it radiates down my right leg into my foot. I take pain pills. I need something for my depression. My doctor doesn't actually know how bad it is. I haven't told her. I take so many pills as it is, I don't know what wouldn't interfere with them. I am up and down. I have read where it is called rapid cycling. I don't know if I need uppers or downers! I am not kidding. If I had all of you depressed people in one room for a group meeting, I guarantee you, I would have you laughing. Then, after everyone leaves, I go home, I am super depressed. I need people. This isolation is really making me anxious. I could write a book. I will close for the moment. Take care–all of you. God bless and be with you. The Bible says laughter is the best medicine. Yes, it is. Also, another question! Does your doctor ever give you epidurals for the pain?

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@lilypaws

@pjss48 I know it's hard. Mental Illness runs through our family. My mom left us at her age of 69. I just turned 69, but I don't have manic depression/Bipolar 1. My son was the one who got hit the hardest with Bipolar 1. My daughter and I were diagnosed with Bipolar 2 in Seattle and San Diego, but when we moved back to our home state we are just diagnosed with depression and anxiety Complex. I had a big surgery, 9 hours a fusion and stenosis in my back. I was fine before the surgery, even though I was in a lot of pain. Now that the surgery is over about 3 months post surgery I am depressed. I also have trouble doing things, but just make up my mind I'm going to do it. A shower for me next. I'm on Lexapro, Lamictal, and Klonopin. There are some major things going on in our lives that makes me sad.

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Hi. I am wondering how you are doing! I was thinking if I had your address, I would send you a card in the mail. I had five boxes of cards delivered to my home (since I don't go to stores). I got them from the Christian Card Company. I love sending cards to people. These cards have Bible verses in them. I got two boxes the same because they are so cute with bunnies an teddie bears on them. I have already sent one full box. I got my dear 94-year-old Christian sister four boxes. She loves writing scripture in cards and sending them to the sick and the lonely. She is a wonderful, strong Christian. I was depressed the other evening–she called me on the phone–we talked for an hour. I was not depressed after we talked. Every one needs a person like her in their life. I met her at an in-home Bible study. The lady who started it went on to be with the Lord. Now, we are supposed to be meeting in a church. She is actually attending–I am not. She is so certain she is going to Heaven, she is looking forward to it. When I read the Bible, I get depressed wondering if I am going to Heaven. I have sinned so much after being saved. I feel guilty. I know Jesus died for me and for you. He came to save the sinners. This I understand. It is so complicated. I know I love Jesus, I love God and I have the Holy Spirit. Anyway, I think of you, I pray each day you are better and better. Repeat, Heal me O' Lord, and I will be healed. There is a wonderful book by Joseph Prince on healing.

Liked by lilypaws

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@pjss48

Karen thanks for your interest in my post. You have a lot to deal with. I hope knowing we have similar challenges and can talk to each other helps. Have a good night. God bless. Peggy

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Hi, I can relate and have days of negativity. Then, thanks to my meds, I have a few good days. One phrase that irks me is “you are not alone,” Because we are, but thanks to sites like this we are all alone together.

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@woogie

I have a question concerning the pain in your feet–is it caused by spinal stenosis? I have spinal stenosis. I have pain in my back and it radiates down my right leg into my foot. I take pain pills. I need something for my depression. My doctor doesn't actually know how bad it is. I haven't told her. I take so many pills as it is, I don't know what wouldn't interfere with them. I am up and down. I have read where it is called rapid cycling. I don't know if I need uppers or downers! I am not kidding. If I had all of you depressed people in one room for a group meeting, I guarantee you, I would have you laughing. Then, after everyone leaves, I go home, I am super depressed. I need people. This isolation is really making me anxious. I could write a book. I will close for the moment. Take care–all of you. God bless and be with you. The Bible says laughter is the best medicine. Yes, it is. Also, another question! Does your doctor ever give you epidurals for the pain?

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@woogie I know exactly how you feel. When I'm around people I'm happy. When I'm home I'm depressed. I'm on Lexapro, Lamictal, and Klonopin. If I can't sleep I go between Ambien and Melatonin.
Concerning you spinal stenosis, I also had pain down my right leg into my foot before my surgery and my right buttock hurt too. Had stenosis in my L-4 and 5. Have you seen a surgeon? I'm not a doctor but it sounds like you need the surgery I had. I have had some foot pain,since the surgery, but I think it's the shoes I have been wearing when I go for walks.
It also sounds like you need an anti-depressant. Have you seen a psychiatrist? Usually you have to go to a pain clinic to get epidurals. But, they only helped a short time. Are you close to a Mayo Clinic or another major hospital? My doctor referred me to Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN. I send my thoughts and prayers your way. God bless and be with you too. I have to go out today and get some new pads for my brace. If you don't remember me I'm the one who had the 9 hour fusion surgery. I'm getting along well. Just pain below my knee into my foot, but I'm going to wear my better shoes today.

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To those of us with civilian PTSD, treatment resistant major depression, anxiety. etc. as well as chronic pain. I oft wonder how much our past plays in these types of disorders (such a distasteful word as I feel freakish enough) were caused by abusive pasts. a lot I would surmise. The reality of this is evidence enough that many here are tenacious as we drag these weights with us. No self pity just my wandering/wondering mind that marvels at the determination in the events of seemingly insurmountable odds. Together we stand strong and we do matter.
Thanks for the input everyone.

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@lilypaws

@woogie I know exactly how you feel. When I'm around people I'm happy. When I'm home I'm depressed. I'm on Lexapro, Lamictal, and Klonopin. If I can't sleep I go between Ambien and Melatonin.
Concerning you spinal stenosis, I also had pain down my right leg into my foot before my surgery and my right buttock hurt too. Had stenosis in my L-4 and 5. Have you seen a surgeon? I'm not a doctor but it sounds like you need the surgery I had. I have had some foot pain,since the surgery, but I think it's the shoes I have been wearing when I go for walks.
It also sounds like you need an anti-depressant. Have you seen a psychiatrist? Usually you have to go to a pain clinic to get epidurals. But, they only helped a short time. Are you close to a Mayo Clinic or another major hospital? My doctor referred me to Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN. I send my thoughts and prayers your way. God bless and be with you too. I have to go out today and get some new pads for my brace. If you don't remember me I'm the one who had the 9 hour fusion surgery. I'm getting along well. Just pain below my knee into my foot, but I'm going to wear my better shoes today.

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LilyPaws, yes, indeed, I remember you! I have written several posts to you. I just can't tell you where they are. I wrote a long one to you. I didn't know you said the exact same thing I said: I need to be around people! I get depressed just as soon as someone leaves. At this point and time, we have no company. I told everyone not to come. I have had pneumonia many times in my life. I don't want the virus. Yes, I have been to seven surgeons. I know I need surgery–probably the same one you had. I am too old! I pray I never have to have any more surgeries! I have never had back surgeries but I have had other ones–nothing compared to what you just went through. On one note to you, I said I would like to send you a get well card. I don't know which post. We belong to the same groups, I think!

Liked by Parus

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@parus

To those of us with civilian PTSD, treatment resistant major depression, anxiety. etc. as well as chronic pain. I oft wonder how much our past plays in these types of disorders (such a distasteful word as I feel freakish enough) were caused by abusive pasts. a lot I would surmise. The reality of this is evidence enough that many here are tenacious as we drag these weights with us. No self pity just my wandering/wondering mind that marvels at the determination in the events of seemingly insurmountable odds. Together we stand strong and we do matter.
Thanks for the input everyone.

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Parus, perhaps we should start a group who have had abusive pasts. I would be a member.

Liked by Parus

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