Long-term depression

Posted by seeker70 @seeker70, Oct 11, 2017

I have been depressed, when I think about it, since I was a kid (I”m a senior now!) I have been treated off and on with meds and minimal talk therapy, but nothing changes. In the past it has been underlying but as I grow older it is becoming more intense. People ask: ‘why are you depressed? I never get depressed, just get a better attitude’. Or they don’t hear my (probably passive-aggressive) cries for help. Or they say: ‘what do you have to be depressed about?’ Actually although I agree with these opinions to a certain extent, it does not address the problem that depression is not a ‘why’, not is it a ‘choice’. It’s almost like being gay, you just are. Maybe I should just accept it (guess that’s what I have done for decades 🙂 But I don’t want to. I want to feel better now. Earlier in my life I was able to enjoy things, although the depression would keep popping out. But now I seem to have trouble enjoying anything, including my own family, and it’s harder and harder to ‘push depression down’ once it’s popped. So I have longer periods of depression and sadness and sleeplessness and lonliness, an shorter periods of being able to enjoy my life. Or want something. Or look forward to anything. I will say too that I have as much to be happy about as I do to be unhappy – but as I said, it’s not a ‘why’. I’m looking for people to explore this idea, and to help each other begin to overcome. Or maybe it’s just me and there’s no one else who feels this way — 😉 Thank you for reading all this.

@parus

@sharlynn62 I am 66 and there is nothing anyone else can do. It is up to me. If I cannot use my CBT skills then what else is there? I am 66 and I do not mention the “D” word to anyone. I feel like a leper in society. I surely will get back on track. Currently I lack the desire to even try. Yup, listening to the depression demon. Native Americans left the tribe when they were no longer of value. Welcome to my pitiful world.

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Hi @ladybugmg, focus is one of the ways I have battled depression for the past 5 decades. Some would argue that it is an avoidance technique; I argue otherwise. Depression made it hard for me to focus and accomplish things in life. By focusing on one thing at a time and establishing specific goals to follow, my life has more meaning and I feel more productive. While this does not eliminate the depression, it does seem to keep it at a lower level — the clouds are not as dark. Clearly, it is necessary to focus on more than one item during any period of time — but I think of it as a hyper focus on one important goal, with the rest being secondary. As each goal is achieved, another item moves up to the hyper category. It works for me …

If you like to read, I enjoyed reading the Checklist Manifesto. While not read (or I expect written) specifically with depression in mind, I found it quite helpful.

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@charlie75

Hi Sharlynn62,
I’ve read the sharing between you and others in our group. I’ve been depressed for so many times that it became a comfortable space for me to occupy as I knew where I was and what was happening. I learned to feel the pain and continued to function after several years of suffering. I would put on my actors face and go out into the world and fool those around me although I was crying inside. My Father would tell me that I was my worse enemy. I was so sick that I didn’t understand. Of all the lessons that I’ve learned is that once I accept my illness, I have been able to work on the illness by people who are willing to help me recover. These people are professionals and others who share the same sicknesses and hope is instilled. I’ve learned that acceptance and hope are two verbs that require action on my part. Action helps with optimism and optimism brings me out of my depression. I have no idea what your mental diagnosis is and the medications you take. Hopefully, your Doctor can help you with this portion of treatment. The best to you.
charlie75

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Hi @charlie75, I know this must seem so very basic … but where would one look to find a CBT group? That sounds to me like a fabulous idea.

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@parus

@sharlynn62 I am 66 and there is nothing anyone else can do. It is up to me. If I cannot use my CBT skills then what else is there? I am 66 and I do not mention the “D” word to anyone. I feel like a leper in society. I surely will get back on track. Currently I lack the desire to even try. Yup, listening to the depression demon. Native Americans left the tribe when they were no longer of value. Welcome to my pitiful world.

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@vllynn

Some helpful suggestions. Thank you for sharing your "tool-box" for dealing with depression.

We all learn from each other. I look forward to hearing from you again.

Teresa

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@jimhd

@seeker70 – I totally connect with what you say, and I know it would be helpful to me to enter a conversation with you. Trouble is, I’m part way through a cold, and I’m just not up to writing or thinking. Give me a couple of days and I’ll try to remember to join in. I’ve been going through a month or so of increased depression, and being sick right now is the pits.

Jim

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Sounds as if you are channeling me. I am 70,and have been diagnosed with dysthymia. I don’t remember when I didn’t have depression & anxiety/panic attacks. I have support via medication, and have 15 years or so and know it will pass, and it does. Not ideal, but knowing and practicing coping mechanisms is what I have in my tool box.

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@jimhd

@seeker70 – I totally connect with what you say, and I know it would be helpful to me to enter a conversation with you. Trouble is, I’m part way through a cold, and I’m just not up to writing or thinking. Give me a couple of days and I’ll try to remember to join in. I’ve been going through a month or so of increased depression, and being sick right now is the pits.

Jim

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I forgot to mention in my last post that another possible tool box item could be access to a distress phone line. Lots of the volunteers
have had personal experience with mental health issues and in any case all are kind and empathetic and ready to listen. If you need to speak to somebody and do not have anyone to call it could be a resource for you. It Is confidential and you do not have to use your real name. How to I know-because I have had mental health issues and was a volunteer for five years .I hope you have this available where you live!
Ainsleigh

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@anniegk

I hear what you are saying. I have had depression and Anxiety for 30 years and in the past was given medication and i pulled out of it. Not anymore. Iam now 72 years old and have not been able to pull out of this depression/anxiety. This depression has been going on for 1 1/2 years. Iam so sick of the anxiety and depression. I also have a heartbeat irregularity that really makes me nervous and anxious. It is also getting worse with age. I have also developed cramping and weakness in my lower legs I go to a doctor and they pour tons of pills on me and PHYSICALLY I feel worse than before. I worry I am having a heart attack. I fear that i will have to be hospitalized for my heart and that they will take me off all my meds cold turkey and that it will cause withdrawals which could also kill me. I have been on 250 mg er Seroquel 1 time a day and Buspar 10 mg 2x a day for over a year and Remeron for 10 years at varous doses. I also take BP Meds Lisinopril and a waterpill and Propanolol. I try to tell my husband about my fears and how i feel but after all these years, he is tired of listening to me. I just feel alone and like Iam circuling the drain. You are not alone. I just want to feel relaxed and tranquil and enjoy .whats left of my life. It is hard to get good mental care in our area. Iam going to my physician. and he sees me every 3 months. I dont feel any support from him. I do have a physchologist i see but i have problems with all the mindfullness, CBT and relaxation etc. In short, iam a mess.

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Sorry for your loss ! Dogs Rock !

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@anniegk

I hear what you are saying. I have had depression and Anxiety for 30 years and in the past was given medication and i pulled out of it. Not anymore. Iam now 72 years old and have not been able to pull out of this depression/anxiety. This depression has been going on for 1 1/2 years. Iam so sick of the anxiety and depression. I also have a heartbeat irregularity that really makes me nervous and anxious. It is also getting worse with age. I have also developed cramping and weakness in my lower legs I go to a doctor and they pour tons of pills on me and PHYSICALLY I feel worse than before. I worry I am having a heart attack. I fear that i will have to be hospitalized for my heart and that they will take me off all my meds cold turkey and that it will cause withdrawals which could also kill me. I have been on 250 mg er Seroquel 1 time a day and Buspar 10 mg 2x a day for over a year and Remeron for 10 years at varous doses. I also take BP Meds Lisinopril and a waterpill and Propanolol. I try to tell my husband about my fears and how i feel but after all these years, he is tired of listening to me. I just feel alone and like Iam circuling the drain. You are not alone. I just want to feel relaxed and tranquil and enjoy .whats left of my life. It is hard to get good mental care in our area. Iam going to my physician. and he sees me every 3 months. I dont feel any support from him. I do have a physchologist i see but i have problems with all the mindfullness, CBT and relaxation etc. In short, iam a mess.

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VERY SORRY FOR YOUR LOSS ! SHE LOOKS LIKE SHE IS HAPPY !

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@jimhd

@seeker70 – I totally connect with what you say, and I know it would be helpful to me to enter a conversation with you. Trouble is, I’m part way through a cold, and I’m just not up to writing or thinking. Give me a couple of days and I’ll try to remember to join in. I’ve been going through a month or so of increased depression, and being sick right now is the pits.

Jim

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I would like to learn more about your coping mechanisms and hope you will share them with us. This morning I spent time being thankful for the good things in my life and that seems to lift my spirits before I have to deal with any daily event that may make me feel sad.

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Were we separated at birth? Your journey is exactly as mine. I experienced a traumatic event when I was 9 years old and have suffered from low-level depression since then with periods of major depressive disorder. I am also now a senior and I'm experiencing the same feelings as you: not looking forward to anything; feeling blah; crying a lot; having anxiety; and the unrelenting fatigue. I wasn't diagnosed until I was forty. I've been on medication since then, but after a while it didn't work anymore and I had to change meds. Recently a psychiatrist gave me samples of a medication to supplement my regular antidepressants. It is named Vraylar and it worked beautifully; I hadn't felt this good in years. However, my insurance would only pay for it for six months. The cost out of my pocket would have been $1300/month after that 6 month period. Now I'm back to where I started. And talk therapy doesn't help at all. This is a brain condition and no amount of talk therapy will change that. It's biological, folks.

You didn't mention what medication you've taken.

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@jimhd

@seeker70 – I totally connect with what you say, and I know it would be helpful to me to enter a conversation with you. Trouble is, I’m part way through a cold, and I’m just not up to writing or thinking. Give me a couple of days and I’ll try to remember to join in. I’ve been going through a month or so of increased depression, and being sick right now is the pits.

Jim

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Soul sisters!  Iron sharpens iron.  And we are better together!

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@parus

@sharlynn62 I am 66 and there is nothing anyone else can do. It is up to me. If I cannot use my CBT skills then what else is there? I am 66 and I do not mention the “D” word to anyone. I feel like a leper in society. I surely will get back on track. Currently I lack the desire to even try. Yup, listening to the depression demon. Native Americans left the tribe when they were no longer of value. Welcome to my pitiful world.

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Thoughtful insight! I am concentrating using the "one thing at a time" and it was very helpful in taking away that overwhelmed feelings of having too much to contend with this morning.

I am also experimenting with, instead of making of list, I am using the backs of my old business/professional cards to write down items that I must do or make decisions about. I accomplished quite a few of them this morning and throwing away the completed card gave me a good feeling. I wonder if anyone else has tried that method of throwing away a completed action instead of crossing the item off on the list?

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@roochie

Were we separated at birth? Your journey is exactly as mine. I experienced a traumatic event when I was 9 years old and have suffered from low-level depression since then with periods of major depressive disorder. I am also now a senior and I'm experiencing the same feelings as you: not looking forward to anything; feeling blah; crying a lot; having anxiety; and the unrelenting fatigue. I wasn't diagnosed until I was forty. I've been on medication since then, but after a while it didn't work anymore and I had to change meds. Recently a psychiatrist gave me samples of a medication to supplement my regular antidepressants. It is named Vraylar and it worked beautifully; I hadn't felt this good in years. However, my insurance would only pay for it for six months. The cost out of my pocket would have been $1300/month after that 6 month period. Now I'm back to where I started. And talk therapy doesn't help at all. This is a brain condition and no amount of talk therapy will change that. It's biological, folks.

You didn't mention what medication you've taken.

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Cymbalta daily, low dose Xanax as needed, no more than once daily.  Magnesium, multiple vitamin and minerals tablet Mindfulness, prayer, meditation.  Church fellowship.  Keeping up friendships with supportive family and friends  Reading, when I can finally sit down and focus.  Listening to positive music.  Getting my feet dirty in the yard once a day.  Knowing I am not alone.

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@jimhd

@seeker70 – I totally connect with what you say, and I know it would be helpful to me to enter a conversation with you. Trouble is, I’m part way through a cold, and I’m just not up to writing or thinking. Give me a couple of days and I’ll try to remember to join in. I’ve been going through a month or so of increased depression, and being sick right now is the pits.

Jim

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Try giving yourself permission to feel sad for a certain amount of time.  Really feel what you feel.  Then, if you need more time, repeat as needed.  Don't let yourself drown my n your sorrow.  We are here for you.  There is hope.

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@roochie

Were we separated at birth? Your journey is exactly as mine. I experienced a traumatic event when I was 9 years old and have suffered from low-level depression since then with periods of major depressive disorder. I am also now a senior and I'm experiencing the same feelings as you: not looking forward to anything; feeling blah; crying a lot; having anxiety; and the unrelenting fatigue. I wasn't diagnosed until I was forty. I've been on medication since then, but after a while it didn't work anymore and I had to change meds. Recently a psychiatrist gave me samples of a medication to supplement my regular antidepressants. It is named Vraylar and it worked beautifully; I hadn't felt this good in years. However, my insurance would only pay for it for six months. The cost out of my pocket would have been $1300/month after that 6 month period. Now I'm back to where I started. And talk therapy doesn't help at all. This is a brain condition and no amount of talk therapy will change that. It's biological, folks.

You didn't mention what medication you've taken.

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Hello @roochie. I understand and agree with your point about talk therapy and it's benefits if one has a chemical imbalance in their brain chemistry. I do think it can be beneficial in combination with medication by helping me, at least, understand where my anxiety comes from and how if I entertain negative thoughts borne of anxiety, it is going to turn into a depressive event. As @mamasitalucita said, mindfulness has really helped me realize when I am seeing bad things happening that are unrealistic and highly unlikely. The realization is usually enough to get my thoughts reordered to not entertain the barrage that one negative thought can become.

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@anniegk

I hear what you are saying. I have had depression and Anxiety for 30 years and in the past was given medication and i pulled out of it. Not anymore. Iam now 72 years old and have not been able to pull out of this depression/anxiety. This depression has been going on for 1 1/2 years. Iam so sick of the anxiety and depression. I also have a heartbeat irregularity that really makes me nervous and anxious. It is also getting worse with age. I have also developed cramping and weakness in my lower legs I go to a doctor and they pour tons of pills on me and PHYSICALLY I feel worse than before. I worry I am having a heart attack. I fear that i will have to be hospitalized for my heart and that they will take me off all my meds cold turkey and that it will cause withdrawals which could also kill me. I have been on 250 mg er Seroquel 1 time a day and Buspar 10 mg 2x a day for over a year and Remeron for 10 years at varous doses. I also take BP Meds Lisinopril and a waterpill and Propanolol. I try to tell my husband about my fears and how i feel but after all these years, he is tired of listening to me. I just feel alone and like Iam circuling the drain. You are not alone. I just want to feel relaxed and tranquil and enjoy .whats left of my life. It is hard to get good mental care in our area. Iam going to my physician. and he sees me every 3 months. I dont feel any support from him. I do have a physchologist i see but i have problems with all the mindfullness, CBT and relaxation etc. In short, iam a mess.

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She is beautiful. I had a dog that looked like her when i was a kid. Is she a boarder Collie?

FB_IMG_1517963764056

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