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.

Dear Depressed Friends,
Depression is a disease that takes away most of our will to do anything. I, also, find it so easy to just sit in my recliner and watch TV and try not to think.
I’m so fortunate to live in a county that provides a program “Senior Renewal” that uses Cognitive Behavior Therapy that helps us learn to interact with others within the program and develops the same skills to use outside of the group and interact with others. I’ve always thought of myself as a extrovert, but my therapist has told me that I’m an introvert. After much thought, I finally agree with her. My introvert personality causes me to feel really deeply, I feel other peoples pain and I get depressed because I want to help them, but I know that isn’t my talent. I’ve recently gone thru several months of depression due to the death of my father several years ago. I was sad and depressed to the point that I didn’t realize that I was sad and depressed. One day, I realized that I was angry with my father for dying and leaving me without him as a friend. I know that anger is part of the grieving process as well as depression. Denial is a strong method of not looking at reality. Once I realized that I was sad and depressed, I was in a position to get past this and became living again. Thank you for taking the time to read my novel of sharing
charlie75

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@parus

I have a millstone around my ankle and at times my neck. I will try some positive input as soon as I can. For now back to my little world of creativity-sort of. Yup, in blah mode. It is not an instant process and I will continue with this process the best I can at the moment.

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@parus — if you have any art you’d like to share as a result of your time in creative mode, we’d always love to see it. I believe our community finds it uplifting. No pressure, however, to do so. 🙂

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@charlie75

Dear Depressed Friends,
Depression is a disease that takes away most of our will to do anything. I, also, find it so easy to just sit in my recliner and watch TV and try not to think.
I’m so fortunate to live in a county that provides a program “Senior Renewal” that uses Cognitive Behavior Therapy that helps us learn to interact with others within the program and develops the same skills to use outside of the group and interact with others. I’ve always thought of myself as a extrovert, but my therapist has told me that I’m an introvert. After much thought, I finally agree with her. My introvert personality causes me to feel really deeply, I feel other peoples pain and I get depressed because I want to help them, but I know that isn’t my talent. I’ve recently gone thru several months of depression due to the death of my father several years ago. I was sad and depressed to the point that I didn’t realize that I was sad and depressed. One day, I realized that I was angry with my father for dying and leaving me without him as a friend. I know that anger is part of the grieving process as well as depression. Denial is a strong method of not looking at reality. Once I realized that I was sad and depressed, I was in a position to get past this and became living again. Thank you for taking the time to read my novel of sharing
charlie75

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@charlie75 I appreciate your sharing your insight into your depression. You are right when you say that anger is part of the grieving process. Sometimes we forget that.

Teresa

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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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@kdo0827

I’m pleased to hear that you have so many activities that you are involved in, that is great.

Teresa

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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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I wish I knew! I did go out today for a good little bit. I feel a bit better, my chest doesn’t feel so heavy. I hate having to get dressed and I just like snuggling up in my chair. I really appreciate those who have reached out to me. I think this group may be what I need.

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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, I just found the Mayo Clinic connect. I was hoping to be able to go to the Mayo clinic fo get a diagnosis but just found out yesterday my insurance won’t pay for anything out of my home state. I’m incredibly frustrated with my health problems which are to blame for my depression, anxiety, irritability and anger. Those emotional symptoms are turned on and off each week or so by my environmental – air allergies. This has been going on for 5 years in a severe form. I’ve moved twice – once out of state and once to the other side of my state, to escape mold allergy. Unfortunately, I have many other allergies – dust is the one that is my new big problem. I developed asthma last month from the dust, but it’s minimally active. Just got on insurance – haven’t worked since September. This week went to 2 new doctors in my new city – which is a small city. The allergist said there’s not much he can do. I left Texas a year and 7 months ago, and when I was there I got allergy skin testing done and took allergy shots for 2 x a week for 7 months, and the shots didn’t help, just made me sick. I went to a new primary care doc yesterday and they are doing more bloodwork than the allergist did. The allergist’s tests came back normal for kidney, liver, and inflammation. The Prim. care doc is doing a whole bunch of other tests for inflammation. I feel sure my brain is under attack because of my chronic fatigue, chronic memory and ADD-like symptoms, and chronic emotional ups and downs. I’m supposed to see a psychiatrist and am waiting for that office to call me and set up an appointment. I am taking Lexapro and the new doc gave me a baby dose of Abilify to try and help with my mood. Some days I don’t need help with my mood, but the allergies will kick in and then I’ll be really depressed and feel like impending doom is coming and that I might not be able to live like this much longer. I am 55 and have a daughter in TX that is on meth and heroine and just turned 20. She might need me someday if she decides to go into rehab, and she’s my only child. I also have elderly parents who would be devastated if I died, so dying is not an option for me. Besides, when I’m feeling normal (every few days), I am happy to be alive and death is not in the back of my mind at all. Thankfully I got a new puppy a few months ago and she is a great support to me as well. I am home bound and bed bound a lot and really need to find people to talk to. I’m hoping there’s someone else out there that can understand this bizarre situation that I’m in. Thanks for reading my long post, hope you are having a good day so far.

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@lisalucier I would be honored to do so. Where is the best place to do this? I know if it were not for doing art work I would surely stay at the bottom of the vortex. My profile picture is one of my most recent. The weather was bitterly cold and being one who loves nature and the creatures dwelling herein I derive a sense of rest with putting how I feel into pictures. I will post this one in its proper format. It started out as a newborn foal alone on a cold day. I finished it w/o snow as it was only cold. When I finished the painting I looked outside to see horizontal snow. I then added the blowing snow to the painting I thought I had finished. Attached is the before the snow version and then when the snow came. Thus the 1st now only exists as a copy. I like this concept. If it helps another then I have succeeded in some way. Here goes…

Before the Snow

After the Snow

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I was once told that depression is anger turned inward…these words came from a long ago therapist that I fired and the nightmare that followed was a frightening experience. I did the right thing. Any input on the depression/anger theory?

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Guilt is a destroyer. I am still endeavoring to destroy the guilt as it rips me apart at times. I have been blamed for many things and my intellect says this member does not have the kind of power some have given me. Make sense?
@hopeful33250 Your statement about blame not belonging to children sure brought tears to my eyes.

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@kdo0827 Kudos to you for breaking camp!!!

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@seeker70 Hello and welcome. I am 66 and also a senior. There was a time that being a senior when young was full of hope. There are days when hope escapes me. I have read several comments today and realize how supportive others have been with each other. I have received insight and also saddens me to see how many are hurting. No one has chosen thus. There is hope even in our pain. There are times I cannot find hope. I am sorry to hear about your daughter. Going through this type of thing is horrific!
Do you blame yourself? I went through this with a child and I still blame myself. I have told my children that parents fail children; children do not fail parents. If I continue in my guilt I am helping no one. I have grandkids and when I see them I see hope.

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@parus

@seeker70 Hello and welcome. I am 66 and also a senior. There was a time that being a senior when young was full of hope. There are days when hope escapes me. I have read several comments today and realize how supportive others have been with each other. I have received insight and also saddens me to see how many are hurting. No one has chosen thus. There is hope even in our pain. There are times I cannot find hope. I am sorry to hear about your daughter. Going through this type of thing is horrific!
Do you blame yourself? I went through this with a child and I still blame myself. I have told my children that parents fail children; children do not fail parents. If I continue in my guilt I am helping no one. I have grandkids and when I see them I see hope.

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Thanks for your reply. Since I was an older mom and my daughter was adopted as a newborn, I stayed at home with her for about 10 years, and she’s a single child. I know I was a good mom, but her parents divorced when she was 7 and she was also really hurt by her biological family not keeping her. She has bipolar, which her birth mother has, so I try not to blame myself too much. I loved her just like I had given birth to her and was a devoted mom. I hardly have any contact with her and miss her terribly. I wonder if all of her mental illness related stuff that I went through with her as a teenager took a toll on me. Thankfully I have my faith in God and that helped me get through. Now, I wonder if all of that had a part to play in my terrible allergy problem that became extreme during that period of time. Anyway, it’s been hard for me to accept that I can’t work, the depression makes you feel like you are “faking” everything and that none of it’s real, this is a delusion but it feels so real! Don’t know how I’m going to survive without an income. I applied for soc. sec. disab. benefit last month but it could be a very long wait and I could be turned down the first or second time, so it could be a couple of years before I got approved, if at all. All of this is a lot to deal with when you are already physically sick and dealing with depression most days. I’m really having to trust God with all this but it’s hard not to obsess sometimes about it. Thanks for sharing about your child. I know I wish I could go back and fix my mistakes, but it might not have been enough. I have asked her to forgive me for my mistakes and told her how much I wanted to be the best mother I could be for her. That was a facebook private message to her, and as usual, I got no response back. At least I can see that she’s alive by looking at her facebook page. I know a lot about depression, it’s been a part of my life since I was little, so I know I have to reach out for support and not isolate myself. I am glad that others are having the courage to reach out on this site, it’s so important.

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Having a difficult day today…my depression has been better for the last three weeks, but it takes so much to maintain any sort of wellness. I use a light box, take meds, do therapy, volunteer, try to get some exercise, and still….there are difficult days, weeks, or even months. Today it is dark and snowing like crazy, and I’m just not doing well, despite doing many of the above activities. Ugh.

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to @trider7140, and everyone on this page. thank you for posting your feelings. i feel the same way. this forum will help you in terms of support, ideas, and comfort! sending you a hug.
i have had major trauma with a son who refused to stay in contact with me. so i just blame myself of course, like we all seem to be doing. this son is bi-polar and he father killed himself. yet i blame myself for all of it. so…none of us on this page are alone. let’s take comfort in that.
and i was always taught that depression is anger turned inward. there are lots of ways to look at that, but everybody i know who suffers from depression also deals with so much anger. i don’t think there are solid answers to anything.
also…yes cognitive therapy helps. i have practiced that and had therapists who specialized in that. i just think each person is too unique to really know what works.

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@parus

I was once told that depression is anger turned inward…these words came from a long ago therapist that I fired and the nightmare that followed was a frightening experience. I did the right thing. Any input on the depression/anger theory?

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@parus

I’ve heard the same line about anger, but I don’t know if I agree with it. Maybe it’s true for some people. I think it’s way too simplistic.

I don’t think there’s any one answer for the depression question. I don’t even know what really caused me to be depressed. Traumatic events. Brain chemistry. Being a sensitive person. Wanting to make people happy. Guilt and shame that I didn’t deserve, for the most part.

But why is the person I meet on the street depressed? Does it have anything to do with anger toward themselves or is it anger someone else directs toward them?

Who can say?

I know that some things are usually accompanied by depression – anxiety, PTSD, chronic pain, stress.

I had a long session with the therapist today. I wanted to talk with him about, among other things, the effect of PTSD on my depression. I needed to talk about it, but it wasn’t easy. He talked with me about going on living when I’m in the dark hole. Right now I feel stuck and not sure I want to go on. Sorry. Not a very helpful thing to say when I’m supposed to be a helper in the group.

Tomorrow will be another day.

Jim

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