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.

@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…

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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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@parus

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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@parus

I’m glad that it helped! Yes, children are never responsible for adult problems – period!

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

It sounds like you are doing a lot to counteract depression. We attend church on Sunday morning, and I lead worship and play the piano in the evening service. I was a volunteer for hospice for several years, visiting patients. I resigned from hospice because they made new guidelines and wanted me to have my service dog trained as a therapy dog. The two types of dogs are very different, and I need to keep Sadie as my service dog. I still visit one woman every Monday, and celebrated her 104th birthday with her today.

I’ve been taking Wellbutrin for 12 years and added Remeron a couple of months ago. I also take Klonopin for anxiety. My mental health fell apart in ’05. I’d been taking antidepressants for a few years, but I crashed and attempted suicide a number of times and was down in a very deep, very dark hole by the end of ’05. I spent November and December in a facility, and the following October I retired at 56. It took several years to get out of the hole, and by now I’m in a better, safer place. I’m sorry that I’ve put my wife through some rough times. I wish I could say I’m all better, but I know I still have a way to go.

Jim

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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, @jess123

Sorry for all of the frustration you’ve been experiencing. I hope your new doctors will be more helpful. Allergies are no fun at all. We live in Oregon, and moved out of the Willamette Valley 20 years ago, where it rains all the time and mold and mildew were disabling us. We live in central Oregon, which is high desert, with only around 15 inches of precipitation annually. Our allergies are way better, but then there are other things like sage brush. I don’t think there’s a place that’s allergen free.

I’m just getting over a nasty cold that my wife had last week. I’m looking forward to having some energy again. I need to finish taking down the Christmas lights outside, and at the same time clean gutters. I’ve put off the gutter cleaning for way too long.

Time for bed. Look forward to hearing more from you.

Jim

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