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Old 01-23-2019, 12:42 PM   #1
Madelaina
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Default Could use some encouragement

Hi everyone,

New to the forum, only registered yesterday just for the psychotherapy subforum but now I feel like posting here because I had such a bad day and maybe some encouraging words by strangers online can help

I (w/38) am currently in a depressive episode and it takes longer than I expected...going in on two months now.

I started going back on Lexapro 4 weeks ago, I am going to my therapist (we wanted to get off the meds but I just want to do everything i can right now to get better). She has been on vacation while I slipped so I only had a few sessions since I am in this depression.

She tells me to be self compassionate, patient, and to not believe all these terrible fears about not getting better, not being able to live life the way I want to etc

Yesterday, she told me to look beneath the symptoms - to listen kindly to myself and understand what makes me so sad and desperate.
Buried and unresolved feelings... Just hearing her say this touches me so deeply. Like she hit a nerve.

I cry a lot more during these last days (at the beginning of the episode I cried a lot too and then I cry less but feel worse..)

And today during work, I noticed the tension in the body and the effort to act normal, and as soon as I left, I started crying and cannot stop now.
It's like such a big wave of sadness washing over me again.

I don't know if this is good because it means I am "cleansing" myself a bit...but I am also scared I will never get over this.
Every time I have a better day, I am so disappointed when the next one is bad again.

I don't know what else to do though. I am going to therapy, taking the meds, trying to get on with life. Working is a challenge but I manage. I meditate and try to do relaxation exercises..
And I feel like I am hopeless because the depression hasn't lifted yet.

Sorry for the long text... guess I just needed to vent!
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Old 01-23-2019, 07:47 PM   #2
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I'm sorry you are continuing to struggle. From what you wrote, it sounds as though you're doing a lot of things right. Perhaps reaping the benefits of all this is simply a matter of continuing to do all you are doing for some additional time? Here are links to 4 articles, from Psych Central's archives, that address the issue of depression & hopelessness:

A Real Dose of Hope When You're Feeling Hopeless

Depression and the Chinese Finger Trap

How I Fought My Depression and Found Inner Peace

My Journey to Wholeness: How I Learned to Embrace My Flaws to Create a Joyful Life

My best wishes to you...
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Old 01-24-2019, 12:24 AM   #3
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Hi Madelaina, and welcome to PC.

Well, you're doing all the right things in addressing your depression and that's very positive, it can only be a good thing. So, big hugs to you and really well done!

Yes, therapy isn't the easiest process to experience either, but again it's a positive step and has, I believe, begun to unlock some buried emotions in you. That's why you're finding yourself quite emotional at unexpected times. I've had therapies and the counselors always stated that it may bring up some feelings during the day - which it did, yes. I'm not sure how long those episodes will continue for you, but my thoughts are that they will stop happening eventually - when things begin to resolve themselves more.

Hey, you're doing really well, Madelaina. Battle forth and stay strong. Yes, self love & nurturing. Keep reaching out as well, if you like.
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Old 01-24-2019, 05:18 AM   #4
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Thank you so much for your kind replies, Skeezyks and mote.of.soul.


I really hope I am doing enough..and this is so typical for my personality that I always put myself under pressure...even in the depression I feel like I need to push myself more.
I feel like I am not doing the exercises/techniques well enough (not believing the negative thoughts etc) because I dont feel instant relief like "aah now those thoughts dont scare me anymore")..
But if it was that easy we d all just have to hear once how not to believe your thoughts and everyone would be fine I guess.


@skeezyks: will read the links, thank you. Have read so much about depression and ways to heal so far but it always helps to read comforting things.


@mote.of.soul: If my episodes and periods of being sad vanished more or less would be amazing. To resolve underlying issues and fears for good sounds like a dream but I cannot believe it right now.
The whole "nothing will work for me" mentality catches up with me sometimes but I know this is just depression and negatvitiy talking.


I just have a lot of underlying huge fear that I will never get out of such a slump and no one knows how to help and that i have to try various strong meds and will never be ok again etc.. ever since I have bad phases this fear shows up. Living an independent life full of freedom is my number one priority so I guess this is where the anxiety that this.could be taken from me comes from.
And sometimes I also fear that my brain is so messed up from taking lexapro on and off that it has forgotten how to be in balance...I should stay away from online horror stories!
My doctors and therapist have all said the brain can recover so well.
I hope that it is a good sign that I can still work and concentrate (and speak English..I am German..)

which means my brain is still somewhat intact.


I wish I could deal with these fears and better trust myself and therefore not panick as much when I am in a depressive phase.


Rambling on...thanks for reading.
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Old 01-24-2019, 04:06 PM   #5
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Hi Madelaina, I am sorry you are feeling bad. You sound a little like me. Rationally, I know all about depression and how it can twist your thoughts and what you can do to help, but, boy, it's hard to remember when you are feeling down! But you have gotten better before and you will again. Great big hug from Colorado.
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Old 01-24-2019, 04:13 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Madelaina View Post

...I just have a lot of underlying huge fear that I will never get out of such a slump and no one knows how to help and that i have to try various strong meds and will never be ok again etc.. ever since I have bad phases this fear shows up. Living an independent life full of freedom is my number one priority so I guess this is where the anxiety that this.could be taken from me comes from.
And sometimes I also fear that my brain is so messed up from taking lexapro on and off that it has forgotten how to be in balance...I should stay away from online horror stories!
My doctors and therapist have all said the brain can recover so well.
I hope that it is a good sign that I can still work and concentrate (and speak English..I am German..)

which means my brain is still somewhat intact.


I wish I could deal with these fears and better trust myself and therefore not panick as much when I am in a depressive phase.


Rambling on...thanks for reading.

Yes, I can certainly understand those fears and worries, for sure. Hang in there, though, there is a good chance you'll come through it. The reason I say that is because I've read posts by people on this site and other sites, stating that they've made a recovery from depression & anxiety and now they feel happier[!] Can you believe that? But apparently it's true, yes. So, Madelaina, there is hope for you - I do believe that.

I myself still struggle with depression and anxiety but that doesn't mean everybody has to. One 'tool' I use to cope, though, is mindfulness. Have you heard of it? I've found it to be a good way to help me get through the day. There is a lot of information on the internet about it.

Hey, it'll be okay, Madelaina, don't you worry. Sending out good vibes to you.
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Old 01-24-2019, 05:02 PM   #7
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Hi Monticello,
Hugs back!
And yes, exactly! Rationally, I know everything. I know all the techniques and tricks and things you should do...but it just feels so bad and there is always that little voice of "what if it doesn't work for me".
What do you do to shut that voice up and to try to really internalize your rational knowledge?



@mote.of.soul:
Sorry to hear you're struggling as well.
Oh and a question because I often read this in English but not so much in German:
lots of people say they have depression AND anxiety. For me, anxiety is a symptom of the depression. As opposed to a specific anxiety disorder (like panic disorder or the one where you worry all the time but for years, or social anxiety).
So I wonder if this is just a term that English native speakers use because depression often has anxiety with it, or do people more use it when they have really both diagnosis?
Just a thought because I noticed people often not only say they have depression (which is enough as it is) but also say anxiety - which again, to me, is more like a symptom and would be like listing "i have depression and loss of appetite, and insomnia and low mood".


I like my therapist's approach. She is not too big on the psychiatric diagnosis. She says "yes, the symptoms are there, so call it depression, but what matters to me is the person and why they are in this state and how they can get better".
She doesn't like to make everything pathological.

Anyway, what you say about people recovering and feeling happier sounds like a dream. For me, it is not the first episode though, and in the last few years (due to stress and not being satisfied with private life etc) I had a lot of rough patches and it has made me lose a lot of trust in myself. So I need to work on that.
But hey, there is always the chance this could be the last really bad episode that shows me what I really need and also that I really need to take care of myself and learn to not ignore the first signs.


Mindfullness: thank you! I have read a lot about it. The book "mindful way through depression"..I discovered it in 2013 and thought it could be my holy grail.
For some reason, I never really stuck to a regular practice. Well, when I am doing well I just don't bother.
And I guess that's why I thought "it doesn't work as well as it should".
I still try to integrate it and have started meditating again and try to use it when the moment seems overwhelming.
I guess I also just expect too many results too fast.
Definitely a useful tool and to me the most pragmatic way of dealing with it all. Like it way better than classic CBT exercises.
I also like the ACT approach. The book "the happiness trap" is also really good.
It is just frustrating that I have read so much and know so much about all these tricks, yet I struggle to really implement them or at least I feel like I am not doing it well enough when I am in the middle of the depression.


Wish you all the best for your recovery too!
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Old 01-24-2019, 09:07 PM   #8
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Thanks very much, Madelaina. Much appreciated!

Regarding the 'depression and anxiety':

Quote:
...So I wonder if this is just a term that English native speakers use because depression often has anxiety with it, or do people more use it when they have really both diagnosis?
Just a thought because I noticed people often not only say they have depression (which is enough as it is) but also say anxiety - which again, to me, is more like a symptom and would be like listing "i have depression and loss of appetite, and insomnia and low mood".
I'm not sure if it is a term used only by English speakers, Madelaina, but I think some people may say 'depression & anxiety' together, because they have either been diagnosed with one or both of those things or because they may simply feel that those two things are problems in their lives - regardless of a diagnosis. That's my opinion. Me, personally, I've been diagnosed with both and usually mention them together because, for me, like you, one is giving rise to the other. But for me my social anxiety is coming first which then hammers me psychologically and forms the depression. That's what I observe in myself.

Yes, same here: I prefer the mindfulness over CBT as well - though I can't help but try to utilize CBT tactics when struggling - grasping at everything, so to speak.

Yes, I feel your struggles and frustrations as well, Madelaina, and I wish I had an all-encompassing answer for us all (((Hugs!))). But I think just carry on trying to remain positive and keep the mind open to anything that may help. [I know it's not a suggested thing but I even smoke a few cigarettes to alleviate me. I don't care.]

Peace & love!
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Old 01-25-2019, 06:42 AM   #9
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Default Re: Could use some encouragement

this forum will always be here for when you need it, Madelaina.

so glad you reached out.

(((((hugs))))
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Old 01-25-2019, 07:40 AM   #10
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Welcome! I am a firm believer in crying. I dont know if its cleansing but I do feel relief when I have a good cry. I am bipolar and I learned that my depressive cycles will not last forever no matter how bad they feel. I had to learn to give myself permission to be sad. Sometimes there is no reason for it, its my brain and its chemical imbalance. I dont have to have a reason. Sometimes when I feel it welling up from the deep I will put on my sentimental playlist and cry and cry...it helps.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Madelaina View Post
Hi everyone,

New to the forum, only registered yesterday just for the psychotherapy subforum but now I feel like posting here because I had such a bad day and maybe some encouraging words by strangers online can help

I (w/38) am currently in a depressive episode and it takes longer than I expected...going in on two months now.

I started going back on Lexapro 4 weeks ago, I am going to my therapist (we wanted to get off the meds but I just want to do everything i can right now to get better). She has been on vacation while I slipped so I only had a few sessions since I am in this depression.

She tells me to be self compassionate, patient, and to not believe all these terrible fears about not getting better, not being able to live life the way I want to etc

Yesterday, she told me to look beneath the symptoms - to listen kindly to myself and understand what makes me so sad and desperate.
Buried and unresolved feelings... Just hearing her say this touches me so deeply. Like she hit a nerve.

I cry a lot more during these last days (at the beginning of the episode I cried a lot too and then I cry less but feel worse..)

And today during work, I noticed the tension in the body and the effort to act normal, and as soon as I left, I started crying and cannot stop now.
It's like such a big wave of sadness washing over me again.

I don't know if this is good because it means I am "cleansing" myself a bit...but I am also scared I will never get over this.
Every time I have a better day, I am so disappointed when the next one is bad again.

I don't know what else to do though. I am going to therapy, taking the meds, trying to get on with life. Working is a challenge but I manage. I meditate and try to do relaxation exercises..
And I feel like I am hopeless because the depression hasn't lifted yet.

Sorry for the long text... guess I just needed to vent!
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