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Dr. Z
Dr. Z, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 4862
Experience:  Psy.D. in Clinical Forensic Psychology with a background in treating severe mental illnesses.
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I think I have been needing therapy for a while now but I dont

Resolved Question:

I think I have been needing therapy for a while now but I don't know if it will really help. I've never talked to anyone about what's gone on with me these past few years, but it's getting to the point that i cant let it go and move on. it is effecting me way too much. I have been on depression medication before....But quit only after a few weeks. I believe I will always be on and off these moods though. I can't remember the last time I was truly happy.
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Mental Health
Expert:  Dr. Z replied 10 months ago.

Dr. Z :

Hello

Dr. Z :

I believe I can help you with your concern

Dr. Z :

I am sorry that you have been experiencing these symptoms, I can imagine how distressing it is for you

Dr. Z :

Would you mind telling me a little bit more about your mood issues and what is bothering you specifically?

Customer: I'm almost always sad. Sometimes it gets to the point that I just sit in my room especially on the weekends when I don't have to be somewhere and I'll literally do nothing but sleep and lay there thinking about how much I don't like my life....it sounds pathetic but...I've just been through a lot. And i honestly don't know if I can get past it. I feel like its never gonna go away or I'll never feel happy again...
Dr. Z :

I am so sorry that you are feeling this way, I can tell that you are definitely in pain from what I read

Customer: It's been going on for years now
Customer: The thing is I'm in the military and I can't exactly get help without being kicked out
Dr. Z :

Is that why you discontinued the anti-depressant medication?

Customer: I only just came into it a few months ago...no I stopped a little over a yr ago
Customer: zoloft
Dr. Z :

You mentioned that you have been going through a lot, is this in addition to your symptoms?

Customer: When I was 16 my father molested me. My mom knows and is still with him to this day. I have 2 brothers who have also touched me but I didn't tell anyone. One did the night before I left for basic. I met this guy and fell in love. Moved out of my family's home and was better than i had been in a while. But right after moving in with him he became physically and mentally abusive. I lived with him for about a yr. couldn't get away. My family knew what was going on but wouldnt help me. my family also likes to live with blinders on and act like life is perfect...forgive and forget is what they tell me all the time. but i cant forget. i feel like somethings wrong with me. used the military as a way to get away from the people in my life....but my head and my heart aren't letting me get away like I want to. Suicidal thoughts are on and off too....I just want all of it to stop. I want to be happy. But my life just...hasn't gone as planned. And I've never felt so alone.
Customer: I sound ridiculous. I'm embarrassed.
Dr. Z :

I am so sorry that you had to endure all this abuse and pain in your life for so long. I can understand your feelings of being alone with no family support there to help you. I think what you are going through is called Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). And I know you are familiar with it, being in the military, but the emotional, physical, and verbal abuse that you suffered can trigger it too.

Dr. Z :

You have nothing to be embarrassed about at all. You went through some serious traumas since you were younger and this takes a toll on anyones psyche.

Dr. Z :

I can show you some good techniques to help you through this, but I also think seeing a therapist will help you process it too.

Customer: I've looked up PTSD....do u think what I have is a very mild version?
Customer: It's hard to believe for me, that something is rly wrong with me. I don't want to believe it..
Dr. Z :

Well with the suicidal thoughts that come and go, I would not call it Mild. Also these symptoms are effecting you greatly too, so I would put it at Moderate to Severe.

Dr. Z :

Why do you not want to believe it?

Customer: I need something to help
Customer: It just makes me feel like a big baby or I'm over emotional...nobody in my family or few friends I've confided in get it
Dr. Z :

Sure I would like to teach you some Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) techniques to help you. This is the best modality of therapy to treat PTSD. CBT has a premise that your symptoms are caused by negative thoughts, so if we change your thought process to be more positive and objective as well, then your symptoms will lessen.

Dr. Z :

No you are not a big baby at all!! This is a serious disorder, but it can be cured and you can take control of it. These emotions do not have to control you at all

Customer: I will do what I can...do some research, I'll do anything
Dr. Z :

So this link may help you, it contains a technique I use with patients called a thought record. It will help you keep track of any negative thoughts you have. You put the negative thought on paper, the emotion accompanying, the evidence to support it, and the evidence against it. Then I want you to come up with an alternative thought for the situation (more objective and plausible). This will help you change your way of thinking to be able to think more positive and not automatically go to a negative type of thinking.

Dr. Z :

In addition, these two worksheets are very good at helping lessen PTSD symptoms. It can help you focus on the big picture and the objective/positive thoughts and outcomes.

Dr. Z :

Also individuals with PTSD have a poor coping mechanism, so this worksheet will help you develop a better coping strategy to manage your symptoms better.

Customer: Thank you so much
Dr. Z :

In addition, you may have self-critical thoughts that you are focusing on, so this technique can help you replace those self-critical thoughts with more positive self beliefs

Dr. Z :

Hold on real quick, I still have some more techniques for you

Dr. Z :

And these three books can help too

Dr. Z :

So these are some things that you can do in the privacy of your own home to help you.

Dr. Z :

Now for the supplements, the St. Johns Wort is very effective, also Omega-3, Glutamate, and Valerian root can be added to use to treat your symptoms.

Dr. Z :

For medication, the use of an SSRI antidepressant, I would recommend Lexapro at 10-20mg in combination with the use of benzodiazepine (e.g Ativan, Xanax, and Klonopin) are effective in managing symptoms of PTSD.

Dr. Z :

I think this is a good start for you and I wanted to give you best information possible to take control of this

Customer: I'll have to do what I can without going on an antidepressant...thank You very much for your time and listening. It's really appreciated... :)
Dr. Z :

No problem, I just wanted to add the medication there just in case. But the supplements and the techniques work really well.

Dr. Z :

I wish you the best of luck and I am happy that I was able to help you tonight. My goal is to provide you with excellent service, so if you ever have any further questions or concerns please do not hesitate to contact me at anytime.

Dr. Z, Psychologist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 4862
Experience: Psy.D. in Clinical Forensic Psychology with a background in treating severe mental illnesses.
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