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I have suffered with depression for 6 years now and i have…

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I have suffered with depression...
I have suffered with depression for 6 years now and i have never been to a doctor or taken any mediction for it. I also suffer from anxeity, panic attacks and can't control my stress levels. I have two small children and find they make my condition worse to the point where i have to put myself in time out to pull myself together. I get overwhelmed and breakdown easily. I don't have the confidence to venture out with them on my own so most of the time we are stuck indoors, it sounds so stupid but i don't feel i can cope anymore, it's all gotten too much.... i don't feel i am a good mum, i find it an effort to interact with my own children, that sounds awful but its true, i thought motherhood would be great but i hate it, i used to be so outgoing and bubbly before i had children, i don't know who i am anymore.
Submitted: 8 years ago.Category: Mental Health
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Answered in 4 hours by:
6/29/2010
Mental Health Professional: Norman M., Principal psychotherapist in private practice. Newspaper contributor, over 2000 satisfied clients on JA replied 8 years ago
Norman M.
Norman M., Principal psychotherapist in private practice. Newspaper contributor, over 2000 satisfied clients on JA
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 2,568
Experience: ADHP(NC), DEHP(NC), ECP, UKCP Registered.
Verified

Hello, and thanks for visiting JA.


I’m sorry to hear that you are feeling so bad just now.


You seem to be suffering from mixed anxiety and depression - depression is causing you to feel bad, and the other part is that your negative thinking about your life situation is just adding to that.


That’s the bad news. The good news is that your life does NOT have to be like this.


Both these things can be dealt with by a combination of proper medication and a course of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. It is a form of therapy that addresses problems in a direct and targeted way and is brief compared with most other therapies.


The first thing you need to do is to see your Doctor – he will give you a full diagnosis and if appropriate, start you on a suitable anti-depressant medication. He will also want to rule out any physical cause of what you are experiencing.


Depression is seen as a chemical imbalance in the brain, just as diabetes is a chemical imbalance in the body. Diabetics take medication to stay well, why shouldn’t you?


Don’t be afraid of taking medication – it could really help turn your whole life around.


Two important issues about this - when you are on medication, you must take it at the correct dose and as prescribed. It is no use missing doses or messing around with the dose.


Secondly, you should know that anti-depressants can take up to 8 weeks from the start of therapy before they begin to show beneficial effects, so it's no use quitting after two weeks.


CBT is based on the fact that what we think in any given situation generates beliefs about, and reactions to that situation, and also cause the behaviour and feelings which flow from those beliefs and reactions.


These ‘automatic thoughts’ are so fast that generally, we are unaware that we have even had them. We call them ANTS (automatic negative thoughts) for short.


If the pattern of thinking we use, or our beliefs about our situation are even slightly distorted, the resulting emotions and actions that flow from them can be extremely negative and unhelpful.


The object of CBT is to identify these ‘automatic thoughts’ then to re-adjust our thoughts and beliefs so that they are entirely realistic and correspond to the realities of our lives, and that therefore, the resulting emotions, feelings and actions we have will be more useful and helpful.

Cognitive therapists do not usually interpret or seek for unconscious motivations but bring cognitions and beliefs into the current focus of attention and through guided discovery encourage clients to gently re-evaluate their thinking.


Therapy is not seen as something “done to” the client. CBT is not about trying to prove a client wrong and the therapist right, or getting into unhelpful debates. Through collaboration, questioning and re-evaluating their views, clients come to see for themselves that there are alternatives and that they can change.


Clients try things out in between therapy sessions, putting what has been learned into practice, learning how therapy translates into real life improvement.


Please visit this website for much more detailed information on CBT:

http://www.rcpsych.ac.uk/mentalhealthinfoforall/treatments/cbt.aspx


If you cannot afford to see a therapist, there are good free CBT based self-help resources here:


http://www.getselfhelp.co.uk/cbtstep1.htm


Make the first step NOW – get an appointment with your Doc, and you can start to get better.


You’ll also find some very good help here:

http://www.depression.com/

Best wishes, NormanM

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Customer reply replied 8 years ago

You didn't tell me anything i didn't already know!! You told me that i'm suffering from anxiety and depression but to be fair that's what i told you!! I need to know what medication i need!! My anxiety and panic attacks don't allow me to go see a doctor, i feel uncomfortable talking to anyone about how i feel and what's going on in my head!

Mental Health Professional: Norman M., Principal psychotherapist in private practice. Newspaper contributor, over 2000 satisfied clients on JA replied 8 years ago
Hello again. You know, and I know, that the only way out of this mess is tosee your Doctor and get the right medication, and I also stand by what I said about CBT.

The real issue is - how can you do it. Lets face it if you don't.you'll not get better, so let's see what might be possible.

Does your Doctor do home visits? If so, arrange one.
Is there someone who could go with you to the Doc who could help you manage your anxiety foer the couple of hours that you need to totally turn your life around?

Think about this - what is the very very worst thing that could happen? Probably a panic attack - so you feel scared - it is not going to kill you! Instead of days and months of anxiety and fear - one short time to the Docs to get it all over and done with. Your feeling scared and anxious already, so it is hardly going to get worse, is it?

Just think of how we spell the word FEAR. It is in fact a False Expectation Appearing Real if you look at each letter in turn.

You owe your kids and yourself a happy life and future - that is a gify that only you can give - please have the courage to do it.

NormanM
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