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Old 02-17-2009, 01:31 AM   #1
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mowgli HB User
depression monster.

Hi guys. I was hoping for some words of wisdom.
About 3 weeks ago I lost my job, for no reason that I can concieve other than a lack of brown-nosing skills (for want of another term). There was no warning, no being told at any point that I had crossed any lines by the management that sacked me; I had at one point dealt with an issue badly and had my immediate boss point it out to me, but at this point I was already on my way down the path of diagnosis and medication. Since that point I kept in contact with her on my behaviour and was constantly told how well I was doing. I loved my job- it had it's problems, in fact it triggered the episode which led to my diagnosis, but I loved the other workers and I loved the work I did. I was sacked for "lack of performance", which I know was not true- Customers send in letters of commendation.
So at first I was so angry and hurt, but could see that it wasn't all bad- I would have more time with the kids and at home.. which is what I really want over and above everything else. However I have done absolutley stuff all in the last 2 weeks. I started out well- I even got the camping gear out of a three year storage. Since then though I've crashed.
I can't stand to be around my kids- I have a spectacular shortage of patience with them. I have no appetite, and when I do eat I feel sick, I have had diarreah 3 times in the past month, I've been drinking and smoking (dope) every night, even though I had this under some sort of control before- I've lost it. I'm up so late and sleep nearly all day. I find myself wanting to hurt myself- and doing it. I'm never home it seems, and when I am I can't do anything- the house looks like it's been ransacked.
I'm still taking my medication for what it's worth, though I think the lithium is causing the diarreah, and I don't like the anti-depressant.
So now I find myself in a place where I feel betrayed and useless. I'm at a loss with life, and at a loss with why. I could leave it all behind one way or another and not bat an eyelid. My children used to be enough, but now there are times when they're not.
I talked to my psychiatrist today and he tells me that I am depressed (really?? hadn't noticed.) and not to drink and smoke (I know this...), and that the work thing has caused it.
I have been here before, and no doubt I will be again; my problem right now is getting my headspace back again. So this is where the words of wisdom come into it...
Any one got any?

Last edited by mowgli; 02-17-2009 at 01:35 AM. Reason: oops.

 
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Old 02-17-2009, 10:29 AM   #2
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Re: depression monster.

My advice tends to be either metaphysical, spiritual, esoteric and/or weird so bear with me. First, it's an illness. It's not you. We'll all probably agree on that. The trouble from second to second is that the tool with which we perceive the illness is the tool affected by the illness. Aint that a *****? So no matter well you do with altering your perception to either realizing its an illness or putting it in some kind of perspective, your ability to perceive is handicapped. So, in order to be able to at least feel as if you have SOME faculties with which to combat this illness, you need to get that physical health straightened out. If you are dissatisfied with the doctor or the meds, make it known or find someone else who will listen. Try to establish what are facts and what are feelings. Do you truly hate your kids or do you feel that way due to current circumstances. Perception CAN be healed. That is the good news. A lot of it can be done with some rigorous internal work on your part. You have to fight for control of your mind. And a good fighter knows when to lose and when to win. Acknowledge when you're down and out but dont necessarily make the logical jump to feeling you have to do something about it. Every state of mind you're in is valid. And any random act is better than harming or killing yourself. Get a tattoo. Shave your head. Paint a picture. Who cares? Every second breathing presents countless options. The pain only lasts as long as we let our minds keep their grip on the bad stuff. Thats my best for now. Hope it helps.

John

 
Old 02-17-2009, 08:21 PM   #3
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Re: depression monster.

i am not a doctor.

but, it seems like you might get some benefit by either changing your anti-depressant or upping the one your on.

what amount of lithium are you on? have you had your lithium levels checked lately?

hope this helps. oh, and you know its not you, so be patient. don't do anything drastic - there is more you can do.

best of luck
kathy

ps i upped my celexa 20 mg and lowered my lithium 300 mg and it made the biggest difference. just stay within the lithium levels.

 
Old 02-17-2009, 09:47 PM   #4
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Re: depression monster.

First off, a doctor I am not. We all know that the first rule of BP is that we do not take an Anti-Depressant without an Anti-Psychotic or Mood Stabilizer. Your Lithium does not seem to be working. Your pdoc does not seem to be working. Perhaps it's time to change both of them? There are tons of meds out there that they could use that might actually help you. As for the drinking and smoking, that's going to be your deal, if you really want to be better, then you have to stop. You never mentioned a husband or signifant other in your post, are you doing this on your own? If so, then it makes it doubly hard, but you can do it. Being a strong female, you can do it. Right now the priority is to get yourself regulated and as mentally stable as possible, then worry about looking for a new job. I know it seems like you have a ton on your plate and you're totally out of control. But if your meds were correct and you had a decent pdoc, I think you'd be amazed at how much better you felt. So please think about it, and decide whether you want to be "better" or the same, and get a game plan and go from there. Stay in contact with us and let us know how you are doing, we have not problem giving advice or being a sounding board, whichever you need. I genually hope that you get yourself better.

Kat

 
Old 02-20-2009, 12:58 AM   #5
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Re: depression monster.

Thanks for your advice all of you. I did try to reply the other night- I was nearly finished and accidently hit a button and lost the lot! So I thought I would try again later.
So it turns out that it was illegal for my employer to sack me the way they did, so I'm back at work (for now). I have meetings and things on Tuesday with the bosses who sacked me, but I have someone coming to advocate for me- which will help heaps.
I had an appointment with my pdoc today. It was probably the best yet. I am going to get my lithium levels checked on Monday, and he has changed my anti-depressant from Esipram to Cymbalta for various reasons (diarreah, s/h and stuff, chronic jaw clenching, and I wasn't happy being on an SSRI in the first place.), and gave me some 25mg of seroquel to take during the day if my head gets the better of me on top of the 100mg I take of a night. I also spoke to him about going back to see my tdoc (I started this journey going to see her for counselling and was referred to my pdoc when I started yelling at her.), his opinion was that I should wait til I was more stable (the gov't here will help pay for 8 sessions at a time then you have to apply again) and could get more from it, but I'm thinking just getting stuff out of my head might help- what has been the experience of the people on this board? I don't want to waste the sessions because I have funny ideas in my head- I think I do have a squewiffy view on things at the moment.
Thanks for reminding me that the depression is not me- I'd forgotten.

p.s. I don't really hate my kids- it's just when I'm down and majorly tense and any noise grates- 3 noisy, rambunctious kids (especially fighting ones) really are more than I deal with- it's more my lack of patience and that I'm not well enough to give them the fullness of my parenting that I hate; and yes I have a beautiful partner who I couldn't do without, which makes the difference.

 
Old 02-20-2009, 08:34 AM   #6
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NutshellNutter HB User
Re: depression monster.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mrwilkey View Post
My advice tends to be either metaphysical, spiritual, esoteric and/or weird so bear with me. First, it's an illness. It's not you. We'll all probably agree on that. The trouble from second to second is that the tool with which we perceive the illness is the tool affected by the illness. Aint that a *****? So no matter well you do with altering your perception to either realizing its an illness or putting it in some kind of perspective, your ability to perceive is handicapped. So, in order to be able to at least feel as if you have SOME faculties with which to combat this illness, you need to get that physical health straightened out. If you are dissatisfied with the doctor or the meds, make it known or find someone else who will listen. Try to establish what are facts and what are feelings. Do you truly hate your kids or do you feel that way due to current circumstances. Perception CAN be healed. That is the good news. A lot of it can be done with some rigorous internal work on your part. You have to fight for control of your mind. And a good fighter knows when to lose and when to win. Acknowledge when you're down and out but dont necessarily make the logical jump to feeling you have to do something about it. Every state of mind you're in is valid. And any random act is better than harming or killing yourself. Get a tattoo. Shave your head. Paint a picture. Who cares? Every second breathing presents countless options. The pain only lasts as long as we let our minds keep their grip on the bad stuff. Thats my best for now. Hope it helps.

John
John,
I've got to say I've read alot of posts on this board, written alot too, and have had years of therapy of all sorts - but this, this one paragraph alone beats them all - truely fantastic, insightful words of wisdom... WELL DONE!!

Nut.

 
Old 02-20-2009, 10:59 AM   #7
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wilkdawg HB User
Re: depression monster.

Nut and friends,

"Happiness is not an individual matter. When you are able to bring relief, or bring back the smile to one person, not only that person profits, but you also profit. The deepest happiness you can have comes from that capacity to help relieve the suffering of others. So if we have the habit of being peace, then there is a natural tendency for us to go in the direction of service. Nothing compels us, except the joy of sharing peace, the joy of sharing freedom from afflictions, freedom from worries, freedom from craving, which are the true foundations of happiness." - Thich Nhat Hanh

Why did I post that, you ask? First, I was rendered speechless for a moment as your post reminded me not only that I can do some good in the world but that it can come back to me when I need it most. Im apart from my soulmate still, because I had an episode that scared and hurt her. Im just eekin by lately. I needed to be reminded of something good about me. Thank you from my heart.

John

 
Old 02-20-2009, 09:04 PM   #8
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katlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB Userkatlin09 HB User
Re: depression monster.

Mowgli,

I am so glad you've gotten your job back and that you will have advocation. In the USA we have a law called, "The Americans With Disabilities Act" and it covers people with BP, so that in this country you cannon be dismissed from a place of employment for having BiPolar.

As for your kids, I really do understand. There are times when my depression gets so bad that I just lock myself in my room and generally ignore my son, as bad as that sounds. I recently adopted a cat who came from an animal rescue shelter so that he would have someone to play with in the evenings if I'm not able to get out of my room. My pdoc and tdoc always tell me to force myself to "go trough the motions" whether I feel like getting up or not....but that is so hard.

It sounds like you are definitely on the right track. I am really glad that you have a great partner to be your support system, that has to make is somewat easier, and comforting.

Let us know how your meeting goes, and if you need to vent, we're hear.

kat

 
Old 02-20-2009, 11:06 PM   #9
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Re: depression monster.

We have anti-discrimination laws too, but I got my job back because I am on a traineeship, which is a contract for two years and can't be change in anyway except by mutual agreement. But I will be finding out the best way to handle the BP situation with my bosses so I'm covered in the future.
How old is your son Kat? Mine are 15 (girl), 12 (girl), and 7 (boy). I was on my own when the two oldest were 3 and 6ish and on and off since then, and I have spent the majority of that time (and before) battling depression, and have been emotionally inaccessable- or asleep, for so, so much of that time, and you would think that my kids would major horrors as a result. They are the opposite. They have their moments, they wouldn't be kids if they didn't. My kids are incredibly sensitive, helpful and go out of their way to help people when they can see it's needed. They have an awesome sense of responsibilty- there is the odd stuff up, but that's growing and learning. They have all received certificates at school for their caring.
I guess what I'm saying is, so long as your son is safe it will be ok. If you can get up and go through the motions (sometimes you have to fake it to make it) then do, but I know myself there are times you can't. I had to jump in the car the other night and go for a drive to calm down when my kids were narking and wouldn't listen to me when I tried to send them to their rooms- sometimes they don't need to see you how you are. I just make sure that I make extra effort to take advantage of those situations when the conditions are good, and make doubly sure they know how much I love them.
Mr. Wilkie, your advice is timely indeed. One of my biggest downfalls is that my head will grab a thought and be like a dog worrying a bone. You also backed up a concept I had just read in a book the other night. To let thoughts come into my and wash through, letting them go away again- instead of grabbing them just coz they are there and obsessing.
...and thank you for what you wrote before, it did help.

 
Old 02-20-2009, 11:16 PM   #10
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Re: depression monster.

Mowgli,

I have 2 sons, youngest is 10, oldest is 18. I've been married 20 years and just seperated from my husband in October. My youngest lives with me, and the oldest stayed with is dad, because he's a volunteer firefighter and needed to be in his district. There aren't too many times that I have to worry about my son, he's very responsible, compassionate, smart and dependable. And now that it's just the two of us, if I'm having a bad day and don't feel like getting out of bed, he just gets in my bed with me, and does his homework, or reads to me, or watches a movie, etc. He's a very sweet and well behaved child, I rarely worry about him. My BP and SH/SI just became severe again last dec. 08, when my brain decided to "unlock" and let me remember all of the trauma and molestation and abuse from my childhood that I had blocked out. So my boys have only had to deal with this for a year. My oldest son of course knows whats wrong, since he and I have talked about it in detail, but my 10 yr old just thinks mommy is not well right now, and I'll get better with medicine. I've had 20 operations in the last 10 years, his lifetime, so he's used to me being down and out for long periods of time.

kat

 
Old 03-04-2009, 07:53 PM   #11
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Re: depression monster.

Sorry I haven't replied, I have just spent the past 2 weeks in hospital and didn't have access to a computer.
I'm sorry to hear about your brain unlocking on you- they do that you realise; rotten things. At the oddest times too. I was feeling like I was starting to get in a place where I could get my stuff together- and wham! Down I go like a sack of you know what!! It makes it hard to feel good and make progress when your body and mind are seemingly off on their own agendas. But if you have managed to deal with all those operations in such a short time I reckon you must be made of pretty stern stuff.
I am glad to hear that you have things sorted with your boys. Having your youngest jump in bed with you and spend time is so cool. That's what my girls used to do, I miss it now they are bigger.
So just thought I had better let you lot know that I hadn't really dropped off the face of the planet!

 
Old 03-04-2009, 09:14 PM   #12
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Re: depression monster.

Mowgli,

Sorry to hear that you were In Patient, but if it helped, I guess it was worth it. Are you doing better these days? I've been very stressed/depressed as I lost my job last week, so it's been a bit rough, but managing to muddle through some how, a day at a time I guess. I was sacked for bogus reasons, so I'm going to have to contact an attorney and go through all that crap, and really not sure I have it in me right now to deal with it. I won't/can't go back to work at the place I was at, but perhaps some kind of settlement can be met.

How are your girls getting on? Where they okay while you were in hospital? I know how rough it can be when you're worrying about your kids at home while your in. Last time I was in, last July, I couldn't get my kids out of my mind, and worried constantly that my youngest would find out why I was really there. We just told him I was sick, and here on the psych ward there's only one phone in the common room so the phone conversations are very short and not very private.

Well now that I've written way too much, I'll cut it off.

Good to see you back.

kat

 
Old 03-04-2009, 11:19 PM   #13
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Re: depression monster.

That's a bummer that you lost your job- I can soooooooo empathise there! It get's me the way some employers think they have no responsibility to you as a person. If you don't go and see an attorney I may chose make my first trip out of Australia and boot your bum for you. Don't let them get away with it- even if you only get some money as settlement, you will need it.

Being IP was the best thing that could have happened for me. Gave me time to get things in perspective and for my brain to drop back a few gears. I actually only felt anxious about three times in there (badly, though mind you by the time I got home I had to have a valium and then later a mini seoquel). And most importantly to not have access to the drugs and alcohol! I also got into a good routine sleep and medication wise- and put on the weight I lost over the last few months with not eating. I also took advantage of it to get some referals, and find some places to get more support than I have had. So yes it was what I needed.
I did miss my kids- and my rats and my fish!! However as I said earlier I have an amazing man and I knew they were probably in better hands than they have been with me at times, and my youngest just knew I was sick, but I had explained to the girls in ways appropriate to their ages about BP not long after I was dx so it was easy to extend that, and it was my eldest that called the ambulance. I do think they need an explaination at times about my behaviour so they don't think it's normal and try to copy it, and they are old enough to get the basics.
Now I'm rambling! Hang in there Kat- I'm sending you love and strength

 
Old 03-04-2009, 11:38 PM   #14
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Re: depression monster.

Actually I'm glad you said that about how you tell your kids about the BP, that's kind of the same way I do it with my son's, of course the soon to be 19 yr.old knows the whole story because he can handle it. But with my 10 yr old I've just kind of explained it in a "10 yr olds" capability of understanding. Sometimes I'd question whether I was doing the right thing the right way, so it's nice to hear someone else does the same. I've actually got a phone appt. with the Social Svc. pro bono atty on the 26th to discuss what my options are and what kind of attorney I should get in touch with and who they reccomend etc. So you don't have to come kick my butt. *lol*

I'm glad you're doing better and it's nice to see you back around.

kat

 
Old 03-05-2009, 02:29 AM   #15
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Re: depression monster.

good to hear! Good luck with the telephone call. Remember to write down everything you want to ask beforehand and make notes during the conversation- I know how forgetful and disoriented I can get in situations like that, and there is nothing worse than kicking yourself coz you got sidetracked or overly anxious and missed something important.

I will watch the forums for updates.

 
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