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Old 12-14-2006, 03:43 PM   #1
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Student with depression seeking help (advice)

I am a 19 year old student at an English university, taking Mathematics.

Depression is slowly beginning to take over my life. I had my first severe depression episode when I was 16, which was triggered by my obsessive love for my unobtainable best friend, the pressure of my A levels, and problems with my parents. My parents didn't know what was wrong with me and I felt unable to open up to them and explain how I felt, I drank heavily and my eating patterns fluctuated wildly. I felt this way for a year, then I thought I had come out of that state of feeling, and worked incredibly hard and rose to the top of my A level Mathematics class, from the bottom. I felt very empowered and strong, and continued this way for another 6 months, reaching the pinnacle with my 18th birthday and a set of excellent exam results.

However, my depression returned quickly. I had a series of devasting conflicts with a girl who meant an enormous amount to me, my grades collapsed partly due to overconfidence, and all the feelings I thought I had beaten off returned. I had complete and utter apathy towards my academic progress, I simply didn't care. I managed to scrape up just enough to get into the Maths department of an OK university, and hoped for a fresh start. I hoped it was just a phase.

I had a wonderful first year at university, the best time of my life. I thought I really had beaten my feelings during my A levels and it was all in the past, like a different life. Unfortunately, at the start of the 2nd year, it all came flooding back. I had a relatively minor argument with a friend, which triggered a series of feelings that can only be described as an utter utter abyss. I've read the moderator's sticky about suicide, so I wont talk about it. I felt worthless, completely alone, a failure, a terrible burden to my friends. This was all in the space of a couple of hours. For about two weeks this continued, with feelings of similar strength. I felt so so weak, anything could make me cry, literally shredded inside, every waking moment was like being in a hole deep that there was no escape. Nothing had any importance to me. With the help of a wonderful individual and some tough words from her, I managed to stabilise the situation somewhat, but it never truly went away.

And now after that short journey, we arrive to the state I am now. Exams have arrived, triggering another severe depressive episode. I feel so worthless, my drinking is out of control (I became so desperate for alcohol one night I found my housemates supply and drank it all. I awoke with a bad hangover and to find them very very ****** off) and binge eating. The feeling of failure is the most prominent emotion. Failure to myself, my family, my friends. I was born into an intelligent family with loving, caring parents. I am analytical and very intelligent, but with good social skills and a gift to relate and empathise with other people and their problems.

On paper, I have everything going for me. You might think this might be comforting, but it does the opposite. I feel a horrendous failure to my family, that I've failed in my duty to live up to them. My degree is slipping away from me, even when I have the potential to easily get a first class degree. My drinking.... out of control is the only way to describe it. I feel a terrible burden on my friends for dragging them down to the emotional pit where I spend my life. I can't escape, not for a second, the feelings of apathy and helplessness. Every day is a struggle to keep going, not to hate myself and think about just how worthless an individual I am for failing everyone who believed in me. I hate myself and everything I've become, because I was born with a duty to live up to my parents and their faith in me that I could achieve anything that I wanted.

Last edited by Phazed; 12-14-2006 at 07:51 PM.

 
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Old 12-14-2006, 04:58 PM   #2
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Re: Student with depression seeking help (advice)

Most universities have a guidance counselor, or can reccomend where to go for therapy. It looks like from here that your depression hits when your stress and anxiety levels hit a high. Find a counselor or a doctor and talk with them about what your feeling

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Old 12-14-2006, 05:05 PM   #3
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Re: Student with depression seeking help (advice)

you may be very analytical, but it seems you are very emotional too. I too soak up others pain. It can be hard not to let it bring you to down.

you have to let go of these feelings you had for this girl, and don't let the past haunt you. I think conceling could really help you. It could help you realise why you are haunted by the feelings that return.

I am also a very senstive person and the smallest thing can get me unhappy for ages and it's hard to get over, but you can do it if you put alot of effort in it.

Do you have any friends you feel comfortable speaking to about these problems, if you'd rather not speak to a stranger? Although Some people do perfer speaking to someone they don't know.

I hope i've helped a bit

Take care.

 
Old 12-14-2006, 05:57 PM   #4
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Re: Student with depression seeking help (advice)

Ah, my friend, your words are eloquent, your story touching. Alas, in this day and age, (ironically, ignore my unfortunately anachronistic speech) people are uncapable of grasping the desolation you face; their ignorance mocks you, and you are left to suffer in your wretched state. Do you so wish to honour the wishes of your parents? Is that the ultimatum of your existence? To please others, to ignore and neglect your inherent feelings? Man no! Have you no sense to discover within you the natural joys of life? Oh how I savor the taste of freedom - unbound by the biddings of family, friends, duties. My own life has sought its purpose; I have yet to discover it, but through my perpetual anguish I am beginning to realize that it does no man good to be confined by blackened walls of his wretched heart. Do not let your despondency destroy your intelligence! You have already gained so much - do not let all your efforts be in vain! My friend, if there is one thing to neglect, it is all the horrid circumstances which you behold. You must seize these sentiments, ground them to a fine dust, and search for what truly makes you smile; only then will you be truly happy.

 
Old 12-14-2006, 07:50 PM   #5
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Re: Student with depression seeking help (advice)

Thanks to everyone for their responses. I'll try to answer some of your questions. Yes I am very sensitive, I can read too much into things and things can upset me that wouldnt bother most people. I do have a small group of 5 people (2 girls, 3 guys) who I can talk about these things with. I prefer to speak to them about these problems but I'm only really scratching the surface in explaining what depression is like with them, even though they are undoubtedly capable of dealing with things like this in a mature way. I am seeing a university counsellor reasonably soon, although it feels not quite soon enough - I could have got an appointment sooner if I had just mentioned the word "suicide", but I didn't feel right taking away an appointment from someone who perhaps needed it as bad as me, or worse.

I think its easy to misinterpret from my original post that my parents were pushy and put pressure on me to perform. The reality is the opposite, they loved me regardless and didn't care about things like that as much as perhaps I made out. In truth, I have manufactured myself this situation in my mind of failure.

Last edited by Phazed; 12-14-2006 at 07:54 PM.

 
Old 12-15-2006, 05:15 AM   #6
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Re: Student with depression seeking help (advice)

Phazed, sounds like you only think that you are valuable if you accomplish something great. You need to LET your parents love you for YOU not for what you DO. Sounds like you really hate yourself because you think that you have let your parents down and that you really feel worthless. From reading what you wrote, it sounds like when you had problems with others (girls) it really sent in into depression. Did you feel very worthless again when you had issues with others?

 
Old 12-15-2006, 05:22 AM   #7
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Re: Student with depression seeking help (advice)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sannah
Phazed, sounds like you only think that you are valuable if you accomplish something great. You need to LET your parents love you for YOU not for what you DO. Sounds like you really hate yourself because you think that you have let your parents down and that you really feel worthless. From reading what you wrote, it sounds like when you had problems with others (girls) it really sent in into depression. Did you feel very worthless again when you had issues with others?
The initial feelings are different, more natural feelings of being upset etc. But events like that trigger the beginnings of a cycle of thought that means I come to the same conclusions in my mind. If I am involved with a girl, and that relationship fails, it can (but not always, it does depend on the circumstances) begin an episode of depression. It completely depends on how it ends, if I am severely rejected or betrayed, then that will (and has before) start a pattern of thought.

 
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