Hi everyone, I'm new here. I'm pretty new to psychology and psychiatry in general (I've mostly read Wackypedia entries until now).
So I find still hard to differentiate between personality or mood disorders and between psychological complexes/"bad habits" or clearly defined mental illnesses. Especially in my case.
The fact that a lot of similar symptoms apply to very different disorders or illnesses is of little help.
Not that I'm trying a self-diagnosis, it's just that I find very hard to describe how I feel to my psychologist, and I realized how some kind of self-analysis "homework" really helps in the process.
I'm not joking when I say it took months to reach the level of understanding I've got now about my issues, and I'm still far from getting a coherent picture.
My best guess is Clinical Depression at the moment, that's why I'm posting here.
Anhedonia: I rarely experience pleasure in what I do. So when I do something, it's because I think I need to do that, or because I'm forced to. The main drive behind me doing things, even if I don't particularly like them, seems to be a need to compensate for feelings of inferiority and guilt (can't feel them very much though, I only can act in response to them or to prevent them).
What I find unclear is if those feelings are a symptom of depression, or if my low mood is only a consequence of being "not free" as I'm forced to act moved by those feelings. Simple example: I'd like to spend most of my time playing videogames, but I won't because it'll make me feel guilty toward my parents who expect me to graduate soon and then get a job.
Attention: I find almost impossible to sustain attention when I'm not incredibly motivated or challenged. Yet when I can finally focus on something, I can't think about anything else for long periods of time (may be hours or months), at the point of feeling irritated and annoyed when I'm interrupted. Yet after some time of intense dedication I simply lose all interest (probably because there's not much new to learn or experience) and need to find a new thing to focus on.
I used to think about those "episodes" as some kind of hypomania, but my mood is not affected much by those episodes, nor my energy levels, and even less my social behavior as I tend to become even more asocial than I am normally.
Could it be some kind of mix of between obsessive-compulsive and attention deficit disorder? Or is it a symptom of depression? How can you differentiate between comorbid attention deficit with depression, or depression-induced attention problems?
Memory: It is undoubtely linked to attention, so it's no surprise I have a hard time remembering things. What I find odd (and obviously annoying) is how fast I can forget stuff I was sure to know very well (we're talking about weeks, not years) and was supposed to be stored in long-term memory. So I can't find how attention can link to a fast decay in long-term memory. This seems to be a problem I've always had, like the ones regarding attention, but I really can't remember well (obviously
). Just imagine how it would be to have almost no memory of your childhood or teenage (and I'm 24!). And no, those weren't bad times, so there was no need to forget about them.
Depression seems like a possible cause for this one too.
Well this is long enough, but it's not over... I have sleep problems (sleep a lot, find difficult to fall asleep), digestive problems (very slow digestion) and feel generally to be lacking both mental and physical energy.
Seems very much like Clinical Depression you might say.
But I still can't convince myself of that: my mood, even if generally low, is rarely that
low. Most of the time I feel apathetic, not depressed... Am I just too good at coping with it? :P
I'd like to know what you may think about this, I look forward to expand my knowledge on these subjects. Thanks in advance.