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Phantom Menace
April 26, 2000
9:38 am
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Frieda
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I have dealt with depression since I was 13. Mostly Dysthimia (sp?) I've been in therapy off and on since I was 19, and have become very functional. (It's a good thing, I have 5 children with a great husband).

This year (August) after dealing with more ups and downs than I could control, I decided to give counseling one more chance to root out whatever the source may be. After 8 months of counseling, here is the question I'm asking:

Am I pretending I have a problem or am I pretending I'm not?

I feel like I'm pretending all the time one way or another. I'm pretty cynical at this point. I go from craving therapy, to scorning it. AHHHHH
I cannot get objective enough to figure out my reality.
I know this isn't really a question with a quick answer, and I haven't seen any posts that deal with this ghostly torment. But any insight or even commiseration would be appreciated.

April 26, 2000
1:07 pm
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chris-tina
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Frieda,

I lay awake for hours last night pondering the same question. I sat at my computer today tring to figure out how to articulate it when I read your post. You said perfectly what I have been trying to.

"Am I pretending I have a problem or am I pretending I'm not? I feel like I'm pretending all the time one way or another... I go from craving therapy, to scorning it."

My best friend tells me that I'm just throwing myself a pitty party. At times I think she is right. Maybe, as you said, I'm just pretending I have a problem. I think that I need to just get over it.

Other times I feel the oposite. My same friend tells me to stop pretending that I don't have a problem. I need to admit it and get help. I often think that on days that I'm feeling better, I'm just ignoring the problems. Pushing them away until another day when they build up too much and I crumble again. My past therapist described this as a pressure cooker.

As you said. . . either way I feel like I'm pretending. I'm never myself anymore. I feel like I'm always trying to convice myself or someone that I am okay, or to take my pain seriously becuase I'm really not okay. When do I just get to be myself.

I have the same conflict with my therapist. When I don't go, I feel an urgency to talk to her. After I go, I hate it. I feel like I'm not going anywhere. All I do is explain and recount my life to her. It is nothing that I don't already know. It just makes me relive painful events from the week. I leave feeling more depressed and often even suicidal than when I went in. I don't feel like I'm finding any of the roots of my problems at all. At these times, I hate therapy. Why am I going if I'm only worse off afterwards? I just spend the rest of the week recouperating from last weeks session. I feel I'm getting worse not better from it. Has anyone else felt this way?

Anyway, maybe this was a pointless post. I don't have any profound insights or advice for you. I just thought I'd let you know that you're not alone. I know that it helped me when I read your post to know that someone else felt like this and maybe I am not as crazy as I thought I was. Does anyone else out there have any advice? I'm here to commiserate or listen anytime you want (or would I just then be justifying my need to pretend to have a problem?)

April 26, 2000
1:32 pm
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Brenda
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I have the perfect prescription for you guys and it will work.
DO SOMETHING COMPLETELY SELFLESS AND GIVING FOR ANOTHER INDIVIDUAL TODAY THAT BRINGS THEM HAPPINESS. DO NOT NECESSARILY TAKE ANY CREDIT FOR IT OR EVEN DO IT ANONYMOUSLY IF YOU CAN.
Let me know how it goes.

April 26, 2000
4:18 pm
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amyr
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Frieda and Chris-tina;

Well, now there's 3 of us who feel the same way! Although I have just begun counseling, I often think to myself "do I really need this?" or "am I just looking for sympathy from someone?". I have had bouts of depression since my early teens, off and on over the years, but never thought seriously about therapy until about 3 months ago. Suddenly it felt like my world was caving in around me, and both my boyfriend and my mother started telling me to start therapy, or seek some sort of professional help. I really don't know that it's helping me all that much yet, but I don't know if I've given it enough time yet either. But I was diagnosed as severely depressed, and was even put on an anti-depressant (Zoloft). Perhaps this apprehension we're feeling is just one of the many symptons of depression? Just my thoughts.....
Amy

April 26, 2000
10:03 pm
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Frieda
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Chris-tina and amyr I am both relieved and sorry to know we're sorting through the same stuff.
Brenda, I said, I have 5 children. Most of my time is spent meeting their needs selflessly, and much more doing all I can to create happiness in their day to day. Lots of it is anonymous. I know it sounds like we're--at least I'm self absorbed and brooding, and lots of times I think I just need to get my mind out of this mode, but even when I do, "It" the phantom menace is there, under the surface. I have tried ignoring it and trying to starve it out, but it bubbles out somewhere. SO I'm giving therapy a try and letting myself look it straight in the face. But I can't tell if it's just smoke and mirrors or a seething chasm. I don't know what else to do to try and figure it out. I've given myself a deadline for dealing with this, and time is ticking away. Whatever is left gurgling in there after next August I guess is just there to stay, and I will continue to be functional (I hope) but will just accept it as my proverbial cross to bear. I confess I am scared that I will find a deep dark something, and I'm also scared I won't find anything, that nothing is there. Neither scenrio pleases me, but I'm finally willing to delve in there and see which it is. I wish I could open the right door so that my counselor could say, "AH, a classic case of....." But if I don't know where to look or what I'm looking for, how can she? Chris- Is it Darth Maul or just a hologram??????

April 27, 2000
12:55 am
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Brenda
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I am not being critical, I just know it works to bring you out of yourself and give you purpose.
You may be missing yoru boat, you are defintely being selfless loving and raisng your children, but have you ever thought that may be you were meant for me.
\giving, is a good step towards more, and out of depression. IT does work. NO criticism intended.

April 27, 2000
4:06 am
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hazza
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HI Guys,
maybe as amy said this is part of the condition?

it seems l;ogical to me that if you have mild depression especially, there would be times when you feel better and may say to yourself "hey i am being stupid about all this" and other times when you are more depressed that yous ay to yourself "no, i am really not happy there must be something more"

i get this all the time, but with me i know that i have good days and bad days. more and more i just say to myself " the problem is not a huge big chasm, nor something to be ignored. the problem itself is the way i can fluctuate from one to the other," i just accept that some days are good and some are bad and l keep real close track on how i feel about things in my day to day life and try to work out what i want as i have had problems with supressing anger. on the whole if i am getting more and more good days then that for me is enough.
i see in myself, asking this question is part if the condition, i don't lie awake at night anymore trying to answer it, as i don't think there is always an answer. but i try my best to distract myself and the most important thing (as brenda said) is to do something for yourself that you enjoy. this is so important. we need to be us and well and wives, mothers, daughters, cooks,accountants, etc etc etc.

i honestly agree with brenda, in this regard, do something for yourself that you love to do and look at you life as it is today, here are now, what makes you mad? where do you feel out of control?

the symptoms you describe are also very close to those of stress. just tiredness of the body and mind can make you feel this way alone! it doesn't always have to be something deepa nd dark that happened in your past. sometimes it is, there is no disputing that, but often you can find the answer is that you are doing too much, for too many people and you are just plain worn out.

i am curious if any others here give themselves a certain amount of time everyday to do what they want, purely relaxation time for them? i find it works great for me. often we think we are giving ourselves this time, but when we look closer we are not.

hugs
Hazza

April 27, 2000
5:07 pm
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Frieda
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Hazza,
I hate the way you always nail things on the head<:> You make it sound so simple. Is it? Do I just need to accept that there will be some level of depression all the time, that I will have good days and bad days, and that if I pay attention to my "here and now" watch for anger triggers (anger being my main indicator) and basically do a little behavior mod, I can go on with my life, kind of like a seriously near sighted person but with glasses that can help me function, but will never give me perfect vision. If I knew for sure I would/could never get rid of this underpinning of depression, I think I could deal with it. But I keep hoping I will find some laser surgery that will actually correct the condition. This very tension of hoping there is a 'cure' and accepting that I'm handicapped is what I'm referring to. Am I over dramatizing? It's my specialty. I think it's a good analogy because like with glasses I have to deal with it every day, clean them, if I'm careless I will lose them, or break them, and over time my prescription may change. I do not want to wear glasses! I'm not quite willing to give up on the cure yet. Please can I have a life that doesn't swing to the uttermost depths of pain to the great heights of not-too-much-pain? And could I please not think about it so much? And please, please, please, could my children PLEASE never deal with this themselves, and may I never do anything in my desperation to traumatize them in any way. And could some good come of all this energy I've spent fighting for/against peace?

April 27, 2000
8:11 pm
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janes
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Hey...no matter where you are in the thread of life there will be good and bad, up and down.

When those five kids are in bed...take a bubble bath with your favorite non kid book.

Giving selflessly to your own children does not count cuz that is expected..make cookies for the old folks home and leave them with the receptionist with a promise to just share them...that's the type of giving I think Brenda means...

As moms we give and give and NEVER get back.

We need to care for ourselves.

..Like the song says..don't worry be happy.

So you are a bit or a lot depresssed. Get therapy and coddle yourself with it. Feels guilty to go somewhere and talk about your self and not the kids or hubby sometimes.

Check out library books about it. Become a positive thinker. Stop worrying about wether or not therapy is "right" JUST DO IT

Use it as a vacation from the world.

April 28, 2000
11:37 am
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Frieda
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I have written out 3 responses, and my service has been interrupted every time. Maybe this time...
Just for background and to maybe move past the 'reach out' therapy, I conduct music classes for preschoolers once a week, host two studies and a dinner each week, and take meals and tutor in the inner city, plus all the mom/school stuff. For myself: I walk every morning and have some quiet time before everyone wakes up, on Friday mornings I take myself for coffee where I read or journal or just relax, and Saturday is date night. I have honestly tried to implement both the selfless and self nuture theories, and I find great worth in both. My depression seems to have a life of its own and stands apart from all my efforts to distract myself. It is both elusive and pervasive.
The don't worry be happy, wallow school of thought is fine. But what about when the whirlpool sucks me all the way to despondency and self destruction?

Maybe what y'all are saying is that whether the turmoil is genuine or manufactured I need to just accept it and learn to live with it. But what if there's a root that needs pulling up and then I would be free of "it"? I suppose that's why I am in this tension.

I think therapy is less effective because I don't know if I should be digging into the mess, or figuring out how to deal with it.

It's a little more complicated than taking a bubble bath, I think. Here is my question reworded:

Is there a way to tell if my depression is
a) bio-chemical?genetic? (I'm on wellbutrin and buspar--helps with my anger; long line of prozac abusers in my family)
b)the result of some issue?/
c)just a ploy for sympathy and attention? (if so, WHY?)

Y'all may not understand why I cannot answer these myself, but it just proves the case that I am divorced from myself somewhere, unable to discern my own emotion and motives. Hazza you seem so well integrated in your own self, aware of your emotions, and willing to be responsible for them. To me emotions suck all my energy, and I avoid them at all costs.

If I try to convince you, janes, that it is a life/death struggle, would you still tell me to take a hot bath? Not that that it's not a bad idea. I took you seriously and spent some time in the hot tub last night. Hydrotherapy, I told myself. Is that all there is? Get some glasses (see above post) and learn to live with it? Then why be in therapy. I'm actually more hopeless after this, because evidently all there is to see is me, afraid my clothes are on fire and everyone saying, it's just a little smoke. SOMETHING is burning!?!
Maybe only burnt people can know this fear. If I really am on fire, and I do nothing, I'll be burnt and scarred and will probably die. If I am not on fire, I might just need to change my clothes, and keep an eye out for smoke. The question is:

How do I know if I really am on fire?

The kicker is that I'm like a quadraplegic, and can't tell for sure if I'm burning or not. Not by how I feel anyway. Maybe I need to find a cure for the paralysis. Will I find it before I'm toast?
Tune in next week, for another exciting episode of "What's that smell?" 🙂

April 28, 2000
4:08 pm
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hazza
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HI there frieda,
i am not ignoring you, but i need more time to post to you that i have right now! no one giving me any peace today!!!! like to post when i am alone and can dedicate all my mind to what i right.
also i need to digest all you are saying and i understand the dilema you are in. i can only ever speak about what helps me. maybe it will help you too, but i will post more as soon as i can, okay!!
i do not think this is any kind of cry for attention though, only a cry from your own mind to you, what that is about we will just have to work out as we go along!
i will post soon, but i did try to post earlier today but it seemed to have got lost in the ether.
just try in the mean time to think that maybe this is more chemical in nature than any thing else, it certainly seems that way, given all you have said.
i cannot be that positive myself today due to PMS! but at least i can just attribute that to hormones! that thought is helpikng me out today when i am getting mad at everyone!!!
hugs
Hazza

April 29, 2000
8:05 am
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hazza
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HI Frieda,
okay, you talk about not being able to give up hope that there is a cure.
i don't say to give up hope, but i say that to accept that you will have good days and bad days, can be part of the cure in itself. i have found that once o stopped geting so depressed about being depressed that was one less depression i had!!!

our minds respond the way we think, so the more time we spend making ourselves see things in a positive hopeful light without getting dispondent about the bad days, the more this becomes and natural way for our brains to think. it really is practice and more practice in thinking the right way.

so, to my mind, it is good to keep on trying all there is to life the depression, and i see from your post you are doing that, but also to accept that it is there but it is not going to take you over. the less you fight against it and accept it is there, BUT ACCEPT IT, NOT RESENT IT, then i have found that it does hold less and less power over you.

like with PMT, because i know why i am feeling bad at that time of the month, i don't like it but i accept it and I KNOW THAT IT WILL NOT LAST.

i have found with my depressions, i know that they will pass, and i know not to bother thinking about certain things when i am down, because i will just feel negative on those days.
when i feel that way, all i do is remind myself that it will pass and life in a few days.

but this is just me, we are all different, i still advocate that to accept and to practice making yourself think positive helps most people. but you need to find a way that works for you. all i think is that this way of thinking stops that impatience in you that can be so tiring.
just like your glasses analogy, if you accept the depressiona and learn to live with it when it is there, then if anything comes along to give more help then that is a bonus.

However, unlike eyesight, the mind is able to change, it will literally be forming new neural pathways in your brain for positive thoughts, and the more you think that thought the easy it is to think it. just like when we dwell on a negative we make it easier and easier to feel that negative thought, the same with positives.

the mind needs excersise just like a muscle does, so my philosophy is to stop yourself having negative thoughts, and make your slef have positive ones. i have found it works for me!

what have you got to lose, just try it for a while, when you feel despair remind yourself that it is depression, what use is there in thinking all that stuff? literally say to your mind stop! don't allow it to practice negative thinking, it is good enough at that already! and practice all you can at turning things around in your mind and seeing the bright side of it.
it will feel fake at first, but pretty soon you find that your mood does change on some things.
peace
Hazza

April 29, 2000
8:40 am
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Frieda
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Until last August, that was my goal: deal with the bad days, think of myself as a healthy person with an occasional down time. Then I decided to try counseling to look for the elusive cure. To facilitate counseling, I have tried not to replace the negative thoughts, but to look at them, analyze them, figure out why they are there. Which of course is depressing and wears me out. If I am just going to cope, I really do need to accept, and redirect. My perception is that if I put on the glasses, my chances for a cure diminish. Am I wrong? When I am doing as you say hazza, life is mostly fine, with some bad days which I know how to handle, mostly. But because the bad days were costing me relationships on occasion, and my children were having to live with me through them, I decided to try to deal with it head on. If next August there is still no hope for a cure, I will return to all the great coping skills a lifetime of depression has developed. Maybe that's stupid. This whole hope I'll be healed seems like pie in the sky, and it would be much more rational to just cope and go on with my very nice life. But if I can have a life without it...
You see? If I'm on fire, it can be put out if I look for it and yell for help. But if I decide to live with the smoke, I give up putting out the fire and I could be fine, or I might burn to a crisp. Tell me honestly anyone who reads this: Should I quit the quest for a cure, learn to accept and deal, or should I seek to sever the depression once and for all? Doesn't anyone ever get free from this? Is it just a matter of retraining the brain? Gulp. My ulltimate hope is to live a life that builds good relationships, nurtures beautiful lives in my children and friends, that grows in maturity and leaves the world a better place. I want my life to end peacefully and well, not in a fireball. My therapist says she thinks there is every hope that I can heal. What does that mean, I wonder...

April 29, 2000
10:00 am
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hazza
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Frieda,
I have no idea what the answers are!
but can you not accept and deal with it as you do AND look for a cure at the same time?

I personally, do not know anyone who has lost depression through councelling, but i do know many people who live far better with their depression by attitude changes and some of those people tell me they rarley get depression now, so from my experience, attitude changes have helped more people i know than anything else. But that is just me and my experiences.

it seems like you are saying that for coucelling to work you have to immerse yourself in your depression and almost allow it to take you over?
i don't quite understand that, maybe i have misunderstood, these things are so hard to explain.

My Boyfriend suffers very bad depressions. When we first met he and i would have these kinds of conversations and he would tell me outright that their is no way he could change his attitudes in the way i suggested, that positive thinking was impossible when he felt this way. over the course of the last few yeas however, i have noticed a change in him. He still has the same depressive nature, but the depression come far less often, and i now hear him telling me his attitudes about it and they are the same things i told him all those years back that he felt unable to do then. he has slowly become more positive through practice. this was just one part of him taking responsibility for his moods and trying his best to change his depression himself. it has worked quite well, i have seen him be in days of depression but he will refuse to go along with his negative thinking and wait until he "feels" what he is saying is true, usually once the depression lifts a little.

i do not say you must accept depression for ever, i say learn to accept it for now, and reach into the future with an open mind, the future is a blank canvas, try to enjoy each day now as it comes and make the best of it and don't focus so much on the future, if you keep telling yourself you will always have depression then you will, i just say accept in the present that some days are good and some bad.

if your coping techniques you have used int he past give you more calm than how you are now, then why not go back to that? there will always be bad days and arguments in familys, depression or no depression.
you will never be perfect will you? ease up and allow yourself to feel joy too, no one has a guarrentee that happiness will last, we jsut have to always make the most of it.
Peace
Hazza

April 30, 2000
12:15 am
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Frieda
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Why in the world did I pick the name Frieda? May I change my identity halfway through, or does that contribute to my MPD tendency? Why we chose which nickname should be thread unto itself. At our house Frieda is the name we use instead of "Hey you" There are lots of people living here and listing their names gets tiresome, so, I just call everyone either Fred or Frieda. I guess it's my generic name.

I will be going through some formal tests to properly diagnose my 'condition' and I guess I won't try to guess any more.

chris-tina, what tests did you do for bi-polar? Do you remember what they were called? I'm relating a little more clearly to your other post about fear. Some of the fear is that I don't have a problem, and if so, I have a problem. That's where we started isn't it?

Cici and other well versed friends, do you know what tests I might take? What do you think of these tests? Are they definitive? prescriptive? Will I know if I'm on fire or if I just need glasses?

I think my new identity will be justme. What do you think? Maybe it's already taken and I'll have to be justme2. Maybe I better take the test for multiple personality disorder...

April 30, 2000
12:20 am
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myopic
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justme WAS taken. So I picke myopic. I don't really like that either. I'm not sure of my real identity, no wonder I'm having trouble choosing an alias. Any other suggestions?

April 30, 2000
9:01 am
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janes
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We will talk to you whatever your name.

A bubble bath won't cure your depression...but when you have that bath use your mind in a different way.

Stop going one way on this highway of life.

You have a roadmap to life that has many many twists and tursn..you choose how your journey will be strssed and depresssed? working on it with hhope. Worried and frustrated. Or up and down, good and bad sunny and stormy like the rest of us.

You need to stop second guessing and planning for failure.

Try counseling and start reading some self help books and DECIDE that your life in going to have less turmoil.

Start saying no. Stop hosting the dinner or teaching one of the classes and keep the time for you ALONE!!!!

There are amultitude of things you can change. what you are doing also what you think about what you are doing

Never say I can't. When I say "give us a class or a dinner" you thought "I can't" and then you thought about the people it would let down if you stopped doing it. In this problem only you count...if you die..what will happen?
The classes and the dinners would stop or go on.

Remake your life so YOU enjoy it too.

April 30, 2000
9:24 am
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Spirit
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What happens when your BEST just isn't good enough? Do you work harder, faster? Do you reprimand yourself for not measuring up to standards others have set before you? Most often the answers are a resounding YES.

I suffered depression when my first marriage ended when my husband, and father of my two children spent the night with his girlfriend after I nearly died giving birth to our daughter. I just knew it was me who didn't measure up. I didn't have what it took to hold onto a "great" catch. After an unexpected visit from a dear friend from my past, which shook me to my very soul, I realized what happened happened because it was so ordained, by Spirit.

That lesson was tested again when my second husband treated me like I was his favorite whipping post, mostly verbal, but ended when it became physical. He blamed it on PTSD. I didn't care what his motivation was behind his behavior. I had, and still do have, a right to live without fear. I spent two days wallowing in my depression before I shook myself, but good, and released the FEAR I had about who I would see in the mirror.

FEAR is a great cause of depression. FEAR is a phantom menance. FEAR prevents us from seeing our true selves, as we were meant to be. I choose the nickname of Spirit because that is what I truly am; a spirit having a human experience. All the doubt, pain, frustration, FEAR, joy, peace and happiness which comes with humaness is what I choose to experience while the spirit of me inhabits this body on this earth.

There is no quick fix solution for a lifetime of FEAR, rejection, not measuring up, not being able to make our best better than, or any other negative forces that others throw at us. There is no timeline in which we control that which we want to change. The is acceptance of ourselves, as we are today, knowing that in the next five minutes our feelings will change again, and again, and again. Feelings do that, even ones we have about ourselves. Its when we get to the KNOWING of who we are as spirit individuals that change begins to take effect in our lives.

KNOWING replaces FEAR because with knowing there is no doubt. Fear is the opposite of believing. When you believe in something, or someone there is always that nagging doubt in the back of the mind that leads to the unkown. Feelings change with the wind. One cannot go on feelings alone because there are too many factors involved which cause them to change. KNOWING never changes. Its what you KNOW in your heart and in the spirit of you which takes you out of the dark and into the light.

Replace FEAR (the phantom menance) with the KNOWING of your heart (the spirit of you) and never doubt that you are a loving spiritual being having a human experience. May you find the peace you seek through understanding...

April 30, 2000
2:04 pm
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myopic
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chris-tina where are you? I'm feeling misunderstood, but I think you would understand.

Janes, thanks for your reply, I've been looking for it, and felt comforted by your words.

Spirit, thank you for your thoughtful reply. You've been through so much turmoil and I respect your maturity and peace.

I don't have any big stress to lay my depression down on. Lots of little and medium ones, involving abandonment and attention. That's part of why I can't tell if this is real. Am I really suicidal? Can you be suicidal and not be depressed? Am I even depressed? If none of those things are true--and I have no sense of KNOWING--then why is the turmoil there? Don't I have friends to share my deep stuff with? Why do I need a therapist? I've spent 23 years living with my phantom menace and I would just like to know if it is REAL or IMAGINED. Then, I don't know. It's become like a familiar pet, and as long as it's in it's kennel it's fine, part of the family, but when it gets out, it hurts people and i hate it. If I can get rid of it, will I? If it is imagined --like a phobia-- then I am confident that I can live like hazza says, and continue to retrain my brain to deal with it (put on my glasses)

I am an overachiever, and my half hearted attempts are usually more than adequate. If I ever really tried and failed, I don't know--I guess I'd implode. I feel like I've played this game so long that now there's no telling what role I play is really me. I know the ones I like, but maybe I'm the mean selfish one. I know that I am both, but not at the same time. My heart is oil and vinegar. Salad Dressing. Maybe that could be my new alias! The ingredients come together briefly, but it takes vigorous shaking, and eventually i settle into different strata anyway.

I need to be hydrogenated!!! Is there a therapy for that?

May 1, 2000
6:40 am
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janes
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Real or unreal what is the difference? If it is bothering you it is real enough to deal with professionally. We women put ourselves down to much to often.."it is just a little stress, just a little depression" and on we march to the jaws of hell.

Abandonment is a huge issue. Much bigger than you think. It probly colors your whole world.

You sound exptremely codependent. We do-deps have a tendancy to do, do , do, do for others, never get in return and wonder why we feel so empty and alone. We feel terrible guilt at doing anything for ourselves and we never say NO to anyone.

Yes there is a therapy for being hydrongenated but you will have to accept that too. It means you may have to do some changing in your self. It may make you and th eothers in your life a bit uncomfortable when you choose to stop being a doormat for the world and have a life of your own.

Needing therapy does not have to be for the horribly messed up.

It is also for us mom's who need to learn how to separate our lives and have our own selves back even if it is just for 15 minutes a day til all the kids move out.

It is important that you find the you that you can be happy with before the kids are all around 13 years old. They devlop their own lives then and we become chauffers. They still love us but they will be moivng to their own lives where we cannot go along. IT is hard to not be the center of the universe anymore. You need to continue therapy and make YOU the center of your universe for then everyone will be happier.

May 1, 2000
1:03 pm
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chris-tina
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Myopic,

Sorry i haven't posted in so long. . . I've been out of town. I'm catching up reading right now, but I don't have time to post. I'll get back to you soon.

-Chris-tina

May 1, 2000
2:09 pm
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heartfelt
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'Depression comes from a sense of something we want but cannot have, ......so decide otherwise" a quote from Search for Serenity. A good deal of my life was accompanied with my sidekick.chronic depression, clinical depression, whatever label is the buz word of the day. It has taken a willingness and work within myself to deal with , overcome parts, and continue to move forward. Anxiety, suicidal thoughts, intrusive confusion etc. I 've come to know well over the years. My triggers in life, my dreams or perhaps nightmares send messages to me saying look , you need to disect, taking small bits of information. Look at what's going on in my life as well as what part I honestly play in the chaos and just feel, accept , and continue forward. I've found over the years it's to convient to ignore, deny, look the other way, bury my head in the sand, etc. I wanted something all my life that's dearest to my heart.....ME Without having me, I truly have nothing healthy, so I will never give up in my journey of growing in ways we were never taught, told about , or experienced. Knowing who we are is a wonderful thing, good bad indiferent...then learn with this heart accordingly.

May 1, 2000
10:42 pm
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Frieda
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What part of my story sounds co-dep? I'm a selfish person. It is a huge thing when I actually say, yes I'll do something for someone. I'll think about it. Maybe I don't understand what it is.

Heartfelt you have some experience with my good friends, Chronic and Clinical. You found you and that took care of your depression? I sometimes wonder if that's exactly what caused my depression- too much ME.

Did you read that quote, I think from LEW45 "It breaks my heart to watch my mind" And this immersion into my psyche--that yes hazza I seem to think will hasten healing-- is eating me up. I think I have to stop, turn around, and get some distance from "IT" I'm beginning to get self destructive. I feel like I'm letting go of hope of a cure for hope of a recovery. I'm sure it's healthier, but it's not where my heart is. I don't know... thanks for caring.

May 2, 2000
7:19 am
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heartfelt
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Frieda.....I have continued to have my own bouts with depression even to this moment, but the work I've done has shown me how to recognize when something is seemingly creeping in to my heart. The recognition that depression merely exists in my life is a blessing in the sense that I'm able to get through the moment and move to the next. At first my depression was constant, not even knowing the big bang boom was there. Now, after years of biting off, seeing, feeling, implementing tools and hope in my life, my depression is less overwhelming, recognizable , and given me even greater willingess to on growing , knowing, and occasionally glowing..ha......trust me there is no cure, something much more beautiful, the unfolding of you. Plant a seed, nuture your seed with all the goodness that you are and watch you unfold slowly into a blossom with the thirst and willingness to continue to unfold .a little at a time. No time limits, no race, just now, this moment. There is a book I use often, again and again by Stephen Levine called " Guided Meditations Explorations and healings.....you may want to take a peek. For me portions give me quietness, some softness, and some have given me the opportunity to open areas within that were never touched before......sometimes we have to get away, that's ok. Clear the mind, breath....by the way " It breaks my heart to watch my mind " is in the book I mentioned. Another in the book is" "Sometimes it breaks my mind to watch my heart".......there is a beauty in those words...see the distinction.the heart of the matter.

May 2, 2000
7:55 am
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hazza
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HI Frieda,
i think heartfelt has explained very well the things i was trying to explain.
the way that if you approach these issues in the right way, you can get closer to knowing yourself and that that knowledge will be the greatest comfort you can have.
it is so hard to explain. but the same with my anxiety, the more i faced it and got to know it and all its tricks instead or hiding my head away from it and hoping it would go, the less it could affect me and handicap me, and this process goes on so there is always hope. I have hope in thinking about the next stage, what will i do and feel when i have conquered the next obstacle and so on.
peace
Hazza

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