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hi guys, happy thursday.

i'm struggling a lot right now with acknowledging that all the MI stuff i've experienced is real. i keep thinking that the years where i was suicidal were no biggie. i'm forcing myself to remember that strong, constant suicidal ideation is not something that someone who's not MI experiences. i don't experience it anymore, and it's hard to believe i ever did. it's hard to believe that i used to shake with anxiety. it's hard to believe that i used to change clothes four times before i could start doing work because it didn't feel "right".

in a way i have some envy for you that are older and know more about your MI and how it manifests. this is all still so new to me. i haven't felt this good in probably five years. i don't know how long i can expect this stability to last. i'm enjoying it, but i'm scared it means that i made up all the shit i went through.

have you ever had periods of stability? how long have they lasted for you? is your MI better now than it was when you were younger, or has it gotten worse? also, do you struggle with denial?

lots of questions, sorry. hope you're all well.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, echolocation said:

have you ever had periods of stability? how long have they lasted for you? is your MI better now than it was when you were younger, or has it gotten worse? also, do you struggle with denial?

I can tell you my personal experience...

I'm in my 50s, and I have struggled with depression since high school....I was started on my first AD when I was just 17.....SSRIs weren't available yet, so the doc put me on a TCA-amitriptyline........It worked pretty well, but I did have a few side effects..

When SSRIs came out, I tried Prozac, and it was like a miracle drug for me back then.....I took it for many years, and it never stopped working.....During this time, in my 30s and 40s, I was pretty stable, could function well, and had good jobs.

Shortly after I turned 50, everything went down the drain, so to speak......I quit smoking, and was going through menopause.

Somehow, all of a sudden, I became unable to sleep and started having panic attacks and severe anxiety......It was at this time that my GP thought I needed to see a pdoc......Before this, he had been giving me Prozac, but the anxiety was so bad, he felt I needed to see a pdoc for further evaluation.

Ever since the anxiety component happened, things got worse and worse and I developed the OCD.....My pdoc tried me on many meds.......By this time, I lost a good job because I was missing so many work days.

Finally, because of all the depression, anxiety, OCD, and lack of sleep, I felt I could no longer hold a job......I applied for disability, and was accepted......I am sort of stuck now in the same mode, and things have even gotten a bit worse........I now have horrible panic attacks, OCD rituals and compulsions, and crushing depression.........The only thing that seems to work are my sleep meds.

At least I can sleep now, but not much else.....I can't go shopping, can't leave the house by myself or drive, unable to cook, do housework or laundry.....I have to have help from others now.

I want to try TMS, but I can't afford it..........So I'm pretty stuck now .......I'm not really in denial about my condition, I accept that I might be this way for the rest of my life.........I do have hope though, hope that this could change.

Sorry I painted such a gloomy picture, but that's just my experience......Hopefully some others will respond that have a more positive story.

Edited by CrazyRedhead
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Untreated for years so yeah it did get worse.

much better with meds. Its not progressing at any rate. Hope it holds up.

while i know suffering is not an olympic sport, I sometimes think im just being dramatic. Like ive never been truly mentally fucked. That it was all situational. Like a fraud. What brings me back to reality is that ive improved so much on meds that there really is a chemical component.

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I've have experienced remission from depression for a number of years. If the meds stop the depression returns.

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Mine has gotten progressively more symptomatic when it comes to major episodes, though I just got out of a very short and quick episode that didn’t require a hospital stay...so maybe that’ll start a new trend.

prior to this new one, I hadn’t had an episode that didn’t at some point require hospitalization.  My first two could have gone without, but it was my first introduction to mental health and I didn’t feel safe out of the hospital, so I pushed them to admit me.  That episode was purely depressive.  The second episode (2009$ was predominantly depressive with what I would now consider a brief manic and psychotic blip at the beginnjng.  2016 and 2017 were a combination of mixed, manic, and psychotic (depending on what specific time period you are referencing).  They required the longest hospital stays and landed me on short term disability.

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I was depressed since childhood. I didn’t believe in meds and was self medicated with alcohol so didn’t take meds until my mid 30s, and eventually would find one that gave me good years until it stopped working. Well better times if not good. Fast forward to years later after what, in retrospect, were occasional manic or hypomanic times, I had an undeniably manic time, and change in diagnosis, pdoc, and meds. Since then, life has been way better. Depression seems well controlled and manic times not severe. I don’t know if this is helpful at all. But it’s my story in a nutshell. I think MI robbed me of so many things. I didn’t have denial over depression but have over other parts. Mainly I’ve wanted to avoid stigma. 

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Yes I have had periods of stability.  Some times for years.  I had a good period in my thirties that lasted years.  My MI has gotten much much worse as I got older.   Symptoms are more severe and last longer.  I am on a lot more meds. i do still get periods of stability however.

Denial should be my middle name.  My x Tdoc called it mood permanence.    Also I minimize things once they are in the past. . 

“ No big deal, shit happens “ 

“ It’s a mistake, I was just not communicating well or I was misunderstood.”   

“ I was just having fun”

“ I was just really down, I wasn’t  gonna hurt myself”

”these meds have made me worse, given me symptoms I never had, I am sure I am fine underneath them “

” I feel fine don’t need these heavy duty head meds, they are gonna ruin my liver and all kinds of bad things”

” they just want to trap people on pills, then we are stuck and can’t get off. I was never that bad in the  first place, i function”

The main ones are “ I am not that sick, I function” and “ I am fine underneath these meds , I can feel it.”

But I do function well, stopped drinking and using, am better at recognizing some of my behaviors,.  I stay very structured.  Like very very.   I have more skills now to help me.  I have more insight.  But struggle with mood denial.   Hell sometimes I swear I am not even bipolar and it’s been some weird mistake. 

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i forgot i made this topic. thank you everyone for your responses, it's fascinating to me to hear your stories about how your MI has changed through the years. i'm scared of mine getting worse, but just by all your stories, it seems likely that it might. maybe not this year. maybe not for ten years. but someday, yes.

it's interesting that so many of us have issues with denial. i always think that the only reason i have denial is because of the fact that my symptoms are well-controlled right now, but it seems that how symptomatic you are doesn't really correlate with how much you truly believe in your MI. i sometimes feel like my dx is flimsy, if you will. everyone's a little ocd. everyone's a little anxious. what the fuck am i doing with these pills? i used to think that if i had one of the big dxs, like bipolar, i'd REALLY believe it. so it's interesting to me that folks with bipolar have issues with denial too.

(forgive me for my implication that some dxs are less serious than others -- this only applies in how i see myself. i think no matter what dx i had, i would see it as less legitimate than anyone else's. i don't mean to suggest anything about any of your collective experiences.)

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