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Old 04.09.2013, 11:45
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Anyone recovered from depression?

Hello,
I am looking for people who have experienced severe depression and managed to recover from it. And also if there is anyone else in the same situation with me and how people have dealt with work.

When i read old diaries i noticed that i have always had a tendency for negative/depressive thinking, might have learnt it from my mom. However, 1,5 years ago i was diagnosed a somewhat severe depression. It took 3 weeks to persuade me to start medication, but in the end I did not have an option. I have noticed that medicine (Wellbutrin 150 mg) helps, at least i have been able to cope better at work, but not all the time. After taking the medicine for a while i noticed i dont cry or laugh anymore, i was just "numb". But now it seems i have got used to the medicine, as i cry often and have difficulties coping. Some days i am fine and some days struggling big time. When i start crying i get migraine and then cannot do anything...I have planned to start doing sports regularly to get a better mood, but have not managed due to appointments or migraine during the week. Weekends i am usually well and then i do sports, even a bit too much.

The biggest problem is at work. I dont know if i should stay at home/go home when i am/get down. I dont know where the limit goes...Last week first time a colleague said i should go home, but in the end i didnt. Also last week i went to work a bit later. So far i have not been off from work a whole day due to depression, but today i told i am not sure if i can come...I still dont know if i should go. I feel a lot better at home when i dont constantly have to fight against feelings, but feel very guilty of not going to work and afraid of getting fired. I find it very embarrassing when i am crying at work and dont know what to tell my American colleagues when they are poking me about not smiling.

I am very interested in hearing how others have dealt with work when having depression. Depression in my case means a deep sorrow and total loss of hope, just hoping to exit this shit...Almost always it starts when I feel rejected. Because i am not happy with my life people see it at some stage and stop keeping in contact, as they do not want to be with an unhappy person. And this makes me feel lonely and worse. I know a lot of people here, but I have no good friends and the feeling of loneliness is killing me. Despite depression I am a very active person and have tons of ideas what to do and where to go but i feel sad and "humiliated" when i have to ask company all the time.

Not sure if the mood swings are also hormonal, as i am 44 year old woman. For me this is definitely also a midlife crises, as i am totally lost with my life (career). I have failed in everything: career and have neither a child (and too late now) nor a partner. My parents and brothers are in my home country but dont know anything about my situation, no point to tell them.
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Old 04.09.2013, 11:57
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Re: Anyone recovered from depression?

I am sorry to hear about your Situation.
I have made a successful recovery without any medication. The Key to success is, accept yourself the way you are, sing and dance (develop taste for music) do REGULAR sports, eat healthy...Write a diary (just for yourself not a facebook posts or status updates)
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Old 04.09.2013, 12:45
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Re: Anyone recovered from depression?

So sorry to hear about your situation.

Friends are very important support. See if you are able to establish a few close friends who will not be judgmental when you tell them your problems. I think the first step for you is to love yourself. When you are able to love yourself, it will be much easier for more positive energy to take root.

We all have our battles to fight and need a shoulder to lean on at some point in our life. Stay strong, there is always a silver lining...
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Old 04.09.2013, 13:18
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Re: Anyone recovered from depression?

do you have a therapist or do you see anyone? My sister was diagnosed as bi-polar, and in the beginning only saw a psychiatrist and was medicated. We tried to encourage her to see a therapist as well, but she didn't see the need. In the beginning she was manic, and had a few issues related to that. But in 2001 she became depressed. Unfortunately, in 2002 she tried to take her life (luckily was not successful), and at that point got put in a program where she met a therapist (and a new psychiatrist) who she still sees today, 11 years later.

I think that talking things out with another person, especially as you are alone, is just as important as the medication, and I can recommend finding someone you can talk to. Also, don't assume that your family doesn't care, it just might be that they don't know what to do/say/act... I hope you are able to find some help out there...

Last edited by drmom; 04.09.2013 at 15:15.
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Old 04.09.2013, 13:22
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Re: Anyone recovered from depression?

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Hello,
I am looking for people who have experienced severe depression and managed to recover from it. And also if there is anyone else in the same situation with me and how people have dealt with work.

When i read old diaries i noticed that i have always had a tendency for negative/depressive thinking, might have learnt it from my mom. However, 1,5 years ago i was diagnosed a somewhat severe depression. It took 3 weeks to persuade me to start medication, but in the end I did not have an option. I have noticed that medicine (Wellbutrin 150 mg) helps, at least i have been able to cope better at work, but not all the time. After taking the medicine for a while i noticed i dont cry or laugh anymore, i was just "numb". But now it seems i have got used to the medicine, as i cry often and have difficulties coping. Some days i am fine and some days struggling big time. When i start crying i get migraine and then cannot do anything...I have planned to start doing sports regularly to get a better mood, but have not managed due to appointments or migraine during the week. Weekends i am usually well and then i do sports, even a bit too much.

The biggest problem is at work. I dont know if i should stay at home/go home when i am/get down. I dont know where the limit goes...Last week first time a colleague said i should go home, but in the end i didnt. Also last week i went to work a bit later. So far i have not been off from work a whole day due to depression, but today i told i am not sure if i can come...I still dont know if i should go. I feel a lot better at home when i dont constantly have to fight against feelings, but feel very guilty of not going to work and afraid of getting fired. I find it very embarrassing when i am crying at work and dont know what to tell my American colleagues when they are poking me about not smiling.

I am very interested in hearing how others have dealt with work when having depression. Depression in my case means a deep sorrow and total loss of hope, just hoping to exit this shit...Almost always it starts when I feel rejected. Because i am not happy with my life people see it at some stage and stop keeping in contact, as they do not want to be with an unhappy person. And this makes me feel lonely and worse. I know a lot of people here, but I have no good friends and the feeling of loneliness is killing me. Despite depression I am a very active person and have tons of ideas what to do and where to go but i feel sad and "humiliated" when i have to ask company all the time.

Not sure if the mood swings are also hormonal, as i am 44 year old woman. For me this is definitely also a midlife crises, as i am totally lost with my life (career). I have failed in everything: career and have neither a child (and too late now) nor a partner. My parents and brothers are in my home country but dont know anything about my situation, no point to tell them.
Not a pleasant situation, for sure, but what you have doesn't seem a severe depression. You wouldn't work, do sports, meet people.
Try not to bore your friends talking only about yourself, and how miserable you feel - you are right, it puts off people...just talk about things that you like and know a great deal of.
Also, medication doesn't seem right to me...
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Old 04.09.2013, 14:49
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Re: Anyone recovered from depression?

I have a family member who struggled with depression for years, it was very tough for the whole family but we got through it together. From what I remember it takes a good deal of patience and time when starting a new medication but if you don't think it is working right for you please go see your doctor and discuss other options. Do not just stop the medication.

I'm really sorry to hear about your depression and feelings of worthlessness. It's probably not too easy to see your way clear of this when you feel this way. It's a good thing that you reached out to others here, I bet that was tough to do. Are you getting any help from a professional psychiatrist or phycologist? If not, please get a referral for some therapy because it could make a big difference for you.

You are probably right, your emotional troubles along with the migraines could could very well be due to hormonal changes. Have you been able to see a doctor about this? If not I can recommend someone who is brilliant in this area.

Lastly have you seen this video about the blind guy. It's called "Change your words, change your world". When I watched it it helped me to reconsider how I think about things. One day I hope you decide to drop your username and come back as MissSomebody.
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Old 04.09.2013, 15:03
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Re: Anyone recovered from depression?

I went the depression way too.

Visited Social phobia and lost job and flat.

Next step would have been a definitive move if my parents didn't help me.
Glad that I asked for some help...

They helped me to find a good psychiatrist. It's important. Very important.

It's also important you find people to speak, not only professionals, but also friends.

It's important you *let go out all the stuff you have inside*.
I used for that groups on internet, facebook, forums.

Just a last thing. You can get through it, there's light at the end of the tunnel.

and welcome on this forum.

a smile, just for you
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Old 04.09.2013, 15:14
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Re: Anyone recovered from depression?

Sorry to read about your health. You are not alone. Many people suffer from depression these days.

Have you tried yoga? It helps in more ways than one.

Read the personal story of a yoga teacher here in Zurich

I hope that you are able to find some peace soon.

EDIT:
Also, try joining some groups involved in hiking and walking. The endorphins released while hiking/walking will do wonders for your mental state.

And another thing, try and be positive. For one, chose another forum name. You are MISS SOMEBODY!
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Old 04.09.2013, 15:17
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Re: Anyone recovered from depression?

This is the advice I gave someone here some time ago:

Diagnosed with depression

The key point is: if you're busy doing something interesting, you won't have time to think negative thoughts.

If you're busy doing something interesting, and become good at it, your self esteem will increase.

Self esteem and self worth comes from competence. Become competent at something, enjoy the process and challenge of achieving goals and learning something new, and who cares what other people think of you?

Hope this helps.
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Old 04.09.2013, 15:31
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Re: Anyone recovered from depression?

I'm no expert, but just one thought - couldn't depression be exacerbated by living in an unfamiliar country? I don't know how long you've been here but you mention family in your 'home country'. Perhaps if it's an option, you could consider moving back?
I've moved around a lot, punctuated by a couple of moves back home. The times back home were comforting and easy. Moving abroad can be really destabilising, especially in the wrong frame of mind.
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Old 04.09.2013, 15:34
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Re: Anyone recovered from depression?

I had a major depression for years which was only diagnosed in my early twenties. In my case, I had and still have too little serotonine productions. There is little I can do about it except to take my meds. I have an obsessive compulsive tendency which is under control with the meds.

For the negative thoughts, I got a book from someone that actually helped me extremely too. How to feel good by Dr David Burn. He is an expert in cognitive therapy. The idea is to teach you how to recognize your negative thoughts and how to deal with them using rationality.

This book is like a bible.

There is some days I find more difficult to others but it is related to only one topic. I am seriously considering to get a therapist to help me to accept, forgive and let go as I still incapable to do it by myself.

Otherwise, I am happy, confident and zen (as much as I can, which could be much better).

Good luck.
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Old 04.09.2013, 15:46
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Re: Anyone recovered from depression?

I know few people including myself who went through depressions and are now recovered. Depression is an illness and in most of case treatable. Are you going through additional counselling or therapy except medicines? Sometimes these are more helpful than medicaments alone. I am not psychiatrist or psychologists to suggest you treatment but here are some tips if you want to follow:

- Firstly, do not stop medications unless the psychiatrists / doctors tell do so.

- You said that problem could be genetic (from mother) but may be your work is making the situation worse. May be you can think of changing your job or first taking a break from work for few weeks / months. If you have doctor's certificate, you are compensated by medical insurance. Details you can ask HR.

- I do not think you have failed your career or life. Not having kids or partner is not sign of failure. If I understand cause of depressions, depression makes one feel as failure so you should think you are not failure but just suffering from depression.

- If you do not want to ask colleagues or friends for accompanying you do to something, then why not join other people with similar interests. There are groups and clubs where you can join with people doing similar stuffs.

- Sharing with friends and families might help.
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Old 04.09.2013, 15:51
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Re: Anyone recovered from depression?

First, kudos to you for reaching out for some advice and support. I think that is very important.

I think the real source(s) of depression can be difficult to figure out, as it can be due to so many different things like improper sleep, not enough iron or B12, etc. as well as environmental things (e.g. bad relationship, hating your job).

I tried an anti-depressant (Lexapro) a decade or so ago, after my dr. prescribed it to me because I couldn't sleep. It did help me sleep and cope better with stress, but like you, I felt "numb" from it -- not really happy or sad. Kind of like a robot, just going through the motions. It made me feel almost inhuman in that sense. So while I'm certainly not suggesting that you stop taking your anti-depressant, I do think you should try to figure out if there is another source of your depression (e.g. a biological one). For example, low iron is very common in women and can cause symptoms of depression (as can low vitamin B-12, which in turn can cause low iron). I also know first-hand that inadequate sleep can cause depression.

After I had a baby 2 years ago, I became extremely depressed and went to a psychotherapist here in CH. Within five minutes of talking to me, he diagnosed me with postpartum depression. But then (thankfully) he noticed my iron score being only 38. So he gave me a series of iron infusions (intravenous), and I felt amazing afterward -- mentally, physically and emotionally.

Then I also began taking a multi-vitamin with a lot of B12 in it -- something called "Berocca" tablets that are sold at the Apothekes here. They give me a lot of energy, and really help give me a more positive outlook in life -- and definitely help me deal with stress better. In fact, I can tell quite a difference I how I feel when I have forgotten to take one. They also contain a lot of panthothenic acid, which is nicknamed the "happiness vitamin."

So, in short, here's what I suggest:

1. Make sure you get proper sleep
2. Try eating a big fat steak (for the iron) and drink a glass of orange juice with it, as Vitamin C helps you absorb iron.
3. Try these Berocca vitamins. Just be sure to take it in the morning and eat with them, as they can cause nausea on an empty stomach.
4. Try to surround yourself with positive people.

I see you live in Zurich. If you ever fancy taking a trip to Greifensee and would like to meet for a coffee and chat, send me a private message. I'm 40 yrs. old and have a 2-year old. I think once you see what my house looks like (because of my toddler), you might count your blessings that you don't have a kid.

I truly hope you're feeling much better soon!

Hugs!
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Old 04.09.2013, 16:05
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Re: Anyone recovered from depression?

In addition to the posts above, have you thought about making a break?

I mean somewhere like here http://www.sanatorium-kilchberg.ch/

I cannot stress enough the importance of sleep hygiene, staying away from alcohol and making sure you eat right and eat the food you enjoy. Diets suck. Learning helps. Berocca rocks.

At some point I realized that I don't know how to just be happy (there is always a reason to worry) and I am now learning.
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Old 04.09.2013, 16:39
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Re: Anyone recovered from depression?

I've had bouts of minor to moderate depression and i've had some serious, long lasting anxiety. I've held jobs, went to school, managed a staff and even got married during these episodes. I had therapy which was moderately successful for a time, but then the depression or anxiety would come back.

Finally, about 12 years ago, i went to a psychiatrist who prescribed meds along with therapy. I was totally reluctant to take meds - anxious people don't want drugs. But i started on a low dose, increased it slowly and holy crap, it worked, along with the therapy. I've been through death of a parent, international move, serious illness for both myself and my husband. I have emotional responses - i'm sad, worried, happy, etc - but I am not paralyzed. I am still on the meds, though i have decreased the dosage. A welcome side effect in me is that they seem to prevent hot flashes. (I am late 50's).

I've found it's helpful to describe my feelings. When i'm anxious, the world feels unsafe, as though all the surfaces are sharp and jagged. I'm angry, tired, everything is a threat. Depression is a dark feeling, nothing matters, nothing is a pleasure. It is sometimes hard to separate these two - they co-exist. But i know that when i stop seeing the world around me as a threat, when i see solutions to problems, when the world feels safe, smooth, and I'm curious about things - then i know my anxiety and depression are well managed.

Everyone is different. What works for me may not work for you and not in the same way. I think it's really important to have a professional who will work for you, advocate for you. Your environment plays a huge role in how you deal with this, and how you feel. Sleep, exercise, good diet are all important, but don't think that you're not trying hard enough, or this is your fault. It is an illness and needs to be treated as such.

But it's hard too. Been there, done that. Wishing you all the best.
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Old 04.09.2013, 16:41
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Re: Anyone recovered from depression?

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Not sure if the mood swings are also hormonal, as i am 44 year old woman. For me this is definitely also a midlife crises, as i am totally lost with my life (career). I have failed in everything: career and have neither a child (and too late now) nor a partner. My parents and brothers are in my home country but dont know anything about my situation, no point to tell them.
What about some medical investigations, blood tests and the likes?
I personally don't like how this "I have failed in everything" sounds...you surely have in mind some ideal of whom you should be, what you should do...is it your ideal? Or having to keep up with the Jones...start some psychotherapy sessions, you will have to answer to all these questions.
One of my relatives struggled for years with depression and it was frustrating for everybody around to notice that he actually openly spoke of his problems, but never accepted any advice, he trusted only the medication...a long story I don't want to talk about, but I think your family should know. It is them you should try to talk to, first... I don't understand why you cut them off.
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Old 04.09.2013, 16:57
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Re: Anyone recovered from depression?

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not enough iron
too much iron can also bring to depression.
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Old 04.09.2013, 17:09
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Re: Anyone recovered from depression?

Stress (especially high stress over a longer period of time) also contributes to depression.

My mother-in-law was a psychiatric nurse who saw many women who responded in different ways to hormone-replacement-therapy in their mid-life, for some it was dreadful, and for some it was a life-saver.

Medication is usually seen as best combined with "talking" therapy.

Any personally, hormone contraceptives area big problem for me. I've been on them over a prolonged period of time in the past, and either I feel really 'flat' and then just get more and more depressed over time, or they make me feel anxious and nervous. I recently had Mirena removed after 3 years, and I feel like a new woman! I think hormones have a lot to do with it and your general health - exercise, getting in the sunshine, swimming or doing some activity that is very 'tactile' like yoga, or getting a massage, fulfils an emotional need as well as a physical one.

It sounds to me like the life you have is not the one you imagined, and you are having something that is typically called a 'mid-life crisis'. That's where talking to a therapist, counsellor, psychologist, can help you to put into perspective the things that are good about your life, and the things you want to change, and the things that you need to learn to accept.

You may feel the loss of not being to have children, but have you thought that maybe you'd like to be around children ? Some women find it fulfilling to take a volunteer job working with children or families, or being an 'honororary' aunty, to help contribute to raising children. Other women prefer to avoid children and move on to other pursuits that they find fulfilling but dont' trigger 'loss' feelings.

I totally relate to the not wanting to travel alone. Maybe you can find a group or club where you find some like-minded people ? We have several friends in their late 30's and early 40's who are single and do a lot of travelling, and they seem to be able to make 'connections' wherever they go, and between staying with like-minded friends, family and acquaintances, taking risks, doing bus tours or similar, or travelling solo, they have some pretty big adventures!
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Old 04.09.2013, 17:43
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Re: Anyone recovered from depression?

Sometimes, families are not very understanding, or smother you too much, or we don't want to dissappoint. I can understand why the OP might not want to communicate this to her family.

This is my own personal belief, but i think that when you're depressed, it's easy to feel more of a failure, overwhelmed, more lonely - everything negative is exaggerated. And to get better, you have to see positive things - and I'm not trying to be Pollyanna here, but how you view yourself and your world matters. I think that therapy can help with this, and meds help by making some people more receptive to therapy. If you're too anxious or depressed, it's hard to see anything but dark spaces.

You should have a thorough medical exam, just to make sure everything is ok. And you need, i think, a good therapist who will listen to you, support you and help you find new ways of thinking about yourself.
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Old 04.09.2013, 19:41
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Re: Anyone recovered from depression?

If the Wellbutrin is not helping, go back to your doctor and try something else. Depression can be caused by a chemical imbalance in your brain.
I hate the idea of chemicals deciding my mood. I have been on antidepressants for years. This past two weeks, with my doctor, I tried to wean myself off the meds. My moods were all over the place, and I was very irritable. They were two hard weeks. This week I went back to my regular dose, and I feel "normal" again. I am disappointed, but if I need them, I need them.



Best of luck to you. Don't give up.
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