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How do you handle Stress, Depression, Anxiety and Apathy?

This is a discussion on How do you handle Stress, Depression, Anxiety and Apathy? within the General Off Topic Discussion forums, part of the Life Beyond Horses category

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        11-14-2013, 11:52 AM
      #21
    Yearling
    Firstly I want to say, I don't want this thread to be all about me.

    Clearly, it is about me, but I am unable and also unwilling to spill details of my situation on the internet, as they may have further repercussions. I have been e-stalked before for this purpose.

    Here are some things I used to do that helped me:

    I used to enjoy long walks at nighttime. The night air is very peaceful.
    I used to enjoy going to the gym for a couple of hours at a time.
    I used to set aside time on Sundays to do "me" things. Think exfoliation and nails.
    I used to randomly call up friends of mine to go have random adventures.
    I used to get all made up and dressed up and go out for no reason at all.

    Then again, I also used to think that hard work gets you somewhere in life haha.
         
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        11-14-2013, 12:03 PM
      #22
    Yearling
    Ok, now that that's out, specifics:

    Jc--I will call a group that handed me a flyer the other day and see about talking to a therapist again. It hasn't helped before, but it can't hurt. You are strong to have survived the loss of a child, not everyone can.

    Japhy--I used to make time for scheduled activities...heck, I even find purpose in work. I do go to school currently but there is no accomplishment or enjoyment in it.

    Cacowgirl--This place does stink, literally and figuratively. And no jobs on top of everything! I have been trying to put order and enjoyment into a space, but thus far I have failed. Putting one foot in front of the other and watching every day pass is pretty much what I've been doing for awhile now.

    Saddle--walks are beneficial. Gotta have the energy though.

    Db--I do not medicate during pregnancy. I am pretty sure this is genetic to some large extent, and I'm unwilling to risk the chance of making things worse by subjecting them to mind-altering chemicals inutero.

    I can try to go talk to someone...

    Fox--you have to have close friends who are willing to deal with you. I don't have any of those, at least not close by.

    And I have exactly 6.5 years before my situation can change, 100 percent. I may get "lucky" before then, but I am not holding my breath. Some people are tenacious. I'd like to be able to view the situation in a different way, but I've found it to be pretty much impossible.
         
        11-14-2013, 12:49 PM
      #23
    Trained
    Demonmoon treatment is not easy and the path to recovery is usually emotionally painful.
    Making the decision to seek help for your depression and IMO anxiety is a big step.

    Are you willing to live the next 6.5 years depressed or are you willing to make the changes necessary to live a happy life? The answer to that question is up to you.

    No doctor, psychologist, or medication will do you any good if you do not fully invest in your treatment program.
    Good luck my thoughts and prayers are with you. Shalom
    JaphyJaphy likes this.
         
        11-14-2013, 01:02 PM
      #24
    Yearling
    Here is what I do for dark those days: Go riding, if I don't have access to a horse, I do heavy cardio excercise. If I'm at home and the weather is good, I take my dogs for a really long walk. If I'm not working that day, I try to treat myself with something like a pedicure, a nap, a favorite trashy TV show.

    I also supplement with Magnesium - that's made a huge difference.

    I try to remember the big picture. Sometimes I'll obsess over something that I swear is super important. Then I look back a year later and realize it was nothing. So I try to remind myself that sometimes mountains are just a grain of sand.
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        11-14-2013, 01:15 PM
      #25
    Showing
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by demonwolfmoon    
    I'm six months pregnant
    I think this may be a key reason why you feel the way you feel. And to answer your question the support from loved ones (particularly my parents) I personally found to be most helpful in "dark times".

    BTW, I'm not sure how safe all those antidepressants and other medications to take when you are pregnant. Despite of what people may be saying the drugs (pretty much any drugs) do affect the baby. So therapy would be my choice. You can also look into attending groups for expecting mothers and alike - may be something you may enjoy!

    And I also want to say congratulations on expecting a lil one!
         
        11-14-2013, 09:31 PM
      #26
    Green Broke
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Poseidon    
    Have you ever dealt with something like major depressive disorder? I mean like an actual illness, not being in a bad mood once in a while. Because what I just quoted is probably the worst thing you could possibly say to someone who has. The amount of guilt you already feel about everything you have ever done wrong, regardless of how much you can control it, is crushing and to have someone tell you to just "get over themselves" causes even more guilt because you just CAN'T. It makes you feel like something is even more wrong with you because everyone else is just so happy and you're not and you can't physically just turn on a light bulb. Telling a person that is struggling with legitimate depression to just "get over it" is like telling a diabetic that their pancreas should really get its sh!t together. It is a chronic and, frankly, life-threatening disorder and the way mental health issues have such a taboo on them in the US is sickening.

    Particularly if you've reached the apathy stage. This is a horse forum, so I will use them as an example: We all love them, but it's awful when you are so apathetic that you just think, "Why bother going to do anything with them? I could just sell them and save myself a lot of money, really.."

    Yes and no for diabetes.

    There ARE certain thing that people can do go improve the health and outcome of their disease. A diabetic can make efforts to decrease their weight, exercise more and eat a well balanced diet. That improves their prognosis, and for type two diabetics it very well could cure them.

    Same thing when it comes to mental health, there are thing you do to help you feel better. For me it was becoming a volunteer at a therapeutic riding barn and starting riding lessons. It really made me view my life differently!! For one, I was thinking about OTHER people, not thinking about my problems. I realized there were MUCH bigger problems out there than my own and that I should feel luck to get up and walk, or talk, or to eat. It also showed me that there is life moves on, you can make the best of it or you can idley sit by.

    Will a diabetic need their insulin, yes. Will a person with depression need their medication/therapist/etc, yes. Can it hurt to help yourself in other ways to set youself up for success?? No way.

    I also believe that you have to be in the right mindframe to help yourself get better. If you don't care you cannot solely rely on medication to turn you into this bright, happy, cheery ball of sunshine.
    Posted via Mobile Device
    JaphyJaphy likes this.
         
        11-15-2013, 12:40 AM
      #27
    Trained
    When I am down I always remember something I read once, which was that if you are depressed do not "sit", do whatever it takes to get up and go through the motions and your mind will catch up. I find that to be very true.

    As for people that do not understand "what it is like", I think you have to give them a pass. People don't tend to talk about depression or anxiety - so if one hasn't ever experienced it they probably have never had any sort of exposure to such disorders. I had "induced anxiety" for lack of a better term. It was the worst feeling in the world. It was brought on by the environment I was in (dense trees). I did not know what was happening to me which made it a lot worse. After the whole horrid experience (which ended when I got back to the desert), I was shocked to learn that it was a common "disorder". Then why doesn't anyone ever talk about it?
    Anyway, before I ever experienced anxiety I had no idea what it was and I hate to admit I thought anyone that said they had was either using the term interchangeably with w nervous, or they were just by nature a hypochondriac.
    What a strange society, really...I mean, ads on the TV for erectile dysfunction yet people are afraid to talk about anxiety or depression? Seriously?

    Adding: I am not one for medication, but that is my own personal choice. If you are pregnant, I would think they wouldn't prescribe medication. But, what do I know?
    Walkamile and dbarabians like this.
         
        11-15-2013, 01:16 AM
      #28
    Trained
    Missy May I could not have said it better myself.
    Demonwolf you are responsible for your health both mental and physical.
    I am a therapist and I will tell you most people resist treatment for a while.
    When you make the decision that you will do what ever is necessary to resolve your depression and anxiety then you will start your path to recovery.
    Depression runs in families and when you have this child your depression may become more of a problem. Now is the time to start treatment not when a new baby arrives.
    Change causes stress and stress can cause depression to become a bigger issue.
    Start treatment not only for yourself but your child and family. All of you deserve to live happy lives. Shalom
         
        11-15-2013, 01:44 AM
      #29
    Green Broke
    I've had depression for, well since I hit puberty I guess. Through high school I tried a range of medications and therapy but it just made me feel like I didn't exist. I was self harming and just really in a bad place.

    I moved out of home and away and attempted to make it on my own and tried to hold it all together. I didn't fix it but I found ways of coping.

    There are a few things I've realised. First is that I'm always going to have depression (and anxiety). It's not something with an easy fix or a "cure" and while there might be times in my life where things might be ever, it's always going to be around the corner. It sucks that other people don't feel this way but life isn't fair and this is part of my lot. I just have to accept it.

    Second, it's easier to "manage" than it is to fight. So when I'm okay I try my hardest to keep things that way. This means I don't drink or take any drugs, caffeine makes it worse for me so I never have cola or coffee. I get up at the same time each morning, and try not to stay up late. I love late nights but once my sleeping habits go wonky so does my mood so I avoid them. And even if I don't feel like it I go out everyday and do something with my horse, because being outside, doing something I know I like even if I don't like it right now helps keep things better.

    Your depression, your fear - all of it - resides in you. It has nothing to do with the outside world. It's not something that's been done to you. Whatever is happening to you by other people/circumstance/events/situations has very little do with your depression. This is an important aspect of depression that you need to understand. That's the difference between emotions/reactions and depression. The depression is there regardless. So don't think you're stuck in a situation that's making you feel this way, or someone is doing it because it's not that. For six years I tried to run away from it all, packing and moving every few months. Changing everything. It doesn't make a difference because the depression is inside you not on the outside. Look at it as your enemy if you want, as something that's wronged you but recognise it for itself, know where it lives because blaming the world around you isn't going to make you feel better. It's going to take away your power. Because we can't change the world, but we can change ourselves.

    Once you accept it, recognise it, know what it is - well it doesn't fix it but I think it helps. I try to live like I would if I wasn't feeling this way. I force myself to get out of bed even if I sit there and do nothing, I write in my diary, I write stories, I just go stand with my horse, I take long drives. I eat well, I sleep well and go into the sun. Eventually it gets better. Then when it's out I try to keep it away, I watch my mood, I don't engage with things that bring me down too much.

    Good, bad, evil, righteous. Well it's an individual thing what you believe. I believe these concepts are human ones. Names and concepts we've made up, like today is "Friday" - it's not really, it's just an event that we have named and created. It doesn't "exist" in and of itself.

    The world isn't meant to be easy. Faith comes from believing when you have no reason to. Enlightenment, love, happiness comes from fighting for it. And these people you think are "evil" aren't one dimensional characters in a story. Chances are they're emotionally messed up, miserable and afraid a lot of their time. As you know, what happens on the outsides doesn't always affect what happens on the inside, you have no idea the pain or hell they could be in. Maybe they have their "comeuppance" maybe they have that everyday. Either way, the idea isn't to have you see them suffer, see their karma. The whole idea is you go on in your life and they go on in theirs and balances out in the end. Chances are it will. I've seen people who were bullies in their life, unkind people, and they grow old often afraid and broken. To an outsiders though, you'd never see it. Bad things don't have to happen to people to have them completely wrecked inside.

    Everything exists in the world, good and bad. It's the nature of existence. There is this word in German "weltschmertz" which kind of translates as "world pain" which is the depression of the pain caused when comparing the reality of the world to an idealised version - or how we think it should be. I imagine it as being world sick, that the very nature of things make us sad. It doesn't help the feeling, but it's nice to know there is a word for it.

    I don't have answers, nobody does, but that's just my experience of it. Take each day as it comes and work through it. It's all you can do and if you look at it as a "whole" it's scary, it's insurmountable. Just take it as it comes, focus on now and do things you know you used to like, even if you feel nothing now.
         
        11-17-2013, 07:57 PM
      #30
    Yearling
    Demon,
    I can completely empathize with you. I've suffered from anxiety and depression since high school, and I'm halfway through college now. I thought I was out of the woods. For a full year, I was doing great. Finally having less anxiety. Not feeling so depressed. Always happy, always smiling. When I moved to college and was experiencing roommate situations, I just crashed. I came home for a weekend to clear my head and was basically unable to go back to the apartment. My head went off the rails, I tried to cut myself, I considered drinking Windex...it was the scariest thing ever considering that I hadn't been that suicidal since the 10th grade. Since that relapse, I haven't been able to find my way back. I moved home but continued school and am to the point where I am stable right now - as long as there are no major stressors.

    How do I manage my depression/anxiety?
    -I've been to three different therapists in the last 6 years. The one I'm with now is really great and has helped me immensely. I quit therapy when I left for school but had to go back. It is the hardest thing to do to fess up to your therapist that you're off the rails, but if you don't get help, it is likely that you won't get any better unless you're one that is able to pull themselves up by their bootstraps, which I am not.

    -I've been on numerous medications. Zoloft, Paxil, Celexa, Wellbutrin...I was also prescribed BusBar and Prozac but did not take those at that time. Best thing to do with medications is to not stop them even when you're feeling better!

    -I use the cognitive-behavioral therapy I was taught. This is mostly for anxiety.

    -Start doing something routinely that is soothing to you. Maybe a bath, lighting a candle, whatever...just don't do it when you're anxious. Eventually, your brain will perceive this as the norm, and then you can start using it for stress or anxiety, which will be soothing to the brain.

    -If you're panicking, take some deep, slow breaths. Close your eyes, put your feet on the floor, and imagine that roots are growing into your feet, putting fuel into your body so you can function. When you're done, also make a point of knowing that you can bring those roots up anytime.

    -If all else fails, tell yourself that you're safe because you are. Never tell yourself that you're okay when you're panicking because your brain knows that's a lie.

    -When you're anxious, do not make judgmental or emotional statements to yourself. Emotions feed on each other and grow. Instead, focus on truths. I'm uncomfortable, the couch is brown, the ceiling is white...focus on the things that are true and absolute.

    My apathy: I can't really tell you what works here because when I'm depressed I'm extremely apathetic and do not care about things. Nothing really makes me excited, not even my horses, but I try to do things that I liked when I wasn't depressed. If there's something that you feel very comfortable doing or even maybe happy, do it. Just try to get things done. I would actually like to know what I can do to feel motivation. I don't have any motivation at all, especially not when I'm depressed. I'm failing two college classes right now because for the first part of the semester I did not care and did not even bother showing up to the one. I procrastinate on things terribly and all I want to do is watch television, get on the Internet, read, or sleep. I wish I could tell you the magic potion to get over this, but I don't even know how to begin myself.

    For the world: Do your part. You see something you think isn't fair? Point it out. Don't be rude or mean, but do it tactfully. You might say something that will change someone's mind. Also, follow the rules to what you think is ideal. Be a role model. It's all you can do. Let the world go because you can't change it. But you can change people's lives, and live for that goal to help people be better to themselves and others.

    For your situation: Maybe try a different path. Confront it, look at your opinions, and choose one that fits you. Don't dwell on the past because we can't change that. All we can do is learn from it. Look to the future, you're having a baby soon, and your life is going to change! Focus on the happiness of that and try to move past the situation that brings you down.

    Hope this was helpful!
    dbarabians likes this.
         

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