tough last couple of days... just having a vent - The Horse Forum
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post #1 of 59 Old 08-05-2012, 02:41 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Jun 2011
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tough last couple of days... just having a vent

Not sure exactly where to start with this... I find it really hard to put words to my feelings. But I need to get it out, and I can't put voice to it... it feels like admitting weakness to actually say it out loud.

I have issues. I suffer from anxiety, and one symptom of that anxiety is depression attacks. When I'm in a depression attack, I can fake being happy, but it feels hollow and I just feel numb. I can act "happy" with the best of them, and when I was working in customer service it was the days when I was having a tough time of it that customers thought I was happiest and most friendly. I guess because I put in effort to put the face on? I don't know. I can fake a really genuine smile like the person I've just seen is my favourite person in the whole world, even if I don't know them and wish they would go die in a hole because I want to be on my own.

I also have really nasty thoughts when I'm in the middle of a depression attack. Sometimes directed at others, sometimes at myself. I fake it so effectively, nobody knows that my mind is so vindictive. Nobody knows that I have these awful thoughts about people. I hate myself for it, I shouldn't be thinking these things at all! I'm not a horrible person, but I have the most horrible thoughts.

My family doesn't know that when something goes wrong, I always blame myself. My self-talk is so negative that no matter what is said to me, I still feel like everyone is blaming me for what went wrong, so I start making excuses to try to shift some of the blame. I am horrible to myself, and I'm a comfort eater... not a good combination because I feel bad, so I eat, and then tell myself I'll get really fat if I keep on like that, feel worse, and eat. Feel even worse for the same horrible self-talk, and eat. I'm not overweight at all, and was actually a few pounds too skinny a few weeks ago, but I know I shouldn't allow myself to comfort eat, so I always feel guilty and blame myself when I do.

I've had so many months of no depression attacks at all, only panic attacks, and I thought I was over all of this, but then I started having trouble sleeping, and all the negative self-talk started up again. I know it's happening, I know it's not true, but I can't do anything about it and my soul believes every lying word that my traitorous head makes me think. The only way to get through it is to accept it and wait for it to pass. But it always gets worse before it gets better, and I'm not even close to rock bottom yet. I'm dreading what's to come.

As I sit here and type, I'm looking back on today. I'm not seeing the fun I had chatting with my best friend, I'm not seeing the triumph of my 2yo TB's acceptance of my hand and the rope halter even though she had just flipped over a fence and given herself a horrible fright - even though she was so terrified she was literally shaking, she let me catch her easily. But I'm not seeing any of that. I'm seeing the small part I had in her flipping over the fence in the first place, blowing it out of proportion so that in my mind I am taking the full blame for what was a freak accident caused by a very small misjudgement... seeing everything that might have happened and just how terrible it could have been.

Right now, I am blaming myself for very nearly killing the horse I have only had for a week but had bonded with the moment I saw her. In reality, she's NOT nearly dead, just a bit scraped up and bruised. In reality, it was NOT my fault, just a freak accident. Yes, I had a part to play in it, and should have backed off a little, but I have been round penning horses for so long that it has become instinct to block them from going in the direction you don't want them to go. She had an easy escape in the other direction, or off through the middle of the round pen. I did not MAKE her attempt to jump out, it was HER choice.

Yet, somehow, knowing all of that, I still place the full blame for this incident on my own shoulders. This, and many more. And I feel useless, and I feel like I shouldn't have horses at all, let alone a troubled 2yo Thoroughbred.

I wish nothing more than to make these self-critical, untrue, bullying thoughts go away. I'm not even close to rock bottom, I know how it feels to wholly believe that the only solution, the only option, is death and this is not a shade on that kind of pain. In those darkest days in my past, the only thing that stopped me from taking my own life was my own fear... fear of physical pain, fear of the unknown. I "chickened out", and I'm glad for that fear because without it, I would not be here today.

I just wish that I could stop these thoughts from hurting me, the way I stopped other people's bullying from hurting me. I wish I could decide not to care, but it's not that easy when it's my own head that's doing the bullying. I don't care what OTHER people think of me... I only care what I think about myself. What do I have if I stop caring about that most precious thing, my own self-esteem? Yet when I'm having a hard time of it, and the only things I think about myself and others are negative, I wish I could switch off to it and just not give a ****.

Medication doesn't work, therapy doesn't work, I have seen my doctor about this several times in the past but it just doesn't change anything. I'm going to have to deal, the only way I know how - by toughing it out and thinking of my animals ahead of myself. I don't have it in me to care about people at the moment... it's hard enough to remember my love for my animals.

What I wouldn't give to stop having depression attacks... even if they're replaced with horrible panic attacks. I don't care. Panic attacks are easier than this. I would know. I have both.

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post #2 of 59 Old 08-05-2012, 11:27 PM
Join Date: May 2011
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Has a Dr determined what type of disorder you have?
The symptoms you are descibing are alarming.
As a Mental Health professional I urge you to seek help.
Therapy and Medication DO WORK. It is not easy and you may not like the journey but it can give you back your life.
The deep dark cloud of Depression is overwhelming at times but there is hope and you can be successfully treated.
1 in 4 americans will suffer from a mental illness at some point in their lives.
Therapy and medication do take time. You did not arrive at this overnight to expect treatment to work that quickly is not logical. It took you years to get to this point. It will take time for your treatment plan to work. There is no easy solution and the symptoms do not just go away. Your Dr can develop a treatment plan with you.
I urge you once again to seek treatment.
I suspect this is more than depression.
If you have any thoughts of harming yourself or any one else you need to seek help immediately. Shalom Donald
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post #3 of 59 Old 08-06-2012, 01:32 AM
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Location: Western NY
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This CAN be changed.

You might need medication, you might need therapy, you might need religion, you might need a support group, you might just need one friend that's been through what you're going through... but don't just assume you have to live like this forever.

I don't know if you're religious or if you've ever even thought on the matter, I'm just going to share what I believe, and what has made a huge difference in my life.

When I can't seem to shake the shame, stupid guilt, and depression I turn to my savior, Jesus Christ. He is my rock and my identity. He knows I've messed up, He knows what a downright awful person I can be at times. Truth is I deserve punishment for that, hell actually, but the God of the universe gave us a different option. Jesus Christ showed us His love for us by dying for us, taking our punishment, even though we were still sinners.

Basically, it's like when someone posts bail for someone else's crime, only He paid for our crimes with His life.

The Bible says, "If you confess with your mouth, 'Jesus is Lord', and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved."

It also says, "It is by grace you have been saved, through faith - and this not of yourselves, it is the gift of God - not by works, so that no one can boast"

Basically what has helped me in the past, and continues to heal me, is the security I have in Jesus Christ. He is the same now and forever, and He loves me not because of what I have or haven't done, but because I am His child.

The Lord does not hold my sins against me anymore, Jesus paid for them with His life, I am totally cleansed in His eyes. He is the perfect judge. He has more right than anyone to hate me for my mistakes, but He doesn't. I've realised I can't judge myself better than He can... and I've started to just pour out all my troubles to Him when the shame and depression starts to come back.

I hope you will consider this, He loves you and does not want you to suffer this way.

We don't want you to suffer this way either! Feel free to send me a message if you want to.

Hugs to you!
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post #4 of 59 Old 08-06-2012, 09:03 AM
Green Broke
Join Date: Feb 2011
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Sorry you are feeling so badly. you know this will pass. Hope you can find some comfort soon. Don't give up on treatment-it does take time.
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post #5 of 59 Old 08-06-2012, 09:47 AM
Join Date: Nov 2006
Location: MN
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I agree that you may need medication.

It does NOT mean you are a bad or weak person. It is simply body chemistry. Your body doesn't produce enough or produces too much of a chemical that you need. Could be age, could be horomones that throw off the balance.

Not one of us is 'perfect'. There is no harm in seeking assistance to deal with issues.

Best wishes to you.
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post #6 of 59 Old 08-06-2012, 09:54 AM Thread Starter
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The diagnosis I have for anxiety did come from my doctor, yes. He knew that I was suicidal, when I was suicidal, and the diagnosis did not change.

I gave the therapy and medication plenty of time to work, was on the meds for months and the panic attacks decreased, but medication has done nothing for the depression attacks. Nor has therapy.

I wish I could take solace in God, I really do... but I haven't much faith in religion, not with my perspective on life.

I don't JUST have anxiety, I also have Asperger's Syndrome. Because of that, I don't like change, which I think is what set off this particular depression attack. I sold one horse, bought another, and ended up with a horse that takes a lot more effort to work with than I expected. I also started riding a bratty half-Arab pony for his owner, because she's a really "soft" rider and I'm the only person she knows who is small enough AND firm enough to sort him out. My gelding changed shape again and has started getting resistant in his flatwork - behaviour which I know indicates his saddle isn't quite right, and which I know will end in bucking if I don't find a solution. I have two horses to ride who I can only ride bareback at the moment because of it.

I went from being able to rely on Mum to cook for me and buy all the right foods, to having to go grocery shopping for myself, and cook for myself, because Mum went on a diet program which supplies her food. While I am enjoying having a more energetic, and shrinking, mother, it's a massive lifestyle change for me!

It's just too much change in one hit and I guess I'm a bit overwhelmed. It will pass, and it will pass soon. It's already been a few days, and these depression attacks usually only last a maximum of a week. I usually then go months without one single depressed day.

I will be ok, I know that I don't have much more of this ahead of me before life is good again.

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post #7 of 59 Old 08-06-2012, 12:26 PM
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Some of the problems you face with dealing with change are things you can hangs - good news!

I think you should have a journal or a blog, first of all. You might find it easier to process your thoughts and emotions if they're written/typed out. Look at what makes you anxious and depressed. There may be patterns.

With the horses..
- selling a horse is hard. Look at the reasons why you sold the horse. Those are the reasons why this change was good for you and something you chose.
- retraining a horse is hard and with an unknown/new horse you will have surprises. Nothing for it. Keep track of your progress with the horse(s) you're training. Again, a blog or journal may help. Note what you intended on working on that day, what you actually ended up working on and why, and how you ended the session.

With your mum..
This could be a really fun learning and bonding experience for you together! Use her experience and ASK FOR HELP. Have her teach you how to choose things and make meal plans and how to do every little thing she does in the kitchen. Have her incorporate the new things she's learning from the diet so that you both learn how to cook healthy things. Those prepackaged meals are nice but they don't teach her how to eat right so she will gain it all back if she doesn't learn.
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post #8 of 59 Old 08-06-2012, 12:54 PM Thread Starter
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Thanks :) I have a journal of working with my new filly, and the brat pony is nothing new (went through ALL the same things with a little welsh I used to have). The sale of my buckskin hasn't ACTUALLY changed much, she still lives on the same property, because I sold her to my mother! I'm very happy with the home she's in, and she is absolutely perfect for Mum who is big into low-level dressage but before now hasn't really had a horse that was built for it... I mean Satin's not built perfect for dressage but she's a lot better than Mum's previous horses... 2 QH's, a badly put-together TB, multiple standardbreds and a god-knows-what rescue that was built like Frankenstein's monster!

With Mum, she knows about healthy eating etc, but she went through a period of high stress about 6 years ago and she is an emotional eater too (hmmmmm think I might have got it from her??) so she fell out of the habit of eating healthy amounts... she eats healthy food mostly but too much of it. That's what this diet is for - to remind her about sensible portion sizes.

I think my problem is that I know how to cook healthy food but it takes longer than unhealthy food and I'm your typical lazy young adult! I'm not likely to put too much weight on, especially with the fact that I got a lot of "skinny" genetics from my dad's side and so it doesn't matter how badly I eat, I never put on weight.... but I try to watch it anyway because my grandfather on Dad's side had a heart attack very young, which was bad enough that he was told he had to retire right away.


Last edited by blue eyed pony; 08-06-2012 at 12:56 PM.
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post #9 of 59 Old 08-06-2012, 02:24 PM
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More ideas for you :)

You and your mom can support each other on emotional eating. Maybe arrange to call or text instead of getting the snack, or taking a walk together?

Get a crockpot! There are a million delicious and healthy recipes. If you don't mind eating the same thing over and over you can get a huge one, spend maybe 30 minutes slicing and chopping and have several meals all done up at once. I cool a whole week's worth of lunches to take to work this way and usually have a few extra servings in there for my husband to eat during the week for lunch too.
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post #10 of 59 Old 08-06-2012, 02:42 PM
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Blue eyes I have been a psychologist for many years.
If the treatments do not work you need to try another one same with the medication.
If I had a dollar for every patient that came in demanding treatment yet did not want to invest the time or emotions into it I would be very rich.
Consult with another DR.
Your life is at risk.
I do not believe the first diagnosis was correct.
Cognitive behavioral therapy will show you how to deal with all aspects of your life.
Until you fully invest your time and emotions into changing your life however that may be you will continue to have eppisodes of depression and suicidal thoughts.
No one likes change but making excuses for not trying only makes the problem worse.
Is your life and happiness not worth it? Shalom
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