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disthymia

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telemetry9

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After living with depression for many years I am at the point were medication is only limited in treating some of the symptoms.

The illness has taken so much from me and I have lost a lot of my ambition and fight I once had. I don't have a lot of help or support and recent bad experiences in counselling have made me even more isolated.

I often can't make it to my GP on days when I am feeling particularly bad and have to cancel appointments. But I am determined to go on my next scheduled appointment.

I wonder if anyone else can relate to living with long term depression and how it changes you over time. I feel that it has taken my sense of hope for myself as I have gotten older. I'm now 39.
 
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Dollit

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Have you tried other treatments to complement the medication? I meditate regularly using a technique that can really help make a difference. Some people use affirmations and others take up pastimes that require some concentration but not a lot. Anything really that gets you focussed on something other than what might be going on in your head - which is really hard somedays. :hug:
 
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telemetry9

Guest
hey

Thanks for your advice and input.

I wonder if other people have experienced the change in personality in the context of living with depression for a long time and how each episode has impacted upon their goals and ambitions. I find that the simplest things in life are all I ask for now - I don't care about money and stuff really anymore.
 
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Dollit

Guest
I think depression does impact on your personality. My last depressive episode lasted 14 months and it coincided with me meeting someone in community work. He was off the scene for a while and I improved to the point that he said it was like meeting a new person when he came back I was so changed. If prolonged depression didn't change the way you viewed your life targets and ambitions then you wouldn't be depressed. That's the point of depression it changes the way you feel. But I never found it productive to dwell on what it takes away from me. It's hard when you're depressed not to but I want to know about the good things that go on in people's lives, the things that give me hope. :hug:
 
yakuza

yakuza

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I think there came a point around a year ago when I accepted my illness and symptoms.
Instead of rebelling against 'myself' I found ways to relax and cut myself off from the things that bother me.

Meditation does work for a lot of people :)
 
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Dollit

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I was told that getting a diagnosis is like being told that the person you were is dead and that you need to go through the grieving process in order to begin to get to a point where you can help your self. It took me about 10 years to get to acceptance. But once I got there I was more open to what I could do to help me and now what it had done to me.
 
yakuza

yakuza

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I wonder if other people have experienced the change in personality in the context of living with depression for a long time and how each episode has impacted upon their goals and ambitions. I find that the simplest things in life are all I ask for now - I don't care about money and stuff really anymore.
I find that setting myself achievable targets is a much more productive approach.
I sometimes wish that I'd had the same attitude 10 years ago which could have saved so many problems with anxiety but you learn from your experiences in life :)
 
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telemetry9

Guest
yes

I've lived with depression for many years so I know the drill - so to speak. But that doesn't stop it effecting my life on a daily basis - regardless of the things I "do". Of course, there are different types of depression and how it effects one person isn't going to be the same for another. But we seem to live in that climate now - were people see depression as a self imposed state of mind that merely needs some lifestyle tweaking in order to eradicate it. If only life were that simple.
It's hard enough to live with any illness as well as to experience a sort of intolerance because you didn't get better and got your own good self well and truly cured.
One thing for sure - when it comes to depression there are no shortage of evangelistic experts on the subject. God help us - as if it isn't bad enough to live with we must now be owners of our own condition.
 
nickh

nickh

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I've lived with depression for many years so I know the drill - so to speak. But that doesn't stop it effecting my life on a daily basis - regardless of the things I "do". Of course, there are different types of depression and how it effects one person isn't going to be the same for another. But we seem to live in that climate now - were people see depression as a self imposed state of mind that merely needs some lifestyle tweaking in order to eradicate it. If only life were that simple.
It's hard enough to live with any illness as well as to experience a sort of intolerance because you didn't get better and got your own good self well and truly cured.
One thing for sure - when it comes to depression there are no shortage of evangelistic experts on the subject. God help us - as if it isn't bad enough to live with we must now be owners of our own condition.
I completely agree with all of this telemetry. As to the changes in personality. I'm not sure about this. Certainly 'depression has changed my life' :) - if I hadn't become depressed at around 30 then my life would have been very different - I would still be at work for one thing I suppose. But I guess that's a sort of hypothetical which it is impossible (and probably unprofitable) to speculate about. As a result of depression I have made some choices and been in places which I certain I would not have gone without it. But whether any of this amounts to a change in personality - well that I am less sure about. Indeed I am not at all sure that I believe in personality any more (if by personality is meant some innate essence of a person) - I tend to think we are all playing roles, whether consciously or not. Depression certainly alters those roles - I can't function very well in social situations now at the best of times, and not at all when ill. So I can't play those roles any more. But looking back through the eyes of extensive therapy/analysis I tend to think I was just playing a different role in pre-depression days.

This all sounds far too calm and philosophical, and in fact its not really like that. I don't think you can ever 'learn to live' with depression in the sense that when a low hits it becomes less wretched, horrible. And I don't believe that anything I can do will prevent another attack (I just have remissions to refer to another thread :)). But I do think that over a period of time (and it was a bloody long one for me) and if you get the right help (drugs, therapy, whatever) you can work out a coping strategy. And maybe within that there will be positive stuff which you wouldn't necessarily have found but for the depression.

Just a ramble anyway :rolleyes:.

Nick.
 
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Roxy

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Hi Telemetry9

Like yourself I've suffered chronic long term depression for more years than I care to remember. Its so deblitating and does make life in general, much more difficult to cope with, and its so hard to describe or explain to anyone else quite how bad it is, expecially when I myself have trouble understanding the mechanics of it. Some days you get relief, for no apparent reason and everything seems ok, and then from nowhere you're back down in that big black hole screaming inside and feeling like no one's listening.

It's hard to be positive, I've had CBT for 15 months now and although my therapist is understanding and motivational, once I'm back home the negativity seeps back in fighting all the good she's done, leaving me feeling guilty that i'm not trying hard enough.

I believe Dollit's got it right with saying that acceptance is the key to coping and I do try to appreciate the good things I have in my life, like my two children, but just to wake up and feel 'normal', not scared of going outside the door, travelling on the bus or even talking to people would be worth more to me than winning the lottery. :(
 
dunglen

dunglen

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but just to wake up and feel 'normal', not scared of going outside the door, travelling on the bus or even talking to people would be worth more to me than winning the lottery. :(
how true that is for me too.

are you still attending your course Roxy?
 
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Roxy

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Hi Dunglen, I didn't go to course last week, supposed to be going tomorrow but right now I just can't face it. I do feel guilty about dropping out, however if I can't focus on anything, I really doubt I'd pass the exam, and that would just add to my stress. I sound rather pathetic, hope you're coping better with your studies. Just going to have a cuppa & biccie to cheer myself up.:tea:
 
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Dollit

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Roxy - being aware of your limitations isn't called pathetic, it's called insight. :)
 
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Roxy

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Hi Dollit

Maybe 'pathetic'' is too stong a word, but I do feel disappointed in myself when I struggle to finish something and then have to hold my hands up and admit defeat. So many posts on this forum show plenty of members still manage to either work or continue with further education while suffering this condition, maybe I just need to postpone things till i'm coping better.:unsure:
 
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Dollit

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We all function on different levels. My consultant has been with me today and we have been talking of the likelihood of me ever return to work and we agree that the chance is just about non-existent. I'm classified as a highly motivated, high functioning, high intellectualizing, high achiever and I'm never going to get back to work. I have to accept the limitations that I have and concentrate on what I can do. I get tired very easily but I know that I can rest when I want and that the voluntary work that I do is worthwhile and makes a difference. It's difficult accepting limitations sometime but we have to sometimes. :hug:
 
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