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Hi I'm new and would really appreciate some advice and help...



New member
Founding Member
Jan 3, 2008
My name is John,

I'm 17, and thought I would join after some advice from a friend and I'm really unsure of what to do at the moment in my current situation- I want to know if I have a mental illness (I will post all the info I think may be relevant into making any vague diagnosis):

About 15 months ago I was taken into a psychiatric unit against my will after attempted suicide. I know it mite seem a tad silly at a young age but family relationships had broken down and my long-term girlfriend had dumped me. My close friends all agree that I had always been a depressed person on the inside anyway but always denied it.

Psychiatrists asked me lots of questions but I was never told if I had anything with a name and I did not feel as if they helped me- I spent 6 weeks there and I came out worse than when I went in. It felt like prison.

Info that mite be useful for someone replying back:

My mother is depressed (as is hers), she is on her own. I never knew my father, as he left before I was born. I had to have a major operation around my groin for a hernia when I was 2 weeks old. Me and my mother have never particularly got on but we both share an odd 'crazy' sense of humour, which all my friends say is very odd- but they are great and know me well.
Violence has never been a big issue in my life, but I am sometimes violent in mood and will swear and be very aggresive and really regret it. My mum got me out of my first primary school because it was rough there and there was always loads of fights but I don't really remember this.
My family is not at all wealthy but I go to a fee paying school on academic bursary, school exhibition and music scholarship- I am funded for my music learning, in which I practise to a high standard. For this reason I am very much a part of two opposites of social class- and have friends from socially opposite backgrounds. It is for this reason that I have been attracted to the very down to earth pupils at my current school- a few who are also on bursarys.

As well as music I spend much time doing sport, I do lots of athletics training (but am injured presently) and people would definately say that I am a 'fitness/music freak'! I have a very busy schedule which I think is a good distraction sometimes.

I feel I am always so depressed, I feel so lonely- even when with friends. Memories resurface and I won't talk to anybody and lose my grip on a conversation and have to ask the person to repeat what they just said. I used to (not so much anymore) get absolutely terrible panic attacks and severe worry/anxiety, sick feeling in the stomach (in and around the time of the unit I was very depressed). Alot of the time I am extremely irritable, very short temper etc. People who do not know me much say that I can have a very cynical, arrogant air about me- even though I'm not like that with close friends. I was always (up till now) reasonably conservative in my attitudes towards talking about being sad- I did not like the thought that I might be depressed, nor did I like the thought of anyone not keeping it secret. I sometimes get a bit tearful when I hear certain music- and am strangely easily moved my joyous moments on the TV, e.g. momentous personal victory in a film for the main character. It seems I only cry 'full on' at times e.g. after a terrible row or if I choose to sleep on the street after a row to be alone.

I am quite indecisive generally, but take a very driven attitude with things that I think is part of discipline- like going running. I am stubborn, worry about the future (but I often don't really know what I'm worrying about), I'm very forgetful with little things like conversations or what I had done the week before, and my sense of time is often distorted. I seem to have big mood swings sometimes, and often it seems quite unpredictable- sometimes I can't stop making all the jokes and being the joker, but inside, especially when alone or tired, I will act very differently.

Today I met up with a friend, but I can't really remember much that we talked about. In the hours leading up to seeing him I seem to have a semi-blank in my memory- I remember forgetting where I was and what was happening etc. I sent some very odd, 'deep', confusing texts to various people like stuff like I had only disappointed my mother and ex girlfriend and that I was selfish, and other strange, seemingly random things. My friend tells me that I was acting very oddly when he met me- saying I was 'in my own world', not really listening, breathless, twitching, odd mannerisms I do not otherwise have, saying strange things- generally not acting as 'myself'. He also said I kept asking him to repeat what he had said and that I did not really know waht was going on.

What bothers me about this is that I feel I cannot remember it even in the hours while I got a bit more normal- once I was seemingly fine a couple of hours later with him, it was all a haze.

Other than today, most generally I want to know if I have some illness as although I get very very depressed sometimes and have suicidal thoughts and black moods, where I feel empty and alone, I am otherwise 'deluded' (at least this is what I think of less sad self when in a very bad depressive state). I try to block out thoughts that I could have mental illness, or think about the past, or think about my ex girlfirend who I once loved dearly. I can be so joking, wit fueled and generally a 'cynical, mick-taking joker'- my friends say this is almost alarming for them sometimes as I seem a bit overwhelming and like a completely different person. My friends have finally stressed that they think it is now quite serious and that I should seek advice on whether I have bipolar or severe depression etc.

I am quite wary of going straight to a doctor- which is why I posted this message. I'm really sorry this is so long and boring for everyone, but I want to know the truth about myself.

Thanks everyone,



Well-known member
Founding Member
Dec 24, 2007
Hi you,

Sounds as though you have alot going on at the moment and are not in the best place. Seems abit extreme to me that they hospitalised you just because you felt suicidal and I agree with you they do feel like prisons.

I'll offer some info if so perhaps it can help you understand about feeling low

It has varying degrees of severity varying from a sad mood that may last just abit through to clinical depression that can last for months or years. There are loads of web pages in the internet that will list the general symptoms of depression.

When professionals look at depression they usually cateforise it into:
1. what they call reactive (i.e. you feel pants because there is stuff you can identify as a cause like a death in the family, breaking up with someone etc)
2. the other is internal ( i.e. you feel pants but there is nothing you can identify as the problem)

In general, but not always, the first is easier to deal with.

There are a number of ways to deal with depression and the doctor maybe a good place to start to get some advice and support. I would ask them to outline all the options open to you and I would strongly recommend cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) if it is offered to you but be warned the NHS struggles with their waiting lists in this area. (it will be available privately if you have to wait too long)

Hope you manage to work a way to a solution


Well-known member
Founding Member
Staff Member on Leave
Dec 16, 2007
hiding behind the sofa
Hi John, it really sounds as though your going thru he mil at the moment.

I dont want this to sound patronising but you are at a very difficult age and it seems you have had a few problems to overcome. I also assume when you were admitted you were getting ready to do your GCSEs, and now youll be getting ready for your A levels. It sounds as though you think people are expecting you to achieve good results as your on a bursary (so u must be very bright)

Just because your mum has depression doesnt mean that you will have it as well. It may just be a blip. You dont say if you are stll receiving treatment. Like Midnight says I think CBT may be very good for you and teach you some coping strategies.

take care:grouphug:


Well-known member
Founding Member
Dec 18, 2007
Hi John

Please take note of the other replies as they are sound advice.
Also i would say please try and make that first step to the dr , they are the only people that can diagnose you properly and get you the correct help.

Ye the internet is a great thing , but inmho i think everyone can google too much and read into thing's .

You have a lot going on at the moment ........ please take time out for YOU and make that first step to the drs.

Takecare now :grouphug:


Well-known member
Dec 10, 2007
Hi John :welcome:

it's not surprising that you've been feeling overwhelmed with all that's been going on over the last years. My personal feeling about what you've described is that you're working through some very important issues, and that your experiences are normal under the circumstances - and that you have a very bright future ahead of you (y). A lot of what you're describing sounds very positive, even if it may not be "mainstream". I would agree with the suggestion of the others that CBT might provide you with some useful coping strategies. On the other hand, I'm somewhat cynical from personal experience with regards to doctors - while some of them are really good, others may not understand what you're going through and maybe impose diagnoses on you which aren't really warranted. You would be the best person to know what your needs are, because it is your life and your experiences. So my advice would be to seek help from your doctor, but at the same time, think for yourself and go with whatever feels right for you (and change doctors if you're not happy with their advice/notions)!

Let us know how you get on :grouphug:




Well-known member
Founding Member
Dec 19, 2007
Hi there John, much good advice here. Funnily enough I also went to a public school on a bursary and attempted suicide, pretty dumb but I was displaying all the signs of depression. I was adopted and lost my adoptive father aged 10. I ended up being diagnosed as Schizoaffective (Schizophrenia and Manic-Depression in a two for one deal :clap: ) in my early 20s. Advice??? Tough one, my life (I'm now 38) has been quite tumultuous, sleeping under hedges, derelict houses, wandering around the country, wandering around europe, often with my guitar and do you know in the end I end up with a loving wife, kids, job, college, and a future. There's nothing wrong with going through this process, but see it a transmutative (you'll find the philospher's stone the last place you look for it), most people don't go through this stuff till a midlife crisis. Sure it can be put down to 'teenage angst', but I guess my advice is ride it out dude, you've been made a sensitive soul. Confront the fears and feelings you have and fight to have a happy future, hopefully it won't take you the years it took me (y)


Hi John, glad you're here. Your post was long, you're right about that, but it wasn't boring. It was courageous and honest and showed a level of insight that I wish I'd had when I was your age. I think a visit to your GP is a good idea. He should have notes from your hospital visit and can tell you what their conclusions are - or should if he's half way decent. A diagnosis of any kind is just that - a diagnosis. It gives you a starting point and something to work on but it doesn't define who you are - you will always do that. Keep coming back and good luck. :hug:


Well-known member
Founding Member
Jan 1, 2008

Hi John.
I have read all this correspondence with interest. There is however one phrase that you used thet struck me, what memories. these may be a clue to how you are feeling, and if so then CBT is not the answer. There are many psychotherapies, of which the cheapest is CBT. Effectively it brain washes you into a pattern of thinking counter thoughts or other distracting thought patterns that are put into your mind by someone else. In other words. it does not address the real issue. is that 'MEMORIES'

It was in way nice to hear that others have problems with music, and how it can yank at the emotions and heart strings, I have asked the professionals many times, why does it affect me so badly, all they do is to brush it off.

I also link to your humour behaviour, I was always able to give a humorous story, but I rarely laughed inside.(In other words I was presenting a false face to counteract past events)

People always thought of me as clever and intelligent, which I denied, saying I was stupid. The psychologist agreed with me in the end. Writing that my IQ was below average. (In other words I was presenting a false face to counteract past events)

You do need to see your GP to enter the doorway for treatment, They are the only door. If what I have written is familiar to you then you will need to push hard to get a psychologist {behaviour) even though your first contact will probably be a psychiatrist(Drugs)

Ralph :innocent:
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