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"High Functioning" Guy needing some help

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gregferblink

Member
Joined
Jan 25, 2020
Messages
6
Location
Indiana
Hey there,

So, I am 31 years old, college educated, electrical engineer. I guess I have "everything going for me"? But, I feel very confused and no motivation for anything.

I am a "Senior Engineer", so I guess I have the responsibilities of more than just an engineer.

So, seems like I have everything going for me. It would seem that way.

Well, I think I have definitely had issues with anxiety all of my life, but they have been tolerable to me in school, since the responsibilities weren't so big. But, ever since I got into the working world I have felt that my anxiety has gotten way worse.

I never was medicated until I went through a rough patch with dating, and I just got myself into a very dark hole. I was seeing a CBT therapist, and I never really got much out of it. It is nice to vent to him, but I just didn't feel like any of the CBT methods really worked on me. It finally got to a point where I was just like "maybe I should try medication" and he agreed.

I was put on 50 mg of sertraline, and I could definitely feel a difference. It just seemed like a lot of my racing thoughts just stopped. I was amazed. I felt like "oh ok I can go on with normal life now."

Well, what would happen is that I would be on it for about 4-5 months, and then I would feel like "oh it's not doing much for me any more". Especially since I would skip doses often, or cut them in half, and I would still feel the same way. So I would finally just slow down and stop taking it, and sure enough eventually I would start to feel off.

I would notice that the stresses from work would "hit me more". And I would be affected by them more, I would almost feel it more in my stomach. Then I would worry about my customers and how they would think about me...and my coworkers....and my boss. And I could just feel each new issue that would pop up would chink at my mental state until sure enough I would be so stressed out that I would just feel like complete ass.

I would be unconfident, unsure about what is going on at work, have knots in my stomach, dry heave in the morning before work, come home to my apartment and not do much, drink alcohol to relieve the feeling, and repeat over and over again.

I told my therapist this, and he was like "yeah sounds like you have stress induced depression". Which I agree. I think if I didn't have all these stressors from work, I'd be fine, but thats pretty much unavoidable in the real world. I think they are multiplied because I am a Senior Engineer, so I have even more responsibilities and more things to worry about.

Well, I just basically went through this whole cycle again. I was on sertraline for about 5 months, feel normal, believe I can taper off of it, taper off successfully, but when it is completely out of my system I sure enough start to feel terrible and then I'm in a dark hole.

Can anyone else relate? I again am in this dark whole, and as soon as I felt it, I immediately got back on my sertraline. I am about 2.5 weeks into it, and I am just starting to feel the effects, but I still feel like I am swallowed by all my responsibilites and I don't want to do any extra cirricular activities with anyone. It is a bummer. I just can't wait for it to kick in again. But I am worried maybe it won't this time! I'm just a mess right now. I get it that probably a lot people have it worse because I am still able to function on it, but man I am pretty much a hermit in my mind when i do.

I don't like the feeling of being dependent on a drug, but I don't feel any side effects, and I just feel normal. It just seems like a bummer to me that I will probably be on this all my life if I want to make it easier. And then if I have kids, I bet they might have this same disposition. Or, am I just so depressed since I'm not in the right JOB? IDK SO MUCH TO THINK ABOUT BUT ALL I KNOW IS I DON'T FEEL GOOD NOW.


Thanks for reading my vent,
 
Misa_

Misa_

Well-known member
Joined
Jan 7, 2020
Messages
236
Location
Suffolk
It can take 6 weeks to kick back in again fully you may need a higher dose if it doesn’t. You might not need it for the rest of your life you probably just came off it before you were truely ready . You can ween yourself off slower as well which may help. Work stress is horrible I work in the tech world too and I know how much pressure can be applied to hit deadlines for high end clients etc. You need to remember to look after you too. What do you do that makes you happy? Have you tried doing some exercise like joining a class or taking up couch to 5k or just simply doing some long works that often helps to improve move and release some stress. We live such immobile lives and when we do move we are usually working so can’t take it in. Are you happy in your job? Because if so then you’re not in the work line of work you just need to adjust some things to make it better for you.

Always here to listen if you want to vent :)
 
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gregferblink

Member
Joined
Jan 25, 2020
Messages
6
Location
Indiana
Honestly, I do exercise pretty regularly. And honestly IDK if I am happy with my job. But, I don't know what other type of job would make me happier....office life in general can be kind of a drag. I know when I am on sertraline, I can look at all the positives of my job....but is it just a mask!??! ughhh so much to think about.
 
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Silas1066

Active member
Joined
Jan 29, 2020
Messages
25
Location
Chicago, IL
As a senior engineer, you have found out the harsh truth that success doesn't mean happiness, it simply means higher expectations and more responsibility. I am in a similar situation: senior guy at work, which means everything gets dumped on me, the expectations are sky-high, and I get no support.

Everyone says "try not to let thing affect you at work", or "hav a more Stoic frame of mind" --but it isn't that easy. When I am pulling all-nighters at work and I have to b back at the office at 8am, I am exhausted and frustrated. When things are constantly falling apart around me, I feel I have no control.

So this anxiety you are feeling isn't necessarily chemical--there is a very good reason you are experiencing it. I am wondering if a change of job or location might help
 
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gregferblink

Member
Joined
Jan 25, 2020
Messages
6
Location
Indiana
Yeah, I mean I like new that all along, but it was still just the "natural progression" to become a senior engineer and manage all this stuff. I noticed it was more work, but still manageable when I was on the sertraline. Without it, my stomach is constantly in knots and I'm freaking OUT all the time.

I do wonder if a new job or location could help. I am afraid of the location change though because I am so close to my family and when I get really low like this it's hard for me to think about not having them around.

I don't know...it all seems just too much. Silas...were you in the same boat as me??

And really the main reason why I stopped taking sertraline was that I thought it was starting to cause hair loss....and now that it's not yet back into my system I could care less just make me go bald I want to feel like my stomach isn't in knots!!
 
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Silas1066

Active member
Joined
Jan 29, 2020
Messages
25
Location
Chicago, IL
Having a support system of friends and family is important, so I wouldn't recommend moving to a different city. Nevertheless, you might want to see what else is out there job-wise.

I tried antidepressants and anti-anxiety meds. It didn't go well. I was tired all the time, messed up my sex drive, and made me dizzy. Ultimately went off them and got into psychotherapy which did help quite a bit at the time.
 
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gregferblink

Member
Joined
Jan 25, 2020
Messages
6
Location
Indiana
Yeah I have thought about that...just looking for other opportunities. But is it all the same??

So that's the difference between me....whenever I have been on them I just feel like a normal functioning adult. I have zero side effects, and it seems like I'm much more healthier. I can actually eat, don't have to "medicate" with alcohol as much, and my sex drive is not messed up at all. All reasons for me to think that I should just stick to taking it????

ugh...I feel like I can't do anything related to my job without it, I second guess way too much and I just feel like I'm not productive. I am almost 3 weeks into the meds and I still don't feel too great and I am worried that I won't get back to my "normal". But it worked the last 2-3 times I tried to ween off.


ughhhhhhhhh
 
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