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How does everyone else cope?

B

Brassboy

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Jun 4, 2014
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I'm 37 and I've suffered with depression for most of my life now. I've only been treated for the last 3 years and in general the day to day depression has been under control but I always have the feeling of unhappiness and I never feel like I fit in anywhere. And when I think things are getting better I have days like today when all I want to do is cry and it feels like I'm going backwards.

I'm currently in the process of separating from my wife. We've had a few issues but no affair or unreasonable behaviour. I know the reason for us splitting is my inability to be happy. Maybe it was naive but I thought that having children would give my life some focus and a reason to be happy but, if anything, it's made me feel like a failure. If 2 beautiful children can't give me a reason to live what hope do I have? I don't feel like I'm living, just getting though each day until I die.

I've never attempted suicide and I know that if I had it would have been a cry for help. But now I feel like I just want the pain to end. I've tried to get help but things haven't improved and I also hate the looks of pity when I try and talk to anyone about it.

I often wonder since I've had an official diagnosis whether I'm just using it as a defining label and rather than dealing with issues I just use depression as an excuse. Is it just that I don't have the strength or ability to deal with things that other people seem to manage? Everyone has problems and I know life isn't easy but it seems like a constant struggle to keep going and surely there's got to be more to life than that?
 
maybe.shes.a.wildflower

maybe.shes.a.wildflower

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I find it hard to fix the issues too. Instead I just exist in this life. I don't want to be a part of.
 
Purple Chaos

Purple Chaos

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Oct 23, 2014
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It can feel like that often with depression; one step forward, three back. As you probably know, it can also sap you of energy and make everything seem insurmountable.

Separating from your wife can't be easy. I would say that it's quite a traumatic thing to be going through without dealing with depression too.

You say you've been treated for the past three years; have you had therapy or counselling of any kind? Are you on medication?

I know you're suffering at the moment but there is hope and things can get better.
 
B

Brassboy

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Jun 4, 2014
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Thanks for your post. My separation isn't too bad - I still see the children most days but it just feels like I've let them down and I don't feel like a proper dad to them anymore. It makes me wonder how much they really need me.

My best friend is really good. She suffers from depression and understands what's it's like but I keep taking out my frustration on her and upsetting her which just makes me feel worse. It feels like I'm self destructing and destroying everything.

I was on mirtazapine but it felt like it was no longer doing anything. I'm now taking venlafaxine. I'm not receiving any therapy or counselling as I've been told there's a 6 month wait and I can't afford to go private.
 
maybe.shes.a.wildflower

maybe.shes.a.wildflower

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Where i am there is low cost counselling called confide I think. Is their any charitable counselling where you are? Personally I haven't bothered as I dont believe it'll help me but I am on the waiting list for CBT as I struggle with my anger
 
StillFighting

StillFighting

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Dec 28, 2014
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Hi, it sounds like you're going through a really hard time right now. Suffering from a mental health illness is difficult enough on its own; dealing in addition with a stressful event, like a divorce, can add a lot to the pain you feel. So, please, try to be as gentle to yourself as you can.

To be honest, I've often wondered myself if I've used my diagnosis as a defining label. I think that for a very long time, I felt kind of frozen; because of my diagnosis, because of the symptoms of anxiety and depression, and because I wasn't sure what exactly was happening to me. When everything seems so unbearable, in my opinion, it's important to have good support to get through this.

I'll quote Purple Chaos' questions here, what kind of treatment do you have? Do you feel that it's helping you?

What helps me to cope with anxiety and depression: I'm trying to recognize and take distance from depression thoughts, or anxiety thoughts (that's how I call them). If I wake up feeling worthless, useless, I say "That's my depression talking". And I will try to keep my daily schedule, reminding myself that this is just the voice of depression, and not the truth.

If I get overwhelmed by a sudden worry that e.g. I may never find a job and things may go terrible in my life, I say "That's my anxiety talking". I try to separate those thoughts from myself, and stick to my schedule. (Of course, the schedule is a work in progress too).

I'm trying to identify in my every day life things that make me feel good, and things that make me feel bad. I keep a list, daily, with both. Honestly, at first I thought it was a stupid idea and I was very reluctant to do it. But I'm finding it very useful; I keep record, and e.g. once a week, I can reflect on it, and check what might possibly need change.

I've been in therapy also; although, I think it hasn't been that helpful. I think I may not be a good match with my therapist, which is something I only realize now... So, I'm contemplating what to do.

Anyway, I hope my post was not tiresome, and to hear more from you.
 
Purple Chaos

Purple Chaos

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A combination of therapy and medication is more effective than medication alone. If you can and haven't already, I would put your name down on the waiting list for therapy and/or counselling. Maybe, in the meantime, do as wildflower suggests and look around for low cost therapy or help via a MH charity.

It might be worth going back to your doctor to see if any other help is available. Also mention your medication if you don't think it's working as well as it should. It can sometimes take time finding the right one that helps the most.

Please try to understand that you're not letting anyone down. You're not well at the moment, which can often skew our perspective.

You might not feel at the moment but your children will always need their dad, regardless of how you're feeling or how old they are :)
 
B

Brassboy

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Jun 4, 2014
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The medication definitely helps and I can certainly tell if I forget to take it. I know I'm just having a few really bad days now but it's more the constant feeling of struggling all the time and not enjoying anything. Right now I feel really down and emotional but most of the time I just feel numb and empty.

I live in the isle of man and mental health services are abysmal. As far as I know there are no charities here to help.

Just talking to someone who understands really helps so thank you. I tell my friend similar things to what you've said when she's going through a bad patch. But it's very hard to be rational when you're going through it yourself.
 
Purple Chaos

Purple Chaos

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I know that feeling well; It's always easier giving someone else advice than it is ourselves.

If it helps, keep posting on the forum and maybe read through some of the other posts on here. There are many of us that can empathise and it often helps to know that there's support here if you need it.

Take care. :hug1:
 
B

Brassboy

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Jun 4, 2014
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Thanks StillFighting. Keeping lists sounds like a good idea. I always tell myself that it's just the depression and to remember that when I'm feeling really low but it's easier said than done! I do think I need some sort of plan or strategy to deal with things but it's just knowing where to start that's the problem.
 
maybe.shes.a.wildflower

maybe.shes.a.wildflower

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I can sympathise with the rational thinking thing!! My bf just doesn't understand my thoughts and reactions, I try explain things need to be a certain way, organised, structured as with plans and if things aren't right I go Crazy.
I'm glad you have an understanding friend you can trust and help each other :) I had friends once but I lost all trust and kept getting disappointed by them.
 
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