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How to tell family....

Jo1760

Jo1760

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I was hoping to get some advice about how to tell family members about the depression i have had for years,

In the last year it has got particularly bad and am on medication and working with mental health professionals. Up to now i have blamed all my low days, all the times i've not wanted to get out of bed on either stress at work or pretending i have a hangover (the ironic thing is i rarely drink, although my parents dont know that).

My dad has a very negative + sterotypical view on MH and my mum whom i'm love to bits is incrediably over emotional to the point i dont want her to think she has done anything wrong.....

I've only told 3 people so far and a couple of others i've given a lighter version of the real picture as i still didn't feel ready to admit to anyone the truth....

If anyone has any advice about how i can tell my family and make them understand ( not that i'm expecting them to know how i feel) i'd be very grateful.

X
 
Jupiter

Jupiter

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Hi Jo,
I honestly don't know how you go about telling your family about the Depression as I never speak to my family about how I feel, and the only reason my husband knows I suffered from depression in the past is because I ended up in hospital after a failed suicide attempt, but it hasn't been mentioned since which suits me.
I'm sure someone will come along later with some good advice for you, they're such a lovely bunch here.
Good luck. :hug:
 
nickh

nickh

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jo this is really difficult. It is a very long time ago :))) that I faced this problem and it was never that much of a problem for me in that my wife has always been incredibly understanding and supportive. So telling other people - who anyway didn't matter that much to me in comparison - was a lot easier. Nonetheless I still didn't fully 'come out' for many years.

I think everyone's situation is different. You say you are with some mental health professionals now - what sort of professionals? Could they give you some help in this area? It might even be that in certain situations it would be better for someone else to tell your parents.

One thing I will say is that the strain of keeping it secret must be having a bad effect - causing worry, anxiety. I think that even if there are a lot of problems it is well-worth tackling this.

Nick.
 
rollinat

rollinat

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It's not easy, that's for sure! I told my parents that I was suffering from depression and they knew about the different MH professionals I was seeing, but I never felt they "got" it. I thought they would make the link between the frequency of appointments and changes in meds and so on, and how serious it was, but they just thought I was lucky to living in an area that had such good MH provision. I was in hospital at the beginning of the year and so they were on a fairly speedy learning curve at that point. I've been home for a couple of months and I feel that it's getting harder again to be honest with them, because of that note of disappointment in their voices if I say I've had a rotten day. My OH has been great throughout but then he has seen what it has been like for me the most.

Anyway, I really like the Black dog books - they are done like a children's picture book and say in pictures and a few words what depression feels like. It might be a good way to introduce the subject without it becoming too heavy. Here's a link: http://www.amazon.co.uk/Living-Blac...=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1239092508&sr=8-1

How are you at the moment? - I hope you are ok. Good luck!
 
KP1

KP1

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I don't think people realise how serious an disabling depression is so it is hard for them to understand.
You may be suprised by your family's reaction they may have some awareness already if they know you well. Good luck with telling them and I hope you get some support from them.
KP
 
keepsafe

keepsafe

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I don;t share information like that with family - I wasn;t brought up to be close enough and to share things - keep things hidden was my thing.

Only my o/h and the professionals know, I personally wouldn;t even go there with my family. Yours obviously mean more to you so perhaps it is a good thing to try and let them in a little.

Good Luck with it
KS
 
Q

quality factor

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I've had MH problems since a teenager and I'm now in my fifties. My mother has suffered with A&D since I can remember and has been hospitalsed twice.She has never had any problem with recognising my difficulties and has been as supportive as she can be. My father, on the other hand always had difficulties of acceptance, it was bad enough for him dealing with my mother but when I developed problems too he just couldn't deal with it. He listened to me but couldn't offer the type of support which I needed and closed his mind to it all. He was very ready to say, 'pull yourself together'. When I had to give my job up because of mental health problems, it hit him very hard and in some respects almost finished him off.
It is a difficult situation to be in and I feel for you. It is half the battle if
your family have some understanding at least.
Perhaps just trying to have a frank talk might help?
Good luck!
 
Jo1760

Jo1760

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Many thanks everyine for your kind words.
To answer your question Nick, at the moment I am under guidance from a Psychiatrist who is trying to regulate my medication, as i've been skipping from one thing to another over resent months, due to either them not making any difference, making my depression/ anxity worse or having a terrible time with side effects. I'm not feeling great at the moment and work being at a particularly stressful time isn't helping the situation either.

In terms of speaking to my family, it's not that i want to 'tell the world' or make a big issue of my feelings or even that i'm looking for sympathay (because that really not my style), i'm just so tired of lying and having to justify why I have no energy and can't focus on tasks at times. Really I dont want my parents to think i'm being lazy or not bothered, but you know how it is when times get bad, its very difficult to concentrate and get things done.

And yes your right at times it does make me more anxious not having told them. I dont think either of them have much knowledge on MH, as I also didn't until I began to feel depressed, but hopefully its something they could understand.

Thank you everyone for your advice and information. Rollinat, many thanks for the links re: the books. they look very useful.

X
 
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