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The Mental Health Thread

Started by smallcleanrat, May 25, 2020, 07:14:50 PM

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Puget

Quote from: smallcleanrat on July 06, 2020, 10:09:41 AM
Quote from: Cheerful on July 05, 2020, 03:23:36 PM
Shout out to smallcleanrat.  Wishing you all the best this week as you start the program.  We're here cheering you on!

Thanks for thinking of me, Cheerful! Much appreciated. I have my intake session Wednesday.

I asked if they also have a psychiatrist I can talk to about meds and they assigned me to someone. Maybe they will be a better match for me than my current psychiatrist.

Been having a rough time this week obsessing over this feeling of being an "imposter" patient. I found several articles describing how people with "invisible illnesses" often feel this way when comparing themselves to people whose conditions are more disabling. Maybe I'm not sick, maybe asking for help/accommodation/moral support is inappropriate.

Been reading about people who exaggerate or even completely fabricate health issues for attention, sympathy, or relief from responsibilities. Been scrutinizing my history to see if I've been doing this at all. I don't want to be that kind of person. Am I just looking for an excuse to explain my difficulties managing my life? Because saying I have an illness would be saying that's not entirely my fault. When I feel urges to kill myself are these even serious? I haven't done it yet in all this time, and I hate myself for it; I've become reluctant to reach out when feeling suicidal because I never feel 100% certain that this is the time I'll actually do it. So I might be raising a "false alarm." Stats say most people with suicidal ideation do not actually make an attempt. And many attempts fail, raising questions of "serious" attempts versus cries for help.

Am I mistaking normal mood variations everyone has to deal with for something more extreme than the average? The chronic fatigue, the migraines, the unexplained loss of function in hands and feet...could I be doing it to myself without knowing it? Can it all be psychosomatic?

Because if that's what I'm doing, even without fully realizing or admitting it to myself, I really have just been wasting everyone's time and energy. Thinking this might be a possibility makes me loathe myself. I really need to figure this out.

Also thinking of you and hoping the treatment program is a good match!

I think on some level you know this, but it can be hard to see it when depression is distorting your thinking, so as someone who studies this stuff, let me tell you that what you have described in your posts here is in no way normal mood variations, and it is a real and serious illness for which you need and deserve both good healthcare and accommodations as you work to get well. It is also in no way your fault! It really makes me angry when people make a divide between "physical" and "mental" illnesses and act lake the later are not "real" -- its simply not true. You have a real illness for which you have sought appropriate treatment that you need and deserve.
"Never get separated from your lunch. Never get separated from your friends. Never climb up anything you can't climb down."
–Best Colorado Peak Hikes

the_geneticist

Quote from: Puget on July 06, 2020, 10:34:51 AM
Quote from: smallcleanrat on July 06, 2020, 10:09:41 AM
Quote from: Cheerful on July 05, 2020, 03:23:36 PM
Shout out to smallcleanrat.  Wishing you all the best this week as you start the program.  We're here cheering you on!

Thanks for thinking of me, Cheerful! Much appreciated. I have my intake session Wednesday.

I asked if they also have a psychiatrist I can talk to about meds and they assigned me to someone. Maybe they will be a better match for me than my current psychiatrist.

Been having a rough time this week obsessing over this feeling of being an "imposter" patient. I found several articles describing how people with "invisible illnesses" often feel this way when comparing themselves to people whose conditions are more disabling. Maybe I'm not sick, maybe asking for help/accommodation/moral support is inappropriate.

Been reading about people who exaggerate or even completely fabricate health issues for attention, sympathy, or relief from responsibilities. Been scrutinizing my history to see if I've been doing this at all. I don't want to be that kind of person. Am I just looking for an excuse to explain my difficulties managing my life? Because saying I have an illness would be saying that's not entirely my fault. When I feel urges to kill myself are these even serious? I haven't done it yet in all this time, and I hate myself for it; I've become reluctant to reach out when feeling suicidal because I never feel 100% certain that this is the time I'll actually do it. So I might be raising a "false alarm." Stats say most people with suicidal ideation do not actually make an attempt. And many attempts fail, raising questions of "serious" attempts versus cries for help.

Am I mistaking normal mood variations everyone has to deal with for something more extreme than the average? The chronic fatigue, the migraines, the unexplained loss of function in hands and feet...could I be doing it to myself without knowing it? Can it all be psychosomatic?

Because if that's what I'm doing, even without fully realizing or admitting it to myself, I really have just been wasting everyone's time and energy. Thinking this might be a possibility makes me loathe myself. I really need to figure this out.

Also thinking of you and hoping the treatment program is a good match!

I think on some level you know this, but it can be hard to see it when depression is distorting your thinking, so as someone who studies this stuff, let me tell you that what you have described in your posts here is in no way normal mood variations, and it is a real and serious illness for which you need and deserve both good healthcare and accommodations as you work to get well. It is also in no way your fault! It really makes me angry when people make a divide between "physical" and "mental" illnesses and act lake the later are not "real" -- its simply not true. You have a real illness for which you have sought appropriate treatment that you need and deserve.

You are being courageous and brave. 
Remember, depressed & anxious you is not the real you.  I hope the program and treatment are the start of you become you again.
No, those are not "normal variants" of what everyone feels.  You are obviously in a crisis.  The physical symptoms can absolutely be from the anxiety & depression.  The super simplified explanation is that your body is stressed-out and your "fight, flight or hide" responses are working overtime.

You are not wasting anyone's time.  Your illness is 100% real.  You deserve to feel better.

polly_mer

Quote from: the_geneticist on July 06, 2020, 10:51:50 AM
You are not wasting anyone's time.  Your illness is 100% real.  You deserve to feel better.

Agreed.  Get the help you need, smallcleanrat. 
Quote from: hmaria1609 on June 27, 2019, 07:07:43 PM
Do whatever you want--I'm just the background dancer in your show!

sprout

Smallcleanrat, you may find it helpful to read a bit about High-Functioning Anxiety and Depression.  I think it's easy for those around you to say "Well, scr seems fine, so it must not be that bad."  And even easy to discredit your own feelings with a statement like "If I were really depressed, I wouldn't be able to do all these things."  But being able to put up a good front and continue to do what needs doing doesn't make what's going on inside your head any less real or any easier to fight through.

apl68

Quote from: smallcleanrat on July 06, 2020, 10:09:41 AM

Been having a rough time this week obsessing over this feeling of being an "imposter" patient. I found several articles describing how people with "invisible illnesses" often feel this way when comparing themselves to people whose conditions are more disabling. Maybe I'm not sick, maybe asking for help/accommodation/moral support is inappropriate.

Been reading about people who exaggerate or even completely fabricate health issues for attention, sympathy, or relief from responsibilities. Been scrutinizing my history to see if I've been doing this at all. I don't want to be that kind of person. Am I just looking for an excuse to explain my difficulties managing my life? Because saying I have an illness would be saying that's not entirely my fault. When I feel urges to kill myself are these even serious? I haven't done it yet in all this time, and I hate myself for it; I've become reluctant to reach out when feeling suicidal because I never feel 100% certain that this is the time I'll actually do it. So I might be raising a "false alarm." Stats say most people with suicidal ideation do not actually make an attempt. And many attempts fail, raising questions of "serious" attempts versus cries for help.

Am I mistaking normal mood variations everyone has to deal with for something more extreme than the average? The chronic fatigue, the migraines, the unexplained loss of function in hands and feet...could I be doing it to myself without knowing it? Can it all be psychosomatic?

Because if that's what I'm doing, even without fully realizing or admitting it to myself, I really have just been wasting everyone's time and energy. Thinking this might be a possibility makes me loathe myself. I really need to figure this out.

You sound like you're in a state somewhat like the one I was in several months ago.  Your mind is running out of your control.  You seem to have been unable to reestablish control on your own.  That's where I was in early March.

In my case it took a prescription of an antidepressant--which I was very resistant to taking until I decided I was desperate--to make getting the thoughts back under control possible.  Now I do have a good measure of control over my thoughts, and am glad that I took the steps I took. 

It looks as if you will also need some serious help to regain control.  I will be praying for you that the measures you are taking help you.  Once you start getting a handle on the way your mind works, you'll start finding the things that others tell you you need to be doing much more doable.
God gave Noah the rainbow sign
No more water, but the fire next time
When this world's all on fire
Hide me over, Rock of Ages, cleft for me

mahagonny

Anyone know anything about prednisone and antidepressant induced bipolar symptoms? Mid summer fun! (NOT)

smallcleanrat

Quote from: mahagonny on July 11, 2020, 11:54:13 AM
Anyone know anything about prednisone and antidepressant induced bipolar symptoms? Mid summer fun! (NOT)

Not in detail, other than the fact that it can happen. But I can probably find info for you.

What were you hoping to know? Also, if you have a psychiatrist have you discussed this with them?

mahagonny

#97
Quote from: smallcleanrat on July 11, 2020, 07:32:21 PM
Quote from: mahagonny on July 11, 2020, 11:54:13 AM
Anyone know anything about prednisone and antidepressant induced bipolar symptoms? Mid summer fun! (NOT)

Not in detail, other than the fact that it can happen. But I can probably find info for you.

What were you hoping to know? Also, if you have a psychiatrist have you discussed this with them?

Well, thanks. I've already googled a bit. Planning to get in to a psychotherapist. I told my internal medicine MD primary yesterday I feel manic, talk and write manically online, etc. Music sounds more vivid. It's a little like my mind went to the gym and refuses to come home. Not extreme, but noticeable. And reading about Jane Pauley...she got bipolar late in life after combining antidepressant and steroids. And now the steroids are done, but she's got the ailment for good. It's like the susceptibility was triggered. I probably just need to wait out the taper and maybe get some lorazepam. Apparently prednisone cuts both ways. you can get a serious psychological reaction going on it or going off it. Maybe even both.

smallcleanrat

Quote from: mahagonny on July 11, 2020, 08:25:33 PM
Quote from: smallcleanrat on July 11, 2020, 07:32:21 PM
Quote from: mahagonny on July 11, 2020, 11:54:13 AM
Anyone know anything about prednisone and antidepressant induced bipolar symptoms? Mid summer fun! (NOT)

Not in detail, other than the fact that it can happen. But I can probably find info for you.

What were you hoping to know? Also, if you have a psychiatrist have you discussed this with them?

Well, thanks. I've already googled a bit. Planning to get in to a psychotherapist. I told my GP yesterday I feel manic, talk and write manically online, etc. Music sounds more vivid. It's a little like my mind went to the gym and refuses to come home. Not extreme, but noticeable. And reading about Jane Pauley...she got bipolar late in life after combining antidepressant and steroids. And now the steroids are done, but she's got the ailment for good. It's like the susceptibility was triggered. I probably just need to wait out the taper and maybe get some lorazepam. Apparently prednisone cuts both ways. you can get a serious psychological reaction going on it or going off it. Maybe even both.

Is this new for you? Never experienced it before prednisone?

mahagonny

#99
Quote from: smallcleanrat on July 11, 2020, 08:29:17 PM

Is this new for you? Never experienced it before prednisone?

Don't think so. I've had prednisone numerous times but usually shorter course than this. tapering down to one week of 5 mg/day now. But I can still tell I'm on it. Usually by the time you're down to 5 mg/day, you feel like you've stopped.
I did have a bad reaction to paxil once. That ended up with the police.Then, effexor was bad too. but those are in the past. Now it's zoloft which I seem to tolerate OK.
Of course our new shut in life is probably doing weird things to people. I see so few people in person. And then it's like there's this guy out there on the internet, and he has this active life, and it's me, but then again it's just a bunch of pixels. I'm here in the bedroom.


apl68

One reason I was so resistant to taking an antidepressant was an experience I had with Paxil many years ago.  It made me never want to take anything like that again.  Fortunately they seem to have figured out how to fine-tune medications much better since then.

I'm now in the process of gradually reducing dosages in hopes of winding down this course of treatment.  The main side effect has been losing several more hours a week to sleep.  It's not too high a price to pay.

Mahagonny, what sorts of opportunities do you have to get out?  Are you able to do much walking, or maybe some bicycle riding?  Those activities have always done me a world of good, and they're still doable during a pandemic.
God gave Noah the rainbow sign
No more water, but the fire next time
When this world's all on fire
Hide me over, Rock of Ages, cleft for me

mahagonny

#101
Quote from: apl68 on July 13, 2020, 08:41:01 AM
One reason I was so resistant to taking an antidepressant was an experience I had with Paxil many years ago.  It made me never want to take anything like that again.  Fortunately they seem to have figured out how to fine-tune medications much better since then.

I'm now in the process of gradually reducing dosages in hopes of winding down this course of treatment.  The main side effect has been losing several more hours a week to sleep.  It's not too high a price to pay.

Mahagonny, what sorts of opportunities do you have to get out?  Are you able to do much walking, or maybe some bicycle riding?  Those activities have always done me a world of good, and they're still doable during a pandemic.

I do have a treadmill and a bike and I will get back on the program shortly. Physically exerting activity for 20-30 minutes does help the mind settle down. Today I got the referral thing started so hopefully will see a therapist.
Paxil is associated with aggression and mania. Fortunately I got off paxil, but by then I already a had a criminal complaint and an attorney. (I didn't do anything that awful.)
The thing is, the effects of these strong antidepressants at the onset can be quite different from the real intended effect which consolidates in 4- 6 weeks. So some time later I got on zoloft and the doctor had me increase the dose at such a slow rate that I had to use liquid medicine and a dropper. It worked out. But what an awful taste! Eventually went to pills at 100mg.
Are you sure you need to get off your medications? Maybe you just feel stable because it's working.

apl68

The main side effect I had with Paxil was needing to sleep too much.  Like with this other medicine, only worse.  I guess that's just what these things do to me.

I had gone the better part of a decade without any serious problems with depression.  Then last year I and my family had an extremely bad year.  My mother was seriously injured and took some months to recuperate.  Then I was seriously injured and was off from work for a month.  Then my father had triple bypass surgery for a set of blockages that according to his cardiologist by rights should have killed him (Evidently his body was just too strong to die until they had had a chance to find and fix the problem).  And there were other issues that I won't get into here that were severely psychologically troubling.

All of which is to say that the depression was brought on by circumstances that would have caused depression in just about anybody.  It knocked me so far into a hole that I couldn't climb back out.  Like I said above, I just couldn't regain control of my thoughts.  The idea behind this course of treatments was to help me regain control of my thoughts so that I could regain a right perspective on life.  It seems to have worked.  I was advised to give the course of treatment six months.  It's been about that long. 

So now I'm very gradually reducing dosage.  At this point it's down by close to half.  So far so good.  I'm carefully monitoring my thoughts.  If the draw-down starts to create problems, I'll go back to a higher dosage and consult with my doctor about where to go from there.
God gave Noah the rainbow sign
No more water, but the fire next time
When this world's all on fire
Hide me over, Rock of Ages, cleft for me

mahagonny

#103
Actually my call to the mental health department was a bit of a wakeup call. I had sent an email to my internal medicine guy who's known me for years, Saturday night. By Monday afternoon mental health had heard nothing. They explained 'your primary care doctor has to recommend an appointment for you with us. Whereupon, we will check you insurance plan to see if you are covered. Because you know we wouldn't want you to get stuck with a bill you weren't expecting.' She even mentioned something about a weekly department meeting where things get put in motion (or not). Then she said 'in the mean time keep in touch with your doctor to monitor your condition.' Which is pretty lame. We know he's not gonna sit down with me to talk about my life for 50 minutes. He doesn't do that. I'd be just a well off with Bob Newhart telling me to 'stop it.' The whole tone of the conversation was disengagement. Like she's not expecting it to work out for me. And I have an HMO that's considered pretty decent.

mamselle

I recalled one thread in particular on the old forum, but there are a number of references and experiences recounted about Paxil, Zoloft, etc. there.

This was the one I was thinking of:

   https://www.chronicle.com/forums/index.php/topic,77570.0.html

but there are a number of others, if you use the top "search" bar and ask for replies in order by most recent date.

M.
Forsake the foolish, and live; and go in the way of understanding.

Reprove not a scorner, lest they hate thee: rebuke the wise, and they will love thee.

Give instruction to the wise, and they will be yet wiser: teach the just, and they will increase in learning.