Living with Depression

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  1. Julia Martinez profile image54
    Julia Martinezposted 13 years ago

    I am 41 and was diagnosed with clinical depression over four years ago.  I have learned to accept that medication will be part of my life and have come to terms with the fact that I do not have the coping skills that most people have.  I am married and raising four children; all of this has been ok.  I did not have a good childhood and I promised myself that I would never let my children see what depression could do to someone and thier family.  I encourage anyone who feels like their life is out of control to see a doctor and see what is wrong, the worst thing you could do is let a problem go and find out later it could have been taken care of.

    1. Justine T profile image58
      Justine Tposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      I an many people in my familey have this kind of problem but is medication realy an answer. I think that many of thees fellings that most were just born with that we have to deal with everday ..... i mean some of it would come from a bigger problem like adictions, alcohalizm and more but were does it end

      1. mattieneal profile image60
        mattienealposted 13 years agoin reply to this

        Honestly Medication is needed in most cases because many suffer from a chemical imbalance which the medication offers for the brain and evens out the chemicals within the brain. I have done a lot of research myself as far as majoring in psychology. I am not a doctor yet but soon will be so I feel as a patient and student yes medication is needed in most cases...

        1. profile image0
          Amie Warrenposted 13 years agoin reply to this

          There has been no scientific study ever, anywhere, at anytime that proves that mentally ill people have a chemical imbalance. That's a hype started by the drug companies to sell pills.

          Most people who suffer from depression can be "cured" with vitamin therapy, cognitive (talk) therapy or exercise therapy.

          I got off of anti-depressants years ago because the side effects were worse than the depression.  I started researching and found that I was probably deficient in magnesium.  I started taking extra magnesium and in three months, my depression was gone, and has never returned.

          I know you'll make a lot of money pushing dangerous pills onto innocent people. I hope you enjoy spending it, knowing that you are probably doing more harm than good.

          1. nikki1 profile image59
            nikki1posted 13 years agoin reply to this

            Correction: some mentally ill patients may have a chemical
            imbalance. You really can't say that. There are millions
            of types of mental challenges in this world. And, some rx.s
            out there, do work prescribed correctly.

          2. schoolgirlforreal profile image79
            schoolgirlforrealposted 13 years agoin reply to this

            I would like to get off my meds but it seems too complicated (after 18yrs
            any thoughts on that?

            1. nikki1 profile image59
              nikki1posted 13 years agoin reply to this

              why do u want to get off ur rx. r they not helping with your
              challenges? Have your discussed this with your family and
              family Dr.? Why r u taking the rx.?

      2. donotfear profile image84
        donotfearposted 13 years agoin reply to this

        Sometimes medication is an aid to recovery. We're all wired differently, some cope, some don't. Yes, we do have to learn to deal with feelings & emotions. But if you've never been clinically depressed, then you wouldn't truly understand. Some people self medicate by using drugs & alcohol. So whos's to say it's not the depression causing the addictions? Or is the addiction causing the depression? Not for us to answer, only the individual can say. This particular form of illness (mental illness/addiction) is called Dual Diagnosis.

    2. mattieneal profile image60
      mattienealposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      Acknowledgment is the first step and getting the help needed is the next and following through with it is the final step. Be proud because there are many people who do not realize they need help and it took myself years to get the help I needed. I am great full I did and very proud when you see stories such as this turn out good. Congrats!!! If ever I can help in any way feel free to ask...

    3. double_frick profile image60
      double_frickposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      i was dxd with bipolar when i was 16 and heavily medicated. it did nothing good for me, thats for sure. in fact, i blame the medication for some of the problems i have now that i didn't have before.
      now, i'm not one to say i deny my illness(es) while denying medication, i fully accept that i'm 'crazy' as i term it. its hard to pin down. lol
      IF you can use a little medication to take off the edge so you can learn to cope with your new chemical induced brain ride then medication will do its job, however, most end up zombified and in a drug-daze enough not to be crying or obviously upset but then of course those are doomed to a life of permanent drugs and permanent daze. sad is that fog of medication any better than the depression itself? what about the side effects caused by the medication? doesn't the drug or medication you are taking exacerbate the chemical imbalance in an erratic manner?? because when that happened to me of course they insisted the meds needed to be adjusted and we all know what that means.
      for myself, and this may not apply to all, its not worth it.
      being bipolar, which is admittedly harder than just depression if i do say so myself, and now borderline and who knows what else, i shudder to think what the doctors would say now. but, i honestly FEEL better than  i did on meds. and even though i'm more moody i'm learning to overcome my habits and reactions to my feelings as well as learning to anticipate and avoid triggers for my moods.

      but for some, meds can be better.

      1. Ms Chievous profile image68
        Ms Chievousposted 13 years agoin reply to this

        I hate when docs give diagnosis as a teen.  We could all be diagnosised as bipolar when we are teenagers!  I hope you have gone back to the doc since to confirm this dx. Bipolar is hard!!

        1. wychic profile image80
          wychicposted 13 years agoin reply to this

          Agreed! I have had various doctors say all sorts of things about what I might or might not have, and certain parts of my family are still trying to prove that I'm mentally unstable because of it. Here's a diagnosis -- I was 14. I've had challenges in adulthood, some were easier than others, and I was in a bad marriage that made me very unhappy...these things don't mean that I'm crazy. Yes, I get depressed sometimes, especially in the winter or on overcast days, but I cope with it. Try convincing people that as a mother in my 20s I'm a far different person than I was when I was a freshman in high school on screwy meds...those who know me know it's true, but those who are merely related to me think that everything I say or do is merely proof of my insanity.

        2. profile image0
          Amie Warrenposted 13 years agoin reply to this

          Amen! Since when did giving children dangerous chemicals equal good medicine. My brother was thrown out of school at age 8 and not allowed to return until my mother put him on Ritalin. The teacher told her that he had to be on Ritalin, and my mother asked her to show her her medical degree. He was tested 5 times, and no doctor could find enough evidence to put him on Ritalin, so the school made her go to THEIR doctor, who prescribed it like candy.  He reacted so badly to the Ritalin that he ended up in the hospital, and expelled from school for the age 8!!! 

          My mom, bless her soul, packed us up and moved us away to another state, homeschooled my brother for two years, and he ended up graduating two years ahead of what would have been his class at the other school. 

          Ritalin is a very dangerous amphetamine, and IMHO, should NEVER be given to children.

    4. oxycontinworld profile image60
      oxycontinworldposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      Always keep your options open when dealing with depression and continue to do what works.  There are numerous causes and numerous treatments.  Finding the treatments that work best for you is always an individual journey that doesn't stop when symptoms remit.

    5. TheGlassSpider profile image64
      TheGlassSpiderposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      Julia, I am very sorry to hear about the suffering you've endured while dealing with depression. I could be wrong, but it sounds like you might feel resigned to taking medication long-term and that you don't like it. It also sounds like you are resigned to not having coping skills.

      But! It sounds like you have very strong love for your family, great protective instincts regarding your children, and you are willing to seek help--indeed it is wonderful that you've had the courage to share your story and encourage others who are suffering to seek help.

      There is more good news! You might not necessarily HAVE to use medication for your entire life if you don't want to (although I clearly understand that it has helped you, and I'm glad)...there may be other options available such as nutritional changes, exercise regimens, therapy, and more. And the great thing about coping skills is that they can be learned...with practice, they can become habit and help you fight off the symptoms of a depressive episode as they're beginning. "Clinical Depression" is a sort of general term, and understanding exactly what your doctor means by it may give you some information about different treatment options. There are many things you can learn about what might be helpful to your individual situation by understanding more about your specific diagnosis and how your medical practitioner reached it. I encourage you, if you are not thrilled about taking meds long-term, to talk more with your doctor (or a counselor or psychologist) about the specifics of your diagnosis, other options that may be available to you, and the risks and benefits of each of those options.

      I wish you the best of luck!

    6. profile image0
      Justine76posted 13 years agoin reply to this

      glad your getting help. it is ok.  smile

  2. profile image0
    Miss Takeposted 13 years ago

    medication can sure help........ positivity openess and sharing also help so much.  One of the biggest miseries is feeling alone.

  3. profile image58
    Alexpteposted 13 years ago

    Medicine can really help but there are other techniques that can help with depression too. I'm sure you've already asked your doctor about them but it might be worth bringing up alternative treatments. I hope you get better soon.

  4. Sage Williams profile image61
    Sage Williamsposted 13 years ago

    I suffered with depression most of my life.  Childhood as well as adulthood.  I was diagnosed with major depression in my adult life.  I was on a very high dose of anti depressants for three or four years and was told that I probably would need to take them for the rest of my life.

    Thanks to therapy, writing and support groups as well as alternative treatments.  The medicine provided me with a foundation so that I was able to do the work that I needed to in therapy.  Without this foundation, I probably would have never gotten there.

    Today, I am happy to say that I have been med free for probably 10 years.  Am very happy.  Never in my wildest dreams did I ever think I would be where I am at today.

    Beside the meds - Writing, therapy and support groups worked best for me.


  5. Jewels profile image84
    Jewelsposted 13 years ago

    How quickly people reach for the meds!  How about attempting to address the underlying cause while you are on the meds?  A lifetime of medication sounds horrid.  Chemical imbalances are caused by diets also, living environment - both physically and emotionally.  How about addressing these first.  I dread to see our world in 20 years time - all medicated and brain stupified. And how quickly doctors reach for the prescription pad because they have no time to really help a person.

  6. Mekenzie profile image80
    Mekenzieposted 13 years ago

    I thank God that we live in a day and age where there is an understanding of clinical depression.  The medication replaces the chemicals the brain has STOPPED producing... causing the clinical depression.

    Years ago when a person got clinically depressed they were put in a mental institution.  In many many cases they never got out but were institutionalized for life.

    Many people can get off the meds in time with intense therapy and group support.  With help they can get to the root of the issues and instense pain that have caused the brain to shut down and stop producing the needed chemicals.

    Many people who've not been there (clinically depressed)do not understand that the person CANNOT work through any issues if their brain is shut down and they can't think, they hate life and have no desire to live.  Medication will stablize the brain so a person can think and work through their life issues...

    1. profile image0
      Amie Warrenposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      Once more, there has NEVER been a study that proved that chemical imbalance exists.  NEVER EVER!!!

  7. Izzy Anne profile image60
    Izzy Anneposted 13 years ago

    Medication helps, but even psychiatrists would say that medicine is best used together with some form of therapy.  It is not an either/or issue.  Beating depression is not a race.  Take your time and be kind to yourself.

  8. Ms Chievous profile image68
    Ms Chievousposted 13 years ago

    I think the point here is that taking medication does not make you less of a person.  Realizing that there is a problem and doing something about it is very admirable. 

    However, medication is not the whole answer.  There are many other factors to consider when treating depression.  Incorporating diet and plenty of exercise into your routine is key to happiness.  If you have some addictions ( cigs, alcohol, gambling) then addressing those are key too.  Therapy is a must to help you get to the heart of the matter.
    also try fish is great for your mood!

  9. Daniel Carter profile image63
    Daniel Carterposted 13 years ago

    Ms Chievous is right. Taking meds is fine and everyone's journey and how they deal with what they are given in life is different. We usually find the answers and help we need at the time we need them, and for some meds are good, for others, there are other ways of dealing with it.

    I'm intimately familiar with depression. I was on meds. It was the right thing at the right time. But it's complex. While some circumstantial and emotional things can be healed with counseling, Cognitive Behavior Therapy (Dr. Burns' book "Feeling Good") and awareness practices, there often still lies biochemical imbalances that must be addressed. How to address them is an individual thing.

    The facts and truth are that long-term use of meds can yield some unpleasant side effects, but it's an individual's right to decide whether or not the benefits outweigh the drawbacks. However, for the record, there is more and more evidence that biochemical imbalances that cause things like depression, ADD, bipolar, autism, etc., can be corrected in many cases (over time with great perserverence) by nutritional supplementation. That said, it's no easy stroll through the park. One must be vigilant in cleaning up digestion and assimilation issues, as well as weaning off meds, which can be a horrible process.

    One test for biochemical depression is to simply take a few Vit D caps along with fish oil caps before bedtime. Usually if you wake up feeling better, it's because your brain got some nutrients it needed. It's an indicator. It's not a cure-all. The process to overcoming biochemical imbalance is a tough one. That's why some people who try this route go back to meds.

    But again, it's important to realize that healing is an individual process. I have found it to be much wiser and much more compassionate to answer questions sincerely and factually, but support the path the individual takes, as long as it isn't harmful, and is based in fact.

    For what it's worth, I was on 11 different meds for several years, and have been able to wean and stay off of them. But my eating patterns, exercise, and the supplements I take, like amino acids, etc., do make a big difference. Plus I spent a lot of time with a great counselor.

    We can choose our quality of life. It just takes a lot of work, no matter which way we go.

  10. wychic profile image80
    wychicposted 13 years ago

    I was diagnosed when I was 14, went into inpatient care for a while when they put me on Paxil (they did not yet know about the unfortunate consequences of this in teens...I found out the hard way), then worked over the next three years to get off of medication. This transition was overseen very closely by an awesome therapist, and being on the meds definitely helped me focus on where the friction points were in my life and made it possible to work through them. I hate being dependent on anything so it was a big thing for me to get off the meds, but they definitely had their place in my therapy.

    That said, most of the mental health professionals I saw insisted that I would not be able to come off of the meds and live a normal life, ever. Luckily, my inpatient time was done in an institution that really stresses coping skills rather than medication, so I got to learn from the best professionals in the region.

    Today I have been med-free for almost 7 years (if I'm counting right) and continue to be successful in it. By successful, I don't mean that the depression has gone hasn't, but now it's manageable, for the most part. I was able to work on my physical health to eliminate some of the bad feelings, then utilized a number of coping skills (which I have detailed in a hub, so I won't put them all here) and now can usually stop the downswing with vigorous exercise or relaxation time. During the winter I still have SAD issues, but I have an exceedingly patient husband who understands and works with me through the bad days...even if it means just containing the damage until I feel better tongue.

    Some people may do better staying on the meds, but I personally believe that there are options for pretty much everyone if you have the desire. Docs get paid for medication monitoring, so if you have one that's in it for the money they'll convince you how much they need it, but with the right professional and an excellent support group in family and friends, there are ways to live a perfectly fulfilling life without it.

    1. Ms Chievous profile image68
      Ms Chievousposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      I used to work with teens and I thought a lot of times it was really unnecessary for meds to be prescribed. Being overly emotional is a part of adolescense! I am glad Wychic you were able to cope with your issues instaed of just medicating them! Thanks for sharing...

    2. profile image0
      Amie Warrenposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      I was on Paxil for a month, quit cold turkey because no one had admitted it was addictive yet. I thought I would die from the withdrawal!  Paxil is dangerously addictive, and should be taken off the market.

  11. skyfire profile image81
    skyfireposted 13 years ago

    Some of the ways to get rid of depression:

    - help others (charity, online whatever keep mind engaged)
    - spend time with pets
    - help and spend time with kids, old people
    - when you get stress change the topic that bothers you
    - music(whatever you like)
    -vacation(whenever you get high stress,drop the work and take some time out of you)..

    1. donotfear profile image84
      donotfearposted 13 years agoin reply to this

      Very good coping skills listed here. Hard to get in action when depressed, but they WORK. Good information.

  12. cheaptrick profile image74
    cheaptrickposted 13 years ago

    I was prescribed the antidepressant"Zyprexa"for intermittent bouts of depression.
    One year latter I was diagnosed with"Brittle Diabetes".
    It was discovered that this drug caused Diabetes in some patients.
    A class action suit involving 7 thousand people followed.
    The Lilly corp settled for 700 hundred million dollars which was distributed according to severity.
    The end of "Zyprexa"?NO!
    They added Diabetes as a possible side effect which absolved them of future liability and kept right on selling it.

  13. nikki1 profile image59
    nikki1posted 13 years ago

    hope this helps. Meditation also helps.
    As well as yoga. Stretching your body slowly
    legs and etc.. to soothing music in the
    background or classical music.. it also
    helps if you have eucalyptus scent in the
    background as well. Opens up your lungs,.
    smile peace to all wink
    If you believe in God pray to him. Give
    him your sadness,. Join your local church.

  14. nikki1 profile image59
    nikki1posted 13 years ago

    Bonding with your family and with your family doctor. We are root'n for ya.

  15. Mikeydoes profile image44
    Mikeydoesposted 13 years ago

    Being happy or depressed is ultimately up to you. Its hard, but you can make the changes if you tried hard enough.

    Find what makes you happy, not depressed. I know a couple people who just love to live their life miserable, it really upsets me.

    The more you think about something the madder it makes you and the more it becomes apart of your life. This may not be true for everyone, but in a lot of the cases.. It just seems to be the person.

  16. wilsonallen01 profile image59
    wilsonallen01posted 13 years ago

    I agree with your views.

    Thanks for sharing the post


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