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Posts posted by Saros

  1. Some of the things I've done include skydiving, handling highly venomous snakes, exploring lethally-low oxygen environments, confronting large predators, freeclimbing tall cliffs when alone in backcountry places. I felt a bit alive with each.

    Those active days are gone, depression is worse, and one of the things I occasionally crave besides recovery (or a quick fix), is a thrill. I think about robbing a bank or jewelry store. But I don't want to hurt anybody, so I try and think up victimless crimes. Breaking into the police station and hanging photographs of my vacations on the walls.

    My prior psychiatrist felt it was my body asking for dopamine, and that dovetailed with other indicators.

    My current psychiatrist thinks dopamine is a factor in my depression, but that this is a wild card in a suite of things she otherwise expects.

    What about you?

  2. Welcome to the forums. Don't know how much insight I've gotten here, but the forum usually has some advice and moreover plenty of support and commiseration, while providing a good place to decompress. Good you're being proactive, that seems a real barrier to recovery for a lot of folks. Also quite a few threads detailing how people have gotten on with trying new meds like Wellbutrin, or tapering off Lexapro, and some good info about the value and place of talk therapy. See you around.

  3. No good advice from me at this time, just thought I'd welcome you to the forums. This is a good place for peer support and to vent out. Is the DH up-to-date on how you have been feeling? Like how you feel overwhelmed and feel bad that he is having to do so much? Might help dispel some of that weight if you haven't talked about it recently. I'm not too talented at relationships, though, so grain of salt.

  4. Adding adderall (20mg) to bupropion (450mg) doesn't seem to be efficacious for me after adjusting to dosage. Adderall is just in and out of my system too quickly.

    I'll give it another week or three, worried about going up on dosage, so not anticipating. Next in the plan is drop everything and try an MAOI. We'll see if I go the parnate route myself.

  5. Quit salaried position in field of expertise last year due to depression. Unemployed since then, living on money in the bank. I can't keep doing this forever. Earlier this year, my last psych said it was a bad idea for me to try and get a job again. Not sure what my current psych thinks. She started saying she'll work with me on her rates. But I don't feel good about charity, and then there's rent anyway. Can not turn to family or friends for financial assistance.

    I'm not sure what to do. My post-schooling chosen career, after ~14 years, turned sour. Nevertheless, there are a few private agencies in town that I'm well-suited to per skill set, but they're ultimately inappropriate for me because details details details.

    Not interested in anything anymore, pretty vacant, exhausted like all of you, still hoping I spontaneously evaporate one of these days. Sublimate.

    Do y'all have any advice, having been in a similar situation? I'm in a city of 1.4 million. I can deal with other people just fine, no anxiety or awkwardness, but I have a schizoid personality, and too much rubbing elbows with my fellows isn't healthy for me.

    Still having trouble motivating myself to pay bills, even when I have nothing to do all day and all I have to do is make one phone call. Dishes. Personal hygeine. Getting dressed. Eating. Driver's license 5 or 7 years invalid. Etc. I know you all have dealt with something similar.

    What have you done (or what would you do) having been in a (even if only vaguely similar) situation? Whether rational or irrational, thinking about it makes me feel pathetic and helpless, so I have had trouble confronting the issue. Temp agency? A few times I have tried to simple it down and apply to a local plant nursery I really like, but I get smaller and emptier the closer I get to it. By the time I'm within shouting distance, I can barely turn the wheel or hold my head up. Humbug.

    If you're still reading, thanks very much. If you have a similar story or thoughtful advice you'd like to offer, thanks twice-over.

    edit: has anyone found a job as a paperweight? I could be a rockstar at that job.

  6. ...However, since the most recent onset of depression for me (about a year and a half ago) my faith has wavered and been nearly destroyed. For the first several months of my depression, I consistently did ALL the things that the gospel promises will bring peace and joy...

    Wonsa, I'm not religious, sorry I can't approach the question from that point of view. That being said, I thought this would help you reconcile your feelings and your faith:

    It seems to me you are conflating 'unhappiness' with 'depression'. They aren't the same.

    If you follow them, do the Mormon gospels promise to mend broken bones, stitch torn ligaments, manage asthma, or provide physical rehabilitation following injury?

    Depression is a neurotoxic condition - a diagnosable, physiological condition - not just a sadness waiting to be replaced with something better. If you have not already done so, seek the attention of a mental health specialist. There is probably a social and psychological element to the depression that a strong faith might address, but assume there is also a biological element too. Depression is often comorbid with other diseases. Depressive people can lose the ability to experience pleasure, to be social, suffer from psychoses, suffer from hyper-/in-somnia, average shorter lifespans, and only in part from suicide. Take a look at someone suffering from near complete psychomotor retardation and avolition. I am stressing the potential severity of depression. These people are not just unhappy. They need medical attention.

    Regard your depression as medical - in this case, I don't think it's fair to put the onus of healing upon the Mormon gospels.

    Blame the inability of our language to discriminate when a peer has a bad day and is "feeling depressed" versus someone depressed - major depressive disorder and the like. Too bad "melancholia" didn't catch on.

    Best of luck. Hope something was helpful, and failing that benign.

  7. Thanks LCat. I got to cross it off my list and it was a new experience for me to have, so there's some sort of value in the thing. I'm not upset, just bewildered by the absurdity of the thing.

    I was thinking more about it this morning. It really punctuates for me how poorly understood the mechanisms are for everything categorized under "depression", how different the physiology of the thing may be between people who describe similar symptoms, and how much plain guesswork it is trying to find symptom management based solely on the tools the physician has at hand, some of which may be wholly inappropriate, from benign to harmful.

    I'm not familiar with either field of psychology or psychiatry, and I suppose things have shifted much over the past century, but are both fields still in their infancy? Is psychiatric treatment a 'spray and pray' application? And all the different schools of talk therapy?

  8. You can always tell the therapist what you're looking and hoping for, and ask if they have any recommendations. When I visited my most recent psychiatrist, I told her what I wanted, the options I was willing to try, and I asked her how she runs her practice, how she interacts with her patients, and what her typical treatments are - and what school(s) of therapy. I interviewed her. It's a relief to get those nagging concerns out of the way up front so you don't have to burden yourself with them long term.

    Also keep in mind that therapy can be a long process. Results won't always come as quickly as we'd like. Patience and tenacity are necessary, unfortunately. A few visits to this or that therapist might not be so much, in the long run.

  9. Thoughts?

    Some meds may help you, some may not. As your sister said and as my psychs have said, meds are (generally) a means to give people the tools they need to work through their depression. Though for some people, medication has to be a life-long management of symptoms where treatment of some cause cannot be addressed.

    I would discuss medication with a psychiatrist, and not a general practioner, and get ideas about your context, your history, and what drug (if any) would be appropriate for you. It may be bupropion, it may not. Sometimes it's just guesswork and trial and error. Anhedonia may be proximately caused by this or that thing in the brain, but the ultimate cause can be manifold. A good therpaist might also help you. It's a shot in the dark, but you won't know these things unless you earnestly try them. In my case, I determined the potential benefits of medication outweighed the risks.

    You can try and wait it out. I did, and things just got progressively worse over the years. So I wouldn't recommend that to anyone. I would recommend you see someone and review your options, what methods you have to move forward, your personal concerns (and if a physician can address them), and try and develop a sound plan. You don't have to see a psych and then begin a med schedule the next day. If you do start a med and it has a negative effect, you are free to stop (or wean off it) at any time. And then you can try something totally different, med or no.

    Best of luck.

  10. Hooray, hooray. Took my smallest and last dose this morning. Goodbye effexor, now I'm loaded on fluoxetine to transition back to no serotonergics.

    You made me:

    grind my jaws,


    complete loss of appetite,


    worsened anhedonia,

    gastrointestinal problems,

    sexual dysfunction,

    caused seizures,

    caused hallucinations,

    talking (shouting...) in my sleep ,

    and managed to decouple the bond between my muscles going to sleep and REM - so I wake up in weird places and positions (why am I standing upright on top of my bed?).

    EDIT: I forgot you made me sometimes start dreaming before I was asleep. So weird.

    You get out of here.

    Best of luck to all those for who it has proved efficacious. I am astounded a drug that does this to me makes some people better. How bizzare.

  11. I'd recommend against opioids. Years ago I found they helped me - for a while. They became less effective, and I wanted them more. I haven't had any in a long while, but if they were in front of me I would take a larger than recommended dose without a second thought. If I saw some in a friend's medicine cabinet, I would probably sneak a few. Even though I know better. Addiction and abuse potential are considerable.

    Anyway, decided with psych to go off-label and added mixed amphetamine salts (20mg) to the bupropion (450mg) last week. Got a small glimpse past the anhedonia, as I did when I first started bupropion. Concerned these positive benefits will vanish as they did before, and I'll end up regressing.

  12. Laurenamber-

    I've been on a similar schedule for about a year. Chronic low-quality sleep can exacerbate depression and inhibit recovery. It can also lead to hallucinations and seizures (for some people) (among other things no one wants).

    Having a 9-5 job will really be a kick in the pants to get you on a better cycle. With no job, I try and make appointments and schedule things with peers in the mornings to try and help me get up and maybe reset my clock. Exercise during the day (not at night) helps very much. Finally, and do at least this if nothing else: get 15 minutes or more sunlight a day.

    Some people use melatonin supplements and say they work. I tried them and there was no observable effect. Sleep aids using the same mechanism as antihistamine medication are terrible (for me). YMMV. I may try prescribed sleeping pills soon, they've been offered by my pdoc and sleep is more important than my dislike of pills, I think.

  13. For what it's worth, I wish my depression had lifted after six months. For me, it's either dysthymia, or recurrent major depressive episodes for the last 19 years. I wouldn't know if either is worse, and as LJCat said, 'apples and oranges', just wanted to interject that some folks struggle a deal longer than six months. Thankfully, I've not had any problems with anxiety that I couldn't manage.

  14. Yeah - Abilify is bad. My two recent psychiatrists wanted me to try it, but like you - no insurace. I priced it around $800/mo where I live. I won't be trying that until 2014 or whenever that patent runs out and a generic comes out. I just don't get the cost. How expensive was R&D, and how much profit are they adding on? How much are insurance companies really paying the manufacturer, and can I please pay that cost? Argh...

    Anyway, bupropion has affected my anhedonia - but only in the few days immediately following a new dosage or an increase in dosage. After that it's back to square one.

  15. Setting aside the tragedy to the victims, I felt my stomach churn a bit when I saw the headline "Navy Yard shooter was 'hearing voices' ". Not a good environment to look at the public comments on some news sites. It is very easy to find a LOT of strong opinions about the mentally ill from people who apparently have very little first-hand experience. This is not a time I would admit to my closer peers my struggles, and I feel additional pressure to stay secret about it.

  16. I don't understand how this bothers people. My standard greeting and response at work is "Hey!"

    Some people are so in the dumps that stating out loud "fine, thanks", whether an irrelevant social nicety or not, is a painful needling jab and a constant reminder that things are not good at all. It's not how co-workers or peers are hearing it, it's that you're having to state it.

    Edit: thinking back to when I still had a job, at the end it was difficult to be constantly harassed by suicidal thoughts and participate in obligatory meaningless greetings. I needed all my energy just to focus on getting my work done. There was no "fake it until you make it". I'd suggest your situation might not line up entirely with others', but I'm glad it's been easier for you.

  17. Yuck. I feel like that kind of thing can exacerbate depersonalization. When I'm in those situations I tend to divorce myself more and more from reality so it's easier to go through the motions that you're struggling with. I end up feeling like I'm watching a movie. There's got to be a better way of handling it, but I'm clueless at the moment.

  18. I don't know how much 'mood lift' you can expect out of any pill. I'm on 450 and still feel like absolute rubbish, though my last psychiatrist says I seem much better - so I'm taking her word for it.

    I would much rather be on the smallest effective dose than upping or augmenting before things may have fully run their course. I also tend to value whatever opinion my psychiatrist offers, as we're honest with each other and their are no taboos.

    Good luck sorting things out.

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