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About epic_sky

  • Birthday 08/03/1977

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    Southern California

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  1. Hi Graymouse, No, it is not your fault. You have depression and anxiety (and you're also a teenager in high school, which is difficult enough already) which are both legitimate medical conditions largely outside your control. That is nothing to feel ashamed of or guilty about and you have done nothing wrong, I promise. :: I think you should give the medication some time to work. It takes a while to build up in your system, so wait and see what happens. Keep on talking with your therapist/counselor/etc. You can also work on changing your thoughts and/or how you respond to them, since you seem open to the idea. CBT (cognitive behavioral therapy) has been really helpful for a lot of people in that regard, including myself, and I bet your therapist could guide you along those lines as well. I was once a teenager with severe anxiety and depression, so I know exactly how you feel right now. Please don't get down on yourself for feeling this way, however. You're ahead of the game because you've already asked for help and are getting it, and that is such a positive sign. :-)
  2. What worked for me (and what I learned in CBT many years ago) was to keep a little spiral notebook and pen with me at all times, and every time I had a negative thought or feeling about myself I would write it down and analyze it, work it through. Seeing my feelings on paper somehow made them easier to deal with and counteract, and also less huge and scary and true. This approach worked really well for me for quite a long time, and I highly recommend it. I also try to look at it like this: If my best friend/sister/niece, etc. was having this experience and feeling this way, how would I react? What would I say to make them feel better? And then I try to treat myself the same way I would treat them (which is, inevitably, a LOT more kindly). I used to have that same knee-jerk reaction to criticism, even the constructive kind, and would immediately believe that every bad thing someone said about me was true. But you know what? I realized after many years that it isn't all true, and what's most important is that I understand that, even if the other person never does.
  3. The first antidepressant I ever tried was Celexa. It helped a lot in regards to my depression, but it made my ears ring and I couldn't fall sleep at night, so I wasn't on it for very long. Once I stopped taking it the ringing stopped. These meds are so weird in the different ways they can affect us. I wouldn't worry about it just yet, unless of course it really bothers you. It could easily be one of those bizarre side effects, only time will tell.
  4. Oh, wow, I have the exact same problem. I forget words, I smash words together when I speak, I stumble over sentences, I lose track of my thoughts and have a hard time verbalizing them correctly (unless, as you said, I slow down and focus and make multiple attempts). This doesn't happen all the time, not every single day, but certainly often enough to be noticeable (especially to me). None of my friends or family have ever mentioned it, at least not to my face, but it's impossible to miss and hasn't gone away. I feel like a complete moron when it happens, it's very embarrassing. This has been going on for... I'd guess at least three years now. I've had a severe anxiety disorder since birth and major depression for a solid ten years (at least), so I tend to think this is probably a symptom of my brain finally starting to crack under the strain. Which is not... really comforting, of course, but makes a lot of sense. :-/
  5. HUGE THANKS to all of you for responding so quickly and with so much support! I can't tell you how much it meant to me. Tim 52, Epictetus, and taysmom1016, thank you so so much for your kind words, you ALL helped me today. I can't emphasis that enough. Just being told that I have a right to my feelings, however silly I might think they they are, is truly a gigantic relief. Thank you, thank you. pinto77, what you described in your post is pretty much EXACTLY what I've been experiencing, but you explained it in a much clearer and more concise (and, imo, braver) way. I look at my niece and feel sad, not only because her true childhood days are behind her but also because looking at her makes me reflect on my own life and the time that's passed, all the wrong choices I've made, opportunities lost and/or wasted, that broad horizon of childhood "promise" I once also had but never fulfilled because my own screwed up brain derailed me long ago. My niece is an artist, as I once was, but she has the ability to actually make something of that talent, and as happy and proud as I am of her, it's also incredibly painful and upsetting to think about. I also agree with you about children triggering feelings of self-reflection and loss, that's been my exact experience. Sometimes I think I need to find another job for that reason alone. Epictetus, I also wanted to add that a very close friend of mine was once in a similar situation as you in regards to medication. It was not for an infection, but it was a "absolute last resort" sorta thing that could possibly have killed her at any time. She survived, thankfully, and I believe that you will too, but I'll never forget how scary that situation was and I'm sending all my best thoughts your way. I've read many of your posts on this forum and I think you are a wonderful person and an invaluable member of this community. Before I'd even read it, just seeing your name in response to my post lifted my spirits. Please hang in there!
  6. So here's an anxiety issue I haven't read about anywhere else and though I feel ridiculous even admitting this, it's REALLY bothering me today and I was wondering (hoping, desperate to know) if anyone can relate. Preface: I'm single, I have no children. I harbor no expectations that I ever WILL have children, mostly because of my mental health issues. Most of the time I'm fine with that, most of the time I don't even want any. I know, rationally and logically, that I am someone who never should have children and that it's better for everyone (ie, myself as well as any hypothetical kids) that I don't. I work at an elementary school (which means I'm constantly around OTHER people's kids instead) and have two nephews and a niece (6th grade, 4th grade and 2nd grade) who happen to attend the same school. We also live about a mile apart, so between work and home I see them every day and we're all extremely close and always have been. I'm incredibly lucky, I know, to have these relationships and the ability to nurture them, but here's what's bothering me: Today is my niece's twelfth birthday, and I am FREAKING OUT. The passage of time is a huge, screaming trigger for me and no matter how many birthdays and holidays go by it never gets any easier. Simply watching kids at work get older stresses me out (there are many other sixth graders, aside from my niece, who I've known since they were tiny little kindergartners), and the end and beginning of every school year is a huge mental ordeal for me. One of my nephews lost his first tooth on Friday and I just about cried, so between that and my niece's birthday today I am really in a state. I just can't handle the thought of these kids getting older, it's causing me intense anxiety and sadness. Over the past 10 years or so time itself has become a GIGANTIC trigger for me and I don't know how to deal with it, I don't know how to get over it. I've done some research and Chronophobia is the closest I've ever come to an actual name for this feeling (although I'm not elderly and I've certainly never been in prison!). Birthdays and holidays and other major life events (weddings, funerals) are intensely difficult for me and I can't seem to cope. In fact, I'd say I'm getting worse. Happy memories make me sad, and I can't even stand to look at old pictures. I'm sure this has something to do with my crushing existential anxiety and my fears and regrets over the things I've lost and the time I've wasted because of my mental illnesses, but has anyone else experienced this?? I've never admitted it to anyone before and I feel ridiculous about it, like I don't even have the right to these feelings since I'm "just" an aunt, not an actual parent, but good god... these feelings are just too much.
  7. I was on that exact same RX (although it was the generic version) for for 2-3 months or so, back in 2009. It was the last in a long line of meds I tried before losing my insurance, so I don't know how many of my withdrawal symptoms were a result of the Effexor XR alone. I stopped completely cold-turkey without any kind of gradual step-down (I think your plan is better). What I remember most about that time - and something I haven't experienced with any other medication - are the "brain zaps," which lasted a solid week at least and were very bizarre to experience. I don't know exactly how to describe them, except to say that sometimes it felt like my entire head was trying to bounce off in one direction while the rest of my body was heading in another. I was also pretty fatigued and had quite the hormonal surge there for awhile. I was amazed, though, by how much physically better I felt after dropping the Effexor XR. It took a few months to clear out of my system, but I had no idea how sick it had made me feel until I stopped taking it. You haven't been taking it for very long and I'm certainly no expert, but I would assume (hope!) your withdrawal won't be as dramatic. YMMV, of course. ;)
  8. Hi Elevenoceans, I have had the exact same experience, multiple times. Deep dark depression followed by a sudden crazy upswing with a lot of the same symptoms you describe. I don't know that I would consider my own experiences full-blown "mania," but they definitely aren't normal and I've learned over time not to take myself too seriously or make any really important/drastic decisions when I'm in that state of mind. On the flip side, I have also learned to use it to my advantage a bit and get things done that I normally would be too depressed to tackle otherwise, so I guess it's kind of a mixed bag. I agree with the other posters, though: if it worries you, you should talk to your doctor (or maybe get a second opinion?). I've never talked to anyone about my own symptoms (lack of insurance slows me down) but I know I should take my own advice here. I don't think I'm full-on Bipolar, but I've done enough research to possibly suspect Bipolar II. Whatever the cause, it can be a really unsettling experience and I sympathize completely.
  9. Hi ArthurP, I'm very new to this forum, but I wanted to say that I relate SO MUCH to almost everything you've written here, especially in regards to being triggered off by work, feeling guilty about your emotions, and comparing your troubles to other people's (and finding them lacking). I experience all of those things myself, practically on a daily basis, and god - it's awful. I purposefully avoid certain coworkers because I know they're going to want to talk (ie, complain, gossip, etc.) about work, and hearing all of that causes me a huge amount of anxiety that I simply can't handle any more. I want to be supportive and I want to be polite, but like you, it tears me up inside to listen. I won't even talk about what goes on at work when I'm at home because it's too triggery and will ruin my mental state for hours. I often compare my problems to other people's and scold myself for believing I have any problems at all. That's a huge, HUGE issue for me. Just the other night I found out that a childhood friend of my sister's (who I also knew, in a second-hand sort of way) just lost her 5-month old daughter to MRSA, which she contracted while confined to the NICU, and I felt sick to my stomach for HOURS afterward, mentally beating the crap out of myself for daring to imagine that I felt bad about MY situation. I guess what I'm trying to say is that I understand, and it's so, so hard. I try to tell myself that we are ALL entitled to our feelings, no matter where they come from or what they are, and that we each have our own, personalized crosses to bear and demons to fight. Some people's are a LOT more obvious and visible than others, but that doesn't make our own emotions any less valid.
  10. I hope you had a fantastic day :)

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