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Epictetus

Community Assistant
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Epictetus last won the day on January 9

Epictetus had the most liked content!

About Epictetus

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    Community Assistant

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    Male
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    New Mexico, USA
  • Interests
    Philosophy. Theology. Jainism. Music. Comparative Religion. Poetry. Nature and animals. Fine Arts and Music. Cinema. Travel. Meeting people. Humor and cartoons. Neurobiology. Asian culture. Japan. Flying.
    Philosophical foundations of the natural and social sciences. Dining. Airliners. SimCity 4D. Learning. Aerodynamics. Jet propulsion and jet engine technology.

    Suffer from Depression, Anxiety and Panic Attacks. Also suffer from a hospital-acquired super-infection I am on the antibiotic of last resort and hanging in there. My meds are Citalopram daily and Clonazepam as needed.

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  1. Hi TricKTrapS, Welcome to the Forums. I am pleased to meet you. I am not well today, but on some days I enjoy conversing via the Forums. Hopefully you will find this place a very friendly place.
  2. Hi Lij71400, I have struggled with what you describe before. Nowadays not so much. I think foolish and bad choices form a wide range of values. At one end of that range are those choice made by those, who, like genocidal dictators have sent tens of millions of individuals to extermination camps or set up forced starvation campaigns. To me, those are the ultimate in foolish and bad choices. I have certainly made foolish and bad choices, but nothing I have done in my life has led to the destruction of tens of millions of men, women and children, or millions, or hundreds of thousands, or tens of thousands, or thousands, or hundreds and so on. I have never committed a violent felony. So I try to keep perspective and a sense of balance when I look at my life. It is sometimes the case when people are feeling bad that they compare themselves to the most ideal human beings. But in fairness I think balance requires that people also see how they are doing in relation to those guilty of the worst decisions, evils and crimes. I don't know what you have done or failed to do in your life, but I am absolutely sure that you have not sent tens of millions of men, women and children to extermination camps. You are far, far, far, far, far, far, far, far, far, far, far, far, far, far, far, far, far, far, far, far from having made those kind of "foolish" or "bad" choices. I once talked to a little girl who wanted to end her life because she did not get straight A's on her school report card. She told me she was bad, a failure, a waste of oxygen. She felt a degree of guilt completely out of proportion to the ideal she did not achieve. Perhaps many people are like this. Guilt has a function but it must be proportionate to the act. Being able to maintain perspective and balance are part of fair-mindedness. They are essential to a love of truth and goodness. Excessive guilt is not only unfair to the person concerned but also to fairness and justice itself. Anyway, that is how I deal with the issues you mentioned. Hopefully other members here will see and respond to your post and have more helpful words than my poor words. I wish you only the very best!
  3. Welcome to the Forums, Cris25, It is a pleasure to meet you. I am so very, very sorry that you are beset by so much stress and distress right now. That is really heartbreaking. Hopefully you will find these Forums to be helpful to you. They have helped me a lot with my difficulties. I wish you only the very best!
  4. Welcome to the Forums, Still in Progress. It is very nice to meet you. I am so very sorry that depression afflicts you and has for so many decades. I am also someone who has struggled with depression for decades so I will be interested in whatever you decide to post here. I wish you only the very best.
  5. Hi George11211, I see you differently than you see yourself. Having read many of your posts from before, I have always found you to be a tremendously heroic individual. You are weighed down with such terribly heavy and distressing mental burdens and I find you to be a person of great nobility and stature. It is heartbreaking that others cannot see that. Those now afflicted with such burdens will never understand how heroic it is to bear them. You have always been a great inspiration to me personally. I wish I could help ease the pain that you bear but sadly I struggle against heavy burdens myself. You are an outstanding human being!
  6. Hi Emiro, Welcome to these Forums. I hope you find these to be helpful to you. I will be looking forward to reading anything you post about your life. It is very nice to meet you.
  7. Hi and welcome to the Forums. It is nice to meet you. I would think that the Forum entitled "Depression Central" might be where one would speak about the issues you mentioned. I hope you find these Forums helpful to you.
  8. Hi jeffreyd, I remember you from when you used to post here. I am sorry that things are difficult for you these days. I can definitely identify with that! You are a real fighter and I so admire that. That is just so heroic in my eyes. I was definitely helped by cognitive therapy although I have noticed that there is a kind of superficial cognitive therapy and one that is very deep. Personally speaking, I have been helped most by the very deep form. The really deep form of cognitive therapy is based on two fundamental attitudes that tend to be default attitudes in people. The first attitude is a way of looking at things, a way of looking at oneself and others from the point of view of "could be better but isn't better." It is possible of course to look at anything from this perspective. This way of looking at things tends to engender typical feelings and moods: frustration, aggravation, guilt, anger, disappointment, sadness and sometimes hopelessness. It is would be odd if that point of view did not generate these kinds of moods. Sometimes people "stuck" in this attitude of "could be better, but isn't better" are unable to see that there is another way of looking at things: "could be worse, but isn't worse." If I look at myself or others or things and events in the world from this point of view, my default mood tends towards feeling lucky or blessed, feeling grateful and appreciative, feeling at peace and being able to experience joy of living rather than joyless striving. Pioneers in the field of cognitive psychology noticed that often there was a discontinuity between life circumstances and mood. People from Third World Countries, people in very difficult and unhappy circumstances could be very joyful while those in much better circumstances could be weighed down by profound unhappiness. The pioneers of cognitive psychology found that what distinguished the two groups was often an attitude. Often those living in horrible conditions in Third World countries had as a basic default attitude: "could be worse, but thank goodness it isn't worse." They also found that an attitude of perfectionism "could be better, but isn't better" caused people in much better circumstances to feel miserable, guilty, angry and unhappy. From this deep insight, many of the other insights of cognitive therapy were engendered. Changing one's default attitude is no easy thing. It is not like moving a switch from "on" to "off". It can take years to change, even decades sometimes. I grew up to be a perfectionist. I saw myself and others, things and events and always tended to think: "could be better but isn't better." To become a happier person I had to fight hard to restore some balance in my life. I remember at one point putting little post-its all over my house and car that read "could be worse, but isn't worse, thank goodness." I had to do that to constantly remind myself that my default attitude wasn't the only way of looking at things. Perfectionism as a philosophy tends to reduce all goodness to a single point: perfection. What isn't perfect isn't really good. Perfectionism also makes anything less that perfect, bad. This sort of distorts perspective because it reduces the true range of things and values. Pushed to extremes, if only the perfect is good then all bad acts are equal: not getting straight A's in school can be seen as meriting the same kind of guilt that genocidal dictators could experience at the thought of destroying the lives of tens of millions of men, women and children. Perfectionism tends to the destroy concepts of "better" or "worse" and "more" or "less." And this can do an injustice to the full range of values in life. Being a genocidal dictator and causing the destruction of tens of millions of people is much, much, much worse than failing to get straight A's in school. Some cognitive therapy does not get to the deep level, however, for whatever reason. I found myself helped most by deep cognitive therapy. These are just my personal reflections. I am not sage or authority on these things and I could be quite wrong. I am quite wrong about things to be quite honest. I hope you will get many responses to your post. I really admire your endurance and motivation. Those not struggling against mental health issues will never understand how heroic that is. I hope your time here will be helpful to you. Sorry if I was unable to be helpful. Sometimes one can not be very helpful even when one tries. I wish you only the best!
  9. Hi Xulybeated and welcome to the Forums! What medication are you taking? I'm so sorry that things have not been going well for you. It is so utterly heartbreaking that you lost your mother and that your cat ran away. I am so very, very sorry. I can't even imagine how devastating those experiences must be for you. Suffering losses like that can make treatment difficult sometimes I think. Stress can sometimes affect how medicines for mental illness work. And sources of stress can sometimes not be obvious. Loss can be a terrible stressor, but sometimes there can be less obvious stressors in a person's life. To give one example, people who tend to be perfectionists can be under a great deal of stress and not be aware of it. Many people have a kind of default attitude of "could be better and is not better." Looking at themselves, others and things in general from this perspective can generate a great deal of internal stress and give rise to disappointment, aggravation, frustration, anger, guilt and sadness. This can perhaps affect how well a medication works. To continue a bit with this example, people whose default attitude tends to be "could be worse, but isn't worse" see themselves, others and things in general from a different perspective which tends to generate quite different thoughts, feelings and moods: feeling lucky, feelings of gratitude and appreciation, peace of mind and joy of living. People with this outlook might respond better to mental health medications because they are less stressed generally speaking. Of course one can look at oneself from either perspective: "could be better" or "could be worse." But the different perspectives generally engender quite different states of mind. Being distressed or under stress from any cause probably affects how well a mental health medication works. This is just my opinion and I am not a physician or medical health professional so I cannot really offer you anything that you could or should reply upon. Hopefully whatever medication you are taking will lead to the very best possible outcome. I hope you will find these Forums helpful to you in your struggles. I think you are very heroic in working to get the better of the ills that beset you and weigh down upon you. People like you are a great inspiration to people like me who are also struggling against things that weigh heavily upon us. I want to wish you the very, very best and thank you for sharing what is happening in your life. That helps me and so many others here feel less isolated and alone with our own personal anguish and grief!
  10. Hi EL23, It is very nice to meet you. Bipolar depression can be so brutal. I am very, very sorry it afflicts you and especially now when it is proving to be such a miserable and heavy burden. I wish I knew what to say that would help ease the pain of it. Hopefully these Forums will prove to be a warm, welcoming and friendly place for you where you can meet many others struggling with the same or similar things. I am afflicted with unipolar depression but have heard that bipolar depression is really awful. My heart goes out to you!
  11. I really don't know since I haven't been keeping up on those kinds of things. Hope others can be helpful to you.
  12. Hi CaityJuju, I am really sorry you are in the unhappy situation you outlined. It sounds just awful and I am only reading about it. I can't even imagine what it must be like to you to be living it. Many of the things you wrote of are things I can identify with from sad personal experience. I sure hope things get better for you somehow and soon too. You deserve a good life, a life where you can feel fulfilled and where people will treasure you. Hopefully these Forums will be of some help to you in your struggles. Sometimes it is only those going through the same or similar things who can understand.
  13. I am very sorry you are having these unhappy experiences. A visit to a physician might be helpful to you. I was in a situation similar to what you described and a doctor helped me so much, really changed my life. really saved my life! Suicidal ideation is often the symptom of brain pathology. One cannot always get better on one's own without the help of a caring physician. Please call a crisis hotline for real help. None of us here are crisis counselors and we wouldn't want anything bad to happen to you. I hope you will be okay and not to come to harm. If I was a crisis counselor I would talk to you and help you in person, but sadly I am not qualified and able to help in this way. If things start spiraling out of control please go to a hospital emergency room. They can help. You deserve the help of medical professionals and not just fellow sufferers of mental illness like we are.
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