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I'm here so I can be around other depressives. Hopefully I can find some support and not feel so isolated in this feeling. 

About me, slightly: I'm from the United States and moved to Germany about 5 years ago. I'm a musician/artist and am lucky to haven't had a real job in many years. So I consider myself successful, when I think about it objectively. Also, I do good things for others. I try to be generous and supportive. I'm a hilarious person. People tend to like me. All good, right? But I have chronic depression that I've tried to treat it for decades; multiple talk therapies, multiple medication, meditation, exercise. Nothing seems to work and I continue to feel less than worthless. I don't ever feel happy, just less depressed or just flat inside. 

When people without depression give advice, it's often with the idea that deep down inside we all love ourselves. At my core I feel as if I hate myself. Feeling worthless is a positive, because then I don't feel like I am harmful to the world. If I'm harmful to the world, well then wouldn't the world be better off without... well you can see what that line of thinking goes. It's my litmus test, because when I feel that way I know I need to drop everything and put 100% into being good to myself. Lately that feeling has been happening a lot. 

Depression is a lie, and it is the most convincing liar you will ever meet. It's like having a a know-it-all dude, sprawled out on my couch as he delivers an non-stop commentary on what a loser I am. I've been able to partially separate that from me, which gives me a little space to breathe. Sometimes it actually gets funny because it's just so non-stop negative that it's ridiculous. Another aspect of depression is the physical symptoms: my body aches, my stomach hurts, food is disgusting. I have very little energy, I feel like I can't concentrate on things I should, and even if I enjoy something I don't really enjoy it.

My last shrink diagnosed me as Bipolar II and put me on Lamotrigine and Sertraline. It worked for a while, especially with regard to the hypomania. I don't do the crazy risk-taking stuff as much. That's a relief. But it's never taken out the depression, just lessened it a bit. I've played around with the dosages enough to tell what Sertraline does for me. It helps me to concentrate, somewhat, and it makes it easier to ignore the negative know-it-all-dude sitting on a couch in the middle of my brain. But I can't say that I ever really feel happy, and I feel like it's working less and less lately. I've been on this cocktail for 6 or 7 years.

Ok, this is enough babbling for an introductory post. It's long, and I apologize for that. 

I look forward to meeting some of you. 

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Greetings right back to our new friend.

We all have unique perspectives on depression.

My approach is to counteract the debilitating effects of depression with clever and powerful metaphors.

Invoking metaphors changes our brain chemistry ever so slightly.

I just feel we are not helpless confronting Old Man Depression and we can play a trick or two right back when we find ourselves lost and trapped within.

Keep posting your concerns and we will try to help.

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5 minutes ago, Oscar K said:

Greetings right back to our new friend.

We all have unique perspectives on depression.

My approach is to counteract the debilitating effects of depression with clever and powerful metaphors.

Invoking metaphors changes our brain chemistry ever so slightly.

I just feel we are not helpless confronting Old Man Depression and we can play a trick or two right back when we find ourselves lost and trapped within.

Keep posting your concerns and we will try to help.

Hi Oscar K, 

thanks for saying hi, it's nice to meet you.

That's an interesting approach, and I like the idea of using a literary device to change my brain chemistry, because I do think the brain is ever changing. 

Can you give an example of a metaphor you might use? 

I agree, we aren't helpless towards Old Man Depression. I just wish I didn't have such antipathy towards myself. I've started thinking about (non-religious) forgiveness, as maybe a way of learning to be nicer to myself. 

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One metaphor that has helped me is the "cave" metaphor .

A cave is natural formation created by erosion, stress and upheaval. (Sound familiar?)

A cave is a great place for temporary shelter but not so good for long term residence.

I give myself permission take temporary shelter in my secret hideaway but I must stay close to the ENTRANCE/EXIT.

Obviously depression isn't a cave but metaphorically it sure is.

We all have unlimited access to needed metaphors because they only exist when we imagine, pretend and make believe them into existence.

Hope this helps a little.

Always willing to discuss the power of clever metaphors or as I like to call them: CLEVERFUL MEDaphors.

Oscar

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I can understand that. It's a good metaphor. 

I guess I have one, which is that my moods are like the weather. They can change quickly and unpredictably. If a storm comes on I try hunker down at home and ride it out. You can't argue with the weather and make it change, it just is what it is. I make sure to have easy to cook food and that I have plenty of things to entertain myself, to try to keep my mind off of the raging storm outside.

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59 minutes ago, wheat_that_springeth_green said:

Sometimes it actually gets funny because it's just so non-stop negative that it's ridiculous.

My negative thoughts are different than yours, otherwise my experience is much the same.  I try to regain perspective, knowing I'm just one person thinking too much.  I try behavioral tricks to wish repetitive negatives away.  That's a pretty rational approach of course.  I like your icon, ha.  I've made tea out of it.

Hope you find something helpful here.

Bulgakov

 

 

Edited by Bulgakov
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7 hours ago, Bulgakov said:

My negative thoughts are different than yours, otherwise my experience is much the same.  I try to regain perspective, knowing I'm just one person thinking too much.  I try behavioral tricks to wish repetitive negatives away.  That's a pretty rational approach of course.  I like your icon, ha.  I've made tea out of it.

Hope you find something helpful here.

Bulgakov

 

 

hi Bulgakov, it's nice to meet you!

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