looking for help with these specific aspects of depression

Smalls

Registrant
thx for ur time. fairly new here and hvnt interacted much yet but wanting to make it a habit. struggling heavily for a while now with some things that i experience related to depression and don't know if it's the same for others or not. there are several specifics but the big ones for me are 1) losing the need/want for things close to me such as hobbies, interests, but also feelings for people close to me. i just cant seem to hang on to anything anymore; 2) huge swings in the type of person i am. i can b totally into life for a period of weeks/months, only to b at rock bottom for the same stretches, with no drive to do much other than sleep and eat, and barely sleep at that; 3) I CANT SLEEP!!!! It's getting really difficult recently to hide it from my family and need to change the tide soon. when i'm doing well it seems like everyone around me is happy, but when i'm down it seems like i bring everyone else down, although my wife says its not nearly as bad as i think its. it feels like shit. but i guess i'm holding it together for now. hoping like hell this resonates with someone so we can talk thru it.

how tha FU** do u get by without antidepressants, anxiety meds, weed, alcohol or all the above?? i'm not currently on AD meds and hvnt been for many years, i've been sober for 6 weeks, (on and off for the last 18 months with the goal of quitting), and, recently found that weed does do a very good job of helping with my symptoms, but the age old stigma keeps me from using it medically during daytime hours. obviously holding me back from some much needed daytime relief. the swings are getting fairly unnerving and there's got to b a better way

Some background on me: 52. married for 28 years with 2 daughters 7 and 17(managed to not mess that part up somehow lol). currently unemployed after a layoff in '19 but slowly growing a small business. diagnosed w/depression about 12 years ago, stemming from childhood sexual abuse from older teenage males. (i hvnt gotten up the courage to tell my story here yet) if you're familiar w/the terms "fog" or "downswing", whatever the fu** it was, i woke up from one in Feb this year. no idea exactly when it started, but it felt like i had missed out on the last 15 years or so. i was functioning, apparently, but its really hard to describe. auto-pilot i guess. anyway, i got to spend 3 months this year out of the fog with a ton of clarity and energy that i hadnt felt in as long as i can remember. YEARS. it was 3 months of utopia as far as i'm concerned. but now that i've experienced coming all the way up and really living life for a while, and then all the way back down again, i'm concerned. its really messed up getting ur hands on what life shld b like only to hv depression yank it away from u and hang it out of ur reach. its really messed up. antidepressants/anxiety meds mostly left me numb so i managed over the years with diet and exercise. unfortunately arthritis has progressed to the point (temporarily i'm hoping) where i can't exercise, and missing out on family stuff. my depression-control-mechanisms are getting pretty thin.

other than that i'm right as rain. :)

hoping to get more involved here and help others, while hoping to find help. maybe finding something related to my condition that i'm always gonna need help with will keep me attached to something. :) here's to hoping
 
First off, I don't do it without anti-depressants. I hesitated taking them because I thought it made me weak. I talked to my pastor because I know that he takes them. He said they are like "sanctification in a pill". Now that I have been on them for 6 months I will never go off. I feel like myself again.

Congrats on being sober for 6 weeks. My understanding is that alcohol actually impairs quality sleep. So perhaps that is one piece to sleeping better.

I am sorry to hear about the layoff but glad that your business is growing.
 

Smalls

Registrant
hey B thx again for ur feedback. alcohol is the only thing that's ever truly knocked me out cold, but the longterm effects just aren't worth it to me, and it's hell on depression and diet, not to mention hangovers and headaches. i'm not sleeping as much as when i drank, but i feel better over all and finding some decent ways to at least slow my mind down at night and eventually get a few hours.

really great to hear that anti-depressants r helping u. that's encouraging. i hvn't given up on them completely, but my early experiences weren't great. talking to my doc tomorrow about what's new and effective. For years i was able to manage with diet and exercise but my arthritis has been flaring up more the last cpl years and exercise has been non-existent the last 4 months. it wld help to get back on the row machine or cycle. hopefully back there by the end or the year.

thx again.
 

Me&Me

Registrant
I'm not a Dr an you should check with yours, however I use Mirtazapine, it's an antiDepressant, it is unusual that it works in different ways depending on dose and when its taken. Taken in low dose in the evening it works like a sleeper, taken in the day works like a normal antiDepresant can be used in conjunction with other antiDepressants too. Having said that I exercise like fuck as well. Weed seems to keep me awake rather than making me sleep.
 

Smalls

Registrant
Thx Me!! really appreciate that. exercise has always been by saving grace, but RA caught up this year when tried testing my limits, and was shut down for May and June until i cld get back into the doc for help. i went from 6000 steps a day and/or rowing and biking, and household projects, but i went down to the low hundred steps for much of the summer while my fam was home, and it kicked my ass mentally. weed kept me clear and somewhat still positive that i cld keep this journey moving forward, but it has been the hardest stretch i've had to deal with in a while. i had to reach out for help. i do hv some strains that slow my mind and help me sleep, but many of them set my mind on fire lol. i like that mental clarity and energy in small stretches, but it hasn't solved everything, but i'm realistic that "we" don't get to solve all of this baggage, but relief and help is nice. :)

anti-depressants hvnt been successful for me, but i stopped trying after 2-3 different brands. they always eventually settled me into a numb state. i prefer the swings over numb, at least when i swing up i get to see what life can b and that it's still there for me in small stretches. :) I was able to find a cancellation and get in to my doc last week. she gave me Trazidone for sleep/anxiety, and mobic for my arthritis. mobic is slowly showing me some progress, Trazidone however was a nightmare and set me back about 4 days, and did not make me sleepy. i called the nxt day after i started Trazidone, after the fog lifted and i cld breathe thru my nose again, and she's like, ok lets cut it back to half a pill and give it about 10 days or so. LMAO. FUCK THAT!!! i mean WTH?? i already hv daily allergy issues, i don't more severe allergy issues and still no sleep. i don't need ANYTHING that's even going to remotely mess with my allergies. but just the little bit of progress with my RA that mobic is giving me is having good effects on my mental state, so that's positive.

i'm calling back Monday to let her know that i can't continue the Trazidone and see what she suggests. i don't mind "habit-forming" sleep meds, because i'm only looking for help a cpl nights a week, and rarely need back to back nights, so i'm not worried about forming dependence on them. i like my late nights and that's when i'm most productive, and will eventually wear myself out enuf on those long days/nights to get a few hours sleep in, but a cpl nights a week i need a really good rest, otherwise my mind just is a mess.
 
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