Normal demands on a depressed person

On the wake of a couple of women I admire owing up to suffering depression for years, I have to more fully acknowledged my struggle with the illness.  Here is an article that involves both those people.

I have, for years, been telling a number of folks that I am clinically depressed. But never, not even for one minute, it occurred to me that I had a disability, and that life hit me differently than it did other folks. I always said it, but more as an excuse than anything else, “Everyone is different. It bothers me, even if it doesn’t bother you.” Or, “The problem is that you guys can’t see my wheelchair.”

I knew it. I knew it at a gut level. I said it. But It didn’t stop me from feeling guilty. I thought I should perform like others did. With my education and experience, I should have a great job. I should earn lots of money. I should be happy. I should enjoy life. I should. I should.

If somebody would’ve told me that in my vulnerable state it was “normal” that small issues would bother me hugely, and that stuff that others don’t sweat I would blow out of proportion, at least I would’ve given myself a break. But no. I kept pushing myself. I kept thinking that I needed to get over my pitiful sorrows and be normal.  Not only did small stuff bothered me and hurt me deeply. I felt guilty for being bothered. The chains were thick and heavy. No wonder I never wanted to get out of bed in the morning.

Sadly enough, It has been my life partner who has pushed me harder, in his quest to help me. It has taken him years to come to understand the dept of my sorrows, though he is getting there. I’m not even sure the psychologist I’ve been seeing for a long time actually grasps the depth of my despair. And these are two very nice people. They’re not nasty or anything. They just don’t live inside me, and if I don’t tell them, how are they to know?  I have to speak up. I have to own up my suffering.

I truly don’t know where to go from here, other than giving myself a huge pat on the back for making it this far in one piece.

I need to find a way to come out of denial but, at the same time, keep up the battle to feel better. Maybe the goal should be to feel better and not perform better, and let the performance be the result. Maybe I’ve had it wrong all these years. I have been trying to perform so I can be happy. Maybe I need to be happy so I can perform.  But it is an egg-chicken conundrum. Because feeling like a failure, how can I achieve happiness?  By telling myself that it is alright to be a failure?  That people who fail aren’t bad or lazy, just different?

Yes, it sounds bad and it is bad. But for some reason I refuse to take medication.  I think I will gain weight, lose my sexual drive, and become dependent.  And that would just make me feel worse.

Anyway, that’s what the battle looks like today. Thank you for reading!

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4 thoughts on “Normal demands on a depressed person

  1. Thanks so much for sharing this, Lorena. You really describe the sort of disconnection of depression really well. That blanket of grey Marino was talking about.

    I can relate. I have been so depressed over the last year that I have come to understand suicidal ideation really means. And yet for me it hasn’t so much been a deathwish as it’s been, if anything, a lifewish. It is a desire to be free of feeling so bad that you didn’t think it was possible to feel that bad.

    I love what you say – “I have been trying to perform so I can be happy. Maybe I need to be happy so I can perform.” I think this is true but I think when you are feeling depressed so often these sorts of thoughts end up looping round and round in your head until they end up making completely no sense and it’s easier to go back to bed.

    I am really glad you are not taking medication because I think that stuff is more harm than good. I hate it when people give me unasked-for advice but I am going to be a hypocrite to say this: if you’ve never tried SAMe, please give it a go. You might need to start off slow. It may make you feel nauseous for a few weeks, the way it did me. But that stuff is gold. It’s also priced a little like gold as well – not cheap. But it’s worth every cent. Aside from the supplements i need to take for my pyroluria, this is the number one thing on the list for me. I will sell something to get the money to buy more 🙂

    Some people find that after a few months using SAMe they respond well to its much cheaper precursor, l-methionine, which you can buy in capsule form online.

    Sorry to sound all preachy but I just simply can’t go away from this post without recommending it. It makes all the difference in the world to me – literally a difference between feeling suicidal, to enjoying and seeing the beauty in life. Awesomeness.

  2. Thank you for coming. Unsolicited advice? I don’t like it, but when I need some I ask for it. And I did ask for help on this post, didn’t I? I think your subcoscious picked up on that 🙂

    The last few days I’ve been looking for herbal remedies for depression, so thank you so much for the suggestion. I will look into that.

  3. Hi there. It’s Zoe. Like Sue I’m going to mention that altogether I tried 5 anti-depressants. The thing I noticed is that I did feel better emotionally but the side-effects were not worth the trouble.

    I eventually tried St. John’s Wort and it works for me. I tried coming off of it this spring and I weaned carefully. But the depression raged in again. The SJW seems like a buffer that calms the depression down a bit. I get mine from my naturopathic doctor and probably would be too afraid to get it at a health store myself not trusting it’s purity etc.? This is why I don’t want to give advice usually because I’m afraid something I suggest might cause harm. 😦

    Anyway, my 0.2 cents Canadian.

    I found you via a link on another blog to your former blog and followed this link from there. That’s how I came to find you tonight. I remember when you started this blog.

    Are you doing any better now?

    • I don’t think my comment sounds right at the start. Started with a thought and wandered off. Big time head cold so I’m not so sharp. Just meant that like Sue I wanted to suggest another remedy that has worked for me. I’ve never tried SAMe but it has been suggested from time to time with me and might be an alternative for me if we decide to take a rest from the SJW.

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