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Old 08-05-2014, 06:27 AM
 
38 posts, read 41,982 times
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I used to do things just because I could. Now not so much. I realized that no one was/is there to help me. I need to work on protecting myself because others will try to tear you down more than anything
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Old 08-14-2014, 11:32 PM
 
Location: Cushing OK
14,545 posts, read 18,213,296 times
Reputation: 16829
With Robin Williams sucide and all the talking about depression and what it really is, I've spent a lot of time remembering and thinking. I got really glum, remembering almost in 360 those moments when decisions were made (good ones) when it seemed there wasn't ever going to have anything get better. But it got me thinking. Most of the time I don't feel that much. Feeling can be dangerous. Feeling can open doors which you don't want to have to see again. Those moments never leave, just wait. When feeling gets inside, you have to remember.

I realize that not feeling is often a defense I carry like a shield *while* looking ahead and forward since I want to let go and some of it that's all you can do, but you don't know if you really can.
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Old 08-19-2014, 10:28 PM
 
1 posts, read 2,336 times
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Yes to me this has happend i feel no emotions none at all not happiness , fear , love , compassion or any of them not even when im alone its like they were just erased eversince this weird scar was on my arm it looks like the symbol of thanatos
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Old 08-20-2014, 07:35 AM
 
Location: Oklahoma City area
41 posts, read 67,476 times
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I like this thread. What's funny is I'm questioning the exact same thing in my life right now. I have depression and have been on anti-depressants for the last 5-6 years. Because of that I get the common side effect of emotional blunting. Yes on the surface everything is great and I don't react to anything stressful, but at the same time it's very suffocating. I am now slowly going off of my medication, and I can't even explain the difference. Before I never get excited or overly happy about anything, now I am starting to feel that. I know I will feel the negative emotions too, but now I have coping mechanisms set in place that I have been working on all this time.
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Old 08-20-2014, 08:08 AM
 
Location: Floyd Co, VA
3,468 posts, read 5,366,229 times
Reputation: 7427
I wonder if any research is being done on the long term effects of anti-depressant usage. I was one of the earliest users of Prozac and have taken it as well as several others for most of the past 25 years. I am glad not to experience those overwhelming bouts of being in the depths of depression and despair, barely able to function and in tears far too often but I hate the fact that there are times when I should be feeling terrible at some loss and I just can't even cry.

I think it makes others perceive me as cold hearted and not caring but that is not the case, I just don't "feel" deep sorrow on an emotional basis, I only know "intellectually" that the event is sad and that I should be feeling more.

My last experience of that sort of depth was when I lost my heart dog extraordinaire 8 years ago. Since then I have had to bid farewell to many senior dogs that I'd adopted and had with me for a few months or a few years, as well as a couple of dogs that had been with me for their whole lives but I just do not cry at all when it is time to let them go.
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Old 08-20-2014, 10:59 AM
 
Location: Oklahoma City area
41 posts, read 67,476 times
Reputation: 41
Zugor - I know exactly what you mean!!! While it's great that we don't get overly stressed, angry or sad about anything it comes with a double edged sword. I also don't get happy or excited about anything either. Like I took my daughter to Disneyworld a couple of weeks ago for her first time, and I was down the middle. Before the depression and medication, I would have been over the moon happy! And like you said I don't react to certain situations with the emotion that should be shown and people tend to get irritated by it. That's why I am going off of the medication to see if I can handle the depression without the use of meds, and hopefully get some of these emotions back.
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Old 08-20-2014, 11:39 AM
 
Location: Floyd Co, VA
3,468 posts, read 5,366,229 times
Reputation: 7427
Quote:
Originally Posted by mcavoyfan View Post
That's why I am going off of the medication to see if I can handle the depression without the use of meds, and hopefully get some of these emotions back.
I hope that you can get some of that back when you go off the meds. I did just that a few years ago. My life had changed for the better - retired from a job I'd come to hate, have a good pension, moved to a new state, got involved in the world of dog rescue and loved it and so I decided to give it a try without meds.

I did fine for several years, did not wind up in any deep depression but the ability to experience that wider range of emotions did not come back. After a few years the depression did begin to slowly creep back and so I decided to go back on meds since I did not want to wait and risk things getting really bad.
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Old 08-22-2014, 10:31 PM
 
Location: Cushing OK
14,545 posts, read 18,213,296 times
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Part of sadness or depression is not chemical, but issues. Issues rarely get addressed, since therapists cost too much and pills are cheaper. I had this large black space I didn't want to deal with and the pills made it cease to exist. That wasn't why I backed off the meds, as I was having physical problems from them, but the 'flatness' was very troublesome. The time when all the bad memories got let out wasn't fun, but I leaned to take it in small doses and even if its crying since you feel heartbroken, its feeling. I can say that as much as I can, I've let it go. But it doesn't ambush my life anymore.

I know its easier to give out pills and another appointment in three months, but I don't know that its really truely treating the patient if the issues inside get left out in the cold. That is failing the patient.

I made peace with my myself with meds dropping to less and less and would never go back to meds again. I'm certain if at the time the issues were addressed, instead of wiped off the map by meds, I would have not needed nearly so much and would have handled life much better. Making pills the therapy is only half the job.
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Old 08-25-2014, 11:02 AM
 
9,237 posts, read 19,613,078 times
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I think there is this big myth out there that if someone wants help with depression or anxiety that the person will just be offered meds and no therapy. I don't know where there people are going, but maybe they're going to the wrong place, or they are just perpetuating a myth that doesn't exist.

Yes, if you try going to a psychiatrist, you are likely to get a prescription for meds and referral elsewhere for therapy. That's what psychiatrists today do. But that means the person tried to get treatment in a "backward" way.

You should first go to a therapist (MA or doctoral level, preferably licensed) to be assessed. You'll most likely get therapy, and possibly, if meds might be indicated, a referral to a psychiatrist. Meds are supposed to supplement therapy, not replace it.

Unless you're fabulously wealthy and paying out of pocket, it's usually best to start off with an outpatient center/clinic where there are lots of therapists, plus doctors. These places are NOT just for people on Medicaid. We take lots of private insurance plans, plus most of us have sliding-scale fee schedules for people with income but no insurance.

While a private practice therapist with a lovely private office might sound more appealing on the surface, there are actually lots of positives to going to an outpatient clinic:
  • Multiple therapists available, with different backgrounds and specialties.
  • Therapists are supervised, and care is monitored for quality as well as compliance with applicable law.
  • Therapists are usually required to attend weekly or bi-weekly supervision sessions or clinical team meetings, where they get clinical input and oversight for their cases.
  • The clinics are regularly inspected, reviewed, and credentialed by licensing authorities, payers, and accreditation authorities.
  • Like I mentioned above, the sliding fee schedules.
  • You can make, change, or cancel appointments with a receptionist who is always there, even when your therapist isn't working.
  • There will be some formal complaint & grievance process in case you are unsatisfied with your services.
  • If your insurance is being billed, there are usually billing professionals there, who have supervisors they are accountable to. So it's not just the therapist trying to figure out billing.
  • There might be Master's level and Doctoral level interns providing therapy, but these people are closely supervised by experienced clinicians who ensure that services are being provided appropriately. Getting a "student" is not a bad thing.
  • They are much more likely to get you into therapy and not push you prematurely to a doctor for meds. This is because our waiting lists for psychiatric evals with the doctor tend to be long, but we can get people into straight therapy much faster.
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Old 08-25-2014, 01:51 PM
 
Location: Cushing OK
14,545 posts, read 18,213,296 times
Reputation: 16829
Quote:
Originally Posted by TracySam View Post
I think there is this big myth out there that if someone wants help with depression or anxiety that the person will just be offered meds and no therapy. I don't know where there people are going, but maybe they're going to the wrong place, or they are just perpetuating a myth that doesn't exist.

Yes, if you try going to a psychiatrist, you are likely to get a prescription for meds and referral elsewhere for therapy. That's what psychiatrists today do. But that means the person tried to get treatment in a "backward" way.

You should first go to a therapist (MA or doctoral level, preferably licensed) to be assessed. You'll most likely get therapy, and possibly, if meds might be indicated, a referral to a psychiatrist. Meds are supposed to supplement therapy, not replace it.

Unless you're fabulously wealthy and paying out of pocket, it's usually best to start off with an outpatient center/clinic where there are lots of therapists, plus doctors. These places are NOT just for people on Medicaid. We take lots of private insurance plans, plus most of us have sliding-scale fee schedules for people with income but no insurance.

While a private practice therapist with a lovely private office might sound more appealing on the surface, there are actually lots of positives to going to an outpatient clinic:
  • Multiple therapists available, with different backgrounds and specialties.
  • Therapists are supervised, and care is monitored for quality as well as compliance with applicable law.
  • Therapists are usually required to attend weekly or bi-weekly supervision sessions or clinical team meetings, where they get clinical input and oversight for their cases.
  • The clinics are regularly inspected, reviewed, and credentialed by licensing authorities, payers, and accreditation authorities.
  • Like I mentioned above, the sliding fee schedules.
  • You can make, change, or cancel appointments with a receptionist who is always there, even when your therapist isn't working.
  • There will be some formal complaint & grievance process in case you are unsatisfied with your services.
  • If your insurance is being billed, there are usually billing professionals there, who have supervisors they are accountable to. So it's not just the therapist trying to figure out billing.
  • There might be Master's level and Doctoral level interns providing therapy, but these people are closely supervised by experienced clinicians who ensure that services are being provided appropriately. Getting a "student" is not a bad thing.
  • They are much more likely to get you into therapy and not push you prematurely to a doctor for meds. This is because our waiting lists for psychiatric evals with the doctor tend to be long, but we can get people into straight therapy much faster.
This is all good and well if you have insureance covering private treatment. Many, I'd say most who are in need do not. This leaves the county, if your income is low enough. If it isn't you have to try sliding scale until you can't afford the cost.

Los Angeles after one is 'stable' give you meds for six months. Good luck getting in to see someone in less time unless your sucidal and then they say go to the ER. Also good luck if you are having problem with the meds your taking and need to get them revised/changed. I'm told this is typical of large cities. Meds keep people dosed so they might be better. It's cheaper than doing the right thing.

Riverside/san Bernadino is larger than some states. It has ONE main clinic for all within a two hour travel limit and one small one for the desert area. When I was with them they had psychologists there briefly but they quit and moved onto better paying jobs. I was on the waiting list but never made it. Most of the time you could see if you could find someone on a sliding scale, but that is about fourty dollars a session, and if you go with the county you don't have that fourty dollars. There is a law that meds require a doctor's visit every month, but they make an appointment and then cancel it and move it up to the next one. And then again. I spent about fifteen minutes with a doctor each of the four times a year I actually saw someone. And yes, I had problems with stress, with medication making real medical concerns notably worse, with sleeping maybe four to six hours every day and a half and commonly being up 30 plus hours before I could sleep. Solution, ambien which didn't help.

Once I HAD to see someone and ended up sitting there for nearly six hours in the waiting room to just get five minutes and a few samples to try. And it was my medical doctor who discovered liver damage and said I shouldn't be taking the meds they were giving me. I started extremely slowly taking myself off them and finally after a year were not taking any. The last doctor I saw before I moved notiiced that I hadn't had a blood test and said I should.

It's not the doctors, its the system.

I found the help for free I needed with the DBSA (Depressive and Bipolar Support Association) which while not 'offiicial' medical was always there for you. The other help I found was moving and stopping the drugs, and with a clear mind dealing with the issues nobody ever wanted to get to.

The outline of resources in the origional post is true, IF you are lucky. But its not there for the great majority and if you get stuck with sliding scale face that moment when you can't afford it or the meds or some other part. If we really cared about 'mental health' outer than subsidizing pharma we'd look at the patients need over the insurence or bank account they have.
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