First time posting. Been struggling with depression
I think I'm just trying to get some thoughts out here more than anything else but I'd really appreciate any advice anyone has.
I'm a 36 year old man and have been struggling with depression anxiety since I was a teenager. I've managed to handle it with varying success over the years, but the last two years have been particularly bad. Covid certainly was a contributing factor, but it was certainly not the cause.
The last two years I have worked really hard to improve my situation. I journal, practice mindfulness, I'm on medication, have cut out almost all alcohol, I have good career prospects and have embraced a healthy diet and exercise regime which I actually enjoy. I also see a counselor but it's very difficult to get an appointment these days. My problem is with all this hard work I just seem to be spiralling further down.
I have good friends and loving parents whom I have spoken to about this, but I feel like I am alienating myself from them because I am finding it very very difficult to have fun around them and it's hard to talk about anything except how I feel because it's becoming so all consuming.
I just can't escape these feelings of depression. I really just feel like I hate myself and everyone hates me. I can function at work and people tell me Im a smart funny guy, but inside I just feel so empty, alone and sad. Ive never been in a romantic relationship because I just have no confidence in who I am and just can't believe anyone else would ever love me. It's not the root cause of my sadness but it definitely plays a part.
THese thoughts have been with me my whole life, but have gotten so much worse the last couple of years. Im really at a loss as to where I can go and what I can do. I've been with different counselors over many years and don't feel like it's helped much. I've tried all of the advice they've offered and it seems to do less.
Thanks for taking the time to read, I'm not really expecting any magic solution, I just felt like I need to reach out and at least get my thoughts together.
Thank you for being so open here. I am sorry for what you are going through. It seems like you are going through a tough time.
First of all, I just want to say that you are so strong. Especially during this difficult time. You got through it and you should be so proud of yourself.
YOu said that you have been to a few counselling sessions. Personally, I think that therapy takes time. You need to be patient because progress takes time. If it isn't working for you then maybe you need to try and work on yourself.
Try out new hobbies and experiences. Do something you would never even think to do. You only live once, so do what you can.
Please stay safe and I am here to chat if you need me.
Hello Simmo, it's a pleasure to meet you and if I can say that no matter how hard we true to keep well it doesn't necessarily happen, only because what we are trying to do, changes for each situation, and even when you feel well getting out of bed, it can alter during the day either for no reason or perhaps someone has triggered you to change.
If you're not feeling mentally well, then you expect that no one could possibly love you, that's not true, it's just that they are unsure of how to tell you or relate their affection so that you can understand that you're not alone.
When you feel depressed you tend to block anyone's advances of love because you're not sure how to cope with this and being at work we tend to hide how we feel but often just want to go the wc to finally release all this pressure.
Having different counsellors is difficult because if we feel comfortable with one therapist, then our mood is going to change and they need to respond to how you are thinking and not much may happen, except for them to listen to you and even though it may not seem productive, it actually gives them more information to understand how they can help you.
It is very difficult finding the right person, as if you feel like its not working out you have to find a new person who is often booked out for a while and then start all over again. I am currently seeing someone who is okay, and I am determined to work with them to get better, but with covid it was very difficult to maintain consistent meetings which I feel i need. Hopefully the new year will be kinder to us all!
It's good to hear from you and to read your post. You are definitely not alone in your situation and there are many of us out there would be more than happy to give you our thoughts based on our experiences also.
The one positive i see is that you say you have good friends and loving parents. I think that whilst you say you are feeling you are alienating yourself from them, they will support you regardless. Most good friends will see that you are struggling and hopefully will stand by you throughout the good times and bad. That is what friends do.
Don't give up on the relationship either. After years and years of trying (and boy did i try), i ended up giving up looking for love around 35yo and decided to live alone and do my own thing, unencumbered This was a tough decision but i was really not doing well mentally continually thinking about it. Then without thinking or looking for it, along he came. Totally unexpected.
Please look after yourself and yes, hopefully 2022 will be a kinder year to all of us.