Struggling to keep going
Thank you so, so much for sharing your story on here. It's a really brave step to take opening yourself up like this. Just making the first step is really huge and you should be really proud. Not only will it hopefully help you get to a better place yourself, but it can really help others, who may be going through similar things.
From your post it doesn't seem like you're a bad communicator at all. You've shared your situation with openness and authenticity. Openness and authenticity is what the world desperately needs more of. You can really help others by being open and authentic in this way. I imagine most rehab services would include peer-support groups, and I suspect you would have a huge positive impact on such a group.
I attended peer-support groups for anxiety and depression for many years, and found them very helpful. It was very scary and embarassing for me at first, as I felt extremely badly about myself at the time. I think the support groups were so helpful for me because everyone attending had experienced bad anxiety or depression, and so there was this sort of intuitive understanding among the group of these issues: this meant people would very quickly understand what the current speaker meant, and could relate to it on a gut level. This created a strong sense of shared empathy that made me realise I wasn't at all alone with these issues. The groups also helped me realise that problems like anxiety, depression and addiction are shared by all kinds of people from all kinds of social groups and backgrounds, and that the super negative view of myself I had developed wasn't necessarily true. Hopefully these forums will provide something similar for you, and help you build confidence for the in-person groups you might encounter at rehab.
There are also 1 on 1 phone counselling services available from Beyond Blue (1300 22 4636), and Lifeline (13 11 14) if you have major crisis moments. If you're a guy, there's also Mensline (1300 78 99 78). I've called all these services multiple times in the past and found them helpful.
Another good first step is talking to your GP. Do you have a regular Dr. you trust to talk to about anxiety and addiction with? A GP can set up what are called "mental health care plans", which allow you to see a participating psychologist or social worker of your choice up to 20 times a year for free.
Anyway congrats again on taking the step of posting on here. It's a really gutsy thing to do and you should be proud.
First step is that you know you've got these problems you very much want to & need to do something about. Second step is reaching out for help. You've done these things, with courage & conviction. You have already shown you want to do better for yourself & your family.
I'm so glad you've also decided to post here. Although I've had my problems with social anxiety & drinking, my circumstances were not paralell to yours. I would like to welcome you, & assure you, support is here for you.
Since Yggdrasil(😺thank you) has written such a wonderful reply to you, I feel I don't have much more to add at this time. Re-read that one!
All my best,
Hi RISL ,
Well come to our forums, Im glad that you have found us.
Please don’t be embarrassed by your anxiety and depression it happens to a lot of people, your not alone.
Im sorry that you tried to cover up your problems with substance abuse, I understand that addiction is a very challenging thing to go through.
The good news is if you really want to intervene with the addiction you can.
I understand that you are going to be around people at rehab but try not to look at this in fear instead look at it as an opportunity to grow and start your recovery.
The people in your rehab will all have similar issues to you and will all be aiming for the same goal.
It can feel quite comforting being in a group for any type of therapy….. you all have one thing in common and it’s something that you can all work on for a brighter future.
Any type of recovery has its challenges but when you are confronted by these challenges do exactly that…….. challenge them because this is where growth comes from.
I understand when someone is struggling with an addiction it’s hard to find normality and to keep up with work…..
Now that you are going to receive help you will be able to sort out a daily routine for yourself…
After rehab keep up the routine and also find employment because this will give you meaning and keep you on track.
Good luck and stay positive
Hello RISL, it's cerainly possible people take to substance abuse, whether it's drugs or alcohol to try and relieve the problems we have with any depression as a coping mechanism, but it may not be suitable for our family/friends and can cause disarray amongst them, not knowing what to do.
If you tense up and shut down in awkward or social situations then people feel as though they need something that can cover their nerves in order to cope.
Going to rehab is a good idea, but once you come out, then you either shouldn't see any of your previous mates who partake in alcohol and/or drugs because they may try and convince you 'to just have one', or alternatively you need to be strong enough to say 'no' to any suggestions, otherwise you could be back to square one.
None of this is easy to do, but if you are able to, then there's the chance your family will be one, once again, and this is exactly what happened to me, although I'm divorced, I am still in contact with my ex and both my sons are very close to me.
All good mate, and you're not rambling at all! Yes, it can be very difficult talking in those group settings. The anxiety groups I attended were run so that there was absolutely no obligation or expectation for people to speak. Some people would attend for months before contributing to discussion, and this was regarded as totally valid. Often there would be half a dozen "regulars" who were comfortable speaking, so there was always discussion to be had, and new people never felt "put on the spot". The group I attended had a tea-break half way through, and after the tea-break the facilitators would check whether anyone who didn't speak in the first half wanted to contribute. This ensured that the opposite problem - a few individuals dominating the discussion - also didn't occur.
Keep on keeping on mate! 🙂