Mental Health: Opening Up

I’ve blogged before about my depression and how I wouldn’t let it beat me. I’ve had some lovely comments from people who have read that post.

But I think it’s time I owned up.

It beat me. Well, that’s what it feels like anyway.

The past year I have been teetering on the edge of despair. Slowly being sucked in to the deep dark pit destroying everything as I go.

The past few months I have been getting worse. Feelings of nothingness, worthlessness consuming my thoughts every day. Believing the world would be a better place without me in it.

I have threatened suicide. I plan how I would do it. What would be the quickest, most effective way. I doubt I could act on it. I’m not that brave, or cowardly, whichever way you want to look at it.

Depression does that. Makes you feel like life isn’t worth it.

Then the breakdown happened.

I truly felt that no one cared about me. Why should they? I’m not a nice person. Often being a bit of a hermit or a loner. I get angry easily.

I spent days crying. Torn. I so desperately wanted to die. To end it all and put myself out of this misery and pain.

I was told to see my GP. That things had got really bad that I needed help.

I was scared.

What if they section me? What if they get Social Services involved who decide to take the kids away?

But I went. I knew I had to. That it was the right thing to do.

I was honest with my GP. She’s seen me go through so much with depression and complicated pregnancies.

I told her everything. How I wanted to die. How my life wasn’t worth living. She listened.

She told me it wasn’t my fault I was feeling this way. That the receptors in my brain aren’t doing their job properly. She explained that tablets would be needed to help.

I was a bit reluctant. I’ve been there before. I know the stigma attached to them. I didn’t want that. Then my GP said something that made sense.

She explained that if I had a thyroid problem and she prescribed tablets for that, I wouldn’t batter an eyelid. But because it’s mental health, people get scared.

It’s true, you do get scared. Scared of what people will say if they find out. People thinking you’re a ‘nut job’ on ‘happy pills’.

I guess that’s why I’m telling you this. That depression needn’t be something to be ashamed of or embarrassed about.

I am back on anti-depressants, and I’ve started going to the gym. I am slowly feeling better about myself and not having such low moods. I’ve also not considered taking my own life since I started back on them.

It’s only been a week and they take 6-8 weeks to kick in fully, but I know they’re working.

Who knows how long I need them for, and I’ll probably be on and off them for the rest of my life. But that’s ok, as long as they clear the fog and make everything better …. And life worth living again.

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13 Comments

  1. April 10, 2014 / 8:42 am

    Huge hugs x I am so so pleased that you went to your doctor. Don’t really know what to say, just couldn’t read and not comment. Here if you ever need to talk x

  2. April 10, 2014 / 10:24 am

    I am so proud of you for getting help!! A lot of us were worried for you but it’s so difficult to help or say the right thing from afar. I am in awe of you getting yourself to the gym. I love your doctors comparison to other illnesses, she is a keeper who should be giving lessons to other GPs. Hell she should be doing public talks, because she is absolutely right!

    • April 19, 2014 / 9:03 am

      Thank you Maria. I really didn’t mean to worry people – it’s hard to explain, but I guess it was just a cry for help as I don’t have family to turn to I go to what I know – social media! xxx

  3. April 10, 2014 / 1:09 pm

    I’m really glad to hear you sought help and are starting to feel better. It is never easy to deal with depression, but it is always so so important to ask for help. Anyone who would judge you for feeling this way or getting the help you need is not someone you should concern yourself with, as they wouldn’t have your best interests at heart. For what it’s worth, I’m so proud of you. And I hope you will make it through the darkness and back into the light.

    • April 19, 2014 / 9:02 am

      Thank you Katie. I hate the way depression makes me feel and you are right, those who judge me for the way I am and for needing to take medication to help me aren’t worth bothering with. x

  4. Susie Wilkinson
    April 10, 2014 / 7:50 pm

    I’m 42 and have had depression and anxiety all of my life, your feelings of despair and wanting to end it all are all too common in my life. I’m on antidepressants and anti-anxiety medication, but it still seems so hard, and I can’t find anyone who really believes me because I’m so good at putting on a front when I need to.
    Your GP sounds brilliant, I had a GP like that about 20 years ago, but unfortunately she left the practice and I’ve never found anyone who really wants to help since.
    Good Luck on your journey xx

    • April 19, 2014 / 9:00 am

      I think we are good at being able to put on a front and making everything seem like it’s ok. I know that I have done that many a times! I think having a supportive GP really helps. I am sorry that you haven’t found another who is supporting you. It’s a hard battle, and even harder when you are doing it alone xxx

  5. April 10, 2014 / 9:37 pm

    I’ll be praying for you Rachel, there is no shame in taking the pills you need to help your body work properly. Depression is an absolute bugger and with help you can kick its arse! Mich x

  6. April 20, 2014 / 11:08 am

    Hello sweetie. I also have recurring mental health issues. I’ve been on tablets and in “therapy” since my breakdown a year and a half ago. If I forget my medicine I am noticeably worse, so i know it must be doing something. I’ve not been suicidal in a while, although still cry myself to sleep at times.

    I was also worried everyone thinks i am a nut job, and I don’t have family either. What you’ve writen is very familiar to me, and I can talk whenever you need to. X

  7. Suz
    April 22, 2014 / 9:12 am

    Hi. I hope each passing day makes you feel bit better. It’s a long recovery as is most illnesses. Working in pharmacy I can vouch for the fact there are thousands of people on medication for depression, anxiety and other illnesses. Medicine is there for a reason. Used to help when the body fails. There are thousands of people on heart medication too who don’t think twice about what others think! We need, as a society to think of mental illness same ways as physical illness because it is same, brain malfunction like a heart or kidney malfunction. Hope that makes sense and I’ve not rambled on too much. Take care Suz

    • April 28, 2014 / 11:12 am

      Thank you so much for your lovely comment and I agree that we need to stop attaching stigma to mental illness. xx