What depression felt like and how seeing a therapist/psychiatrist helped me.
You don’t actually realize that you’re depressed but everyone else around you sees it. You hide in bed and all you want to do is sleep, or that might have just been my case.
With depression, you aren’t aware. You’re numb when it comes to feeling but, how can someone feel so numb while feeling everything all at once too?
Nothing made me happy more than the immediate gratification it had given me. I ate a lot, cried a lot, and was quick to emotional outbursts. I was very irritable, and had a sense of hopelessness that was sort of similar to using an umbrella on a stormy day only to realize that the one you’re using has a bunch of holes in it. An umbrella being used with holes through the whole thing? quite useless.
My self-worth was very low. My outlook on the future was bleak. I was very isolated nonetheless. I would often shut down, and was not as open as I am today. It was very hard to approach me with anything as I would get very defensive and would assume the worst scenario. As you can tell, I was very fragile. I accepted how most people would treat me because I didn’t think that I was worthy of any different. So, when people did treat me as if I were worthy it made me suspicious. Being treated like sh*t felt more normal than being treated nicely.
I was taken to see therapists my whole life, but because I was always moving from one home to the next, I was never able to fully open up to them as I had hoped. This created problems for me in a way that made me want to bottle everything up while promising myself to never open myself up to another soul. After all, what was the point when I’d be relocated to a new practice?
When I moved in with my fairy godmother, she would bring up the fact that she had thought that I should talk to someone, and to consider antidepressent’s as well. It wasn’t until we were sitting down and hanging out when she read aloud to me the top ten signs of depression. I was able to relate to every given sign. I was scared, but accepted the fact that I indeed had a problem. For the first time, it became something that I was willing to explore for the sake of my well-being. Initially in the beginning of my journey I didn’t want anyone knowing. Now, I am more open to sharing my experiences.
What also helped me decide to see someone was that I felt like I was in a place where I felt safe enough to be myself to a certain extent. Because I felt safe emotionally, I was no longer distracted. No longer distracted by being moved, or by being abused, or by dealing with a bunch of kids living in the house. I was in a place where I was able to start making decisions for myself. I was told that being in my car accident brought me to such a low place that it made me stronger. It wasn’t really the car accident though. It was just easy for me to blame it on that, rather than coming to the realization that it was more than that.
Seeing a therapist helped in a way I never thought to be possible. I learned new coping mechanisms, and was able to let everything out that I had always held in. Unfortunately I was still in a funk. When asked to consider taking meds, I didn’t want to. I had always felt afraid of the stigma of being on prescription medication, and was afraid of being labeled as having something wrong with me.
What really helped to change my perspective though was when Fairy Godmother began to tell me her own stories about what she had gone through and how being on prescription medication doesn’t make a person any less of a human being. I didn’t feel so alone anymore. I look at her and am inspired. If she could come this far, why not me?
It’s been a little over a year since I started taking antidepressants. I wouldn’t change my decision in doing so either. I feel that it has helped me to cope in a healthier way and rather than shutting down, I look for a solution in how I can better my thought process and what not. If I can do it, why can’t you?