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Newbie having a tough time

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berrybee20
Posts: 7
Joined: Sun Dec 03, 2017 10:29 pm

Newbie having a tough time

Postby berrybee20 » Sun Dec 03, 2017 11:05 pm

Hi all. I'm new to this forum and wanted to share a bit about myself. I am a 22 year old and have been properly struggling on/off for the last year and a half or so, just after I graduated from uni. I got into a job when I left uni that I ended up hating and one day I woke up in January and was so overwhelmingly anxious I felt like I could never go back. I saw my GP and explained to her what was happening which led to me being signed off with 'stress and anxiety' for a few months. During those months my mood declined rapidly and I was feeling guilty, hopeless, anxious and sleeping for over 11 hours each day. My GP reccomended antidepressants and referring for NHS therapy. I did not want to try antidepressants, having heard bad things about them from people I know who have tried them. I also thought that they would limit my already nonexistent social life, however I did sign up for therapy. I then got some courage from somewhere and decided to leave that job and managed to find a new one. I was happy in my new job for around 2 months and then it was like something clicked and the anxious feelings started to come back. This time they were accompanied by lots of sleeping/feeling exhausted again, feelings of worthlessness, feeling emotional all the time and getting lividly angry over the littlest things, not being able to cope with day to day things like personal appearance and I am lucky if I can get myself in the shower once a week. I have also been particularly struggling in the mornings, with overwhelming feelings of not wanting to go outside, socialise with people or go to work and feeling incredibly alone. I had originally convinced myself that the anxiety and low mood I was experiencing was my first jobs fault, but when it started to come back I realised that it is actually a problem with me and not the jobs I'm working in. I also eventually managed to get an appointment for CBT through the NHS, and as I had noticed myself going back to a bad place I took it up and had 13 sessions overall. I found the first few quite hard, but once I got into it I found it useful to have someone to talk to about things each week. I managed to build trust with my therapist and I almost wish we had more sessions because I was ready to work through so much more stuff. I didn't tell my therapist because I was scared of her reaction but I've been noticing as well I've been having suicidal thoughts, particularly when I'm at my darkest places and lowest moods (which is a lot of the time in the morning). I trust myself to keep myself safe and I am sure they are just thoughts but sometimes when I'm on my own and thinking about it I can get quite caught up in it and find it quite distressing. I have managed to convince myself that I don't need to go to the GP about this because suicidal thoughts are normal and everything I've been going through is normal and not a big deal. I recently opened up to my boyfriend about the true extent of my feelings and moods and thoughts and he was really shocked and told me that it is absolutely not normal. I have convinced myself that these things are normal and that if I go to my GP about how I've gotten worse since I last saw her (which was February this year) then I'll be wasting her time. Im worried she will just tell me to take antidepressants and I'll feel unsupported and alone like I did at the beginning of the year. I don't really have many close family/ friends and none I can talk to about this, except my boyfriend, but I feel bad putting all of my problems onto him so I am coming to this forum for support. Sorry for my rant, just needed to get so much off my chest. Thank you

teamn
Posts: 297
Joined: Sun Nov 05, 2017 6:10 pm

Re: Newbie having a tough time

Postby teamn » Sun Dec 03, 2017 11:28 pm

hi,

Your not ranting at all, it was very well written and very well explained. I'm sorry that your going through such a tough time, especially over the last year. I would definitely agree with your boyfriend, you should talk to the GP, she would welcome you going back yo her, and it will help you also, that's art of looking after yourself, as I always say, just because it the mind and emotions. it doesn't mean we should care for it any less, than if a leg was in pain/broken. your right about thoughts just being thoughts, but still go to doctors as these thoughts can be helped with therapy and a different medication.

Well done on moving to new job, and having therapy too, pity you couldn't get more than 13 session, are you able to get more sessions now? I think the thing I found the best action for myself with therapy is honesty, you just have to put everything on the table about how you feel, and then you know your working through all issues and not holding anything back. I do hope you can get some more sessions, sounded like CBT was really helpful for you.

berrybee20
Posts: 7
Joined: Sun Dec 03, 2017 10:29 pm

Re: Newbie having a tough time

Postby berrybee20 » Mon Dec 04, 2017 12:25 am

Thanks for your reply, it's nice to feel listened to. I know what you mean about looking after yourself, I always find it so hard to justify feeling low or taking time off work because it isn't a physical illness. I find it really hard to recognise when I need to stop and look after myself.

Where I live you are only able to get short term therapy on the NHS, and the max number of sessions they will give you is 12/13 in one go. I waited 6 months to get the CBT sessions and was not offered any support whilst I waited to be offered sessions. Once I finished my 13 sessions they dischanrged me, and told me that there's nothing to stop me rereferring but to give the techniques I have learnt a go for 3-6 months before deciding to refer into another service, however I'm not sure I can last that long with the little support I have. My therapist often said I needed to develop relationships with people so I can talk about my feelings with other people. Easier said than done for someone with anxiety I guess. Other than referring back into the NHS services, they have said another option is to pay for private counselling/CBT although I do not really have the fund for this. They don't make it easy to get help do they!!

breatheinandout
Posts: 318
Joined: Mon Jul 17, 2017 10:03 am
Location: UK

Re: Newbie having a tough time

Postby breatheinandout » Mon Dec 04, 2017 6:15 pm

Hi berrybee, rant away, we need to get things off our chest, holding stuff in makes it worse. This forum is a great place to come and share - you are not alone.

I completely understand why you are not keen on anti-depressants, but there is no shame in taking medication. Especially if it helps you live your life and do what you want to do, while you sort though what is going on in your head. For some people it is temporary, just while you get to grips with things. I was concerned that some meds are addictive for example, but some aren't so I'd advise you to consider it - have a chat with your GP about your concerns.

You are right that there isn't enough other support out there though, it does my head in.

Sending hugs.
Why did i pick such a long username?! Do call me Biao :D

berrybee20
Posts: 7
Joined: Sun Dec 03, 2017 10:29 pm

Re: Newbie having a tough time

Postby berrybee20 » Mon Dec 04, 2017 10:26 pm

Hi breatheinandout,

I think my biggest worries about AD's are a worry that I will become numb to a lot of feelings both good and bad (I've heard this from some of my friends) and that once I start them I will never be able to feel okay without them again. The thought of starting them actually causes me a lot of anxiety. Another worry is that they will make me become more isolated socially. I am currently quite socially isolated (apart from my boyfriend) and do not have many friends, or atleast close friends I would talk to about any of my current feelings and thoughts. The odd occasions I do socialise it is centred around pubs, drinking and clubbing - probably because of my age and not long being out of uni. I'm just so worried because I've heard AD's can make you quite ill when you first start them, which could isolate my further and also you are not supposed to drink alcohol on them, and (without all my friends thinking I'm not drinking because I'm pregnant) I'm worried they will see me as boring and not want to spend time with me. CBT has taught me that this is just negative predictive thinking and the only way to prove this is to test it, but I don't know what I would do if it were true so I can't bring myself to test it. I know these are pathetic reasons and to be honest it makes me feel awful about myself that I can't let myself get help for a serious problem because I'm so concerned with what others think.

I've got an appointment tomorrow morning with my GP (if I can convince myself I'm actually ill enough to go - probably due to my therapist telling me for months everything I'm going through is normal) so will try and discuss this with her and see where I get to. She will probably say I don't want to get better, but I do, it just doesn't come easy with my anxiety, which is always worse with social scenarios. I just think I need some support, I miss having someone to talk to each week

teamn
Posts: 297
Joined: Sun Nov 05, 2017 6:10 pm

Re: Newbie having a tough time

Postby teamn » Tue Dec 05, 2017 12:34 am

hi,

I really relate to what you said about being listened to, it really helps so much so your welcome. I hope you get to the GP and that they are helpful and refer to back to therapy, I found it really useful talking to someone wach week also, my appointments have been very sporadic lately, so ive been using this forum as my crutch. I also totally agree that the support is so limited out there, is really upsetting sometimes, thank goodness for this forum.

From what you have written, it seems you understand some of your negative thinking, but I also understand that its easy to understand in theory but often can seem difficult putting it into practice, (I'm referring to you not caring about what others think, or pre-empting what they may think). Maybe when your councellor said it was normal for you to be thinking and feeling how you do, hey meant in regards to your anxiety and not that everyone thinks like that. My councellor said same things to me, when I felt abnormal and silly fr being depressed and all the feeling that go with it, she aid its normal to feel the way I feel while depressed and when I learn techniques and get healthier mentally, then these thoughts and feelings will subside.

all the best for tomorrow,

berrybee20
Posts: 7
Joined: Sun Dec 03, 2017 10:29 pm

Re: Newbie having a tough time

Postby berrybee20 » Tue Dec 05, 2017 12:18 pm

Hi all,

Teamn - thanks for trying to reassure me. During my CBT it felt like my therapist was trying to normalise my feelings and even sometimes used phrases like "even I feel like that sometimes" which I'm not sure is appropriate, but she did teach me some good tips which I am trying to use.

I went to my GP appointment and told her everything (even about thinking about hurting myself) and she told me I really need to try medication. I spoke to her about CBT and how helpful I found it and she recommended I try and use the techniques I have learnt from my sessions before referring back into therapy. I guess this is because I only finished my sessions about a month ago so need to give it some time. She was very understanding when I said I found it hard to put the techniques into practice alone because I'm so unmotivated and she said AD's might help with this and has reccomended me trying them as I was releutant when I last saw her in February this year. She's prescribed me a months worth and has told me to come back and see her in a month or before if I start to feel worse during the Christmas period. It was nice to get things off my chest but I do feel a bit palmed off in all honesty. I think I'm going to give them a go, but she mentioned they can make you feel ill at first and I've got a few Christmas commitments coming up that have been helping to motivate me to get up every day, so I'm going to wait until they have settled down first.

amaya
Posts: 731
Joined: Sun Oct 08, 2017 9:23 pm

Re: Newbie having a tough time

Postby amaya » Tue Dec 05, 2017 9:22 pm

I get really angry with the NHS for sending people on short courses of CBT instead of referring them to the community mental health team. The fact that you benefitted from the therapy, but needed longer, and have not been doing well since, is in my mind proof that you need more in depth therapy. Whether that is CBT based or something different should be decided after an assessment with the community mental health team.

It could be that you need meds, or not. I am not anti meds, there are a great tool, but not for everyone. But when therapy has been helping it does not seem right to prescribe meds for someone who doesn't want them when you could instead make a referral. If I were you I would get a second opinion and ask for a referral to a psychiatrist or psychiatrist before doing something you don't want to. And ask for more therapy.

Just my opinion. If it turns out you need meds then do take them. It is not my aim to put someone off taking meds they need. But this choice should be a partnership with you and your doctor or psychiatrist in my view, alongside therapy, not instead of.

berrybee20
Posts: 7
Joined: Sun Dec 03, 2017 10:29 pm

Re: Newbie having a tough time

Postby berrybee20 » Tue Dec 05, 2017 11:47 pm

Hi Amaya,

Yeah I agree with you about the therapy - I think I just struggle with a lot of different issues that cause me a lot of emotional distress and it helps me to be able to talk to someone in a non judgemental way about them. I don't like talking about my feelings and I find it hard to trust people, I would have liked to carry on with my therapist for a bit longer. Feel like I'm just scratching the surface with CBT tbh.

I'd like to refer back into the NHS service but I'm not sure if they will let me because I'm sure they will say I need to give it a few months before I decide it's not working. I just can't see how I can do it myself when I feel like I'm only half finished. It seems they only want to know when you are in crisis. Really frustrating. I guess this is properly quite a wide spread issue for a lot of people, with all the cuts the NHS are dealing with. It just doesn't seem fair to leave people until they are breaking point in order to take it seriously.

amaya
Posts: 731
Joined: Sun Oct 08, 2017 9:23 pm

Re: Newbie having a tough time

Postby amaya » Wed Dec 06, 2017 10:46 pm

It is also stupid, because acting preventatively is cheaper than dealing with crisis. The cuts aren't necessary and they don't even make sense.

I would ask at least. Tell them you don't want to wait until crisis point and see what is available. Tell them that you want more than just the CBT. At least ask.. if they say no you can ask why and maybe get a second opinion, and then think what to do next.


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