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Estrangement

Depression and Anxiety

(54 Posts)
Starblaze Tue 28-Apr-20 00:41:10

I suffered depression and anxiety my whole life. Even as a small child I remember being very conscious of saying or doing the wrong thing.

Please don't think I am throwing a pity party as I know we are all on the same boat right now, or at least different boats in the same stormy sea. Missing friends, loved ones, places and normal routines.

Its gotten to the point for me now that speaking to people from a distance just makes me miss them more.

I worked so hard after estrangement to just be able to leave the house easily. To go back into education. To put myself in vulnerable places. To get my dream job. I practically became a social butterfly. Well for me anyway. The more I achieved the less depressed I became. I even learnt to like myself a tiny bit.

Now I feel like it's worse than before. Being at home makes me depressed. Leaving the house makes me anxious.

I don't want to sound self centred here, so many people are going through this again or for the first time. I just hated who I was and I fear this back sliding.

So a question :

How is everyone coping and what are you doing or not doing that helps?

FlyingSolo Tue 28-Apr-20 01:34:00

I attend an online zoom meeting every Friday and Saturday evening but I find it makes me feel so much worse on Sunday as I am back to being completely alone again. Sometimes I am lonely but sometimes it is more than that, sometimes being so alone and not knowing for how long is frightening. I think I could do with a zoom meeting/get together that I could go to every single day even if sometimes I didn't bother going.

And please don't feel bad for feeling bad. I am starting to notice a lot of people having feelings about the situation and then feeling they are wrong for feeling that way because other people may have bigger problems. We don't tell ourselves we shouldn't be happy because other people have bigger reasons to be happy. So why tell ourselves we shouldn't feel sad or anxious or worried because other people might have bigger reasons to feel that way.

For the sake of our collective well being everyone must be allowed to say how they feel without feeling bad about it. There is no getting away from it, this is a very challenging time.

rosecarmel Tue 28-Apr-20 01:50:48

I've continued to turn to movies that I'm familiar with, I can connect with them, they don't change, therefore provide some sense of continuity and immersion-

Studio Ghibli films are ethereal and completely calming-

I've said this before but will keep repeating it hoping it helps anyone who needs to understand- Our current situation is revealing every chink in our armor, and we are seeing every weakness simultaneously, injustice, inequality, intense fear, and death which is incredibly difficult to mentally process-

When people are compassionate, return it- Sometimes it's difficult to recognize- And when they suck take appropriate measures-

Commune with nature and understand that sometimes climbing down a steep hill can be just as difficult as climbing up it-

Foot massage! Very relaxing- Candle lit shower late at night-

Healthy food, good sleep- Washing clothes by hand and hanging them outside to dry-

Music-

rosecarmel Tue 28-Apr-20 02:29:11

I just want to add the importance of noticing- You are aware of how you're feeling, when you're feeling depressed or anxious- And if you make the effort, you may notice that you're not feeling either of those things constantly-

When the phone rings, when you get a text notification, if you stub your toe, bump an elbow, become startled- When something strikes you funny and you laugh-

And please understand that the sadness and anxiety is shared-

Txquiltz Tue 28-Apr-20 02:50:41

This situation means redefining who I am, even if it is supposedly short term. Searching out a familiar activity (in my case sewing) or foraging out a new activity seems to be helpful. Thank goodness we have the internet which can open doors to so many new ideas. Sometimes those doors lead nowhere, but it is so empowering to look for another more stimulating option.

Ironflower Tue 28-Apr-20 03:56:07

It has definitely changed most people. I'm really not used to being stuck at home. Its hardest for the kids. However on a plus side we're now exercising (3km bush hike) with the kids regularly. Also its not self centered, there's always someone thats in a worse situation. We can be grateful and sad at the same time.

Restrictions are actually easing this weekend for us, we can visit family. I'm very happy for this. However now I can't just put off the talk with my parents in why we won't see them on mothers day. I think I'll send her a card, and the photos she asked for.

Missfoodlove Tue 28-Apr-20 09:15:04

I would normally be working, I have my own business but sadly I cannot work or gain any support from the government.
I have a goal each day it could be culinary, horticulture, craft etc.
Yesterday the weather was dull for the first time in weeks, I festered all day and felt low and miserable.
I am back on it today!
List of jobs and a brisk walk followed by workout at home.
I know I will feel better and sleep better tonight.

Starblaze Tue 28-Apr-20 11:01:54

FlyingSolo I would never have thought of it like that, thank you.

I'm so sorry to everyone struggling. Some really good suggestions though. I wonder if we will ever be the same after this. Mental health is so important

Smileless2012 Tue 28-Apr-20 11:30:54

What understandably affects many is not being able to see their children and GC but thankfully that's one thing that hasn't changed for us.

Our DS is in Australia so our usual contact with him using Face Time goes on as before, and as we're estranged from his brother and our only GC, we don't see them any way.

I was only thinking last night that despite the heart ache we've been through, in this current situation we are spared the difficulty of not seeing him and our GC, that we'd otherwise have been experiencing.

Starblaze Tue 28-Apr-20 11:59:23

Missing my lovely friends is the hardest for me, those are the people who know me best and I spend the most time with. Although I am talking to my dad every day, we are used to communicating online due to distance too

HolyHannah Wed 29-Apr-20 05:25:33

Starblaze -- Learning to manage my C-PTSD and all the 'goodies' that come with it has been my 2nd biggest challenge and 'it', the C-PTSD sometimes/often 'wins'. The good news is, the worst symptoms, the D&A are mostly gone and the milder stuff is so easy to recognize when I'm doing 'it' that I know to take a step back and how to ask for help/support...

And by "take a step back" I mean the moment I feel negative emotions trumping positive (dysfunctional thinkers always fall back to negative emotions like anger) I ask myself a series of questions internally. "What am I really upset about? Is this about the laundry or something deeper? What are my choices of possible reactions? Which reaction will offer the best long term outcome?" and there are a few more...

For Me, my D&A went down greatly when I was finally diagnosed with C-PTSD because all of a sudden I could understand that I was having rapid and dysfunctional thoughts but I couldn't understand the why because I was always condescendingly told, "There's nothing 'wrong' with you." Too bad Ma didn't say that with a positive tone...

Because that is part of the root of C-PTSD from childhood abuse that does lead to the depression and anxiety (D&A)... On one hand there's the admission that there is nothing 'wrong' with Me and then flipping to and acting like everything was somehow My fault. A child has no means to cope with polar opposite/dysfunctional views when coming from the 'adults' that are supposed to love and protect them.

P.S. The hardest/#1 thing for Me to learn to accept were the lies I had told myself like, "Of course my 'mom' loves Me because she says she does. She treats my Golden and I 'the same' because she says so. I am a 'bad child' for even thinking 'mom' might be lying even when I can observe her saying one thing and doing the opposite."

HolyHannah Wed 29-Apr-20 05:33:53

Starblaze -- I totally relate to "Missing my lovely friends is the hardest for me, those are the people who know me best and I spend the most time with."

While I am extremely blessed in my current situation, even with all that is going on, there are people I am definitely missing in new and different ways.

Starblaze Wed 29-Apr-20 16:19:16

Thank you Holyhannah I needed to go to the pet shop today to try and get some things to tempt my rabbit. Which is essential or it wouldn't be open but I nearly had a panic attack leaving and this is something I haven't dealt with for a long time.

I managed to slow myself down and rationalise myself through it.

I'm also thinking about what you said about what you said about misplacing feelings. I'm getting annoyed at things/people who normally wouldn't bother me. So they can all get lost too and I'm off for a bubble bath and getting the self cre I obviously need right now. I've got a bath bomb ive been saving for a special occasion smile

Starblaze Wed 29-Apr-20 16:20:31

Oh and Flyingsolo that amazing advice you gave me is being passed on to friends and they have loved and appreciated it too!

ladymuck Wed 29-Apr-20 16:27:11

I suffer with agoraphobia and normally only go out when I have no choice. I've been unable to get a supermarket delivery and am being forced to get my groceries from the small local shops. I can just about manage that, even though they don't sell everything I need.
One of the things I'm planning to do is go into the local shopping precinct while the shops are closed, and there are few people about. I've lived here for several years but have never ventured in there because there are always crowds of people about.
I'm keeping myself occupied with crossstitch and reading the complete Shannara saga right from the beginning.

HolyHannah Wed 29-Apr-20 17:19:07

ladymuck -- I too have dealt with agoraphobia and most people just don't understand. Stay strong.

Have fun with your Terry Brooks. I enjoyed those books immensely.

BucGirl1987 Wed 29-Apr-20 17:50:44

SmileLESS you always tell your personal story when making a comment? Why do you do this? You say you are over the estrangement yet you tell the story over & over & over...that in and of itself kinda shows you are dwelling on the past. I dunno just an observation from a rando internet stranger.

Lucca Wed 29-Apr-20 17:55:07

I only cope by taking it day by day and I absolutely avoid any talk of how long it will be before we are through it. I don’t watch the news either. I try to think of small pleasures eg a bowl of cashews with my glass of wine, my daily walk.

Starblaze Thu 30-Apr-20 12:10:28

I've slowed down a little, I'm not setting myself ridiculous amounts of daily goals and spending more time relaxing which is helping

Smileless2012 Thu 30-Apr-20 12:37:10

Because my personal story shows that I am over it a much as anyone can be BucGirl.

The best thing anyone can do is look at the positives in their lives, see when it happens that a negative can lead to a positive you'd never have imagined.

There a a lot of GP's understandably becoming increasingly upset and frustrated because they can't have physical contact with their GC. Because we don't and never had a relationship with our GC, we've been spared that upset and frustration.

Recognising how far you've come is far from dwelling on the past, it's showing how you've not allowed your past to dictate your future.

Smileless2012 Thu 30-Apr-20 12:39:19

PS just wondering as a "random internet stranger" and a poster I don't ever recall see here on GN before, how you 'know' I tell my story "over & over & over"confused.

Starblaze Thu 30-Apr-20 12:39:35

You don't have to justify yourself to anyone Smileless

Starblaze Thu 30-Apr-20 12:41:16

I feel as though I might have an advantage over many in this time as I have beaten these feelings before.

So many will be suffering this for the first time during lockdown. Especially our age group who have never had to live under this level of fear before.

Harris27 Thu 30-Apr-20 12:43:41

I know how you feel starblaze and can remonstrate with all you have written. Every day I struggle with some form of anxiety with no one knowing how hard it is. But this situation has made me a lot worse emotionally and financially. I keep telling myself this time will pass but it seems to have gone on a long time. Music knitting reading and my garden is helping and praying one day this will all be over.

Starblaze Thu 30-Apr-20 12:48:03

Harris27 don't be afraid to talk about it. Is there anyone you can open up to? We are also here for each other