Mental Illness -

Old 08-14-2014, 06:28 AM
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Thanks Bearisgray
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Old 08-14-2014, 06:51 AM
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So many sides to this coin...Manic Depression is one of the most horrible illnesses anyone can go through....the manic side is genius, pure unadulterated genius...ideas and talent flowing so strong and fast it's like heaven on earth, the high of all highs..Then it cycles and it is this emptiness not earthly problems we all face that sends someone into the depths of hell and blackness...they become addicted to drugs and alcohol trying to duplicate the highs but it doesn't work...

My dad had this form and it was scary growing up never knowing which side would be there. There is a tv series that is hard to watch but I find very compelling having dealt with this. It is "Black Box"...If you can be open and non judgmental of her you can gain valuable insight.

I too suffered from depression most of my life...until of all things a neurosurgeon did some blood tests. Don't think anyone before had ever checked the B-12 levels in my blood...Somehow my body doesn't produce the enzyme needed to convert it...I started taking the shots because that is the only way of absorbing it and I have been depression free for the last several years...sure I get, mad, sad and all the other emotions but not the dark side as it was before. Our mdr in this country is set too low for B-12...ours is 180 Japan it is 600...quite a difference. Won't work for everyone but sure worth a simple blood test to see.

My heart goes out to all those who suffer....the ones with the illnesses and the ones who love them...
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Old 08-14-2014, 06:54 AM
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"Way back when - some religions believed that mental illness was called by demons. " - wish it WAS, way back when - I just watched a documentary on the Cheshire (CT) murders - the young man who did them was brought up in a religious family and was prevented from getting treatment by mental health professionals - his family was going to "pray it away" I guess.
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Old 08-14-2014, 07:03 AM
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Where is the line between being able to "recover" (or cope?) on one's own and needing help/medication/supervision to manage to survive?

To compare mental illness (again - this is such a vague term) to diabetes -
For a while, and for some, changing diet and lifestyle can keep the disease under control. No one can see it from the outside. But help is usually easy to get and many people are willing to admit they are diabetics. For some, it's a straight line from being diagnosed to insulin dependency. Many people realize that they need the insulin to keep going and if they stop taking it, they will be in trouble. Also, there are tests to determine where one is at in keeping one's diabetes under control.

Why is there such a leap to comprehending that some forms of depression, for example, may operate a bit like diabetes? there is something operating wrong in the person's system that needs assistance to be stabilized.

"Snapping out of it" - "Get a grip on yourself" - "What do you have to be depressed about?" do not address the problem or do a thing to make it better for those that are in need of more help.

I agree that "personal life styles" can and do affect whatever other conditions we may have - which includes our physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual being.
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Old 08-14-2014, 07:53 AM
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Depression is horrible. A couple years ago, I was very depressed, and didn't know why. I have a wonderful husband, two loving adult children and a beautiful grandchild. I felt useless, had thought of suicide. I would cry at the drop of a hat. My daughter didn't want to "deal with the drama". She has since become a psychiatric nurse, and has apologized for not understanding. My depression, believe it or not, was caused by my thyroid being way out of whack. I had taken pills for years, always had my blood work done, no problems. However, when I finally decided to see my doctor last summer and actually tell him how I was feeling mentally, he ordered lab work and my TSH (thyroid stimulating hormone) was 19. Normal should be no higher than 4. We are working on getting it back within the normal range. Had lab work this morning so very anxious to see the results. It's a slow process adjusting thyroid meds, but once doc increased my thyroid med, I started feeling "normal" very soon. My heart goes out to patients and families dealing with this problem.
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Old 08-14-2014, 08:31 AM
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Originally Posted by Wanabee Quiltin View Post
I want to remind you that he was an alcoholic and drug user. Depression goes with this.

Are you saying depression comes from alcohol and drug use, or that substance abuse comes from depression?l Remember he was "clean" for almost 20 years ... and still battled depression during that time. Robin was an extremely complex character, like John Belushi, both battling their dark sides their entire lives..
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Old 08-14-2014, 08:37 AM
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My father's second oldest sister was institutionalized a couple times after she was married and had her 2 children. They put her through so many treatments; twice the one's where they jolt your body with electricity to shock it out of you. She was totally abused throughout her life. She left her husband and brought her daughter with her to live and help take care of my father's parents. She could do nothing right. She worked full time and took care of her daughter and my grandparents and my uncle and his son lived with my grandparents also. She took a lot of abuse from everyone. When my other aunts and uncles came over they were very critical about how things were. Food was not good enough, laundry wasn't done right, just she did nothing right according to everyone else. Her saving grace was her faith and her job. She was in walking distance of her job and her church was just right across thestreet fromher job. She went to church on her lunch hour to take communion during the different seasons. She was a launderer at a hospital. That was a lot of heavy work, the laundry could not touch the floors. Anyway, she did all that and came home and did the same thing all over again. I saw how hard she worked by staying over night a couple times. She turned the basement into an apartment. I told my dad and mom everything I saw and how she was treated and how my uncle and his son treated her and my cousin. After that let me tell you things changed. My father went ballistic and started telling everyone they were going to help or keep their mouths shut. We started having them spend the weekends with us and going up to the lake. She still went through Hades throughout the years. Her son thought she gave up on him. He joined the navy when he was 16 and then blamed her for everything. Her husband had so many affairs in front of her it was pathetic with the old bitty across the street. Didn't mean to ramble but she told me she was thankful for the few nights I spent because no one would listen to her but for once they listened to a 9 year old who got to spend some quality time with a special aunt. She was also a very talented needle worker, knitting, crochet, and quilting. She did everything by hand and my mother was thrilled with some of the doilies she made for my mother. She had many bouts of depression. My father talked to her priest once to try to get her some help. The priest said to get her out of the hole she was living in and she would get better. My father help my cousin with a deposit on an apartment and moved them both into it. She later ended up in a health center where she could leave overnight but had to be back the next day. When I got off work on a Saturday in the summer, I would pick her up in my Chevette then go to McD's and eat our meal during the hour long drive to the lake. She passed away a couple years after being in the center but she said she had her best years there. She had rules but was never told she wasn't good enough. She had her crafts and taught them to some of the employees. She had severe depression because of all the abuse she went through, emotional and a lot of verbal. She was a diabetic and my mother saw to it she didn't have to worry about her diet. We all went on diabetic diets when Aunt Catherine came to visit! Didn't hurt a bit. Had one aunt (her sister) that I asked my dad if she was possessed by demons. That one chased her husband down the street with a butcher knife. Now she was definitely had a problem. I just feel if you could just look at their past and see how and why they've come to the level of severe depression, I'm sure came from their child hood. Some one has said something that stuck in their psyche like just the right amount of epoxy glue that just can't come lose.
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Old 08-14-2014, 08:52 AM
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I come from a long line of manic/depressive people. Most of them until my generation were out of control alcoholics, my generation understood that there was a genetic component to the problem, and have found treatment that works. I do have one (out of the six siblings) that refuses to believe he has a problem, and the fallout in his life is quite dramatic. Mental illness can be a birth defect, or caused by trauma, or life experience. For some stupid reason, humans have decided that these kinds of problems should carry some kind of stigma. I hope it is just misunderstanding of it and not fear of the sufferers, I know that there is help available, but until the insurance community stops being able to decide what "one size fits all treatment"/ works for everyone, the problems will continue. Treating mental illness is a multi-approach science, until we stop trying to fix everyone with assembly line medicine, mental illness will continue to plague humans. I am very thankful for the doctors (plural) that have helped me out of the dark. I spent years unable to cope with the world because I was told that I was the problem, not that there might be a solution. Encouraging people to seek help, is my way of paying back the fates that led me to treatment. Life is great now, even with the occasional down day, anything is better than where I was. If you are getting help, please be patient. It took a while to find the MEDS that work for me, but I stuck with it, and now I am doing very well. I wish you all well and healthy.
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Old 08-14-2014, 09:49 AM
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I have suffered with depression all my life. Fortunately I have never been self-destructive, but undiagnosed and untreated bi-polar disease (aka manic-depressive) takes a lot of energy to live with. I was properly diagnosed 10 years ago and have been happily taking the right combination of drugs, keeping me "normal" as possible. By the way, when we were younger (30-50) my older sister's answer to my depressive episodes were "get over it. How bad can it be?". She's now 72 and I'm 68. She still thinks you can "out-think" mental illness. No wonder some of us are depressed! HA HA
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Old 08-14-2014, 10:20 AM
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NJQuilter: I think you are doing a marvelous job of being the friend she needs! Depression is like being on a tread mil you can't get get off of....[or a fast moving merry go round].no stopping place until you get help. In my deepest depression I turned to the book of Psalms in the old testament, but I also saw a dr. until hubby's insurance ran out.

Originally Posted by NJ Quilter View Post
I have a friend (really - it's a friend) who has been suffering from a very severe depression for a number of years now. I encourage her at every opportunity to seek help. The reasons for her depression are very valid but it's devastating for her nonetheless. I want to see this woman want to live a fulfilling life again. Her husband is not overly supportive of her seeking treatment. The costs involved are a very real part of his lack of support. I sometimes get so frustrated by her depression I just don't know what to do. I wish I knew better what to do to help her beyond listening and encouraging her to seek treatment.
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