When things get tough

February 7, 2012

Please don't read ahead if you feel that something in this post may trigger you, it touches upon depression/anxiety/death/mental health.

pretty collar

This is not the usual kind of post you would find on my blog but its something I would consider to be a major issue in my life right now, and I hope sharing this will help someone else get courage to speak to someone if they feel like they need a little bit of "help". Whilst i'm aware not everyone will have the same problems I do (and I know therapy isn't for everyone) - Its okay to ask for help when you feel like you need it. Whether that be in the form of a therapist or a good friend you can trust.

A few months ago I realised one day I will be dead. I know that probably sounds ridiculous to some people, but when your life has (for the most part) been unaffected by death - its quite easy to forget it happens. I started having what can only be described as panic attacks about once every two-three days when I thought about it. I could deal with it but over the past few weeks I began to feel like I had reached "boiling point" - my mind was stuck on this one horrible thought and although I desperately wanted to think of other things, it just wasn't possible. It went from thinking about it once every couple of days to thinking about it for most of the day. Its kind of silly in a way, because here I was crying about dying in the future and that meant I was missing out on right now.

After spending a large part of a Friday evening crying, I went to see an "emergency" doctor who works outside of normal hours. I have to be honest, at the time it was the last place I wanted to go - but did so because I knew my loved ones were worried. From the second I went inside until I departed, I felt like an inconvenience. I thought the doctor was joking when he asked "is this the first time you have tried to harm yourself?" - he obviously hadn't read my file because this was the opposite of what I wanted to do. He asked me a list of questions which were all of the "how to know if you're depressed" signs and symptoms I had googled earlier, it almost felt like it was a game of questions and answers. Even though my answer to all but one question was "no", I was prescribed Xanax and antidepressants before I left and told these weren't addictive. I understand he was probably worried when a 21 year old girl was sitting in his office crying like a baby - but i'm a big girl, we are both adults and he should be honest with his patients (a quick google search tells the horrors of Xanax addiction!)
When I left the doctors office, I was feeling confused and misunderstood. That night I took half of a 0.5mg Xanax and slept for 13 hours, the following day I took half of a 0.25mg Xanax at 3pm and spent most of the evening laying on my bed until I eventually fell asleep at 7pm. I was supposed to be taking the full Xanax pills twice a day along with antidepressants which list being extra tired and weight gain as the main side effects (as an already overweight girl, I don't think I should be taking pills which make people gain as much as 30lbs in 6 weeks!) Taking all of the pills would have meant I would likely want to sleep all day, every day. I did not want to waste my life in bed, nor did I want to take pills I didn't feel like I needed. I don't believe I was/am depressed, anxiety maybe, but I think the doctor diagnosed me as depressed and put me on pills because it was an easy option.

The next week I began to google counselling services and called up a local therapist who scheduled an appointment for the next morning. It was a little daunting at first, I was really afraid of going in there and being judged but I was made feel so comfortable and welcome. Although I still have a long way to go, I know I will get there and I really feel that this is what I need to get on with my life and focus on the positive things again.

I guess the main point of this post was to share "my story" which I hope will help other people. If ever you don't feel comfortable with what your doctor has prescribed/recommended, seek a second opinion. If you think you may need to speak to a therapist but are worried about the stigma attached to it and mental problems in general - don't be! Sometimes we need a little bit of help or guidance and nobody should be afraid/ashamed to seek it. I'm certainly glad I have.

xoxo


ps. Completely unrelated but I will be announcing the winners of my giveaway as soon as possible, its going to take me a while to sort through all of the entries. Thanks to everyone who entered!

136 comments:

  1. Hey,
    I'm so sorry to hear about the problems you've been having.
    I've suffered with depression for years, if you do ever want to chat or have any questions feel free to email me betty_leopard@hotmail.co.uk
    I also have a depression blog http://blackbettyleopard.blogspot.com
    Sometimes doctors do turn to medication too quickly, because they feel they need to do something. Overall, I have found therapy much more helpful and it sounds like it's a better way for you to go.
    Best Wishes
    Betty
    x

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  2. What an honest post! My boyfriend is suffering from depression and he has gone to see a therapist. I think it's great that you tell your story it's as much a part of you as your blog.

    Keep going and be strong!

    Xx

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    1. Thank you. I wasn't sure if I would share all of this, it took a lot of "thinking about" until i finally decided to do it. I feel like if my post helps even one person then its worth it! xoxo

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  3. Mental Health Services in Ireland are appalling. I really hope you feel well again soon, take good care of yourself x

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    1. This is so true! The doctor referred me for counselling through the public system (apparently mental health counselling is free for everyone here?) and told me he would mark my file as urgent...that was weeks ago and I still haven't heard from them!
      I am glad I found this place online instead!

      Another thing I forgot to mention in my post that some people may find helpful if they're reading this - Counselling can be expensive but I discovered that a lot of counselling places offer "plans" especially if you can't afford the usual fees. Some even have low cost options for people on lower pay/unemployed.

      xoxo

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  4. Mental Health Services in Ireland are appalling. I really hope you start to feel well again soon. Take good care of yourself x

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  5. Thank you for sharing. It is brave to put your story out there and I know that there will be someone who is touched and helped because of your bravery.

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  6. This was really comforting for me to read. I have very much been feeling a lot of the same things lately especially relating to death and the idea of dying. People around me say "oh everyone thinks about that kind of stuff", but I really think a lot of people don't. They mustn't or they would be as upset about it as you and me! I really admire you seeking help and pushing through despite your first encounter. I guess for me it's on my to-do list. I've sought professional help before and it hasn't been all I thought it would be. My fingers are crossed for you. I hope very much that you're able to make some headway :)

    Love your blog as always.

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    1. When I told my friends/relatives how I was feeling, I got a lot of "everyone thinks about it" or "you're too young to worry about this, just forget about it until you're older" - but I don't want to forget about it. Its something I have to learn to accept so putting it to the back of my mind like I have until now will only make it worse in the future!
      I am glad in a way, because it has changed me for the better. I think of everything differently - especially things that aren't essential to have a healthy life.
      The counselling service I go to have about 20 different therapists - my therapist was honest and told me the first day that if ever I feel like I would rather talk to someone else just to let her know and she won't be offended. I really liked that she said that! If its something that really bothers/upsets you then I would really recommend speaking to someone about it. xoxo

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  7. I had the opposite problems with my doctor in that it was very difficult to get the prescription I think I needed out of him for my quite serious anxiety. I hope this post is useful for some people to realise, as you said, that you shouldn't be ashamed of mental health problems. I really hope you feel better soon xx

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    1. I am sorry to hear you had a difficult time getting the medication you needed! Here in Ireland (in my experience with family/friends, at least) doctors give pills out like they're candy. I know someone who was put on prozac at 10 years old because they assumed he was depressed, and it was only in his late teens he got diagnosed properly - autistic.
      I can understand why some doctors would hesitate to give certain medications, but at the same time it has to be frustrating for you that you can't get it! xoxo

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  8. Thank you so much for your honesty and bravery. I know someone will be touched and helped because of you and your post.

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    1. I really hope so! Writing this post was bittersweet, I was a little afraid about putting all of my thoughts and feelings "out there", but I also knew it may help someone else...the idea of helping someone else outweighed everything else though :)

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  9. I definitely agree on getting second, and even third, opinions. It sounds like there's more going on than your apprehension toward death (which was probably the tipping point of whatever's been building up. Depression is sneaky). I have those days, though. I think we all do. Avoid murder cases/shows on TV, keep busy, and make something awesome. Keep blogging. I don't know you well at all, but I'm here for you in a fellow-blogger support system kind of way. :)

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    1. My therapist thinks theres something deeper, and there probably is! It will take a while to get to the root of everything though. Both her and the guy who screened me (he is the main therapist/founder of the service) agree that I have almost no signs of depression, and I don't think I do either, so its probably a case of built up issues & anxiety.

      I have been trying to avoid all "death" related things as much as possible but DANG, its hard! Little things creep up in my every day life that are constant reminders, eg. parking behind a van which just so happened to say "grave maintenance", today everyone on facebook mourning the loss of a local woman, etc. The good thing is that I can see these things without breaking down and crying like I was before!

      xoxo

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  10. So sorry to hear you're going through all this, but I think you've done the hardest part and now hopefully you'll start to feel a lot better!

    It was really brave to write this kind of post and share your experiences with us because there may be other people out there who feel like they have nowhere to turn and this will help them seek help.

    http://www.rafflesbizarre.blogspot.com

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    1. Thanks for your comment, I really do hope my post will help someone else xoxo

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  11. Amazing post :)
    Ive suffered with manic depression and antidepressants made me put on two stone.
    Remember your not alone :) xo

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  12. I can honestly tell you that this has happened to me before. It started with thinking "one day my dog will die" and then moved onto "one day I will die" and it's horrible to think about. It's totally normal and I'm so happy to see that you're not ashamed or scared to share what you're going through. It's natural to be upset and worried about something that we know nothing about, and can't prepare for. You're not alone, and I wish you the absolute best on your path to growing stronger!
    -Katelyn

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    1. Your description of it "something we know nothing about and can't prepare for" is so so true! One of the main things that bothers me is not knowing what happens, fear of the unknown I guess! thank you for your lovely comment. xoxo

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  13. Such a brave, admirable post. It's such a comfort to read similar experiences, sometimes. I hope you don't mind but I've sent you an email. :) xx

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    1. Thank you Jade! not at all, i'll check my email after i've finished responding to comments and reply then :) xoxo

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  14. I am really touched by your story and so proud of you that you shared it. Over the last year I experienced something weird.. I began to cry every night. Literally. There was no evening without cring in bed and the strange thing is that I never really knew why. I was happy with my boyfriend, my family and friends. So I never told anyone because I thought there is no reason for me to be sad and that other people suffer under diseases or the death of loved ones and nothing happened to me to be a reason to cry.. If I had read a text like yours it would have maybe encouraged me to talk to someone.
    Hope you feel better soon. Lilly x

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    1. Thank you for your comment Lilly. Are you feeling better now? It sounds like you are from your post, if so then I am happy for you! And if not, then it is never too late to speak to someone. thank you. xoxo

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  15. Your bravery in posting this on your blog is so amazing. I agree that talking about things can often be a help for some people, although not for everybody, but just from reading this I'm sure there are many people who with completely understand similar things you have been going through. I've never been through such a phase in my life, but I'm supporting you through all the steps in your recovery. Much love xx

    LittleGlitter.org

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    1. thank you so much Tasmin! I do understand that a lot of people don't agree with therapy, but (I think) there are just as many who do so hopefully someone will find my post a little bit helpful! When I first went to the doctor I was terrified, and even more scared when I made the first appointment for the therapist, but I am so glad I did it now. xoxo

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  16. I started to have panic attacks whenever I thought about dying last summer mainly because my grandad had died and 2 weeks later my dad was taken into hospital for pneumonia. I never told anyone about it because I thought I was being an idiot. I kept myself occupied during the day and blasted music through my earphones until I fell asleep at night just to drown my thoughts out. The panic attacks have stopped and although the thought of death creeps me out I've made my peace with it.

    I hope you get through this and you did the right thing by getting help, something I definitely admire. Xanax and anti depressants seem to have the opposite effect of what they're meant to do though. <3

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    1. Death is still kind of a taboo subject, most of us don't talk about it until it happens in our lives and I think thats why so many people feel silly for thinking of it. I am glad to hear your panic attacks have stopped! Thank you xo

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  17. This was really a really awful thing for you to have gone through, and I hope that everything gets better for you soon! xxx

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  18. I'm glad you've written a post like this! I'm 21 and been lucky enough to not have had any grandparents/close people to me die & it does worry me how I'm going to react when this does happen as I do suffer from panic attacks about the subject.

    Personally, I haven't seen anyone about it as when I do start to panic and question it I try to focus on something positive which always helps. But again when I do have to face up to it - thinking of something positive isn't going to make it go away - so I think in the future I will have the courage to go and talk to someone!

    I'm glad you are finding things easier and that you had the courage to write this post as it has made me feel a bit more secure about a touchy subject like this!!

    xoxo

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    1. I feel the same way. I haven't lost any of my relatives, my great grandma is 96 and shes still with us! Its kind of bittersweet. I am very grateful all of my loved ones are still here, but its going to be hard to deal with when I eventually lose someone.
      I tried the same as you, thinking of the positive things, but it just didn't work after a while (for me, at least). I hope things get better for you. xoxo

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  19. At first look my writing 'this is a 'refreshing' post' will sound mean, won't it? But truth be told - I know exactly how you felt/feel as I went through exactly the same cycle of just thinking to full-out panic attacks a year and a half ago and I actually only got help around this time last year.

    I know how tough it is to speak out about it - it seems scary to open up to anyone and the first place I actually went to talk about it was my private blog and only then did I gather courage to tell my parents about it.

    'Death' occupied my mind a lot of the time - mostly, I didn't fear for myself but my parents (both of them have been dealing with health issues in the last five years and because I thought they had enough to worry about, I didn't want to dump my problems on them); when one of them was late to meet me somewhere, or I couldn't reach them on the phone I dreamt up the most bizzare situations and accidents until I could do nothing but sob and gasp for air. And that was only the beginning of everything really.

    I didn't see a therapist but tried herbal remedies and those worked out fine for me. Talking does help a lot though - if you ever feel the need to talk, you know where to find open ears!

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    1. Thanks for your comment. I'm lucky that my mom is quite young but shes a heavy smoker and has been for over half of her life so that worries me. That and a mountain of other health scares over the years - every time she tells me she has a new test/scan/etc. I am preparing myself for the worst mentally.

      I haven't tried hebal remedies but if the talk therapy doesn't work out in the end it is something I will look into!

      xoxo

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  20. Honey. There is so much I want to say, but instead - I am going to keep it short.

    Feel proud of yourself. You have recognised something that has effected you and you have sought help. You're amazing and wonderful and you're in control - you just don't necessarily feel it.

    One of my best friends died when we were seventeen in a motorbike collision and for a long time, I felt like I had to do a lot of things for her... Like - say yes to experiences, try new things, attempt things that scared me, because she would never be able to. I felt I owed her part of my life because of the loss, fear even guilt that I felt about death. It took me time to realise, I just had to live a good life for me, and cherish every moment as best I could. That would (in a way) honour her - but also, be my best life choice.

    Live your moments, have fun, don't sweat the small stuff and try and smile at the bad things.

    But - if you are having trouble doing that right now - talking to people, asking for help, focusing on yourself and feeling mentally healthy is a bloody good start.

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    1. Aw thank you so much, Em.

      I am really sorry to hear about your loss but I am glad you have realised you should live your life for you. I'm sure thats what your friend would want.

      xoxo

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  21. have a hot choc! your beautiful and you need to just live your life. no one was born to live forever

    lydia xxxx
    http://lydgrmbl-howsoonisnow.blogspot.com/

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  22. You are not alone. I have this same problem--except my panic attacks are brought on by me thinking about someone I love dying, rather than myself. I would lay in bed at night and think about my mother, father, sister, husband or nieces dying and have panic attacks just thinking about it. I also have really bad panic attacks related to driving/being in a car. Xanax has helped me, but you're right, it can make you quite drowsy, and also can be addictive. I try to only take it when I have a really severe panic attack and need it to calm down. I did not want to take anti-depressants. I had been on many as a teenager/early 20's (I am 32 now) and they NEVER made me feel good. The most useful thing for me has been counseling. They can help you learn ways to deal with the thoughts you have that cause your anxiety.

    Thanks so much for your brave post, now I know I am not the only one to have these thoughts!

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    1. I also think about my loved ones too. My anxiety about me dying is mostly fear of not being able to see my loved ones. I worry about them passing too, but I feel incredibly guilty when I think about other people dying so I try not to and focus on myself instead.
      I am glad to hear Xanax works for you and that you don't need to take it all of the time. If my doctor had told me just to take it when I have a panic attack, I would understand and probably support that. But instead he wanted me taking it twice every day regardless (and 3 times if I get an attack)

      xoxo

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  23. That's great that you decided to take control and seek help! I really hope it continues to help you :)

    I went to therapy for a while last spring and I know how intimidating it is to tell people. I didn't really click with my therapist and ended up being able to make some strides on my own, so I stopped going, but I always remember that it's an option if I feel I need it.

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    1. Sorry to hear therapy didn't work out for you, I understand its not for everyone! xoxo

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  24. Hi, Dee. Let me say that I am (as ever) concerned for you and want the best for you. As boring and repetitive as this may sound, I do care about you. You are a beautiful lady with a charming personality and exceptional style. I still care and regard you kindly even if I haven't been around "Pearls, Lace, and Ruffles" lately. Just know that a guy like myself greatly appreciates, admires, and respects you. I extend you my best wishes, Dee. PLEASE take care.

    johnbmarine.blogspot.com

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  25. This is very inspiring. It is really helpful indeed to have someone to talk to about what's bothering us. Thank you for sharing your story, I find this post sincere and honest. Hope everything will turn out better for you. Good luck with everything :)

    another day to wander

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  26. I'm sorry to hear about all this, I can imagine it was horrible! The best thing for things like that is time and positive thinking, things will be better soon I promise! If you need someone to talk to I am always here! I'm sure even after posting this you feel a bit better because talking about things definitely make them easier to absorb and get to grips with. I'm absolutely terrified of death but I just make myself realise it happens to everyone and to just enjoy the moments while they are here. Hope you're feeling okay, lots of love xxxx

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  27. So sorry to hear you've been feeling so horrid and especially that, having had the courage to ask for help, the doctor was so unhelpful!!!!

    I have suffered from panic attacks on and off since I was about 15. At my lowest point I was having several a day and not really managing at all well.

    If I can help at all or just be a shoulder then please

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  28. I feel like everyone can benefit once in their life from talking to a therapist or a psychologist. It can give you a completely new perspective! It is so valuable to be able to talk to someone who is completely outside of your life, who can listen very well and give you good advice after.

    Good luck on your journey :) xxx

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    1. So true! What I like most is that my therapist is non judgemental and a complete stranger who doesn't judge me/my thoughts. Its very easy to open up to someone you don't know compared to family/friends. xo

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  29. It's great that you opened up to your readers about this. So many can relate to this and people need to realize they can get help, receive it and if it doesn't work... try something else. Therapists are one of the best listeners.

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    1. Thats exactly why I wrote this :) I want everyone to know its okay to seek help, and if the first or second method doesn't work out for you..persist and you will find a way. :) xo

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  30. Dont ever feel like you are an inconvience!!! I know it is difficult (I am currently taking antidepressants/anti anxiety pills) but it really does get better I promise!! It sounds like you are doing well and you want to succeed in getting better so well done! Xx

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    1. Thank you! I definitely want to get better, and I know I can...its just frustrating that its more of a "journey" rather than "quick fix" - i'm an impatient gal! I'm willing to work at it though xoxo

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  31. Even though I never commented on your blog before I have it on my google reader and I always read it, and I felt very identified with this post therefore I'm here replying; I always felt the same way you're feeling now, I used to feel very anxious and almost desperate when thinking about death and the thought of not existing and not thinking anymore, I would start crying anywhere and I could not stop thinking about it. In my life I have always had depression issues, I was diagnosed with social phobia at a young age and later in my life I started going to a therapist again because of obsessive thoughts I had which made me feel very bad (one of those thoughts was dead). To make a long story short, the doctor diagnosed me with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, I always thought OCD was something like washing your hands a lot or doing something a lot of times or in a repetitive way, I had no idea OCD could also be about thoughts, about having obsessive thoughts about some issue and feeling so bad about it that my life was starting to be hard to live. I started taking meds and the doctor gave me really good advice to deal with the obsessive thoughts (she told me that the thoughts are life a heavy fog that you have to just walk through and not try to avoid it, I mean, not trying to avoid the thoughts but to accept them and accept that sometimes we can think annoying or ugly thoughts, and that does not make us bad people. In the deal of death I also had to do a work that involved the death theme and I read a lot about it, even though I'm not 100% sure of what happens when you die, I feel a little bit more calm about it. I will recommend you two things, one is to look into OCD and obsessive thoughts, the other is to search for some books by Elizabeth Kubler Ross (a doctor who researched the issue of death during her work) and The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying, written by Sogyal Rinpoche, two different (but not so much really) approaches to the same issue.

    I'm sorry for the long comment and for my grammatical mistakes, I hope you can feel better soon.

    Maca.

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    1. Hey Maca, firstly - never apologize for a long comment, its so thoughtful that people go to the effort of leaving any kind of comment, especially a long one! :)

      I have wondered in the past if I have OCD, but it could just be coincidence. Mostly because I am a neat freak and get annoyed if things don't match, thats my biggest issue! I will look into those books though, thank you so much.

      xoxo

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  32. Even though I never commented on your blog before I have it on my google reader and I always read it, and I felt very identified with this post therefore I'm here replying; I always felt the same way you're feeling now, I used to feel very anxious and almost desperate when thinking about death and the thought of not existing and not thinking anymore, I would start crying anywhere and I could not stop thinking about it. In my life I have always had depression issues, I was diagnosed with social phobia at a young age and later in my life I started going to a therapist again because of obsessive thoughts I had which made me feel very bad (one of those thoughts was dead). To make a long story short, the doctor diagnosed me with Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, I always thought OCD was something like washing your hands a lot or doing something a lot of times or in a repetitive way, I had no idea OCD could also be about thoughts, about having obsessive thoughts about some issue and feeling so bad about it that my life was starting to be hard to live. I started taking meds and the doctor gave me really good advice to deal with the obsessive thoughts (she told me that the thoughts are life a heavy fog that you have to just walk through and not try to avoid it, I mean, not trying to avoid the thoughts but to accept them and accept that sometimes we can think annoying or ugly thoughts, and that does not make us bad people. In the deal of death I also had to do a work that involved the death theme and I read a lot about it, even though I'm not 100% sure of what happens when you die, I feel a little bit more calm about it. I will recommend you two things, one is to look into OCD and obsessive thoughts, the other is to search for some books by Elizabeth Kubler Ross (a doctor who researched the issue of death during her work) and The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying, written by Sogyal Rinpoche, two different (but not so much really) approaches to the same issue.

    I'm sorry for the long comment and for my grammatical mistakes, I hope you can feel better soon.

    Maca.

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  33. As someone who has been dealing with mental health issues for ten years now I really relate to this post. I'm glad you made the step and found a therapist, talking therapies are better than any pill x

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    1. Thank you and I completely agree with that last sentence! xo

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  34. Hi sweetie, such an honest and endearing blog post that I really felt I could relate to. My family have had problems with mental illness, and similar to you, although I would never have considered myself depressed (however broad the term is), whenever something 'disruptive' or worrying happens that affects me in life, I become very anxious and in the past I have suffered a few panic attacks as a result. I have the similar death worries, I have panicked about it ever since realisation first dawned when I was quite a young girl (about 12, I think). I found it impossible to control; although I'm only like it when something very bad is happening i.e. the last time was my mum's anaemia spiralling out of control, most of the time I can live a normal, happy life. It is always there and I have come to accept it, I pretty much know how to deal with it and luckily I have lots of support from my loved ones (I've never really spoken about it, but they are always there). I hope your therapy helps you, good luck with it and let us know how you are doing in future :)

    xxx

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    1. Glad to hear things are now okay for you! I will definitely post an update in the future about everything. thank you xoxo

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  35. sorry to hear that your experience with the doctor was not helpful. Sometimes it seems hit and miss as to what you will get wehn you go into a surgery but it's such a shame that they think the answer is always to give pills. I have had counselling and I can tell you it helped me so much. There were things i didn't wish to discuss with my family as I didnt want to stress/worry them but also because if i told them the things in my head they would think of me differently or always think that 'bad thing' about me. Sounds silly but it was how i felt. Good luck with everything. xXx

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    1. I completely understand. I love counselling because I don't feel restricted in what I say. Sometimes we worry about hurting the feelings of our loved ones by saying "the wrong thing" - but with a complete stranger its so easy to say everything thats on your mind! xo

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  36. You m'dear are very strong for posting this & possibly giving strength to another person in seeking help! I am a therapist (well soon, board exam first & then I'll be an occupational therapist) & there are so many cases where the outcome would be so much better had the person come in earlier to seek help with their difficulties. Mental health is my favorite part of my field & hopefully will find a job there since I love seeing people be able to get better & get back on their feet. However, I'm glad that your family seems to be a great support system for you. That is always a key contributor to getting on the right path. I hope the best for you on your road to recovery :)

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    1. Good luck getting your job when the time comes! I admire people who work in that field. Thanks for your sweet comment xoxo

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  37. Thank you for sharing such a personal story. I had a similar experience when my nan and then grandad died. I found myself spending ridiculous amounts of time thinking about death and getting really down about it. I think this was mainly my way of dealing with grief, something i had never experienced beforehand. I started talking to my mum about it and being open about my feelings and it helped so much. Wishing you all the best for the future :) xx

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    1. Thank you! It really does help to talk to other people about your feelings. The "big D" was on my mind for quite a while before I finally opened up. It felt easier to keep it to myself, i didn't want to be a burden to other people. But when I actually told other people they felt worse that I had been keeping it locked up and trying to deal with it on my own! xo

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  38. You are so brave for being so open and posting a story like this...I've had a slightly similar experience myself and now I'm thinking that I may have to actually take some action, like you did. I really hope the therapy goes well for you and you see an improvement sooner rather than later :) x

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  39. You are brave and smart. Maybe the most people will accept what the doctor said, but we all must accept that nobody knows everything, and we always have to listen for a second opinion.
    I'm glad u'r ok!

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  40. I think you are so brave to share your story with everyone...it really is so touching, and as I've had an experience somewhat similar to yours, you've kind of motivated me to take some action and actually face the problem now! I hope your therapy helps and you feel better sooner rather than later miss :) x

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    1. Aw I am so glad my post helped you! I just feel like when I have this platform and so many people stopping by my blog, I would be selfish not to share it and help others! xo

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  41. It's really nice to read a blogger writing an important and heartfelt post like this, I know your words will help others and encourage them to seek help if they're having trouble. Well done for bring brave enough to post about your experience.

    I've had an experience very similar to yours, including a prescription for a weeks worth of Xanax from an emergency doctor, and being told I'd be fine in a couple of days - or being told that God led me to a particular doctor so that I'd take the drugs he was prescribing me! I can't believe you were told that it wasn't addictive, that's such irresponsible healthcare! I'm very glad that you had the sense of mind enough to read up about it before taking it!

    It's important for you to find a good doctor that you trust, one that you can build up a relationship with, and also one who's not quick to give you a prescription when there's lots of other things you can do to help yourself. If you live in Dublin I can recommend a very good city centre doctors office where I go and find the doctors excellent.

    I also have a lot of tips on dealing with anxiety, things I've learned slowly over the years, and things I wish I'd known at the beginning of my own problems. If you'd like to get in touch you can reach me by email: hello@cityofblackbirds.com But you know I think you're pretty strong and have a good head on your shoulders, reaching out for help like that is not easy and you did a great thing for yourself. Keep being proactive and positive like that and you'll bounce back in no time.

    Wishing you the best of luck in your recovery, you're stronger than you think and you'll pull through this xx

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    1. The emergency doctor gave me 12 Xanax pills for the weekend, and I got 60 (a months supply) two days later. Its kind of worrying that I got them so easily. I've had a really tough time finding a good doctor, i've been to about 6 different ones over the last few years (not about this issue, but general sickness) and each seem more interested in getting rid of you quickly than actually sorting the problem!
      Thank you so much for leaving such a kind and caring comment. You seem like a wonderful person. I hope you are having a great day.

      xoxo

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  42. Aw, I understand how you feel. I have been on anti Depressants for a few years now (I'm 24) And if I didn't use them now I'd be a mess, I suffer from anxiety attacks less then I used to, and therapy really helped.. I'm much happier so I know you can, live for everyday and be happy, you deserve to be. :)

    http://juffielovesstyles.blogspot.com/

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    1. Thank you! I am glad to hear you are happier! :)

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  43. I love that you're so open and willing to share all of this with your readers. Sometime those bad thoughts really get to you and you just can't shake them. Its terrifying not being able to think of anything else! Stay strong, girly!

    http://ahopelessnotebook.blogspot.com/

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    1. I feel like a lot of my readers are friends, even though I don't actually know them personally! Anything personal I have posted on here has always been followed by so many nice messages! I am glad I shared this too. xoxo

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  44. I admire, am proud of and envy your strength. thank you for this post and wish you all the best in feeling and getting better! :) xxxx

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    1. Aw thank you hon. I have to be honest, if it wasn't for my loved ones giving me the little "push" to go to the doctor, I probably wouldn't have for a long time. So I hope my post will help others get that little push too! ♥

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  45. I feel like I don't have anything useful to add but I couldn't not leave a comment after reading that post. Basically I think you're a truly inspiring amazing and inspiring individual, much love <3 xoxo

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    1. Reading that made me smile so much, thank you - thank you - thank you! xoxo

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  46. Hope that you start to feel better soon :) you are so brave and honest being able to write a post like this
    Sorry to hear that you are going through this. Hope that you stay brave and strong
    x

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  47. Realizing your own mortality is hard. I think that we all kind of go through it.

    I am not one to ever take medication, but I do believe in vitamins.

    It sounds like you may need to take some B12 to boost your mood. It also helps with your metabolism and gives you energy. I love it.

    http://turquoiseandtangerine.blogspot.com/

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    1. Thank you. I am actually B12 deficient so maybe I need to take a bit extra! xoxo

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  48. I have a couple of people very close to me who have or are suffering with depression, I contemplated blogging about it recently but decided not to bother, mainly because I'm not good with words, but you have done an excellent job, your post is so touching and I'm sure it will help many people. I know how rubbish doctors can be - I went at 16 thinking I had anaemia and their solution was to put me on the pill without tests or questions, but I sincerely hope you get there in the end which ever path you choose xxx

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    1. Aw thank you so much. To be honest, it was hard for me to post this. A part of me thought it was a bad idea to let "the world" know how I was feeling, and another part was afraid I would put these thoughts into other peoples minds and I don't want to do that (hence the warning at the top!) But I realized its not something I should be ashamed of and I hope it helps others xoxo

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  49. This is such a beautiful post, so heartfelt and brave, well done! You have already made the first step to feeling better in seeking help! All the very best luck for the future xoxo

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  50. Well done on being so brave to post this love, I know how you are feeling to some extent. Luckily I've found a wonderful counsellor and would urge everyone reading to try therapy first, before medication. And only use medication if it is recommended to you by at least two doctors! Hope you're feeling better now sweetheart xxx

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    1. I completely agree! Medication should be a last resort in my opinion, it can do a lot more damage than good long term. thank you. xoxo

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  51. I can say that I know how you feel and hate the fact that doctors just want to fill your body full of drugs.
    I hope you will get better soon. just try to be positive dear xxx
    you are such a lovely person and yo deserve all the support in the world! xxx

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  52. For a long time, I thought I was the only person who felt like this. I've never sought out professional help (all though I probably should have) but at one point, I was thinking about death and dying constantly. Not in the sense that I wanted to die; in fact, it was the exact opposite. I started writing down my thoughts on why it worried me so much and occupied so many of my thoughts. I came to the realization that I truly love my life. I'm so very fortunate to have an amazing family, fiance, and friends; I don't want for anything; I have great job among other things. The thought that all of these things could be gone in a blink of an eye with death being the quickest way to change everything, was terrifying and was the source of my anxiety. Once I took control of the "why" it became easier for me to rationalize my thoughts and fears and they slowly became less and less. So, long story short, you're not alone. Good luck with everything and never feel bad for getting help! You know you better than anyone else! <3

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    1. Everything you wrote is basically me and how I feel! We share a lot of thoughts/feelings. I am glad to hear its not affecting you as much now. Thanks for commenting xoxo

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  53. Thank you for sharing this in your blog (which I love ^^).
    It`s difficult to talk about these things but I`m so proud
    you came out with this. Having dealt with depression and anxiety myself, I can totally relate. Seeking help when you feel you can`t cope on your own anymore, is the right thing to do..and finding the right kind of help that works for you. Much love and good luck dear! ^^
    MMxoxo

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  54. I know exactly what you meant when you said you have panic attacks when you think about the big D word. I am exactly the same way. No, I don't think I am clinically depressed, and no, I am not recieving counseling or taking antidepressants or anything like that. I try the holistic approach myself. When I start to panic about the eventuality that I won't be here anymore, I try to take big, deep breaths; repeat to myself: "I'm still here. I'm still here. When the time comes, I won't be dreading it, I'll be an old woman welcoming the end as a friend, not an enemy." Then I usually calm down and get on with my day. Don't get me wrong, sometimes just because I calm down doesn't mean I'm not a little sad for the rest of the day but then I try to do something that makes me happy, like have a cup of tea, or read a comic or watch a funny movie. I also take a St. John's Wort tablet or two if it's a persistent mood. (It's a natural mood-booster, with no risk of dependency or addiction). A cousin of mine did take his life, and trust me, it's not something that you want to do to yourself or your family and friends. I think in a way though, everyone goes through this at one time or another. I think it's a natural fear that we all have, because we are young and can't fathom otherwise. But have faith and keep a smile on, you're not alone. ^_^

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    1. Thank you for your comment. Part of my therapy includes CBT, which involves lots of deep breathing too. I definitely have no intentions of ending my own life - thats the opposite of what I want to do. Thank you for your kind words again. xoxo

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  55. oh i hope you feeling better now. you have a lot of blogger friends here, we're here for you *huuugggsss*

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    1. Thank you! I'm feeling a little bit better! I know its kind of a "journey" until I feel content again, but i'm willing to work hard until I reach it. xoxo

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  56. You know what?You are very very braze just like Tamsin also quoted.But for the reason being that you have been strong enough to overcome your issues and consult a doctor.Very few (rarely maybe) can do this which you are doing.And yes ofcourse, sharing your problems on a blog where anyone and everyone can read is the sign of a strong girl again.Don't worry dear you will definetly come over your troubles with ease.You have a long way to live, such petty issues are just some dark clouds which will go as the sun shines upon you. :) God bless you and hope to know the cheerful you more :D

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    1. Thank you, I mostly want to share this on my blog because I want other people to know its okay to ask for help. Sometimes people judge mental illness too harsh and unfairly. So if my post helps someone who is having panic attacks, anxiety, depression, etc. then I will be happy that I could help :)

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  57. Your post really struck a note with me. I went through the 'we're going to die' realization when I was very young, I think about 6 and I still vividly remember the terror and hopelessness. That feeling has faded now and I had gradually accepted it as a fact of life but I do think I still suffer the ramifications from that time. You are brave to have sought help and try to get yourself into a better state. All the best!

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    1. Thank you for your comment. I know quite a few people (especially in my family) who had the same thoughts I did, but it was when they were children, just like you. I remember having thoughts about it but never really thought it was "real", I guess its something a lot of us have to experience to actually realise its real. I have been so lucky to reach 21 and still have all of my family and friends. xoxo

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  58. You are so brave to post this. I've been through these feelings before and haven;t felt able to blog abou them. I admire you xx
    Ella @ Belle Vintage

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  59. Good job for sharing. Sometimes, the most useful medicine is simply stating that you have a problem, sharing with someone, getting it out in the open. I, myself, have encountered a similar situation a couple of months back. It lasted for a long time and it included daily crying and pani attacks. It turned out I had to simply change my view on life a little: stop worrying for things that didn't really need my attention and focus on what was really important for me:)

    alexandra
    shoependant.blogspot.com

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    1. glad to hear things have worked out for you! xo

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  60. Thanks everyone for all of the wonderful, kind and caring comments. I still have a couple in the middle to reply to later tonight when I get home, but I just want everyone to know that I really do appreciate them. thank you again. xoxo

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  61. Thank you very much for this post, it's hard to talk about things like that and in a way it's almost taboo in our society but I'm glad you found the courage to share this part of your life with us and I really admire you for it. I've been seeing a therapist for over a year now and it was the best decision I ever made. You're right getting help is the right thing to do and it's perfectly okay admitting that you can't do it by yourself.
    Thank you again for this post, and I hope that step by step you'll get to being the person that you want to be
    xxx
    Nina

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    1. It really is! Death is something every single person has to deal with so it makes no sense that its not really talked about, or people are called "silly" for thinking about it.
      Thanks for your comment xo

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  62. There's no shame at all in seeking help for anxiety/depression.

    I've suffered from an anxiety disorder since I was around 10 years old and went through about 5 different councilors which didn't work, hypnotherapy, medication and eventually I started Cognitive behavioural therapy which was the right one for me and my quality of life has improved drastically & I know that without that help I wouldn't be here today.
    People shouldn't just suffer! It takes so much courage to actually find help and explaining to someone what's wrong but it's worth it in the end once you jump over that initial hurdle. <3
    xxxx

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    1. My therapist is using bits of CBT with me and I really find it helpful too. Especially the techniques she gives me to use in between our sessions, when I get my panic attacks. Glad to hear you are getting help too. xo

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  63. Your my inspiration.. its people like you that keep me going in life. I love your confidence and kindness! I cant tell you how many times ive thought about ending my life. By your bravery in sharing your story, you have given me piece of mind; because i now know that depression ect./ is not only common in my life,. I dont feel weird anymore. Thank you pearls, lace & ruffels. Xoxo

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  64. Your my inspiration.. its people like you that keep me going in life. I love your confidence and kindness! I cant tell you how many times ive thought about ending my life. By your bravery in sharing your story, you have given me piece of mind; because i now know that depression ect./ is not only common in my life,. I dont feel weird anymore. Thank you pearls, lace & ruffels. Xoxo

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  65. Just over a year ago I entered myself into counselling as I felt my insecurities and pent up emotions were beginning to seriously affect my personal life, happiness and performance at uni. A two year r/ship broke down and I was on my way to getting a 2:2 and honestly I really hated myself, how I looked and everything about myself. It was the BEST thing I have done for a long, long time and I learned how to take care of myself and how to start making my own fortune in life. I am finally happier than I have been since I was a child I expect! I am sure you will only have a positive outcome from your decision, and congrats on being strong enough to ask for help :) xo tobeapoetblog.blogspot.com

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    1. So glad to hear you are happier! I think it was the best thing for me too. xo

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  66. Your very brave, telling us your experiences :)I love your blog! Have been reading it from the begining :) It's great cos I'm a fellow irish gal :) x

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    1. Aw thank you Sian. I just looked at your blog and I love it. You are stunning! xo

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  67. I think it is great that you shared this. I honestly do think this will help people going through the same, or similar things.

    http://alxmry.blogspot.com.au/

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  68. So sorry to hear about all of this. Depression is a terrible thing to go through, but it's not at all uncommon! It's good that you've spoke out about it though and consulted a doctor, as talking will definitely make you feel better! I've suffered similar problems in the past and it really is a horrible thing to deal with. My email address is ubluelights@gmail.com if you ever fancy a chat! Hope you feel more cheerful soon hun. x

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  69. Hi gorgeous, thank you for sharing this story with us. I know, panic attacks are a terrible thing. Last year I was prescribed Xanax too. I went to my GP because I felt hypoglycemic and weak after eating. She didn't do any of the tests. Instead she decided it was a mental problem and that I was afraid of food and prescribed me the pills. She failed to mention the name of those pills (and I couldn't read her handwriting) just said they would relax me a bit and that they were not addictive nor would make me sleepy. Only after buying those prescribed pills, I noticed they were Xanax. Two of my friends had been taking them and I knew they were not "safe" or "harmless". I called a friend pharmacist and the friend prohibited me from taking Xanax, saying only people who had tried everything else were prescribed Xanax (e. g. old people who don't have much to lose). Yet that evening I took a half of 0.5 mg pill. About an hour later I almost fainted and hit the glass wall of my shower. Yeah, definitely a harmless pill.
    Anyway, I think you should rather start seeing a therapist and only if that didn't help, maybe consider taking pills for your panic attacks. Good luck, I hope you'll get better :)

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    1. So sorry to hear you were also put on Xanax without being informed of how (potentially) addictive and dangerous it is. Half of the 0.5mg pill knocked me out straight away, half of the 0.25mg made me sleepy but I didn't actually sleep - just lay in my bed emotionless for a few hours then fell asleep. And to think my doctor wanted me taking the whole pills 2-3 times a day...madness!
      xoxo

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  70. My mummy is a therapist and I'm in therapy myself for various reasons but... It is so life-changing, you really have made the best decision ever. Committing yourself to therapy is all about figuring yourself out, and in your case, I hope, finding out why these thoughts of death are bothering you so much, finding out where they come from and how you can make them stop. Every feeling you have you feel for a reason and they can all be traced when you begin to learn how to know yourself.

    I am now two years into seeing my therapist and I'm getting a tattoo to mark how far I have come. It is a quote that reads 'In the depth of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer'. Often it's in the toughest times you learn the greatest things about yourself, and I'm sure you'll find your summer soon.

    I hope you feel better soon. xxxxxxxxxxx

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  71. Thank you for sharing, is nice to see something so honest on a blog. All the best x

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  72. Actually something like this happened to me too.. although not as bad.. but i still want to tell you. My aunt suddenly passed away in a car accident.. all my couins were really badly injured. I was so shocked.. and thought you know.. Life is like that. What if i die one day.. what if i die tomorrow.. i got a baby boy.. he's just 5 months old now. What will happen to him? my husband? God! I was getting depressed.. really upset.. i used to talk to my husband on skype abt it.. since he isnt near me now. But then i realised.. everyday is a new day.. and who knows when we will die? we might die now or years later.. after we have grown real old.. with a huge family around us.. with little grand kids and all that :-)

    Dont worry.. everyone goes through this.. once in a while. Hope you feel better. Love!

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  73. Oh my dear, thank you so much for sharing your story. I'm sorry that you have to experience this, and I'm even more sorry that the ER doctor was NOT helpful.

    Depression is such a deep issue, and it can be so hard to get actual help for it. I think you are so brave for sharing this, but for also being SO proactive for your own health.

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  74. Therapists, and doctors. I think there's one thing people always forget with such things: they're there to help. If you're hurting, you go to a doctors. Don't sit around thinking you'd be wasting their time. But I think with therapists it's worse because people don't want to either load their problems onto someone else, or they worry no one else will understand - that's why therapists even exist!

    Death dawned on me a few years ago. It also freaked me out at first - I've known a lot of death, I've had a lot of animals and I've lost almost all of them now - in fact my last one is already on her way out, I don't think she has more than a few days - and while I know some may not consider it the same thing, I much prefer animals to people, and I've got a big heart so it killed me each time. But the first and so far only person I've lost is my grandad to cancer last year.

    When you start thinking about death, it can be quite scary. I mean, it's inevitable that it will happen. But over time you do grow to accept it. It took me a few years. Then, oddly enough, yesterday I started thinking about my lip rings. I won't go into detail but I did start to think about it in a realistic way. It does still scare me, but it has to happen to everyone. My only worry now is that I won't have finished something. Maybe I'll be in the middle of writing a book, and it won't get finished, maybe I'll have started writing an important letter, or maybe I was planning to meet with an old friend I hadn't seen, or make amends with someone. The only thing you can really do when thinking about such things is to honestly get up and do something you've been putting off. It will make you feel better. I've been putting off writing the cover letter and synopsis for my book to send out to agencies, but when I started thinking about death the other day I just sat down and got on with it.


    And well done for writing about all this. It never hurts to express such things - what use would a blog be otherwise? It also helps other people out there who may be going through the same thing, and talking about problems is the hardest part of getting past them. So, thank you.

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  75. Thank you so much for sharing this, I went through a similar thing a month or so ago and reading about someone else going through those feelings has really helped me, thank you!

    Hope you are feeling better soon!
    xx

    www.overtherainbow-xo.blogspot.com

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