!! Depression !!

For those of you who are just beginning this wonderful process, here we can narrow down the symptoms and ask questions like "am I starting perimenopause?"

Re: !! Depression !!

Postby gorgeousfluffpot » Sat Apr 19, 2008 10:53 am

Dee, thanks for your encouraging reply. Yes, shall certainly have a look at this. You raise a good point - that all we feel is concerned with the ego. That's got me thinking - some of what is worrying me is about other people's perception of me. That what THEY see is a greying ageing woman rather than the woman inside. I guess if we didn't have the media telling us that we should all be blonde size 0 with pert breasts and zillion-dollar jobs, then we would all feel more content, but we are encouraged to compare ourselves and find ourselves failing. And that's real ego ... how you compare with others, how you're doing in the rat race, do others admire you Realistically I'm doing just fine, and I am sure there's a lot of people would give their right arm to have my life (no money worries, good health, fine husband, good friends) but when the gloom and doom hits me I just can't see it.
What I feel I need is someone to shake me hard by the shoulders and say "what are you moaning for, pull yourself together". What I mustn't do is allow myself to wallow in all of my gloom or I shall never surface!
Keep a stiff upper lip, and all that ...
Take cover! Hormones on the rampage again ...
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Re: !! Depression !!

Postby minniepauz » Sat Apr 19, 2008 11:36 am

I believe this book with it's live discussion will do it for you (the shaking you mentioned :))
I'm listening to chapter 3 online right now while I'm writing this to you. :) I've had a couple of "aha" moments already.

"the ego constantly lives in a state of "not enough"..... how's that for a simple explanation of so many parts of our lives?
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Re: !! Depression !!

Postby FilleFrançaise » Wed Apr 23, 2008 4:52 pm

Read through all of your posts here... I am so comforted to know that I'm not the only one to feel this way.
As Dee explained, I do think that I feel bad because I'm no longer the same person as I was a very short time ago. Everyone in France is on some kind of AD, but I don't want to go that route. I'll need to wait and see if they're really necessary.

Anyway, thanks again for sharing!
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Re: !! Depression !!

Postby cheri45 » Wed Jun 04, 2008 6:28 pm

Hi. wow, everyone is writing so much in response to this, mine seems a little simplistic. For me, anyway, if I stay away from wheat, ANYTHING wheat, for the 2 or so weeks before my period it helps SO MUCH to keep the depression and moodiness away. I guess that would go for anything with gluten in it too.. which is everything. Health food stores are a good place to go to find 'no gluten' products.
:)
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Re: !! Depression !!

Postby minniepauz » Thu Jun 05, 2008 8:20 am

Cheri...don't ever think your posts are too simplistic around here! :) Sometimes it opens our eyes to a solution that doesn't have to be complicated and we've just been looking too hard. Welcome to the forum!! Where are you in Co? I lived in Broomfield and Durango.....LOVE CO!!
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Re: !! Depression !!

Postby ms_linda » Thu Jun 05, 2008 9:29 am

minniepauz wrote:Personally, I feel that the AD's are more appropriate for chronic depression instead of the "on and off" variety. I've had a minor level of chronic depression since my mid-20's, but was only on Zoloft for about 5 years in my late 40's when I could not lift myself out. I did have to try several before Zoloft, but they either made me tired or didn't have any effect. With Zoloft (AND a move closer to my kids), I was able to take myself off them and have only used SJW at times I felt myself sleeping too much or just generally feeling down.

I've also heard that exercise is the very best solution for depression, but I can't seem to make myself do it on a regular basis....as much as I wish I could!! Each of us just has to determine what is the best path. I believe the problem is when a depressed person doesn't realize they're depressed and therefore doesn't reach out for ANY help.

I feel fortunate that I don't have to take care of anyone but myself at this time in my life. I'm sure it would be hard to make that switch after so many years, but women need to realize how really important it is!!


Since I started this thread (and welcome all the notes since my 1st post!) I have to say I am still off and on with the depression. As I had thought back around the holidays was getting hit upside the head twice. 1. I had just started on thyroid meds as my TSh was all but 90.0, they want that number at 2.0 NO typos there! I have a book here that states around 65% of those who are hypothyroid, as I am have no choice but to go an an antidepressant (AD) 2. I now have had a saliva test and my progesterone is way low, which too can add to depression. So I now started to do Bio ID's, via my doc who is a DO, and use progesterone cream. He also gave me a prescription for Ativan to take as needed. He seems to think it is a fine durg to use and for the most part he is against most of the mega pharma company's and the drugs they manufacture. I also see a talk therapist who trys to avoid AD's but will put you on one if she feels it is needed. She too feels that Ativan is fine to take. I have been taking it more days then not. HOWEVER, there is always a however . . . I have been reading about Ativan and find this;

"On abrupt, or overly rapid discontinuation of lorazepam, anxiety and signs of physical withdrawal have been observed, similar to those seen on withdrawal from alcohol and barbiturates. Lorazepam as with other benzodiazepine drugs can cause physical dependence, addiction and what is known as the benzodiazepine withdrawal syndrome. The higher the dose and the longer the drug is taken for the greater the risk of experiencing unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. Withdrawal symptoms can however occur from standard dosages and also after short term use. Benzodiazepine treatment should be discontinued as soon as possible via a slow and gradual dose reduction regime.
The likelihood of dependence is relatively high with lorazepam compared to other benzodiazepines. Lorazepam's relatively short serum half-life, its confinement mainly to the vascular space and its inactive metabolite results in interdose withdrawal phenomena and next dose cravings. This may reinforce psychological dependence. Because of its high potency, the smallest lorazepam tablet strength of 0.5 mg is also a significant dose reduction. To minimise the risk of physical/psychological dependence, lorazepam is best used only short-term, at the smallest effective dose. If any benzodiazepine has been used long-term, the recommendation is a gradual dose taper over a period of weeks, months or longer, according to dose and duration of use, degree of dependence and the individual. Coming off long-term lorazepam may be more realistically achieved by a gradual switch to an equivalent dose of diazepam, a period of stabilization on this and only then initiating dose reductions. The advantage of switching to diazepam is that dose reductions are felt less acutely, because of the longer half lives (20-200 hours) of diazepam and its active metabolites.
Withdrawal
Withdrawal symptoms can occur after taking therapeutic doses of Ativan for as little as one week. Withdrawal symptoms include headaches, anxiety, tension, depression, insomnia, restlessness, confusion, irritability, sweating, dysphoria, dizziness, derealization, depersonalization, numbness/tingling of extremities, hypersensitivity to light, sound, and smell, perceptual distortions, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, appetite loss, hallucinations, delirium, seizures, tremor, stomach cramps, myalgia, agitation, palpitations, tachycardia, panic attacks, short-term memory loss, and hyperthermia."

So, what do I do about all of that!???

Somewhere in my posts I note that two of my sister in laws are on long term AD's, one has been on Zoloft for almost 20 years. She is like me and hypothroid, but has been that way for about 23 years. Well as time passes I learned that several of the younger generation are on, or were on, or in one case, just went on something for panic and depression. I also just found out a third sister in law was on Xanax for 2 years. Someone posted that in France it seems so many are on AD's, well I am starting to think it is the same in the USA. I have another friend who is fighting the AD route as well. She is active and stays in shape. Exercise may or may not work, I think that too depends on the person.

I've only been doing the progesterone cream for about 2 weeks and now and really do not feel a huge difference. Now my progesterone level was very low, so again I may need to give it time. I just find all of this so frustrating, the wait and see mode . . . then if that is not the solution I have to research and move on. Someone told me it could be worse I could just stay where I was at and not have the energy to research, but my gosh I need to get a life!!

Thoughts and comments are welcome!
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Re: !! Depression !!

Postby Kris » Thu Jun 05, 2008 11:24 am

Hi Linda.... I'm sorry. After reading your post I felt sad. I guess for all of us, who are battling this 'unseen giant' called menopause. There are so many symptoms that have the ability to literally rip the life out of us. I grew up in a "pull yourself up by the bootstraps" family, so i am no stranger to optimism, in fact, I have always considered myself a very upbeat person. It is difficult to get good medical advice, as the internist says one thing... the gyn says another and to make it worse, some say it is all in your head. I do feel weary with all of the things happening in my body. There is so much to do in life and yet it is quite hard to get things done feeling this way.
In my own experience with AD... i have in the past several years taken prozac two weeks before my period is due to start. It really does help me with the depressive thoughts and anxiety I have during that time. I don't take it every month. Just when I feel that my emotions are interfering with my life. After my mom died I suffered terrible insomnia and it seemed as though I went for days on end with little to no sleep. My doctor gave me xanax (in the same family as ativan) ... a very low dose, to get to sleep. i have been taking it.. the same dosage, for over a year now. It really does relax me enough to get a good nights rest. I don't use it every night, but I use it more often than not. I was concerned about taking it in the beginning, but I talked to the pharmacist and my Uncle, who is an Internist and they both said that, at that dosage it is fine to take it for insomnia. And... it has caused me no problems. I don't 'crave' it or need it during the day..... I don't need to take more of it to get the same effect. This is totally MY experience with it and of course i can't speak for anyone else and how it might affect them. I am a firm believer in having a good "quality of life" and if that means taking medication for awhile to alleviate nasty symptoms, then I'll do it, without feeling bad about it. Just my opinion. I could on the other hand go to a therapist and talk about my woes until she, herself, was blue in the face, but i don't think that would help me. (I am in no way saying that many people don't benefit from therapy) I'm doing what helps get me through this uncomfortable time in my life, so I can continue enjoying my life, my husband, my child, etc.

I don't, to my knowledge have the thyroid problems that you are dealing with and I can only imagine how much more difficult it must make things for you. I hope you can find the relief you so greatly deserve. Keep perservering and trying to find help. It does get better!

(At least that is what they are telling me :flower: )
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Re: !! Depression !!

Postby ms_linda » Thu Jun 05, 2008 12:34 pm

Interesting to read Kris as far as your Xanax, and that 1 pill a day or some days does the trick for you. I am the same way on the Ativan, take one in the a.m., most days not all, but more then not. And it smooths things over enough that I get into my day and the end of the day thank the Lord for a good day! There had been a few rough days that I tool a second one later in the afternoon, but only 4 or 5 since late March.

Oh me too, I am from the Pennsylvania Dutch background. You want to talk a tough hard group of people and who believe in the 'pull up your bootstraps and get on with it'!!! They are the sort to smash their finger and look at it and say well its not broken so I can still use it.

I did then call an older friend of mine and got his take on it. He was a Psychologist, now retired and doing other related work. He had time to chat and felt that one a day as needed is not going to make me become an uncontrolled addict. And, he know my background and too mentioned the 'pull up your bootstraps' mentality I come from! How funny is that!?

I started the talk therapist thinking I could talk it out . . . It sorts worked, in that she told me everything I already knew to be true! In short she was a confirmation for me. Oh well, a 10.00 co pay and an hour of my time - think I did that 6 maybe 8 times since the holidays.

I have to be honest and say I felt that taking an AD was a cop out, I NO LONGER do!! I NO LONGER judge anyone who does need something, nor will I ever again! I do agree if you need a medicine to get on with life, then you do. But a year ago I would not have typed that.

Sorry to have made you feel sad! I later this morning did take my Ativan, after speaking with the older friend who assured me it was fine to do, and am having a fine day!
:flower:
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Re: !! Depression !!

Postby Kris » Thu Jun 05, 2008 12:55 pm

Linda :flower: Hi Again!! you didn't make me sad!! Its the unfortunate circumstance we all seem to be going through that is difficult to swallow sometimes!! I laughed out loud when you spoke of your upbringing! Rings "Many' familiar bells in my head. We have just been raised to "get on with it" Sometimes a good thing........ but then again, sometimes you need to take a few moments to just sit down and lick your paws for awhile!!
I am not an advocate of medicating your life away, but i also don't believe in un-necessary suffering. I know some don't agree with that, but this "stuff' we are going through does not just go away, even after a good "pull yourself up by the bootstraps talkin' to." Talking DOES help alleviate some of the stress associated with all this, but the yuck is still there after the talking stops. Having alittle help, along with some good inner peace and knowing it will end at some point, well, it kinda gets you through the days that are rough!
Do what you need to do to take care of yourself.... and try to smile your way through it (God knows we know how to do that :)
Take care!!
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Re: !! Depression !!

Postby FilleFrançaise » Mon Jun 16, 2008 6:13 am

Hello Kris, Linda and all others,
Well, I'd better bite my tongue, because since the first of May, I've been taking very low doses of Prozac. Yes, everyone (including me) in France are on ADs!

Honestly, I feel so much better. The prozac has stopped my boulimia; my appetite was so awful and now, I have no desire to overeat or to eat garbage. BTW: to CHERI in CO; you recommended to stay away from wheat and gluten and you are RIGHT! Wheat products are poisonous for me too.
I'm sleeping better, if I behave with food, drink and caffeine. And, I have more energy and motivation to move my butt.
I'm still having trouble getting up the motivation to exercise but I do believe that that will come.

Anyway, just wanted to say that sometimes meds can help. Keep an open mind and work with a doctor whom you can really trust.

Good luck to all,
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Re: !! Depression !!

Postby ms_linda » Mon Jun 16, 2008 7:04 am

FilleFrançaise wrote:Hello Kris, Linda and all others,
Well, I'd better bite my tongue, because since the first of May, I've been taking very low doses of Prozac. Yes, everyone (including me) in France are on ADs!

Honestly, I feel so much better. The prozac has stopped my boulimia; my appetite was so awful and now, I have no desire to overeat or to eat garbage. BTW: to CHERI in CO; you recommended to stay away from wheat and gluten and you are RIGHT! Wheat products are poisonous for me too.
I'm sleeping better, if I behave with food, drink and caffeine. And, I have more energy and motivation to move my butt.
I'm still having trouble getting up the motivation to exercise but I do believe that that will come.

Anyway, just wanted to say that sometimes meds can help. Keep an open mind and work with a doctor whom you can really trust.

Good luck to all,
Fille

I will have to scroll up and read what you wrote prior! Hey it is fine to change your mind!!! :D

LOL!! :thumbsup: You know, that is JUST fine!! I am not going to scan what all I have posted prior in this thread. I only know that when panic and depression started I let all my sister in laws know (my husband comes from a big family, so I have 10 on his side alone!) Well, one let me know she had been on Zoloft for about 22 years (I had no clue) another let me know she had just gone on Lexapro about 2 years ago, again clueless on my part. I had spoke to another who at the time told me several of her friends had the same problem and some had to go on something. Well . . . here we are 5 months later and she JUST told me she had been on Xanax for about 2 years! Now I was speechless!! :| That is why I have to say LOL!!!

I had shot an e-mail out to my doc JUST last weekend and met with him last Monday. I too am ready to go on something!!! I have talked to so many people and asked for prayer, and have been added to so many churchs prayer lists, and changed my thryoid med and added progesterone cream and also started to Ativan as needed. Well still the off and on depression, milder, but still there. Well, (for now) my doc talked me out of doing it! UGH!!! He now told me to take an Ativan each a.m. (.05mg) or start to take 2 each a.m., if I feel I need more to get into my day.
I do not know you, but you have my support in your decision!

Glad the Prozac worked for you! Did you have to try several AD's before the right one (Prozac)?

I am not done with all of this yet . . . I do meet off and on with a talk therapist who can't write a prescription, but does refer you to someone who can/does. I may meet with her and see what she thinks. For now, I will give my doc's advice a chance to work. But if it does NOT soon even out (my mood) I will be right behind you posting my 'tongue bite' too!
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Re: !! Depression !!

Postby ms_linda » Mon Jun 16, 2008 7:47 am

Kris wrote:In my own experience with AD... i have in the past several years taken prozac two weeks before my period is due to start. It really does help me with the depressive thoughts and anxiety I have during that time. I don't take it every month. Just when I feel that my emotions are interfering with my life. My doctor gave me xanax (in the same family as ativan) ... a very low dose, to get to sleep. i have been taking it.. the same dosage, for over a year now. It really does relax me enough to get a good nights rest. I don't use it every night, but I use it more often than not. I was concerned about taking it in the beginning, but I talked to the pharmacist and my Uncle, who is an Internist and they both said that, at that dosage it is fine to take it for insomnia. And... it has caused me no problems. I don't 'crave' it or need it during the day..... I don't need to take more of it to get the same effect. This is totally MY experience with it and of course i can't speak for anyone else and how it might affect them. I am a firm believer in having a good "quality of life" and if that means taking medication for awhile to alleviate nasty symptoms, then I'll do it, without feeling bad about it. Just my opinion.
(At least that is what they are telling me :flower: )


Kris
So, you are saying that you take Prozac only when needed? And that works for you? Interesting as I had been told that is a med that you need to take awhile in order for it to build up in your cells before you get relief. NOT saying you are lying, just sharing what I had been told. Humph!!

Like I said in my earlier post to the gal in France, I may seek a second opinion on all of this. I agree we all need to live a good quality of life and if you need something to carry you through a rough period then so be it.

Yes, I know that Xanax is in the benzodiazepines family of drugs the same as my Ativan is. I know an much older person (70s) who took Valium in the mid 1970's that too is in the benzodiazepines family of drugs. He took one each a.m. got into his day and after about two years would forget a day then forget for a few days and after awhile, just stopped taking it.

Thanks for sharing!
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Re: !! Depression !!

Postby Kris » Mon Jun 16, 2008 9:44 am

Hi Linda!
Yes, my doc has had me take the Prozac a week before my period starts and then I stop the day I get it. Maybe its a "mental" thing, but it really works for me. I don't have to take it every month.... just when things get overwhelming for me. Again... this just might be all in my head... but if I am having alot of uncomfortable symptoms, before my period and I take the Prozac.... I actually feel relief in a few hours. Ya know, the mind is a powerful thing. LOL.... I'm not sure prozac starts working that fast, but when I feel really bad and I take it.... it helps! I just turned 50 this year and right now i am still getting regular periods. They are still quite 'normal' except the PMS is so much worse. The day before my period starts i am usuall beside myself. I can't seem to focus.. I feel physically bad.... I cry. It definately interfers with my day, especially at work, where I have to talk to clients regularly. So.... for now, the Prozac is helping me.
Honestly, I had a hard time going on it. I had a problem taking Anti-D.... but you know what? It has improved the quality of my life on the days when the quality is gone.... its just a damn long day. I guess everyone has to analyze the options and do what feels right for them. This just happens to be what works for me! :D Have a great day!!
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Re: !! Depression !!

Postby Kris » Mon Jun 16, 2008 11:43 am

Linda..... To add to my previous post.... I do not suffer from "Clinical" depression. I think the reason the prozac works for me like this, is that it reduces anxiety, for me, almost immediately and with the passing of the week or week and a half until my period, it builds up enough to reduce symptoms. As I said.... it really does work for me. That may not react the same way in someone else. It took me awhile to figure out what direction I needed to go with this..........
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Re: !! Depression !!

Postby ms_linda » Mon Jun 16, 2008 12:31 pm

Kris wrote:Linda..... To add to my previous post.... I do not suffer from "Clinical" depression. I think the reason the prozac works for me like this, is that it reduces anxiety, for me, almost immediately and with the passing of the week or week and a half until my period, it builds up enough to reduce symptoms. As I said.... it really does work for me. That may not react the same way in someone else. It took me awhile to figure out what direction I needed to go with this..........


I've been told the same as far as clinical depression, that does not seem to be what I have either. My interest in your post was due to the fact that so many have told me when you go on something like Prozac you either take it or you dont'. Anytime I read of someone who is able to do different then I am told you have to my eyes and ears perk up!

Now my doc did feel that to take an Ativan only on days as needed would work fine for me. Then about a week and a half ago I was feeling very down. That is when I shot him a note to say what do you think about an AD (thinking Wellbutrin, Zoloft, Lexapro . . . one of those or any others I will not bother to name) We set up an appt last Monday, and he was so against me trying anything more!!! Told me to pop the Ativan each day even if I do not feel like I am going to need it. IF I have to, move up to 2 a day. Now he is a DO, not an MD.

My doc just had me start the progesterone cream and tells me to give that time. MONTHS! I was very low in progesterone, which will add to any depression. My thoughts, put me on something until the progesterone builds up again!!!

Boy I hear you as far as time to figure things out! I have been at this for 8 months now! When I started someone told me to give things a year, I thought 'yea right! . . . a year' LOL here I am not too far out from a year.

I have met off and on with a talk therapist who too felt I can work through this without an AD. I guess if you beg her enough she does send you to someone who will write a prescription, she does/can not with her degree. Or if feels you need something, she will of course send you onto this other doc. I only know that as I know someone else who had met w/ her prior.

So that is my saga and thanks for sharing your program! Like I said, anytime I can read, or hear of a plan, that works that is not what (most) docs deem the 'normal routine' I am encouraged!
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