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AstonMartyn88

What is your experience of mental health?

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gran died of Alzheimer's

 

horrible illness

 

I would also say ive a couple of people in my family who happily spread the negativity of mental illnesses, and by that I mean they are not very nice people and do things that are questionable to say the least and then come out with utter garbage about depression and being bi-polar etc etc such as a cousin who had a kid young, couldn't give a shit about it, went out every Saturday night, sleeping round town, getting caught with a cocaine habit and then pleading depression

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Alzheimers is actually a physical deterioration of areas of the brain isn't it? I wouldn't put it in quite the same category of mental health problem, although it is an absolutely awful thing to happen to anyone and I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy. Along with motor neuron disease (another brain disease) it's probably one of the worst ways to go.

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My step dad suffered from depression a few years ago. It was kind of difficult for all of us around him to understand what he was going through, as he was there but he wasn't there. He was content to stay in bed all day but he was just very quiet and the funny, happy person I had grew up with had suddenly changed. Thankfully, after a few months he gradually became more outgoing and got better so to speak. 

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Line from a film recently that got me thinking:

"do you ever think, that if people knew how crazy you really were that no one would ever talk to you?".

Obviously I'm not talking about the harsher end of the spectrum but I do wonder how aware of their own crazy people are and sometimes if it's the ability to keep a lid on it that's the problem.

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Ugh I have had first hand experience of motor neurone disease and I could not imagine a worse condition to have.

My ex girlfriends father died from it and I saw his deterioration (and death) over the 2 years I was dating her.

Being a prisoner in your own body whilst it shuts down around you would be **** horrible.

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Line from a film recently that got me thinking:

"do you ever think, that if people knew how crazy you really were that no one would ever talk to you?".

Obviously I'm not talking about the harsher end of the spectrum but I do wonder how aware of their own crazy people are and sometimes if it's the ability to keep a lid on it that's the problem.

 

When alone I like to make up words and phrases that sound embarrassing. The more cringey they are and the more awkward it would be if somebody heard me, the better.

 

Does this support your theory?

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Your username sets off alarm bells.

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Alzheimers is actually a physical deterioration of areas of the brain isn't it? I wouldn't put it in quite the same category of mental health problem, although it is an absolutely awful thing to happen to anyone and I wouldn't wish it on my worst enemy. Along with motor neuron disease (another brain disease) it's probably one of the worst ways to go.

 

yes one could actually say autism is a physical problem as well because its a brain defect! Certain areas of the brain don't work as they should. In fact a lot of mental illness is physical. because its the brain we don't see it like we do with a broken arm or something else.

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Mental illness is no different to physical illness. 

 

You occasionally meet someone who NEVER gets ill, not even a cold. But we all consider that freakishly unusual - most of us get some illness every now and then, some worse than others. And then you see the really unlucky ones who get serious illness - cancer, heart disease, whatever. 

 

But it's not a stigma, either way. It either passes naturally, or maybe you need to see a doctor and get it treated. No biggie. 

 

Well mental illness is no different - a rare few never suffer with it at all, but most of us will get occasional bouts of mild depression or anxiety. It's like the mental equivalent of colds and flu - just part of normal life Again, it either just passes, or you may need to get some treatment. It's a bit of drag, but ultimately no big deal. The unfortunate few get the mental equivalent of cancer - severe psychosis to the point of not being able to function - but for most of us that's probably unlikely. 

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I have been diagnosed with a condition called Dysthymia ...

 

Did the diagnosis help? By which I mean now that you know what you are dealing with, now that you are aware of it, could you then attempt to consciously try to overcome it? Almost make it the enemy that won't beat you?

 

 

I am hoping that knowing more about what's wrong with me will help me to accept it and cope with it in the future. I look at other people enviously but guess you just have to play the hand you're dealt. Too bad I was dealt 7-2 off suit (hold'em reference). Maybe in the future things will improve but for now I just live day to day. There's definitely no beating it, it's a major part of who I am and I can't escape it. I have had it since puberty and will have it until the end of my days. I think learning a way to manage it is the best case scenario.

Edited by villa89

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I obviously don't know how debilitating it is and excuse my ignorance on it (I mean well) but are you ever able to overcome it in a defiant way, even briefly? Or are you sure that 'accepting it' is the only option?

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I was once asked by a therapist, "What gives you joy?" I realised that the answer was, "Nothing. Ever."

 

Boat. Same.

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I had a pretty bad episode of depression a few years back. Quite literally in bed for 5-6 months. It was shit and I can't remember much. I went to the GP and he was decent enough, although I was just given some standard questionnaire and a prescription. The drugs just make you numb, listless, and completely uninterested in sex. I can't really describe what it was like, but it was really **** dull. I think I remember Lars Von Trier talking about making Melancholia, and how he had to find a metaphor to express depression, because having Kirsten Dunst sit around in a bath for two hours would be very boring to watch. Well, it is like that. You're just there, sitting, lying down, day after day, completely locked up in your own mind. It is hard trying to describe it because it is pretty absurd.

 

The people around me hadn't a clue what to do. Many were of the 'just smile' camp, which was very **** annoying, although I do accept it is a hard concept to grasp: how can you just sit there, quiet, and not do anything for days and weeks on end? How can you not enjoy stuff? Still, others were supportive enough, and by supportive I mean they didn't judge or anything, but tried to help in little ways like taking me out for a walk or something, and gave me time to get over it.

 

In the end I just woke up one day and felt a bit better. It was that inexplicable. Although, it's still there, whatever it is, it always was really, and some days you suddenly feel awful and it can go away in a day or it can take weeks, most days you feel OK, but never great, from my experience at least.

 

On the 'stigma'. Well I don't know, most people I meet now just know me superficially, so it isn't an issue. Among those who do know me a little better, a few are a little unsure around me, but I haven't faced anything worse than that.

You have my deepest sympathy CED.

 

The person i'm caring for was off work for around seven months and spent most of that time in bed. Like you no interest in anything other than sleeping and could have slept for 24 hours continually. So I totally get what your saying about Kirsten Dunst.

 

She is in recovery now but it just looks as though she has been programmed. A robot if you like. Doing the things she used to do but doing them because it is expected rather than actually wanting to do them. Something has gone. What i notice most is the eyes. Dead without the usual spark and i also sympathise with the people around you who probably feel they have to keep stepping on egg shells and not say anything negative.

 

It's a balancing act. Even going to see a movie with this person can be traumatic as on a bad day she can be badly affected by noise coming from the movie and actually sitting too close to a crowd of people.

 

Another person i know who also suffered from depression when he went back to work he pulled his work colleagues asside and told them what had been wrong with him and what to expect. That was a very brave thing to do.   

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Hate the term mental health. Its so broad and generic.

 

Anyway, my demons have been known on here by a few, the answer to most problems is a willingness to listen and engage with the services who can help. 6 months ago I took that help and since then my outlook at life has been changed positively. As has different aspects of my life. I feel a lot better and have even started and maintained a steady relationship during the 'help' period. Which is a big achievement for me (as anyone who has seen my dashing mug in the rogues can attest).

 

Working in mental health services helps a lot too as I can use other peoples experiences that ive worked with as examples on how and how not no deal with things.

 

The biggest problem is stigma and the unwillingness to give any treatment other than a truckload of meds.

Edited by Ingram85
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but are you ever able to overcome it in a defiant way, even briefly?

 

Not that I am aware of. Sometimes I can have a few (not too many!!!) beers and relax or play a good round of golf or something but most (maybe all) of the time those experiences just leave you with a bizarre emptiness rather than any happiness. Part of the condition is that you become very goal focused in an attempt to feel happiness but as soon as you achieve those goals there's nothing. Just a blank and it's impossible not to be conscious of the fact that your missing a key component of life (happiness) that other people get. As an example I can't remember anything that makes me happy, so if someone says to you name your happiest memory, I have none. I can't tell any stories about good times or any great shared memories. 

 

As you can imagine it's not easy to describe, basically the part of my brain that's supposed to make me happy and give me positive re-enforcement doesn't work. You can't fake it, it's not a phobia or an addiction that can be overcome it's just something missing. 

Edited by villa89
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OK I think I see and I'm sorry to hear it.

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OK I think I see and I'm sorry to hear it.

 

Thanks. C'est la vie (*or maybe C'est mon vie). There are plenty of people in the world with worse lives than mine, its just a shame that my life will *probably* never be what I want it to be (which is just to be happy and content).

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but are you ever able to overcome it in a defiant way, even briefly?

 

Not that I am aware of. Sometimes I can have a few (not too many!!!) beers and relax or play a good round of golf or something but most (maybe all) of the time those experiences just leave you with a bizarre emptiness rather than any happiness. Part of the condition is that you become very goal focused in an attempt to feel happiness but as soon as you achieve those goals there's nothing. Just a blank and it's impossible not to be conscious of the fact that your missing a key component of life (happiness) that other people get. As an example I can't remember anything that makes me happy, so if someone says to you name your happiest memory, I have none. I can't tell any stories about good times or any great shared memories. 

 

As you can imagine it's not easy to describe, basically the part of my brain that's supposed to make me happy and give me positive re-enforcement doesn't work. You can't fake it, it's not a phobia or an addiction that can be overcome it's just something missing. 

 

 

Respect for speaking so candidly. It must be very difficult. 

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The nuttiest people I've ever known are usually mental health professionals, including one Phil Bogshed who I once witnessed at the end of gig shaking a collecting tin and shouting "Get yet Mental, Get yer mental 'ere"

I have a mate who I'll be meeting for a drink later called Greg, who is a charge nurse in the secure wing at Ashworth (home to Ian Brady). He's bonkers

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I think the stigma is fading somewhat as people become more educated about mental health issues. It seems younger people are much more at ease with coming right out and telling you that they take meds for depression or anxiety, etc., and I think that's great. They have a chemical imbalance in their brain, so what. It should be viewed as such, and people need to get over their hangups. Easier said than done, I suppose, but still, I'm hopeful for the future in terms of public perception. Not very hopeful in terms of people's mental health, though. It seems there are more people diagnosed with conditions than ever before, and you have to think it'll only increase over time.

Edited by maqroll

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