Depression Marathon Blog

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Diagnosed with depression 17 years ago, I lost the life I once knew, but in the process re-created a better me. I am alive and functional today because of my dog, my treatment team, my sobriety, and my willingness to re-create myself within the confines of this illness. I hate the illness, but I'm grateful for the person I've become and the opportunities I've seized because of it. I hope writing a depression blog will reduce stigma and improve the understanding and treatment of people with mental illness. All original content copyright to me: etta. Enjoy your visit!

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Slightly broken

I hate writing about this, but my social worker suggested it might help. She thought it might normalize what I've been experiencing. She suggests it's likely many of you experience it, too. I don't know. I hate to admit it. So I hope she's right.

My brain is broken. That's what it feels like. I've been having trouble with my thinking. Violent thoughts, disturbing thoughts, and discouraging thoughts have been intruding on me lately. I'm still doing well. My mood is good. I'm running well. Work is okay. So there seems no reason for the thinking except that it is one of my symptoms which occasionally pops up. And I hate it.

Thinking like this disturbs me. The thoughts are disturbing. I have violent, horrible thoughts about Puck getting hurt and not being able to do anything about it. I have irrational thoughts about a substance spilled on a bridge being some sort of flesh eating acid. I have discouraging thoughts about being inept, not good enough, stupid, lazy, etc... The thought content disturbs me.

Also disturbing, and maybe even more so, is simply having the intrusive thoughts. They make me feel different, abnormal, and crazy. They spur ranting and raving about wanting to be normal. They scare me, anger me, and worry me. I hate them. I just want them to go away.

There, I said it. I guess it would help if any of you can relate. My social worker tried to calm me down today during at least one of my rants. She tells me these thoughts are not as abnormal as I fear. Aren't they? I don't know. I hope she's right.


Stationary Runner said...

Ooooooh yes. I can so relate. This post made me tear up because I think I know just what you mean. Combatting negative/intrusive thoughts is something I am actively working on. I STRUGGLE with this. And yes, I often feel pretty crazy, too.

My therapist and I have been talking about other people's experiences because I have this sense of being so alone in what I go through. He's pointed out that I am very definitely not alone - that just as I am good at covering up my internal struggles, other people are, too. People don't talk about these things. Not really. I rarely tell anyone I know how I am feeling because I'm utterly convinced they won't get it.

I get a lot of intrusive thoughts... Images of horrible things happening to myself and others, images of me hurting myself permanently. I explained to my psychiatrist that these images don't mean that I am going to hurt myself - but they are incredibly disturbing.

Anyway, yes. You are not alone.

Erica said...

I can completely relate, because I am feeling the same as you right at this moment. Your thoughts are not abnormal. You are not abnormal. Everyone has these thoughts; the difference between us and "normies" is that our brains magnify these thoughts beyond their usual severity, taking us to a far darker and more difficult place.

I have struggled with going to see my therapist this summer, as I live farther away from campus (where she is), and so I've only gone once; I canceled my previous two due to "being sick." Which, in reality, I was sick...just not contagiously sick.

I have one scheduled for tomorrow. Right now, I feel like shit and I have no desire to go. But your post has reminded me of the importance of talking about this to another, despite the crippling thoughts in my head and the weakness in my muscles, I'm gonna go tomorrow.

One of the few good things about this disease: we all have these crappy, scary, disturbing thoughts. We're not alone; thank God for that.

Kelly said...

You are not alone. I get these thoughts, too. Sometimes I can push them right back into the darkness from which they came, and sometimes they linger far longer than they should.

Borderline Lil said...

Unfortunately I relate all too well to this. I've had these thoughts since I was a child :( Since coming off antipsychotic meds it's been even worse. You have my love and sympathy Etta xx

etta said...

Thank you all for your support. It does help to know I am not alone, but at the same time, I feel really terrible that you all have to experience these thoughts, too! It's just another symptom of this nasty illness we all have to push through, I guess. I wish you all success in sending the thoughts back to the dark place from which they emerged. We deserve better!

michael platania said...

I often feel that if people only knew what went on inside my brain....I have finally come to accept them for what they are - random thoughts I cannot control, but I also do not give into them. Now, when they occur, I think "Oh, here is another one of those types of thoughts" and I wait to let it pass, which it always does. Maybe one day we can all share the specifics of our thoughts, though I don't think I am ready to do that yet.

Tina Fariss Barbour said...

Etta, you are not alone. I have thoughts like that, too, and not just related to my OCD. I think some of it is related to my depression. I've heard that everyone has these types of thoughts from time to time, but people with anxiety and depression issues tend to dwell on them more, or be more horrified by them. My therapist tells me that I lend too much credence to my thoughts--that they're "just thoughts." But they can still be disturbing, I know.

Anonymous said...

I too have intrusive thoughts that leave me feeling abnormal and even evil:( I also perseverate on my thoughts whic is very distressing to me. You are not alone...I'm sorry you're struggling too.

Anonymous said...

I'm not just a spokesman, I'm a member! I hate when I can't turn off the self destructive thoughts. I too, try to stop, recognize that it's one of my tapes, and act instead of listening to it. Some days easier. Some harder.

HBF said...

I'm so glad I found this post today because this is exactly what I'm struggling with lately.

I haven't been doing terrible but I have so many negative thoughts it makes me feel like my medicine and therapy aren't really working and I feel so down but not quite depressed like usual-it's a weird in between place. My biggest struggle is the shame and feeling like I'm not "well" enough and either I don't try hard enough or my treatment plan isn't good enough.

In the past I've summed it up that my brain is just wired wrong, like all the negative thoughts become near instinctual and it's so hard to reroute those circuits... I'm right there with you, thank you for putting this out there :o)

jim said...

Learn to sit quietly for 30 minutes everyday in meditation. Think about nothing but loving yourself and accepting yourself. After a few weeks you should see some improvement. It takes discipline and patience and acceptance (there is that word again) but it really does help. The more you do it the more peaceful you will feel. You will learn that the thoughts can make you feel bad, but they can not hurt you.
I went through years of this, by the way.

Shelly said...

You are NOT alone in this... thoughts are powerful, more powerful than we realize. I like to be by myself but when I am in a severe depression and anxiety period - like now - being alone with my thoughts scare me. It helps to share with people who understand, like you are doing here. Thank you for your courage. And you are NOT alone...

Anonymous said...

I admitted to my therapist recently that I've struggled with intrusive, horrible thoughts since I was a teenager. It was one of the hardest things I've done. His reaction helped normalise it, as he pointed out 99.7% of people have these thoughts at some point too. The difference is the value/weight that I give to them.

Ever since, I have tried to remind myself of this fact whenever one of these thoughts pop into my head. I mark it consciously "oh, there's one of those random thoughts" and try to let it pass. I'm getting better at it but not without practice.

The mind is a weird and wonderful place - try not to judge yourself by what it conjures up.

krystal lynn said...

I have been told the same thing, my thoughts are not uncommon - they are things most people think of but dismiss. I give them weight and then feel horrible for having the thought. I wish you wellness.