All people on the internet can do for you is to listen and respond. We can offer our support through words and remind you that you are not alone. We will be here in the middle of the night. We will hear you, and we will try to help.
Move forward with the hope of treatment and remission. You need to be seeing a psychiatrist and a therapist. Depression is hard, and you may not have much energy or functionality today. That’s okay. Make your one task for the day “Make an appointment with a psychiatrist”, and even if there is a long waiting list, set the appointment and put it on your calendar so that you will have help in the future. Do the same thing tomorrow, only with a therapist.
If you already have a psychiatrist and therapist, stay vigilant in keeping your appointments and taking your medicine. Start to build your toolbox of coping strategies,(that link is to a list of all of my coping tools) and use it when you’re in pain, even if that means you are using it all day, every day. You cannot be cured, but your pain can be managed. For your next appointment, take any notes you can on your symptoms, triggers, medicine effects/side-effects, sleep problems, eating problems, and daily moods. There is no wrong way to take these notes, just write down information every couple of days about things you experience in your illness. The important thing is that you have everything written down for the doctor. The doctor will only be as good as the information you give them, and you are your best and only advocate as the patient. Don’t rely on only your memory to communicate with your doctor, because memory is fickle and fallible, and doubly so with a mental illness already in play. You have a responsibility to yourself to give your doctor good information. Hopefully, they will give you medicine(s) to help the way you are feeling.
If you become suicidal, tell someone immediately and let them help you. Do not be afraid to go to the hospital, because that is the quickest, most effective way to improve your mental state and make your brain livable again. You could be feeling relief in as little as three days! Wouldn’t that be wonderful? That is what a psychiatric hospital is there for. It has worked for me three out of three times. I am still alive because of hospitals.
So, now you’ve got your appointments but will have to wait a while. Your symptoms will not respect that waiting period. You are still being bombarded while you wait for help. It hurts very much, and all mentally ill people are forced to be very brave. In order to survive more comfortably until your appointments, it’s time to use some coping skills. These need to be written down just like your symptoms, but this paper is for you to keep and refer back to whenever you are seeking to reduce your suffering.
Any time you realize that something just made you feel a tiny bit better, write it down and do it again when you hurt. That is a coping tool, and if you use it enough, you will eventually start remembering to use it. At that point, you’ve turned your coping tool into a coping skill.
I have dealt with depression enough to have been forced to learn how to cope. That’s just what mental illness does. You either cope or you die. Sometimes you’re inches away from death, with only a small piece of comfort keeping you here. So then your job becomes finding those small pieces of comfort anywhere you can, and learning how to make more of them, and then more. Even just a minute of relief can save your life.
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