I'm new - and thought i would introduce myself. This seems like a friendly, supportive and active board.....
I am a 45 yr old divorced mom of an (almost!) 15 yr old son. Jon is a freshman in High school, Gifted and ADHD - He is a wonderful, sweet and generous boy, though this has been a particularly tough year for him in school. In January, we lost our beloved Golden Retreiver mix, "Tristan" to Lymphoma after a 5 month fight treating his cancer. Tristan was only 5 yrs old, we had adopted him from Golden Rescue in 2001, and he was wonderful, a perfect character - my 'heart dog'. My son and I were both devastated by his loss. The winter before Tristan died, a stray orange cat wandered into our home and adopted us - we named him 'Pixel'. A month or so after Tristan died, we adopted our fluff-ball golden girl, "Fizzy" who is 2 yrs old. if I have any sanity left at all - it is due to the joy and love my son and pets give me!
I have been treated, off and on, for depression for years.
Like most adults with ADD - I recognised it in myself when my child was diagnosed - but never pursued treatment or formal diagnoses. Surviving on coping mechanisms and antidepressants alone. After getting fired in 2003 because of my poor ADD habits - I pursued formal diagnosis and treatment. Hoping medication would help me, like it helps my son.
The medication helps - but it isn't enough, and my 'coping mechanisms' just aren't enough anymore either. The fragile 'balancing act' I pulled off for years fell apart, and l can't seem to pull myself out of a downward spiral. Most of my life, I've felt like a big 'fake' - people think my life is great, that I'm coping marvelously;balancing single parenting, job, house, involved in my son's school & scouts- to me, it only shows that no one really knows the real me at all - and no one cares to, either.
In many ways, I have a 'supportive' family - but they are so involved with their own lives and problems My sister lives halfway across the country, and my brother recently had his own problems with cancer, jobs, and kids in collge - they really have no time for me. My mentor, best friend and supporter - My dad, died in 2001. My mom is very close to me - but she's simply such a 'different' personality than me - very 'practical and disciplined' and just can't understand why my feelings of depression paralyze my ability to just 'do what i have to'. In her eyes,life is very simple: I just need to 'get organized' and 'do it'.
She has no concept of how impossible that is for me.
It seems as if I keep trying to find a job, keep it and be moderately successful - and I never succeed. ( I don't wanna be CEO - I just wanna pay the bills!) It's gotten to the point where I have either been fired, or gotten to the point on jobs where I just 'gave up'. Nothing I ever do seems to be enough for people - I guess my 'best' is not enough - and it hurts to keep trying and keep failing.
Right now I am surviving on unemployment, temp jobs and substitute teaching.
Therapy doesn't seem to help. thru various times in my life I have seen counselors for various reasons - I can't say they have ever helped at all.
I've been a divorced, single mom for about 13 yrs - my son will be 15 this summer - and thru various difficulties with his dad over custoday, etc - we have often seen counselors - either voluntariliy or thru court-appointed programs. It's nice to have someone to talk to - but I can't afford to pay those rates just to 'talk' to someone - and it's never seemed to change anything for either me or my son ( individually or together).
At best, a court-appointed counselor once told my ex that he had to choose between protecting his only son and his abusive 2nd wife - and he chose the wife and basically abandoned our son. Our son was very happy with this arrangement - and for the past 4-5 yrs only sees his dad alone, away from his step-mom and dad's home. This sounds sad - but actually, without the stress of going back and forth to that chotic household every other weekend, my son is much happier, has more friends and spent most of Middle school on the honor roll. His dad is a once-a-week 'playmate'/ dinner date for him, and my son can have a 'normal' schedule and be involved in school and scout activities without missing every other weekend.
Sometimes I think a counselor could help me - but my experience with them has not been good - so I hesitate to waste the time, effort and money. I have seen a psycologist for myself - and they just never seem to do anything but listen. ( My computer can do that - and this doesn't cost me anything extra!)
My Psychiatrist sees me every 3 months and renews my prescriptions - but he doesn't seem to want to raise or change the medication, or suggest anything different. I have an appointment with him next week.
I'm hoping he can suggest something to improve my situation.
I'm feeling particularly down recently because I've been fighting a nasty bronchitis/ virus thing, and it has just totaly wiped me out and messed up my sleep. I was up at 3AM this morning - sewing! because I could not sleep.
anyway - thanks for listening!