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Honey Bee
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 114
   Posted 7/8/2007 7:42 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi there, I am a newbie to these forums and usually read the Bipolar one but in this instance thought it would be better posting on this forum as our current problem is only about depression.

To cut a long story short my husband and I have been together for 20 years and he was diagnosed as having Bipolar Type1 2 years ago last month, although he has suffered with it since he was around 13 years old (he is now 38). As is usual with this disorder we have had many many turbulent highs and lows but the real problem we are struggling with is the depression side to it all. We can cope with the highs but I would say that for most of my hubbies life he has spent more of it depressed than high. I also suffer from anxiety, panic attacks and have struggled with depression so reading people's stories here fully appreciate what a totally exhausting and devastating illness it is.

In the past 2 years I would say that my hubbie has been depressed for about 80% of the time and maybe had 3-4 high periods. When he was first diagnosed it was like a huge light had been switched on, finally finding out that everything that he had felt and most things that had happened in his life was due to the Bipolar. We found out about the BP due to a few separate instances and then went to his doc who referred him to a psychiatrist. He was prescribed Effexor and is now taking Lithium as well but he has also taken Epilim and Zyprexa in this period.

I would say that for the first 6 months after this everything was great and he said that he actually 'felt' normal for the first time in his life. However, we really now think most of this feeling was down to the relief and euphoria of getting a diagnosis and also educating ourselves on the subject. Gradually since then he has had some very bad periods of depression of which he is in one now and the meds just don't seem to be having any effect at all. He is also suffering from terrible insomnia to the point where we think there is no point continuing with the medication as it seems to be doing nothing but make him unable to sleep. I was always for the meds but now am severely doubting their effectiveness. He sees his psychiatrist about once a month but the level of her care is really just writing him a prescription - she hasn't really helped in any other way. We did move house and ask if we could possibly change to someone else but were told by his doctor that he was very luck to even have been put in a psychiatrists care and there was no chance of getting another one! We live in Queensland, Australia and the mental health system is severely lacking in funds and staff.

Anyway, at the moment things are really bad for us. We don't have any real family or friends to rely on, it is just the two of us and my hubbie just feels that there really is no hope for him feeling any better. He also says that even if he could feel better now then he would just be dreading the next depression and he just can't cope with that, he is so tired, exhausted and sick of fighting it all of the time. Due to situations that have arisen in our lives due to family stresses (his family is a complete nightmare, his dad and 2 sisters are undiagnosed but definately suffer from BP and his mum just buries her head in the sand and hasn't spoken to him since he tried to talk to her about the bp 2 years ago). His dad has been out of the picture for 8 years and has never tried to make contact since him and his mum got divorced.

He says that he feels so lonely all of the time and the best description of him is that he is 'too broken' from everything that has happened/how he has felt to ever feel better again. He says that there is nothing he wants to do in life, he is totally worthless in the world and that if he didn't wake up tomorrow it would be a blessing (for everyone - especially me, his words). He cannot face trying any more medications as going to see the psych just seems like trial and error - he really has given up on our life and feels genuinely like there is no hope for him. No amount of positivity from me seems to make any difference now to his state of mind.

We are both feeling at the moment that maybe it would have been better to stay in the dark about the diagnosis as we feel that we had our hopes raised by the doc and psych only to find ourselves in a worse situation now.

He is such an amazing person to me, has a wonderful heart and we are soul mates. I cannot imagine life without him but just feel helpless as to what we can do now as he has made such a huge effort in the past 2 years to only end up back here. So I wondered whether anyone has had similar experiences with feeling positive after diagnosis and then ending up feeling worse after supposed help and treatment and any thoughts on what we could do now, if anything? Does anyone have positive experiences to share of getting well AND staying well?

Thanks for reading.

Post Edited (Honey Bee) : 7/9/2007 1:23:39 AM (GMT-6)


SnowyLynne
Veteran Member


Date Joined Apr 2004
Total Posts : 1539
   Posted 7/8/2007 8:36 PM (GMT -7)   
I suggest he see his Dr & have a heart to heart with him/her.The meds aren't doing as they should.He too has to try harder
& know it's hard to do................
SnowyLynne


djdaz_1985
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 2408
   Posted 7/9/2007 2:24 AM (GMT -7)   

Hi there,

It is a shame that the Australian Mental Health System is so lacking in funds. Coming from the UK where our National Health Service has the same problem, I can sympathise with how hard it is to get to see anyone. Your doctor has a duty of care that goes beyond writing a prescription and I think it is a great shame that he will do nothing else. Is it possible for you to get an independant second opinion? Perhaps moving doctors would be something to consider (But keep the same psychiatrist)? It might also be a good idea to look into Mental Health Services in the area that you want ot move to. Whilst it may be true that getting a psychiatrist is like finding a needle in a haystack, there may happen to be one available in the area you want to move to.

Keep us up to date with how you are getting on and stay strong.

Darren 


Everyone has a guardian angel. They help pick you up when you fall, comfort you through your times of need and help you appreciate the times when things are going well.
 
Moderator - Epilepsy Forum
Co-Moderator - Depression Forum
 
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Honey Bee
Regular Member


Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 114
   Posted 7/9/2007 2:36 AM (GMT -7)   
Hi Darren and Snowy Lynne and thank you for your replies.

Darren, we are originally from the UK and lived there for over 30 years before moving to Aus 4 years ago so appreciate that the NHS is not much better. I also went to my docs several times for depression and anxiety in the UK but got very little help unfortunately. Sorry I was unclear in my post that we have already moved a year ago and asked at the time about changing then.

Thanks again for your suggestions though they are appreciated.

mogli
Veteran Member


Date Joined Mar 2006
Total Posts : 1191
   Posted 7/9/2007 8:58 AM (GMT -7)   

Honey Bee,

I posted a reply in the BP forum, but I also wanted to say Welcome to HW, I'm glad you found this forum!


Mogs
 
Bipolar II, Anxiety/Panic Disorder
--currently not on meds for bp--


djdaz_1985
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jan 2006
Total Posts : 2408
   Posted 7/10/2007 3:41 AM (GMT -7)   
I am glad to hear that you have moved doctors. I am sorry that you didnt receive much treatment here in the UK either. (Although it doesnt surprise me much... I hear of many people who are/have been let down by the NHS.) You can always guarantee having support here if nothing else!
 
I hope things improve
 
Darren 
Everyone has a guardian angel. They help pick you up when you fall, comfort you through your times of need and help you appreciate the times when things are going well.
 
Moderator - Epilepsy Forum
Co-Moderator - Depression Forum
 
Help support the forums so we can support you:  http://www.healingwell.com/donate
 


loving frustrated wife
Veteran Member


Date Joined Jun 2007
Total Posts : 865
   Posted 7/14/2007 4:13 PM (GMT -7)   
Hi Honey Bee,

I just thought I would send well wishes to you and your spouse and hope that you are doing better and finding your way to the help.

LFW
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