Antidepressants aren't working

Posted , 4 users are following.


I've been receiving treatment for depression and anxiety for about 3 months now, the problem has been pretty bad for about 10 months or so. However, all through my life I've had depressive episodes and anxiety issues and it seems that all that happens is that they just get worse and worse.

The first time it was really bad I was in sixthform and they basically forced me to go to the doctors and get help. I was given a little counselling (made me feel worse) and was put on fluoxetine, I took this for two weeks and what I can only assume happened is that it brought on a manic episode and I stopped taking it after those two weeks, however, my elated mood continued, I was out every night, spending a lot of money, talking and meeting all sorts of new people, I took up an obsession with drawing, I moved out of my dads and in with a girl I barely knew (i slept on a mattress on the floor in the corner of her living room and was perfectly happy doing this), i bought a kitten with said girl, i was sexually risky and had the belief that the pain i had suffered some how made me incredibly desirable and superior to everyone. This was all very out of character for me, I'm usually very shy and quiet and pretty sensible, this carried out for about 2/3 months. I think I had minor periods of this over the following couple of years, then I got really ill and spent 4 months in agony until I had surgery, but this brought on a very deep depression and have since stayed this way. This time round, I again didn't seek treatment, but my doctor basically asked the right questions and got it out of me, I've since been on beta-blockers and diazepam for anxiety neither helped, and I've been on sertraline and mirtazapine for depression, neither have helped either. 

My mum had a history of serious mental illness but she died when I was 10, and I was sexually abused when I just turned 13 and was bullied for years by my step-mum. I suffer from panic attacks, generalized anxiety disorder and am really struggling, I don't have friends and have very little family, all of which are in a different city any way.

I guess what I'm asking, if the antidepressants aren't working could it be something else? Is there something else I could try? I haven't told anyone a lot of this information, this is sorta a last ditch attempt to get some answers as I struggle even telling my doctor straight, I spent years hiding how I felt. Help please????

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4 Replies

  • Posted

    Hi, firstly if you don't feel like treatment is working you need to go back and speak to your doctor. They can refer you for appriate support, including cbt treatments. 

    If you feel like you can't wait to see your gp ring 111.  There is also the samaratians you can ring to speak too. 

    Keep going, the support you need is there. 

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  • Posted

    Hy there, you should pluck up the courage & go back to your GP, or if you feel uncomfortable with them go & talk to another, I 'get' how you're feeling as I've also suffered for years (thinking back) with manic depression, but I never understood or realised what is was. . 

    I was put in sertraline 11 months ago, which has helped stabilise the moods, although I have had to increase the dose to its max. 

    Getting referred to a counsellor was a great help & I would recommend that, as an option?

    It sounds like you had a really rough time of it & that you've suffered more than your fair share, however you're not to blame, how could you be?

    I really hope that you get better & wish you all the success!! Ps: well done for posting smile

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  • Posted

    Yes, well done for posting and taking the first step towards getting the help you need. You've had an awful lot of stuff to deal with, so no wonder you feel very alone.

    i can relate to you having manic episodes where you do strange things you wouldn't normally entertain doing. I can never understand why sometimes I go into overdrive with cleaning, washing and ironing. I would clean windows at 3.00am then iron till 5am, that's not the real me.

    other times I'm the complete opposite. Don't get up till lunchtime, then just lie on the sofa watching tv? Sometimes never even getting dressed. I was a Jekyll and Hyde person, all or nothing. I was convinced I had bipolar but this was ruled out by my GP, the counsellor i saw and a physciatrist.

    i had several different anti depressants over the year. Beta blockers worked well until I developed asthma and then my GP wouldn't prescribe them

    If you feel you can't tell your GP you're problems, then write them down, like you're post here and give it to you're gp to read when you go to see him/her. I've done that several times and find it does help.

    Make an appointment with your GP and ask about being referred to a counsellor and possibly CBT.

    you will start to feel better with help and maybe different meds. I no longer have these manic episodes, but have anxiety episodes where nothing seems to help apart from alcohol, which brings even more problems and confusion. Good luck and make that first step, telling you're GP you're concerns.

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    • Posted

      Thanks for replying, I think writing it down would be a really good idea, because i struggle to verbalise anything when I'm anxious and end up going full panic attack mode when I can't find the words. My doctors really good, she keeps regular appointments with me every week to see how I'm doing, she said she think it was a good idea to do things through the nhs because she said I need something more immediate than the waiting times I'd be restricted by and that they only have treatments for a certain time frame, she gave me loads of details of other counselling services that are free, but I'm scared to go in and tell someone else, I just start feeling anxious when faced with that sort of situation like the walls are closing in, it's an endless cycle really! I honestly feel like I can't make any choices, even small ones have me feeling like I need to escape, I don't really know how to make myself better, it's upsetting because sometimes I think to myself 'youre ill thats why you are like this' other times I feel like, i dont know, what if its not true what if I'm just lazy, or what if I'm just unlikable, what if I just need to get a grip. sad
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