Overwhelmed and not sure what to do

Posted , 6 users are following.

Hey all, 

I have yet to see my GP about my possible depression - obviously it'd probably be best to go asap but I'm having to wait until June. In the mean time everything has been feeling extra overwhelming at the minute to the point where it physically hurts, I'm not too sure what to do. I usually self harm when thoughts and feelings get too much but even this is offering no solace at the moment - there doesn't seem to be any moments of relief and to top it off I have become completely unable to fall asleep, meaning I don't get any breaks from it whatsoever!

I have tried to take my mind off it by socialising with my housemates, but I just feel nothing when I'm with them: things I used to enjoy so much, now become more of a chore than anything else. Is there any way to control these feelings until I can see my GP? Or am I stuck in this rut until I can get myself an appointment - and even then there is no guarantee it'll help, I suppose. rolleyes

FYI: Reason I am yet to see the GP is because the only practitioner I feel comfortable speaking with is based back home, I am currently finishing University and am not currently signed on at the practise - I am sorting this out currently but, have no idea what to do in the mean time. 

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13 Replies

  • Posted

    Oh sweetie. (((hugs))) It's such a dark and horrible place to be isn't it? Have you thought about trying some deep breathing and visualisation techniques at all? Do you have any hobbies to focus on? Can you get outside for a long walk? Fresh air and some exercise can also be of help.x
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    • Posted

      It really is a very horrible place to be! I haven't actually, no - it may be something to consider, some relxatation techniques could help. I don't really have any hobbies - I usually love to read, I have three untouched Stephen King books on my shelf that I was so excited to start but I can't keep my concentration so I'm not getting anywhere with them. I am going home for a few days soon, luckily my beautiful little dog is there and I live in the lovely Wales so I can take him on some nice walks and maybe that will help some x
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  • Posted

    Just try to focus on things you really enjoy doing and don't try to push yourself to be around other people at the moment.  I don't mean for you to isolate yourself, but don't put too much pressure on yourself either to appear that everything is happy and normal.  Do you have one close friend that you can talk about your worries to?  I have one close friend I can chat to about what's going on in my life as he went through depression himself after he separated from his wife and has come through the otherside a happier and stronger person.  I also highly recommend the 'Chicken Soup for the Soul' series.  Dozens of them have been written, each one focusing on a different subject, for example Mothers of Special Needs Children.  Each one contains 101 real life stories.  I can't recommend them enough.  Wishing you the best.
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    • Posted

      Hey Skyebeth, thanks for the advice - I have a friend who I could talk to and he encourages me to talk to him but, I don't feel too comfortable about it, he worries so much when I tell him things and I just can't put that on him again so it's easier to say things are just improving. That's really interesting I don't think I have heard of the series, I will look it up and give it a go - I usually adore reading but it's been difficult to concentrate on anything but maybe if it's something I can relate to a bit more, my concentration will hold out - I'll definitely give them a Google search now! x
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  • Posted

    Hi Fee I'm sorry you are suffering at the moment. I know things can get so over whelming that you can't close your eyes or find any peace, and this affects sleep which then makes everything else worse. 

    Have you tried having a warm bath before you go to sleep, and maybe drink some warm milk with honey? Don't drink caffeine before 6pm and definately try not to drink more than 3 cups in a day as you may notice you don't get sleepy in the evening.

    Also, don't feel bad about not feeling anything when you socialise. If the people you talk too are not people you know well, then it's normal to not really feel anything when they talk. Maybe what they are saying is just not interesting, or maybe you are so stressed that other normal things just don't really have an impact. I get odd days where when I talk to people at Uni I also feel a but hollow. But sometimes i think that is down to fatigue and rushing around. Your brain just gets too tired to monitor things like responses to emotional stimuli so you end up feeling flat emotionally. 

    Are you eating properly? I find that sometimes I can get a bit low in mood if I haven't eaten a balance meal of protein carbs and veg. So if you are nibbling on toast or pizza for the past week etc, this is not good for your brain or your mood. Fresh veg and fruit and meat is important as your body will use this to create the chemicals your brain uses to regulate emotions and thinking. Eating salmon or fresh fish to get your omega oils is a good start. Eating walnuts and almonds, a small portion is also beneficial. 

     I know that it seems silly to list food when you are saying you are depressed, but I've just finished my last uni exam and I know my sleeping pattern went to 3 hours a night and my carb cravings due to this went through the roof. Being tired made me more irritable, and less able to deal with stress. Which is pretty bad during exam time. But unlike last year, this year I always made sure I had a good meal each day, and although I feel tired, I feel better for it.

    And I guess the best thing that I can say about dealing with depression that seems to get worse due to pressure from uni and not feeling well enough or good enough to get the grades you want is...try to stay positive. Instead of thinking you hate x topic and it's hard. Instead say i studied x amount last night and ok so I don't get it all, I put the work in and made an effort and I will get there everntually. Having a positive slant on things is really important, especially in depression where emotions and reactions to things tend to lean on the pessimistic and "whats the point" side of things.

    You should feel really proud that you have almost finished uni. And when you get home, your GP can help, sure there is no guarentee, but you can say that about everything in life. All you know is, by trying to get some help you make it more likely that you will get better. And there are lots of therapies out there to help get over depression so it's not one attempt and if all fails nothing will improve. If something doesn't work there is always a different avenue to try.

    I hope you feel better soon, and I hope things are uni are going ok for you. 

    Hugs 

    x

     

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    • Posted

      Hi Sunny, thank you for taking the time to reply to me. My housemates and myself were all very close, we have known each other throughout the three years here and became like a big family, which is why I feel guilty for taking myself out of our socialising (especially being that we're all moving away in a few weeks) but, I just find it too difficult to leave my room and sit with them. 

      I haven't been food shopping for two weeks so, I must admit my diet is poor - but, you are right so I am actually preparing to go to the shop and buy lots of fruit and veg, which I do enjoy regardless so it may improve my mood just to be eating something that I want to be eating anyway! You're right it is all a big cycle, feeling down stops you from going to buy and prepare good meals, you feel tired, down and irritable but you're not sleeping or eating properly so it gets worse! 

      I've handed in my major project and dissertation now, which went extremely badly - and is probably been a factor to why things have been more overwhelming. I still have one more module to go so, maybe it'll be better. 

      Thanks for your support Sunny, it means a lot! x

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    • Posted

      Hi fee

      Out of curiosity what subject are you studying?

      I'm sure the work probably felt bad because you feel bad, but if you are still attending lectures/seminars and still doing the work, I'm sure the material you produce will still pass you on the degree.

      If you are really concerned about failing modules you could talk to your tutor. It may be that you can complete a form that warns the people marking your work that you were struggling at the time, sometimes this can allow for some kind of compensation in how the work is marked if the work you have produced is below your usual standard. I think you can also ask for an extension on current work you have to hand in. You can also try talking individually to the module leaders or your supervisor for the final project and explaining, sometimes they will also be able to grant extensions on your deadlines if there are circumstances that are impacting you etc. xx

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    • Posted

      Hey Sunny, 

      I study Media Productions: unfortunately my disso and final product has already been handed in and marking has begun so there isn't much I can really do, I think it'll pass - just. The product itself is good, there is even interest in it being broadcast on TV it's just the more important dissertation that is majorly lacking. 

      I have one more module left, which I'm not as stressed about - it's a professional practise portfolio module but, I already work studio operations for a TV channel and it's only a small module so it should be ok.

      I would have spoken to a tutor or somebody: I probably should have, I stopped going to lectures/seminars a long time ago but the Uni didn't notice so I had no issues with attendance. I find it very difficult to discuss how I'm feeling and why so it's better to just not. I'm sure I'll pass the year it's just a really horrible feeling knowing that you were on track for a first and now you've slipped to a third. 

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  • Posted

    Hi Fee,

    University can be a sh*t and lonely time - I was depressed at university. But overcame it by seeing a clinical psychologist. I bit the bullet so to speak and told my parents about my mental health problems, it really helps to share it with people who love you. I was lucky in that they offered to pay for me to see a clinical psychologist who really helped me overcome my difficulties. GP's are generally not too clued up on mental health issues and they might try and offer you anti depressents, these generally mask the issues you have rather than healing them. If I were you I would see a councelling psychologist. Also, read feal the fear and do it anyway by susan jeffers, it was a life changing book for me and an excellent read for someone in your position.

    good luck

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  • Posted

    Hi Fee,

    Have you ever thought about seeing a councelling psychologist, I think they would really really help you.

    Also, in the mean time, you should definetly read- Feal the fear and do it anyways. And, Mind over mood. 

    Both are brilliant books for helping you overcome depression.

    I think they will really help you.

    Good luck.

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  • Posted

    Hi, reading some of these replies have been a help for me too. I had a bad time at uni - i ended up quitting after I was constantly ill & missed so many classes. I couldn't admit to myself it was depression. I had to see a mandatory councillor before I left and it really did do me the world of good. I think diet and sleep play such an important role in well being and unfortunately I've been suffering due to not taking care of these things.

    It's really hard to socialise but maybe just try 'be' around your friends-even sat silently watching a film together could make you feel 'with' them without having to make effort. Don't cut yourself off but I understand how much energy it takes to be with people when you're not feeling it.

    As for your work - speak to your tutors... It certainly won't do any harm and things might not be as bad as you think. I thought I was flunking everything when in actual fact I was doing ok. I lost all hope and confidence and in the end I let it take over my life. I still have bouts now and I feel helpless like it'll never truly go away. But just remember you can be strong, you are in control and getting help / speaking to someone will be the best thing you can do... big hugs xx

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  • Posted

    Hi Fee

    If it were me I would probably still talk to my tutor, just in case your final year has dragged your overall mark down. I was exactly the same, predicted a first in the first two years of uni, but my third year, my parents got divorced, my dad came out as being gay and I already took meds to deal with depression, that and my parents selling the house made the whole year so stressful and I felt like i was losing it. Luckily my tutor noticed that I had handed something in late and asked me if I was ok, and I told her what had happened and how down i'd been. She told me to fill in a special circumstances form and I think that just guarenteed that my degree wasn't marked down/failed due to some of my work in the third year.

    I know exactly how you feel though, at the time, even in the first and second year, I didn't feel like I was doing well, and socialising was really akward as everyone else seemed really clicky. It's hard to learn when depression bogs down your brain, even when things are going well, I notice that it takes me longer to pick things up than it does other people. And my memory is horrendous -but I have learned some memory techniques to get around that issue, although the cognitive, comprehension and speed of learning in class etc still feels slower than my uni mates. They all seem so driven and I just felt exhausted all the time.

    Stupid really, but I only just realised that it's possible to get fatigued and tired from studying. I alway thought that exercise and physical stuff made you tired mentally and physically, but learning in itself is a really brain and energy taxing thing in itself. Atm I get times where I have a word on the tip of my tongue but I just can't vocalise it or write it, which slows me down. Note taking in class was always an issue as well, but I did better once I bought my laptop to lectures. (They went too fast, but I can touch type, so when I got my laptop in class that made things easier for me).

    But in regards to the learning and feel fatigue, sometimes the usualy 8-9 hours of sleep I would usually get just isn't enough. When i'm actively studying and revising I usually sleep 11-12 hours otherwise I just end up with brain fog sad - and look like a zombie (and feel like it). I used to feel really bad about sleeping so long, feeling like others survived on less and did more, why couldn't I do the same? But everyone has to learn their own limits and what works best for them. On top of that, practically every single month I've attended uni I've caught a cold or had flu. The end of Nov, 14 and all December and beginning of January I had a really bad cold, chest infection, feeling tired etc - and being ill all the time on top of stress of time keeping and getting to class and weekly assignments. Well...anyway, I think anyone who has depression and managed to get through a degree should pat themselves on the back. So many times I almost gave up. But yeah, diet, taking vitamins, trying to get some exercise, and not focusing on the negative side of things really helped me this year.

    I was never offered any kind of therapy or councilling for my first degree (I'm study graduate psychology conversion course atm), but you may find it helps. Just remember that everyone puts on a brave face, and it all looks effortless in passing but in reality I would imagine that most people, even without depression, struggle to get things done. Just don't be too hard on yourself, and keep being positive about yourself, and don't compare yourself to others as no one is the same. Even if you don't do as well on somethings as your friends, don't feel too negatively about it.Everything you do is a learning process that you are constantly adapting too, and no-one made a rule up about the speed in which you should cope with things or how you learn, some people learn faster and some slower, it's just the way people are. I know that's hard to accept as things in uni are always really competitive and there is like this unspoken rule that everyone should be pushing for a 1st or a 2:1 and that your stupid if you don't get those marks...but you just have to do the best you can. 

    Anyway, hope things get better for you, hopefully summer will be on it's way soon with less rain and more lighter evenings. I always find that helps.

    Hugs

    x

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  • Posted

    Thank you for all of your comments and kind words, it's really nice to have support and hear that others have been in the same boat - Uni definitely is a struggle, even for those without depression and I'm glad and Chris, Sunny and Kittyal - I'm glad you all found some help and solace with councellors/tutors.

    It irritates me because I absolutely adored Uni, I loved my friends, my course, my life - everything. It was the best decision I ever made coming to University but, at the beginning of my third year I was attacked and literally everything changed over night and suddenly I became a version of myself that I totally did not recognise, still don't. 

    It may help grade-wise speaking to my tutor but at the same time, I know if I tried I'd break down, I have never physically said what happened to me or even really hinted around it to somebody face to face, so trying to explain what is going on in my head or why is genuinely paralysing. My tutor is a nice guy but, the thought of telling him that I am struggling makes me want to be sick :S This is why going to see my GP is such a big thing for me, I'm terrified to discuss what happened and how I'm feeling sad

    I have been making an effort, the last few days I have been lying in bed until 5pm - I either sleep way too much or not at all, no happy medium. But, today I forced myself up and spent time with a friend, which was nice. And I'm at work all weekend which, is a horrible thought and makes me feel worse but - at least I will be doing something I suppose.

    xxx  

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