I need advice for someone with depression.

Discussion in 'Fibromyalgia Main Forum' started by JanieD, Feb 20, 2006.

  1. JanieD

    JanieD New Member

    Hello. I have recently learned that someone close to me is suffering greatly from depression. Serious depression with suicidal tendencies. I have had experience with depression in the past: with myself and my mother. But of course, everyone's plight is different. I was hoping someone could help me in an anonymous setting so I could speak freely and hopefully get some advice.
    This person is very close to me and I am just finding out abou the depths of their problem. They have been depressed for a long time and to avoid facing the issues, they have become a work-aholic at school, work, and the gym. No amount of work is enough to keep their mind from frightening and overwhelming thoughs and all they are doing is making themselves more and more tired and more and more weak and thus more and more vulnerable to regressing. They do not want to talk abou the problem because they are embarassed and don't want anyone to know. They dont want to take medicine and just become "numb" and not feel anyhting at all. I have suggested counseling, drugs, lightening the work load (to reduce feeling overwhelmed), but I am not getting through.
    I have known this person my whole life and I am just finding out that they have tried to kill themself very recently. Of course, it wasn't successful due to the fear of it, but I am so afraid. I am scared to death about his and I don't know what to do.
    Can anyone help? Thanks.
  2. Cromwell

    Cromwell New Member

    very close to this person, then ask gently, "would you allow me to accompany you to the doctor to talk about how you are feeling?"

    Try not to be too demanding, you can start by saying, "I want to tell you how much I care about you, and how worried I am that you right now? I would like to help you if you would allow that."

    Sometimes people who are depressed may yell at you or tell you to MYOB but try not to lose it yourself and just stick to your concern.

    Also you may be able to get leaflets from NAMI or a doctor'sffice describing feelings of depression and how they can be addressed, with meds.

    Another tack, is the "white lie". You can say, "You know, a cousin/ (workmate or anyone )of mine sort of reminds me of you. She/he was terribly down and not happy, and it turns out she/he had depression. It took about three weeks or so, but she/he told me how great they felt getting treatment, and how she/he wished they would have done this ages ago."

    Good Luck, tread softly. Love Anne C
  3. Jeanne-in-Canada

    Jeanne-in-Canada New Member

    First let me welcome you, and commend you on your concern for your friend. I need to caution you though, this site won't allow any discussion of suicide, because it feels it isn't equipped to deal w/ it. We can talk about depression though, it's such a common part of this disease. So I'd like to suggest you edit your post (icon at left of your message) to take out references to suicide. It is enough to say she is dangerously depressed, we get that.

    Your friend sounds young, I'm guessing that because of her embarrassment at being depressed. If she is, it's all the more important to get it under control, because young people stand a much better chance of addressing a chemical imbalance and permanently rectifying it. The longer one stays depressed and chemically unbalanced, the harder is to treat they've now found out.

    Something you could suggest is St. John's Wort. Being so embarrassed at being depressed could be part of an anxiety condition and St. J's works esp. well on anxiety. it will help her sleep w/out making her sleepy, it will also help w/ PMS symptoms if she has those. it boosts the immune system too, quite like echinacea, and I'm sure she's heard of echinacea and may be more open to trying something more garden variety. Many people who would never consider taking a depression drug, or any drugs period, have been open to trying a sweet smelling herb. After all, herbals are all the rage right.

    Whether it's strong enough or not, it will be a start. Then maybe she will be thinking clearer and may want to seek more help.

  4. jake123

    jake123 New Member

    Get this person to a psychiatrist (not a psychologist)or go to an ER. I've been taking Celexa for 8 years and if I miss a day or two, I become negative and want to stay in bed.
  5. SueSnyder

    SueSnyder New Member

    I see others have already responded with good advice, so I'll just add a couple thoughts.

    Yes, this friends needs to get to a doctor and get on meds asap... but it's perfectly understandable that he/she recoils at the thought of seeing a shrink. There's still a stigma attached to that in our society. Is it possible that he/she would agree to go with you to, say, a neurologist? Or maybe even a G.P./family type doc who can start the process?

    If they absolutely refuse, I'd be tempted to buy them some St. John's Wort at the health food store and explain that it's a "natural" antidepressant. In Europe it's used for that purpose very commonly, it doesn't require a prescription, and heck, even a placebo effect might be a good thing if it got the friend moving in a positive direction!

    Aside from that, if the friend has a computer you could mention that information and support groups (such as this one)can be found online, and that many of us who deal with depression are very, very familiar with the drill of trying to do ANYthing to get relief from the pain and despair. Many of us have also lived through suicide attempts and gone on to be extremely grateful that we did. Sometimes "talking" with other people who've been there and can make suggestions from experience, without judgment, can make a big difference.

    Good luck, and thanks for being a good friend.
  6. hartogold

    hartogold New Member

    Hi Janie;
    I suffer from bi-polar disorder and have been on anti-depressants since 1993. Actually I was diagnosed with depression/anxiety disorder at first, but in the last two years the diagnosis has been changed.

    Anyway, I commend you for the love you have for your friend. If you can't talk her into getting the help she needs, I would call Mental Health, Adult Protective Services or even the police. I know that that if my psychiatrist hadn't forced me to commit myself to a mental health hospital when I was suicidal in 1994, I probably wouldn't be sitting here typing this response to you right now. I know it sounds dramatic, but we're talking about someone's life here..someone you love. Tough love is really hard, but I know she'll thank you when she is getting better. Good luck
  7. rbecca47

    rbecca47 New Member

    I have suffered depression most of my life, but within the last two years. have been the worse. i have cut my self off completly from family and friends. i don't leave my house unless i have to. the crying and suicidel thoughts became over welhming. i went to my doctor for help. i have tried zoloft, didn't help, i know take seraquil at night. elavil(spelling wrong) in the afternoon, another one for morning. and with all that i see a therapist, and psychortist, my meds have been changed about every two months because they just don't seem to work. abut haveing someone to talk with does help alot.i do think your friend should seek help. i have panic attacks when i leave the house. take a pill for that also. need less to say i don't leave the house often. but getting help is important. i didn't want to admit i had a problem at first, but it got so bad i couldn't go on. i was afraid that people would think i was crazy. but i don't care what they think now. i got help and struggle every day to keep ;my head straight. everyday.
    please try to get your friend help. there is no shame in that.
  8. mars_xmu

    mars_xmu New Member

    It's best to let your friend sort out his own problems, it seems like he is trying to manipulate other peoples feelings.
    I've worked in the mental health field for about 5 years in the past and have come across this type before. When he comes out of denial he will seek help, but he has to do it in his own time.

  9. loops1988

    loops1988 New Member

    when i was depressed i just wanted someone to say they were there for me in whatever i chose to do.
    my parents kept on at me to get myself sorted and my sisters just wanted to shoe me off to the doctors and councelling etc...

    all i wanted was a cuddle and to be told that there was people there for me when i was ready to deal with my problems in my own way.

    just having someone arund you (not neccesserly talking about the problems or even the deppression) just give him/her a cuddle and express you worrys but say you will keep back but are there if needed.

    that would have done it for me.

    i am fine now apart from the nights of crying sometimes but i got through it by anti-deppressents that were given for pain relief (my doctor didnt know i was deppressed but knew i had fms)
    saying nothing and just being there can help tremendsely and you will help if that person thinks of you as much of a friend as you do he/she.

    hope this has helped

  10. JanieD

    JanieD New Member

    I was suprised to see how many prople responded. I guess more people want to talk about it than I thought. I have been talking to my friend once a day, keeping in better contact than I have in the past will help too, I hope. I don't think that "leaving them alone" is going to help, because they may just stay in denial, but I agree that I cannot force someone to change. I have decided to start with St. Johns Wart. Maybe that will be a good beginning. I have also informed my mother and she is going to help me as well. She suffers from it as well and has been on Prozac before. I think that if we can get my friend to at least try SOMETHING then we can begin to get to the root of the problem and help her to stop trying to run away all the time.
    Thanks for all your help and support. I hope these things help. I do have a lot of hope for her and hope she knows how much everyone loves her and how beautiful she is and that that should be enough to start on. All we can do is try, right? Everyone wants to be helped. Thank you.
  11. mnweb6

    mnweb6 New Member

    I was severly depressed when I was a teen, and into my early twenties, and I can garantee that I was not trying to manipulate any one, and was not trying to get attention. I was very confused, and very alone...I can tell you that what helped me the most was people that reminded me that I was not alone, and that they cared about me very much. Also reminding me that I had things in my life that I cared about. I can tell you that at times, things seemed so bad that even being the mother of 2 kids didn't help. It made it worse. I wonder if anyone ever reached out to get help in order to help me??? What I do know, is now when things get really bad, I have learned how to reach out, and what helps the most is people who just tell me that they love me will be there for me.

    I know the embarrassment of this type of situation, and I did lose a lot of friends. I try not to give advice, I normally just tell my experiances, and what has helped me. In this case, I just want to say that I would recommend just letting this person know that you love them and if they ever want to talk, I will be there.

    If this person attempted, most likely there are professional people involved...I know that I was overwhelmed with how many people got involved...It took years to feel normal and that I wasn't just that girl that was depressed!! Suddenly I had a label, and I was extremely "fragile" in their eyes...people watched what they said, and treated me differently...

    I hope you find the help you need...

    God Bless,

  12. jake123

    jake123 New Member

    When I first became "depressed" is hard to say, it was more of a slide over a period of time. The final touch was when my mother died. I could not stop crying. There were more things involved than my mother's death.
    I didn't try to manipulate anyone. Someone at school wanted to use my classroom/lab and it wasn't convenient for me to switch and I couldn't even stay for the day - I started crying before the kids came to 1st period.
    I went to the ER and said that apparently I needed some Valium or something because I couldn't stop crying and I had walked out on my class and I think I'm losing my mind. A counselor came in to talk to me, she sent me to another counselor and that counselor sent me to a psychiatrist who has been a godsend to me.
    My husband never said go or don't go. He was sympathetic and sweet but didn't know what to do. My kids were away at school. I did everyting on my own.
  13. sdown

    sdown New Member

    Doc has me on SAMe. Its a supplement. The best one available my doc said is thru this site. Ive tried other brands but they are not as potent. Your body naturally produces SAMe but you are depressed it doesn't produce enough. I take 400 mg a day. If Im going thru a rough time I take 800 mg a day. Its a great detox for the liver too.
  14. jennypee

    jennypee New Member

    brain fog thick-- gotta make it fast before I forget.

    Tell your friend you'll take them to a doctor TODAY. If you can't get a doctor to see them, take them to the e.r. E.r. will evaluate them and make sure he/she is safe and will instruct them on what to do until they find a psychiatrist.

    Also, in case no one mentioned it, antideppressants don't all make you wierd and numb and abnormal. I think the goal is to have your thinking back to where it was before the depression.

    Good luck, and keep in very close contact with your friend and us too!

  15. JanieD

    JanieD New Member

    I tried to get her to go with me, but she said it was something she had done too long ago to need to go to the doctor right now. I tried, gently, to argue and she said it wouldn't help. I am tryng to give her St. Johns wart and find the counselor I went to a few years ago when I went through some hard times. She is saying she's too embarrassed to talk to anyone they dont know. But I think I convinced her that it would help to talk to someone that can really help, because talking to exboyfriends is NOT the way to go. It's going to be a slow transition from where she was the other night to a better place, but I am glad she finally told someone who cares to help. I am beginning to think that it was a cry for help and that she needs some positive attention. She's been in and out of really bad realtionships for a very long time and I just want her to know that she deserves SO much more. The hardest part is convincing her to feel better about herself and I think that maybe a counselor can help do that. Get all the crap out onthe table. We'll see.

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