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My Battle with Depression

Me and My Munchkin: My Battle with Depression

Tuesday, 12 June 2012

My Battle with Depression

I am going to share my story with you. This is another hard post to write, as it is something that I have tried to put in my past and forget, but I think that I need to accept it and talk about it, and maybe some of you will be able to relate, and not feel so alone.

Hopefully, I won't feel so alone.

I was 17 when I was first diagnosed with depression. I was studying year 12, also a certificate in children's services at Tafe. I was working part time, doing calisthenics, and hopelessly in love with my high school sweetheart. It all got too much when my boyfriend left school half way through year 12 to do a introductory course to get into an apprenticeship. I didn't have friends at school, at that time I didn't get along very well with girls. I had always sat with my boyfriend and his friends at recess and lunch and now I felt alone.

Me at 17
I struggled with my depression until he and I split up on my 18th birthday. Yes I know, what a great way to remember a milestone! We continued seeing each other (physically) until I met someone. Even then, he continued to come to my house and call me. This didn't help with my situation, as I desperately wanted to make things work with him, but he was on drugs and unstable.

I continued with my depression, feeling hopeless, and unworthy until I met my sons father at 20. It was at that time that I was also diagnosed with a social anxiety disorder. Since my initial diagnosis at 17, I had tried dozens of different medications and found that none worked, or they would work for a few months and then stop.

Although Master A's dad was nice, he wasn't my type, and I went into the relationship reluctantly. I went on with my day to day life, getting panic attacks whenever I was expected to meet new people, or be in big groups of people. I started putting on weight and after 9 months together we discovered I was pregnant. It was a shock to say the least, and only a week before my 21st birthday. I felt trapped in the relationship and unhappy.

Putting on a brave face 2 weeks after Master A's birth
My regular followers would know Master A's birth story, and the stress surrounding the last few weeks of my pregnancy, and the first few weeks of his life. I didn't cope very well, and after his dad went back to work I started to crack. He would work all night, and then sleep all day, leaving me with a baby who refused to sleep through the day, constantly screaming because he was tired. It got to a point where I went to my doctor saying "I don't want my child anymore, I want someone to take him". Of course, this was not the actual truth, and I hate that I let myself get to the point of feeling that way.

I was put on anti depressants and sent to see psychologists. I had my partner pressuring me to find something to do at home to earn money, or go back to work. Reluctantly, I went back to work when Master A was 4 months old, way before I felt ready to cope with the world of a working mother.

I plodded through the next few months, feeling not depressed nor healed. I sat there while my life went by around me. A week after Master A's first birthday I decided that I could not do it anymore and told my partner that I wanted to leave. I moved my things into the spare room, and spent the next 2 weeks crying. I was feeling guilty about walking out and giving up on our "family", and I wondered if I was doing the right thing. I had no financial backing, I was depressed and scared and moving back to my parents house.

I felt like I had failed.

After the move was complete I felt a little lost. I felt free, but at the same time like I was lacking direction. Eight months on and I am feeling better. I know what I want and what I need to do to get there. I am a little impatient, but I am now off all medication, and I am the strongest that I have ever been. I still struggle with Master A. I went through a particularly bad time last month, but I am at peace with myself.

Me now

My battle has been a long one, and I do still worry about slipping into old habits. I now know the warning signs, and will get on top of it before it has the chance to develop.

Have you battled with depression of some form?
I would love to hear your story (remember that this is a judgement-free zone. Any rude or negative comments or posts will be removed).

Linking up with Diary of a SAHM for IBOT

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At 12 June 2012 at 11:12 , Blogger Tubbah @ Organising: My Crazy Life said...

Well done and thankyou for posting this Chrissie, I know this would've taken a lot of courage, as I too have suffered anxiety and a slight case of depression.

Your decision was definitely the best one, as you said, you're stronger than you've ever been. One thing I've learned is you have to do what YOU want/need to do, not what others want, otherwise they hold you back and that is the worst feeling when you're suffering this illness.

I'm not sure if you've read thru all my posts, but I had a fall at work when I was only just 34 weeks pregnant with my 3rd. The stairs were wet and I slipped. I went into premature labour within hours which they stopped thankfully, but he was born 2 weeks later. He had/has heart issues and was in special care which I know you know how that feels. I ended up with a slipped disc and my pelvis was twisted. I constantly had to do physio, see Dr's, specialists etc etc which majorly did my head in as all I wanted was to stay at home with my babies as I had been working full time hours (even though I was part time) for years, and I just wanted to enjoy my kids. Also I had only just gotten the position which I'd been working hard for, just weeks before the fall.

By July I was at breaking point and wouldn't get out of bed, the Dr (not my normal Dr, a work one) tried passing it off as post natal depression but I knew it wasn't I knew it was stress related due to the fall, so he sent me to a psychologist who diagnosed me with anxiety and high levels of stress brought on by the fall.

I ended up quitting my job because it was all too much. I'm still having trouble with my back, my lil man still has heart issues, and I'm still missing my working life pre fall, but I'm so much happier with my life and like you said, at peace :)

I'm still a stress head though lol

At 12 June 2012 at 11:37 , Blogger Footprints Australia said...

Hi Chrissie, I was diagnosed with depression when my youngest was 2 (she's now 15!) - but I think I had episodes of it from about 17 as well.

It is something I want to blog about at some stage but just haven't got there yet. I think part of it is because it seems so very long ago now and I am glad to be well! But it is still a big part of who I am and who I have become.

All the best to you and your little munchkin, he is blessed to have you for a Mum!

At 12 June 2012 at 14:33 , Blogger MsMandie said...

Wow, Chrissie, what a story! I think sharing stories like yours goes such a long way to opening the ears and minds of others who know little about depression and anxiety. Your writing was so open and engaging. Yay for you and your little Munchkin :)

At 12 June 2012 at 14:57 , Anonymous Carly said...

Thank you for sharing. I too have suffered anxiety disorder since I was 17. It is only in recent years I have openly shared my story and have been honest with a lot of the people around me. Even though I have had my anxiety somewhat under control for years the process of opening up and letting others in has made an amazing difference.
I wish I'd had the courage to do it when I was younger like you have!

At 12 June 2012 at 15:56 , Blogger Yvette Bowyer said...

such an honest post! I am so happy you shared it with us! I know that feeling at the docs. I had that with my 1st daughter.. I hope you continue to write about your journey, there may be a few women who may not know the signs are are just plodding along, and in reading your post perhaps they will discover there is help out there...

At 12 June 2012 at 17:15 , Blogger Chrissie Me and My Munchkin said...

Thanks for sharing your story hun! I have read a lot of your posts, but not all. I agree, I'm a stress head too, and learning to let go a bit!
Chrissie xx

At 12 June 2012 at 17:16 , Blogger Chrissie Me and My Munchkin said...

Thanks for commenting! It is such a common illness, and so mis-represented. Women need to know that they are not alone, there is help and you need to do it, for the sake of you, your children and you partner.
Chrissie xx

At 12 June 2012 at 17:18 , Blogger Chrissie Me and My Munchkin said...

Thankyou! All I want is for women to know they aren't alone. And when I was first diagnosed, my boyfriend didn't believe me. He thought there was no such thing as depression. Those who don't have experience of some sort with it don't understand it.
Chrissie xx

At 12 June 2012 at 17:20 , Blogger Chrissie Me and My Munchkin said...

It certainly is a hard thing to admit to people. Some are not so understanding. They will tread carefully or avoid you altogether when all you want is to be treated normally and go about things as normal.
Thanks for commenting!
Chrissie xx

At 12 June 2012 at 17:22 , Blogger Chrissie Me and My Munchkin said...

Thanks Yvette I try to be as honest as possible. It is such a common and serious illness (and that's exactly what it is, an illness) and there is so much help out there! Like I said, sometimes I see the signs again, but usually find they are just a few days of the blues and I move past them pretty quickly. It can be hard to know (and admit) when you need to go and get help. Thanks for commenting!
Chrissie xx

At 12 June 2012 at 17:51 , Blogger sarah br said...

I know depression only too well..Ive suffered from it all my life along with PTSD.. writing about it has made it easier but I still wonder if I will ever fully overcome it.. knowing how to deal with it and the trigger signs helps a lot! x

At 12 June 2012 at 18:00 , Blogger Chrissie Me and My Munchkin said...

Yes it does go a long way to recognise it and deal with it before it becomes too much of a problem. I think that it's possible I may be susceptible to it in the future but I will do whatever I can to stop it. Thanks for commenting!
Chrissie xx

At 12 June 2012 at 21:18 , Blogger BossyMummy said...

Brave post thank you for sharing. It is great that ou are in a place where you know your triggers and signs. Best wishes xx

At 13 June 2012 at 08:21 , Blogger Chrissie Me and My Munchkin said...

Thankyou, it was a hard post to do. As I've mentioned before, I don't like feeling vulnerable.But it's all for the best. Thanks for commenting!
Chrissie xx

At 13 June 2012 at 19:13 , Blogger Jess@Diary of a SAHM said...

I struggled with AND and PND ith my last baby, and am only just weaning off my Meds now.
I think you're incredibly strong to her through all that you have, and come out stronger.

I hope it is just onwards and upwards from here. Xx

At 14 June 2012 at 08:14 , Blogger Chrissie Me and My Munchkin said...

Thanks Jess, anyone that goes through any kind of depression or anxiety is strong. It's a horrible illness, and should definitely be more recognised.
Chrissie xxx


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