Hello all. My name is Noah. I'm a health researcher who has dealt with mental illness on and off for a few years now. I am wondering if anyone has had a similar experience to my own. I just didn't even realize I was struggling until it was way too late.
While in high school, I am fairly certain I was depressed for at least the last two years (in retrospect). I was incredibly fatigued and had no sense of direction, even though I worked hard. Some days I was so burnt out I would just lie in place for hours and oftentimes I wouldn't talk to any of my friends for weeks. It didn't feel good, but it didn't really feel like mental illness. And for a while, I was able to get things done without any sense of existential despair.
Fast forward to uni, and I actually feel pretty good for the first few months. I looked back and realize I was kind of in the dumps, but I seemed to be better off now (even if I was kinda awkward). I was enjoying my life until I went home for Christmas and then came back. All at once, it hit me. I just felt like I had nothing and that so much of my life had been miserable. I felt so bad some days that I was paralyzed in place for hours. And because of suddenly this onset, it took me months and months to actually get to a better place. I was very motivated one day and crushed the next.
I realize this was probably a major depressive episode, and eventually, I did seek counseling. But it seems that ever since then, I have never been the same. Things don't come as easily, I'm always grasping for lasting happiness even when things are going well for me. I don't know what it was that changed, yet I just have this sense that I've been in a sort of dysthymia for years.
I've heard that depression can permanently change your brain. I'm hoping that's not my case. Yet I'm wondering if others have had a similar experience, and if so, have things gone quite back to normal?
Shared experiences of life, and the path that has led you to where you are.
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