Rant about battling depression

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Eren
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Rant about battling depression

Post by Eren » 2 months ago

This is a rant thread. Please abstain from the usual "you should think differently bro" bs. That's not what this is about.

As far as I can remember, I have always been prone to depression for several reasons.

The first one is upbringing and ridiculous parenting. To fully explain this, I would need to write a book and do a lot of soulsearching sessions. I am skipping that ;)

The second one is genetics. I am simply prone to depression because of my personality but also because of how my brain is wired (it is what it is).

The last category is basically a lump sum of everything. Bad childhood, bad environment, hair loss was a huge trigger, unfortunate events, never ever doing something fun at age 13-18 (such as going on a vacation in holidays because parents had zero money).

A part of the reason for my depression is my own fault. I wanted to become a doctor back in the day, but failed. Instead of thinking "Oh well, shit happens" I freaking acted like it was the end of the world. In hindsight, this was a completely ridiculous way of coping. So, that's my own fault.

The second event that triggered MDD was hair loss at 18. At least on this forum, people understand. I am on finasteride since the age of 22 and wanted to be on it much earlier but retarded GP ruined it for me. As a teenager who was already on the brink of depression, you're not THAT critical about a GP. You tend to trust them.

Anyway, here is the thing. My symptoms are: feeling agitated/irritated 24/7, having no motivation for anything (apathy), not being able to experience the feeling of pleasure, slow thinking, the feeling of just waking up 24/7, insomnia. I have this continuously since 2012.

As far as I know, there is no real cause anymore (can't bring back my hair, and I am already on finasteride. hair transplant is not an option because I have diffuse hair loss). I simply hate everything, any job, life itself etc. That's how I feel sometimes without too many good reasons.

I had one week in which I miraculously recovered from the depression in 2017. I can tell you, life is completely different and much easier to live if you don't have dead tired brains. You're smarter, faster and much more into life. And yes, your thought process changes. I even forgot how energetic one can be if MDD is gone. Unfortunately, the brain chemicals changed back to shitty and I felt dead tired again.

I started SSRI, was on it for 2 weeks. The feeling of agitation went away (temporarily quit with the SSRI because of stomach flu). I did not die from SSRI, nothing really happened. It worked a little. When I am recovered from the flu, I'll be back on it. Better give it a try I suppose.

What I tried before SSRI and all of them did not work
- Therapy for 7 months (complete waste of time, made my depression even worse)
- Doing activities that used to give me pleasure.
- Working out 3x a week since 2014 and still doing it (works temporarily and the effects last at most for half a day)
- Working and staying active (I am not even going to start about this one lol)

In the end, I learned the following. The guy that I was, everything that I thought, being motivated, energetic. Literally, all of that IS your brain. Your brain makes you who you are. If you have a chemical imbalance, life sucks.

You don't really decide what gives you pleasure. You simply do an activity and if your brain produces the right chemicals, you'll experience joy and that's it.

If I could go back in time, I sure as hell wouldn't let myself fall into depression. Everything suffers because of it, my job, my life, everything.

Good thing is, the SSRI seemed to do something without serious side effects. So fingers crossed.

What sucks most is, that no one can really help you. It's the brains.

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Re: Rant about battling depression

Post by Admin » 2 months ago

I know all too much about this, trust me. When I was 22, at the end of an infernal downward spiral, I was told by my GP that I probably had something wrong with my brain and I should just accept that I had a disease, and that I would now be depended on a buttload of psychiatric medication for the rest of my life.

For those who don't know my story, there is of course a before and after hair loss, but it was far from being my only issue. First, my personality was far from being ideal to deal with an unstable life (like losing my identity in my late teens): very neurotic (quite sensitive to negative emotions), open-minded (which means I could imagine the worst scenarios for my future), extremely orderly (prone to OCD, doesn't mix well with hair loss) and very introverted (just become more outgoing!) as the icing on the cake.

Like you, I blame myself for some stupid personal choices, like destroying my value system in my early teens and becoming an atheist, and then being exposed to postmodernism at university, which intertwined with my aggressive hair loss sent me straight to hell.

I thought I had mental problems but that was wrong, I had life problems, all fixable to an extent if not entirely. Now don't get me wrong, some people suffer depression because they suffer from some kind of autoimmune disease of as you say their brain is faulty in some way. In those cases, medication can help tremendously, but before going there, you should assess whether you're living a healthy life, which usually means:

- You eat and sleep properly (you have a schedule, you wake up every day at the same time, you eat a high-protein breakfast)
- You exercise (preferably lift weights so good on you for doing that)
- You have close friends that want the best for you, an active social life (it can be at work, in a religious community, a political party, etc. To cite personal exemples)
- You have an intimate partner: crucial to regulate yourself, and keep each other in check actually, plus you need a family (unless you're exceptional in some way and children would interfere with that)
- You have a job in which you are valued, with colleagues and bosses who want the best for you
- You have a strong value system and a good sense of good and evil: this was the last step in my recovery, take what suits you best: Sam Harris' moral landscape, Christianity, Buddhism, anything but relativistic aimlessness, I don't think people who are prone to depression can have the luxury to float aimlessly.
- Get into what you find deeply engaging and meaningful, find out what you hobbies are
- Just for us hair loss sufferers: do everything realistically implementable to keep at least decent head of hair

Once you have all that into place, you'll be able to deal to deal with the tragedies of this world and malevolence of some (rare) people much more efficiently. And that's also key, and goes without saying: cut the toxic people out of your life.

Implementing the above is how I went from being a nihilistic walking pharmacy riddled with deep depression, and anxiety to a somewhat stable and well-rounded individual. I guess I'm downplaying the profoundity of the change I've experienced here, since it still seems like a miracle to me and people who have followed my journey from hell to heaven on earth.

That said, even when you get to where I am, you have to keep in mind that you never truly "make it", as there is always a snake, even in the Garden of Eden. The problem of problems never goes away, and in the face of that, you can't ever stop making yourself stronger and facing new challenges, preferably voluntarily. I still have my own snakes to battle every now and then, like at my workplace at the moment. And it's in those moments that everything I've managed to build so far is truly tested.

It's quite scary to think that my not so distant messy self would have been crushed by some of the difficulties I'm facing right now. You realize that to make it in this life, all of us have to give it our all, and that nothing less will do, because the flood is always coming, and when it does, you better have a solid ark ready (that's the last Christian metaphor I promise :p).

Anyway, I hope I didn't end up talking too much about myself, I guess I needed my own rant :p. All this to say that it's possible to save yourself from the mess you're in and that it's very possible that your brain is not broken. Of course from where you'll be starting, it's all about tiny baby steps, make a plan but do not crush yourself with it, start small in the areas I've mentioned. I wish you the best and I really hope that you'll manage to better your situation.

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