Wintermuteblue 2007-10-15 11:11:16
i’ve dealt with depression my whole life, though i’ve only been
‘officially’ diagnosed since ’96. maybe it’s because i’m getting
older or maybe it’s because i’m on a jag but lately i’ve been
wondering about what has changed since i went on meds.
i ran the gamut before the p-docs finally found something that worked.
from prozac at progressively higher dosages to serazone then paxil
and zoloft to, now, wellbutrin and prozac combined. i’m ‘better’–if
by ‘better’ we can define it as stopping the scarification and suicide
scares and feeling maybe a little more up the evolutionary scale than
pond scum–but there’s something that i’ve noticed that i hope is
simply just me being inordinately paranoid.
if it’s one thing i’ve always loved it was writing. creative fiction
was the route i wanted to take to fulfill whatever maslow decreed i
needed to have in order to self-actualise. for the better part of 26
years i worked my way up. sure i never published but i had these
spurts of energy and what i thought of as bursts of creativity that i
hoped, one day, would stop the rejection slips.
when i started taking the meds, though, everything mellowed out for a
while. years passed and although my symptoms ebbed and flowed with
the dosages and types of medications i was taking, the one thing that
remained constant in it all was this gnawing feeling that whatever
creativity i had was lost.
i can’t explain the feeling. i still write. lots, in fact. but i
matter what my meds have been.
maybe i’m looking at this wrong. maybe i never really had the kind of
creativity i thought i had and it was just manic delusion…but i’d
like to think that something was there, some spark that made it all
worthwhile, all those hours spent first on the typewriter and then on
this must sound awfully vain but you have to understand that i built
my whole life around intellectual persuits. that was the one venue i
was both allowed to enjoy by my parents and one in which i felt
comfortable. i’m naturally shy and extremely introverted–the
internet has been one of my very few outlets for person-to-person
expression and, even then, i can’t seem to get it right without
fumbling my words–so the one thing i knew i had was what i could put
down on ‘paper’ (or bytes, as it later evolved into).
i don’t want to think that the only thing that’s keeping me alive
right now–the meds–is also dampening the joy of living. but i sit
and wonder, going over my input, rereading my old works and my new and
find myself lacking.
am i being too melodramatic here? has anyone else found a ripple in
their creativity, whether it be writing, painting, poetry or any such
Dakitty 2007-10-16 03:23:11
Mood stabilizers take the edge of the feelings. In my case, creativity comes
Good feelings, bad feelings, happy feelings, sad feelings.
No feelings, no creativity… at least in my case.
Dakitty 2007-10-20 16:26:12
Maybe the spikes in the moods were what kept the creativity flowing?
I stopped my meds all together, about 3-4 months ago, trying to get by with
just some therapy.
I got extremely Lucky to find a great therapist… One that thinks a bit
like me, that can understand AMD relate to what’s going through my head.
It’s not so much the therapy, but the understanding, and as I told him,
having someone see me the way I see myself, and not try to knock it down and
tell me it’s wrong and tell me that I should be something else, try to fit
elsewhere, but someone that is encouraging that there *is* a place for
people like me.
And at the same time, my creativity is just surging, after being suppressed
for a while. Sort of like coming alive again.
My moods swings, they’re still there, but they don’t mess with my head
nearly as much when I don’t fight them, and when I don’t put myself down for
having them. Some days, I’ll just be a crying mess, and then, it will pass.
Usually, after I cry it out, I go through a period where the creativity
surges, to a point of obsession.
Wintermuteblue 2007-10-23 06:54:04
i’ve long thought so but at the time, in ’96, i was completely falling
apart. i had a long, long manic phase and ended up staying awake for
nearly two days, typing away until my fingernails broke and tips
started to bleed. the self-mutilations had become too obvious
and…well, it was just a mess.
then my parents dropped the bomb on me and told me depression ran in
the family–on *both* sides–and everything for me fell into place.
my childhood, the insularity, social anxiety, introversion, the
extreme mood swings…everything. i self-referred and, i daresay, if
i hadn’t i would not be here right now.
*BUT*, i think i sacrificed something. i too began to think that the
spikes and swings were part of what made me, *me*…but it felt too
horrible to stop taking the meds. i tried several times and
immediately started up the self-mutilations again. the last time i
tried to stop was four years ago. i’m too scared to try again now
and, well, at 33, i feel like i’m too old to play roulette with my life again.
it’s tricky for me. my job is such that although they’re aware i’m on
meds if it becomes too much of an issue, i lose the job. since it’s
the only job i’ve ever had and i’m such a social wreck i don’t feel i
could start over again. i really don’t.
that’s the conundrum for me. i know i ‘need’ to take the meds–or so
it is thought–but i wonder aloud if all it really does is make it
easier for others (my superiors) to simply feel more comfortable about
working with me. oh sure, it helps to the extent that i no longer do
the same things i used to do but, in the end, it’s made me another
person, someone who, at times, i just don’t recognise anymore.
and that hurts. hurts a lot.
Wintermuteblue 2007-10-23 06:54:05
then it’s not uncommon? i mean, i’ve never been one to need
validation to feel something but in this case…i would feel a lot
better if i knew i wasn’t just generally losing whatever mental
faculties i have left to me…
please, if you can, tell me more.
Wintermuteblue 2007-11-09 19:01:22
someone once told me i was thirtysomething when i was 15 so
chronologically-speaking, no, i’m not ‘old’ but mentally i’ve been
living far too ahead of my time, burning the candle at both ends.
’twas not my intention to offend by suggesting that 33 is ‘old’ in a
pejorative sense. my apologies 🙁
i’m sorry 🙁 i know what it feels like to have made one step forward
only to have someone, ostensibly someone who ‘cares’ for you, push you
two steps back. lord knows why, but for some reason that hurts the
most, even when you *know* that, inside, they cannot validate who you
anyway, i’m babbling. what i mean to say is that you seem to be a
much stronger person than i am. i went back and read a few of your
posts and i was impressed by that determination and strength. don’t
forget what centres you–*you*. if he doesn’t have the patience or
the simple humanity to understand…well, you already seem to know what to do.
i have always feared telling people how i felt. i’d been used for so
long to hearing my parents simply reject me out of hand (or worse)and
then, in school and college, to simply be unable to express myself
verbally that i’ve long since all but given up socialising. the p-docs
say i’ve a type of social phobia and i suppose that’s as good enough
an explaination as any. i prefer the ‘bravery of being out of range’,
sitting here in my room, behind my monitor. it’s just…safer.
i don’t know what it’s like to make new friends. i imagine it’s very
stressful, at least in the beginning. i can count the number of
friends i’ve had on one and and the number of romances on the same
hand minus a few fingers. i’m simply maladept at social situations.
….so i do know what it’s like to feel alone. it’s painful. it’s
frightening. it’s a yawning abyss in the centre of your being because
you can’t talk to anyone, there’s no one to bounce thoughts, feelings,
fears and wants against. it’s just you and that mirror you don’t want
to look in. you go on through life, watch everyone else talk about
their days at the dance clubs and wonder…and wonder…
it’s funny but when i was 15 i thought i needed only one person to
live. i felt that way up until she was killed. i felt that way until
i made it through most of college. then, somewhere along the line, i
realised i was not an island unto myself. i could try to be but
humans are social beings, no matter how much i tried to deny it. the
problem was, by then in my mid twenties, i’d gathered so many bad
social habits, my fears had become so great, that i didn’t know what
else to do.
boy, i’m diverging *way* off. i’m so sorry 🙁
i once was in a relationship with someone i swear was borderline.
officially she was bipolar but symptomatically she more resembed a
borderline personality. it was a traumatic and rocky affair from
start to end. she would literally vacillate between hating me and
loving me in fifty seconds. she’d scream at me at the top of her
lungs, take swings at me, go after my canvases and disks (where i
saved the novellas i’ll never do anything with) and then, when it all
burnt out, she’d jump me and, well, let’s say the nite was pleasant
this went on for quite a while and it reinforced many, many negative
lessons i’d learned in life. but everytime i thought i couldn’t
handle it anymore, she’d pull me back and, having as little experience
as i’ve had with love, i would willingly allow it. no, not willingly,
*enthusiastically*. i swear to god i would have married her in a
heartbeat had the opportunity arisen, no matter how much it hurt me.
in the end, she left. nearly two years ago. just like that
:::snaps:::. no explaination, no apology. i felt (and feel) i
deserved it; i’d let her down in some way. i didn’t do enough
research, didn’t provide her with the loving that she needed or maybe
i was just so b***** ugly and insecure that she needed someone
anyway, the point is i know what it’s like to be in a relationship
that hurts and that you feel you cannot stop. i’m still dealing with
that relationship now, though i’ve since moved to the other side of
the country. i still wake up in tears because i have these lucid
dreams that we’re together and fine (thank you so-very-friggin’-much
ambien 🙁 ). it gets stuck in your mind like a groove that you
cannot smooth out. i hope, i pray that you’ll find your peace of mind
before it ever becomes anything remotely like that for you.
xanax? that’s a new one for me. i’ve had to use propanol–no
kidding, a heart medication–for years in order to prevent me from
passing out due to panic attacks whenever i did things like, oh, walk
in the mall or go into a group of people. i tried half a dozen
benzodiazapines but they, inevitably, lost their efficacy when my body
adjusted to them. tried buspar but that was completely ineffective.
propanol won’t take the edge off of panic but it does more or less
prevent that panic from knocking you off your toes–your heart rate
slows down to a crawl if you take enough 😉
madam, you have nothing to apologise for. honestly. i feel as if
i’ve done more socialising–even if it is behind the comfort of a
monitor–in these last few days than i have in the last two months, at
least. and for that you have my uttermost thanks.
oh i’m completely, utterly and totally without talent…and i’ve got a
fist full of rejection slips to prove it 😉
seriously, you are correct. the rut is what scares me the most. i
find that as the years go by it’s the rut that i fear now more than
anything else. the dynamism i had even as early as the turn of the
century is gone. i literally feel as if i have to do the same things
every day at the same time. it’s a little bit of OCD working its way
into my routine and it’s scary. in writing, you can’t do that–or at
least, i can’t. i can’t sit there and *force* myself to write. it’s
not like it used to be, pre-meds. then i could. it might not be
terrific but it wasn’t anything i couldn’t edit later on. now
it’s…well, i won’t say it’s a victim of ennui because i’m not at all
so refined as to have experienced that but there’s certainly a sense
of ‘well, why bother if you know it isn’t going to make a difference?’.
you just made my morning. i can do nothing more, madam, than simply
smile and bow in gratitude.
thank you so very much
Whiskers 2007-11-18 20:38:55
In alt.support.depression on Thursday 03 Jul 2003 3:01 am, Basil
I think it’s pretty common. I’ve had similar ‘blanks’ before – and been
through periods when I become almost obsessed with creativity – photography
(some actually not half bad, if I say so who shouldn’t), music (purely for
my own entertainment or solace), painting (rubbish), poetry (also rubbish).
The transition from one state to the other can be quick; the last time I
flipped from over-creatitivity to totally blocked, happened in the blink of
an eye, or almost. (I went out to cross North London on my pedal-cycle to
get a particular photograph at a particular time of day and season; I took
the picture … and by the time I got back home it was all ‘gone’; flat, no
interest in it at all, zip, nada, … .) That last flip, and my total
‘blockage’ since, was so deeply rooted that I hadn’t even acknowledged it
until early last week – after nearly three years. (I’ve been rather
fragile since Monday last week as a result).
Today I got out to the shopping centre, and got talking to someone trying to
drum up interest in a charity for people with cerebral palsy; he mentioned
that he had been badly depressed a few years ago, and unable to work as a
musician, but the skill and interest did return.
It sounds to me as though what you are experiencing is something similar;
the precise details and ‘extremity’ are obviously very variable but the
nature of the beast is basically the same as far as I can see.
So, what you describe, sounds real enough to me.
Creative people are well represented in ASD; take a look at
server hasn’t got it). Depression, Intelligence, and Creativity, seem to
be closely linked.
— ^^^^^^^^^^ Interested in Citroens?
Dakitty 2008-02-01 06:04:08
Don’t worry about it, I was razzing you 🙂
I’ve been called an “old soul” a few times.
awwwwww, you’re too nice 🙂
My motto, well one of them is “Don’t ever give up”… After I’m dead I’ll
have all the chance I want for giving up.
Peactice practice practice!
I understand all too well how that feels 🙁 (((((((((((((((((Basil))))))))))))))))
Exactly! We people are hard wired to need each other.
It’s okay 🙂
And no, you’re not diverging.
It’s very relevant, what you’re saying.
Ooouch 🙁 That’s very rough.
She needed to fix herself!
Yea, the gosts are still there 🙁 I’m sorry you had to go through all that.
I’m kind of new to xanax. I need it rarely, just on an occasional
’emergency’, maybe 5-6 times a year.
Well, come back often, it’s a pleasure chatting with you 🙂
Rejection slips don’t prove squat.
That’s proof you’re creative!
Maybe you’re just burned out with the type of writing you’re doing?
You’re welcome 🙂
oh, and don’t call me madam :), I’m not *that* nice or sophisticated 😉
I’m more like, what you see is what you get 🙂
Wintermuteblue 2008-02-08 16:45:52
i’ve been called that many times. my mother always felt i lived too
much in the future when i was younger. i just never *felt* like a kid
my age. i lived in a cerebral world because that’s all i really had.
i practically raised my brothers becaue our parents either weren’t
around or couldn’t be bothered. there was always something
*responsible* for me to do. playtime was for reading and not play.
my idea of fun was learning. i couldn’t go out, i couldn’t date–not
openly, at least–and heaven knows no one was able to come over to my
so i grew ‘old’ quickly. it was helpful in college–whilst others
were busy drinking their life away and ignoring their studies i was
drinking my life away and studying my heart out ;-).
but i missed a whole lot. an awful lot. i don’t think i had a
childhood, per se, just an apprenticeship in adult life.
i just describe what i see. the ‘niceness’ is already in you. the
strength and determination, you already had. i simply voiced that i’d
seen it in what you wrote. i found it inspiring. in fact, it was
your posts that brought me out of being a ‘lurker’ for the past few
years on and off.
sometimes it’s so much easier, though. and yet i can’t do it. i just
can’t. i want to give up, but i’m too stubborn, to b***** proud to
admit when i’m defeated.
one day. maybe. my track record is very, very poor and the more i
try, the worse i get. there’s a mother of all negative feedback loops
going on in the mess my life turned into.
and i find that the cruelest of all demands that have been placed on
human beings. we’re social animals but while it might be in my genes
to do so, my brain and body spaz out the second i try. i can’t speak
right, i can’t even think right. the phrase from the police’s ‘every
little thing she does is magic’ comes to mind: ‘but my silent fears
a’grip me, long before i reach the phone. long before my tongue has tripped me…’
it was. but i thought it was wonderful at the time. i still do.
tonite it seems like a golden age for me, when i know it’s not. i’ve
just…ideated. i’ve taken a few beautiful moments and glazed them
over. but all in all, i really thought it was worthwhile. i believed
in her and i thought she believed in me. i don’t know what i did
wrong. i just don’t.
really? maybe she was right. who am i to judge? i can tell you
this, though, i’ve come to not being surprised when romance doesn’t
work out for me or even friendship for that matter. it’s this
perpetual motion machine i know. who wants to be around someone who’s
always looking at their shoes, is afraid to look in your eyes and has
the self-esteem of an ant? i understand that and anticipate not doing
well…and when i don’t it just reinforces the whole feedback loop all
somewhere along the line i’ll have to learn to break it but at this
age i’m becoming fairly sure that there’s a distinct possibility that won’t happen.
ghosts are all i have sometimes. the ghosts of my childhood friends,
whom parents wouldn’t let me be with so they drifted away. my fiancee
who died, and my three girlfriends who gave me up for hopeless. i
have a limited form of photographic memory and it’s relatively easy
for me to remember their voices, their smiles, the way they laughed or
cried, what they wore or said or did. unfortunately i can’t really
control these recollections. a lot of times i just flashes at me when
i come upon something i associate with this or that memory. this can
be benign at times–the memory of apple pie on a summer’s day–but
there are things i really don’t want to remember, ghosts i’d rather not see.
well, it proves that the submission editors feel there’s either no
market for what i write or what i write isn’t ‘good’ enough. there
has to be some kind of determinant along the way, some kind of
standard they place a submission against. i’ve just been found
lacking. i will keep trying. how could i not? it’s all i know.
someone with more cheek than i have once called me the ‘last
cavalier’. it’s an ingrained habit of mine, born of years of enforced
Wintermuteblue 2008-02-08 16:45:52
mine certainly is. i can’t stand to look at some of the stuff i wrote
as early as a year ago.
i have tried the wrote of making comparisons but i’ve a very limited
circle of people with which i would entrust an honest approach (read:
one person 😉 ). he tells me that though my writing has changed it
has matured, even as, however, the content has become darker. i find
this strange because, ostensibly, the meds should make one a bit more
even-keeled but…i guess i feel more free now to be expressive about
those things that bothered me.
Wintermuteblue 2008-02-09 17:31:23
oh yes. father was a marine and mother was always…gone. even when
she was there she wasn’t *there*. and when she *was* ‘there-there’ i
wished she weren’t, for various reasons i don’t feel comfortable
my brothers needed someone to be there for them. i just kinda grew
into the role. it felt natural to me, sort of like being a surrogate
father. i was there to protect them from dad’s anger and mom’s
depredations and i only partly succeeded. overall, though, there
really was no time for the ‘fun’ part of growing up. just an
ever-faster, constant, inexorable need–almost an obsession–to grow
up, to get out and leave with as much dignity as they left me and
still make certain my brothers were able enough to fend for
themselves. even then, at least with one, i failed in that.
but who else is there to take care of you when those you think you’d naturally trust–don’t?
feelings were dangerous for me. father had a *horrible* temper and
the slightest thing set him off. with mother it was transference.
she was in denial half the time about father’s rages and the rest of
the time she was busy trying to escape any way she could. she was
confused and twisted, often doing things or attempting to do things no
for me, growing up like that was a lesson in caution and negative
reinforcement. caution because i never knew what was safe and what
wasn’t. being told i couldn’t date and yet feeling like your average
teenager, wanting friends and yet being unable to take them to my
place for fear of what would happen. nothing was safe. nothing was
sacred. privacy was impossible. i found out later on my mother read
my diary and my father checked out all the people he knew i hung
around (which wasn’t many, perhaps four my entire teenage years).
it all comes crumbling down, though, when you grow up and move away.
what do you do when you’re half a person or less? you haven’t
developed normally, you’re so introverted you can’t speak to people
without having a heart attack or stuttering into incoherence.
relationships? how? who would want you? i tried and it worked. i
got lucky. i didn’t deserve her but by god i she was the best thing
that ever happened to me. i felt…*human*. understood. loved. in
spite of the mess that i was. she died. i could not–have not, i
guess–gotten over that.
i tired again…and, well, you already know what happened there.
relationships are so hard for me–even with people who are just
friends–because they can’t seem to find a common frame of reference
to centre ourselves on. and, besides, like i said, i’m not the most outgoing of souls…
i normally just got slapped. father really didn’t like crying.
mother didn’t seem to mind but her method of dealing with it was to be
too, too close. for me, i wished i could have had moments where i
felt it was safe to cry, safe to just let it all out, but there never
was. really, there isn’t, even now. every time i want to–like last
nite–i keep on pushing it down, swallowing it, stiffling it. it
doesn’t matter that no one’s around i still feel…ashamed.
every so often i manage to allow myself the luxury of it, but i always
feel guilty afterwards and spend the next few hours in self-dejection.
oh fumbling’s okay. i do it all the time 🙂
i think something very similar to that. i keep on feeling that, just
over the hill, there’s a break waiting to be had. if i just keep
moving, if i just phrase things differently, if i put a little more
effort or even if i simply talk to the right person at the right
i have to have some kind of hope, some kind of sense of self-worth,
even if it is forced and it feels brittle. i found that, after half a
dozen suicide attempts that i don’t have it in me to leave just yet,
no matter how much i might think i want to go. i might be miserable
going through life but it’s *my* life and i’ll try to make it better.
‘try’ is the operative word here. no guarantees on efficacy 😉
no, no, that’s not what i meant. no, i’m no pilate, sitting back and
refusing to make judgement in the hopes that someone else will take
the burden off of me. no, what i’m saying is that i have looked in
the mirror, reflected upon my life and who i am and i am honestly
wondering if perhaps she was right to leave, that i was found lacking
and not worthy of love. i can say with all due honesty that that is
distinctly possible, if not probable.
i cannot judge her motives because i don’t know them. she never
explained. but if they are what i surmise–that i simply wasn’t worth
it–then what i am saying is that i have no right to adjudge them
wrong *or* right. it was her choice. i regret. i will probably
regret for a long time, but i cannot knock her for it if even *i*
don’t think i’m worth the effort in the long haul, no matter how well-intentioned i am.
that’s what the book ‘i hate you, don’t leave me’ told me about
dealing with the type of personality i surmised she had. but it
seemed awfully harsh to me. i just couldn’t bear to see her cry or
break down when i tried to reinforce those borders of what was and was
not acceptible. in the end i kept thinking ‘what if the shoes were on
the other foot? what would you have felt if you were the one on the
receiving end?’ the science behind what the book recommended may have
been good but i wasn’t not strong enough to implement it. nor, on
consideration, am i sure i should have.
see, that’s the way it is with me. i argue with myself more often
than not and end up in total paralysis. i game a situation so much
that i end up talking myself out of even trying.
so much of socialisation, though, is determined when you’re young and
impressionable. learning *now* is like rewiring your brain. who are
your role-models? who teaches you what is the proper way of doing
what everyone else learned when they were in kindergarten?
i *am* too harsh on myself and i know it but i can’t help but thinking
that my clock is ticking quicker and quicker with each year. pretty
soon and i will simply determine that whatever chances i had were
lost. like that father in ‘cat’s in the cradle’ by harry chapin. you
don’t realise it until it sneaks up on you just what you should have
done years ago. and by then, of course, it’s too, too late.
and i’m still searching for that approach. i’m cautioned by two
things: 1) my propensity to get so involved in the research that i
lose sight of the goal (which happens a lot on the silliest of things
i need to find out about this or that detail so that i can portray it
accurately in my writing) and 2)my sterile intellectualism. book
knowledge is fine, i’m told, but it does me no good amonst living,
breathing human beings. i’ve yet to find a way to synthesise what
i’ve learned with what i’ve experienced.
oh and i’m naturally pessimistic and i’m sure that doesn’t help one iota’s worth.
whom else could it be? two in a relationship and i’m not foolish
enough to think i have all the answers so the most logical explanation
is that they felt, rightly or wrongly, that it wasn’t worth the
effort. it’s a judgement call. i feel, rightly or wrongly, that they
may have had something there and i’m trying to change that. trying
and failing but at least i think i’m learning something in the experience.
good lord i *did* wear out my copy of that. when my fiancee died and
i just fell completely apart, i was willing to try everything to cope.
i ended up taking a psychology course called ‘the psychology of
loss’. ‘how to survive the loss of a love’ was one of our textbooks.
a small little tome but i read it in a day and kept on reading it over
the years, even after college. finally it fell to pieces. i haven’t
yet managed to get another copy but i keep meaning to, if only to
relearn lessons i probably should have never forgot.
which will eventually be my saviour, perhaps. it’s probably with the
niche publishers that i will have a better chance of making my first
sale. certainly not the big publishing houses.
for years. four, in fact. the last two years i’ve simply gone for
medicine maintenance because i felt that, honestly, there really
wasn’t much they could tell me about myself that i didn’t know. psych
was my major and i’m a rather thorough introvert. i read and have
copies of many of the texts some of my shrinks had in their offices.
maybe that’s my arrogance talking but i felt that if i could learn for
myself, perhaps i might be able to privately deal with my problems
without the semi-public shame of enduring the give and take of
of course, i’ve had mixed results. the medications
are…satisfactory–but only just. i don’t want to play with the
regimen though because it’s the best that they’ve been able to get me
to. ‘never look a gift horse in the mouth’ and all that.
i’m not knocking therapy–heavens no!–i just felt that it had become
too personal, touched on too many things i really would’ve rather
forgotten and dwelt more on the past vice helping me deal with the
here and now. the past is gone. it’s dead, if not buried. i never
had any blacking out moments so i know very well what happened to me
in my formative years. talking about it seemed not to improve it, but
exacerbate my anguish. i just cuts against the grain of my
experiences, which tell me to repress, repress, repress.
of course, *that* doesn’t work entirely scot-free either but… it’s
a question of trade-offs. right now, i want more stability and less
chaotic nites of crying jags and despair. medicate me to the gills if
you have to but please god don’t make me constantly look back and rub
my nose in it 😉
thank you. thank you very much 🙂