Is It “Normal” to Feel This Way?

By Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW

Q. Is it “normal” to feel this way? I’m currently on medication and therapy for depression; I have not done well with anti-depressants, so my psychiatrist prescribes me seroquel; it’s been about 2-3 years now. I had a really bad episode about 8 months ago. I was going to therapy weekly at that time; my counselor asked me if I wanted to go twice a week, but that would have been too much for me. But things became better, but only for a couple of months after that bad episode.

The bad thing is that I think I’m getting close to having either a psychotic or manic episode – something I had 9 months after I had been first diagnosed w/depression – I was stopped about at least 6 times for speeding and racing, but as soon as I moved back home, I kind of stopped; but now I feel it’s come back.

It is spring break now, and b/c I’ve this huge anxiety I felt like taking this long travel and do something reckless, but I decided to stay at home. Still, I know if I don’t take my meds I don’t sleep, but lately I’ve going out at night and I run red lights, go way over the speed limit (55-60 mph in a 30 mph zone) and if on the highway close to a 100 (unfortunately, my car is not so fast). I kinda wish I could crash or something similar.

I thought about it, and I just realized that I spent $10k in who knows what about 2 years ago, the only proof I’ve is my credit card bills.

I know that there is pretty sick people who wish they had more time to spend w/their loved ones, but I just wish I could trade in such time w/such a person.

I just don’t really know what to do; I’ve not told my counselor this out of fear she will get upset at me for not telling her this, and I’ve not told this either to my psychiatrist, I just don’t know how; and I kinda wonder if I really should. The thought of suicide often crosses my mind, but I wouldn’t want to leave it for my death certificate to say suicide, so I think harder in an attempt to not leave such impression.

I don’t get it; my work is going really well, my family life (my parent’s divorce and my sister’s problem) is kind of settling down; with the exception of this last couple of days, I am able to pay all bills, as just lately I’ve been spending more than I usually do,but I just don’t know why this is happening. I don’t even know how to tell this, can yo please give me some advice? Thank you.

A. It seems that you’re having an increase in your symptoms. It’s spring break. You’re increasingly more anxious. You’re struggling to not travel or leave your surroundings. You are out at night running red lights and speeding. This not only puts your life in danger but you are endangering the lives of innocent people traveling on those roads. You just realized that you’ve spent a large sum of money but have no idea what you’ve purchased. In some areas of your life, you’ve lost total control. You also stated that you’re considering suicide. As you suspect, the aforesaid symptoms indicate that you might be in the midst of a psychotic or manic episode.

There is only one way to handle this serious situation. Get help now. It is imperative that you inform your counselor and your psychiatrist about your thoughts and behavior. Please do not be frightened to tell them. If you alert them about your symptoms they may be able stop a full-fledged psychotic or manic episode from occurring but they can’t help if you don’t tell them what you’re experiencing. Call them, go in for an early session, write them a letter or send them an e-mail. Choose any way you wish to relay this important information to them immediately. Tell them exactly what you wrote in this letter. Print out the letter if it makes it any easier to inform them about how you’re feeling.

Your symptoms will probably not improve on their own. They’re likely to become worse. You’re already feeling out of control. It’s not “normal” to feel the way you’re feeling. It could be that with a slight medication change these symptoms would diminish and a psychotic or manic episode could be averted.

Please consider informing your treating mental health professionals about this matter as soon as possible. It’s their job to assist you but they can’t help if they don’t know you’re suffering. Please get help now.

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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 23 Mar 2009

APA Reference
Randle, K. (2009). Is It “Normal” to Feel This Way?. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 29, 2014, from http://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2009/03/23/is-it-normal-to-feel-this-way/

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