MDD Is Worsening. What Else Can I Try?
From the U.S.: I’ve been in therapy and taken many different medications for close to 30 years. In the last 8-9 months my MDD has become medication resistant and is worse than I ever thought possible. I’ve tried ECT (3 treatments) and it did not help at all. I’m doing a litany of self-help wellness things that have taken over my entire life and I’m just getting worse. I take Effexor, Adderal & Clonapin. I do yoga, meditate daily, swim 2-3 times a week, see a therapist weekly, eat very nutritionally, get plenty of sleep but not too much,
I don’t work, and my life situation outside of this debilitating depression is very good. Happy marriage, great kids, generally financially stable, few good friends, mostly good relationships with family although there are a few estrangements that haunt me. My therapist did the Minnesota assessment on me and the high levels included major depression, anxiety and PTSD. I had a very unhappy and unstable childhood.
I am at the point now where I feel like I am a tremendous burden on my family and have completely isolated myself within my own home. I feel like a completely different person than I was before and I miss myself and my old life. What else can I do?
I cannot live like this any longer. Nothing is working and I feel very alone even though my family is very supportive. Right now i’m just pushing them away for their own good. I’m so sick of myself and of being me. I attempted suicide via OD in 2014 but it was a compulsive act at the time based on a situation. I have the means to do it again, successfully this time, but I genuinely don’t want to do it.
I simply don’t know what to do and cannot plan anything more than 5 minutes in advance because I’m completely unmotivated. I spend most of my day reading. I don’t cook or clean and I have a very enviable life all things considered. But if this is what I have to look forward to for 20 more years, I’m just ready to go right now. I’m exhausted and I’m just done.
A: I do sympathize. This is what an intractable depression looks like. You are doing everything you’ve been asked to do and nothing seems to help. You say you are sick of being you. But it sounds like your family isn’t. They love and support you. To me, that means that there is much more to you than your depression. I’m very glad for their sake and yours that you are resisting the thoughts of suicide.
If your therapist is truly out of ideas, it may be time for the two of you to call in another therapist as a “consultant”. Sometimes new eyes on a situation can make a huge difference.
This is not to be understood as a negative comment on your therapist. He or she may be excellent. But each of us therapists has our own training and has our own unique history of experience with many different people and situations. A new therapist just might have had experience with a former client that would be helpful to you. Ask your therapist to consider inviting a colleague or two to some of your sessions.
I also suggest that you join a forum here at PsychCentral. People from all over the world offer help and support to each other. Click on the “find help” tab on the homepage. Then click on “forums and support groups”.
I wish you well.
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2017). MDD Is Worsening. What Else Can I Try?. Psych Central. Retrieved on March 22, 2018, from https://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2017/09/10/mdd-is-worsening-what-else-can-i-try/