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I Am Confused and Depressed

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From India: I am a 20 year old male. I have been halla confused and depressed since an year or two . There a many issues harboring my mind. Firstly, since few months I get this weird feeling or say desire of being a woman. I think I am hetrosexual most definitely. this has been lurking within me since some months.It feels to be much better. It might be sexual frustration but I don’t know. I was also nearly sexually molest when young ,by a man, at around 14.

since few months I have noticed I am very egotistical and anything said to me makes me fill with rage if it’s not what I want to do or any similar situation. I too am shy and I just can’t stand people whom I know ( I am fineĀ  starngers even in a large group sometimes, wierdly). I have been having difficulty in functioning around relatives and I am quite deep into substance abuse. What should I do? Please do help me

I Am Confused and Depressed

Answered by on -

A.

I’m very glad you wrote. It must feel terrible to be so confused and depressed. I’m going to tell you what I’m sure you already know. You cannot sort out your identity or deal with your anxiety and depression without also addressing your substance abuse. Both issues have to be dealt with at the same time. One of my guesses is that you abuse drugs or alcohol to deaden your pain. But when you get even a bit sober, your problems are still there.

People with both substance abuse and mental health issues often have family problems. I suspect that your difficulty with relatives is born of shame about your substance abuse (and maybe other things as well). Maybe you protect yourself from judgment by avoiding them and being angry. Strangers (by definition, people who don’t know you) may seem safer company. You can present yourself in any way you want with a stranger, but you can’t fool a relative for long.

I don’t have enough information to comment much on your feelings that you might prefer to be a woman, especially since you stated that you were sexually abused as a young teen. It’s possible that your concerns about your sexual identity are a reaction to the abuse. It’s also possible that you are coming to terms with the feeling that your gender assignment at birth wasn’t accurate. You would find it helpful to confer with an expert on sexual identity to help you sort this out.

A dual diagnosis (substance abuse and mental health issues) tends to be difficult to manage and to have a great potential for relapse. That’s why you need to deal with both at once. Such an integrated treatment usually includes some behavioral therapy (like Cognitive Behavioral Therapy or Dialectical Behavior Therapy) to help you learn new ways to cope with distress, medication if needed for your anxiety and depression, psycho-education to give you new understanding of your problems, as well as relapse prevention strategies. Some programs also include classes in mindfulness meditation as a tool for calming yourself. Close collaboration of your helpers makes success more likely.

I hope you can find a program in your country that can provide you with the guidance and support you need. If not, consider exploring some of the online support and recovery programs for dual diagnosis.

I wish you well.

Dr. Marie

I Am Confused and Depressed

Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

Dr. Marie is licensed as both a psychologist and marriage and family counselor. She specializes in couples and family therapy and parent education. Follow her on Facebook or Twitter.

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2019). I Am Confused and Depressed. Psych Central. Retrieved on November 20, 2019, from https://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2019/07/04/i-am-confused-and-depressed/
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 3 Jul 2019 (Originally: 4 Jul 2019)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 3 Jul 2019
Published on Psych Central.com. All rights reserved.