I am not a trained professional in Psychology or Mental health. My intention to share my story is merely to raise awareness among people and the stigma attached to it. Please consult a professional if you go through depression, anxiety, or any mental illness.
Visit to a Psychiatrist
In most of the cases, when a person suffering with depression, anxiety or a mental disorder for the first time, tend to overreact to the symptoms, getting extremely horrified of their abnormal state , jumping on conclusions if they have really gone mad or insane.
Only to realize later , after hearing from their doctor that it comes under certain mental disorder, accompanied with depression & anxiety or depression itself being the primary illness. As it’s normal to feel like this when you are experiencing it’s symptoms.
Relating this opinion to my case , when I had to take that shivering call to visit a psychiatrist, I literally visualised one of those disturbing scenes from the movies when a maniac is being restrained & dragged to the hospital, in publics eyes , an unbearably humiliating situation one can imagine. But in reality, nothing of that was even close to my exaggerated imagination .
May be, being victim of my own thoughts & imaginations as I had never experienced mental illness before in my life or was not aware of it’s unusual symptoms which made me think to an extent that , I would be treated the same way all patients are treated in the Mental hospital. All these stupid assumptions our mind make is also one of the reasons we are freaked out to take an appointment to a doctor.
But think of it this way , if you get yourself treated when the symptoms are active & at its peak ,you will be so thankful & wise enough to visit the doctor at the right time & find ways to overcome your condition through combination of medicines & mind therapies. Additionally accompanied with 50% of your awareness & preparedness of dealing with your illness, this time, mindfully. Why wait & visualize urself getting to the last stage of insanity ,losing your control, in a bargain to appear normal to everyone, trying to heal yourself on your own , when you can overcome this condition if treated at the right time. Rather then making it socially awkward mess of display when the condition is aggravated.
When I visited the psychiatrist for the first time , he was unbelievably welcoming , calm & ready to listen whatever I was going to throw at him with so much of patience & mindfulness. Where as I expected him to react shockingly when I would break my silence. I was so wrong.
He patiently listened to all my symptoms & patterns , giving a smile occasionally, only making me comfortable further, to reveal all that I have been hesitating to share. Well of course that must be their strategy, and I think it really works.
He asked me about my family history ,if I had any suicidal thoughts to harm myself or others. After understanding the chain of my patterns & symptoms he gave a name to my condition ‘ OCD’ followed by Postnatal Depression.
I was then prescribed appropriate meds, under observation. He assured me positively that I will be fine soon. And there was no need to worry, as it’s a common illness & majority of mothers go through it post-pregnancy.
His assurance solved half of my problems. In my case I would say, the existing pre- disposed mute OCD inside my brain, is what triggered depression in the first scenario, which was also partially because of post-delivery hormonal- imbalance in the second scenario, I believe.
Yes, it’s a bitter truth that I never enjoyed the first feelings of being newly married or being a mother for the first time. But I certainly enjoyed everything that happened in middle & after that, because I dared to take a call to heal myself with the help of the professional. And now I know how to live with depression at my side.
As I said earlier, each and every depression story is different. What worked for me may not work for you. As the intensity of what we must have been through , is different , with underlying various mental disorders , with different genetic patterns in everyone.
But what we all have is, a common ground to share our stories with each other. Only then, we will be able to relate each other so closely and come to terms with accepting our reality positively without judging ourselves Making the words ‘ depression ‘ ‘ Anxiety’ & Mental illness sound normal to everyone like any other physical disease.