Sadness vs. Numbness

Mental health

Today’s post is particularly similar to the horrendous weather we’ve been having recently – it’s miserable.

Despite being a little dampener to add to the rain, it is something that I really need to address.

If you have experienced the very lowest of depression, you will know it’s a feeling that you probably wouldn’t wish on your worst enemy. Let me tell you it is very different to placing someones head on dartboard and aiming at their head.

My lowest point is a moment in my life that will stay with me forever. Not because I can look back on it and see how far I have come, or use it to do wonderful things for other people like myself, but because it haunts me.

To the outside eye (or ear in this case) it probably seems as though there is nothing overly poignant in my memory. Shouldn’t my worst be self harming or contemplating actually jumping off that bridge? Nope. I was in the comfort of my own home. I remember sitting in my brother’s room, looking at the corner between the ceiling and the wall, hysterically crying and saying to myself : ‘I either run away or kill myself. If I run away, where would I go? I would probably run out of money, police would be searching for me all over. They would probably find me and bring me right back here.’ That was when I decided that my only option to get me out of this hell was death itself.

Fast forward to about 1 year later, and remarkably, I am still going. This is around the time it was finally concluded that I needed serious help, which brings us to the time I was prescribed antidepressants. First 20mg – useless. Then 40mg – took the edge off a little, but there was still something missing. Lastly, 60mg – everything went missing.

I have taken 60mg of Fluoxetine (Prozac) for around 2 years now. This is the highest dose of this particular antidepressant that you can get. Initially, I took medication and went to CBT – cognitive behavioural therapy. After a long time of doing both and a lot of money later, I decided therapy wasn’t for me and I would just let the medication do its thing – an unpopular opinion amongst many – yes I should probably try harder to fix the route of the problem and stop relying on medication that could just harm me in the long run etc etc…

Finally, to my point. Sadness vs. numbness? It’s a situation I never imagined myself being in. At my worst point, I imagined being sad for the rest of my life. Then when I started taking medication, I imagined all my bad feelings would go away. Wrong. In actual fact, all of my feelings have gone away.

I know this is what antidepressants do, they balance the neurotransmitter chemicals in your brain that affect emotions blah blah blah. But what they don’t tell you is that you are really trading in those God awful emotions for feeling like an emotionless zombie. In retrospect this is what I am now – particularly in the midst of waking up – I am not a morning person, no amount of medication will change that. Anyway, tablets make it far easier to sleep and you can walk past a train track without thinking of hopping on it which in my eyes, is a winner. But there are also symptoms that come from antidepressants. Altogether, these are called ‘Emotional Blunting’… there’s a term for everything, really, us depressives will never win…

The symptoms of Emotional Blunting go a little like this:

  • Being less able to cry in a situation where it seems you should – even if you want to. This feels a little bit like needing to sneeze but not being able to.
  • Feeling little to no empathy – those charity adverts with the children are my worst nightmare.
  • Not being able to belly laugh at the best of times – the feeling I miss the most.
  • Generally feeling like half of yourself is missing. You are the tiniest one of all those Russian dolls that go inside each other, you are desperate to get out but you are just too small to remove the layers.

 

So my question really is, is it better to feel totally sad, or to feel nothing at all?

I miss the days where I could laugh out loud, genuinely, and feel the joy of your stomach aching from the giggles. I miss being able to have a good cry with my Mum about missing my Grandma – reminiscing over the good days. But then again, I would rather never smile again than go back to that day in my brother’s bedroom.

For anybody that knows me, I hope this gives you a little more of an insight into my teeny tiny pea brain. For anyone that doesn’t, or has been going through the same thing wondering what the heck is wrong with them, please know you are not alone.

 

Hugs and wishes,

Abbie x

 

 

 

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