Anyone here deal with mental illness?

pellinore

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My counselor has shown me a bit of a new coping skill. I've probably learned as much as I will ever learn. I can't get better.
So tomorrow I will tell my counselor that I can't continue.
Then I will put everything behind me. Next week I'll tell my doctors that I'm not in counseling anymore and that I don't plan to try again. They won't be happy but I'm not doing this the right way....so why bother.
 
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commiecorvus

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My counselor has shown me a bit of a new coping skill. I've probably learned as much as I will ever learn. I can't get better.
So tomorrow I will tell my counselor that I can't continue.
Then I will put everything behind me. Next week I'll tell my doctors that I'm not in counseling anymore and that I don't plan to try again. They won't be happy but I'm not doing this the right way....so why bother.

Find a new counselor.
This one just wasn't the right fit.
There will be one that works, I promise.
 

pellinore

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Well, it has been quite a week. My session with my counselor actually went well. There was a lot that we got accomplished and I do feel a lot better about how things went. There are many things that are still very confusing and I'm not very confident about some things. I don't know if "getting better" is something that will happen.

I've been on a medication called effexor for six weeks or so. I'm not feeling so despondent and having dark thoughts of harming myself. At the moment though I am incredibly emotional about all types of things.....I guess being emotional is better than some of the other ways that I have been feeling.

I see my PCP this afternoon. It will be a good thing for me. I last saw her three weeks ago and I was still having lots of dark thoughts.

On Tuesday I get to meet with my friend. It will be the first time in over a month since he told me that I need to be talking with people who are more skilled at dealing with how I am experiencing things right now. He said that the help that I need is beyond his area of knowledge. He was concerned because he thinks that since January my thoughts have been continuing to get darker....so he has said that I need to be talking to the people who are more able to help me than he can. I've missed him. When I meet with him I'm going to be able to update him on what has been happening....and then maybe he'll be more comfortable knowing that I'm trying do work on being better. I miss this friend and I can't continue to keep myself from talking to him.....but until he's confident that I'm moving in the right direction....well, I don't think that he'll let me talk with him. So, I hope that there's been enough progress for him to see so that I can have some contact with him.

There's so much happening and going on within me.....too much to have to deal with and handle....things are difficult and I continue to be messed up with my thoughts and feelings. Maybe touching base with my PCP will be a good thing.
 

PassinTime

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I've been on a medication called effexor for six weeks or so. I'm not feeling so despondent and having dark thoughts of harming myself
. I'm glad.

At the moment though I am incredibly emotional about all types of things.....I guess being emotional is better than some of the other ways that I have been feeling.
. I feel like that's a good thing. You need to work through the painful and uncomfortable feelings to get to the other side.

I'm pulling for you.
 

pellinore

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My appointment with my PCP went pretty well and was actually a normal length of an appointment time. I usually spend a lot of time with her up to an hour with her and today that wasn't true. I was pretty focused and was able to tell her things in a more organized manner than usual.
 
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This article explains extremely well how I’m feeling:



I’d like to point out that I am NOT a danger to myself or others. It’s just an uncomfortable topic and I can’t really talk about it with my inner circle.
 

can't touch this

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I'm so very attached to being alive that I'd be willing to make a pretty huge sacrifice to cheat death, like say I get to live for 5,000 years with permanent youth but I'm deaf and paralyzed from the waist down. Where do I sign.

I believe it was Old Scratch himself who best summed up how I feel about it, in the old Testament book of Job he notes "And all a man has, he will give for his life..." I feel that 100%
 

pellinore

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well, a lot has been going on since my last visit.....I met with my friend and discovered that the biggest issue I had about not being able to talk with him was a big misunderstanding on my part. I actually could have talked to him! Now that this issue was addressed I feel 100% better.....just knowing that my friend is available and that it is OK to talk with him has made me feel a great relief. While I may not call him, just the KNOWING I can is what has made all the difference in how I feel about him and how I feel about my day to day life.

I've never been a person who likes surprises, but I like being able to be prepared. My PCP has understood this from early on in my medical treatment and I have been OK knowing that she is available.....it brings me comfort to know that she's there. So, the same thing is true with my friend...and when I thought that I couldn't talk with him I was lost and had no option to turn to him for support...but now, that has changed and I'm much better. The month that I thought that I couldn't talk to him was horrible and left me feeling very vulnerable and out on my own....and considering how I've been feeling all of March it was awful not having any option to contact him.

I saw my psychiatrist on April 4 and got everything all cleared up. I'd gone back to taking my meds and was beginning to feel a small difference. We talked about how my previous appointment had gone (when I said that I was going to stop with the meds) and I said that I hadn't been in a very good place...he said that he knew that and he talked about his concerns and explained why he hadn't pushed me that day. He said that he was worried that if he'd pushed me that things would have gotten pretty bad and fast. He had his office people call me everyday to see how I was doing and when I told them I was back on my meds and that I'd be OK they stopped calling me. So, needless to say, when I saw my psychiatrist on April 4 he was very happy with everything. Anyway, I told him about how I've been very emotional about things, but that I was feeling a bit better, he increased my Effexor dose and I'll be seeing him in 4 weeks from now.

I've seen my counsellor a couple of times. I'm feeling better with her. Still working on trusting her, but it is coming along.
I have now noticed that my depression has eased up a bit. I'm almost hoping that my new-found feelings are real....I'm still skeptical, but I am willing to be open to the fact that there might be positive changes.
 
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Information I am currently reviewing, it's brought up a thought that I've mulled over countless times.

It's unpopular, I don't often speak of it because people are upset that how dare I think that. Go ahead and chew me out, but please don't get too vicious towards me.

They say the rate of kids with autism is increasing all the time. I've been dealing with the reality of a kid with autism for 23 years - 25 if you count the baby/toddler years where I knew something was wrong but doctors pooh poohed it. When she was 18 months old she was diagnosed with "global developmental delays" and entered into therapy. She had to fail to make meaningful progression for a year before a team got together (SLP, OT, psychologist, social worker, a couple of others I don't know the title) to review her case. The team also required a lot of supporting test results - Fragile X testing, acquired aphasia testing, hearing, psych eval, socio-cultural of the home - because the pervasive developmental disorders can only be diagnosed after ruling out other conditions. She was diagnosed with PDD-NOS. A doctor told me, don't remember which one, "You don't want her to have autism. Children with autism don't get better." Other parents I networked with said they had heard similar - one parent said that a doctor told her that autism was little better than a death sentence. My child that didn't initially qualify for autism barely made noise. She never looked anyone in the face, actively turned her face away constantly if someone kept moving in her field of vision. She didn't know how to play appropriately like healthy babies play with toys, she'd just line things up. She'd scream like crazy if you messed up the pattern, if you touched her, if you made anything in her world change.

Well medical opinion shifted over the years and before the DSM changed the criteria, doctors re-evaluated the criteria and she got the formal diagnosis of autism. Along those same years the rates for autism went up. To me duh, if the moderate and mild cases are now being diagnosed according to the criteria with recognition that improvement is possible, instead of doctors turning into pretzels to find reason to disallow enough to fall one short and say PDD-NOS instead of a "won't get better" diagnosis, of course the rates are going to go up.

But the rates are getting even higher. But here's the thing. Kids are not even recognized as having a problem until 2nd, 3rd, 4th grade, a lot have diagnosis delayed until middle school. Seriously? No one could see a problem until the kid is almost a teenager? I hear that regular pediatricians are diagnosing from a checklist. Not one year and then a team gets together, a simple checklist by the family doctor. Out and about, so many parents have said their kid has autism and if so the kid is very, very high functioning, maybe a little social immaturity. These same parents, you talk about treatment, oh the school is handling everything, the school isn't doing any pullout speech or occupational therapy, they just get some classroom supports, that is all the autistic child is getting and is thriving with this almost nothing treatment.

I wonder if we've hit the point where normal kids are being pathologized, and the "rates" are actually false because normal kids are getting pulled into the net. MIT apparently has a class teaching basic social skills because a lot of very intelligent people have shitty social skills, but they are neurotypical people with medically fine shitty social skills. So it could be that a lot of healthy kids with bad or immature social skills are getting a label slapped on them instead of remembering that people aren't cookie cutters. Maybe there's a money reason to make the rate as high as possible. It's just, when I take a trip down memory lane, when I pull out all the childhood assessments, I remember how bad she was, I remember how other children with autism and PDD-NOS diagnoses were very similar or even more impaired than her. I do see kids today where it's clear as day that something is wrong, and hearing "autism" is not a surprise. But so many people are saying it, but it's so mild that the diagnosis was made when the child was older and there's little treatment being given. Do they even really have autism? Do they really have a disorder that by its very definition impairs most areas of development because the brain is physically not working right? Or are they simply normal kids who have strengths and weaknesses and could certainly use a little help in learning how to be a well rounded person but are not really any different than the kid who just isn't smart or the kid who is so skinny that weightlifting day in gym class is a nightmare?

Of course, how dare I (or any person) question the rate of diagnosis or the validity of diagnosing the kids who handled life fine until 6th grade? How dare I suggest that maybe the rates and criteria should be looked at critically to make sure they are being properly applied? Don't I know that it could lead to less kids being evaluated? Sorry, autism isn't a badge of honor, where you get to join an exclusive club. Well you do, but it's not a good exclusive.

Part 2, I hear adults with autism saying they don't have a disorder, all their problems are from other people and society having expectations and taking actions that set off the difficulties/impairments. I've heard that exact same argument...by the mentally ill who insist they are fine, it's the rest of society that is the problem, and then they go and blow up their lives, their families' lives, perfect strangers who cross paths, because refusal of treatment leads to symptoms flare-ups and disordered thinking and there's no brake on the train. I asked my daughter about that once, about the "we don't have a disorder, just a different way of thinking", and we covered all her current issues and how much difficulty they caused, and she agreed that yeah, it rises to the level of a disorder.

Again, please, attack the subject, not me personally.
 

commiecorvus

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My brothers wife refused to have his son diagnosed despite constant problems at school because she "didn't want him to be labelled".
He had a terrible time in school and was beat up on a regular basis because he has no filter.
He was the one who finally went in and got the diagnoses.
It would have been called Asperger's but what with the discovery that the 'good' doctor wasn't such a great guy after all they have blended it into the spectrum.
Which is part of the reason it looks like there are more cases as well.

We have clients who come in all the time with records that have the doctors not indicating a diagnoses one way or the other until they hit high school.
The counselors say there are two reasons for this, one cynical and the other giving the doctor the benefit of a doubt.
It is possible the doctor didn't want to do what my brothers ex said and slap a label on a kid early on.
Give them a chance to develop and deal with the world in their own way without being told they have a 'thing'.
On the other hand in most cases unless the situation is pretty severe there isn't anything a doctor can prescribe or provide for the autism in young kids.
In teens and adults it becomes a medical code that they can use to justify charges.
See what I mean about cynical?

I help people with autism find work and I have to agree with you that our culture has more problems than they do.
There are a lot of jobs people with autism can do but it often requires some job carving.
Job carving is when you look at certain aspects of the job, decide what are the really important parts of it, and figure out how the client will best be able to accomplish those.
Some people aren't meant to multitask but are amazing at stocking 100% accurately.
In Israel they have a unit in the military for people with autism, doing just this same sort of thing.
Carving out jobs that work best for them.
 
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There is a LOT that a doctor can prescribe for a young child. Treating a young child is far better than waiting for school age and then starting. ABA, speech therapy for receptive and expressive and non-verbal communication, occupational therapy for fine motor skills and sensory under-stimulus and over-stimulus, psychologist/LCSW for role-play of social situations, consult with a psychiatrist to rule out other disorders, developmental pediatrician to keep an eye on the big picture and adjust what everyone else is doing. Doing all this for a small child - early intervention - is going to lessen the severity and level of impairment when the kid hits adulthood when compared to waiting until the child is older to start this. There's a reason the DSM prior to the mid 90s said that most kids with a PDD wouldn't get better, it's because most doctors didn't try early in the child's life.

Also, schools are mandated to provide therapies and supports that will enable the child to learn educational material. Providing life skills and minimizing life impairments is not law, so outside medical intervention is a must if you don't want the child hurting inside for life when they hear a certain sound or needing to learn how to navigate extra-curricular social situations.

But it's just, when I see adults my daughter's age who say they have autism, it shows. Even if they say that it was mild enough that they found out as adults, it shows. Subtle, but there. Many tweens and teens, it shows. But there's tweens who don't seem impaired. You talk to them, good non-verbal skills and age appropriate social skills, smart and a bit arrogant but a nerd in the good sense. But the parents say they were identified the past year. Same with the late elementary crowd, a decent number you see it, a decent number appear to not really have impairments, just strong strengths and weak weaknesses that aren't overly impaired, that wouldn't rise to the level of significantly impairing daily life. (Compare healthy fear of dogs to phobia of dogs.) And all talk about the school supports, absolutely minimal stuff and say they aren't getting additional treatments outside of school, not even routine frequent doctor evaluations. Are these kids even disabled, or did someone just want them to get the extra test time and ear plugs and needed the IEP to mandate it?

It's almost like ADHD in a way. ADHD exists. But at some point some parents jumped on the "my kid must have this so give him special treatment" and some doctors didn't seem to think treating a non-existent disorder would harm and some teachers found out that in the early 20th century normal college students would take bennies to study better, and then the rates supposedly went up, until people started asking hard questions about the "mild cases".

So yeah, I see these kids that are a bit young for their age but nothing worrisome and I really want to think we've gone too far. Especially if they have a delayed diagnosis because there was no need for standard interventions because any weak areas just aren't weak enough to need medical intervention.

Jumping tracks, it was my understanding the loss of AS as the name of the disorder was world politics at the time Leo Kanner and Hans Asperger were doing their work. I heard that had they been able to share their data they likely would have been co-founders of a single disorder. The problem was that Kanner was in the US when he discovered autism in 1943 and Asperger was in Austria when he discovered AS in 1944. Not a lot of talk between those two countries at that time.
 

can't touch this

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Autism is absolutely a disorder and the people who are trying to meme it into a "personality type" are causing more harm than good to both themselves, if they have it, and others who do. I'm just thinking about how silly it would be if I tried to say that my own focus/concentration/math issues were just another thing about me like having freckles or not liking almonds so deal with it. Fucking ridiculous.

I mean, how bad do things actually have to get for something to be considered a disorder, according to these folks? What's the "snowflake to disorder" threshold? Does a guy or girl need to literally come out of the womb with no mouth, eyes, ears, face, limbs and a vestigial brain that lacks a cerebellum? I've met, or you could say dealt with, people with severe autism and Asperger's and it was a disaster every time, in such a way that you can tell that something is severely wrong. When I was younger I punched a kid in the face who I now suspect had it because I was sick of his terse, humorless attitude and he snarked one too many times. Thinking back I'm sure that kid had it a lot worse than some because his parents hated his guts and pawned him off on his grandma most of the week. They seem to be especially prone to morphing into actual psychopaths if they are mistreated and abused/abandoned by their parents, too. Yeeesh.
 
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Autism is definitely very real, don't get me wrong. It's just, sometimes I think the pendulum has swung too far. It needed to swing some, twenty years ago kids who were horribly impaired weren't getting the "label", the proper diagnosis, because doctors feared the at-the-time accepted prognosis of autism.

It's just the rates have gone up crazy high. The year my daughter was diagnosed, the rates were 1 person in 150. Today it's 1 person in 59. That is a hell of an increase. Is all of it legitimate? Or is the bulk of it better diagnostic testing but some of it not valid?

Edit: I just found an interesting statistic. World wide, the rate of autism is 1%. My math says that's 1 in 100, less than the US stat of 1 in 59.

And again, you talk to the parents, you ask about treatments, and so many parents of kids that don't really seem impaired say no outside therapy, the school is handling the entirety of treatment, and the kids don't have any pull-out services. Huh?

And it seems to be a phenomenon of mid-childhood. You don't see it among adults, if they have the diagnosis, stay around long enough you'll see the impairment. (Get them to open up, you'll hear their hate for their childhood therapies.) Young children, if parents say they have autism, it's because they are trying to explain why the child just did what they did, and it's pretty obvious that yeah it was a symptom. Elementary/middle school, a lot definitely have difficulties, but there's a fair number that don't seem to have difficulties and the parents aren't seeking any treatment. Things that make you say "hmm".

Autism is absolutely a disorder and the people who are trying to meme it into a "personality type" are causing more harm than good to both themselves, if they have it, and others who do. I'm just thinking about how silly it would be if I tried to say that my own focus/concentration/math issues were just another thing about me like having freckles or not liking almonds so deal with it. Fucking ridiculous.
I agree. And I totally disagree with the concept of "it's the core of our personality". I can understand that thinking, no one wants to think the seat of their consciousness is messed up since it means their entire perception of self and world is likely screwed up. But spitting into the wind, they are just making life harder for themselves and for others with the same disorder.

I mean, how bad do things actually have to get for something to be considered a disorder, according to these folks? What's the "snowflake to disorder" threshold? Does a guy or girl need to literally come out of the womb with no mouth, eyes, ears, face, limbs and a vestigial brain that lacks a cerebellum?
An occupational therapist that worked with my daughter had what seemed to me to be a good definition of "disorder". If the symptoms are bad enough that they negatively impact daily living or quality of life, it's a disorder. Short of that, no real impact, it's personality.
 
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can't touch this

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I get a really weird vibe from some of the parents (usually always the mothers) of autistic kids like they are their special pets or fashion accessories, and they'll tell complete strangers like the cashier who's bagging their groceries that "I'm buying this for my daughter, she has autism but she loves it!!!!!!!!!!!" and it sketches me out in a way that I can't quite explain. Bad behavior no matter how serious is dismissed with SHE!! HAS!! AUTISM!! as the child is stomping on the windpipe of another kid who swiped her crayons. It makes me think Munchausen by proxy or something similar. I once saw a woman in a Walmart literally screaming at a total stranger's kid for giggling at the noises that her autistic daughter was making (both kids were no older than 8). Does anyone else know what I'm talking about? It's bothered me for a while.
 
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I think part of that is because people are really judgmental, and you feel you have to explain that your child isn't abled like most children so judgment isn't passed.

I remember when my daughter was little, I had to get help from hospital administration, I had no way around it and there was no online options back then, and something about that room set off my daughter's sensory problems. I had to sit there with her screaming, since there was no way to calm her. It wasn't a temper tantrum, it was a reaction to sensory pain, just like how you would react if someone hammered a nail into your hand. Every set of eyes in there was just full of condemnation, every face registered disapproval. Then one woman asked loudly "Does she have autism?" and when I said yes the face of every person in there changed, I could see their sympathy.

Edit: When I left, the woman gave me a business card for a local autism group. I think she was so loud in order to make sure every person understood what was happening, that my daughter wasn't just being a brat.
 

band_rules16

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This may be slightly related to the autism thing (or not really), but I just need to say to not let mental health slide. At all.

I've been dealing with severe depression all school year and it's enough where I am not going to continue in my graduate program. I have been miserable and trying to complete requirements is a chore. I have a couple of unsupportive professors who don't accept depression as an excuse for late assignments or for assignments done incorrectly (in a rush). They don't believe me when I say my depression has been a major roadblock in getting things done this year. They don't know how difficult even getting out of bed in the morning can be, or how I've found little joy since I arrived here. Plus I've discovered this program isn't giving me what I want, and I was misled about what to expect.

I'm having to job hunt now and I'm panicking over that (student loans, expenses, etc.) but it was a relieving feeling when I decided I was done. I've spoken with a counselor on campus and with a prof who was the only one that supported me all year. I need go find me again and it's not going to happen here. I discovered I don't do anything I enjoy anymore, especially with my hobbies. I want to get back to the person who loves being outdoors, exploring, taking pictures, and spending time with her animals.

Please, please, PLEASE don't brush it aside. Don't let the "just get over it" phrase be it for you. It's not something to "just get over". I needed to have listened to myself sooner when I realized how unhappy I was. Don't let someone say your mental health isn't important. It is.
 

pellinore

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I'm now taking a stronger dose of Effexor. I'm thinking that there are things that are improving, but I am continuing to have times when all I seem to feel is sadness. It seems like many things make me feel like crying and it is often hard to keep myself from crying.
I keep feel like I am having one thing after another being put in my way and I am becoming discouraged and I'm finding it difficult to believe that there will come a time when I become well.
 
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I'm struggling a bit right now. Mood's pretty extreme, too happy, too sad, too angry, too too. When I'm not siphoning good moods off of other people I'm pretty sad, pretty blue, I can't seem to find the follow through on anything that needs doing. It's just so hard to get up and do something. Complicated stuff seems overwhelming. Work is okay for now, when I'm out and have someone else providing structure it's okay, but self structure is completely gone. Not just chores and stuff, I can't even open an email a friend sent me to read the background on an RPG character for a DnD game he's starting.
 

commiecorvus

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It's spring in Alaska which means a lot more light (average amount of light for everybody else) so my mood has stabilized.
But my sleep is for shit, which is only going to get worse because the light is going to get longer.

Summer is a manic time even for folks who are neurotypical.
 
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