part 2: getting help

honeymoon picture 
my journey to overcome depression is a long process.

my emotions are in continual waves between deep sorrow and ultimate happiness.

though the feelings from the previous post still rear it’s ugly head, i feel like i’m in a much much better place than when i originally wrote it

mainly because i feel like i have learned the tools to overcome my feelings rather than let them consume me

in May, i went down to BYU’s counseling center and set up an appointment to start meeting with a therapist. the day before i made my appointment i told adam:

“i know my life is good but i can’t feel it. i just can’t be happy. i don’t know how anymore. i feel completely at a loss. i don’t think i can do it on my own anymore. i think i need help to teach me how to be happy again.”

adam was completely supportive. he told me he had been thinking for some time that i should talk to someone else but didn’t know how to approach me since i was so sensitive to any kind of tips/help/advice.

i needed to figure it out on my own  even though i had to go through heck to do it.

but at the same time i don’t regret what i had to go through because i feel like i am on a very positive path to true happiness. and i’m learning tools that i can use throughout my life even when i leave Provo and move on to bigger, better, more stressful and harder things.

i have now been going to see a therapist for 3 months. though i’ve had to switch therapists, i found that each one was able to give a different and very helpful perspective to my struggles. 

on my very first day of counseling, i left feeling lifted from my huge burden of sorrow, grief and despair. it was an incredible feeling, one that i felt like i had missed out on for too long.  it’s not that i was completely “cured” after my first time going. i just felt the difference right away that therapy was a really helpful resource to help me deal with my depression

it felt amazing to talk to someone that truly understood what i felt and didn’t judge me for feeling sad, lonely, overwhelmed, guilty, & worthless.

but instead he listened. and i mean really listened as i poured out my heart of months and years worth of sadness.

adam is of course always there to listen to me and help me, but it’s different when you have someone there without being totally emotionally involved and able to listen and understand objectively.

and that is something i cannot stress enough about the blessing of therapy.

i used to be ashamed that i was “crazy enough to need a shrink.” but now i know the amazing tool it really is and i wish i had utilized it earlier.

i am so grateful i got the courage and support to make that first appointment. i am no longer ashamed but just full of gratitude that i was guided to understand that i needed help and to reach out to get it.

 

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as i start to compile my thoughts about what i have learned about depression and what i am doing to overcome it, i wanted to let you know that i’m always open to questions.
please let me know if there is anything you would like me to talk about.

i want to be very open about my experience because i know there are many people {especially women} who are going through the same things. and i would like to do whatever i can to help and answer any questions anyone might have.

13 comments:

GingerPeachT said...

I've been going to counseling since march and it has been so good for me!! Just like you said, how you felt weightless after you go. I feel that way still after I go. I have been dealing with anxiety more than depression. But they are both equally hard and draining.
Husbands are great, but at the same time we can't always depend on them to help us get thru. I'm learning that right now. To depend less on my hubby and more on God. Which is so hard!! My hubby can say calming words to me and rub my arm when I feel anxious. Lol but it's always a process. Just like living our Christian walk, that is never complete.
I appreciate your honesty with this blog. Makes me want to share more on mine. :-)

Beth said...

I think as Latter-day Saints we put a lot of pressure on ourselves to be perfect, but we need to remember that it is because we are imperfect that Heavenly Father sent His Son for us -- and because He loves us, even with those imperfections. Thanks for sharing these last two posts. It really is nice, especially here in "perfect" little Provo, to know that there are others who struggle sometimes too!

Jessica Sebastian said...

Thanks for doing this, Megan!

Alexis Kaye said...

I completely agree! I have been going to therapy for 3 months too! It's been one of the best decisions i've ever made. It's not for the same reason, but it's still helped so incrediby much. I feel like I'm finally starting to see the person I want to be :) I'm so happy for you to be making progress! Taking care of yourself is so important!

Autumn said...

That first step into the counselor's office was hard, but worth it for me.

However, I'll be honest...I didn't feel relief after my first visit. It was several days later, but at least the relief came.

Ciao Mama's said...

Keep up the good work. I went to a therapist for my anxiety and it worked and I am doing so much better. Take care of yourself. New follower.

Melody Holmes said...

Very touching and inspirational!

The Dunns said...

Thank you for being open with your mental health. I know so many of us struggle and hold it inside and the success stories are never shared. I hope that your story will inspire others to better their own lives :). Being open is a sign of humility, and not only helps us to progress more quickly but can inspire others to better their own lives. Love you girl!

Anonymous said...

Hi Megan,

I have been reading your blog for a while now and I love it. These posts have really been helpful to me and I thank you for them. I know this is a personal question so there is no need to answer but on top of going to therapy, do you take a depression prescription as well? I have been going to a therapist for a couple months now and he has suggested I take an anti-depressant but I'm not sure what to do. Any advice?

Karen

Megs said...

Hey Karen!

I hope you see this since you don't have an email listed... But I really want to answer your question! I've gone to a couple of different therapists (because of scheduling conflicts and things) and all of them have suggested to NOT put me on medication. The main reason being we (the therapist and I) both felt that it wasn't so much a biological problem that needed medication as it was that I needed to learn a new way to live and learn new tools to incorporate into my life. We didn't want to mask the problem with medication that we felt like I wasn't at the place that I needed. Although I do believe some people greatly benefit from it, we just both didn't feel right about it for me. I hope this makes sense and answers your question... And more importantly I hope you see this!! Maybe I'll write an actual post about it :)

Thanks for reading and I'm SO happy they have been helpful! That means a lot!

Megan

MacGirl said...

Hi. I just wanted to say thank you for this post, I've only just found it! I start counselling on Tuesday and I feel exactly the same way. I know that I should be happy and I put a happy front on but I don't feel happy. I'm nervous about it but I know at the same time that this is what I need and what my boyfriend needs me to do. Thank you!

MacGirl xx

www.macgirlsadventures.co.uk

Janae Pettit said...

When I got engaged to my now husband, Bob, I was struggling with undiagnosed PTSD and had been for most of my life, but had never gotten help for it. Bob wasn't sure how to approach me about it either, but one night I had quite the breakdown, so the following day he tenderly made suggestions and supported me in whatever ways I needed. I went into the BYU counseling center that day and started seeing a therapist. She was exactly the person I needed to get help from! It was definitely an uphill battle at first, with depression and emotional scarring surfacing frequently, but the healing came soon after. Not only that, but I finally began to see myself and the world accurately. That all began three years ago. Today, I'm finally myself. Not only that, but I love myself (which is a first for me!). I wish I'd understood just how beneficial therapy can be. I would have sought that kind of help so long ago! But I''m thankful I found it sooner than later. Thanks for sharing your story. It always reaffirms my own when I learn of someone else's success in overcoming something so consuming. <3

Amanda Schroeder said...

Sooo I just barely saw this because of your previous post linking to this. I actually have a LOT of questions about depression and was wondering if you could {possibly} e-mail me about this? amandanielsen8@gmail.com.

I'd text you, but I don't want to put my number all over right here! haha. I am actually extremely grateful I came across this because I think it was an answer to silent prayers.

Much love,

Amanda