From a man in the U.S.: I’ve been depressed for as long as I remember. At the beginning of this year, a really traumatic event happened which triggered the most intense symptoms, and made my anxiety something I couldn’t handle anymore.
I’ve since tried therapy, being sober (I was a pretty heavy drug user at one point in my life, and have since become one again, to a much worse degree), medication, basically everything I was offered by my therapists/psychiatrist.
I’ve managed to get back out of the house (I did not leave a single time for 2 months following the original incident), and can perform in public with no issue, and I can pretend to be happy and friendly, but the entire time, I know I’m depressed.
I don’t want to be depressed. The only thing that really truly helps anymore is hard drugs (heroin, cocaine, pills, etc.), and I know that’s not healthy. I just don’t know what to do anymore. I don’t want to go on like this, and it seems like nothing will ever be able to help me.
A: I’m sorry you have been through such hard times and that you are feeling so discouraged. You are, of course, correct that using hard drugs isn’t healthy. In fact, one of the side effects of chronic drug use is depression. So it’s not the solution you think it is. Yes, the temporary high provides some relief, but we both know it is only temporary. Long term, drug abuse is preventing you from learning the skills you need to manage the anxiety and to heal from trauma.
You say that you have tried many things to get better. I’m thinking that may be the problem. You’ve tried many things but have you stuck with any one thing long enough for it to be effective? You need to get back into recovery. You need to stay in recovery even if it gets terribly uncomfortable. It is by learning to deal with the discomfort (not avoiding it) that you will truly heal.
I hope you will dig deep and find the courage and the motivation to take care of yourself by getting into regular treatment and by sticking to it.
I wish you well.