Crohn's Disease Forum » Support Forum » Mental Health Support » Therapy and anti-depressant-- not helping?

11-02-2014, 11:16 PM   #1
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Iowa
Therapy and anti-depressant-- not helping?

Hey everyone.

I want to start by saying I am absolutely not a threat to myself, in terms of self-injury or suicide. I promise. I was diagnosed with depression and anxiety in September 2013, basically once I started grad school and let all of that stuff just... bubble up to the surface. I started talking to a school therapist which seemed to help (basically I cried in her office on a weekly basis) but the policy is that you have to transfer to a private practitioner by the end of the semester. I went and checked out two different therapists and saw them both for two or three sessions, but I feel like I wasn't getting anything out of therapy. Like, I felt like all I could get was the same cookie-cutter "Don't forget to take care of yourself" advice that really doesn't help me. Does anyone struggle this much with therapy?

Right now I'm not seeing any therapist because I just... don't really see the point of what I'm supposed to get out of the sessions. They're CBT, if that helps. Lexapro has been helping with anxiety which is super helpful, but I'd rather lay in my bed for 24 hours a day than actually interact with anyone beyond my computer and I know that's not a very healthy response.

Does anyone have any advice? It's like, I know I used to be happy and more optimistic, but I don't remember how with all the fog in my head.
11-03-2014, 12:14 AM   #2
Jennifer's Avatar
My depression and anxiety worsened when I was in grad school as well. I did the same you did and went to a school therapist (suggested by other students who were having the same problems, what is it with grad school? ). My sessions went well with that therapist and she diagnosed me with panic disorder (I had already been diagnosed with depression). I then went to the school's psychiatrist and started taking Klonopin 1mg twice a day along with Paxil 20mg. The Paxil made me practically bedridden. I was seeing light trails and was super tired and just slept for three days before I called the pharmacist and asked them if it was normal or not. They said it wasn't and to see my doctor.

I decided to stick with just the anxiety meds to see how I did with that because anxiety and depression come hand in hand (this was suggested by my psychiatrist). If you're able to treat one efficiently then it will help the other as well. For me staying on just anxiety meds has helped me a lot. Antidepressants caused a lot of side effects with me which made me more depressed (I've been on different ones off and on since high school). I still have days where I'm unproductive but I'm nowhere near where I was (destructive behavior like excessive drinking, over spending, not taking care of myself in general along with crying spells etc). If you do well with antidepressants though then stick with that route. Have you tried taking anything for anxiety?

I have seen two therapists since the one I saw during grad school. One was a complete idiot and I only went once. The other was awesome, even better than the one I saw in grad school. Therapists can be hit or miss so if you do want therapy (which is helpful when you're with the right person for you) then you'll have to shop around until you find someone that you work well with. I'm not currently seeing one anymore but if I needed one then I know who to see now.

Good luck and remember that we're here to help at anytime as well.
Diagnosis: Crohn's in 1991 at age 9
Surgeries: 1 Small Bowel Resection in 1999; Central IV in 1991-92
Meds for CD: 6MP 75mg
Things I take: Tenormin 25mg (PVCs and Tachycardia), Junel (endometriosis), Tylenol 3 (Osteoarthritis), Zantac 150mg 2/day (acid reflux), Klonopin 1mg (Panic Disorder), Imitrex 25mg (migraines), Zofran 8mg (nausea)
Currently in: REMISSION Thought it was a flare but it's just scar tissue from my resection. Dealing with a stricture. Remission from my resection, 19 years and counting.
11-04-2014, 03:01 PM   #3
movielover40's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2014
Takes a while for an anti-depressant to work.

Hang in there....
11-04-2014, 06:20 PM   #4
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Iowa
Thank you for your messages And yeah, I think it's something like 1/3 to 1/2 of grad students need anti-depressants or anti-anxiety meds... and we choose to do grad school lol

I think the medication really is helping my anxiety a lot. I used to have panic attacks at work and have to go cry in the bathroom to calm myself down. And one of my co-workers (who I've confided in about some of my troubles) said that I seem a little more mellow now. So that's a good thing, I guess? and my doctor recommended doing some light cardio to get some endorphins going too, but I need to actually get up the oomph to go do it.

Thank you for sharing <3
11-05-2014, 01:17 AM   #5
Jennifer's Avatar
Dancing is always a fun cardio exercise. I like to play those Just Dance games on the Wii. It's a fun little work out and feels like less of a chore for me. I've never liked working out personally and need that extra fun factor.
11-08-2014, 10:06 AM   #6
Join Date: Nov 2014
Location: Mt sinai, New York
Hi. This the first time in any forum. My Crohn's has been acting up. I have not been to work Ina few days and my employer is acting angry and that's just makes my pain worst when I talk to them. Should I have the doctor call them to explain this is a disability? Work is not wearing me out as much as dealing with employer humiliating me for my absences. Should I just quit? I am taking anti depressants and anxiety medicine to deal with the " mean" people. Don't know what to do. Any ideas?

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