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Depression ~ What Can We Do? How To Help With This

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#1 jangel


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Posted 23 October 2010 - 07:51 AM

Many of us have it...some call it the Black Dog...others call it sadness, and seldom do we truly discuss it.


This is a true killer.

I myself have fought it since I was a child, but did not know what it was.

That feeling of hopelessness, with no relief or repose from the pain, in our hearts, in our minds, in our bodies, in our souls.

Many sleep constantly.

They try to quit life.

I too at times have contemplated this.

Suicide seems an answer....just to make the pain stop.

But we hurt our loved ones and this is not an answer.

This truly perpetuates it doing this, passes it on in tortuous ways to our children and families...we don't want them to hurt like this too....never.

We have many many people on this site, ill, buried in their minds, lost in their hearts for a time.

Depression....eats at your soul.

So this is what we are trying to do in this thread.

Bring it into the light.

Find constructive ways to deal with this illness.

To pull people back from this brink of destruction...and back into Life.

In this thread we will discuss this with all it's aspects.

Myself and itinkso, as well as all our staff, are hunting high and low to find info on this.

And if nothing else, we might just save someone from falling into the abyss of this killer...that is our hope.

So please, all contribute. Bring this into the light of day and share your thoughts and feelings on this subject.

The life you might just save could be your own.

And know that even in the darkness,


Many of you deal with this or help others with this illness.

Please, feel free to contribute any info you feel will help others.

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#2 jangel


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Posted 23 October 2010 - 10:27 AM

What is Depression?

Depression isn’t just a temporary mood swing or a sign of personal weakness. It’s a serious medical condition with many emotional, cognitive, physical and behavioural symptoms.

Many people feel ashamed or afraid to seek help, others make light of their symptoms, leading them to suffer in silence. It’s important to remember that depression isn’t a character defect or something that you have brought on yourself.

Who Does Depression Hurt?

During their lifetime about 1 in 10 people in Canada will experience an episode of major depressive disorder (the diagnosis given to those suffering from depression)

Talking About Depression

Talking with a friend or family member about what they’re going through can be a positive step towards recovery. Whether you're suggesting that someone seek professional help or encouraging them to continue with a treatment plan, it's important to be aware of what you say and the way you say it.

Tips for having a successful conversation

Be an "active listener." Before responding with your own thoughts, try repeating back what the person has just said.

Don't worry about having the right answer. Just being present and showing you care can go a long way.

Don't belittle the person's feelings.

Attempts to say something positive like "You don't seem that bad to me" can actually make a depressed person feel worse.

Don't forget to say things like "I love you," "I'm here for you," and "You're not alone in this."

Talking with someone who is undergoing treatment

Don't assume that someone in treatment no longer needs to talk. Many people get discouraged in the first few weeks, before they feel any real improvement. It's critical that you stay in close contact and urge the person to hang in there.

Give positive feedback. Let them know when you see any improvement—even a small one.

Try reassuring them, and encouraging them to stick with the treatment with an expression of hope that with time they will feel better.

Journey to Improvement


The first step to recovering from depression is not only recognizing the symptoms, but talking to a doctor.

Talking with your doctor or healthcare provider about how you’re feeling can help them make a proper diagnosis of depression.

If your doctor confirms your suspicions, it’s only natural for your thoughts to turn to questions about treatment.

The Science Behind Depression

Many researchers share the view that depression is caused by an imbalance of naturally occurring chemicals, known as neurotransmitters,12 found throughout the brain and the body.

Neurotransmitters help transport messages between nerve cells.

Serotonin and norepinephrine and dopamine are examples of these neurotransmitters.

In the brain, serotonin and norepinephrine are thought to be associated with mood as well as regulating and reducing feelings of pain that come from the body.

Dopamine is thought to be associated with appetite, loss of pleasure and energy or drive.

Here are a few options your doctor may recommend:


If your doctor recommends medication, make sure to talk to your doctor about the
treatment options available to you.

Talk Therapy

There are many forms of talk therapy.

Cognitive behavioral therapy is the most studied and is an effective treatment for depression.

Cognitive behavioural therapy helps people correct negative thought patterns and better adapt to the world around them.

Talk therapy has few known risks and is generally considered to be safe.

Lifestyle Changes

Depression can affect many different areas of your life.

As a result your doctor may recommend specific lifestyle changes that include exercise, nutrition, and proper sleep.

Another good idea may be to reach out to friends and family for support, as well as taking the time to be social with others.

Getting help for your depression can change your life. Don’t wait – depression is an illness that can, and should, be treated.

Get started by talking to a loved one or friend today about how you are feeling.

They can also help you talk to a doctor.

Print out the results from the Symptom Checklist to help start the conversation between a friend or loved one.

(Link to Symptom Checklist...click here)

Questions About Treatment

Starting treatment is an important step for a person with depression.

Whether it’s medication, therapy, or both.

Treatment can raise a number of questions for everyone involved.

How soon will my friend or family member start to feel better?

Most antidepressants take several weeks to produce their full effect.

In some cases, the dose of medication may need to be increased, a different drug may be added, or the first drug may be replaced with another

(see posts below for cannabis treatment of depression)

Will the first medication prescribed help control my friend or family member’s depressive symptoms?

Not necessarily. Sometimes patients will not be successful on the first medication they try.1

How long will my friend or family member have to be on their medication?

Many people with depression need to be treated for several months. Or a lifetime......

Only your friend or family member’s doctor can determine the appropriate length of treatment.

Will my friend or family member experience side effects while taking their medication?

Medications do have the potential to cause side effects.

Discussing with a doctor and/or pharmacist the potential side effects of the medication will help you understand what to expect when they begin treatment.

It’s also important to inform the doctor or pharmacist when side effects do occur.

They may be able to offer some tips on how to manage them.

From: depressionhurts.ca
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#3 Itinkso


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Posted 23 October 2010 - 11:59 AM

the story of Kay Lee......amazing woman!!!

The Bottom of the Mind: Depression

by Kay Lee

I've agreed to lay my pain to paper only because my miracle medicine is still illegal.

Before 1992, a handful of doctors proved beyond a shadow of a doubt in a court of law that Cannabis was vital to their patient's medical care. The people representing NIDA and Health and Human Services still to this day provide the shrinking list of living patients with an ongoing monthly supply through their approved pharmacy. The rest of us lose our property, go to prison, and are labled 'criminal' for the rest of our lives.

It's important that you understand that, despite what the United States Drug Czar would have you believe, marijuana reform is not 'cheech and chong', but a dead serious effort to tell the truth: Marijuana can be used as medicine to drastically raise a sick person's quality of life. The plant does not take lives, and in some cases it can actually save a life: I know... because it saved mine.

But since I've learned that truth, due to prohibition laws, I can go to prison any day for nothing more than using a plant that heals me. In fact, I was arrested once, in 2006, right after my heart surgery at the tender age of 63.

Because my medicine, so vital to my health, is illegal, I have learned as much about the drug war and the inside of prison as is possible, considering I have never lived in one. I have made it my business to know because I could be arrested at any time for what I do: I must repeatedly ignore a bad law in order to use God's plant to stay alive and useful.

If I go to prison, I will exist in a cold concrete cell and my body will deteriorate. I will be deprived of sunshine and marijuana, thus my mind could sink into the small, cramped world of depression. But, my spirit is strong because of my years of use and I do what I have to do. So, never, ever believe a rumor that Kay Lee killed herself. I am much too strong for that now.

I wasn't strong in my pre-marijuana life. I was very fragile. Depression is like a gray thread woven throughout my family cloth, so I had a high chance of living with it. My mother dreadfully suffered from it in her older years; and when I say suffer, I want you to understand that mental and physical pain are the same: They both hurt.

I'd been kind of a loner, inside myself all my childhood years. I grew from a withdrawn child, one my mom labeled "moody", into a broken adult. By the time I turned twenty I was having rages, followed by lots of tears, followed by long periods of silence; days, weeks where I could not speak, could not eat, could not respond. I knew I was flawed, but had no understanding of what was happening.

By the time I sought help several years later, I weighed 75 pounds. Suicide had begun to dominate my thoughts. It seemed the only way to stop the horrible sadness. The early attempts were weak, using generic pills that made me vomit but did nothing to ease the pain.

My first real and recognised breakdown sent me on a seven year journey into hell. When I couldn't stop crying for several days straight, I landed in a psychologist's office and was given elavil, then switched to melaril. We knew it wasn't working when I failed at my next attempt. I took pills and laid in the tub, and when it didn't work, I dressed soaking wet and ran barefoot aimlessly for nearly an hour on the frozen February streets.

I came down with pneumonia, almost comatose despair, and was graduated to the heavy stuff, Elivil, Lithium, Librium, all kinds of progressively vicious chemicals. And the sadness grew worse and worse. I could see myself losing control, but I didn't know how to stop it. Neither did the doctors, but I had insurance, and they were willing, even eager, to experiment with expensive new drugs.

For seven years I tried to destroy myself. I hid in a closet and chopped my long hair off to the roots. I threw my beautiful paintings into the river. I slept too much or too little, cried too easily... and raged. And I faithfully, obediently took their pills day after hopeless day.

I became repulsed when touched and that really hurt my children. When I began smelling myself and washing numerous times a day, I withdrew further from everyone. When I went to see the shrink, I sat way across the room. When he found out why, I was admitted to the psych ward of an expensive hospital. I stayed for a month and began the perfectly legal 'Haldol drool'. This stuff 'drug' me down so deep, I couldn't even remember to swallow.

For seven years I let them try whatever they wanted. Every time they took me off another medicine to get ready for the next, I'd have withdrawal. Each drug has its own hell, and some would set my arms and legs to twitching; some made me vomit. Haldol, my nomination for devil drug, made me drool and did something terrible to my brain. For awhile after that drug, I could see the words of a book, but I could not make any sense of them.

For seven years I grew sicker and sicker. As they changed my medicine, all the old leftover medicine had gone into a shoebox in the top of the closet, but it was as if someone else had put it there: I never consciously thought about the pills, even as I stashed them. Then, one night, without awareness, as I bathed the children, put them to bed and meticulously cleaned the house, I slowly consumed all of them

Through a series of extraordinary interventions, which included my mother 2000 miles away, my doctor, and ma bell, I did not die, but I came as close to success as I was ever going to get by my own hands.

I vaguely remember a fireman, who had broken down the door to get into my home, walking me, dragging me, up and down the hallway. "Wake up....stay awake," he kept saying, but I retreated to nothingness.

The next memory I have is the blindingly brilliant emergency room, fighting to keep them from sticking the tubes into my nose and mouth. When I heard the ambulance driver say, "Opps... There's lunch," I gave up and sought sleep. I would not be allowed to die this time either.

Three days later, I came back to the world at the sound of my doctor's voice asking the nurse, "How long has she been like this?" My body was sitting up, alive, but my mind had been somewhere far away and quiet. He sat down beside the bed, and asked me simply, "Why?" I could not speak and had no answer I was willing to share because I did not understand either.

He told me that he had saved me this time, but that next time I did this, the state was going to lock me in their very unhealthy mental ward. I numbly told him it didn't matter, because it was the truth. Nothing mattered.

For the few next years, I lived in a fog. I quietly played my mother role, but I was numb from medication, paralyzed by depression, just existing. I did what I had to do, but had lost hope that life would ever be more than bearable.

In 1977, when my 13 year old son drowned, the doctors asked me if I was a danger to myself. I told them that if a big Mack truck hit me, I could at least find out where my son was. So, they put me in the mental ward overnight.

I lay awake in the dark, hearing the moans and commotion of the disturbed people around me and the sounds were a reflection of the way I felt.

I went home the next day and mechanically put together my son's funeral, but the essence of me was not there. I was 39 years old and though I felt already dead, there was no relief.

After his cremation, an Indian acquaintance handed me a joint and said, "it might help and it certainly won't hurt." Not only was I desperate, but I instinctively knew the truth. So, without hesitation, I sat out back in the sun, alone on a stump, and lit the marijuana cigarette.

I had taken only a couple of puffs and a humbling thing happened: I heard, felt, sensed a voice that said, "If you can handle this [my son's death], you will be able to handle anything that comes your way."

...And my closed and shadowed mind opened like the petals of a flower, and, like waking after a nightmare and throwing open the windows of a dark and lonely room; Like the early morning sunshine dancing on the floor, my mind was suddenly flooded with light and life.

I physically gasped...I had not realized before how dark it was in there until the cannabis plant turned on the light. I felt warm, in control and at peace for the first time in my life. I felt strong and clean and whole and capable of dealing with whatever was before me. The feeling of total peace stayed with me for three days, the humbleness forever, and the strength continues to grow with everything I 'handle'.

I didn't know to call it medicine back then, but I took that shoebox full of perfectly legal and very dangerous drugs that had slowly refilled and I buried it deep, deep in the earth near the lake. And I have, never, ever looked back. I thank God and His plant for the healing. He said everything I needed was here and He meant it.

I made plenty of mistakes, but I raised my five remaining children virtually as a single mother, and did hard decent work to support them. I stood strong during one daughter's three month coma, and helped birth and nurture eight perfect grandchildren and a great-grandson.

When the last child was no longer dependant on me, at the age of 50, I managed three years in college, mastering four honors courses. I did in-the-schoolroom research and learned about the lies - until I knew enough to realize that I was supporting harmful policies with my silence.

I continued my personal journey for justice by changing to in-the-trenches action. I, shy grandma that I was, quit college, left my home, and began to stand in public places talking about 'politically unpopular' truths, debunking the myths, challenging authority, and comforting the people whose lives had been or could be altered and destroyed by marijuana laws. I devoted myself to the plant, its creator, and its people. Can you blame me? 10 million Americans, many of them good citizens, have lost their rights and freedom over these laws.

I rejoice in living without doctors and councilors and psychiatrists, without debilitating drugs, without the constant overwhelming pain of depression. My mind is no longer filled with cobwebs and fog. I am no longer weak. I rejoice! I am a benefit to this world.

My God, why would anyone want to take this from me? From those I am able to help? What could possibly motivate anyone to want to throw me back into that darkness and make me useless to others because I have discovered the benefits of this plant?

I just don't understand...

If you don't know enough about marijuana to help change the laws, Please...Please Learn more!

The Bottom of My Mind : Depression
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#4 Itinkso


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Posted 23 October 2010 - 12:03 PM


I can speak with the authority of personal experience on this subject because without the plant, I'd most likely be dead. Plain and simple, cannabis relieves depression in most cases with none of the side effects of conventional pharmaceuticals.

Chronic Depression complicated by Seasonal Affective Disorder ruled my life until I was almost 40. I did not know what it was, what caused it, and the doctors I went to did not seem to know how to fix it. I would not be alive today if, after my son's death, a neighbor hadn't brought a joint over with the instructions, "It can't hurt you and it might help." I guess I had vaguely heard the cannabis propaganda, but I was in such mental pain, had been for a long time, that I was willing to try anything at that low point. Thank God a cop didn't see me sitting out back on a rock smoking 'marijuana': I'd have lost my chance to heal and probably my chance at a productive life.

My personal story, 'The Bottom of The Mind: Depression"

Every sick person I've ever worked with has a degree of depression above the norm due to their physical limitations and pain. I once nursed a quadriplegic who could move only his arms but his hands were drawn and of little use. He was denied a nurse by the county because he had been arrested and was awaiting trial for trying to grow 12 scraggly cannabis plants in his back yard. Since he had quit using cannabis, his leg spasms had retured full strength and had caused sores on the back of his feet and legs that made the doctor suggest 'amputation'. The patient refused to go back to that doctor so the county would not give him a nurse until he got a new doctor. I was coming to fill in until he could get a nurse assigned him. He had been alone for three weeks when I arrived. He talked about how cold it got one night and how he couldn't pull the blanket at the foot of the bed over himself; how his dog was hungry and he couldn't feed him; how he felt lying in feces three days until a male cousin could stop by and take care of some of his needs. He asked if I knew how he had maintained his sanity during that depressing time. "I would smoke pot, watch the ceiling fan go round and round until my mind would take off into space and I'd forget my problems." How could anyone be so cruel as to deny this man the benefits of this plant? Kay Lee
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#5 Itinkso


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Posted 23 October 2010 - 12:12 PM

two sides to the coin?

Cannabis: Potent Anti-Depressant In Low Doses, Worsens Depression At High Doses
(Oct. 24, 2007)

— A new neurobiological study has found that a synthetic form of THC, the active ingredient in cannabis, is an effective anti-depressant at low doses.

However, at higher doses, the effect reverses itself and can actually worsen depression and other psychiatric conditions like psychosis.

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Seasonal affective disorder

Psychedelic drug

It has been known for many years that depletion of the neurotransmitter serotonin in the brain leads to depression, so SSRI-class anti-depressants like Prozac and Celexa work by enhancing the available concentration of serotonin in the brain. However, this study offers the first evidence that cannabis can also increase serotonin, at least at lower doses.

Laboratory animals were injected with the synthetic cannabinoid WIN55,212-2 and then tested with the Forced Swim test -- a test to measure "depression" in animals; the researchers observed an antidepressant effect of cannabinoids paralleled by an increased activity in the neurons that produce serotonin. However, increasing the cannabinoid dose beyond a set point completely undid the benefits, said Dr. Gabriella Gobbi of McGill University.

"Low doses had a potent anti-depressant effect, but when we increased the dose, the serotonin in the rats' brains actually dropped below the level of those in the control group. So we actually demonstrated a double effect: At low doses it increases serotonin, but at higher doses the effect is devastating, completely reversed."

The anti-depressant and intoxicating effects of cannabis are due to its chemical similarity to natural substances in the brain known as "endo-cannabinoids," which are released under conditions of high stress or pain, explained Dr. Gobbi. They interact with the brain through structures called cannabinoid CB1 receptors. This study demonstrates for the first time that these receptors have a direct effect on the cells producing serotonin, which is a neurotransmitter that regulates the mood.

Dr. Gobbi and her colleagues were prompted to explore cannabis' potential as an anti-depressant through anecdotal clinical evidence, she said. "As a psychiatrist, I noticed that several of my patients suffering from depression used to smoke cannabis. And in the scientific literature, we had some evidence that people treated with cannabis for multiple sclerosis or AIDS showed a big improvement in mood disorders. But there were no laboratory studies demonstrating the anti-depressant mechanism of action of cannabis."

Because controlling the dosage of natural cannabis is difficult -- particularly when it is smoked in the form of marijuana joints -- there are perils associated with using it directly as an anti-depressant.

"Excessive cannabis use in people with depression poses high risk of psychosis," said Dr. Gobbi. Instead, she and her colleagues are focusing their research on a new class of drugs which enhance the effects of the brain's natural endo-cannabinoids.

"We know that it's entirely possible to produce drugs which will enhance endo-cannabinoids for the treatment of pain, depression and anxiety," she said.

The study, published in the October 24 issue of The Journal of Neuroscience, was led by Dr. Gabriella Gobbi of McGill University and Le Centre de Recherche Fernand Seguin of Hôpital Louis-H. Lafontaine, affiliated with l'Université de Montréal. First author is Dr. Gobbi's McGill PhD student Francis Bambico, along with Noam Katz and the late Dr. Guy Debonnel* of McGill's Department of Psychiatry.


Cannabis and Depression

Jay R. Cavanaugh, Ph.D.

Depression is actually a variety of disorders that affect approximately 18 million Americans. Women are twice as likely as men to suffer from some form of depression. Acuity, or seriousness, of depressive disorders ranges from mild to severe. Depression can be episodic, short lived or chronic. Depression is the leading cause of disability in America today costing the nation in excess of $47 billion dollars a year in lost productivity and health costs. Depression is a serious medical illness that can have numerous physical complications.

Depression may manifest as major depression, dysthymic disorder (a less severe form of major depression), or bipolar disorder (a type of depression that involves cycling between depressive and manic states). A host of factors are responsible for depression including:

Biological- a chemical imbalance of neurotransmitters and/or certain types of brain cell receptor sites is often seen in depression. Hormonal disorders including PMS (premenstrual syndrome) and PMDD (premenstrual dysthymic disorder) may influence or trigger depression. Depression may be linked to key biological events (i.e. post-partum depression or menopause).

Genetic- Twin studies indicate that depression is often found grouped in families. Scientists have not isolated a single "depression" gene but feel a relatively small grouping of genes are involved in depression.

Situational- Loss of a job, change in status, moving, divorce, and other major life stressors. Over use and chronic stimulation of the hypothalamic/pituitary/adrenal system (stress axis) has been implicated in depression.

Chronic Illness and Disability- Depression occurs in the large majority of patients with long- term disease and disability. A traumatic diagnosis (i.e. cancer) may trigger depression.

Personal Losses- The death of an immediate family member, close friend, or colleague.

Medications- Many commonly prescribed medications may have depression as a side effect. Certainly tranquillizing medications including the Benzodiazapams may cause or deepen depression.

Seasonal changes- Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is sometimes seen where depressive episodes are related to winter or overcast weather.

Alcohol and other drug abuse- Rates of depression in substance abusers are three times higher than the normal population. While many substance abusers are self-medicating a depression, studies show that chronic substance abuse itself leads to brain changes and depression.

Some recent studies have linked depression to chronic use of cannabis (several times/day for several years). This idea remains controversial. A current Australian study reviewed thousands of such cannabis users and found normal rates of depression once other factors such as alcohol use, gender, illness, etc., were accounted for.

Single agent prescription drugs called SSRI’s (Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors) are the most common form of treatment. Drugs like Prozac, Zoloft, and Paxil are in this category. These medications usually begin to work in one to four weeks. Side effects of SSRI’s can include sleeplessness, sexual dysfunction, and agitation. Older drugs called tricyclic antidepressants (i.e. Elavil) are also still used although their rate and severity of side effects is much higher than the SSRI’s. A new class of "bimodal" agents have recently been introduced (i.e. Serzone) that act on both the neurotransmitters serotonin and dopamine. Some of these agents such as Paxil and Serzone are also used in panic disorders and obsessive-compulsive disorders.

Individual psychotherapy and cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) in particular are often helpful in mild to moderate depression. Often a combination of CBT and a short course of medication are sufficient to relieve moderate depression.

Severe forms of depression with psychotic symptoms sometimes respond to today’s modified ECT therapy (electro-convulsive therapy) but the track record of this formerly brutal treatment clouds use and analysis of this controversial treatment.

Bipolar disorders are often treated with lithium carbonate a so called "mood stabilizer" lithium can lessen manic episodes but must be closely monitored as this metallic salt is highly toxic with side effects that include nausea, vomiting, and tremor. Patients undergoing lithium treatment require frequent blood tests to insure the correct blood level is maintained.

Recently anti-seizure drugs such as Valproate and Neurontin have been used alone or in combination with lithium. These powerful drugs may help but can produce mental dullness. Neither lithium nor anti-seizure medications seem to help the symptoms associated with the depressive cycle of bipolar disease. The SSRI’s and tricyclic drugs are usually avoided in fear of aggravating manic symptoms. When manic episodes include psychotic delusions and anti-psychotic medication is often added. Anti-anxiety drugs of the Benzodiazapam class may be added where agitation is a prominent feature. The medication management of bipolar disease is complex and can be hazardous.

In evaluating the efficacy of prescription medications in depression it is important to remember that many of the current clinical studies have been financed largely or wholly by the pharmaceutical industry.

Symptoms of depression include:

Sadness for prolonged periods. Fits of crying

Sleeplessness or excessive sleeping

Loss of appetite or excessive overeating

Sexual dysfunction

Anhedonia or the loss of pleasure in normal activities

Feelings of despair or hopeless

Feelings of low self esteem, guilt, or self loathing

Ideas of hurting oneself or thoughts of suicide

Unexplained lack of energy

Chronic pain that doesn’t respond to treatment

Anxious mood and irritability

Trouble concentrating

In bipolar disease the above noted symptoms may be present during the depressive cycle while the "manic" cycle may include features such as:


Rapid thoughts

A reduced "need" for sleep

Inflated self esteem or personal delusions

Irritable mood


Even a few of the preceding symptoms can indicate what is called a "clinical" depression if they persist for more than just a few weeks.

A clinical depression rarely improves without a medical intervention and some combination of treatment.

Suicidal thoughts or impulses should always be taken seriously.

The "truism" that suicidal patients won’t disclose their suicidal thoughts and that those who do are simply seeking attention is absolutely false. Seriously depressed patients may lack the "energy" for suicide, which is why the initial treatment and lifting of depression can be a particularly hazardous time. Patients who have a "plan" and the means to suicide are most likely to actually attempt harming themselves. One in every eight patients hospitalized for depression actually commits suicide.

Numerous patients report significant improvement and stabilization with their bipolar disorder when they utilize adjunctive therapy with medical cannabis. While some mental health professionals worry about the impact of cannabis on aggravating manic states, most bipolar patients trying cannabis find they "cycle" less often and find significant improvement in overall mood.

Bipolar disorders vary tremendously in the time spent in the depressive versus manic states. Those who experience extended depressive episodes are more likely to be helped with cannabis.

Patients who use cannabis to "relax" may be treating the anxiousness sometimes associated with depression.

Cannabis aids the insomnia sometimes present in depression and can improve appetite. Better pain control with cannabis can reduce chronic pain related depression.

While cannabis cannot yet be considered a primary treatment of major depression it may improve mood when used under physicians supervision and in combination with therapy and/or SSRI’s.

There is currently a debate as to which "strain" of cannabis is most appropriate for the adjunctive treatment of depression. Since symptoms are so individualistic it is hard to determine what strain is right expect empirically.

In general Sativa dominant strains tend to be more "up" and Indica dominant strains more relaxing.

Patients themselves are often the best judges of whether or not cannabis helps relieve the symptoms of depression. A poorly educated or narrow-minded physician may think any use of cannabis to be a substance abuse related aspect of depression.

More enlightened psychiatrists (i.e. Lester Grinspoon of Harvard Medical School) appreciate the often beneficial aspects of cannabis therapy.

Perhaps the most reliable yardstick of the efficacy of medical cannabis in the treatment of depression is whether or not specific aspects of functionality improve.

Functionality includes aspects such as self-care ability, job or school attendance, social interaction, normal sleeping, and cognitive skills.

More about Depression can be found at Intelihealth

(the website of Harvard Medical School: http://www.intelihealth.com

Depression References: MEDLINEplus: Depression

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#6 SandiaMts


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Posted 23 October 2010 - 12:26 PM

Depression....... When I first was diagnosed with this illness, and it is indeed an illness that is truly debilitating, I kind of shrugged it off. I did not know enough about the illness and just how insidious it can be. It can be caused by many things and has various manifestations in an individual. After going through a phase of denial/anger/malaise, I finally sought treatment. This was no laughing matter, pardon the pun, but really a cry out for help because I needed it. Background: In 2006, I had a major surgery to my leg that lasted for 8 hours. Knee surgeries were somewhat of a common thing over the past 20 years and I knew the risks/rewards from undergoing such a surgery. That night, while recovering in the hospital, I was in pain that I had never experienced in my lifetime to that point. A relatively healthy 38 year old guy bawling my eyes out to my wife on the phone (after visiting hours) for the entire night. I will always remember the 8 minute clock I was on hooked up to the pain pump. I knew to the second when I could push that button and receive the beloved morphine that made my pain subside a little bit. As the night drew on, I had a team of anesthesiologists (my angels of mercy) put me on a femoral nerve block, an epidural, and a new concoction of drugs that they would administer every couple of hours. I was still writhing in pain even with their best efforts to relieve it. When the dawn broke, I began vomiting uncontrollably and was given some type of medicine to prevent that. I am not sure of the exact time but visiting hours began at 9AM and I knew my beautiful wife would be there to comfort me. What happened next I was not able to talk about until about 2 years ago.... When my wife arrived, I was not conscious.....she assumed that I was simply sleeping because of being up all night in pain. She sat by my side and bless her heart, she fell asleep because she too was suffering with me on the phone the entire evening. My resident that assisted on the surgery just happened to come up to the recovery room. He was a young guy who I have the utmost respect for. He saw me in the room all ashen colored without any pulse or breathing. My wife stated that he called a "Code" and within a minute a team of doctors and nurses entered the room. The next thing I remember is that I am in the ICU with an oxygen mask on and my parents were in the room. My parents live in the North East so having them be in the room 2000 miles away was pretty unnerving. I spent the next 5 days in ICU......result.....I had respiratory and cardiac arrest. The doctors had no idea how long I was in this state but my blood oxygen level was 17%. Needless to say with my luck, the surgery was a failure. The pain experienced since that episode was something I care not to recall. I did my best to withstand the pain and even managed to begin flying again (my career a the time) but that ended when I was involved in a severe turbulence accident that ended up dislocating my shoulders and knocking a molar out. I was lucky to be alive! Being the stubborn individual that I am, I "put up" with the fact I could not use my shoulders/arms to even lift a jug of milk from the refrigerator. This persisted for a year until I finally got MRIs to indicate that my labrums in the shoulders were both shredded. Two more rounds of surgery on the shoulders. Just prior to the shoulder surgeries my doctor suggested going on Oxycontin to control the pain in my leg, shoulders, and back. I did not question this as all I needed was to get the pain under control and I figured that it would get better with time. OHHH HOW I WAS WRONG! The oxycontin worked but my doses had to be increased over the course of months to a point where it was not safe to go up any longer. I also saw an orthopedic surgeon who told me that the only way to have a chance at relieving the leg pain was to have a total knee replacement at 41 years young. One of the things that I needed to do was get off of the oxycontin 2 weeks prior to the surgery or pain management during the procedure and afterwards would be just about impossible. I was referred to a pain doctor that helped me undergo the withdrawls (pure agony). The knee replacement was a success but the pain in my body was still ever present. I wont get into the details but the amount of narcotics I was taking was insane. At the peak back in January of this year, I was on morphine twice daily with the max dose of oxycodone I could safely take. At this point, my pain management doctor recommended cannabis and that is how I found Green Passion! January was also the time that the doctors decided it was time for me to have some comprehensive blood work. To add to this mess of a body, it turns out that I have an autoimmune disorder that I have to take oral and inject-able medicines for. This has a whole new set of side effects one of which is having to KNOW that there is a bathroom close at hand or risk a very embarrassing event. How Depression Fits In: Prior to the Total Knee Replacement, I started seeing a mental health professional based on a recommendation from my primary doctor. This was to see if I could learn some techniques for dealing with chronic pain. She is a WONDERFUL person who diagnosed me with depression due to the chronic pain. I did not think that this was possible as I was not "Crying all the time". Ohhhh how I was wrong! You see, sadness/crying is NOT always a symptom of depression. ANGER/IRRITABILITY are also signs and my family was experiencing this first hand. The straw that broke the camel's back, and made ME realize that I suffer from depression, is when my wife simply touched my shoulder when I was in the kitchen. I blew up like a mad man swearing at her and yelling. She did NOTHING wrong but something in my brain kicked on and I was so angry....at NOTHING! This symptom of depression is getting better thankfully, but the ability to get out of bed and WANT to do fun things is very hard for me. When we do things that are fun such as going out to dinner, seeing shows, being with friends, etc. I feel as though I am just going through the motions. Being happy is a rare and strange occurrence these days. I have good days and bad days....sometimes I get into a "Funk" where several days go by and I simply do not want to talk. My mental health doctors said to me something that really hit home: To get healthy I need to treat the physical issues AS WELL AS the mental ones. I started taking antidepressants to assist. For several months, they started to make me feel a bit more like ME. However, the ones that I was on had serious withdrawal symptoms....brain shivers YUCK! I stopped taking them all together because in MY mind, I simply had to reduce the number of pills I was taking. This was dangerous and pretty damn stupid. Where I am at now: So here we are today. Not a good day but not a bad day either. As those of you that suffer with this can attest to, sometimes you just feel blah..... Am I better now than about 2 years ago?....DAMN RIGHT! Am I the person that I was prior to all this.....not at all. What keeps ME going is that I have a wonderful family and a handful of very close friends. I also realize, or pray, that when the pain issues that are still chronic go away.....I will begin to feel like my "normal self". It is not much to hang on to but it is what I use to keep me going when things are rough. Depression is a terrible thing. It affects more people than many folks truly realize. It is an illness and NOTHING to be ashamed of (even though I go through periods where I AM ashamed of having this problem). If any of you reading this are experiencing this illness or have loved ones that do, realize that you are not alone and that having hope to one day regain yourself or loved ones back can happen! I wanted to put a face on this by relaying my story. If I can be of any help....if only someone to chat with, please feel free to do so..... I wish you all the best! Sandia :woohoo:
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#7 Bueller


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Posted 23 October 2010 - 01:03 PM

I don't have it but live with it, bipolar wife...the days when she was involuntarily committed to a psych ward... horrible place to be in your head or your body... We should have a schedule of people to cover chat for the season. So those alone will have a family member to be with, if even their virtual one, for many here, that is all that they have. That season is the worst when people alone leave us.
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#8 mediuse


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Posted 23 October 2010 - 01:13 PM

Sign me up :) gonna be by myself from the 11th dec onwards... heheheh ...Reckon I could spare the time :woohoo: Have yet to read your post J....gotta be in the right frame of mind...but Yes..I too fight the Black Dog. We actually had here in Oz, a prominent Federal politician publicly announce he suffers from depression...he supports a lot of initiatives fighting it and offering help. Be back to post more when I've gathered myself a bit better :) muA
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#9 DEBhasgrn


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Posted 23 October 2010 - 02:47 PM

You know I too suffer with this disease, bi-polar depression,

In the world out here, the depressed person shuts all communication with loved ones down,,

We try to fake it, not let anyone know the hell that is going on inside our heads,

we don't want to burden anyone, when in reality what is happening is our loved ones do see and do feel helpless on how to help...
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#10 Itinkso


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Posted 24 October 2010 - 04:26 AM

Smoking cannabis 'alleviates pain and depression' Puffing cannabis from a pipe can significantly reduce chronic pain in patients with damaged nerves, a study has shown. Published: 2:47AM BST 30 Aug 2010 The researchers used herbal cannabis, or "grass", at four potency levels Photo: REUTERS Smoking the drug also lessened anxiety and depression, said researchers. Pill preparations of cannabis extract have previously been successful in treating certain types of pain. But researchers avoided studying the effects of smoking cannabis, as if taking the drug to get high. A team of Canadian scientists conducted a trial to test inhaled cannabis in 21 patients with chronic neuropathic pain caused by traumatic injury or surgery. The researchers used herbal cannabis, or ''grass'', at four potency levels. Patients aged 25 to 77 were asked to smoke 25 milligrams of the drug from a pipe three times a day. The highest-potency cannabis, containing 9.4% of the active ingredient THC, reduced pain, decreased anxiety and depression, and aided sleep. Lead researcher Dr Mark Ware, director of clinical research at the Alan Edwards Pain Management Unit, McGill University Health Centre, said: ''We found that 25mg herbal cannabis with 9.4% THC, administered as a single smoked inhalation three times daily for five days, significantly reduces average pain intensity compared with a 0% THC cannabis placebo in adult subjects with chronic post-traumatic/post-surgical neuropathic pain.'' No serious adverse effects occurred during the trial. All the patients taking active cannabis reported one occasion of feeling ''high'' and euphoric, and some complained of headaches, dry eyes, a burning sensation, dizziness, numbness and coughs. No significant changes in vital signs, heart rate or kidney function were recorded. The findings, reported in the Canadian Medical Association Journal, CMAJ, are believed to be the first from a clinical trial of smoked cannabis. The authors recommended more studies with higher potencies of THC, longer follow-up periods, and flexible dosing. Long-term safety studies of smoked cannabis for medical purposes were also needed, said the researchers. In an accompanying commentary, Professor Henry McQuay, a pain expert from Oxford University, said that getting the trial over regulatory hurdles ''must have been a major nightmare''. He added: ''This trial adds to the trickle of evidence that cannabis may help some of the patients who are struggling at present.'' http://www.telegraph...depression.html
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#11 Itinkso


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Posted 24 October 2010 - 04:32 AM

Depression - Cannabis - Euphoria SOURCE: http://www.salem-new...eque_102308.php JackHerer added this Phillip Leveque has spent his life as a Combat Infantryman, Physician Pharmacologist and Toxicologist. Marijuana leaf Image courtesy: c-ville.com (MOLALLA, Ore.) - The Merck Manual indicates 20 percent of women and 12 percent of men will suffer clinical depression. This is a rather depressing world we’re living in. Antidepressant drugs are among the most prescribed medications but their adverse side effects can often be paradoxically lethal with suicide being prominent. Todays TV news presents a new electromagnetic machine for depression which stimulates the brain which probably causes cannabinoid secretions which makes patient subjects feel better. It had better, a treatment series costs 6 thousand dollars. Well, I have a surprise for some people. The U.S. Govt says cannabis as an alleged drug causes euphoria which (surprise surprise) causes euphoria which is addicting. Imagine, a very safe replacement for amphetamine, once the most prescribed and addicting mood stimulants being replaced with cannabis. The U.S. Govt estimates about 70 million cannabis users. I have medically interviewed at least 4000 of them. Almost all were long time users. None complained of adverse euphoria. If such a high percentage of the population have clinical depression certainly many of my 4000 patients had depression which unfortunately is not an acceptable condition for an Oregon medical marijuana permit. The Oregon “egg heads” in charge of the program will not accept ANY psychological problem – it must be physical! This is really strange. One of my largest patient groups are PTSD Veterans (about 400 of them). Most found out in Vietnam that cannabis gives best relief for battle stress. Whether battle stress produces/causes depression may be arguable. For a Combat Infantryman his only real relief is a “million dollar wound” which will get him away from certain death. If that doesn’t cause depression nothing will. Anxiety and blood curdling fear are certainly part of this PTSD syndrome. The worst factor is that once a person has PTSD, there is usually no escape…most people know that severe battle Veterans cannot talk about their experiences it hurts too much. When these PTSD Veterans get/got home with nightmares etc., the VA doctors and non-doctors prescribed every kind of drug available. The Vets usually found out most of their drugs made them worse. They rediscovered cannabis but the VA non-doctors said you can’t use illegal drugs (even if they work best) and have VA treatment. How absurd. Believe it or not the VA system is supposed to HELP Vets. In the meantime, with 70 million cannabis users many vets are using. Alternately many are alcoholics or tobacco addicts. Both of these cause hundreds of thousands of deaths. Cannabis has never killed anybody. YES CANNABIS WILL ALLEVIATE DEPRESSION.
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Posted 24 October 2010 - 06:56 PM

I have been battling this pretty much all of my life. I recognize a lot of sections in the above articles in my own life.

#13 Ub3rB0ng


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Posted 25 October 2010 - 03:57 PM

Hi GP brothers and sisters,I too have struggled and still do struggle daily with bi-polar depression.If anyone ever wants to chat or needs someone to talk with or anything just hollar :D:

Edited by Ub3rB0ng, 01 November 2010 - 12:10 PM.

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#14 DEBhasgrn


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Posted 25 October 2010 - 04:31 PM

tis an awful handling for folk with this

i have to say a lotta folk talk about it now

which is good a few famous folk celebs like

have been on the news etc lately chatting about it

years ago it twas a tabbo ,then u got the electric shock treatment :D:

things have moved on 10 fold from then thank the lord

thanks jangle for this :)your a whole goodin ...

Health and happiness to all

To my surprise and disappointment, it was not too long ago that I found out they still are doing the electric shock, they might call it something else but it is still here,, it is still doing damage...
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#15 Lucky_Cat


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Posted 26 October 2010 - 04:17 AM

I know of several techniques one can employ, from reflective listening to positive guided imagery, recognising depression is key imho, even welcoming it, most of the nicest switched on people I have met over the course of my life to date have suffered from depression and are richer in lifes tapestry for it. reflective listening would be a tad difficult online..
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#16 DEBhasgrn


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Posted 26 October 2010 - 07:12 AM

Has anyone had shock treatment?? Even now it is an untold thing, people are embarrassed and even now in this day and age there are still depressed people walking around not talking about it, for fear of what their loved ones will think or what it will do to their loved ones as most of us who are afflicted with this disease don't want to be a burden. The depressed person tends to close up and not talk to anyone, they won't answer the phone, they don't want people looking at them with that sad so sorry for you look. The depressed person will try to fake it till they make it, trying to hide the pain they are in,,they just don't know what to do, they only know the pain this depression causes mentally and physically, it affects every day and every thing you do or used to do,,, My whole life I have been struggling with depression, even as a child before I even knew why I was crying, as a teen it got worse to the point I started thinking about how horrible I feel and I just wanted to end it all.. I struggled with this until finally at the age of 50 I was finally diagnosed with bi-polar,, At last it had a name to it, finally I realized it wasn't all my fault, it wasn't that I wasn't trying hard enough to escape the depression, God only knows how many times I heard that from people,, They would say, Get up, do something, get out of this mood you are in,, It wasn't their fault, they didn't know any better,, Thank heavens, with explaining to them what my bipolar disorder does to people.. So along with me explaining and then the family realizing there are other friends and family who suffer with this, Well I guess Deb must know what she is talking about,, Sad it took them to find out that I am not the only one for them to except me and that this depressions I get are real and it is so real that they now understand that when I am heading for that black hole and have been there for far to long, it is then that I know to ask for medical help, it is far to dangerous for me to wait any longer... 15 years ago, long before they realized I had bi-polar, they put me through counselors, they put me through psychiatrists, Then one day they put me in a circle of counselors and psychiatrists, They were there in front of me to tell me they had no idea what was wrong with me, why I was so depressed,, Then they threw at me something that I thought was out dated by then, I thought this treatment to be barbaric long before they wanted to tell me, I needed shock treatment,, I was so shocked and hurt that I couldnt trust anyone to do me right,, I proceeded to stand up from my chair, I stood tall and took over my life,, I walked out the door after I told them, I felt like I was back in the movie,, One Flew Over The Cuckoos Nest and they were not going to do that to me, God I just couldn't imagine.. So for years without insurance now and losing Dr's that were no good for me anyways, I was alone, I was doomed to be this way for life and was in hopes it didn't take over my life... But I am better now, The depressions are not as frequent as they used to be,, Oh I still get depressed but if I am lucky it doesn't last long, That I can deal with,, But I still get scared with each bout of depression that it might get bad, which is not good for the mental state, the worrying will bring it on more and stronger... I just real recently went into a depression that was sinking me deeper into that black hole, After three years I had to once again ask for help,, I feel blessed though that I had those three years feeling the so called normal life...A perfect life would be that I never have to feel the depression again,, But that is unreasonable to think,, I will take what I have though... Three years rest is three years of feeling normal for the first time in my life.. As far as this shock treatment still being used in the medical field,, Well I used to work in nursing homes and also home health care,, I have taken care of the old timers who many years ago, in the old days was given the shock treatment only for the depressed people losing a big part of their mind, and it got worse for them as they got older,,, A year ago I was told by my daughter a story about this young woman who suffered a lot with depression, To my surprise once again, they suggested the shock treatment,, being so young and grasping for any help she could find, she agreed to this treatment,, At first she thought it might be helping, but after a few treatments she started to forget things,, Again, because she was so young and wanted this horrible depression to go away, she never said anything about the forgetting, she figured it would amount to nothing,, Well she now is in and out of the hospital with her condition getting worse, It didn't take away her depressions, it did take away her memories,,
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#17 Lucky_Cat


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Posted 26 October 2010 - 10:04 AM

RE the worrying part deb, try putting an elastic band around your wrist, and when you find yourself worrying about something that may not happen, pull it back a little then let go so it gives you a little twang, this can be useful in changing the way one is thinking as the twanging of the band on your wrist, interupts what one is thinking at that time. Times have certainly changed more and more people are being diagnosed earlier, which does not undo the great wrong caused in the past, but reassures one it is unlikely to happen to anyone else in the future.. give the elastic band a go deb whenever you find yourself worrying about what may not even happen.
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#18 jangel


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Posted 26 October 2010 - 10:18 AM

RE the worrying part deb, try putting an elastic band around your wrist, and when you find yourself worrying about something that may not happen, pull it back a little then let go so it gives you a little twang, this can be useful in changing the way one is thinking as the twanging of the band on your wrist, interupts what one is thinking at that time.

Times have certainly changed more and more people are being diagnosed earlier, which does not undo the great wrong caused in the past, but reassures one it is unlikely to happen to anyone else in the future..

give the elastic band a go deb whenever you find yourself worrying about what may not even happen.

I have to try that one Lucky, thank you...I find myself borrowing sorrow, when I am trying to go to sleep....this has given me so many rounds with depression and insomnia...all my life. Last night even.

Great to have tips like this posted, which can actually re-train our thinking patterns. That is what we have to do. I know my sweet man does this as well. Gets lost in stincky thinking about the past, things that can never be changed.

Thank you all of you, for paying this forward and opening up your hearts to all.
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#19 DEBhasgrn


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Posted 26 October 2010 - 11:12 AM

Thank you LC, You know, I'm going to give the elastic a try.. It's going to be interesting.
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#20 Lucky_Cat


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Posted 26 October 2010 - 01:29 PM

Not sure about this, face to face it would come out the way it is intended, online it is so easy to be misunderstood, oh no.. please dont let me be misunderstood :dammit: I think the ulitmate trick to beating depression is to actually embrace it and understand it, do you know those people one meets in life? the intolerant, the cruel, the ones who look down on others through their own feelings of superiority, do you think these people have ever been depressed? not down in the dumps, actually depressed where it takes its toll on physical health too, sure there have been a few, but in general I think not, because it is what makes them, them! to them it would be a form of weakness so they don't tend to suffer because they are mentally engineered that way.. we all most know the someone who we avoid at all cost because of their extreme and uncaring ways. Now think of all the artists who paint, bringing colour, the musicians who bring both joy, sorry and energy, the actor who has you on the edge of your seat, the juggler, etc etc etc right down to the nice ol lady who serves behind the counter at the local food store.. lots of these wonderful beautiful people have suffered or have seen the suffering that depression can bring, so everyone who does have depression is in bloody good company.. would you trade your depression if it meant becoming a cold heartless ruthless bastard? embrace it and share it and when one gets control over it, remember it fondly because it is something that made you, you. BTW I think those who have not suffered and are cold hearted judgemental feckers.. are seriously ill..
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#21 artistickat


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Posted 27 October 2010 - 05:31 PM

do you know those people one meets in life? the intolerant, the cruel, the ones who look down on others through their own feelings of superiority, do you think these people have ever been depressed?

Yeah, LC and lots of those kind of folks are running for office here in the U.S. or working for Wall Street. I think their particular kind of mental illness is that they have no empathy and are completely self centered.
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#22 jangel


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Posted 27 October 2010 - 06:13 PM

Wonderful heart felt sharing going on here...thank you teddy, LC, artisitikcat...brilliant stuff. I think passionate people suffer most from this...because they are passionate, and feel things deeply. They feel pain, as well as joy of life. The two sides of the coin. I know my sweetie, because he has been in very deep trenches with this, is now cautious of all swings in emotion...because it could send him back. But life is a swinging pendalem, not just static....so we have to learn, us depressive personalities, that is it is okay to feel this, as long as we don't get stuck there...like depression is down, manic is up. I know that is a big fear of someone that deals with this...the getting "stuck" in that black hole. Peace
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#23 ditto257



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Posted 27 October 2010 - 09:31 PM

Hey all I think Jangel nailed by saying passionate people feel more than most..I am a 48 year old male and at times I hate to admit it but I am a very sensitive guy, Now people look at me and think that i should be a macho, sport loving he man..Well I am 6 foot, muscular build but I am repeat, a sensitive guy.I despise the way our society tries to stereotype us based on appearance or other superficial things rather than getting to know a person.We are judged unfairly...I had an very abusive childhood and have battled depression for my entire life. I have been suicidal several times over the years but thankfully got through things without following that path. If you or anyone finds yourself thinking that you dont use some of your most valued possesions and start giving them away, thinking I never use this anymore, slow down and think hard..My last suicidal bout , I started giving away things, I suppose I was preparing ( didnt know it at the time) only to wonder later where the hell are my things and then would remember giving them away.. I fell apart this spring and am currently on meds but they only help to a degree. I dwell in the past, but I am trying to work through some of the events that occurred in my childhood and trying to reach a point where I can look at them without being troubled by them...cannabis helps me tremendously, much more so than the doctor prescribed meds, but it can be overdone as mentioned previously.. Last winter I blew through almost a pound of weed in four months by myself, vaped myself into oblivion .. I didnt realize at the time that I was coming unglued but I will admit that at some point I realized excessive use was making me worse..Moderation is the key as with many things.. This is a site I found recently and a lot of it fits me to a T.. Most of my issues can be traced to my childhood and unfortunately one of the best cures for myself is to alleviate environmental stress. I am an old farm kid living in an ever growing city and each to his own, but city life and all the people and crap is too overwhelming most days. I have blown through so many jobs in the past three years I have lost track..I feel as though things are getting worse as I get older, but that could be because I have way less distractions in my life to keep my mind occupied.. I will just say one more thing and that is that I have become very attached to this site and while I may not come on daily, I think of you all as my friends, even if you are not on the list, great people you all are and so compassionate. I need you all in some way, I hope you understand. Take care everyone. www.merck.com/mmhe/sec07/ch105/ch105a.html

Edited by ditto257, 27 October 2010 - 09:33 PM.

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#24 Itinkso


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Posted 28 October 2010 - 04:03 AM

this thread makes my heart bleed......i want to thank each and every one of you who had the courage to post here...if this thread helps just ONE person.....then it's been worth it...and ALL of you should know...you ARE loved!
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#25 Third floor turtle

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Posted 28 October 2010 - 05:27 AM

Ahhhhhhhh the black dog teeth gnashing breaht hot and swift upon the neck claws ripping at the mind ...............evil beasty that it can be. weather i like it or is part of who i am and when i have my dark days i must remember to remind myself of 2 things that to me are a very important part of my ability to function as a healer with this afflictcion #1 just because its part of who i am as a person duz not meen that i have to like it #2 i am damaged but i am fixable thease thoughts seem to help me to find strength to continue to be a scorce of healing for others which in turn helps me heal me Hope this helps Turtle i have also had very good luck with accupuncture and herbs as well but cannabis has been my personal blessing in dealing with what i refer to as "the shit storm "
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