Struggling with depression, panic and anxiety.

  1. My wife is an RN, returning to work after several physical struggles. In the midst of these, she has been hit with depression and anxiety/panic, and it seems to be destroying her life. She's unable to go to work without having a panic attack and just gave up her full time job. At home, she just sits or sleeps all day, and feels bad because she can't seem to do anything else. She's currently taking meds, but nothing seems to help. Does it get better than this?
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  2. 39 Comments

  3. by   sharona97
    IMO Time does heal. i suffer from anxiety/depressive disorders and hardly left the house for 4 years. I was misdiagnosed and it effected my acute nursing care for my patients.

    Does she see a therapist? So important, I did for years to gett the frustration and anger out. How about a psychiatrist? Again , important for medical follow-up.

    My husband had a difficult time seeing the drastic change in me, yet he was very supportive, but became very burned out. She needs your support, yet you need to be able to stay strong, that's where the specialists come in. Don't try to handle all of this by yourself.

    Many times meds need changing, or she may bot be comfortable with her therapist. Communicate.

    It's been 7 years for me, and I know am feeling so much better. My circumstance dealt with a illness not treated. So the time factor may be a mute point, but it does get better.

    Good Luck, Chin Up, and God Bless

    Sharona
  4. by   markjrn
    Quote from sharona97
    IMO Time does heal. i suffer from anxiety/depressive disorders and hardly left the house for 4 years. I was misdiagnosed and it effected my acute nursing care for my patients.

    Does she see a therapist? So important, I did for years to gett the frustration and anger out. How about a psychiatrist? Again , important for medical follow-up.

    My husband had a difficult time seeing the drastic change in me, yet he was very supportive, but became very burned out. She needs your support, yet you need to be able to stay strong, that's where the specialists come in. Don't try to handle all of this by yourself.

    Many times meds need changing, or she may bot be comfortable with her therapist. Communicate.

    It's been 7 years for me, and I know am feeling so much better. My circumstance dealt with a illness not treated. So the time factor may be a mute point, but it does get better.

    Good Luck, Chin Up, and God Bless

    Sharona
    Thanks for your reply!

    She did have a psych, and just got a new one. She's starting therapy for the first time next week. She was told she has "trauma" issues. As for her meds, she's tried Lexapro and is now on Cymbalta and Geodon.

    I'm here for her, she's just very afraid that she'll lose her career. She's afraid that she'll never get better again. I don't know what to tell her because I'm not in her shoes.

    It's a tough situation.
  5. by   sharona97
    Time does heal. I am in the process of reaching my RN through the LPN to RN bridge program. I keep up with my CEU's, I've tried working out of the nursing field. Everyday is different in how I feel physically, emotionally and mentally. But I haven't given up inspite of the same fears, will I ever be able to work again (in nursing). I don't have the answer, just hope and most days the strength to focus on getting better. The concept of hope seems to stay with me and help with staying positive more than anything else.

    It is tough, I wish you and your wife the best treatment possible.

    Prayers,

    Sharona
  6. by   markjrn
    Thank you. I wish you the best.
  7. by   DutchgirlRN
    I know it's very difficult to find a low stress job in nursing but perhaps she should try a different area of nursing than what she is used to.

    If shrink # 1 or 2 doesn't work, try yet another, same with the meds. Weekly talk therapy in the beginning can do wonders. Best of Luck in a difficult situation.

    Get her here onto allnurses...the best free therapy in the world.

    P.S. IMO: I don't think the disability thread is the appropriate. Depression/Anxiety being a chemical imbalance is no different than having diabetes in terms of an illness and IMO is not or doesn't have to be a disability. A vast majority of us have faced the same problems (I'm living/surving proof myself) and there are threads galore out here on all nurses. Perhaps a moderator can point you in the right direction.
    Last edit by DutchgirlRN on Oct 20, '07
  8. by   SuesquatchRN
    Quote from DutchgirlRN
    Get her here onto allnurses...the best free therapy in the world.
    :yeahthat:

    Lots of good people here.

    I'm going to be buried with a vial of Xanax and my SSRI du jour clenched in my sweaty little hand.

    Yes, there is life after paralyzing depression and anxiety.
  9. by   DutchgirlRN
    Quote from Suesquatch
    :yeahthat:

    Lots of good people here.

    I'm going to be buried with a vial of Xanax and my SSRI du jour clenched in my sweaty little hand.

    Yes, there is life after paralyzing depression and anxiety.
    :yeahthat:






    Just don't try the Generic!
    Last edit by sirI on Oct 20, '07 : Reason: TOS
  10. by   SuesquatchRN
    HAH!

    The generic sertraline was fine for me, but I'm now on Lexapro. Much more helpful, to me, with anxiety.
  11. by   Sabby_NC
    Quote from markjrn
    My wife is an RN, returning to work after several physical struggles. In the midst of these, she has been hit with depression and anxiety/panic, and it seems to be destroying her life. She's unable to go to work without having a panic attack and just gave up her full time job. At home, she just sits or sleeps all day, and feels bad because she can't seem to do anything else. She's currently taking meds, but nothing seems to help. Does it get better than this?
    Hang in there mate it does get better but this will be a time thing. Be supportive as you are and give her time and space.
    Encourage her daily over and over again.
    I agree with the other posters and yes get her onto allnurses that will be very theraputic. At least she is guaranteed giggles with this mottley crew

    I pray comfort and healing for your dear wife and huge hugs for you!
  12. by   DutchgirlRN
    Quote from Suesquatch
    HAH!

    The generic sertraline was fine for me, but I'm now on Lexapro. Much more helpful, to me, with anxiety.
    It was almost the death of me! I reported it to the FDA and was informed that a considerable amount of people had reported a similar experience and that generic sertraline is currently under investigation.

    Lexapro didn't work for my dd or ds, they're on Effexor, Lexapro works great for dd. Goes to show you 2 things. We're all on an antidepressant and what works for one doesn't necessarily work for everyone. Glad you found something that works for you. I've been on Zoloft about 8+ years and very happily so.



    Now back to our regularly scheduled thread....!
  13. by   sharona97
    Quote from DutchgirlRN
    I know it's very difficult to find a low stress job in nursing but perhaps she should try a different area of nursing than what she is used to.

    If shrink # 1 or 2 doesn't work, try yet another, same with the meds. Weekly talk therapy in the beginning can do wonders. Best of Luck in a difficult situation.

    Get her here onto allnurses...the best free therapy in the world.

    P.S. IMO: I don't think the disability thread is the appropriate. Depression/Anxiety being a chemical imbalance is no different than having diabetes in terms of an illness and IMO is not or doesn't have to be a disability. A vast majority of us have faced the same problems (I'm living/surving proof myself) and there are threads galore out here on all nurses. Perhaps a moderator can point you in the right direction.
    I agree that a panic/anxiety/depression/psychotic disorder doesn't have to be a disability; unfortunetly, it is a crippling disability to many. Diabetes is a known diagnosis, where panic/anxiety/depression/physchosis does not always have clear cut origins. It takes work to discover that origin and work to defeat the beast. I agree depression is everywhere, not just in the medical field, but I certainly woulnd't want people not to post because one might think it's not a dibilitating disease...IMO that would only add to the shame that guilts many who are struggling with disorders of this kind. I personally find it healing to read comforting posts and look at information pasted on posts. I agree have your wife join in this "non-threatening" "non-shameful" environment and as an added plus get some laugh therapy in there too. Anyone else?
  14. by   DutchgirlRN
    Quote from sharona97
    I certainly woulnd't want people not to post because one might think it's not a dibilitating disease...IMO that would only add to the shame that guilts many who are struggling with disorders of this kind. I personally find it healing to read comforting posts and look at information pasted on posts. I agree have your wife join in this "non-threatening" "non-shameful" environment and as an added plus get some laugh therapy in there too. Anyone else?
    I would never advocate someone not posting because I don't think it's a debilitating disease. It definately can be disabling but it is not a disability IMO.

    I "suffered" and I do mean "suffered" crippling depression/anxiety/panic for years. I missed 3 years of high school and had to have a homebound teacher. It is a chemical imbalance that needs to be treated chemically and with talk therapy. I also said IMHO. To each his own. There is loads of info on allnurse re: depression/anxiety/panic and it can be very beneficial to know you are not alone. I never knew that because as a teenager in the 70's we didn't discuss mental illness and I was the crazy person in the family who no one could understand. "Just snap out of it girl", we didn't have SSRI's, my parents certainly were not going to take me to a psychiatrist. What a shameful thing that would be to take your daughter to a shrink. My friends all deserted me because there was something wrong with me.

    Does anyone know what courage it took for me to go back to school my Junior year, stay in school and graduate with those same friends. It wasn't easy but I know I'm a stronger and better person for having done it and I did it totally chemical free. As an educated adult who can now make my own decisions, I take advantage of SSRI's and talk therapy. It has changed my life dramatically. I did fairy well from age 16-35 but I've been dynamite since officially diagnosed with major depression and anxiety disorder at age 35. I'm now 52 y/o and happily celebrating the fact that I am not crazy after all!
    Last edit by DutchgirlRN on Oct 20, '07

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