Reply To: Living with ADHD & Depression-will I ever feel happy?

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mary.griffin
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You are NOT alone. Definitely find a doctor that understands depression and ADD / ADHD. Track any potential triggers. And practice taking yourself out of the situation when you feel your brain beating up on you. If someone you loved did whatever it is that you’re regretting, would you still be yelling at them years later? Probably not. Then why are you so hard on yourself? My husband is going through the same issues. His reasons are that he doesn’t feel as smart as everyone else knows he is so he feels like a fake and thinks eventually everyone else will figure it out and not want him around. He really is brilliant, though, and it takes appealing to his analytical brain to get him to realize the facts counter the side of his brain that keeps kicking him and trying to steal his happiness. He’s currently on welbutrin and has just finally started seeing a counselor to help give him better tools to fight the negative thoughts that threaten to take over and pull him back down into that seemingly bottomless pit of despair called depression. Like I told him, I’ve been there myself, and managed to get out by actively bringing up positive things about myself and acknowledging when I was tearing myself down and forcibly stopping myself. It may sound silly to have an argument with your own brain, but when you have add, your brain works through many channels in multiple directions at one time. If you ignore one negative input long enough it can wear away at your defenses and it builds that neural pathway and strengthens it over time and you have to actively build other positive pathways and strengthen them instead. You should watch “What the Bleep Do We Know?” It points out some interesting stuff about brain chemistry and how we become addicted to certain emotions because of the chemicals that get released in our brains. And remember sometimes you have to act your way into a new way of thinking because you can’t always think your way into a new way of acting. I’ve been there and this is what helped me. Recognize when you’re beating yourself up. Acknowledge that you may have made a mistake or have a regret, but learn to be your own advocate, too? Give yourself permission to let it go and forgive yourself as you would a loved one who did whatever it is you regret. Write down any transgressions you regret. Then forgive yourself for each one. Make a list of any fears and then pros and cons of potential consequences of those fears coming to pass. Make a plan for each one just in case but learn to accept that about 90% of things we worry about never happen and sometimes the best things in life come from unexpected adventures when things don’t go according to plan. Also you may want to try changing your perspective. Sometimes the 5 minute delay caused by not finding your keys may be just long enough to keep you from being in a 7 car pileup on the way to work. You never know when a major inconvenience is a blessing in disguise. Also a gratitude journal where you focus for 15 minutes a day reflecting on 3 good things that happened that day. And never underestimate the power of human connection. A hug or even just someone who understands holding your hand even though they know that they don’t have the words, can be really helpful to boosting your endorphins. Anyway, these are some things that have helped me tremendously and are starting to help my husband and I hope they might help you, too. Good luck!

  • This reply was modified 3 years, 4 months ago by mary.griffin.