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Purely based on personal experience


goose
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I am talking here on a purely personal level, of my own experience and trying to understand what is going on with me.

I feel sometimes that I am finding comfort in my depression, that as bad as it is, it is preferable to the uncertainty and huge fear of change. It has become so familiar to me, maybe I am resisting my chance to get better.

I would love to hear what the experts think, is it a known trait in some people with depression ? Opinions from others welcome also.

I have been having cbt for the past 6 months now and have made some considerable changes to my thinking, I have a way to go yet.

What do you think?.

Goose

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The short and easy answer is, yes. It is possible to be stuck in your condition. You could be comfortable with the familiar, fearful of change or just feel like that's who you are, "Man with Depression."

Medically speaking, there are varying degrees of mentality with illness. Imagine that 2 men have lung cancer and according to medical documents, they should expect the same outcome. Both men have supportive families but are distressed by the news.

Man One carries on with his daily activities to the best of his ability. Sometimes he needs an extra nap or misses work, but he's really just doing the best he can. People keep telling him to slow down and rest a little.

Man Two starts getting help from everywhere. He arranges for help with his bath, cooking, driving and he takes an extended leave from work to get better. People are telling him that he should try to maintain his strength and stamina.

Six months after treatment, Man One is not doing as well as Man Two. He needs naps every day, he retired from work and has someone to do his shopping and chores because he just can't keep up with it all. Meanwhile, Man Two is back to work and normal activity. Man One began to identify himself as ill. Just like when you see your 5th grade teacher getting groceries, she is "Mrs. Teacher". Man One has become "Man with Illness".

It could easily have happened to either man and is largely uncontrollable. Illness can become an identity, a lifestyle or routine. Luckily, you have noticed that you may be stuck and can work to defeat that little trick of the brain.

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I think I understand where you're coming from goose. I think it's not exactly that you're afraid of change or that you don't want to feel or get better but maybe it's a fear of letting your guard down. Being depressed it's sort of like you're not expecting anything so you can't get hurt. If you are feeling better it's almost like you don't trust it, you don't know how long it will last. At least being depressed you know what to expect. I know what I'm trying to say, but it's probably coming out all wrong.

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You have hit the nail on the head Smallstar.

What if the new changed life is not better, then there is no hope left. If the new me is not happy I have nowhere to go only down.

I hate, hate, hate the way the depression makes me feel and think.

I do find the cbt very challenging, I am trying to change the way I have thought for the past 46 years.

Goose

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Guest ASchwartz

Goose,

I agree that smallstar hit the head on the old nail!!

So, that means that you have to remember that therapy, of any kind or type, is a slow and gradual process. Keep working at it and be patient with youself. Change is indeed very scary.

Allan:)

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When you're not depressed, the answer is obvious: if the "new changed life" isn't better, you try to change something else about it, until it is.

It's just that when something doesn't go well, the depression chimes in, that "it will never be better", and that's just not true. If you're never allowed to try and fail, well, then the only alternatives are always to succeed, or never to try.

How about, instead of trying to change your thought habits of 46 years, just try to change what you thought yesterday? :-) Maybe it won't seem like such a hard job.

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That sounds more do-able Malign.

46 years of negative thoughts seems a mountain to climb.

The human mind plays such tricks on us, I like to be logic about things but my irrational self when depressed can not think that way.

Don't think I am making much sense lately, have decided to give up on making sense, it hasn't done me any good in the past, I'm rambling I know and I don't apologize for it because, well just because I'm weary. When doing thing right and proper does not bring joy maybe being off the wall and incoherent might.

Goose

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I can relate to this on some level. Not so much with depression, but I've been having some difficulty adjusting to having a higher sense of self-worth. I think I may have even tried to self-destruct once or twice. One wants to grasp onto to what one is familiar with. Uncertainty can be frightening, but positive change can also be life-changing. Hang in there, Goose. I hope things get better for you real soon.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I often remember a quote by Kahlil Gibran in the Prophet - it sort of goes 'beware of comfort, it comes into your home a guest and often becomes the master'.

I often fear that I will not be able to cope with the change, from an emotional standpoint. I have been through so many bouts of depression now that I don't trust my capacity to handle things long term so I fear going into it ... I intentionally slowed down my life a few years back because I was no longer able to function, but now it's so slowed down I'm hardly moving.....:) And I have started seeing myself that way... thanks for the reminder that this is unhealthy thinking...

Edited by Symora
typo
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