Last reply 7 years ago
MS and depression

After chatting with some other MSers here, I thought it a good idea to share my story. The aim being to show that there is help out there and you shouldn’t be afraid to ask for it.

In the last few months, I have been plagued by thoughts of suicide. Now this isn’t the norm for me. I am generally a really happy go lucky guy. The life and soul of the party. Always cracking jokes, always with a kind word and help for others.

These thoughts though kept coming over me in waves. sometimes lasting a few days at a time. I’d even gone as far as getting all my sharp knives out of the drawers and lining them up in front of me, trying to choose the right one to do the deed.
This was all done in a veil of tears, as i was wracked with pain and anguish. Feeling life was worthless, what with all the pain and discomfort. Being stuck indoors for days at a time, unable to face going out, but also unable to get out due to relapse.
Of course, I didn’t go through with it. Instead, I phoned a crisis helpline number which had been supplied to me.

You see, I knew what was happening to me. I had recognised the symptoms a few days before. The build up to the desperate state that I was in.
How?
Well, I’ve dealt with it before. I’d even been sectioned for my own safety, in a mental health hospital. They were fantastically kind and helpful. I got counselling, medicinal help and plenty of back-up. Without which I may well not have survived at that time.

So this time, talking to the crisis helpline, helped me become a little more rational thinking at that important time, calming me enough to gain enough strength to struggle through the night.
The next day, I immediately sought help from my GP and was referred for mental health support. The GP herself, could not have been more supportive, in fact she was fantastic. Ok, I was a wreck, but she helped me by discussing my thoughts and feelings.

So, what can any of you take from this?

Well if you ever feel that things are getting too much for you, I hope that you can remember this, that these thoughts are not necessarily what your true self is feeling, rather they are a sign that you may be in the throws of a bout of depression (reactive or clinical depression).

There is no shame in having this type of problem. It is exceptionally common, especially for us MSers. Don’t feel guilty about needing help, after all, that is what the mental health workers are there for.

I myself have just started a new course of medication to help me and I’m feeling very positive. I’ve also taken great heart in the support that other members here provide to each and everyone that they can.

Ok, my ramble is over, except to say, don’t suffer alone, get help! If you ever need to chat about things or need advice, we’re here for you.

C.A.L.L.HELPLINE number is 0800 132 737

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xander
7 years ago

Thanks for sharing this m8 it can’t have been easy 🙂
Being new to all things ms related and only having being diagnosed a matter of weeks my emotions have been all over the place and it’s good to know there is help out there 😉


markms
7 years ago

WOW pete glad to see your ok m8 that was amazing and what your going through only you know again wow hates off to you glad your still here glad your felling a little better that must of been so hard to say.


bubblesgalore
7 years ago

well done for sharing this. i do think its important that we highlight our highs and lows. i value the support on this site. i too am pleased that there is help out there, as sometimes i feel there is nobody to turn to… its the same old story that the closest around me take me on face value and im smiling and bright, but on occasions there are sad times and nobody sees that side. this condition is a forever thing and its just hard to open up to people around me as to be honest they just dont get it. i will make note of that number.. its a just incase thing… of course… thank you again for sharing xxx


vixr
7 years ago

@pottypete, thank you for sharing your story and for being so honest. I, too, have had mental health problems in the past and have been on antidepressants for over 20 years. 2 weeks ago I was going through a really bad patch, I’m still finding it difficult to come to terms with having MS, and started to self harm, which is something I haven’t done for over 3 years. Thankfully I came to my senses before I did any real damage, but it’s just as well it’s winter and long sleeves cover everything up!

All we can do is take it one day at a time, and ask for help when we need it. Glad you’re doing better @pottypete, sending you big hugs! xx


mererid
7 years ago

@pottypete Thank you for sharing. I think it’s amazing that you were able to look objectively at yourself and at what you were doing when you were at your lowest point and that you recognised depression for the invasive trickery that it is. I think this is the hardest thing of all to do because when depression takes over, you totally forget what it feels like to be normal/happy. It becomes the norm. It’s not. It’s also good to hear that being sectioned was actually helpful and not so much ‘One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest’ as people might think, and that picking up the phone is always an option. So glad that you’re feeling positive about your new meds, Pottypete. And that you’re still here to tell the tale and help others. Much respect. Mer x


pottypete
7 years ago

With all honesty, if my suffering can help someone else defeat their demons, then my suffering has not been in vain. We are all in this together folks. Let us support each other!


sunsetlily
7 years ago

Thank you for sharing sir. That is very brave of you.


marjolie
7 years ago

well done @pottypete, that’s such a horrible place to be, especially selecting the knives and thinking seriously about which one to choose. Lots of us have been to this place myself included, its a black-hole like no other. (I’ve not quite left that dark place but I’ll be damned if I’ll carve myself up like a halloween pumpkin again any time soon.) I’m so happy that you’re getting through this with help you’ve found, help does just what it does on the tin with no shame or stigma attached to asking for it, and you’re a very brave man; not only for posting this and being so open about it, but for putting the knives aside and contacting someone before, like many of us here, we find we’re relegate to the long-sleeved clothing departments (‘and so the fuck what?’ I say to this, battlescars are found in more places than a battlefield, that’s for damn sure). I’m so happy to read this outcome, not so much the content, but it’s admirable how you’re dealing with it.
Much love, a cuddle, and power to you soldier
We’ll all march with you xx


pottypete
7 years ago

@marjolie Swoon! xxx


pottypete
7 years ago

@vixr Hugs to you too. I hope you manage to stop the self harming. That’s something my daughter used to do as well, when she was depressed. Thankfully she got through it eventually. Isn’t it strange what our minds make us do?


chris75
7 years ago

Really good post @pottypete It’s another way to show that ‘people like us’ understand a lot more than just balance issues. And that we have a place to turn, and people to talk to. 😀


cedelle
7 years ago

thanks @pottypete, i had a horrendous relapse last year which was my awful. not to the point that i wanted to commit suicide… but i prayed that when i went to sleep.. i wouldnt wake up. i didnt want to live it any more. im through that now, thankfully, and im pleased your able to help yourself too 🙂 thats great news xx


kerrylousie
7 years ago

@pottypete i applaude you sir for your honesty and advice and am pleased you are ok. I too went through a similar time before i was diagnosed and luckily shouted loud enough to be seen by a councillor, who, i must admit, was absolutely fantastic with helping me see for myself the good things and people in my life and i too would fully support anyone who asks for help as these professionals are worth their weight in gold xx *hugs to all*

Thanks for sharing that mate. It must have been a very difficult time for you and took a lot of courage to overcome it.

I myself am seeing the MS nurse tomorrow for my annual appointment and i’m gonna ask about CBT. I’ve noticed lately the ‘have a laugh, fairly relaxed, funny’ Mark has gone. Some kind of anxiety has kicked in and i need to get to the bottom of it.

This condition can play havoc with us can’t it. The unknown!!

Hope you are starting to feel better now and are improving everyday.
Take care


pottypete
7 years ago

Thanks for all the good wishes. The battle goes on, but it goes well, so far. As it does for all of us.


sag70
7 years ago

Inspirational piece of writing @pottypete, I’ve never understood how anyone could ever contemplate knocking on the Pearly Gates sooner than needed until MS kicked in and depression opened it’s door.

I’m a copper and have seen and experienced more than anyone should ever have to which probably helped me to a degree in overcoming seriously bad thoughts.

It also didn’t help that the new love of my life for 2 years decided she was better off elsewhere :-/

Fortunately, work kept a good eye on me after diagnosis, had visits from the Chaplain and psych who guided me in the right direction along with the MS society and my gorgeous daughters and family.

I’ve had some very strong words with my/our maker and the Chaplain said “it’s OK, he can handle it”. There you go, now you know who to aim your anger at 🙂

When you’re down, open your eyes to life. This may seem cruel but there’s always somebody else worse off than you thinking “I wish I had that instead of whatever”.

I remember sitting outside the hospital after finding out my super dooper Immune system was so effective, that it turned on itself to see a young male plodding along with a white cane and carer. Poor bloke was deaf and blind and in a very insensitive and uncaring way, It made me feel better that I wasn’t him :-/

Please don’t hate me for that….


pottypete
7 years ago

@sag70 Thanks for the appreciation.

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