“I should have control over my depression”

OliveJewel

MyPTSD Pro
1. I’m not trying hard enough to cope with the onset of depression because I’m lazy therefore I have no right to complain when it sets in.
2. One of the worst things I could to do is burden anyone because of my poor decision making.
3. When I get out of this and feel better I hope it never happens again.

1. Judgment blocking agency
2. Judgment blocking relationship
3. You are alive so it will, delusional thought

result: kept in captive victim mental status—narcissistic thoughts ensue; survival strategy to avoid… intimacy??? Grief???
 

Sideways

Moderator
kept in captive victim mental status
Thinking patterns are distorted by depression. They're the effect, not the cause.

Are you able to acknowledge that you have these recurrent thoughts, and instead of judging yourself for having them, and having depression (and it's effects, like depressed thoughts), acknowledge that these are the product of the illness?

As in: Depression is causing me to think this way. So, the thoughts themselves don't actually tell me anything about myself, except that I am depressed...

Being able to recognise recurring thought patterns is one of the ways I can identify a depressed mood state in myself. Because, the thoughts are the same, or very similar, each time. Whether they are true or not? Is, frustratingly, something I'm less able to judge the more they recur, because I'm depressed.
 

OliveJewel

MyPTSD Pro
Thinking patterns are distorted by depression. They're the effect, not the cause.

This makes sense. My mind does not want to receive this information but I see it. I know what those words mean. I am skeptical and resistant but that’s a protector part who is very invested in the system of rules. Holding onto this for when I’m able to return. Writing it down in my paper journal.

As I wrote it down with a marker I could feel the anger in a part of me. I could feel the Confuser stepping in and a mocking voice saying the whole thing sarcastically.

That reminds me about how when I am in the thick of blocking my emotions a symptom I get is where every thought or sound I hear is passed through a “mocking filter”—where it’s as if everything that exists is behaving sarcastically—the music on the radio, the sounds of cars outside, every thought put into words. It is surreal, but not frightening. It goes away if another human shows up or if I move around in my space a lot or go outside. The effect is not fear, more disheartening, like, “Oh geez, not this again.” I never talked about it because it’s not a burden but I never made the connection between that and a depressed state until now.

I am fairly certain that I see a direct connection between blocking my emotions and this mild condition of my brain mocking the entire world—it’s more like the entire world mocking me because there’s a sense that every sound and thought has a joker smile toward me, but I recognize it as unreal. Regardless, I see the connection with blocking my emotions—this is something my brain comes up with, maybe to mirror what is happening inside. If I’m not allowing emotions, why or how could I trust my senses if they are unable to check in with emotions—so they guess there must be an extreme reason why emotions aren’t allowed—like maybe they are not to be trusted because they aren’t picking up on mocking.

That was an uncomfortable situation when I was a child. When I was expecting that my loved ones were using honest emotional signals but they were sarcastic and mocking but I couldn’t tell. In my toxic family, being the one who was sarcastic and mocking while others couldn’t tell was rewarded with power. So maybe my mind is hyper sensitive and triggered to look for mocking when my emotions are blocked, even going so far as to invent mocking to fit the experience of blocked emotions.

I never made that connection before and I think it’s helpful.

“Distorted thoughts are the effect [of your illness], not the cause.” Still those plain words don’t have a place to land, but I can keep them near me.

recurring thought patterns is one of the ways I can identify a depressed mood state in myself. Because, the thoughts are the same, or very similar, each time

I was picking up on this in my diary. The thought I have experienced before and this time at the onset of the depressive episode is an overwhelming sensation of missing T in a way that feels very young closely tied to a sense of judgment at the intensity of the feeling and a sense of disgust toward myself.

I mean when I feel good I miss T but not in an overwhelming way, just a light and charming way. This is like a sudden clutching sensation in my throat and a persistent needling at my heart. Closely followed with a need to isolate based on shame and distrust. Well, I can see that and describe it in a way I never have before. I do not feel calmer or better about the situation but I do feel like I see a pattern. A few patterns.

Things that are helpful for me to know that I am depressed (didn’t realize that identifying when I am depressed is helpful in case I want to try coping, but I do see that now too.)
1) strong feeling of missing T from the point of view of my little (this is the trigger that sets off a ricochet of protector type behavior such as)
2) strong feeling of needing to hide (more than normal)
3) strong feeling of disgust
4) a willingness to block emotional connection
5) which leads to coping for that, such as drinking, taking too much MMJ, self-harming behaviors, mild psychosis

So this is just for identification of a depressive episode. Coping with said episode is a whole other issue which I don’t want to go into. I’m guessing that there’s a protector part trying to block me from knowing when I’m depressed. Why? Because I was depressed for such extended periods of time in my life that thinking it was “temporary” wouldn’t have made sense to my system.

I know now that it’s temporary because of my felt experience but I still have surprisingly little grasp on it. Probably because my method has always been to hunker down until I get exhausted with being exhausted or something distracts me long enough (kids, work) so that I’m able to move past it. Then I act like it never happened and that it will never happen again.

My god writing it all out kind of scares me for how much work I have to do (protector and Confuser again working together to keep me from thinking about it.)

Back to the point. First step, notice my thoughts. Second step, look for thought patterns to indicate whether depressive episode has settled into brain. Do not judge. (Part of me wants to have a good laugh at that but I know that’s not only possible but necessary.). If patterns indicate depression has started then switch to coping strategies flow chart (to be determined) for depressive symptoms.
 

PreciousChild

MyPTSD Pro
1. I’m not trying hard enough to cope with the onset of depression because I’m lazy therefore I have no right to complain when it sets in.
2. One of the worst things I could to do is burden anyone because of my poor decision making.
3. When I get out of this and feel better I hope it never happens again.

1. Judgment blocking agency
2. Judgment blocking relationship
3. You are alive so it will, delusional thought

result: kept in captive victim mental status—narcissistic thoughts ensue; survival strategy to avoid… intimacy??? Grief???
I've been depressed before, but only once was I so depressed that I felt it was clinical and accepted medication for it. For me, the experience was primarily "energetic" and not cognitive, and it felt as though I was fighting the tide. I had no chance of winning. I appreciate your thoughts on the thread about victimhood, etc. but I wanted to clarify that in the articles about victimhood, the authors make a distinction between the real effects of being victimized and co-opting victimhood as an identity. I think depression is a direct result of trauma and cptsd even if it is felt years later. If it is narcissistic, then I think it's a justified one - victims deserve attention, understanding and nurturing until they are better. It sounds to me that there is self-blame in your thinking about your depression, but I think that is as unhelpful as blaming a child for his abuse.

In reading your second post, it sounds to me that I would describe the depressive episodes as being triggered, especially when you mention how much you miss your T when it happens. I've talked to my T about the relationship between cognitive approaches and dealing with trauma and have read the research. I think cognitive approaches have a limited effect on the affective dimensions of ptsd. I've read lots of good strategies that people use here in addressing the overwhelming experience of getting hjiacked by ptsd - grounding techniques, etc. Over the years, I've been getting triggered less and less, which I'm grateful for. But my approach to dealing with it in the last several years has been to embrace it as an opportunity to reparent myself. I found it nearly impossible to genuinely confront and change patterns when I was not triggered. So when I did become triggered, I actually had something to look forward to. Van der Kolk has a lot of strategies and thoughts in Body Keeps the Score about reparenting oneself and releasing trauma from the body. I feel strongly that using such techniques have allowed me to resolve some hurts in a genuine way. I think that the repetitive nature of ptsd triggers has to do with the suppressed trauma resurfacing in order to find resolution, and I personally don't think it can be addressed by using only cognitive approaches.
 

OliveJewel

MyPTSD Pro
it felt as though I was fighting the tide.
I feel this
self-blame…is as unhelpful as blaming a child for his abuse.
Agree. I see it as mental/thought static
opportunity to reparent myself. I
Yes, I feel this as a surfacing of my inner baby and it threatens some of my parts
nearly impossible to genuinely confront and change patterns when I was not triggered.
Yes. I noticed the same. Cognitive is more comfortable but going through the attachment re-patterning means willingly walking through grief and pain, which come from triggers.
 

PreciousChild

MyPTSD Pro
I feel this

Agree. I see it as mental/thought static

Yes, I feel this as a surfacing of my inner baby and it threatens some of my parts

Yes. I noticed the same. Cognitive is more comfortable but going through the attachment re-patterning means willingly walking through grief and pain, which come from triggers.
I wanted to clarify that I had other dissociative responses to my trauma, but clinical depression was just the one time. Yeah, when I put the work in, every time I put the pieces back together, more parts cohere in the whole. I hope you're able to work through your current mental state for the better.
 
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