How do you deal with anxiety and depression???

Christina - posted on 11/10/2010 ( 14 moms have responded )

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I have been dealing with anxiety and depression for as long as I can remember. I just had my sixth child and the anxiety has gotten worse. I find myself not wanting to go to the grocery store because I think people can tell that I am not normal. Sometimes it will hit me when I am on my way somewhere and I have to drive around for a while before I actually get there. I am not sure what to do about this. I feel like if I go to someone to talk about it, they will declare me unfit and take my kids away. I struggle everyday to be a good mom and it never seems to be good enough. What do I do???? I need help!!

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Carla - posted on 11/11/2010

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Christina, you just answered your question in your last post. You are suffering from the same syndrome that MANY women suffer from the 'I-can-bring-home-the-bacon,-fry-it-up-in-the-pan,-and-never-let-him-forget-he's-a-man. That was a jingle from a cologne back in my day. There was this beautiful, beautifully-dressed woman dancing in from work, house spotless, making an exotic dinner, and blowing kisses to her husband. This is total and complete suicide to women! We believed that commercial, and started the stress-mode that causes heart attacks, strokes, depression, anxiety and a myriad of other maladies.

I, too, felt that if I couldn't be 100% perfect, I was a failure, there was no in-between ground. I made my life and my familes miserable. I ended up with severe depression, anxiety that paralyzed me, fibro-myalgia, chronic fatigue, chronic tendonitis, arthritis, carpal tunnel, and the list goes on and on. Most of this was caused by the stress of trying to be little Miss Perfect! Being forced to go on Social Security Disability has been a big come-down for me, but it has caused me to take a frank, honest look at what I was doing to myself! After a LOT of meds, which only made me dingy, I was no better. The Lord started talking to me about how I was my own worst enemy. I started calming down, if we were having people over, I didn't start running through the house like a wild woman, cleaning an already-clean house and sending my poor hubby to the store for a feast to prepare! If people can't take a little dust, don't come over! I have good days, and I have rotten days. If you come on a good day, it might be clean. If it's a rotten day, take your chances ;) No one has died of the dirt yet.

We HAVE to understand our limitations and work within them. Goodness, honey, you have 6 kids, one a fussy baby, and working! Cut yourself some slack! You may find out that people will be more relaxed around you when you aren't flyin' around being Martha Stewart. I am reminded of Mary and Martha when Jesus came to eat. Martha was out in the kitchen, sweatin' over making just the right food to impress the guys. Mary was in listening to Jesus. Martha said 'Jesus, make Mary come help me!' Jesus said, 'Martha, you worry too much! Mary has chosen the good thing (Me), and I will NOT take that away from her! Now, come in and listen for a while. We can have cafeteria-style dinner!' (My translation)

God bless, darling, calm down, seek God, and see yourself bloom!

Bobbie - posted on 11/11/2010

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You are a good mom that old devil is really beaten you up rebuke him in the name of Jesus love ya

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Joslyn - posted on 11/13/2010

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I used to suffer TERRIBLY from anxiety. I was afraid of losing my mind. I tried every natural treatment available, i was seeing a very well known doctor who specialized in nutritional medicine. I detoxed, cut out everything unhealthy from my diet. Treated my thyroid, tried natural anti anxiety meds. This was all with marginal results, although definitely some progress. I prayed ALOT. I had to finally realize that I could not control my panicky feelings and needed medication. I was FINALLY able to feel normal again. Is it unhealthy? Probably I have had some side effects and I wish I did not have to take something I believe is somewhat toxic, but my mental health is non-negotiable when raising a child.

Elizabeth - posted on 11/11/2010

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Jennifer - LOL
Christina - We'll ALL keep praying for you!
Rebecca - I'm sorry for allowing myself to get drawn into an argument. I still don't agree, but I thank you for caring enough to share your passion with us.

Jennifer - posted on 11/11/2010

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Lord, I lift up my sister Christina to You. I ask that You comfort her anxious heart and allow healing of the wounds that cause it. Remind my dear sister that she is fearfully and wonderfully made by You. That it doesn't matter what other people think of her, it matters what You think. Father reach a hand to her and guide her to a place of peace so that she can continue to be a wonderful mom. Lord, place in her life women she can talk to and people she can reach out to in her times of need. Father, also I ask that You keep Your presence here and keep us all seeking Your perfect will. Keep us in Your arms that we may all uplift and be blessings in your name. Reminding us to respect each other as yet another of Your children. In Your Son's Holy and Righteous Name Jesus, Amen.


I'd like to add...... DING DING ~Elizabeth and Rebecca - Back to your corners.. LOL

Rebecca - posted on 11/10/2010

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Elizabeth, I could debate about this, but I won't. This is not what the thread was intended for.
I watched my mother turn into what looked like a holocaust victim after being poisoned to death by chemo.
She was doing better on natural treatments, but could no longer afford them.
Back to the topic at hand...

Elizabeth - posted on 11/10/2010

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Rebecca - I understand your concerns. I don't immunize my kids. That's another touchy subject. All I am trying to get across is, don't over-scriptualize your medical care. My cousin is in remission from leukemia because of chemo. Can God heal? YES!!!!! But, he often does so through medical intervention. For any drug, straight from the field or from a pharmacy, my only point is - do your homework! Digitalis is a potent and poisonous natural drug, but when processed by someone who knows what they're doing (what you could call a pharmacist), it can save a person's life. Your article neglects to acknowledge that we live in a fallen world with all the frailties of the flesh. Our bodies are fearfully and wonderfully made, and yet, they can't always "heal themselves". "The healthiest people you know don't take drugs!" is a completely misleading statement! Healthy people don't need them. Do the research, pray, and don't listen to the fear-mongers on either side. Thank God for the medical advances that have been made, whether surgical, pharmeceutical or "natural". In essentials, unity, in non-essentials, liberty, in all things, charity (love). I do believe those verses were taken out of context (yes, I looked them up). People throughout the ages have been burned for witchcraft (even Christians) because they had a knowledge of how to use the plants God created. Now that same charge is being laid at the doors (deservedly or not) of pharmacies. This is an over-simplification, and an injustice to those whose lives depend on the medical profession. I take synthetic thyroid hormone because my body decided that my thyroid is a foreign invader. The only remedy for my type of hypothyroidism (even according to the homeopaths) is to replace the hormones that my body no longer makes. For hundreds of years, that involved not a plant or food or lifestyle remedy, but the ground thyroid of a sheep or pig. The pharmaceutical companies have found a way to synthesize the hormone in the lab, eliminating the need to kill animals just to keep me alive. I might actually feel better on the "natural" thyroid (I'm looking into it), but which process sounds more like witchcraft? By all means - try the natural remedies! However, please don't call my medical treatment a sin because it was processed in a lab instead of someone's kitchen.

Rebecca - posted on 11/10/2010

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Elizabeth, I know drugs are a touchy subject, but I believe in telling people what I have learned from lots of research. Natural health is one of my passions. People don't understand the poison they are putting in their bodies. If you know of a cure for someone, I believe it is wrong to keep that from them, just as we know the cure for sin and should share the gospel. It is ultimately between them and the Lord though.

Here is an article covering pharmaceuticals etc., the Bible verses are listed in it.
http://www.godshealingword.org/Prescript...

Christina - posted on 11/10/2010

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I really appreciate all the helpful comments so far. I do tend to be the type that wants everything to be perfect and when it is not, the stress sets in and I become someone else. I never knew that I could be this way. The depression and anxiety set in when I had my last baby on May 9 of this year (mother's day). She is different from my other kids in that she is not calm and laid back at all. I also work a part-time job in the evenings and on weekends which only adds to the stress. I struggle with finding that balance. I am also active in my church and try to help with every activity. I find it hard to not be there for everyone. I guess I am trying too hard and probably making things more complicated than they have to be. I have a wonderful family and support system but nothing seems to help ease my mind. Please keep sending the comments and suggestions and most of all the prayers!! Thanks!!

Elizabeth - posted on 11/10/2010

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Most pharmaceuticals are (at least initially) derived from natural compounds. Just be sure to do your homework. Sometimes the natural stuff works better, sometimes not. If you could show us the scriptural prohibition against the drugs dispensed in a pharmacy, that might be helpful, otherwise, it's simply an opinion - something to be decided on with prayer.

Rebecca - posted on 11/10/2010

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I feel your pain. I have struggled with the same on and off since I was young. When I fully surrender to God, He lifts my spirits and I can once again function without fear.
Living with anxiety and panic attacks is due to living in fear. We know that fear comes from the enemy, satan. Remind yourself that satan wants you defeated and not living in faith. Listen to some good sermons on fear/anxiety online. They helped me a great deal to stop focusing on myself and focus on the Lord.

I recently had a nervous breakdown, when it seems my whole world collapsed. I have always been the one to hold everything together, but these things were out of my control, and I was struggling to give that control to God.
I had to have an emergency c-section or my son would have died (cord prolapse), I was caring for my mother dying of cancer, our home was being foreclosed on (we got out of that), having to care for my husband and four children, and all the extra burdens in life. I physically could not go to the store either without having a meltdown. I could'nt eat, I could'nt sleep, etc, etc.
You have got to get a break from the children. Ask your husband to watch them for awhile so you can get out with a friend, or spend time alone with God, re-connecting with Him.
It is not true that God will not give you more than you can handle. Because I could not handle this, only He could. He wants us to rely on Him and stop trusting in ourselves.

On the health side of things...look into adrenal fatigue/burnout. That is what happend to me and it causes this cycle of anxiety, because your adrenals can't keep up with all of the stress you are putting on them.
Cut out any caffeine in your diet, which are stimulants and cause the adrenals to get out of balance. When I start to feel like my nerves are shot I take magnesium, which helps to calm the nerves. Most people are defficient in Magnesium and Vitamin D, which both help with anxiety.
You can also try St. John's Wort, or what I take, Tang Qui and Peony. I went to see a naturopath, and that is what she put me on. It regulates your hormones, and really stops the anxiety. These are natural herbs that God has given us. We are warned in scripture about using pharmaceutical drugs, which alter our state of mind, and do harm to our bodies.

I notice many times I am more tense and anxious right before my period (PMS), which is due to hormone fluctuations. If this is your case I would get your hormone levels tested, check out www.testmyhormones.com .

You will get through this, and God can heal you. Rely on Him and take one day at a time.

Isa 41:10 Fear thou not; for I [am] with thee: be not dismayed; for I [am] thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.

Jhn 16:33 These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.

2Ti 1:7 For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

Psa 56:3 What time I am afraid, I will trust in thee.

1Jo 4:18 There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.

Elizabeth - posted on 11/10/2010

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Christina - I have suffered from depression most of my life, so I can relate. Take it to Jesus, and take yourself to the doctor. Get a full checkup to rule out physical causes. Then find a CHRISTIAN counselor or pastor to talk to! You might need meds, but then again, you might not. They can help, so if you DO need them, take them. No one will take your kids away if you are actively seeking help. You can help them best by helping yourself. The best way to combat this is to throw all the resources God has given at it! Prayer first and always, daily Bible study, friends and family, exersize, healthy food AND medical help (counseling! and possibly meds). You are SO not alone! BTW, I fought against taking meds for a long time. I thought taking them would be a lack of faith, and that they would change who I was. Neither was true. I started to feel like MYSELF again, and I was clear-headed enough to deal with the issues that caused the depression in the first place. I take blood pressure medication and synthetic thyroid hormones - that isn't a lack of faith, it's medical necessity. I'm not trying to push you to take medications, just letting you know it's ok if you DO need them. Counseling has helped me, too. Hold on to Jesus, and He will bring you through! I'll be praying for you!

Anne - posted on 11/10/2010

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Christina my heart goes out to you. I have been where you are in regards to depression. You did not say how close in age your children are, I am sure you are a good mom. Just the fact that you are concerned and realize that you are depressed is a step in the right direction. If you could go to your health care professional and tell that person what you said here you may find out the you do have someone you can talk to. It was not until I leveled with my Dr. that I was able to get medical help for my depression. Now having said that I do need to tell you that just because I was put on medication for the depression I still had a responsibility to do my part. Here are the things that have helped me.

Prayer and staying in the word. Eating right, not a lot of junk food or fast food. enough sleep(at this point in your life this may mean napping when your children nap.) and exercising. Exercising can be a simple as walking, by parking farther from the door when you go grocery shopping, and taking the time to walk around the store before you start your shopping.
Putting on Praise and Worship music and dancing with your children around the living or family room.

Remember that depression IS NOT A REFLECTION of HOW GOOD A MOM YOU ARE!. It is a REAL Medical Concern.
I hope some of this has helped. Remember also that we are here for you, it may not be a personal as an in person type of friendship, but these moms on CM have lifted me up in Prayer and friendship many times. WE will do the same for you also. I will keep you in my Prayers, Praying with and for you.

Carla - posted on 11/10/2010

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Sweetheart, more people struggle with this than you will EVER know! I'll bet the people in the grocery store are looking at YOU trying to see if you can tell THEY'RE not normal! This world has gotten so hectic that people run like chickens with their heads cut off trying to simply exist.

I would imagine most women battle anxiety and depression, in one form or another. And with six kids, I'm sure you've got your fair share of stressors. You look really young, and I am assuming you are trying to be the perfect wife, perfect mother, perfect daughter, perfect parishioner, perfect housekeeper, perfect EVERYTHING. But guess what? NO ONE can do this! This is a lie that TV made up. Mrs. Brady had six kids, and her house was spotless, she always looked perfect and her household run smoothly. That is TV. Not real life. Real life is dirty diapers, dog throwing up on the rug, kids into the fridge and hubby asking 'what's for dinner?'. I'm getting stressed just typing it!

The first thing to do is go directly to the Father. Tell Him very plainly how you are feeling. Only He can calm your anxiety and soothe the depression. I know. I took every kind of anti-depressant, anti-anxiety med out there, and nothing helped. It took me getting on my face before Him and confessing I couldn't do anything without Him. Put the baby in the crib and just take a little time for just you and God. Next, realize that no one can do it all, and relax! No one died from clutter, the world won't come to an end if dinner isn't on the table at the precise hour, and no one will take the kids away if they aren't spotless and perfect.

Women are multi-taskers. God made us that way so that we COULD be mothers. But sometimes we push the envelope past what we were meant to do. Take a frank look at your expectations for yourself. Are you being too harsh on yourself? Is Hubby? Six kids take a lot of work. Things need to be delegated. What can your children do to take some of the burden off you? Little ones can pick up their own toys when they're done with them. They can take their plates into the kitchen after dinner. They can feed the dog. They can bring their dirty clothes to the laundry room. Hubby can wash dishes after you've made dinner. There's no shame in admitting you can't do it all, honey. There's only shame in trying to do it all, and falling flat on your face in a mental ward (Been there, done that!).

God never gives us more than we can handle; He expects us to use wisdom in how we carry this out, however. Go to Him and find that wisdom.

God bless, honey, praying for you

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