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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I just want to thank you all for being here through all of my hard times, I read through these posts and forums like a bible when i'm going having DP and anxiety it helps so much knowing that you are not alone.

Anyway, this is my story. I'm 24, Female, Live in Australia, this is going to be a long story.

At the age of 16 I was given Lexapro for mild depression, at that time I don't think i really needed it, i didn't take it every day, i didn't take it properly at all and was getting brain zaps and all sorts of issues. after about 3 months of this a friend and I heard that taking a large dose of nutmeg would give you a high, we tried this, i felt nothing. 2 minutes after she left my house i had my first ever SEVERE panic attack, I believe now that it was from being anxious about what I had just taken and that it probably had no effect on me at all. At this age i had no idea what the hell was happening, i made my friend come back and get me, we drove to a quiet place near a river and i ran around like a crazy person i even said please just let me die i dont know what is happening. I laid in the back of her car for hours i was so scared i was going bat shit crazy and if anyone else saw me i would be sent to a mental institute, i 100% believed that at the time. I thought i was doomed to feel this way forever. I stayed at her house for 3 days without telling anyone, her family didn't even know i was there. I finally felt slightly better and went home. I continued on living my regular life and I suppose i just got better after a while. At this point I certainly didn't know it was a panic attack, and i never told any of my family.

For the next few years i would go through bouts of anxiety and some panic attacks but not really too bad. I then moved away from my home town to the city. Mostly it was pretty well. And then I would start getting a huge panic attack every 6 months. I couldn't even put a name on it at this point. I saw GP's I went to a neurologist who said maybe i have abscence seizures, i had a CT scan... Nothing wrong with me. No one even thought to tell me it's anxiety and depersonalisation. That's about 8 years of my life now that I had no idea what was even happening. The most recent panic attack i had was a couple of weeks ago, I have had DP with every panic attack but this time it has lingered around, so i looked it up. And WOW have I felt so much comfort from actually understanding what is wrong with me/us. I can understand that my brain just needed to check out for a while. (I have had big changes moving house, finding out my grandfather is an aboriginal man out of nowhere). Lots of things. I was sick and I was out walking, I started to panic because i needed to lay down but we were to far away from home so i started to panic and get nervous.

I started stomping my feet, tensing my whole body pulling at my hair squinting all of the things you guys probably go through when DP and panic attacks set in.

I got home from my walk and I was a mess, my partner doesn't understand mental illness which makes life a lot harder he said "you're home now why are you even panicing still". Just a real soul crusher at the time, i mean i wish i knew. I came inside ran to the toilet started to vomit and hit the toilet, i do things like that to know i can actually feel and i'm actually a real living person. (which in turn freaks my partner out and i feel even worse for being a psycho).

It's been about 3 weeks since the main attack, I started 25mg Zoloft 2 weeks ago, was going alright tried to up it to 50mg last night felt awful today anxious and jittery, heart palpitations, nightmares. All the stuff they tell you about, but i do think the 25mg helped a little and now if i can handle 50 i will be okay. I also take valium as needed which has only been given to me this year because as i said no one ever told me i had panic disorder, i had 100 blood tests and nothing was wrong with me.

I also started seeing a psychologist and and acupuncturist and both seem to be going alright. I haven't got a strong family network and my friends don't really live nearby either so i spend 95% of my time with my partner who really doesn't understand what i'm going through and at times i feel guilty - for example if i can't get out of bed or i pull out of doing things because i just can't move or leave the house. it all makes no sense to him.

I eat a fairly healthy diet, I am active, I believe i'm mostly a happy person but my anxiety has been such an underlying problem. I am shy (didn't realise that's anxiety) i get nervous in crowds (anxiety) i can't be too far from home (anxiety). I think anxiety is overlooked these days because depression is the word people use and anxiety just falls under that umbrella.

I appreciate all of the things i've read on here, good and bad. I love hearing your experiences and I want people to be able to approach me. I'll let you know how the zoloft goes, usually my DP would have cleared up by now. I feel devestated when i read that people have DP for months and years at a time. There will be a point in your life where you will feel okay and you will see some hope. Thanks again guys!
 

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Welcome to the site! I'm pleased to read it has helped you as much as it has helped me.

I was basically in the exact same state as you, curling up in a ball, purging and losing a bunch of weight because of it. Every morning I woke up, I thought "today's the day" that I finally lose my mind and wind up in a straightjacket in a padded room isolated from all things living. I went on living like this for roughly 4 years until I discovered this site, and finally found out what was wrong with me. Ever since I feel as if I have had more of a grasp on this issue. Although still prominent, I have accepted my disorder and I genuinely believe I will recover over time.

I too have had a partner that didn't understand this, and didn't want to either. She felt as if I just used it as an excuse to be lazy and unloving. Every time I'd show her videos and blogs about it, she'd have absolutely no input on the matter and shrug it off. I understand where you're coming from on this one.

As for the meds, please stop taking them! You are much better off without them. Do not give in to them just because your doctor says they're what's best for you. This disorder can lift 100% naturally, so I strongly recommend you don't poison yourself with all of those medications. I get flak for my opinion on meds, but they are nothing more than a mask, and once you're on them long enough, you become hooked. By all means though if you absolutely need them, don't let some stranger on the internet tell you what to do!

That being said, welcome to the site. Here's hoping to a quick recovery :)
 

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Oh my god my story is almost exactly like yours.

My only problem now is my panic attacks. They seem to happen totally at random, even when I'm laying down trying to go to sleep. Usually they'll happen at work though. I wouldn't even mind the panic attacks that much, but the physical symptoms of them are different almost every time, making me believe in the moment that there's something genuinely wrong with me, thus fueling the attack lol It isn't until afterwards I think about it and realize it was all just a symptom of anxiety. Still to this day, in the back of my mind I suspect that something else is wrong with my head. But then I just think back to the first few panic attacks, and analyze multiple factors that probably caused it. Then I can kind of solve the case and reassure myself that it's all just anxiety.

Anyway, thanks for posting your story. It feels good to hear about someone who has gone through what I'm going through right now.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks for the reply guys means a lot, i'm really glad reading my story can help you relate a little bit.

I took the 50mg of Zoloft for two days, I was feeling even more DP and I was so sick I couldn't go to work, had heart palpitations, dizzy, no energy. I was getting very depressed and knew I couldn't take 50mg again. So I went to the doctor today he said I should stick to 25mg due to having a slow metabolism and being a rather small person (55kg) so I think I will be alright on this amount and if my anxiety can be lifted a bit i know that my DP will slowly go away again.

I was taking a few pills of Valium as I needed them and lately that's been fairly often but thank god it's helped more than i ever expected. I know without them calming me down I would have ended up in the ER. I've felt a bit better today after having 25mg last night. I feel pretty foggy and am having trouble remembering things. But I do know these few weeks on zoloft have helped me a little.

The body is a strange thing, having panic attacks from things that are not a real threat is just ridiculous. In today's society there aren't that many reasons why our flight or fight response needs to even be as strong as it use to be 1000s of years ago. DP would have been happening to people well before you and I, but i don't think anybody would have had a name for it, or even spoken about it so this is a great community.

It feels absolutely hopeless living with DP not knowing when it will disappear, people around you not even slightly understanding (which is fair enough because unless you have experienced it you wouldn't have a clue). It does feel like you are in a constant acid trip (never done acid i'm just assuming) just an awful strange world where you are the only one and you don't really know who you're with or what they are saying. It's hard to get back into the swing of things and a lot of posts say you just need to get out and do it, which i agree with but if you know that you will be triggered by something take it slow, don't feel the pressure to do that thing there will be a point where you can do it without having such a strong feeling of panic.

Does anyone else get panic attacks from the DP coming on too strong? I have had constant DP for this last few weeks but when I get a stronger feeling of it in public I get another panic attack?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
Today I feel pretty good maybe 95% better. I thought I had a really good sleep but my partner said i was kicking and punching and having a panic attack in my sleep. However I seem to be feeling better than i have in the last few weeks. I went to the gym this morning did a full body workout and some walking. I also have a feeling that the medicine my naturopath gave me has improved my health a bit which in turn makes me feel better and ready to do things.

I get sick from foods very easily and get run down a lot. I was given some probiotics, cardiox and some other things which have given me some energy. I hope you guys can find small ways to find some relief. I recently started a new graphic design job where i am very anxious still and am the only girl with 3 other guys. I get nervous eating around people and avoid it all the time in turn creating more anxiety, bit weird but i was brought up eating alone as my older brothers and sisters had moved out and i hold my knife and fork weird apparently. hopefully i can overcome this fear.

During the worst of my DP i looked at so many youtube vids which did help a lot one guy in particular:

check that out i think it made me better than anything else could have at the time i watched it over and over again.

Just keeping you updated and showing you there might be hope.
 
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^^ I've had great results from seeing naturopaths as well. And osteopaths and homeopaths too. I've been seeing a homeopath for about a year now.. she's amazing. 1 little pill virtually stops anxiety for a couple of weeks. But also seeing naturopaths (25 years off and on) has set me up with invaluable knowledge, particularly around what I put into my body.

Diet may not be everything but it sure makes a difference. The minute I start eating crap, I feel crap. Funny about that huh?

Keep up the good work..
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Yeh it's important to search for things that will help you and what you might be open to :) I found that when i eat junk i feel better (that's even weirder) this is because my tummy is a mess and has a hard time digesting food and junk food is processed already and easy to get down, but obviously prolonged eating of it i feel awful. I was eating healthy as my natropath asked of me, i had a berry smoothie in the morning and nuts etc with my lunch, all of which ended up in my poop (sorry had to be said), and basically i wasn't digesting it properly so we're trying to work that out i'm having digestive enzyme tablets hopefully can help me out. It's so easy to fall into DP when you are fun down, they say your adrenal glands are working over time and this will make you more anxious, i know for a fact when i get really sick i'm going to get strong DP.

I forgot to mention i broke out in a rash on my face a week after i started taking zoloft, i switched to Avanza thinking that zoloft was my problem turned out it was a reaction to something else. I took avanza when i got home from the doctors and BAM panic attack and extreme DP within the first half hour, i tried to vomit and everything just to get it out of me i have no idea what that was about but i will never take it again.

I did a lot of exercise and gardening today and i'm really tired and dizzy and wobbly and do feel more DP than i would if i wasn't so tired. It's such a hard thing to live with and i wish none of us had to go through any of this, but i do think it makes you a much stronger and BETTER person as a whole, you become more compassionate and understanding for others and you realise you never know what somebody could be going through. So just be nice :)
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
The best way I know that I will get out of DP is when i eventually get so sick of thinking about DP or bothering with it, like right now i'm sitting on the couch relaxing and it's subsiding because i really cannot be bothered fighting it and analyzing it. And that's exactly what i think to myself when i'm in a huge panic attack or DP state - i will eventually either be so bored or tired of worrying about this bullshit that it will actually pass. And it does (eventually)
 
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There's a lot to be said for getting the chance at the end of the day to just chill a little. It IS very tiring. Who would have thought it took so much energy just to think? I still get tired even without constant dissociation.

I notice you're in Aus. Me too. Have you had any drama finding docs that actually know anything about dp/dr? I struggled for years looking for some good help from the primary mental health sector, basically no one had much advice or idea at all.. so I simply gave up trying. I think that was a blessing in disguise to tell the truth.

Gardening is very grounding. It probably one of my most used 'tools'. Do you find you don't dissociate so much out in the garden? Good workout too!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
There's a lot to be said for getting the chance at the end of the day to just chill a little. It IS very tiring. Who would have thought it took so much energy just to think? I still get tired even without constant dissociation.

I notice you're in Aus. Me too. Have you had any drama finding docs that actually know anything about dp/dr? I struggled for years looking for some good help from the primary mental health sector, basically no one had much advice or idea at all.. so I simply gave up trying. I think that was a blessing in disguise to tell the truth.

Gardening is very grounding. It probably one of my most used 'tools'. Do you find you don't dissociate so much out in the garden? Good workout too!
Hey fellow Aussie, as I mentioned I pretty much only just discovered i had anxiety, and when i turned up at my GP during a full on DP/panic attack and i was crying he said yes yes it's a panic attack you will be okay and gave me my first ever valium thank god. That was about 5 months ago, so before that i had no idea and that's the worst part and my first panic attack/DP was 8 years ago.... such a cruel world. In the last few weeks i have moved house and now have a new GP and a Psych and natropath and i explained i think i have anxiety and panic attacks along with DP and explained all my symptoms and they all agreed yes DP is very common with panic attacks and they don't think i'm bat shit crazy so that is a good start.

I feel that when i talk to them about it all they seem to dismiss the DP part and only talk about my anxiety, which is okay but i hope they understand the DP is my main concern and the thing that i am most frightened of. I find a lot of people say they can't sleep at night with anxiety? I can't get enough sleep i fall straight to sleep at night every night i'm mentally drained and exhausted every single day that sleep is so necessary and the only time i can relax. I usually go to sleep at 10.30 and wake up at 8.30am and i rarely feel rested. however now on the zoloft i'm feeling a slight peak in energy levels during the day, even though i take it at night. Has anyone else had any luck with medication? do they have DP only during stressful times and how long does it last?

Thanks again guys for being here i'm so glad i joined up after months of lurking around reading stories about this awful awful awful situation we've all been in.
 

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So I've just kind of skimmed and haven't read much but depersonalization is a way of your mind protecting it's self. The worse my dp is the less panic attacks I have. It's making it really uuncomfortable for me to have panic attacks now like in a weird way and worse then normal. But I think if I wanna become human again I have to let myself feel, even the scary stuff. In the past couple of weeks I've been embracing my panic. It's the worst ever but every few days something WWill cross mind that will remind me of what kind of person I really am. It's like meeting myself for the first time. I mean for example yesterday I was getting ready to do something that I was supposed to do with a friend. I was thinking so hard about why not was wrong to go ahead without the friend I knew it was wrong but I couldn't understand why. And then I just remembered sharing. It's wrong because the type of person that I am is the type of person who would give you the shirt off their back, but for the past eight months I didn't know tthat. I think what I'm trying to say is in my personal experience the more time I spend hating and hiding my panic attacks the worse my dp gets.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Okkkay guys, been a few days, mostly improving I am feeling the DP lifting slightly every morning. Not a lot but a glimmer of hope most days. However tonight I went to the cinema I saw Maze Runner, which i think is a good movie but it was a bit confusing and a little scary i suppose, so i started to get a bit panicy where as usually with action films and horror i never pay much interest. I suppose i was so invested in the film that i felt like i was there (they were stuck in a maze and couldn't get out) and that's basically what's going on in my head. I often can't pay much attention to movies because my mind is always wandering to negative irrelevant things.

I felt a panic attack coming along so I went to the bathroom after the movie (i usually get a bit of panic walking out of cinemas for some reason) I had two valiums as i knew we were staying in the shopping centre to get dinner, and food courts usually tip me over the edge, when people look at me i feel like they think im a crazy person, the noises and sounds become far too overwhelming, the lights are too bright, there is no natural light or easy exit. I know the valiums are a mask, but i feel like i handled it all pretty well and next time i know it's not so bad i will be okay without valium. If I didn't have them i would have avoided the situation but i really wanted to push myself and deal with it. My partner was saying things like calm down dont walk so fast (you all know if you need to walk fast, nothing will stop you so him saying that stressed me out). I also feel like i need time in a bathroom to sit and relax and chill the fuck out and he complains i take to long. so it sure does feel like a lonely battle.

As people have been saying medicine will not help your DP, i disagree at the moment. In my case anyway DP is brought upon from my insecurities and anxiety. I know that if i have something keeping me physically calm and stopping my heart from beating out of my chest I can work on the emotional side myself. I've been on zoloft for about 3-4 weeks and i feel that it has helped me through a few situations, i do feel a slight sense of calm, not too much, but enough to know i need to pull myself together it won't do all the work.

I will see a doctor and my psychologist again soon. I need to have valium on me at all times at the moment. I know that it's not healthy blah blah blah. but honestly it's the only thing that is keeping me from loosing my shit in public. I don't even need to take the pill i just need it in my bag or nearby to remind myself if i really need to i'll take it and i will be okay and the thoughts will slow down.
 
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Hi khamilton,

Must be Aussie's time on.. :) Hey not a nice experience in the cinema at all. Sorry that happened, but it's good to hear about the moments of clarity you're getting every now and again. It's always good to have some time out from this.. It slowly builds too as you go along… always the chance of a hiccup here and there though.

I just posted something in another thread about being triggered watching films. Interesting that you talked about your experience with watching a film. Do you think the film triggered something for you? Did the concepts, kind of overload your thinking and make a mess of your brain? I was just asking, b/c certain films do this to me.. and I've heard many other dissociative people say they get triggering watching some films too.. I've found I'm more choosey about what I watch now. That works well for me.

I haven't seen Maze Runner but I googled it.. yeah the plot looks very triggering. Chock o block full of triggering concepts if you ask me… loosing memories, telepathy, a maze (always confusing), regaining memories.. and that was just from skimming over the basic plot.

Anyway… just some thoughts.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
Hey Zed,

I'll read through some of your stuff tonight, I am at my graphic design job, i dragged myself out of bed today, i woke up with some pretty heavy DP (I had two laxatives last night because i felt pretty yucky) and i woke up at 4am needing to go to the toilet and again at 7am when my alarm was and i was just not right mentally or physically don't know what that was all about but i'll be avoiding that situation from now on.

I'd just like to point out i was about 95% better last night, i went to the beach i went to the supermarket all with the 'i don't care what happens' attitude, sometimes i get really nervous and worry about all the noise etc but i did just fine. The funny thing is I worked at Woolworths for 4 years and i was super comfortable with all the noises and lights and people at that particular Woolies but if i went to another one in my own time i would be too overwhelmed.

Yep I didn't realise Maze Runner was going to do my head in so much. Like i said when i watch action films etc with my partner I tend to zone out because it can be too intense for me. I like watching crappy reality tv and simple movies, as i don't want to be taken to far away from reality! Which just made sense to me as i wrote this :)

Hope you're all getting through!
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Hi Everyone,

Just letting you know it has been over a week. I had to take some Valium on Saturday after I came inside from gardening I got some bad DP and I wanted to stop it ASAP. So I took 6mg and apparently my doctor didn't like that when i told him yesterday and now he won't give me anymore. I said I don't want to be on Zoloft I just want to take Valium as needed... Nope he wouldn't give me more. So I might honestly look to the internet to buy some. I still have plenty left I just want to make sure I have more than enough just incase.

Anyway after I took the 6mg I had a great sleep, and I woke up feeling pretty great. As i had said earlier a lot of new changes are happpening, new job, new house, new area, new puppy... it's all a bit much waking up in a new place so I think maybe i'm just adjusting. Since Saturday (it's now wednesday) i can say I feel pretty great, i went and saw Gone Girl at the movies last night, a scary long movie and i handled it really well, no valium needed. I feel more comfortable in my surroundings and i'm feeling DP fading away once again. Hopefully this time it doesn't come back, however i've never been able to control it as it's coming on because I never expect it. But i definitely do not forget what it feels like.
 

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hey Hamilton

your story is frightening similar to mine. I fully relate with the issue of not being able to discuss it properly with your partner. My wife just doesn't understand mental illness and because I'm a confident and social guy on the outside she struggles to comprehend how I can be "DP'd" on the inside.

I've just starting see a psych and he's been very correct in pointing out how the DP for me is a function of classical conditioning. Basically my mind is now associating so many situations, sights, sounds etc with anxiety/dp that it's as if the thoughts are always lurking in my mind waiting to pounce.

We aren't crazy at all which is proven in the way we are perfectly fine when distracted. My brain still works very well and I'm very productive at work/golf/cooking (my 3 big passions). It's all because of our sub-conscious mind associating thoughts with situations/sights/sounds. I am about to start Cognitive Behavioural Therapy which is intended to retrain the brain to not worry or panic when the triggers come. Basically our brains are on high alert because of previous panic attacks etc.

I hope I'm not sounding too much like an armchair expert but I've suffered this for 2 years and now I'm understanding the matrix of it all. DP and anxiety go hand in hand. My suggestion is too simply do everything you can to give your mind the best of being calm. Eat well, don't smoke/drink/do drugs, plenty of exercise, plenty of good breathing techniques, mediation etc. Personally I have found meditation to be very effective. It's not until you calm your mind down that you realised how wound up and anxious it was before.

All the best buddy. We're all in this together :)
 
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I have not had time to read the original posts, but the title kind of throws me, please tell me if you're thinking that DP brought on by panic is more mild? Or if it goes away? 'Cause after 10 years i know that to be highly untrue. Not trying to be negative just a little curious as to the meaning of the title of the thread.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
I have not had time to read the original posts, but the title kind of throws me, please tell me if you're thinking that DP brought on by panic is more mild? Or if it goes away? 'Cause after 10 years i know that to be highly untrue. Not trying to be negative just a little curious as to the meaning of the title of the thread.
Read the thread. I have also has DP on and off for ten years.
 

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Just to you know people i had my onset with 13 years old and by that time i was feeling só bad that i States in bed all day TRYInG TO forget the feeling but all day effort goes to the trash can when i had to stand up and go to bathroom só i changed the city and started to Live wit my brothers, i started to work (having anxiety all day) and after 1 and a half year the feeling disapeared, (my dp started literally out of the blue when i was watching a movie and 3 days after feeling strange i had my first panic attack) and came back just after 5 years without feeling nothing (one panic attack here one there but no dp) só i agree if your dp was brought by a panic attack it will go away with time, but you know how dp feels like and the chance that the attack brings the dp again is great, thats my opinions.
 
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