Group Therapy, Ketamine and Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS)

A month and a half ago I started a partial hospitalization group therapy program. In that time I’ve learned some coping skills that I really need to start and master. But overall I’m not sure what I’m getting out of it.

While in group I feel good, better than normal which is saying a lot, it’s good to be around people who have similar problems. However, once group ends and we go our separate ways my mood starts to decline and that’s where the trouble starts. The ups and downs of emotions, feeling good then not wears on the psyche and puts me in a bad state of mind.

The psychiatrist at the facility suggested I would be a good candidate for two different treatments. The first is the newly FDA approved ketamine nasal spray. While I like the idea of it, it supposedly gets rid of your suicidal thoughts almost immediately. The drawback is you have to sit in your doctor’s office for two hours afterwards to make sure there’s no adverse effects and you have to do this monthly I believe. If I had a job that would make things difficult.

Ther second treatment is Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS.) This is a treatment I’ve wanted to try since I first read of its FDA approval which I believe was early 90’s.

This is a treatment where you go five days a week over a six week period to have electromagnetic waves shot into your head. This treatment is suppose to relieve or totally get rid of depression symptoms. The electromagnetic waves are suppose to get your neurotransmitters firing correctly and alleviate your depression.

I have chosen to start with TMS treatment.While this treatment does not address my bipolar or BPD disorder it’s a step in the right direction in getting a lot of the help and relief I need.

I am three days into TMS treatment and so far it’s going well. After the first two days I had more energy and have been able to shower on a daily basis. This morning I woke up down from the elation I was feeling but I’m hoping that’s from a lack of sleep, I enjoyed feeling happy again even if it was just slightly.

Right now I’m putting a lot of faith and my life in the TMS treatment. This is a treatment geared to those of us that are treatment resistant so I am hoping it’ll help me. If it doesn’t than I’m stuck with the ketamine treatment and if that doesn’t work I’m SOL. Let’s all hope for TMS!!!

Why Therapy Doesn’t Work for Me

So I’ve realized a major flaw in my therapy and it’s me.

I’ve been living with my depression and whatnot for over 40 years. I’ve kept it hidden to the best of my ability from friends and familybecause I didn’t want them to pity me or for me to be a burden to them or worst case scenario people walking away because they don’t want to or know how to deal with it.

So back to me being the flaw. While I am now often and honest about everything and I do participate on group I’m still protecting myself to my own detriment. How so you ask? Probably not but I’ll tell you anyway. I’m too smart (or stupid) for my own good.

Having researched my mental health issues for so long as well as psychology and psychiatry I know the things to say to make the therapist think I’m making progress, this is how I got out of the hospital. While I do want to get better and be done semblance of “normal” I make it hard on myself to get there by not admitting I’m not really where they think I am or should be. I have no one to blame but myself and it’s something I need to work on.

Selfish.

The article that spawned this post is included at the end.

After my attempt in April 2017 some of my loved ones talked to me about how difficult it would be for them to not have me in their lives. While I understand it would hurt them I know in the long run they will accept it and move on with thier lives. I have told those close to me should I ever attempt again, something that has been on my mind quite a lot these past weeks and succeed there is nothing that could’ve been said or done it is/was my choice.

While I know some if not most think it’s a selfish act in reality it is no more selfish then asking me to stay around to keep me in your life. If I were to do it it’s to end the every day emotional and physical pain I’ve had to endure for over forty years. Sure there some better days than others but the pain no matter what ever goes away. If you could walk a mile in my shoes, something I wouldn’t wish upon anyone you might better understand what I and others like me deal with daily. Dealing with severe depression, being Type 1 bipolar and having boderline personality disorder is a very hard combination to deal with and some days it’s nearly impossible.

Every day I wake up two hours early and lay in bed just to get the mental energy to get up by the time I actually have to be up just to face the day. Throughout the day and all night I’m stuck in my head fighting the bad thoughts that are there and often even though it’s a very bad thing to do I self medicate by drinking just to get to sleep. This is not a life I choose to live but it’s my reality.

https://afsp.org/i-wasnt-able-to-save-him

Cacoon

Every night I crawl into bed and wrap myself up in my blankets creating a cocoon. I wrap myself up in hopes that tomorrow I’ll come out a better person. I hope to be released of my self doubt, depression and all the other mental health issues I’ve fought with for over 40 years. Sadly the cocooning never works and I either wake up in the same state as when I went to bed or worse.

I want to change, I want to be better and have some sort of “normal” but it doesn’t seem to be in the cards for me and it’s not for lack of trying. I just seem to keep sliding into a darker and darker place with no chance for escape.

Why I can’t get DBT therapy.

My psychiatrists office wants me to undergo a treatment called Dialectical Behavior Therapy (DBT) a proven effective treatment for people like me. After researching the three local suggested offices that offer the treatment they state that insurance doesn’t cover most of the treatment or covers it at all. This means hundreds of dollars or more out of pocket which I can’t afford and I am guessing thousands more who could benefit from it can’t either. This needs to be fixed!

As it is most psychiatrist don’t accept insurance because they don’t get reimbursed enough. In the past year when looking for help we found psychiatrist had varying rates ranging from $125-$350 or more per session. I don’t know many who can afford those rates every week. It seems next to impossible to really get the help one truly needs!

Right now I’m just seeing a psych nurse for medications and a counselor/social worker who I really like. While she’s helpful on some things she can only do so much. So whats a person like me suppose to do but to fight on my own and depend on friends to try and save me from destructive behavior. Maybe someday the meds will actually work. Rant over.