So Depressed

Discussion in 'The Watercooler' started by meowbunny, Dec 16, 2007.

  1. meowbunny

    meowbunny New Member

    I have situational/stress-related depression. Have suffered with it on and off for years. Most of the time, I can cope quite well when it hits me - a week or so on Lexapro, healthy diet and exercise and I'm fine. This time around, nothing is working.

    I miss my old home and friends. I had a good business that I can't do here. I hate that I had to leave what I loved for the safety of myself and my child.

    I can't find a job that pays even a semi-living wage - $10/hour is considered a good (???!!!!!) wage. I'm slowly healing from the gall bladder surgery - much slower than I'd like and the surgeon is concerned. Making noises about more tests and possible exploratory to see if there are adhesions.

    The medical bills are rolling in and no medical insurance and I don't qualify for any type of assistance. Okay, I expected the hospital bill to be high. But sure wish someone would have warned me that I'd get bills from the surgeon and the anesthesiologist (yes, I knew these were coming), the hospital x-ray (!!) department, the hospital ER, the lab fees. I'm getting a new medical bill almost daily. Total so far is $53,000. I'm afraid to look at the mail - seems like a new bill comes daily. I have no way to pay this amount.

    Oh, did I mention I now have a rash on side of my back that is not clearing up? I know I should see a doctor about it but the idea of one more bill is more than I can bear. I can't even afford to find a therapist here right now.

    I have $4,000 left to my name. When it is gone, there is literally nothing left. I hate, hate, hate being in such a financial bind. I'm not used to it, Have never been there before.

    I have never been so sad and miserable before in my life. I have actually considered suicide but all I would be doing is leaving my daughter with this mess and she would have even less of an idea of how to cope with it than I do.

    I know there are no answers or real solutions. Heck, even filing for bankruptcy costs more than I can afford and something my pride won't even let me consider. (How's that for a Catch 22?)

    Sometimes reality really does bite!
  2. klmno

    klmno Active Member

    I am so sorry you are going thru this. {{{HUGS}}}

    Have you considered just talking to someone about bankruptcy- without actually filing?

    Would it make you feel better to send cards or letters to your old friends? Or make a phone call or two?

    I wish I knew more to say to make you feel better- just hang in there- at least you've been through situational depression before and KNOW (as a reminder to you!!), it will get better and somehow, things will turn around!

    Remeber, you always have friends here...
  3. nvts

    nvts Active Member

    Ok MB, lets take a look at things here.

    Have you been refused coverage by anyone? We were in pretty bad shape, neither husband nor I could find a job and our medical insurance was costing us $725. per month. I was told that we wouldn't qualify because we own a house.

    Guess what? One trip to the medicaid office with SS cards, kids birth certificates and proof of address (gas or elec. bill) and the kids were enrolled the 1st day of the next month. We took 3 mos. because we were healthy. My sister went and she was covered the 1st day of the following month (as were her kids) because she was ill at the time.

    Moral: don't go by what you think. Go down there and see.

    You may be able to get welfare, disability, etc. I don't know how old your daughter is, but she may be able to get WIC. Does she have a developmental disability? She could collect soc. security disability.

    If life is kicking you while you're down, KICK BACK!

    Situational depression svcks! Try focusing on the big picture, you got away from a horrible situation and you're trying to find your nitch.

    Try cortisone cream for the rash. You may be healing slower than expected because you have depression. Your body doesn't heal as quickly when you are depressed because everything is focused on the depression as opposed to healing.

    Take your vitamins, brush your teeth and take a nap. Hug your difficult child, love yourself.

    OR ELSE I WILL BAKE YOU COOKIES!!! No one wants that!!!!

    Thinking of you and sending positive thoughts to a great person!!!

  4. Big Bad Kitty

    Big Bad Kitty lolcat

    (((((((((((((((((((((((((((((((BIGBIGBIG hugs))))))))))))))))))))))))))))))

    I am so sorry that you are in a bind. I have SO been there done that (in fact, I am being there, doing that). It is extremely hard when it is something that you are not used to.

    Your sig has said (at least that I can remember) severely depressed since you started. I realize that these things are situational. Are you depressed besides? I have clinical depression, that I am treated daily for, have been for years, and on top of that I get occasional situational depression, or real real sadness. Wondered if that was pretty much what you were experiencing.

    Honey, I don't know if you are under a doctor's care or if you are taking your medications on your own. But as far as I know, AD's do not work like cold medicine. You don't take them till you feel better and then just stop. In fact, you can wind up feeling worse than when you started.

    Would anyone else care to comment on this? Am I way off here?

    We are all here to help see eachother through. Definitely write a letter or email to some of your friends. In fact, you may have to grieve the loss of your life back where you used to live. Grieve it like a death. You had to lose it, not by your choice, but because of another person's agenda. Acceptance (TRUE acceptance, not "yeah, I know it is better for us to be here) will help you get through the transition.

    Get on Go to the unemployment office and get on job match. Get your resume out there. I know it is hard when you are sad. Get through the holidays first.

    And get yourself to a doctor about your back.
  5. skeeter

    skeeter New Member

    talk with the hospital. Most will allow you to set up some type of payment plan, and some may even forgo some of that bill. But don't just ignore the bills - you need to talk to them.

    See if there's a non-profit credit counseling service in your area (they are often associated with the United Way). They will also help you cope with those medical bills. In fact, talking with the United Way may also help with other areas that you are having difficulty in.

    Are you religious (not making a judgement one way or the other)? If so, have you found a church to be a part of? If you have, talk to the pastor or minister about your situation. Including the lack of employment.

    But most of all, talk to US when it gets to be too much.
  6. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member

    I have heard of others taking prozac for one week a month. I believe ADs can be used that way.

    MB - didn't you retire when you moved? You did not have some sort of health care in retirement? If not, you need to get something set up ASAP. You can qualify. I suggest you get that $4k out of the bank before anyone tries to take it for those medical expenses.
    It is possible you can get coverage backdated. See if someone in the doctor's office can help you. If not, call the hospital social worker.

    I certainly understand that doing any of these things is 10x harder when you are feeling down on yourself. Take one thing at a time.

    I think at this point getting health coverage should be your number one priority. That is all you should focus on. Start with searching the internet. That will keep you busy. Then I think you should go out for a dunkin donuts or a starbucks - whatever makes you smile and say ahhhh.

    One thing. Health care coverage. Once you get that into someone else's hands you can work on your next priority.


    HUGS HUGS to you!
    Nobody needs the added stress during the holidays. I wish you some peace today.
  7. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    I ditto Beth. (all except on the baking part lol)

    You'll be surprised at who qualifies for welfare insur. easy child and her husband, and Darrin were on it for 3 yrs and both worked. Nichole is on it and is still living here at home. They're much more lenient about such things when you have a child under 18. Sadly Nichole knocked me out of the running, but now we have insur so it's no longer an issue.

    As for the doctor/medication bills, been there done that way way too many times, still doing it. Call the hospital billing dept. find out how many of those bills you can have lumped together. (lets you make smaller payments)Have them all ready and read them off. Then also ask about county assistance for those bills. If you have low or no income here our county will foot the medication/hospital bills or at least a huge portion of them. You just have to know it's available and grab the proper form. Which is located in our admitting dept. Then for what is left over, send them a dollar a month if you have to. Don't think they'll take it? Watch them, then they've agreed to what you're able to pay by default. (cashing the check)

    If you just have no other choice bankruptcy isn't so bad. Also been there done that twice, hope not to have to again but the way things are looking who knows. And you can have it done so you're still paying them back, just on a different scale.

    It's hard to recover when you're also fighting depression. Be sure to be good to yourself, and stop being so hard on yourself. Life changes can be tough. But you'll get back on your feet again.


  8. Steely

    Steely Active Member

    Oh boy, I am so sorry you are having to endure all of this!

    I think the others have all had great suggestions, here are the only other ones I could come up with.

    A) If you are clinically depressed, stopping and starting an anti-depressant is the WORST thing you can do. You need to be on an even, steady dose, for quite awhile, if you are expressing depression this severe. I have been on Lexapro for ten years, and there is no one that could convince me to go off of it. I need it stay sane, and even in my moods - otherwise I crash and become seriously depressed. If you think of it as insulin for a diabetic, I think that frames the physical necessity well. We do not have enough Serotonin, and we need a medicine that will cause our body to make more, so that we can function normally/

    B) Can you claim disability right now because of your health? That would start some checks rolling in, and automatically qualify you for medicaire. I think I would be showing up at social services door step, asap, and tell them everything, and they can point you to all the places you can go to get help.

    C) They cannot take away your house for the health bills. The worst they can do is toast your credit with them, so take a deep breath. Then call the hospital and ask to speak to the finance director and tell them what is going on. I would also go talk to a local non profit that can act as a liason for you. Whatever you do, don't file bankruptcy over medical bills. It is not like folding on a car payment, and they take the car away - they cannot take any property away for you in order to pay those bills.

    I hope today you are able to get some relief from this, in some way - and I will certainly be sending positive thoughts your way.
  9. meowbunny

    meowbunny New Member

    Let's see -- medical insurance. Have tried to get it. It is either exorbitant ($3,500/month!) or I don't qualify due to past health issues. The hospital did check if I qualified for any assistance and the basic answer was no. I don't have any disability, my daughter is over 18 and not disabled -- I'm just one of the middle class hung by their short hairs.

    Depresson -- Strictly situational/stress. I don't just take for a few days and quit. It is usually for a month or two and gradual weaning off under psychiatrist's care.

    No, I haven't retired. I just moved to a retirement community thinking I would be "younger" and, thus, it would be easier to find a job. Semi-right in that I can find a job but not one that has benefits or pays enough to even pay rent, let alone anything letting us survive.

    I do have my resume out all over the place. Really don't expect many nibbles before Christmas but am hoping for some luck next year.

    My surgeon has agreed to accept $25/month which is okay for now but if I don't find a job soon, even that's going to be impossible. The other doctors, etc. want full payment. Good luck fellas. The hospital and I are talking. Have sent them a letter requesting financial assistance (which really stinks in my mind). But even if I get some relief, it is so overwhelming. I'm at a time in life where things should be better financially. I shouldn't be so much lower in income than I was previously.

    I pretty much used up my savings when I had to send my daughter to Residential Treatment Center (RTC). I don't regret it, never will but losing that cushion has always been painful.

    Actually, have found talking to my friends back home more painful. One of them called me yesterday. We had a great chat. I got off the phone and bawled for an hour. I want my life back.

    I'm trying to make the best of the life I have right now but it's not my life. I feel like I'm a stranger in an even stanger land. People here are very sociable, all kinds of clubs and activities. I'm not a joiner. Crowds get me nervous. I never really planned to retire. I like working and had a career that allowed me to work as long as I was mentally capable of doing so. If I could make the right contacts, I could do it here but not having any luck with the few leads I have.

    I'm sorry to be whining and whimpering so much. I'm just so miserable and tired of acting like all is good. Nothing is good right now. I keep telling myself I'll get through this but I'm not convinced.
  10. meowbunny

    meowbunny New Member

    Oh poop! I forgot the main thing I wanted to say when I started whine number two .........

    Thank you for all your kind words. They really do mean a lot.
  11. busywend

    busywend Well-Known Member

    I am so sorry that you feel like a stranger in a strange land. Moving away from friends is difficult. HUGS!
  12. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Sending gentle hugs and prayers your way. :angel:
  13. flutterbee

    flutterbee Guest

    I'm sorry that struggling so much. I agree that after a while pretending everything is ok when it's not, just becomes too much.

    1st quarter is one of the best times to be looking for a job. Companies have their new budgets. And that's just around the corner. Have you looked into employment and temp agencies? A lot of the bigger employers don't advertise, they use agencies. Honda is out here by me and hires ALL of their staff through a temp agency and they have to work for Honda through the agency for a certain amount of time before they can be hired on permanently by Honda. Just something to consider.

    I know what you mean about the $10/hr. :rolleyes: A few years ago I was sending out resumes and got a call from this company going on and on and on about how important this position was, blah, blah, blah. Then they said it pays $10/hr. I haven't made $10/hr since I was 19. And told them so. If the position is sooo important, pay for it! Then there will be ads in the paper and they want a 4-yr degree minimum and they want to pay $10/hr! Who can do that and pay bills, including student loans. Amazing.

    I'm just saying, I can relate. It's extremely discouraging. I really think you'll see a difference in the 1st quarter as to what is out there.

    As far as the doctor bills...they may want them paid right now, but that's not what they're going to get. I bet if you sent them a check for $5, they'd take it. In fact, I've ALWAYS been told that they have to take whatever you send them. And as long as you send them SOMETHING on a regular basis, they cannot turn you over to collections or report negatively on your credit report. Medical bills are treated differently than any other debt because it's not like you went out shopping one day and said, hmmm, I think I'll have emergency gall bladder surgery. It's an unplanned and unexpected expense. I would definitely have the hospital consolidate your bills and then send them $5 a month for now. When you have more, you can send more.

    Take care of you.

  14. Star*

    Star* call 911


    Do you think at this point you are able to break down your situation into smaller problems or are you still somewhere in the Mad at the world and angry with yourself mood?

    I ask because last month - nothing seemed to work. I was too depressed to figure any of it out. I never posted because I didn't even want anyone here to know that I couldn't figure my own self out. When I finally did work up what I consider courage to talk about it - I got a flood of suggestions and well wishes, some hugs, some talk straight off the cuff, no bones kinda ideas. And it was only then I was able to start helping myself with suggestions.

    I get where you are coming about the suicide thing. Yes, yes - I know you would not do it, because your next sentence after said you would worry about your daughter. It's not uncommon when we feel so lost that we start internally processing solutions and suicide can come across as a last ditch effort. But we know it solves nothing.
    So I'm not too worried about your statement to that effect.

    I am worried about your depression and can't quite figure it out - up, down, up, middle, middle= down. Maybe YOU don't notice it - but I have. I am wondering if you wouldn't benefit from a medications tweak of some sort. Maybe you just need an increase or decrease in the Lexapro or not at all. There are places that will give you your medications for free, we can all work together to help with information - some of the brightest people I've ever known post here. Some of the most caring too.

    Personally if what you are feeling is anything like what I did - it too will pass, but since you are on medications - maybe that is the most logical place to start. Walmart and Kmart and Target ALL have printable medications for $12.00 for 3 months - and I think Kmart * Walmart carry antidepressants. YOu have to get a psychiatrist to write them for 3 months at a whack.

    Can you afford to go to a psychiatric doctor? No - then get your fingers in teh yellow pages under clinics and see who will see you gratis - they do exist. Even in good old sunny where you are.

    As far as missing home? I moved under the same circumstances. I left almost everything behind. I was angry for leaving MY life, my job, MY friends, MY home, MY stuff. Ever time I would think about it? It made me furious. Until - I figured that all of that stuff - the job, the friends, the house, the possessions were NOT worth my life. I didn't feel that for a long time until I worked in therapy to find that I AM WORTH MORE THAN ALL OF THE STUFF I LEFT BEHIND - and no matter what age I am (because I was no chicky) and while it is hard - I can have a new life. IT's not the one I thought it would be - cripes I went from being a Senior Level Administrative Executive Assistant to the President of a Company - to running a dump truck. I had no friends. I had no money. difficult child and I lived in a stolen van for a couple of weeks to get cash to get a place - It was hard, it stunk - and I'm here today to tell you - I have junk for a yardsale coming out of my kazoo and I'm selling the kazoo too. Highest bidder. (author notes the kazoo sounds better if you place a small piece of wax paper over it before humming)

    I don't see your situation as hopeless. I see it as hard, and I see you with a lot of resourceful friends that care about you very much. YEah - I know we aren't the friends you THOUGHT you'd have. WE're MUCH BETTER. lol

    Hugs for your boo boo - and bad day -
    ps. NO MATTER WHAT - if nvts sends you cookies do not eat them.
    PM me - I'LL make you a gift box.
  15. hearts and roses

    hearts and roses Mind Reader

    Hey, MB, I've been there, I can relate and I'm SOOOOO sorry that you're going through this tough time.

    One of the things that I did when I found myself in a strange place (when I moved to CT I knew NO ONE except loco sister and we had a falling out almost immediately)....I hit the library. A lot!! I read so many books the first year I lived here, I couldn't even keep track. I met some interesting people at the library also. Because I commuted on the city bus into Hartford, I had that one hour each way to read. I lived through my books. They kept me sane. I felt so alone and lonely for company and the books were always a life saver.

    I think that you're right about the job market being better after the holidays - people just are not usually hiring this week. Hang in there, something always falls into place when it needs to.

    Your first post ended with "I hate, hate, hate being in such a financial bind. I'm not used to it, Have never been there before." That was me after I separated from my exh. I mean, we had financial difficulties, but never to the extreme I felt after I left. What I discovered were there are other programs out there to take advantage of besides public assistance. There are food pantries to help with your grocery bill. If you cook in bulk you will save money by not having to cook individual meals. There are programs through YMCA/YWCA, Catholic Charities, your local church/synagogue, your local town hall.

    In regards to the bankruptcy - You can find out what you need to know on line and I know I've seen 'Free Consultation" in the Yellow Pages regarding it. I think you should check it out. $50,000+ in medical debt is a HUGE weight on your shoulders for you to start out in your new life with. If I were you, I would try to find a way to lessen that burden. Bankruptcy is not something anyone ever wants to do, but it is available for a reason - sometimes there are extenuating circumstances involved and thank God it is available!! See if it is the way to go. The doctors, hospital, etc., cannot draw blood from a stone and you're a stone right now = what can they do??

    Be easy on yourself, but also force yourself to get out and be around others, even if you are not interacting with them, it's good to be around people. In regards to the medications, my DR told me that the shortest she would ever put anyone on an AD is 3 months. That it takes a couple of weeks to reach optimum levels and then you have to taper off slowly. She said one month is not enough and not medically sound or beneficial in the long term. I take my AD usually from Nov to May, but this year my DR started me earlier because I fell into a slump and then winter hit.

    Sending gentle hugs - I wish there was a way for us to make it all better.
  16. witzend

    witzend Well-Known Member

    You've certainly been hit hard with so many things at one time. Plus the benefit of it being Christmas, and I imagine that it is almost more than you can stand. It's no wonder you are having a hard time!

    I hope that things will begin to ease up for you. I know that you are a strong woman and you will come out of it at some point, but you could sure use a hand up right now. You've gotten some good advice. Don't make assumptions about being ineligible for help. Try making a list of things that are bothering you and work on one thing at a time, rather than looking them altogether. You can't fix it all today, but maybe you can fix one small thing, and that will be one less thing to worry about tomorrow. It's like being on a diet. You can't lose 5 pounds today. But you can lose two pounds a week, and in a couple of weeks you will have reached your goal.

    Big hugs, Sweetie. Know that you are not alone in your sorrow, or in your recovery.
  17. Big Bad Kitty

    Big Bad Kitty lolcat

    ((((more hugs)))). Just because.

    Heather is right. If you send the doctors ANYTHING a month, they have to leave you alone. Too bad if it is not all at once. And they don't add interest either.

    Jo is right...I think...I really believe that you need to be on medications longer for them to work properly. Unless there is a reason to not stay on them, why not give it a shot? Call around. Health department, Catholic Charities...yes it is humbling, but you gotta do what you gotta do.

    Star is right. Do not eat any cookies if they come from Nvts.

    I do get where you are coming from. When I split with Matt, it was completely leaving behind a life that I did not want to leave. And it was not fair. In time I saw it as a chapter of my life. And I mad a decision. I could either be mad at where I was, or embrace it and take it for a ride.

    Hey, Meow-Meow von Bunnypants. Go take it for a ride.
  18. nvts

    nvts Active Member

    Bunny: Don't listen to Star: if I send the cookies there will be NO CRICKETS!

    Listen: the hospital is like school administrators. They speak with tons of authority but know NOTHING! If you were to go on medicaid (emergency medicaid used to backdate when there's an emergency medical condition), they will only collect about 1/10th of what they would if you secured private insurance or paid them as much as you could per month.

    Go to Medicaid and explain the situation to a person there. Bring your social security card, proof of address and difficult child's birth certificate.

    On your way home stop at unemployment and drop off your resume.

    Or Star will send you....BUTTER SOUP WITH CRICKET GARNISH!!!

  19. Star*

    Star* call 911

    Meow -

    I made cookies today with - BUTTER SOUP, aloe, lizards and a wolf spider. Pretty witchy huh?

    The butter apparently in a microwave will boil - the lizards were in the aloe plant that I cut because you would THINK I would know NOT to take a pan out of the oven with my bare hands but apparently some neural receptors have been blocked. When I reached up in the plant there was a baby dragon (little green lizard). Later when I was cleaning up I got the bucket out and in the bottom was a humongous wolf spider. WE all went out side and had a come to Jesus meeting about who is allowed in the house when Mommy bakes. Not the lizard, not the spider.

    Baking truly is a labor of love - and NOW DF is in the den shooting his bird shot in the attic because it's getting cold here and the squirrels have come in somewhere. Last year we had electric squirrel tar tar and had to call an electrician the day after Christmas - he got the wires fixed - but would not touch the fried squirrel - so I climbed up in the attic all 200+ lbs of me and I put my foot through the ceiling in the den.

    I swear if we had neighbors closer - they would think we were the Addams Family. Uncle Fester is up in the attic shooting at squirrels again MaMa.

    You think YOU have problems- do you know how bad fried squirrel smells? OY

    Hope this finds you feeling better - and hey if life gets too boring come here - never a dull moment.
  20. Big Bad Kitty

    Big Bad Kitty lolcat


    Frying squirrels. "accidentally" she says. "Because they are somehow getting in the attic" she says.

    by the way, that was no wolf spider in yer bukkit...