So, about half an hour ago I was crying in hysterics. Hyperventilating too. And I was – still am – all alone looking after my 2 pre-school children. Who can you ask for help in this situation? Not my husband, who has to go to work. He can’t take much more time off to look after me, he’ll loose his job. And not my parents, who dropped the kids back off with me only 2 hours or so ago. They aren’t well themselves, and they’ve already looked after the children for 3 nights. They can’t do any more.
How did I get here? Well, I’m ill. I suffer from depression, which I tell everyone I’m managing, because what else can you say? But not just that. I’ve had the ‘flu for over 2 weeks now, and having had a hospital visit on Monday it has apparently turned into sinusitis. So I’m both physically and mentally ill. I’m on anti-biotics for the sinusitis, and I called up the hospital to ask if the weakness and light-headedness I’m feeling could be a side effect. They told me to go see my GP if I’m feeling unwell. So I called up my doctors to make an appointment, couldn’t work out if I should say if it was urgent or not (I nearly started crying on the phone) so the lovely receptionist put me down for an urgent call back this afternoon.
It was directly after this phone call that I broke down. I don’t believe there was any precipitating cause – I was shocked to be offered a choice of urgent appointment today which stymied me, but I don’t think that’s cause for hysterical crying. I’m really struggling at the moment with my depression, and I don’t know who to ask for help with that either. I don’t see the point in going to the doctors – I’ve tried about 5 different types of anti-depressant and none have seemed to make a difference to me. I’ve had cognitive behaviour therapy, which seems to beast ally boil down to common sense practices which only help if you’re ready to come out of depression already. If you’re still struggling on a downward spiral, they don’t just not help, they make you feel worse about yourself. And I’ve had counselling, which did help but the NHS can only afford to give you 8/12 weeks of counselling. After that you’re on your own.
So, no point going to the doctors, as there’s nothing else they can do for me. I’ve registered with Deprssion Alliance, asked about possible local groups (1 maybe, it’s 20 minutes by car away if it exists) and I’ve registered with their online community. Sadly this hasn’t really helped me much, but I’ll keep participating and hoping.
I suppose there’s other family. My father-in-law lives in London, which is about 5 hours away, and has his own life down there. My brother has his own problems (M.E.) and his own family, so he doesn’t have time to look after his sister. I have cousins and aunts and uncles, but they all have their own lives to live.
My friends are wonderful and supportive, but what can they do? They all have to work and so can’t visit during the day when I’m by myself. So I’m left with the question – who can you ask for help? I honestly don’t know the answer, and I wish I did.