Counselling and Recovery


It’s been a while since I posted about my mental health, and to be honest mostly that’s been because there’s not been much to say. I’ve been slowly improving and believe it or not (I’m not sure I do most of the time) I can barely feel my depression every day now. My patronus is strong and the dementor isn’t even bothering to try and attack me.

So the issue then that I face is what to do about medication? Yes, I’ve been doing well in terms of my depression, but I’ve started to get a few symptoms of PTSD. I’ve been the dutiful¬†patient and see my GP who has referred me for a PTSD assessment. The main problem I was having is nightmares or flashbacks while I was asleep. One of the causes of this getting worse could be the fact that I’m on 40mg of Citalopram – the highest dose.

But changing meds is probably one of the scariest things about being depressed. When you’re doing good, the idea of changing meds or dose fills you with fear that your control will slip away and any progress you’ve made just disappear.

Luckily, I came into a bit of money lately. Nothing huge, but enough for me to actually invest in the long-term private counselling I need to deal with my issues. CBT has never really worked well for me and that’s all that the NHS seems to offer now. I’ve been going to my therapist now for 3 weeks and it’s already helping.

The thing about counselling is that you sort of have to pull everything down and build it back up again, making the process very hard and emotionally draining. I’ve gone into sessions thinking I’ll discuss one thing and end up in a completely different place and discovering something totally different about myself.

My last session was incredibly painful and I’m struggling to talk about it right now. I aim to be as open as possible in this blog because that’s the only way we can break down stigma and help each other, but this is too fresh and will have to wait. But despite this, I can say that getting private counselling has been one the best decisions I’ve made. But without the money I got, I’d never in a million years be able to afford it. We need to start offering long-term therapy on the NHS because otherwise, people will just continue to relapse.

Sometimes I have to remind myself to take a second and appreciate this. Right now, I’m living like I’ve no dementor hanging over my shoulders. Sure there are still bad days, but they’re far more like the standard bad days that anyone without mental illness gets. And this is all quite fantastic considering what I’ve felt like over the past few years.

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