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eleep

Ugly Breakup + Dissertation + Celiac Kicking My Spirit

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So, most of my major anxiety, brain fog and fatigue issues have been resolved by the gluten-free diet and the vitamins.

However, I'm mourning the loss of a six year relationship and it's kicking my ass -- although I've finally broken off contact with the continually angry for months guy who dumped me and then continued to send mixed messages for another two months about wanting to reconcile and about how much the whole breakup was my fault. This is kind of a caricature -- it's more complicated and we had a really good, strong bond in some ways, but it's been eclipsed by his anger at me and my health stuff.

I seriously need to get structure and joy back into my life -- I'm supposed to be doing research and writing all summer, but the lack of form to my days is starting to be a problem. I am doing a lot of positive things -- lots of yoga and eating right and seeing friends (and I've actually been introduced to a guy I can have some fun dates with and have plans to call another guy I've known for a while and ask him out).

I'm doing my best to move on, but yesterday morning the guy came and finally got the rest of his stuff out of the house (I had to force him to do it), and it's left me feeling free but depressed and sapped. For the past day, I've been doing way too much napping and sitting on the couch with the cat.

I'm seeing a psychologist who's very supportive and lauds my strong spirit and positive attitude -- I really want to do all of this in such a way that I'm feeling what I need to feel and processing my emotions effectively so I can move through things in a healthy way -- but I'm starting to consider that I might need to take something to get me over the hump for a couple of months -- any recommendations for gluten-free anti-depressant meds that aren't too scary?

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you might consider st. john's wort - effective for mild to moderate depression for some people. be careful about interactions with other drugs and increased sensitivity to sunlight, however.

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I take St. John's Wort and wear sunglasses!! :) Works great for me! There's a difference between sadness and depression; just because you're not depressed, doesn't mean things won't make you sad. There's no magic to getting over a guy ... but it can help you to get out of the depression part.

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St. John's Wort -- great idea -- have I heard something about it interacting with birth control pills? Those are the only other pharmacuticals I'm taking. Not that I need to take them right now, but I'm a little leery about messing with my hormonal balance on top of everything else....

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I've read several times now that exercise has the same or better rate of positive effect as psych meds. Is there any way you might be able to add exercise to the yoga (which is great and I wish I could do it right now but I have to wait until my shoulder is better)? Even if it's just going for a walk for 30 minutes a day? Outside air is better than inside air (especially if the sun comes out occasionally), and my physical therapist says that swinging your arms is a proven (chemically!) mood-lifter.

As for napping all day and hanging out with the kittty--give yourself a break! A little recovery time is normal; you are mourning the loss of something you cherished, even if it proved to be better for you in the long run to lose it. It's okay to give yourself a little time to mourn, especially if you are already taking these positive steps.

If this "continually angry guy who dumped you" is now trying to heap blame on you, then you are definitely better off without him.

Sometimes it's better to be alone--or with a purring kitty!-- than with someone who makes you feel bad. I definitely preferred my cat to every guy that I dated until I met my husband, who loved that cat almost as much as I did. Interestingly, that cat loved my husband, too--but he HATED the guy I dated before I met my husband. Come to think of it, that guy was very controlling , so I think Kitty was on to something!

Hang in there, it gets much better, and congratulations on making the rest of your life better!

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Oh, you are so right! Back in college I was dumped by two guys I was crazy about right in a row. One is now my husband! Anyway, I was so depressed, along with fatigue and brain fog from my undiagnosed celiac ... my roommate took me to the emergency room. The doc said to slow down a bit, and sent me home. That next summer, I exercised daily. I felt great emotionally when I went back to school for the next year.

For this very reason, I do cardio at least 4 times per week for 30-40 minutes. You've heard of the runner's high? I'm addicted. Then I have to go home and eat to make up for the burned calories!

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Yeah -- I think the cardio is a good idea -- I was actually running 4 days a week post-breakup and then realized how severely underweight and malnourished I was -- when I proctored the exam for the class I was teaching, I noticed that my hands were shaking as I handed out the exam questions. Took time off to rest, heal and get my weight back up -- which meant cutting out the cardio. Maybe I should just start off with jogging twice a week for a while.

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yes, I believe STJ can interact with BC. and it makes you much more prone to burning in the sun. it's metabolized on the same pathway as a number of other common meds, like MAOI's, so grapefruit affects it as well. if exercise, proper diet, appropriate levels of sleep, and enough sunshine don't help, it's one place to start. I really dislike 'temporarily' messing with brainchemicals with the hardcore drugs, but if you need to do it, you need to do it. good luck!

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You are going through a normal grief cycle mourning the loss of a relationship. I got put on Zoloft during my divorce from a really emotionally abusive but distant guy. (AH#3). If your therapist thinks it would help, then maybe you could try something. But remember, it takes nearly 4 weeks for SSRIs to build up enough in the brain before you notice a change. In that time you could get over your down episode on your own. But I agree with the others - excersize has many proven benifits for emotional and physical health. I'm excersizing more now and have cut my zoloft in half with plans to get off it entirely. Good luck and keep us posted!

Annette

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One thing that could help is Rescue Remedy. It's pretty easy to find in health food stores these days. Sometimes even in the natural foods section of supermarkets. I've used it after deaths in the family, and when I get especially stressed out about something. It doesn't knock you out or anything, but it does give you a nice sense of calm and clear-headedness.

http://www.bachflower.com/rescue_remedy.htm

Rescue Remedy & Rescue Remedy Cream is a combination of Bach Flower Essences that is specially beneficial when you find yourself in traumatic situations, such as, stress, emergencies, after getting bad news, before an exam or job interview and all other kind of situations where we suddenly loose balance mentally. The Essences quickly get us back in our normal balance so that we calmly can deal with any situation.

The components:

http://healing.about.com/cs/floweressences...escueremedy.htm

Star of Bethlehem

This essence is a restorative remedy for calming anyone who has experienced shock or trauma. It has a balancing energy that is helpful in taking while undergoing counseling or therapeutic healing periods. Aids the grief process.

Rock Rose

This remedy is recommended in the event of life threatening emergency. It calms the individual when experiencing extreme panic, terror, or hysteria, restoring strength and courage.

Impatiens

This essence remedy addresses metal stresses and tensions. It calms feelings of impatience and irritability. It slows the tendency to move to quickly without care or forethought. Calming. Allows one to deepen his/her life experience without experiencing burnout.

Cherry Plum

This essence addresses emotions of desperation and loss of control. This remedy helps one re-connect with a higher power when the tensions and pressures of life are overwhelming. It brings mental calmness and emotional encouragement, allowing stresses and fears to be overcome.

Clematis

This remedy brings about focused awareness. It retards floaty or dreamy escapes. It is a grounding essence that wakes up the individual to better evaluate the present situation.

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I am sorry to hear about your breakup. I went through a nasty one and that wasn't even with a guy who I went out with for that long. Exercise is supposed to be really good for depression. I know I can't live without exercising because then I will get depressed. Hang in there

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.... I'm mourning the loss of a six year relationship and it's kicking my ass...

I know what it's like celiac disease creates issues for everyone. Try not to internalize it - it will make you sick(er). My heart goes out to you. You have a good out-look and a positive plan, that's important.

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Guest BERNESES

Eleep- You are going through so much right now between your dissertation (I'm a doc student too), your breakup, and Celiac. And you're doing a good job- you're exercising and getting help. You need that time on the couch with your kitty and napping- grieving the end of a relationship, even if it wasn't good, is totally normal. If you continue to feel down in the dumps, crying, trouble eating or sleeping (too much or not enough), then you might be depressed and not just grieving (it's hard to tell the difference sometimes). talk to your therapist.

SJW is supposed to be good and I use fish oil to supplement Celexa (fish oil is good for a host of things- mood, joint and heart health). hang in there! B

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Everyone here has been so supportive -- thank you so much. I actually think you may be the only group of people who could ever fully comprehend the weirdness of what's going on with my life right now -- the amazing fact that I've finally figured out what's wrong with me and that it's fixable.

I'm actually in the process of picking up the pieces too because the celiac symptoms had really prevented me from doing the things I needed to be doing -- I've been working on this Ph.D. for way too long partly because graduate school was a "safe" place to be sick and fatigued and still use my brain. I knew that there was something more going on because my ability to even use my brain was starting to be affected.

The irony of the relationship stuff was that -- well, he was aware there was something wrong with me too -- and he very much wanted me to get better. However, as with any relationship he's got his own issues -- the anger is a large part of it -- which I may have overlooked because there was so much focus on my being sick. He was too focused on my illness to really deal with his own stuff.

So, there you are -- I tend to approach this stuff from a scientific perspective, but the emotional reality is there too. Now that my brain is clear and I'm not having constant inexplicable mood swings, I see much more clearly what's going on with him -- right now, I mostly see him when we're at social events together and he's drunk -- or in the light of day, when he's angry and irritable and blaming me for everything. This is a guy I used to climb mountains with and canoe the Everglades with -- but he's really doing his best right now to push that part of himself away.

Yeah -- did I mention that I'm also a very verbal person and I tend to process things by endlessly writing or talking? I see my therapist tomorrow -- I can tell it's about time!

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Guest BERNESES

Eleep- i'm glad you found the support you needed here! Just because a relationship was unhealthy doesn't mean you don't mourn it. I think a lot of times you mourn the "what could have been' because you see the potential in this guy, but it's being ruined by alcohol, anger and his other issues.

And being single is hard- especially in grad school. I finished my coursework in december and i'm finding the the exam/dissertation phase is a pretty lonely place to be. PM or email me anytime- I get lonely too and i'm married! it's just that all of a sudden you're on your own and making your own schedule and the people you took classes with are all off doing their dissertations. Tthere's actually a great forum called phinished.org where you can go and vent about this stuff.

And to have the Celiac diagnosis on top of it al...well, it's just hard. Give yourself some time and be good to you. hugs, Beverly

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